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Hey Group,

 

I am excited to announce my next project - a fully framed build of the French Frigate La Renommee in classic 1/48 scale.  After a couple of false starts (Le Gros Ventre in 1/36th and a 74 in 1/48 - I have deleted those logs) I have fallen in love with this ship.  This will be a 6500 hour plus build as I intend to mast and fully rig her.  

 

I have spent several years amassing the amount of tools necessary not to mention building out a workshop to handle a project of this degree.  The reason I chose her over Le Gros Ventre and the 74 (I love both of these ships) is she embodies the best elements of French Naval architecture (extreme tumblehome, elegant sculptures, inner oblique planking and racy lines) and is scalable for a first fully framed build.   Boudriot's Monograph of La Renommee landed last week (it took less than a week from when I placed the order from France to arrive at my door) and its spectacular.  The figurehead and stern is intimidating and right now I am by no means a "carver".  But this is a skill I want to master - and done right, in my opinion La Renommee's sculptures are some of the most beautiful in all of naval architecture.  

 

For reference I have volumes 1-3 of Boudriots 74 Gun Ship Series and David A's The Fully Framed Ship Series for "how to" techniques.    

 

My goal is to build the construction board/site and begin work on the keel by year end.  Stay tuned....

La Renommee.JPG

Resources.JPG

New Project 3.JPG

Edited by ChrisLBren
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Hi Chris - 

 

Looking forward to following your progress from the beginning.  With such an ambitious building timeline it should be quite the project.  

 

One small word of caution - as much as I respect the work and scholarship of M. Budriot, I have found some significant issues when working with his monographs.  He has a tendency to re-use his drawings from the 74-gun ship project for designs of smaller ships by simply reducing them in size, without taking into account the fact that humans cannot be similarly reduced.  So check headroom clearances, ladder riser heights, and similar details before incorporating them into your model.

 

Best of succcess.

 

Dan 

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Thanks everyone for your comments and encouragement.  I have just sourced some beautiful Gabon Ebony to accent the Pear I bought from France earlier this year (I am fully aware of how tough it is to work with and its toxicity - nothing replicates its appearance though).  I really want to push the envelope and challenge myself with this build.  

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Ebony is not harder to work with today's tools, than can be boxwood.

Ebony is toxic because the dust is so fine and the finer the dust the deeper it will go in the lungs.

Every kind of wood can be toxic but if you wear a mask, you can solve most of the problem

and as you say: nothing looks and feels like ebony.

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Hi Chris,

 

Glad you have finally fixed your mind on the next build.

 

The Renommee is a beautiful ship in my opinion, but a difficult one to model - I’m sure she will give you lots of challenges and excitement.

 

Ebony has its own charms, it also has its own issues, your choice if you want to battle with it.

 

I will look forward to watching your build as you progress, love what you are doing and don’t try to rush man - that’s the mantra I’m trying to follow ( hell - I’ve built two models so far of the same ship and I’m still trying to get to the halfway point LOL )

 

ben

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Thanks Gaetan and Ben !  This ebony will either succeed or be my folly.  It cost me 100 USD for one board foot.  To reduce the dust - I will have my facility mill it into 1/4 inch thick boards and Ill use separate blades to cut it to specific dimensions for my ship vs the ones I use to cut my Pear.  I want to at least give it a try - Ive been getting some tips on how to use it/bend it successfully with laminations.  We'll see....

 

This one won't be rushed Ben - it took me 8 years to finish Confederacy - this one will probably take 16 years !  Hopefully I will only have to build it once - LOL

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  • 3 weeks later...

First steps - with the Byrnes thickness sander created some billets for the keel parts and knee of the head - both Ebony and Pear to approximately 6.5 mm.  I am using my new solar powered Mitutoyo calipers (recent b day gift) to measure in metrics - it makes more sense to me than Imperial.  My Proxxon mf70 arrived as well - hoping to create some dust his weekend !   

Wood.JPG

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  • 2 weeks later...

Good Morning Group,

 

I have cut out the first piece for the keel assembly - approximately two hours using most of my tools - the Byrnes Thickness Sander for final dimensioning of the billet, the DeWalt Scroll Saw, Spindle Sander and Byrnes Disc Sander.  I am hoping to become more efficient with the scroll saw - which would have cut down the amount of sanding time therefore producing the piece in less time.  I have noticed slowing the speed down on the scroll saw (at least for me) produces a more controllable cut.  It still felt great to be back at building and having fun with my new tools !

 

First observations - this new pear cuts cleanly and will finish beautifully - this piece is only sanded to 220.  Its a bit harder and lighter than the wood I used for Confederacy - which I prefer.  If i could just get my kids to sleep in I wouldn't be interrupted after only an hour of work.  4am to 6am is my workshop time - and they've been getting up at 5 for some reason - probably to torment me....

IMG_4243 (1).JPG

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Too funny - the 3-4 speed setting was the sweet spot I found this AM when cutting out the scarf joints on this 1/4 inch thick piece - the blade was much more precise vs the higher speed I used to cut out this part out a few days ago from the billet.   Im curious to try out this setting tomorrow AM when I cut out the next keel part.  I purchased most of these tools after Confederacy was just about complete so Im still getting used to them and having fun in the process.    

Edited by ChrisLBren
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And you're off, Chris! Pear is a fantastic wood to work with. It's not the worst idea to leave these crucial pieces slightly wider than spec while forming those difficult scarph joints. If the angle of your joint is off by a degree or two it will kick up or down the mating piece by a small amount. Leaving a little extra while mating the joints will give you a bit of leeway if this happens.

 

Curious as to which spindle sander you've chosen. How about the scroll saw blade? The right blade makes all the difference.

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This is off to a great start, Chris.  I can relate to trying to get a little quality working time in, around the sleeping times of my kids.  I try to get at least a little something done, most evenings, but some nights I just don’t have it.

 

Anyway, this is such a lovely frigate you are building, and I am looking forward to following along.

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