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Blue Ensign

HM Cutter Cheerful 1806 by Blue Ensign - FINISHED - 1:48 scale

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Thank you Vossie and Ian.

Peter Goodwin in his book The Cutter Alert makes reference to Admiralty orders specific to the provision of boats for cutters.

He cites an order of December 1763 that during winter only one small 4 oared boat should be allocated and that it should be carried rather than towed to avoid being lost.

An order of June 1779 mentions 16' boats for cutters, another in July 1783  recommends the addition of a second boat, and in September 1793 an order decreed that cutters employed against smuggling should replace their 18' boat with one of 20'

On Cheerful only a small boat could be carried on deck so it is more than likely a larger one was towed. 

In the Alert book there is a photo of the model of the cutter Hawke carrying a small boat on the port side of the deck.

I am playing around with what would be a 14' cutter or Jolly boat for deck storage.

 

B.E.

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Post 86

Thinking about Anchors

... or ground tackle as we professionals call it. 😉

I have usually purchased metal anchors for my models, I check out the weight sizes according to Steel for the vessel concerned, work out the shank length at scale which gives me the size to buy.

Anchors were allocated to ships by relative size and tonnage and Steel gives tables covering all rates.

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His reference to cutters appears to indicate (3) anchors of 10cwt + a figure for quarters which is not clear. This is at variance with Goodwin's figures in the Alert book which suggests anchors of 18cwt, 15cwt , plus a stream of 6cwt, and a kedge of 3cwt

 

I don't know how Chuck arrived at the sizes for the anchors, they have a shank length of 55mm which scales up to a length of 8' 6" which according to Steel equates to an anchor of 6cwt  but I made up the Syren wooden anchor kits, and in truth I do like the look of them.

 

I used a toned down black paint for the anchors followed by weathering powder, dark brown and a smidge of rust.

 

For the puddening of the anchor ring I used 0.30mm line (2" circ at scale) and 0.1mm line ¾" circ at scale)

The stocks I drilled and pegged and coated with wipe-on poly.

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To represent the iron stock bands I used my favourite medium of slices of heat shrinkable rubber tubing.

A short blast from the hairdryer on top heat and it moulds securely to the stock.

 

Rigging the anchors

I am trying out various arrangements, mainly using John Harland's reference work, Seamanship in the age of Sail.

In relation to anchor cables and windlasses he describes thus:

The cable is taken three times around the barrel, the turns coming off the top, the inboard end being kept to the outer end to facilitate the turns.

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The cable is 1.5mm dia stuff equivalent to a 9" circ cable.

The Alert cable is given as 11½" circ - 1.9mm ø at scale.

I decided to stick with 1.5mm stuff.

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Normans (wooden pegs) have been inserted into heaver holes to which the cables will be seized.

This is a stylistic arrangement to display the run of the cables  around the windlass and onto the anchor ring.

I continued to rig the Cat blocks and falls  using a 6mm double block with the ironwork represented  once again by a slice of heat shrink tubing.

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That is the easy bit, but as with other questions relating to Cheerful, positioning the anchors is a different story, and one that is giving me a headache, and  brought me at least for the present, to a shuddering halt. 😖

 

B.E.

01/05/2019

 

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BE,

I think you are on the right track. I like the size of cable you used rather than the heavier 1.9mm.

It seems that Goodwin used the 200 ton Sloop figures for Alert.  However, Sloop could be a three masted non-rate ship as well as a single masted ship depending on definition.   I think the quarters are just that.  So 10ctw 2 qtr would e 10.5 cwt I believe.  Either way, the Syren anchors are hard to beat.

 

Vossiewulf just finished securing his anchors to timber heads in his build of Lady Nelson if that gives you any ideas for how you want to proceed.  

 

Fair winds 😃

 

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Nice job on the "ground tackle" B.E. Have to agree that the anchor sizes look good. I made mine up using Caldercraft anchors of approx the same size Chuck shows on the plan. The stocks I made as shown in Laverys' book from Box and pinned them with 1mm copper wire which I blackened. Like your idea of using heatshrink for the stock bands,I used black card which is a hastle. Must remember that. My replacement Red Ensign came in the post a couple of days ago and my Speedwell book (hopefully) is on its way from the (far side of the world :D) Having a little break just now,my left hand is giving me a hard time,sods law as I'm left handed :(

 

Just a question but why have you shown the anchor cables running straight off the windlass top to the stowage holes in the gratings ? I would have thought they should sag onto and run along the deck 3 feet or so aft of the windlass. Your "normans"have reminded me I've yet to make windlass levers.

 

Regards,

 

Dave :dancetl6:

 

 

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Thank you Dowmer, the anchor set up on vossie's Lady Nelson is exactly how I would expect the arrangement to be on a cutter. However, the relative positions of the timberheads on Cheerful and how the anchor would  interfere with the the bow chase gun make this all look awkward.

 

@ Dave -  Hope your working hand recovers quickly and you're soon back to complete your Cheerful.

 

Regarding the anchor cables just a wip at present I need to sort out the anchor positions before I fine tune the deck layout.

 

@ Ferit - thank you for your kind words.🙂

 

Regards,

 

B.E

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Suffering from modellers block in relation to the anchors, I turn my attention to another tricky subject.

Post 87

A boat for Cheerful

The only reference photo I could find of a boat onboard a cutter is this one of a model of the Hawke of 1777.

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Hawke

The Cutter Alert book by Peter Goodwin indicates a boat stored on the centre line but from the plans there is room only for a 13' boat. On Cheerful in this position a boat of only 10.5'  could be accommodated.

The  Model Shipways kit of a 1:48 scale Longboat would be in scale but is far too large for a deck stowed boat, and at 26' is on the large size for a towed boat.

Before I consider scratching a boat as I did for Pegasus, I  knocked up a version of a 14' cutter to assess whether I like the look of a boat on Cheerful's deck .

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The boat is based on a Caldercraft resin hull kitted out with thin boxwood planking and fittings.

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Not quite sure if it's what I'm looking for but I'll leave it in place  to see if it grows on me whilst I return to the anchors, and making the boom.

 

B.E.

03/05/2019

 

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Hello BE Very neat detailed work with anchors, little cutter, actually the whole lot as usual.

These boats are way more complicated than i would ever have guessed.

It does look a bit tight around it, and in the way of the cannons.

You will work something out I'm sure.

Cheers Chris

 

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I think the stowed boat looks great.  On a small vessel like a cutter, with limited deck space, things must appear “tight.”  I suspect IRL there would be much more gear stowed on deck, adding even more to a cramped appearance.  

 

Keith

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15 hours ago, Blue Ensign said:

Not quite sure if it's what I'm looking for but I'll leave it in place  to see if it grows on me whilst I return to the anchors, and making the boom.

It is up to your usual high standards sir but the craftsman will always find fault with his work I guess, no matter how neat. Very inspirational. 

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Cheers guys for your comments and likes 👍

Quickly moving on.

Post 88

Positioning the anchors

The position Chuck has placed the anchors on his model has a nice symmetry about it,  looks aesthetically pleasing, and shows the anchors off to good effect.

This placement  however seems to put them a long way from the cathead which is unusual at least in respect of the Bower anchors, and this is the source of some puzzlement that has been engaging my mind.

 The two timberheads either side of the first port are there to do with anchor tackle, but it seems to me that there should be another one further back to to secure the shank rather than have that function achieved by seizing around the rail above the second port.

... but bringing the anchor ring closer to the Cathead and Cat block  means the shank crosses the first port and the stock inhibits the line of fire available for the chase gun, The sole example we have of the Cheerful/Surly model shows the anchor ring close by the Cathead with the shank running across the first port.

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This is not unusual as demonstrated by many models of all ship types. I have scoured my books and endless photo's of cutters to try and establish anchor stowage arrangements.

My solution to this particular problem is to add a bulwark cleat to secure the aft shank painter.

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 The forward painter can then be secured around the second timberhead, and a stopper secured thro' the ring and over the first  timberhead.

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This is the arrangement I have opted for on the starboard side, crowded as it around the cathead area.

On the Port side I have the anchor hanging from the Cat block and secured by the stopper.

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I like this position, it is aesthetically pleasing, indicates the use of the Cat block, and removes all of the issues around stowing the anchor.

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Getting some drape into the cables.

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I can see myself fiddling for some time adjusting the cables along the deck.

In general I find securing the anchors to the boat a tricky business; they seem to have a life of their own, and temporary seizings are required whilst the first proper seizing is applied.

 Syren wooden anchors are far more delicate than their metal equivalents, and extra care has to be taken when attaching the puddening and cable to the anchor ring.   

Knock the shank and there is a risk of snapping it.

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Still have a nagging doubt, but for the present I will turn my attention to a bit of lathe work.

 

B.E.

04/05/2019

 

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BE, nice rope work.

Just a thought, but the location of the secured anchor on the starboard side completely defeats the purpose of the chase gun. The gun would have been trained as far forward as possible to get a shot. That is impossible with the anchor stock in that location close up against the stbd port. 

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That's the conundrum  Dowmer,  proximity of the anchor to the Cathead, or greater field of fire, but with Cheerful there are other incumbrances to get in the way such as the  standards for the Bowsprit step and windlass. The advantage of the bow chase gun is the range, as sailing ship don't sail in a straight line perhaps that didn't matter that much.

I'll probably never get to the bottom of it, but at the end of the day it's a model and who's going to gainsay me, unless perhaps one of our members has the definitive answer in which case I'm all ears.😃

 

Cheers,

 

B.E.

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Post 89

Boom and Gaff

As part of my reduced rig presentation of Cheerful  I decided to add the Boom and gaff, or at least make them to see how they look.

These are made from Ramin dowel a good straight fine grained timber which, as the spars are painted black, is a good substitute for  the more expensive Boxwood.

Boom

8mm ø dowel is used to make the boom which has an o/a length of 334 mm. The interesting thing about booms is that they taper both ends but not from the centre of the spar.

The taper is produced on the lathe using a card template to check the diameters at various points. The taper is achieved using sandpaper only.

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It's when long spars are required to be worked that the bed extension to the Proxxon lathe comes into its own.

A lot of taper is required on the boom reducing in the outboard end from 8mm to 1.5mm and the inboard end from 8mm to 3mm.

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The jaws proportions were transferred to 3/32" Boxwood sheet, and cut out on the scroll saw, finishing off by hand.

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Checking the fit of the jaws.

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...and of the parral trucks.

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trial fit of the boom.

Gaff

I used 5mmø Ramin dowel, and the procedure is exactly the same as with the boom, but with considerably less sanding dust.

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The 'iron' bands are once again  made from heat shrink tubing.

Mast rings

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I had Chuck's mini kit for the rings I used a few to slip over the stump mast and provide a spacer between the boom and gaff.

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Getting close to completion now

 

B.E.

08/05/2019

 

 

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Sandpaper only!  That's a technique that requires a steady hand (no merlot!) and a thick glove.  Coincidentally, I was on my Proxxon mini-lathe last night, and reached the conclusion that I really need to develop better skills at sharpening my tools.  And now that I see what precision you've accomplished, I'm seriously miffed.

 

Cheers,

 

Martin

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Not really Martin, I tend to have it turning at a low rev setting and on the odd occasion my hand has interfaced with the turning chuck no damage done.(well almost 😉)

I've never got to grips with using wood turning tools on things such as masts and spars and I'm not really sure they're necessary. A good supply of sandpapers and a pair of electronic  calipers seem to do the job.

 

B.E.

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Good evening B.E. She's looking very nice indeed.

 

Do you intend to make the Lower Mast,Topmast and the two Yards to display in front her alongside the Bowsprit you have already there ? I had a good grumble earlier today dozy beggar that I am :rolleyes: I noticed that I'd run the Topsail lifts wrong,they should run down between the Topmast Shrouds. Have to replace them as I had to cut them. Not a big deal as I'll just slip the footrope eyes off the yardarms and rig the replacements. #### happens.

 

Hope you're having better weather than us. It's p'd down nonstop since I got up this morning.

 

Dave :dancetl6: 

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Thanks Dave, I think I’ll quit whilst I’m ahead, I have other little boxes of delight from Mr Passaro  to entertain me 😀

 

We all have those moments, earlier today I photographed the boom in place except I had the mast hoops below the boom. Good job I spotted it before I posted.

 

As for the rain, no different here.

 

Cheers,

 

B.E.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/4/2019 at 11:37 AM, Blue Ensign said:

That's the conundrum  Dowmer,  proximity of the anchor to the Cathead, or greater field of fire, but with Cheerful there are other incumbrances to get in the way such as the  standards for the Bowsprit step and windlass. The advantage of the bow chase gun is the range, as sailing ship don't sail in a straight line perhaps that didn't matter that much.

I'll probably never get to the bottom of it, but at the end of the day it's a model and who's going to gainsay me, unless perhaps one of our members has the definitive answer in which case I'm all ears.😃

 

Cheers,

 

B.E.

My $.02, if I may.

 

Since you are not displaying your model as a working ship, I would go for an arangement that showcases your work , rather than strive for technical accuracy with regard to  a ship undersail and rigged for battle..

 

I have Cheerful on the shelf, and your work is very inspirational..

Edited by Gregory

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Posted (edited)

Hi BE,

At pictures #8418, #8420 the opening of the hook of the cat block looks outside, then at #8529, #8534 inside... Let me know which one is correct or if it doesn't matter.

Edited by Ferit

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Thank you Michael, and Ferit.

 

I'm impressed Ferit, I see you have been paying close attention.👍

I realised that I had rigged the cat blocks with the hook points outboard, when based on many contemporary models, the hook point  faces inboard.

I changed the arrangement to reflect this.

 

Regards,

 

B.E.

 

 

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Post 90

Cheerful is completed.

An eighteen month journey has drawn to a conclusion.

It is interesting to note that the original was built and fitted out within a twelve month period.

Tempted as I may be to mast and rig her, display constraints rule this out, but it's not like I don't have fully rigged models on display, Pegasus, and indeed a 1:72 scale cutter amongst others.

I am happy to conclude the build with this configuration in the knowledge that there are many  contemporary models displayed in this style.

 

I really have to compliment Chuck for making this posssible with his wonderful plans, accurate  pre-cut hull parts, mini kits, and excellent instructions.

Cheerful as I bought it is an example of a high end PoB kit with beautiful kit specific fittings, a real pleasure to build.

 

 I must also compliment Jason at Crown Timberyard who supplied the bulk of the Boxwood strip and sheet, presented in a very clean and accurate condition.

 

So here are the completion photo's before I slip the cover over the base. The case  wasn't designed for Cheerful but for Pegasus to serve as protection during the long years before she was masted, but it does ideally fit the bill.

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A set of 1:48 scale figures stand to provide a human scale to the model.

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To provide an Historical link two copper coins of 1806 sit at the head and stern of Cheerful.

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Display position yet to be decided;

 

Finally I must  thank those members who have shown interest in this build and for their supportive comments and 'likes'.

 

Regards,  

 

B.E.

 

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Posted (edited)

Congratulations and great work BE.  Quite a beautiful representation. I especially like the added touch of the coins.  I may steal that idea some day. 

 

Where did you acquire the 1:48 scale figures? I have found them difficult to procure.

Edited by Dowmer

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