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shane762

HMS Badger by shane762 - Caldercraft - Scale 1:64 - Nearly straight from the box

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So, thanks to my very welcome but very time and energy consuming 3 month old son I really don’t have the time or energy for modelling.  So instead I’ve decided to live vicariously through myself and do a build log on a model I finished a couple of years ago. The Caldercraft HMS Badger.

The Badger was my second wooden ship model, the first being a build of the MS Willie Bennet.  Before that I’d been building plastic model since the age of four.  Mostly tanks or aircraft.    I chose the Badger since it seemed like it had a lot of bang for the buck without being too ambitious.  Two masts, cannons, complex but not ludicrous rigging a double planked hull.  I figured it would be a kit I could build and decide if square rigged modelling was for me or another passing fancy.

 

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Note:  Not built when I was four years old.

 

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The MS Willie Bennet built as a fictional Skipjack.  I built it for my sister who lives on the Chesapeake Bay and loves sailboats.  Charlie Ann was a beloved family pet and number 16 was my sister's soccer number.  Spelling it "Charley Anne"  made it look to me a little bit more archaic.

 

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I always like to take a picture of the modelling area cleaned and prepped.  This picture marked the beginning of the build and was taken July 31st 2010.

 

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Jumping right in I've already sanded down the bearding line and attached the two piece keel.  I'm not sure if I made a mistake or misunderstood the relationship between the two pieces but there was a significant step between at the join.  I added a strip of walnut to make up the difference.  One thing I learned on the previous build was that I wanted to firgure out the mounting as early as possible.  You can see that I've marked the waterline on the frame and marked two perpendicular lines where the mounts will go.

 

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Just a quick check to make sure they are sitting the way I wanted.

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August 3, 2010Test fitting the frames.  All of the pieces fit well on mine.  None were loose and only a few need minor sanding to slide into place.  I used Legos, squares, and several other things to make sure everything was clamped perfectly square when I glued them up.  I double checked and triple checked before ever glue touched wood.  Aaaannnddd of course I still screwed one up.  I think it was frame number eight, the next to last one, was slightly out of square.  Of course I didn't notice it until WAY, WAY later.

 

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After soaking, clamping the ply cannon port former into place.  Just slightly apparent in this picture is my second mistake.  I was too timid in fairing the frames and I've made the Badger a rather more Bluff bow boat than she should be.  You can just see near the bow where the ply isn't quite conforming to the form.  i thought at the time that it was just the ply not bending enough.  Nope.  Bad fairing.  This one would also come back to bite me later.

 

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The planking begins.  So far so good for my first ever planking.

 

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Here it begins to get a touch dodgy.  I was thining the planks to sliver.  In hindsight this would have been a great time to practice some spiling before I got to the top coat as it were.

 

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August 18 2010.  Planking the stern.  You can see more evidence of insufficient fairing.  Instead of a nice sweep my planks actually angle upward sharply.

 

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November 11, 2011  BIG time jump here.  The model sat idle for more than a year. 

I was able to correct the sharp angle by heavily sanding the area afterwards.  if you look you can see spots where I literally sanded completely through the planks.  To re-enforce these areas I filled the corresponding interior areas with a small (ish) amount of body filler. 

 

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not the cleanest first planking ever but I don't think it was the worst ever.

Edited by shane762

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Following the kit instructions I started the second planking with the wale and the plank above it.  The walnut in the good was of decent but not spectacular quality.  it was cut crisply with good square edges but was a bit splintery.

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The first plank below the wale was already wanting to curve up sharply.  I really should have taken a stab at spiling but I didn't think I was up to it.  Instead i saw where Mondfeld in Historic Ship Models shows the Dutch method of handling stealers and it seemed like it would work.   

 

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Working my way down.5a18e36282051_Mikella114.thumb.jpg.effc8fe4cca20ab292d1e615f4f038c1.jpg

 

The effect wouldn't be appropriate for this boat but it looks pretty nice I think.    The gaps between some of the planks look massive but in person they're much less obtrusive.

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You can see in some of the pictures that the wood has some slight splintering on the edges.  Sanding removed some of it but it's still visible in spots.

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Another thing I learned is the value of a good rabbet.  While not the worst I've seen, if I had cut a rabbet into the keel this would look much neater.

 

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I had a good bit of trouble handling the plank termination at the stern.  I probably should have planked the counter afterwards or at least left the bottom run.  I was left with a kind of snaggle tooth appearance.

 

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I cut the ends of the planks evening them up and inserted a single piece cross ways to fill the gap.  it left a nice clean appearance and is almost invisible on the finished model.

 

 

 

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Finished planking. 

 

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The completely invisible interior deck (orlop?).  looks nice though.

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Fitting the false deck.  I've marked out the centerline,  points for plank shift and added several parallel  lines so that I can make sure the planks are running true.

 

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Decking complete.  I colored one side of each plank with a sharpie but I used a pencil to highlight the butt after they were down.  I added treenails using basswood scraps run through a Byrnes draw-plate.   I first tried an inexpensive draw plate from somewhere else but almost immediately realized that cheap really wasn't going to work.  The treenails look a bit more prominent in this photo then they do in person.

 

 

 

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It's funny.  Looking at these pictures I just realized what my mistake actually was that caused me such problems in the bow area later in the build.  I thought that I hadn't spent enough time fairing the frame in the bow area which caused it to be too bluff.  Now I realize that I set the plywood gunport formers wrong.  I think I set the very front of them slightly high which caused them to splay out more than they should have.  it's why later on the kit's upper rails didn't fit and why the first hull planks swooped upwards excessively.  Wow.  Pretty happy to learn something from a mistake I made five years ago on a build that I finished two and a half years ago.

Edited by shane762

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Dear Shane-

 

I have just started working on building the HM Badger, and i was hoping that you can help me with a  questions.  Am I correct  that the Gunport  Pattern  Former gets removed after the the Gunport Patterns are fitted to the bulkheads?    While this may be obvious --from your and other the pictures of the build out as well as  the  placing of the Upper Gundeck -- I didn't see removing the Former in the instructions.  Any information you can provide me on this would be most appreciated.  Thanks much.

 

Andy

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Andy,it sounds like you are describing the above-deck extensions of the hull bulkheads. Those get removed after the outer planking is finished.

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