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Aftermarket yards and Masts for plastic kits


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I looked here and on the net for an alternative to using plastic yards in the kit.

 

I found some in 1/350 I believe it was.  There were no 1/100 scale yards to be found.. (by me).

 

Does anyone know of alternatives to flimsy plastic yards out there?  I don't have the tools to make them aside from casting them.

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I was surprised to discover how easily yards can be made from wooden dowels with only an xacto knife and a #10 or #22 blade. Start with a dowel that is the same diameter (or a little bit bigger) as the thickest part of the yard. Mark the major transition points and centre point etc with a pencil and when necessary make shallow cuts around the dowel at those points. Then taper the dowel by simply scraping it repeatedly, pulling the knife towards you and rotating the dowel as you go. If you have to reduce the diameter significantly at the very end of the yard, make your shallow cut around the perimeter, then make short cuts coming in from the end towards the centre. Follow up with some sanding. While you won't get results that are as perfect as turning in a lathe would produce, you'll be surprised to discover what good results you can actually achieve. You will get a perfectly acceptable result. I am no expert craftsman and got very nice looking yards right off the bat using this method. And considering that a length of dowel won't break the bank, you can afford to have several practice runs if need be. I'm give this a try if I were you. Hope that's of some help.

 

David

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My 1/96 scale Constitution that ended up in drydock after losing out in battle with the garage floor was a Revell plastic kit that I replaced the deck, masts, and spars with wood.  It was fairly easy to do, as I had the plastic parts to use for patterns to copy.  I was more satisfied with the results than I was with the originals.  The masts being hollow plastic were a great improvement in solid wood.   The deck I made with some panels made up from glued up individual narrow wood planks with dark glue to represent caulking.  This eliminated the plastic seams that were way too obvious on the original !   It was a lot of extra work but the results were quite satisfing ! :-D

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For those of you who are not familiar with woodworking tools, let me suggest scrapers for rounding and sizing the wood for masts and spars.  Look to some catalogs such as LeeValley for sources; there are many many others as well. I have found the curvy type most useful...it looks like a SHMOO. (I'm showing my age).  The curves help keep the rounded shape while the scraping action helps  prevent nicks and digging in. For such a small surface as a dowel, the scraper need not be very sharp, though it helps.  There are a multitude of these tools ranging from very cheap to ridiculous.  You really don't need an expensive one for this use.

 

Chazz

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  • 11 months later...
  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

Ok. I'm back at it.  Will be creating blocks and pendants for a little while.  Then I'll start back at the rigging for the bowsprit.

I'v been evicted from our spare bedroom and now in the shed. (picture)

 

This is not a friendly scale model environment.  If there is a 'pimp my model room show' please think of me. HA!!!

In the summer it will be hot enough to soften plastic in here.

IMG-1614.thumb.JPG.6fcdb408169ad04ba92176d832bc1876.JPG

Edited by William-Victory
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