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Brigantine Phoenix by Tim Curtis - Master Korabel - Scale 1:72


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Welcome to my build log for the Master Korabel phoenix.

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I  chose this kit for a number of reasons.

1. It is a high quality kit:

  • It makes use of some good quality wood including pear.
  • Many of the detailed parts are of the highest quality, I note partic the blocks, the yawl/longboat included in the "plus" kit, the gratings, cannons, the many PE brass parts. See below for more info.
  • The "shortcuts": the deck is provided as one sheet, with the planking and treenailing scribed in by laser. The result is a HUGE timesaver, and produces much better results than anything I could do at 1:72. All planking is also laser cut veneer hardwood, with planks already cut to the proper length, curvature and width etc (even the longboat). Again a huge timesaver.
  • There are also about 20 very helpful online tutorials taking you through every step of the build on youtube. Here is the first one, which also is a wonderful intro to the contents of the kit.

 

 

  • Finally the kit is very good value. I got the "plus" version which includes the longboat, higher quality blocks and wood for about $250 AUD. Online from a Russian supplier on ebay. This is about $200.
  • For a time poor church minister, working six days a week, with three kids with a small craft desk in his study...this seemed to be a great value kit, that I will have a fighting chance of completing within 12 months or so.

 

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Here are some photos of the longboat. About 90mm long at 1:72. Its pretty teensy. But a good little kit with most of the wood being pear. Sadly the keel and prow are in very crumbly ply which is hard to work with, and has a poor finish.

Stained the wales, rail and top plank with permanent marker to get some tidy colour, without the difficulty of painting at this little scale.

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Edited by Tim Curtis
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Here are a few photos of the cannons. Again pretty teensy at this scale.

They come as a separate little laser cut kit, with barrels cast including a vague royal seal.

There is some laser scribing in the wood which I like, partic the detailed capsquare. Ring bolts are PE brass, included in the kit, but I have not fitted them yet.

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Edited by Tim Curtis
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Here is some of the bulkhead planking which come as laser cut veneer sheets, with gunports already cut, and planking scribed by laser.

The external planking is in annegri wood, which has a pronounced grain which responds badly to staining with markers, so I ended up painting this (which took ages) with about ten thin layers of acrylic.

Internal planks are walnut, which I stained red, once, with permanent marker in about 2 minutes....

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Edited by Tim Curtis
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  • 2 weeks later...

I am going to try something new with the planking on this model.

The kit comes with precut planks, which is SO helpful. Its basically a sheet of veneer which has been laser cut.  But the wood is not partic great. I think its Annegri? It has a large pronounced grain, and is not as hard as I would like. See below.

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So I am going to try a cheap, efficient way to replace the kit planks with swiss pear planking. I purchased on ebay a 5m x 25mm length of swiss pear veneer. Its solid wood but only about 0.6mm thick, which is the same thickness as the kit planking. Its from a German company ( https://ebay.com.au/usr/support-center24) and cost about $10 AUD. The neat thing is that it comes with a layer of "iron-on" glue on the back, and is VERY flexible. I am hoping that I will be able to fix it in place without having to steam, or using CA, or pins....but simply with the flat head of a soldering iron. So this should be super cheap, super easy way of getting beautiful swiss pear planking on my model. Here is what the veneer looks like. It comes rolled up in a box. Took about 10 days to get here from Germany.

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Edited by Tim Curtis
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The next step is to start cutting out the planks in swiss pear to match the precut planks in the kit. This is really easy and takes about 5 or 10 mins per plank.

I glued the kit plank to the strip of pear with UHU, so that they can be easily separated later. Then carefully cut around the plank with a sharp scalpel.

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Finally I gently sanded around the edge of the two planks while they are still stuck together so that they are exactly the same shape. I used a nail file stick.

Then gently separate them, and hey presto, I have a plank in swiss pear that matches the Annegri kit plank exactly. Two finished examples set out below.

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It still remains to see if the "iron on" glueing process will work. But preliminary tests have been encouraging.

 

Tim.

 

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  • 1 month later...
  • 3 months later...
  • 3 weeks later...

I have made the decision that I am not going to build this model as the Phoenix, but instead I am going to build her as a typical late 18th century British brig of war.

The kit is brilliant, but its not, as far as I can tell, actually based on drawings of the real Russian Brigantine Phoenix.

 

Furthermore I am going to call her Rosalind, after my wife.

So, I found I found a little pear wood caryatid online from VHobby on ebay that I have adapted to be her figurehead. You can see the original here.

https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fulk%2Fitm%2F202325451573

 

I confess to being very pleased with the result. Way, way exceeded my expectations. The front of the body was already CNC carved as bought, but her sides and back I had to do with a tiny dremel carving attachment and a scalpel. Feel like I accidentally created a little 30mm high Rodin or Degas! Apologies for scrappy photos taken on my phone. 

 

 

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Edited by Tim Curtis
Slightly better photos added.
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Would you suggest this kit to a beginner? I am in the process of finishing up my first wooden ship (1:100) that came with a precut hull that I did not plank, but have been tossing around the idea of planking my next ship, and I really like the idea of pre-cut planks as I have no idea what I am doing in that regard.

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I am currently building this model also. IMO it would be great for a beginner as it does make for a beautiful model BUT you must understand:

 

 You will learn zero skills from this kit as far as wooden ship building goes. All the skill learning stuff is laser cut and formed for you. It is really more like building a plastic model using wood. It is a great little kit 

 

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5 hours ago, Tim Curtis said:

I have made the decision that I am not going to build this model as the Phoenix, but instead I am going to build her as a typical late 18th century British brig of war.

The kit is brilliant, but its not, as far as I can tell, actually based on drawings of the real Russian Brigantine Phoenix.

 

Furthermore I am going to call her Rosalind, after my wife.

So, I found I found a little pear wood caryatid online from VHobby on ebay that I have adapted to be her figurehead. You can see the original here.

https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.ebay.com%2Fulk%2Fitm%2F202325451573

 

I confess to being very pleased with the result. Way, way exceeded my expectations. The front of the body was already CNC carved as bought, but her sides and back I had to do with a tiny dremel carving attachment and a scalpel. Feel like I accidentally created a little 30mm high Rodin or Degas! Apologies for scrappy photos taken on my phone in improper light. 

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Love it! Great job and a great name.

 

I am basically going the same route as you. I am having real issues following the masts and yard assembly and just find it woefully lacking is many areas. I flew through the hull construction but the itty bitty translation sheet to English is just too much for these old eyes. So because she is a Brigatine I broke out my Syren rigging plan. 

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@Warnerade: depends on what your goals are. There's some who like to scratchbuild a model using 1 block of wood, original plans and a knife. There are some who like to make their own ropes or sails. But if your primary goal is to make a nice model without too much difficulty, the master korabel kits are perfect. And while building you still learn enough techniques useful for when you decide to take on the more difficult kits later. You will still be facing enough challenging problems to solve to make it an interesting build. Imho it is a nice step towards the nonprefabplank kits. The most important thing is to enjoy building it. Succes with deciding and have fun!

Edited by Dutchman
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  • 1 month later...

Hi everyone,

 

22 hours ago, Richmond said:

Korabel state that if you buy from Russia, you will not get instructions in English, is this correct?

That is correct. I contacted them recently asking for english instructions because my kit had Russian only. They sent pdf's in english no problem. They also suggested to buy kits directly from their site. I checked and it comes much cheaper than buying elsewhere and you get the highest spec kit with english instructions. Also Avos will be available internationally in two months time and they are working on two new kits already. 

 

Peter

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  • 2 years later...

Here is a long delayed update on this build.

I have altered the kit significantly.

I added some of my own planking to create the wale.

Also added my own figurehead, see above for details.

Also my own planking above the wale.

Pictures pretty self explanatory.

 

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  • 2 months later...

Update on this little project. 

Reminder that I am building this as a British Brig of late 18th century, not as a Russian ship. (The Master Korabel design is not based on a real Russian ship. There are no historical drawings of the Russian ship Phoenix to base a model on, as far as I am aware). So I feel free to improvise!!

I have completed the coppering of the hull.

I have finished the treenailing on exposed timber.

Beginning to install some moulded rails.

Using a neat little scraper I purchased from Falconet's website to give the rails a profile. Note I am not using the material provided in the kit for these rails. 

Poor quality pictures taken on my phone...but give some idea of progress.

 

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Edited by Tim Curtis
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  • 3 weeks later...

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