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HMS Halifax 1768 by alde - Lumberyard Kit - 1/48 scale - Based on Harold Hahn Drawings and Book


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For years before ever became interested in ship modeling I have admired the photos I have seen of Harold Hahn''s ships. Years ago I was able to see some of his models in the Maritime Museum in Norfolk Virginia and the memory stuck with me. I think these little Colonial Schooners are beautiful ships. I bought a few of Mr. Hahns plans from his son and had planned on starting with the Hannah from scratch. Then I saw the build log of the beautiful Halifax build by rafine on this forum. Before that I didn't know there was any kind of kit available.  I had to have one.

 

Late last year I went ahead and purchased the kit with the laser cut frames in Swiss Pear. The kit looks really nice and the wood and laser cutting look really good. My plan is to build this while I continue on with my Glad Tidings Schooner. I will be updating that build log soon too.

 

Here are some pictures of the kit parts.

 

Overall Parts.jpg

Wood Stock and Misc Parts.jpg

Framing Jig.jpg

Parts Sheets.jpg

Resin Parts.jpg

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I started putting some frames together using the 9 parts for each frame and the plan sheet as a guide to make sure they keep to the correct dimensions. After I got a couple of frames together I sanded them to approximate thickness as Hahn shows in his book The Colonial Schooner 1763-1775. Then I tried setting them in the building jig and noticed they did not fit well. I compared the kit jig to the plans and found that it was off by a bit too much for me to be comfortable with. I headed off to the hardware store and bought a sheet of 1/4" MDX and rubber cemented the jig from the plan to it and cut out my own on the scroll saw. A couple of hours later I had a jig I was happy with.

4 Frames in Jig.jpg

Assembled Frame.jpg

Frame Components with Parts Sheet.jpg

Frame Components .jpg

Framing Jig Comparison.jpg

Framing Jig from Plans.jpg

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Not much new but I have the first 5 frames sitting in the jig with the keel set on it just to see how she looks. What I have been doing with the frames is assemble the 9 frame parts, then rubber cement the drawing to the frame and take it to the oscillating spindle sander and sand it to the lines with 150 grit. I love the spindle sander and it does the frames great. The build is going along great and I love the kit so far. This is going to be a great step toward my goal of scratch building a larger more complicated ship.

 

IMG_0282.JPG

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Just a quick update. I forgot to mention an important step in the frame building process. They need to be sanded to a thickness of 3/16". The laminated pieces come out to 1/4" before they are sanded down using a full sheet of 150 grit sandpaper on a flat surface. You can also see how much the frames need to be sanded to match the frame outline on the plans. The more I use the oscillating spindle sander the more I like it. With a light enough grit it's easy to control.

 

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3 minutes ago, mtaylor said:

Al,

Dave always cuts the wood a bit "thick"....  If you have a power drum sander, you can dimension before cutting and gluing.  Looking great on the jig.   I think you have the hang of this scratch building thing.

I'm really enjoying it Mark. It's a nice kit. In the Colonial Schooner book by Hahn he thins the assembled frames in the same way. It only takes a few minutes per frame and works great.

 

I'm looking forward to starting a scratch built project. I think by the time I get through this I'll be about ready. The frames wouldn't really be that much more work. It will just take a bit of practice to get accurate cuts for the keel parts and such. I haveven the tools. I just need to learn to use them. 

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I've started glueing some frames to the building jig. What I've been doing is getting the distance from the top of the keel to the table top that the jig is sitting on by using the framing plan. The frame extensions that go into the slots on the jig are a tad long. After gluing in the first and last full frame's into the jig I just sand the frame extensions of each frame until the keel just seats in the slot without rocking. I just work slowly and check the fit often until it's just right. Then I clamp the frame to the keel (without glue) then glue the frame extensions to the jig. Each frame has a perfect fit to the keel. Once all the full frames are guled to the jig the keel can be glued to the frames. It's going very smoothly. I know purists don't consider this true POF building but it sure works well.

  

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm almost done with all the full frames and am pretty happy with it so far. Once the full frames are all glued into the building jig it will be time to glue in the keel assembly. That leads me to a bit of a dilemma. I know for sure I'm going to plank at least one plank below the shear strake. I have also seen some models with one or two planks up from the keel. I'm thinking of doing this. From what I see from other models only planked one below the shear plank they don't bother cutting a rabbit. If I do a plank or two up from the keel I will definitely need a rabbit. Any thoughts?

 

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10 minutes ago, lmagna said:

Great progress Al

Good to see you are looking  ahead, at this rate you will be planking by tomorrow and rigging by Friday!:D You still may not be able to keep up with Denis though.

Lou, I've been waiting to see some progress on your Provedence. I found infomation on your ship you may not have including a decent profile drawing and some descriptions. Also a painting showing a boat on deck. You may already have it all but tomorrow I'll try to get it scanned and email it to you. If it's good stuff great. If not no loss.

 

I hope I can get to planking in a couple of weeks. The fore and aft frames will be a challenge not to mention the rabbit.

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Thanks for thinking of me Al. Anything is possible as to what may be found on the Providence you saw almost everything I had at lunch last week. I do have some more on my computer that I never printed out but I am always looking for anything. 

 

As for the build. I may have to leave off on that a little longer. I try almost every day but I don't last long until ghosts and memories take over and I have to leave the room. I will need to find some way to get over that before I can make any progress. I'll keep trying as it is a very important build for me and I would hate to let it go, but I just don't know any way to rush it. Mean while it is helping by hanging out here and seeing normal people at work and showing me how to do it right. I at least learn something new each day.

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You'll get there Lou. Give it time. Maybe you could just concentrate on your research for now and the rest will come in time.

 

I'll get what I have to you. I just need to figure out how to use my scanner. Its one of those combined with a printer and copier. I think I used the scanner 2 times since I got it. If all else fails I'll bring them with me next time we get together and you can just borrow them.

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Thanks guys. I will for sure cut it flat on the bench. What do you think about the plank or two at the keel? It will still leave frames exposed to show the structure but may help make it look more “finished”. I’m still going back and forth about it.

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I think the planking is your choice, Al.   I've seen where one side is completely open, other with varying degrees of planking.   There's also complete planking on both sides but leave some strakes off on one side.   Have look at Hahn's builds and see what you think.  

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I know it's not much of an update on the build but it felt like a real milestone for me. I was really stressing about cutting the rabbit but I think it went pretty well.

 

Using the framing plan as a guild I drew in the rabbit with a straight edge and ships curve. Once I was happy with the way it looked and adjusting it here and there I clamped the steel staight edge to the straight part of the keel and started making light cuts with a No.11 blade on an angle. I did all 4 straight lines then started carving out the V-groove. Then for the stem I did basically the same thing only free hand this time to make the curve. After most of the wood was removed I used the corner of my steel straight edge to scrape out the groove to clean it up. Both side look pretty decent if I must say so myself. 

 

Now that that is done I will make sure everything fits well and looks good then glue the keel assembly to the frames. Cutting the rabbit was about all I could do today. 

 

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Thanks Mark. By adjustment I guess you guys are talking about depth? I figured I would have to do that.  I have a set of small, curved rifler files that should work great for that. I glued the keel to the whole frames today but haven't touched it since. I'll start on the rest of the frames Monday. I'm looking forward to that. 

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55 minutes ago, canoe21 said:

Hello Al 

 

Just found your build log on the HMS Halifax, it looks like you are having a great time building from a Harold M. Hahn set of plans. From here your frames and rabbit look great. WELL DONE.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       I am off to rather a slow start in my Oliver Cromwell build, just too many home put off chores that have piled up on me over the last year or so. The end is finally in sight and soon will be able to spend more time in my Old Ship Yard. I do have the center set of frames sequence cut out on the scroll saw and now need to sand the ends down to the mark before I can start gluing them up.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Your HMS Halifax build will surely be a great help to me when I reach that stage,                                                                                  ENJOY.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Regards   Lawrence

 

 

Lawrence,  I am having a great time with this build. It's really rewarding to see it come together and I'm learning a lot from it. I'm looking forward to your Oliver Cromwell coming together. Your making great progress. I really like the Hahn method and plan to do at least a couple more like this. The Cromwell is going to build into a beautiful ship and I may build it one day. I think maybe the Hannah may be next though. From there I don't know. I have a pretty good stash of kits I may end up finding new homes for so I can focus on scratch building but who knows.

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I have a question for those with more experience with this type of build. I'm doing the half frames now and have 3 in place now. In Hahn's book he shows these frames being trunneled in place for added strength. I plan to do this but was wondering if I should drill all the way through both frames and pin them together or just drill into the deadwood? To me it makes sense to go all the way through. 

 

I was just re-reading some of the book and see that when he installed the keel he uses epoxy. I used yellow titebond for mine. When I was doing some preliminary fairing a couple of the frames popped loose. I wish I had paid more attention when I did this. I may drill and pin each one through the inside of the hull into the keel for extra strength. 

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