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Chuck

Medway Longboat - 1742 -1/2" scale - by Chuck - (FINISHED!!)

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I am not sure yet if I will.  But yes at this scale it is certainly a possibility.  On a fully planked hull they would be very hard to see however.  So I may hold off and just give it a try on the partially planked version.

 

One thing I forgot to mention in my previous post which is very important,  is not to forget to sand off the laser char on the two piece frames.  But not the whole thing....

 

Just remove the char from the tips of the floors and the top timbers as shown below.   This will be difficult to do later. Doing it before you assemble the frames is best.  Just be careful not to break away the frame center from the top timbers.  The remaining char is best removed when fairing the hull as it can be used to help you see certain areas that need more fairing before planking.  

 

twopieceframe.jpg

 

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A bit of a milestone.  All of the frames are completed and assembled.  I have not applied any wipe on poly yet, but will do so before gluing the keel  into position.  I am holding off because I want to build the second version of the keel assembly with the actual lap joints.  That is the one I will actually use.  So I should have an update soon with those details.  But for now...I have tested all of the frames and all fits well.  The photo below shows the simpler keel assembly dry fit.  Hopefully you can get a sense of the hull shape now and the graceful sheer.  Because this is an early longboat it has a much more pleasing shape than the other Long boat model I made.  I have gently flipped it "right-side-up" in the build board so you can hopefully see the sheer and shape better.

 

Once I complete the other keel and glue it to the frames....fairing and planking can begin.  Its coming together quickly.  In fact,  other than the plans,  this will constitute the starter package as seen in the photos.  Everything you need to get this far.

 

If you have any questions let me know.

 

allframestest.jpg

allframestest1.jpg

allframestest2.jpg

 

 

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I can see how graceful the lines of this hull are going to be. Regarding the laser cutting, you have shown clearly what is possible and what should be the standard for other kit manufacturers. Perhaps the better ones will get the message and follow your lead.

 

Thanks for the thoughts about my own work, and yes perhaps we could work out something down the road.

 

Michael

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I think she will be a pretty longboat.  If you recall,  there will be two options for assembly of the three keel parts.  The simpler version has the parts simply butt together and that is fine.  But for those who want to try a bit more ambitious joint, there will be some laser cut parts prepared with the beginnings of some lap joints.

 

I Have not removed any laser char from these pieces before "carving" and completing the lap joints.  In the photo below you can two of each part.  One shows the lap joint as prepared by the laser cutter.  The laser can not etch deep enough to complete the lap joint.  But you have the area laid out with precision so you only need to make it deeper.  You can remove the material until it is half the thickness on each side of the lap joint.  There are multiple ways you can do this depending on your skill level and what tools you have.  You could use a sherline mill for example.  In my case however,  I opted for the cheap yet effective sharp #11 blade.  I slowly sliced off little shavings until it was close to the correct depth.  Then I used a sanding stick to clean it up.

keellapjoints.jpg

Periodically, I stopped shaving and slicing to check how the lap joints fit together.  The two photos below show the two lap joints test fit together.  Just a little more to do and clean up and I have it.  One thing I would caution you on is not to rush it.  Dont get "close enough" and then think you can sand the outsides flush after you glue them together.  This would be very bad.  You would see the weird twisted shape that would develop and the other slotted keel parts wouldnt fit onto it properly and that error of impatience would snowball as your project moves forward.  Keep in mind that these are extreme close-ups.....you can really see the wood grain.  But once the finish is applied....that will disappear.  I will take photos again once the remaining pieces are added and the bolts are added.  ut after the glue dries on these three parts,  I will sand the laser char from the edges and clean it up.

 

stemlapjointtest.jpg

sternpostlapjointtest.jpg

 

and once again, here is a comparison of the two options for assembling the three keel sections.  The slotted parts will be added as soon as I clean it all  up.  You might also notice my change to the stern post so the model will use the more historically accurate method to attach the rudder.  The older photo is below and those changes arent shown.

 

IMG_3936.JPG

 

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Its the same but there isnt any finish on it yet.  Its all cedar which will appear different once a finish is applied.  The model is all cedar so far.    It could also just be my bad camera work!!!

 

Chuck

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I finished the second keel assembly today.  You can see the differences.  You will note that before gluing the transom into position I added the bolts for the lap joints on the keel.  There are once again several way to do this depending on your tastes.  The bolts would have been copper but I dont like the look of shiny copper on a model.  So I am using 20lb black fishing line.  It works very well.  You could substitute 22 gauge copper wire if you wish.  The bolts are only simulated in that they dont go all the way through.   You can of course do that as well.  But rather than risk the drill bit wandering, I decided to just drill shallow holes that were filled with the black mono-filament.   Then I used a straight razon to shave the excess away flush with the surface.  I sanded it with 320 grit sandpaper.  Then applied some wipe on poly.

 

Feel free to ask any questions.

 

Next I will glue the keel onto the frames and start fairing the frames for planking.

 

both keels.jpg

both keels1.jpg

both keels2.jpg

both keels3.jpg

 

 

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Chuck; How were the bolts done in real life? Did they use actual nuts and bolts? If so, the model railroad suppliers sell bolt head and nuts with a threaded stub castings, in many scales, if you want to go that route.

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That is a possibility but I am trying to keep the project at an intermediate level and trying to not over engineer it "out of the box".  So I am just going to stick with the usual ship model building practices to hopefully keep the costs down and difficulty level down.   But that doesnt mean that  anyone building her couldnt add those and "bash" the kit while discussing the merits and viability in their build logs.   That is what makes these group projects fun and educational.  

 

I couldnt tell you for sure how they were actually bolted because that info is not as detailed for these small open boats.  But I assume it was done the same way as in larger practice.   Probably using small 5/8" to 3/4" copper bolts.  Maybe someone could chime in here as well.  Mays book and other sources dont have a lot of info on that detail.  I am following and using the methods shown on the contemporary models  so a simple brass, copper or monofilament pin does the trick.

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I would think they would have used clenched nails, with copper roves or clench rings on the real thing but, not nuts. Those could be made with a punch, and thin copper sheet if you actually wanted to. Not part of the kit of course.

 

Kurt

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Today I glued the keel onto the frames.   You want to have a cup of water and a paint brush handy before you begin.  This is used to clean the excess glue from the joints after the keel is placed on top of the frames.  Before you begin, make sure that all of the frames are facing the correct direction.  The lettered frames face one way and the numbered frames face the other way.  I also recommend tat you do a few dry test runs before using the glue.  We are basically starting with the stern half of the frames first.  Practice placing the keel into position.  You will quickly discover that all of the frames are not lined up perfectly with their intended notches in the keel.  You will need yo work them in one direction or the other until the keel slips into all ten notches. 

 

Doing a few dry test runs will let you know which frames you will need to tend to once the glue is added.  Dont rush it.  You will have plenty of time to do this and tweak each frame if need be.  I found it easier to place a generous dab of glue on the end of the frames rather than in each slot of the keel.  Once seated properly clean off the excess glue and leave it to dry.

 

gluekeel.jpg

Once that dries, it will be time to slide the forward ten frames under the keel and repeat the same process.  Absolutely do a dry run with this.

 

gluekeel1.jpg

Once that glue dries, flip over the model and tape the two halves of the build board together along the joint.  DONT glue it.  Use a generous length of tape and several pieces.  I like to use the reinforced tape with the string in it for added strength.

 

gluekeel2.jpg

Then its time to fair the hull.  Its somewhat fragile as many of you who have built the other models like this will attest.  But it is pretty sturdy.  Use either 320 or 220 grit sand paper to fair the hull.  I wouldnt use a coarser grit because it will grab the frames and possibly split them etc.  But use a light touch and proceed slowly and carefully just like you would with any other fairing.

 

Here is my model after it was completely faired.  You can use the laser char on the edge of each frame as a guide as you continue fairing as well.

fairhull.jpg

fairhull1.jpg

I mentioned earlier how another builder familiar with this type of model gave me a building tip.  He said to use the tape on each side of the frame to help strengthen it while you fair  the hull.  I can report that it was a big help and I recommend that you guys do it as well.  In addition, because so many people have built the pinnace , the original longboat or the barge, I have had many other tips and experiences shared.  One additional tip was really good.  In the photo below you can see a small 3/32" wide by 1/32" strip glued to each frame where the attachment is.  This is usually where the frame would break if you are a heavy-handed sander.  The scrap strip was glued with tite-bond.  It really made it sturdy and I didnt worry at all about splitting the little tab connecting the center of the frame.  Once I was done fairing the hull,  they were removed using either of these two methods.  You can apply some rubbing alcohol and let it just fall off with a little coaxing.  You could also just leave it there.  There will be a plank covering it inside and out and it wont be seen.  Just keep it to 3/32" wide or less.  It wont make it any more difficult to remove the frame centers later on.  I just used this strip on the five single frames but you could do it on all of them.  But its up to you.  I faired the hull with no breakage.  

 

fairhull2.jpg

 

Now its time to line off the hull and start planking!!!!!  YIPPEE :)

 

 

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Beautiful concept as usual. I like using the little tips discovered when building previous models. Work always so precise and beautiful. Thank you for your work.

I'm waiting for what's next

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She’s coming along great. Your stuff always looks so darn neat and clean, even under close ups ( or are you photoshoping everything). It’s interesting to see the subtle differences evolving in your builds like the supports by the transom and stem on the build board. It’s gonna be fun when it’s ready for us.

 

Kurt

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Thanks Kurt.....Photoshop......LOL

 

Dont take my word for it Kurt,  you can judge for yourself when you come by the shop.   Its going together without a hitch so that makes it a lot easier.

 

Chuck

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Now as I mentioned, this project will have pre-spiled planks.  There will be no reason for anyone to line off the hull and spile the planks themselves.  But I still need to do it.  So if anyone is interested I will post that process here with some photos.  Even though this is just a small longboat vs a large frigate, the hull must be lined off for planking and I must create a plan to follow before I cut any wood for planking.  The method described below is the same thing I did for Cheerful and it will be the same thing I do for the Winchelsea.  The one difference however, is there will not be a need to split this hull into two or three belts of planking.  Its size dictates that the entire hull will be treated as just one belt of planking.  

 

Step one is the easy part,  after doing some research to determine the correct width for your planking you must decide how many strakes will fit at mid ship (dead flat).  This will be different depending on the subject you are modeling but once you look at steele or whatever sources....you can make that determination.  For the longboat,  I have decided that it will have 9 strakes.  This is typical for these boats.  Some have 8.....and some have 10.  But this one will have 9 strakes.

 

Step 2....

Cut some thin tick strips from paper.  Hold them along the edge of the frames.  You will need to mark the overall length of the frame from the keel rabbet to the sheer.  Its very easy to do.

 

liningout.jpg

Step 3...Take that tick strip and lay it on top of your planking fan.  Because we know that this area will need to be split evenly into nine planks, its just a matter of sliding down the fan until it fills the space up.  Then mark the strip with tick marks.  The black horizontal lines on the planking fan were just put there so I have some reference to help me keep the strip level rather than angled.

 

liningout1.jpg

Step 4 ..Take that strip back over to the same frame and transfer all those tick marks onto the frame edge.

 

liningout2.jpg

All of the frames have been marked except for the htree frames at the bow and the three frames at the stern.

liningout3.jpg

 

Now you shouldnt do this to every frame.  You should repeat this exercise for every frame except  for the last three aft and the first three forward frames.  Those three frames on each end of the hull are tricky.  There is a much easier and accurate way to determine the run of the planks for these areas.  Consider for example that at the bow, each remaining frame may not even contain all 9 strakes.  So measuring their length and dividing by nine doesnt work.  

 

This next step will not only allow you see the run of the planks at the bow and stern, it will also let you double check that the tick marks you just made on all of the other frames are correct.  You will soon be able to make adjustments to those as well.  This is exactly what I do on every hull before planking.

 

Step 5....Use some thin strips of black tape to visually create the run of the nine strakes.  I bought some typical black art tape that was very sticky.  Its like black masking tape.  I cut very thin strips from it about 3/64" wide.  These were used on the hull to determine the run of every strake.  I do half of the hull at a time.  First the aft side. Then from mid-ship to the bow.  Make sure there is no dust on the frames so the tape strips stick really well.   Some people prefer to use string that is glued to each frame.  Use whatever method works best for you.  I like the tape because it is easily re-positioned.

 

I used the tick marks I just made on each frame to position the thin tape strips.  I worked my way aft from mid-ship until I reached those last three frames with no tick marks on them.  Basically I "just eyeball it".  I just continue running the tape onto each frame in what I think is the natural and correct path for that plank.  DONT WORRY.....REST ASSURED THAT IT WILL BE ALL WRONG.  But after you place all of the tape for the nine strakes on the hull like this, you will be able to see where its screwed up.  You can carefully adjust each tape line until everything looks good.  Adjust and tweak until the tape runs smooth and graceful across those last three frames and right off the edge of the model.  Take your time with this.  Adjust them mid-ship as well because you will be able to see where some of your tick marks were wrong.

 

Than take a sharp pencil and mark the edge of the tape to create the reference lines on those three last frames.  Also do that for any corrected marks mid ship.

 

Aft side...

 

liningout5.jpg

 

At the bow...

 

liningout4.jpg

 

It is a lot harder to describe this process in writing than it is to actually do it.  This didnt take that long and spending this time makes it much more likely that your planked hull will look right.  So if you have any questions let me know.  Its much easier to show how to do this in person.  Next I will describe how I take the marks on each frame and convert them into an actual spiled plank.  Maybe this Sunday:)

 

 

 

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Looking good chuck. I like your method of lining the hull out.  That’s a definite plan.

Here’s a tip, you said you are cutting thin strips of the tape. That isn’t necessary. You can get artist dry erase tape or what we use for scale airplanes call “chart Pak” tape. It comes in narrow strips down to 1/64” if you want. Here’s a link to some that is 3mm, but you can get whatever width that strikes your fancy. It’s cheap.

 

Chartpak tape link

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Thanks for the planking lesson Chuck. You have a way of describing things that make them easier to understand. Please do continue on with it for us beginners. This is going to  end a great project.

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Yes actually...but not many pictures.  But here are the images for setting the garboard strake in position.  The garboard and all of the other planks are laser cut.  They will already be spiled to shape.  Even so, they will need to be pre-bent to fit without forcing them into position.  Unlike the MS longboat kit, this model will be planked from the keel upwards.  The garboard strake is made up of two sections.  It is important to start with the aft section first.  Below you can see the aft section of the garboard strake with quite a bend in it.  This is needed and its important to do so before gluing.  

garboard.jpg

The plank is 1/32" thick and was bent using the same method I always employ.  I used a hair dryer to heat it up while I twisted it to shape.  Here is an image from the barge construction but its the same technique used here.  If its not twisted and bent enough....then just clamp it again and continue to shape it.  The one difference this time however, was that I used a sacrificial piece of scrap wood on top of the plank when I clamped it to the table.  The Cedar is very soft and the clamp would dent it easily.  So placing a piece of wood on top of the plank and then clamping it to the table prevents it from being dented.  This is just an arbitrary plank from the barge kit and not the garboard but you get the idea.

 

bendplank.jpg

Before gluing the aft section of the garboard in position, you must test it on the model.  Tweak it if needed but it shouldnt need much work.  One thing that will need to be done is to cut the forward end to length.  Because each model might vary slightly, I made this section extra long so it hangs over the frame as shown.  Just mark the plank on the center of the frame and cut it to length.  Do this AFTER twisting it to shape.  Then glue it into position.

 

garboard1.jpg

The second forward section of the garboard doesnt need to be adjusted in length at all.  This section is pre-bent and twisted and glued into position.  It is worth noting that you should bevel the edge of the garboard along the first 5 frames where it sits against the keel at the bow.  This makes for a tighter and cleaner fit in the rabbet.  Remember to test it before you glue it on the model after you bend it.  You should be able to see where the bevel is needed.  Here is a photo of the garboard completed with both sections glued onto the model.  The  butt seam between the sections was darkened with a pencil on one side.

 

garboard2.jpg

 

Here is a look at the forward end of the garboard.  You can see how nicely it fits into the rabbet.   I repeated this on the other side making sure they match.  It isnt too difficult when the planks are laser cut.  Remember that there are only 9 strakes per side.  So only eight more to go!!!:)  The garboard is the trickiest though because it sets the run for all of the other planks above it.  But if I wander slightly from my tick marks, I can correct those little issues as I move forward.  It is worth mentioning that you guys wont have any tick marks to rely on....unless you go through the exercise of lining out the hull as well.  I absolutely recommend it.  Your tick marks may not line up with mine exactly but if you wanted to give it a try with only nine strakes vs. 25 for a frigate......its good practice.

 

garboard3.jpg

 

 

 

 

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Hmm. I've got planks on my boat that look like that . . .

 

Thanks for the tutorial Chuck. I'll try that on the next garboard I install.

 

Harvey

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Thank you gentleman.  Planking continues.

 

I have completed 4 of the 9 strakes.  Each strake has two sections. A forward and an aft plank.  For the first 3 strakes working up from the keel, I started at the stern post and then added the bow section of the strake.  Each section is made a bit longer after adjusting the ends that tuck into the rabbet.  You need to cut the ends to length so they fall on a frame.  When placing the second plank in each strake, you must cut it to length so it butts into the first cleanly and tightly.  

garboard1.jpg

But now that I am working on the fourth strake I have switched and start at the bow.  The aft section of planking can now be run off the transom and sanded flush later.  You might see in the photos that I have yet to sand the last section of the fourth strake on one side.  I will continue up to the shear in this fashion.  Only five more strakes to go.  But even when you havent planked in a year it does come back to you quickly and get easier with each strake.

 

Here are some photos of how it looks today.  These photos show the Alaskan Yellow cedar really well.  

 

fourstrakes.jpg

fourstrakes1.jpg

fourstrakes2.jpg

fourstrakes3.jpg

fourstrakes4.jpg

fourstrakes5.jpg

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