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San Francisco Cross Section by Osmosis - Artesania Latina - Scale 1:50

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I just got this from amazon today and can't wait to get at it. The box was a little damaged and had been opened previously so I think it was a return. The contents were well packed and still in the original shrink wrap so I think it will be fine.


I have only found a couple of build logs for this one and none of those were done to completion so I guess I am on my own on this one. I can already see quite a few changes/"improvements" that will make this an interesting build for me. As others have pointed out historical accuracy is not what this kit was made for.


I will get started in earnest tomorrow night. Hope to see you all then.20181010_200925.thumb.jpg.ad2fa6e46a0cd284b4c6bd817a645206.jpg20181010_201032.thumb.jpg.c17358568f2c7528a26064053aa79241.jpg20181010_201324.thumb.jpg.2b47324d48dc84db59294b02a445832e.jpg

Edited by Osmosis
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Well I got home from work and got started. First I opened the package containing the beautifully laser cut well labeled sheets. Nice crisp cuts, each sheet cut all the way through with enough tabs to hold the pieces securely in place, but not so many that it made it difficult to get them out.20181011_183445.thumb.jpg.c5c30b574d586499b37f6d3c156aed49.jpg

I started with the keel and frames that I would need for the first part of the assembly. I have never cared for exposed plywood edges but, so many parts in this kit are made of plywood that it will be a monumental task to cover them all so I will have to deal with them one at a time.


As I said the frames and keel parts a nicely cut but once I got them out I noticed the very heavy charring. It took me quite a bit of time and sanding just to halfway clean up just the surfaces that will be visible once the kit is assembled.


Well that is it for tonight. I hope to get started on a little bit of assembly tomorrow.


Till then thanks for looking in.

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The kit instructions make no provisions or mention of planking the inner hull. I know this would have been done in the real world. My question is this.


Would the planking simply be placed on the inside surface of the frames or would some supporting structure been built between the frames and then be planked over leaving a portion of the frame visible?


The reason I ask is the rather drastic thickening of the frames as they descend to the keel would make for a very large gap between inner and outer planking.



Edited by Osmosis
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Well a little actual assembly tonight. I know it might seem like overkill to break out the building dock to set 4 frames but this thing is great. Its like having 5 extra hands and really simple to use.


First frame drying.


And the second 30 minutes later. The one sheet of frames was a little warped in the package so I clamped it to the jig just as a precaution. My sanding block makes a pretty decent strong back.


With all of the alignment marks it really takes out the guess work.



The lower deck dry fitted. Dropped right in, no trimming at all.


Its way past my bedtime so tomorrow I will start planking the lower deck and figure out how I am going to plank the inside hull.

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Hi Art,

Below the upper deck the inside hull doesn't need planking. If you go to page 20/2 of the manual, (where they show where the accessories are added) you can see some pictures of what the inside looks like. Also, If you decide to add it, you may run into trouble with the cannons on the lower deck,

Cheers, Peter

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Well the dogs let me sleep in until 8:55 this morning so I am getting kind of a late start.


Thanks for the reply Peter and to all those who liked this thread. Tom good to see you are still lurking about. We still need to get together for breakfast one Sunday.


Peter, I gave it a lot of thought while tossing and turning last night. Even though I am pretty sure that a ship of this size would have had some inner planking I decided to forgo it at least for the lower deck. I may still add some timber framing on the middle deck for the gun ports.





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I know I am old but I did not think I had gotten that slow. This little bit of planking turned into an all day affair. Ok so I did get 4 loads of laundry done and make myself breakfast and lunch but still.


I did actually cut the planks and laid them in a simple 3 plank shift instead of drawing on the butt joints with a pencil as the instructions would have you do it.


Deck dry fitted into frames


Maybe next time I will even remember to lay out the joints so they fall on the frames! Duh. This is the hold deck so I have two more chances to get it right.



Or at least half way between them. I would not want to try laying out a joint on the end most frames.


Peter, How much fairing did you need to do? It seems that just a little bit on the extreme lower portion of the forward most frame should do it.


Till Tomorrow

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Hi Art,

Not sure what you mean about fairing. From memory I don't think I faired anything, just cleaned the burn marks off as the parts came out of the laser cut panels.

I did enjoy this build, just be careful with the sharp ends at the top. I managed to break one off and had a bugger of a time reconnecting it properly. It's looking good.

Cheers, Peter

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Thanks for all the likes and comments. Believe me Peter I have been keeping a very watchful eye on the tips of the frames.


Even with our after church breakfast club and then spending a few hours shopping with the Admiral I did manage to get a little done today. First I experimented with a couple different methods for put the deck bungs in.



I made a little deck sample and tried out two different drilling and filling methods but in the end I think at this scale and with my already stiff fingers the 0.5 mechanical pencil (left most and upper right corner) is going to be the winner. I have never done it this way before so if anyone has a method for laying them out nice and straight I am all ears.



Then it was on to finishing the deck. The instructions call for laying the deck planking right up to the hull planking. However as you can see in the pic the sub deck stops well short of the edge of the frames and I have already got the planks overhanging the edge.20181014_212911.thumb.jpg.ca204a3d27cd81941116565c0da38feb.jpg

So I edge glued some 1/8" square basswood to the sub deck.



Then a little sanding and now there is a place to lay that last row of planks. I am sure that once everything is together the gap would hardly be noticeable but it would drive me nuts just knowing it was there.


That is it for tonight.

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Well Fixed one problem and found another. 20181015_221417.thumb.jpg.cc8690d466c4b65bbf23a0bcea4ebbb2.jpg

Last row of planks on and waiting for someone (Me) to layout the nails.



I have read in other builds that the mid and upper decks sat on only the fore and aft most knees. So I wanted to check that and install any shims before it was too late. What I found is that not only is that the case, but.....20181015_221724.thumb.jpg.962a2026f7938d21c9a103b8ee779a91.jpg

The mid deck tilts about 3/16" running down hill from stern to bow. Also checking the upper deck found it runs about 1/8" from stern to bow. Both when compared to the lower deck. The center deck beams are not in place in these pictures but if you hold a straight edge on all four knees there is about a 1/16" gap between the center two knees and the deck.


There are no pictures in the instructions that show this much of a side view. Could this be intentional? Has anyone else run across this?


Should the decks be parallel to one another? I know that is not always the case. The obvious fix is to file down the aft two knees until the deck sits on all four frames then add shims if needed.


The good news is that the mid deck runs all the way to the outside edge of the frames.


Thanks and best regards,


Edited by Osmosis
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Hi Art,

I don't think you need to add shims anywhere (I didn't). I don't believe the decks are supposed to run parallel. Again from memory they were slightly curved in both directions & they were glued on all 4 frames. It did make clamping the deck's down to maintain the shape interesting...

Cheers, Peter

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Welcome aboard,


I have been looking in on your build also. From what I have been able to find on the web this does not really detail a specific section of the ship so much as it does a compressed version of details mashed into a few frames. So I will not be going for any kind of historical accuracy. But I do plan on having fun with it and in the end hopefully turn out a nice display.


Best regards

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Well I have not had much time to work on this in the past few days but what little time I had was spent on planking the other two decks. The upper deck is finished except for final sanding. The extreme outboard edges of the middle deck will need to wait for the support beams to be in so that the remaining planks can be fitted around the frames.




I also tried to draw in some tree nails. I must say my first attempt at it is a complete disappointment. If I could figure a way to get rid of them I would and just forget about doing the rest. I know there must be a better way. Oh well, practice, practice, practice.


Is there a tutorial on tree nails? At least I was smart enough to start on the lower deck where they will be fairly well hidden.


Thats all for now.


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Thanks for all the likes and kind words guys.


Well in the end I decided to forget the tree nails and following Jim's advice sanded them out. I then glued the lower deck in place and installed the cross beams for the middle deck. Then it was time to make the support stanchions. The kit supplies some 3mm walnut dowels that you are supposed to thin down in the middle for this purpose. While going through the supplied lumber I realized that they only gave me 1 of the required 4 dowels.


I did not like the look that the dowel gave anyway so I decided to turn the needed stanchions. It was then that I remembered I did not have a lathe. So on to "offer up" I went and found someone about 5 miles away selling a pretty much brand new Dremel Lathe for $50.00. I know it is less than average quality but for the price I figured if I have to toss it after this project I won't really cry about it.


The larger turning in the upper right is a sample I made from 1/4" Basswood in less than 5 minutes.


The only material I had that was near the right size was 3/16" Basswood. Like I said the 3mm dowel looked way under sized the 3/16" stock looks huge laying next to it.


I need 16 stanchions total here are the blanks laid out for 2 each.


Oh did I mention that the lathe did not come with any gouges. Here is a picture of the first piece chucked up and ready to go. Also pictured are my turning tools. A 1/2 round tapered needle file, a 1/2" wide emery board, and my exacto saw.


And 10 minutes later the first pair of stanchions. I know there is a lot of waste but I was not sure what the final length of each stanchion would be as each pair is different.


Not to bad for a cheap lathe no proper tools and a 62 year old guy that has not done any wood turning since High School wood shop.


Because this kit models the deck sheer all of the pairs of stanchions are slightly different lengths so they need to be trimmed and fitted individually.


I am not sure why but they look really chubby in the photos. They do not look that big in person. I guess it is true the camera adds 10 pounds. Anyway I think they look better than the puny kit supplied dowels would. I managed to get 2 more done tonight so that leaves 4 more for tomorrow.


I decided when I started this kit that I would not use paint and keep stain to a minimum but since I do not have any small walnut stock I will stain these so they stand out a little.


All in all the little lathe did just fine very quiet and very, very little vibration. For the price I am quite happy.


Thanks for looking in.

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I have a bunch of 1/8" bass wood laying about so I made a couple of stanchions to compare with the 5/16" ones. The 1/8" is still slightly larger than the 3mm stock provided in the kit.20181024_191310.thumb.jpg.a8fcdc7d632f663b2311c41039278267.jpg

It requires a little more patience to set the smaller stock up in the lathe and a much lighter hand while turning.20181024_185240.thumb.jpg.6de10a9d709b762c6ac6310c1f1a251a.jpg

As you can see I made no attempt to shape the barrel this time. These are only the first samples to see if I could even turn 1/8" material.20181024_191050.thumb.jpg.582c564a088d97810fd31d3f4ec0159e.jpg

I think they look much better. The difference is a little over 3-1/2" at full scale. Since the setup is so finicky I think I will wait till Saturday to do the final turnings that way I have the whole day uninterrupted. In the mean time there are plenty of crates and barrels to work on.



Edited by Osmosis
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At last some progress. But I am going to give you one more stanchion update. They are in!


I think they came out OK.


And here is where I take another deviation from the instructions. They would have you stain and varnish the deck and stanchions at this point then install the middle deck more stain and varnish then the upper deck and stain and varnish again.  Then after all that turn to planking the hull.


It seems to me that the purpose of a cross section is to allow the inside to be viewed and admired. If I were to do things in the order the instructions suggest it would be impossible to get at the inside surface of the hull to sand or finish them at all. So my plan is to begin planking the hull now and continue to just below or even with the middle deck beams. Then sand the entire inside surface of the hull and apply poly to deck stanchions and bulkheads. Then install the middle deck and repeat the process until the planking is complete. This will also allow me to install some of the interior hardware and fittings on each interior deck much easier with open access from the top.


So let the planking begin.



That is as far as 10 strips of planking got me. Is it just me or does it always seem like you are not going to have enough?


This is my first planking job so I was wondering. When double planking a hull as in this case, gluing and clamping the inner planking is fairly straight forward. But without access to the frames to clamp to how does one secure the finish planking while the glue dries?


Another slight change in plans. Because of the hanging knees being part of the frames the middle deck can not be installed or removed once it is fully planked. Again the instructions would have you install the sub deck then do all of the planking, scraping and sanding in place. My sausage fingers are not made for that so I planked the deck as far as the first plank that interfered with the slots. This plank I laid in place with no glue then continued with the small filler planks. Once the unglued plank was removed and the slots were trimmed I put the deck in place and shaped the two unglued planks to fit. I then removed the deck and pressed the two planks into place. This allowed me to scrape and sand the deck out on the work bench rather than trying to work between the frames.


When I am ready to install it all I have to do is place it in and glue in the last two planks.


Hopefully thing will progress at a more steady pace from here on out.


Thanks for stopping by.

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Hi Art, It's looking good.

Just a few words of caution. Because the frames are only connected at the base, they have a tendency not to be parallel the higher up you go. When you start planking the outer hull without the deck in place, just make sure the frames are in the correct position. Also when you plank the deck before assembling it into the model, it may get a bit more difficult to get the curves right when fitting it onto the frames. And finally I didn't need clamping for the 2nd planking of the hull. There is no bending involved so just holding them for a few seconds was enough to lock them into place.

Cheers, Peter


Edited by Peter Bloemendaal
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That was the reason I wanted to make the deck removable. So that I could clamp it in place while planking the hull above the lower deck. Once the planking is complete up to that point I will remove the deck, do any interior work then glue the deck into place and repeat for the top deck. Not sure you can see it in the pic but I stopped planking last night when I reached the lower deck level for that exact reason. Maybe I am over thinking it (I usually do). But hopefully it will work out the way it looks in my head.


I will be stopping at Lowes on my way home to get a couple of the clamps you used to hold the center of the deck down though.


Thanks again

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The planking is progressing nicely. In the mean time, I am getting to the point where I will be gluing down the middle deck and I was wondering. Would there have been rings or eye bolts permanently installed in the cargo hold deck or bulkheads for lashing down loose cargo? If so now would be the time to put them in. The instructions don't call for them but if they would have been there it is an easy enough detail to include. The kit does include crates and barrels and spare billets of lumber to put in the hold it seems there would be a way to tie them down.



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The first layer of planking is on up to the middle deck. All the rough sanding is done for now. The interior needs a little more light sanding then a couple coats of matte poly.20181031_201129.thumb.jpg.6df188fcbd699fc415abd48c5d8e9b3f.jpg

If it looks like the front left stanchion is misaligned that is because it is. My sausage fingers and lack of attention caused a slight accident. I knocked it loose. Once I am done with the sanding I will glue it back in place.


I will finish sanding the outer hull when the first layer of planking is complete.



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Not at all.


Matte Finish Polyurethane for sealing and finishing. It seems most guys prefer water based poly I still like oil based. There is a bit more clean up involved but I feel like it goes on nicer for some reason. I did use wipe on poly on my last project and could become a fan of that also.



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