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Albatros, plankings - Moved by Moderator

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Greetings,  I am building my first Intermediate level ship by Constructor, the Albatros.  The hull is mahogany planking.  I have been thinking about the shaping of the planks.  The book says to "moisten them slightly, run them over a 35 watt electric soldering iron.."  This seems totally inadequate to bend and form mahogany.   I was thinking I may need to steam heat them for a few minutes to make them pliable so not to break when shaping to the hull frame.   What experience and suggestions do you guys have with this?


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Greetings,  I found the Planking your Model article in ModelShipBuilding.com.  It gave me another piece I was puzzled about, the Spiling Strip.  I have read about that and not understood.  The little diagram use there made it clear.   Thanks.

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Have a look here: http://modelshipworldforum.com/ship-model-framing-and-planking-articles.php   There's several good articles on planking.

"The shipwright is slow, but the wood is patient." - me

Current Build:                                                                                             
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Greetings Ray. I soaked my mahogany planks for anywhere from 10 minutes to 45 or so and used an iron used by airplane builders to stretch the skin over the wings. Gets plenty hot and actually steams the plank into shape.

Worked well for me.

Having said that tho... read those articles... they are a wealth of info and it pays to pay attention to the details.


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  • 2 months later...

Hello Ray,

i builded the same Albatros and i'm nearly finished.

I put the planks about 30 minutes in an old 1 liter bottle with water. After that, they were so soft that I could stick them with some needles and glue. At strengthening bends like the bow, I used carefully a small pliers to get a greater deflection . Here, although there are indentations in the wood, but go away again after sanding.
After 2-3 hours, the glue and the wood was dry and I removed the needles.
Greetings and much fun with your Albatros!



it would be nice if you could post a log of your progress. :)

Edited by VolkerBo

Current build: San Martin 1580 - Occre



Finished builds:

Albatros - Constructo - first wooden ship

Dana 2000 - Billing Boats



Gallery: Albatros - Constructo


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