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La Belle Poule 1765 by MTaylor - Scale 1:64 - POB- French Frigate from ANCRE plans


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Bruce, Alan,

 

Your subject of interest best belongs in the Painting Forum.  It could seriously divert this build log. 

Copy/paste #296-299 to that forum and even though it is a subject that has many threads that intersect, it may have legs for a while. 

I can add a bit of clarification as can several others, but not here.  An important aspect of it is that it is more opinion than Science.  It is also a love me? love my opinion! sort of subject - a whole lot of emotional investment on the part of some.

 

Mark,

I have become a bit of a medical apostate.  I am willing to accept the consequences if I am wrong and there is only one investor, so keep this is mind.   About the >BP and the meds to affect it.  I would balance just how > the Bp gets and what the probable harm could be vs the side effects of the meds.  I have been away from the field for over 10 years and have not kept up at all.  But way back then, there were several paths with many different bundles of med induced problems, so if the course you are on is causing problems, try a different one.  If your doc is a love me, love my choice sort of Ego, rethink your choice of MD.   How bad would ignoring it be? How bad would just tapping it with HCTZ be?  Or just Atenolol?  or the two?  I started in the mid 60's  in hospital, and the basket of meds that were "vital"  to take chronically to reverse long term poorly chosen life style damage is very different from the basket when I bailed.    

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I don't want to be a heretic and it may not be the right place to discuss this, but why are people so crazy about tung-oil ? I can understand that it is used for say furniture or certain musical instruments, where apparently it is mixed with line-seed oil to reduce its brittleness. Somehow, applying an oily substance to a delicate item, such as a model, even an oxidating, i.e. drying, oil, does make me somewhat uncomfortable. Shellac or nitrocellulose-based varnishes seem to be 'cleaner' options.

 

There are no many light-fast dyes around, so dying wood should not be such a problem. In think in many cases dyes can be mixed to change the hue and diluted, if needed. This seems to be give more reproducible results.

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I now realize that I have sinned. :D

 

Mark, I'm sorry for derailing your log; I just wanted to provide a quick photo of my experiment since I knew you were using the same type of wood that I was.   I'll post my experiment in the proper forum, as it really does seem like there could be some very robust and fascinating conversation on this topic! 

 

Alan

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  • 1 month later...

Been awhile, I know.  I'm still sorting out some things while working on the planking.    Hopefully, that won't be too muich longer now that I have the stern planking figured out.

 

One of my "side" projects was to "re-learn" carving.  After a post here about it, and then I re-read Bill Shorts book and things started coming back as had done carvings on Licorne (not all but some).  Long story short... here's one of the carvings with the references. 

 

First up is the stern plan showing the carvings.   Not the greatest I've seen but it's what I have to work with. Some of these are super tiny so I'll figure something out on them.

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Next up are two photos from the Web...  Both show the same carvings but different approaches and thus what they looked like.   It should be noted that these are all 1:48 builds. They both seem to be pretty "flat" with not much depth and there's differences in what the builder saw in the plans.  

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And here's mine.  It's best I can do.  This is one at the very top. It's (I think) a bird with the lantern post coming out of it's mouth.  Go figure, right?   That's a penny (American) underneath it.  The carving is about 1.75 cm (less than 0.75 in) overall.  From here, except for the Arms of France, the carvings get smaller.  I don't think I'll be able to put any real detail into them.  And that dark spot on the extreme tip of the left wing seems to be shadow as it's not on the carving.

 

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Back to the shop until next time.  I'm doing carvings while waiting for glue to dry on the planking or for inspiration on problem solving.

 

I should add, I thought about photo etch and even having 3D printing done but cost is big factor with 3D and I think my carvings will be better than photo etch.  Ah... hope still springs forth internally.

 

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From my own experiences, especially those on S.R., there is a certain satisfaction that comes with carving your own pieces despite the end result. I know I am nowhere near the best carver and many of my pieces are rough, especially faces, but regardless of artistic quality, I am immensely proud that I took the time to do it. Being able to say that all those pieces are hand carved is something that in my opinion, raises a model a step above the rest.

 

I also think that, at least for myself, the bigger challenge is not always the actual carving, but having a clear picture of what it is that is supposed to be carved. Too often the molded kit carvings are muddled and unclear and finding paintings that clearly show what was depicted is rare. There are some books that do a good job of providing drawings or close ups of other models, yet as luck would have it, rarely are they of the vessel needed.

 

Well done thus far and I wish you continuing success as you go along!

 

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Hi Mark,

 

Carving is a fascinating subject and you are doing good. The more you try it, the more you gain confidence and the better are the results.

 

As for Tung oil, I have a good idea why it is popular because I have been using it for years and here are some reasons:

 

-Tung oil is clear of debris in comparison with linseed oil by example

-Easy to apply and then you rub the excess

-Applied by thin coats, one is usually enough

-No strong odors, non sticky

-Instantly give 100 years to the look of the wood

-The wood grain is highlighted by using this oil

-Easy to photograph, no shiny effect like shellac by example

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Thanks for the comments and likes.   I'm slowly hammering away at things not just carvings.  There's things that plans don't really show but I'm getting them sorted out.  Hopefully, another week or two and I can have the planking done and sanded but I'll have to deal with what ever gets in the way first.

 

17 hours ago, G.L. said:

In my opinion this is well done, Mark. Still much better than I could. Probably your skill will grow as more of the wood carving is done.

 

Don't sell yourself short, G.L.   I think things will improve as I go which seems to normal for all of us.  

 

11 hours ago, EJ_L said:

From my own experiences, especially those on S.R., there is a certain satisfaction that comes with carving your own pieces despite the end result. I know I am nowhere near the best carver and many of my pieces are rough, especially faces, but regardless of artistic quality, I am immensely proud that I took the time to do it. Being able to say that all those pieces are hand carved is something that in my opinion, raises a model a step above the rest.

 

I also think that, at least for myself, the bigger challenge is not always the actual carving, but having a clear picture of what it is that is supposed to be carved. Too often the molded kit carvings are muddled and unclear and finding paintings that clearly show what was depicted is rare. There are some books that do a good job of providing drawings or close ups of other models, yet as luck would have it, rarely are they of the vessel needed.

 

Well done thus far and I wish you continuing success as you go along!

 

 

I tend to agree on your observations, EJ.  I think my biggest headache is deciphering the drawings. 

 

9 hours ago, Chuck said:

That looks great to my eye.   Keep going.  I also imagine if you did a couple more it will get better with each attempt.   You have to get your carving sea legs back.  

 

Thanks Chuck.  I'm going to do a few more of the different ones and then go back an look again at the earlier carvings.   I've learned that doing is a great teacher.

 

7 hours ago, Gaetan Bordeleau said:

Hi Mark,

 

Carving is a fascinating subject and you are doing good. The more you try it, the more you gain confidence and the better are the results.

 

As for Tung oil, I have a good idea why it is popular because I have been using it for years and here are some reasons:

 

-Tung oil is clear of debris in comparison with linseed oil by example

-Easy to apply and then you rub the excess

-Applied by thin coats, one is usually enough

-No strong odors, non sticky

-Instantly give 100 years to the look of the wood

-The wood grain is highlighted by using this oil

-Easy to photograph, no shiny effect like shellac by example

 

Thanks Gaetan.  I've been following your discussions (and others) on the use of tung oil and am considering it over other coatings.  Just not time yet to even test it.

 

 

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Hi Mark = 

 

Your model is coming along very nicely.

Welcome now to the wonderful world of carving.  It really is wonderful, despite a pretty steep learning curve.

As others have said, the more you do, the better you will get at it.

Having worked my way up the curve, I have some thoughts and a tip that works for me.

 

First, there are two basic methods for miniature carving - chip, or knife carving and rotary carving.

In the first, the unwanted material is removed with a blade or chisel.  In the other, by burrs and bitts in a Dremel or similar.

To see an excellent use of the first method, check out Hubac's Historian's build of the Soleil Royale. 

Although he is carving styrene, the principles are the same.

To see what rotary carving is about, look at my build of the Queen Anne's Revenge [just click on it below in my profile]

The carving of the figurehead starts on page 2

I do 95% of my carving with rotary tools and only the last little bits with a knife to get a crisp edge where I need it.

It is just a process of removing everything that does not look like the piece that you want.

 

As for the tip -

When you begin carving the flags and lances, mount the carving blank to a larger disc of scrap wood.

Use cyano or rubber cement, or another solvent based adhesive.

The round shape will let you easily turn it so you can attack the work from all angles.

The backing will support the thin shafts of the lances and other delicate details.

When you are done soak the entire piece in acetone or denatured alcohol until the carving comes free without force.

 

I hope that this helps a bit.

Keep up the excellent work.

 

Dan

 

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Thanks for the tips, Dan.   I have been mounting to scrap but not round.  I'll try that.  I seem to be using a mix of tools at this point.  Both rotary (using dental burrs) and hand  tools.  At this point, I'm preferring the hand tools.  

 

I'll have a re-look at your builds.

 

Thanks for looking in.

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Catching up Mark and I think your carving is quite good. I also believe it will look better still when viewed in context on the stern of the ship.  Placing it on the penny is great for comprehending it's small size but does nothing to foster appreciation of the piece as a delicate carving of wings.

 

I like the progress on the planking as well.  Nice work.

 

Gary  

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Here's the next carving.  Tiny little guy (angel or maybe it's a cherub) who's supposed to be holding a small banner with the ship's name on it.   Looks a lot better in person than he does on camera, IMO.  This is the keeper... number 5 out of 8 tries.  Coming up are the birds (ravens?) and acanthus branches (I think they are...) more tiny little carvings.  Meantime, planking is continuing along with chasing/following around the doctors on my bad heart valve.

 

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Thanks for the likes and comments, everyone.

 

Christian, I believe you have to do what works for you.   I did try some clay but it just wasn't for me.   Size of the pieces makes a big difference.  I looked at other logs of her at the 1:48 scale and saw mixed results.

 

And the carving continues. I guess I'm on a roll and just need to get them done.

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I found making a maquette (larger sized) in clay first helped me get the 3D problems worked out before carving in wood. It helped me visualize what to cut away. I agree that there is much more control with hand tools than with rotary power.

 

Your banner holding angel looks good. The more carving you do you'll find you get rapidly better. (I shudder at some of my early attempts!) I also found looking at classical sculpture pictures helped me a lot.

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47 minutes ago, druxey said:

I found making a maquette (larger sized) in clay first helped me get the 3D problems worked out before carving in wood. It helped me visualize what to cut away. I agree that there is much more control with hand tools than with rotary power.

 

Your banner holding angel looks good. The more carving you do you'll find you get rapidly better. (I shudder at some of my early attempts!) I also found looking at classical sculpture pictures helped me a lot.

 

I'll try the clay again.  I'm currently using the laser to "etch" the carving outline and maybe a few reference points elsewhere and then mentally visualizing how it should look when done.   Rotary tool is of limited use but I'm getting the hang of it though much still needs to be done with carving tools that are kept extremely sharp.

 

All in all, I'm finding it rather rewarding and satisfying even when the piece goes into the trash. 

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Michael,

I'm using a small bit of white glue to hold it in place on a piece of basswood.  Soaking in alcohol removes the piece from the basswood when I'm done.   Here's some photos of what I'm currently working on....  the birds and leaves and also the Arms of France.   The blanks are 3/32" boxwood for these.  The "little angel" was 1/8" as was the first one I did.  The etching is done with a very low power pass at "high" speed so it's not very deep.  I do etch extras as I'm a bit of klutz at times by either ruining the carving via a mistake or dropping it on the floor never to be seen again.  As a side note, I may have to simplify the Arms of France even more than I already have, but we'll see.

 

Edit:  Rats... I'll have to redo the Arms of France. Seems a cut a bit of the helmet plume.  For now, I'll use this one a test to see what needs to be simplified.

 

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