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Hello,

 

It has been a while but I promise I have been busy. It has not been  easy developing new kits whilst holding down a full time job, but I am enjoying the experience and hope that one day, I can quit the day job and concentrate solely on the Vanguard Models range.

 

OK, first to be released, which I am hoping will be in two or three weeks, is the Armed Cutter Alert. I am just waiting for everything to be delivered, so I can put the kits together in the boxes. I should have a final price soon, once I receive my final invoice for the laser cutting and photo etched parts.

 

I have attached a pic of the box art that I did for Alert. The manual is being printed right now (56 A3 colour pages).

 

I did start the designs for HMS Bristol, as this was to be my next kit. However, whilst reading one of my books during tea breaks at work, I learnt of the small 14 gun brig Speedy (1782), and her exploits when commanded by Lord Cochrane. I ordered the plans and decided to do this next. It seemed to make more sense, as I will be able to release this by the end of Summer (I hope). Because of the very fine lines, I have used a lot more bulkheads than is usual for this size of kit (15 bulkheads).

 

After this, I will hopefully have some money come in instead of all going out, and will concentrate of Bristol, followed most probably with a heavy frigate.

 

I will add a couple of pics of the Speedy prototype hull in a following update. I had the parts laser cut locally, as these are 'sacrificial' parts and used only to check fit and make sure the gun port pattern fits exactly as it should. I did intend to have the gun ports framed, as the Victory model, but realised the frames would have to be way too thin to achieve scale thickness of the bulwarks, once the inner and outer planking strips were factored in.

 

This is the new website (still work in progress until I finalise costs of Alert:

 

https://vanguardmodels.com/

 

And a big thank you to Steve Urwin, who has done all of that for me, which I appreciate very much.

 

Also a big thank you to Jim Hatch, who has helped with contacts for boxes and resin casting suppliers. Without MSW, I would not have even started down this path, so thank you!

 

Chris

Alert box art.jpg

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I really can't wait to see Alert in the box. I know it's not, but it sure does seem like an age when you watch something progress. 

 

I know you have big plans and MSW is where you can see this happen!

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Looking great.

 

How will the pre-drilled gun port tackle eyebolt positions work on Speedy? It means you will have to plank the inner bulwarks first so that you can drill through from the outside to maintain the positions. This means cutting the bulkhead tabs off first before completing the second layer of outer planking.

 

Great idea if can get to work as I hate marking and drilling them from the inside and there is always at least one where the drill bit goes all the way through the outer planking.

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1 hour ago, Thunder said:

Looking great.

 

How will the pre-drilled gun port tackle eyebolt positions work on Speedy? It means you will have to plank the inner bulwarks first so that you can drill through from the outside to maintain the positions. This means cutting the bulkhead tabs off first before completing the second layer of outer planking.

 

Great idea if can get to work as I hate marking and drilling them from the inside and there is always at least one where the drill bit goes all the way through the outer planking.

Thank you.

 

I must stress that this is a pre-prototype (the gun port pattern is missing its hawse holes still - I use these to try ideas and see if any stick), and when drawing the details onto the pattern in CAD, I added the eyebolt holes in case I find a way to make these holes work. For example, I figured the second planking could go as high as the lower edges of the gun ports, then remove the bulkhead tabs above deck level, plank the inside, and then drill the holes from the outside in, and then finish off the outer planking.

 

I will try this, and if it doesn't work, I will design some templates instead. It should work, though. As I mentioned, I do not much like gun port patterns so much, and much prefer the new method with longitudinal and vertical frames slotting together to make the port timbers - but the bulkhead tabs would have to be 2mm thick max to do this, and I suspect many builders would be frustrated with the fragility, and many tabs broken whilst planking.

 

I do now include a nice slot in the bows to take the planking up to the planking lines as per the original plans, I tried this with Alert and worked really well, so I shall use that for all future kits.

 

Oh, forgot to mention, I am having a 64th scale sculpture of Lord Cochrane made for Speedy (digital so I can change the scale if I want), what do you guys think about this, like having say, Pellew for Indefatigable and Nelson for Bristol (as he did serve on it). Not just generic sailor figures, but ones sculpted from actual paintings of the men, with the correct heights (Nelson was 5 foot 4 and Cochrane was over 6 feet tall)? I could do them in 72nd, 64th and 48th scale.

 

ETA - Also forgot to say, Speedy will have a copper bottom..

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Chris....its a wonderful model.  I wish you the best of luck.  Congrats on getting out of the gate running.  I am sure this will be a very popular kit and we will soon see many of them being built on MSW. :champagne-popping-smiley-emotic

 

Chuck

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2 hours ago, Chuck said:

Chris....its a wonderful model.  I wish you the best of luck.  Congrats on getting out of the gate running.  I am sure this will be a very popular kit and we will soon see many of them being built on MSW. :champagne-popping-smiley-emotic

 

Chuck

Thank you Chuck. Good job we don't add in our own development time, otherwise the costs would be stratospheric! lol

2 hours ago, Haliburton said:

Great idea about the sculptures. It sets your product apart - links the ship to history and gives a sense of scale perspective.

 

Thanks, that was my thinking behind the figures, too.

 

After Bristol, I am torn between a 64th scale Bellona or the 'super frigate' Indefatigable, with the latter more appealing right now. I have been trying to find anything for the figurehead and stern decoration for Pellew's ship, but contemporary information is quite sparse. If anyone can unearth anything I could use for these parts (figurehead especially), that would be appreciated.

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These are the 3-D printed parts I designed for Speedy which will be resin cast to keep the detail and proper size, 4-Pounder and half-Pounder barrels and small main bitt winch (There is a photo etched part that fits into the end of the smaller barrel):

Speedy resin parts.jpg

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Congratulations on your upcoming release of the Alert.  I look forward to seeing it.  And, I like the idea of the 3-D figures on the models.  As someone said earlier, it provides a good link between history and our hobby of ship modeling.  Best of luck with the first production and here's hoping for many more after that.  Jim 

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Chris - with regard to Indefatigable, I have made a set of POF plans myself in cad 1:48 in her 44 (50) razee guise as that is to be my next scratch fully framed build, I can tell you now that in all my research I could find no information on what figurehead she had even as a 64, I even contacted the Museum at Bucklers hard where she was built and they had nothing.

Myself and John from Art of Age of sail ( he built a POF version ) discussed that because she was sister ship of the Agamemnon and they were both built at Bucklers at the same time they may have had similar figureheads but that’s pure speculation and it’s unknown if when she was razeed they even reused the original or went to one of those standard busts as it was after 1794 when they stopped decorating the ships so much.

As for her stern decorations, there are several paintings depicting her with stern details shown ( a la vs Droits la homme) to get ideas from.

if you do manage to dig up info on her figurehead I would love to hear about it.

 

ben

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4 hours ago, Trussben said:

Chris - with regard to Indefatigable, I have made a set of POF plans myself in cad 1:48 in her 44 (50) razee guise as that is to be my next scratch fully framed build, I can tell you now that in all my research I could find no information on what figurehead she had even as a 64, I even contacted the Museum at Bucklers hard where she was built and they had nothing.

Myself and John from Art of Age of sail ( he built a POF version ) discussed that because she was sister ship of the Agamemnon and they were both built at Bucklers at the same time they may have had similar figureheads but that’s pure speculation and it’s unknown if when she was razeed they even reused the original or went to one of those standard busts as it was after 1794 when they stopped decorating the ships so much.

As for her stern decorations, there are several paintings depicting her with stern details shown ( a la vs Droits la homme) to get ideas from.

if you do manage to dig up info on her figurehead I would love to hear about it.

 

ben

Hi Ben,

 

Thanks for the info. I suspect it may be better not to overdo the decoration then, and just have the bare minimum. I would seriously doubt they would  have spent too much on extra carvings for the stern when changed to a razee, more so when we realise she was converted due to a severe shortage in large frigates, and was to be ready for commission as soon as possible. I do note that outer most windows are very close the edge of the stern, so no figure would be either side.

 

Best guess for figurehead and stern décor is the order of the day (as it was with Agamemnon almost two decades ago) - but full figurehead or just a bust....

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Chris - I would agree with you that decorations were proberbly kept to a minimum when she was cut down to reduce cost and speed up the work, another thing to remember that I found in my research is that Pellew ordered himself that the new poop deck be shortened to before the mizzen mast to reduce Top Hamper as compared to the Razee plans available from NMM that show the poop running further forward, see picture. This is documented in several places so I consider it to be trustworthy information but you may decide otherwise.

 

image.png.3704abb0db084d8f77a43e79355bca99.png

 

 

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Thanks Ben,

 

I did read that the poop was shortened to just aft of the mizzen (Frigates of the Napoleonic Wars, Robert Gardiner). It states that another gun port was worked into the quarterdeck bulwarks, I am assuming they would be at or near abreast of the main mast, and a carronade would have been fitted, as the recoil isn't so dramatic. I may do a half port, and keep the original levels of the plans, as that looks better.

 

On the Alert front, I had my instruction and plan manuals arrive today (A3 size), and they look better than I ever dared hope, looks quite 'classy'. Having said that they weren't cheap. One thing that I always hated with instruction manuals is the minute size of the text, you will have no problems trying to read the text in this..

Alert manual 1.jpg

Alert manual 5.jpg

Alert manual 2.jpg

Alert manual 3.jpg

Alert manual 4.jpg

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Here are some more pics of the manual and, another delivery today. I received the cast resin parts for the Alert, the large drum winch (which was originally designed using many parts in laser cut wood and PE, but decided against as it was quite complicated to build up), and the smaller mast bitts winch. Also, a sample of a 24 pounder cannon for Bristol.

Alert winch and 24 pounder.jpg

Alert manual 8.jpg

Alert manual 7.jpg

Alert manual 6.jpg

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That is one beautiful manual! You have put together a great kit to tempt all of us that have sworn off further purchases until the current backlog has been cleared, even if only a little cleared up.  Does it count if I clear the backlog by selling off execss inventory rather than building?

 

 

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I just looked over the pictures of your manual for the Alert.  It looks terrific.  Like others who are following your progress on Alert, I am anxious to see its debut!  Congratulations on all the work you have done so far.  You are making it very tempting to say that Alert will be my "next" model.

Jim 

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Thank you guys, I am told the laser and PE are being shipped to me within the week, so will be able to start to put kits together by the end of next week (if my boxes turn up..)

 

I had the Speedy captain figure done, and plan to have Nelson and Pellew done too, in both 64th and 72nd scale.

Cochrane 1.JPG

Cochrane 2.JPG

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Hi Chris

Please do some 1/48 scale as well, they are extremely hard to find and I know I would purchase some, many people on this site have discussed this scale figures at times and would be interested as well I'm sure

Regards

Paul

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