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Skiff by Legodude with ESF - BlueJacket Shipcrafters - 1:12 first build

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While showing my grandson the Zebulon B. Vance progress I gave him my magnifiers and let him trim a PE stanchion.  Since he's a first rate Lego constructor he did an admirable job of trimming, but finished with a question about whether anyone makes a kit with bigger pieces for beginners.  I jumped onto Bluejacket's web page after he left and found the perfect answer, the Skiff wooden kit.  Big, with not too many pieces to help ensure a timely and successful finish.  When I revealed it to him he said a great idea would be for us to have a blog(!) to see if anyone is interested and to see where and how far away the other shipbuilders live.  So this will be an on again, off again build dependent upon how often we can steal him from Mom and Dad for an overnight visit.  The goal is to have Legodude (his choice) do the building with guidance limited to explaining the instructions and how to read a drawing.  

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TheBox.thumb.jpeg.0a0432a054fa141d4b05896ebdddef04.jpegThe kit arrived in very short order a few weeks ago, well-packaged in a sturdy box.  The reveal to the builder has been anxiously awaited and was greeted with much enthusiasm.  But it is a hot day today, especially after a morning's worth of first grader lacrosse, and the pool around the corner beckoned, which stymied initial progress.


Contents include a well drawn full size plan, elevation and assorted details, a pre-cut and pre-punched sail, a laser package with wood of a good thickness to ensure it holds up under less-experienced fingers, a mast, strips for chines and gunwales, a sanding block with coarse and fine grits, rigging thread, a pre-slotted and shaped base and even a bottle of non-toxic white glue.



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From Legodude, thanks to everybody who gave me encouragement.  I'm surprised where everybody is from.  It's a great experience.  I'll write you back soon.


From Legodude to cog, thank you for keeping an eye on my grandfather and I hope you have a great rest of your life building model ships.

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On 6/8/2019 at 2:06 PM, cog said:

I'll be watching Steve for you ;) 

And I will be watching Carl as well. He is not totally trustable either. 🙂


Now is the chance to show granddad that you don't really need non-toxic white glue and that you can handle the "real " stuff.

Edited by lmagna



Build logs: Colonial sloop Providence 1/48th scale kit bashed from AL Independence

Currant builds:

Constructo Brigantine Sentinel (Union) (On hold)

Minicraft 1/350 Titanic (For the Admiral)

1/350 Heavy Cruiser USS Houston (Resin)

Currant research/scratchbuild:

Schooner USS Lanikai/Hermes

Non ship build log:

1/35th UH-1H Huey


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Legodude had to return home but we took some pictures of his progress before grandfather gave him a lift.  He asked that I say thank you to everyone who gave likes and more encouragement.


Lou, your wish is our command (again).


And a thank you to Mr. Bluejacket for your kind offer.  Legodude is already talking about a next build.

transom.thumb.jpeg.a00f07872ee8248fb0ac23804f638a43.jpegFirst step was to glue the inner and outer transoms together.  Grandfather thought it would be a good idea to clamp with two clothespins but the pressure in the middle caused the edges to flare out, so Legodude got his first experience with Titebond yellow glue, toothpicks and multiple clothespins, after which the transom seat was installed.

494398684_transomandseat.thumb.jpeg.69bd5b76ffb731b1a728a77fc6c85b9b.jpegNext up was the two sides.  Legodude had his first opportunity to use an X-acto chisel blade to nip the laser tabs off the carrier sheet.


When we tried dry bending the sides for test fit, one side popped off at the transom, which led to a new opportunity with The Kra-Gl (medium CA - see The Lego Movie), plus some Titebond strengthening between the underside of the transom seat, the transom and the sides.  Legodude also learned to sand off the laser char before gluing.

sternseat.thumb.jpeg.4896369a2977037e404023050e4e88d5.jpegWhile Legodude is at home grandfather soaked each side in a pan of boiling water for a few minutes for easier bending, and clamped them in place so they are formed and ready for gluing at the next visit.




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  • 1 month later...

Thank you all for stopping in to see my blog and thanks to all of you who hit the like button.  Have a great day!


Thank you cog.



177412486_starboardglued.thumb.jpeg.5f2b06fc3a41582ad1ee5e31a962e67e.jpegI glued the sides on.


127213399_daggerboardwork.thumb.jpeg.1e1d36b4dbd32a1b737ba10bc9000e22.jpegWhen I was making the mast step I got super glue on my finger and it stuck to the wood.  I got my finger off but when I touched it with my thumb my finger and thumb stuck together so I ran over to the sink and washed my hands with soap but Grandfather said soap doesn’t wash super glue off and I needed to rub my fingers together really fast to rub it off or it would wear off later.


I built the daggerboard but I have to do the daggerboard case.

348527331_daggerboardandmaststep.thumb.jpeg.3b241c92af8e3b340dae0d5734693f7c.jpegThe mast step and daggerboard are glued.


Grandfather boiled water to soften the chines so I could bend them against the wood sides.  The temperature was very hot.  When it came out you could just cut it like cheese.  I had to cut the ends to fit.


This took a bit of work to cut and sand to the exact point, and I finally got it in with a few bumps and a lot of sanding.  I didn’t realize how long it would take to get one piece all clamped in with clothespins.

409921809_chinesclampedon.thumb.jpeg.ddd9231aa95fb305e92a19c0c3b974f7.jpegOnce I come back to the house I will glue the chines to the boat so the clamps won’t have to hold them the entire time and hopefully I can glue on the bottom of the boat so I can paint it.


I cut out the oar pieces using an x-acto knife and chisel.  I used the x-acto chisel on the wide end of the oar and the knife on the short end.  I realized the oars are 3 pieces that need to be glued and sanded to make them round.

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Such a nice snd motivating project - uou do good with the modelbuilding youth. Bringung them away from smart phones and the dangers of "digital demencia". Great job.

"Let's add every day 1/2 hour of

modelship building to our

projects' progress..."



Take care!

Christian Heinrich


simple, true and inpretentious motto of ROYAL LOUIS, 1668

Sunking's mediter. flagship most decorated ocean-going ship 


Ships on build:


1st rang French 90-gun ship - Lavente flagship (based on Heller SR - 1/92 & scratch in 1/64) 

TONNANT, 1693: 

1st rang French 90-gun ship - sister of SAINT PHILIPPE (mock-up/test-object for S.P. - scratch in 1/64) 


Projects in planing:

L'AURORE, 1766:

French Pleasure Corvette (after Ancre plans - scatch in 1/64)

Some Spantaneous Short Term Projects


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