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CPDDET

Have a extra $100.00 to spend......

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Made $100.00 at the garage sale and thought I would sink it into tools for shipbuilding.

 

Since I'm a newbie I thought I would ask more experienced shipwrights about this.

 

I have a good selection of cutting blades, tweezers, razor saw & miter box, jewelers pliers, mini Dremel and electric sander. Have paint supplies as well

 

Maybe rigging tools (if they are really needed)? Will be starting that soon.

 

Any input on "must have " tools would be most welcome and appreciated.

 

Dave

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Posted (edited)

Hey Dave, I find I use a small modelling hammer all the time, depending on your eyesight, some magnifying tools may be useful too. Pin vises are always necessary, and you can NEVER have enough clamps of any size!

 

In my opinion, some of the fancy rigging/ratline tools/frames are a waste of money. A good selection of small chisels come in handy, and if I had any money left over I would probably stock up on sandpaper of various grades and different types of tape for masking and holding.

 

And what CDW said; definitely invest in a good plank bender!

 

Cheers

 

Chris

 

Edited by vossy

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The plank bender sounds like a good investment. I managed on my Bluenose without it but there are some future builds I'm eyeing where it would be a big help. 

 

Any thoughts on this bending jig?

 

60663_R-1.jpg.ea51f16d993de501c0d4ecad30ae98c7.jpg

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Using water and heat will achieve the same results 100 times quicker. Amati has a great soldering iron plank bender. I use that for all my bending needs. I am sure others will have their favourite methods as well, but it really comes down to soaking the wood to make it pliable, then heating it to achieve the desired shape. Once the wood is then cooled it will hold the shape.

 

Chris

 

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10 minutes ago, CPDDET said:

Any thoughts on this bending jig?

It looks very interesting, but I have never used one and cannot say how useful it might be in the long haul. Vossy (Chris) also provided a very thoughtful list of day-to-day ship modeling tools. He is spot on about the need for various size and types of clamps. You can get a lot of ideas for useful tools that won't break the bank by follow the build threads here at MSW.

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Well, it looks like I'll order the electric plank bender, some cross lock clamps and a small modelers hammer.

 

That will leave me enough to buy a 77mm circular polarizer for my wide angle lens. Photography is my other hobby. Between that and shipbuilding I'm going to need a lot more garage sales. LOL

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In this situation, I would hold the money until I progressed in a build to a place where a specific tool is needed and then buy it.  If you have a large budget - buying tools on spec, or collecting anything that could possibly be of use, is a no risk, no hardship behavior.  If the expenditure has an effect, that is not a sustainable aspect.

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I agree with what Jaager says.   Buy it when you need or if you "know" you'll be needing it.    As far as bending planks, one can go a garage sale and pick old curling irons (in various sizes) for very little money.  

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, CPDDET said:

The plank bender sounds like a good investment. I managed on my Bluenose without it but there are some future builds I'm eyeing where it would be a big help. 

 

Any thoughts on this bending jig?

 

60663_R-1.jpg.ea51f16d993de501c0d4ecad30ae98c7.jpg

I'd have to rank that one right up there at the top of the "useless scale," just below the infamous, but amazingly still sold, "Loom-a-line." (Full disclosure: I bought one forty-plus years ago. Still have it. Tried to use it once. Never touched it again.) 

 

For whatever it cost, if you need a bending jig, it's easy enough to take a block of scrap wood and a few finishing nails and save a whole lot of money. If you have a decent plank-bending iron, you really shouldn't need anything more than that for bending planks.

 

My first rule for tool buying, admittedly sometimes broken, is to never buy a tool until you need it and then only buy the best you can possibly afford. It's very tempting to buy the latest gizmo on impulse, but a fool and his money are soon parted, as they say. There are very, very few "ship modeling specific" tools. Most come from other crafts and trades and purchasing tools from non-modeling sources often will get you much better quality tools at much lower prices than the stuff in the modeling catalogs.

 

If you are serious about the hobby and the sort of person who sticks with their interests, I'd urge you to start a "piggy bank." Whenever you have any "spare change," set a buck or ten aside for the day when you really have a use for a good tool that will cost you a few bucks. It's surprising how fast it adds up, even if you just throw your pocket change in a jar when you take off your pants every night before bed. Do that for a few months and when the day comes you realize how much money you are spending on pre-cut wood at the hobby shop, you'll have enough on hand to join the "Model Machines Club" and buy a Byrnes saw, a decent micro-lathe, a mini drill press, a scroll saw, and cool stuff like that which can really pay for itself over time and will always hold a lot of its value if and when you ever no longer need it. 

 

If the money you've got is irresistably burning a hole in your pocket, you might consider buying a small machinist's vise and a jeweler's vise. Those are a couple of tools I find I'm always using. They are simple things, but very handy to have. The same goes for a "third hand" device of some kind, although I have never found one that was a well-built as I would wish (alligator clips and loose ball joints don't cut it.) Sometimes making your own is not only less expensive, but also much better. A draw plate for making variously sized micro-dowels is an excellent investment. Jim Byrnes makes a very fine one and at $25, it's a good "gateway drug" that will get you hooked on his other really fine tools. http://www.byrnesmodelmachines.com/index5.html

 

Finally, don't limit yourself to tools. One essential for any serious modeler is a reference library. The internet has made a huge amount of information easily available, but there's still a lot of data that isn't on line. A lot of the old timers here started building their modeling libraries before there ever was an internet or an Amazon to make used books readily available. We'd have to pore through used bookstores or subscribe to antiquarian booksellers' monthly or quarterly catalogs in the hope of snagging a treasured out-of-print title before one of our modeling colleagues did. If one buys a used book or two a month, often for less than $25 a piece, they can build a very useful, and valuable, modeling library. Only buy the good books. (There are lots of mediocre ones aimed at the beginners.) Look for the "classics" and the books that are full of good reference materials. These books will hold their value reasonably well and always be useful. If you watch for them on eBay or look for them on Amazon and similar sites, you can find the works of Davis, Underhill, Longridge, Chappelle, and other "essentials" fairly reasonably priced. Building a reference library can, and likely will, become a collecting hobby in and of itself. Besides, if you fill your house with books, people will think you're smart. :D 

 

 

Edited by Bob Cleek

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Good advice from Jaager. As you work, you will feel the need for certain types of tools, say to hold something, to cut something, etc., because your toolbox doesn't have right stuff. That's the point to buy - or to make yourself, btw. Analyse carefully what operations you try to perform and how your existing tools don't do, that gives you ideas of what to look for.

 

There are a lot of useless 'modelling' tools on the market. Sometimes the idea is good, but their make is poor, sometimes they are outright useless. It is also worthwhile to browse jewellery and watchmaking supply houses, fine tool supply houses, dentists and dental technician suppliers, medical suppliers, manicure/pedicure suppliers, etc. Their market is usually much bigger than ours and they often have the same stuff in better quality (and sometimes at lower prices) than 'modelling' suppliers. Ebay is your friend too.

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10 hours ago, CPDDET said:

to buy a 77mm circular polarizer for my wide angle lens

Hi Dave

 

100 dollars minus the bender and some clamps plus hammer won't leave you much for a decent filter ... someone once gave me two cheapo pol filters and they didn't make me happy: blurry pictures and a non-uniform pol effect (I use an "ancient" Nikon D300S). I've bought a  B&W Käsemann MRC Nano which is brilliant but it cost me about 140 Euros.

Just a quick heads up.

 

Cheers

Pieter

 

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Thank you all for the great advice here., So many tempting tools out there!

 

After giving it some thought I decided to invest in some books on rigging. This is something that I will be attempting quite soon on my current build (also my first build). Spent about $90.00 but it will be a good start for my rigging library. 

 

Rigging Period Fore-and-Aft Craft

by Lennarth Petersson

 

The Rigging of Ships: in the Days of the Spritsail Topmast, 1600-1720

by R. C. Anderson 

 

Rigging Period Ship Models: A Step-by-Step Guide to the Intricacies of Square-Rig

by Lennarth Peterson

 

The Art of Rigging

by George Biddlecombe 

 

The Young Sea Officer's Sheet Anchor: Or a Key to the Leading of Rigging and to Practical Seamanship

by Darcy Lever 

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Did you buy them already ? Always check out the Internet first, there are now many historic books available for free as eBooks.

 

I don't have any of Peterson's books, but seem to have heard that there are quite a few mistakes in them and he generalises from Swedish practices as represented in the models in the Sjöfartmuseum in Stockholm. Perhaps some other Members can comment on the reliability of the books ?

 

From the selection of books, I assume that you are mainly interested in the first half of the 19th century ? That's important to remember as rigging practices evolved considerably.

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Oh dear, I saw this too late!

My personal very biased opinion, these money would be better spent on the small Proxon drill press. It might be  bit more expensive but it is so useful it justifies the added cost.

But for now enjoy the books!

 

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Never fear. The drill may come in the future when the need arises.

I'm new to this art and don't yet wish to jump in with both feet. It's much to easy for me to get caught up in "buying rather than building".

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Personally, I also prefer 'real' books and have a library with some quite rare period books. However, some books have never been reprinted and, therefore, are largely unknown to the modelling community. There is also a space issue for some of us. There is a good paperback reprint of Biddlecombe by Dover and there are several reprints of the 'Lever' - I have an US American, hard-bound one from around 35 years ago.

 

When you do Google searches on the title/author, it usually turns up the holdings in GoogleBooks, Abebooks.com, as well as the ones in archive.org. There is a bias towards English titles though. When you look for French titles, you better go to the site of the French Bibliotheque Nationale.

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8 hours ago, CPDDET said:

Thank you all for the great advice here., So many tempting tools out there!

 

After giving it some thought I decided to invest in some books on rigging. This is something that I will be attempting quite soon on my current build (also my first build). Spent about $90.00 but it will be a good start for my rigging library. 

 

Rigging Period Fore-and-Aft Craft

by Lennarth Petersson

 

The Rigging of Ships: in the Days of the Spritsail Topmast, 1600-1720

by R. C. Anderson 

 

Rigging Period Ship Models: A Step-by-Step Guide to the Intricacies of Square-Rig

by Lennarth Peterson

 

The Art of Rigging

by George Biddlecombe 

 

The Young Sea Officer's Sheet Anchor: Or a Key to the Leading of Rigging and to Practical Seamanship

by Darcy Lever 

Ah... You chose wisely,  Grasshopper.

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Hi Dave,

The tool that I went without for a long time and now can't imagine how I managed without it is a digital caliper. I use it all the time - when strips of wood need to be resorted by size, what size hole do I need to drill for this eyebolt, when I need to convert mm to inches, measuring wire thickness, when I stupidly have more than one container of drill bits open at the same time and mix them up, etc. etc. I seem to reach for it continually. It won't use up all of your $100 either.

David

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So Dave, as you can see this $100 you had to spent could get you spending another $1000 for the bare absolute necessities of model building...😀

Just remember to fly under the admiral's radar...

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