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USS Syren 1803 by Overworked724 – Model Shipways – Scale 1:64


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HI Dave.  That is precisely how I have been trying to taper - but my efforts are a bit below par.  Only difference between how you are doing it and how I have been is that I used cork instead of sandpaper on the back of the ruler.  I might try sandpaper...!  A very helpful call from Kurt cheered me up. 

 

I'll jump back on the planking horse a bit later.  May amuse myself with drilling and setting the treenails on the bulwarks...

 

Moving on!

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45 minutes ago, smotyka said:

I also wanted to second the idea of using sandpaper such as adhesive backed 80 grit to the back side of a ruler as stated by CPDDET.  As a woodworker I do this with rules, straight edges etc. to insure that my marking don't slide all over the place. 

Actually - I'm sure that is part of the problem.  I would back stop the plank and overlay the straight edge, but halfway through the cut, I would notice the ever so slight wandering for the edge from the marking.  I agree with you and Dave that sandpaper may be a much better grip than cork.

 

Luckily, I'm going to (hopefully) copper the hull, so I just need the shape...but this is giving me some good experience on what NOT to do...so I'll probably jump on the half hull kit from NRG and try to focus on planking technique as a fun side project.

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The sand paper I used is available at any hardware / home improvement store. It comes in a roll (3 feet long?) And an inch or so wide. It's used by plumbers to clean copper pipe before soldering.

 

I also have the NRG half hull kit waiting for me once I finish my Bluenose. I really need to get a firm grasp on proper hull planking before I attempt any further models.

 

While the painted hull of my Bluenose looks pretty good, I had to use a coating of wood putty over the entire hull to get it than way.

 

I've decided I don't want to paint any future models and only use oils / stains on the wood. But to do that my planking techniques have a long way to go.

 

Carry on, Pat. You're doing good work.

D

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6 hours ago, CPDDET said:

 

I also have the NRG half hull kit waiting for me once I finish my Bluenose. I really need to get a firm grasp on proper hull planking before I attempt any further models.

Well, Dave. I just ordered Toni’s half hull kit!  I have the same opinion...I want to get my planking down so I’ll be jumping it on it part time as a fun distraction. 

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10 minutes ago, Overworked724 said:

Well, Dave. I just ordered Toni’s half hull kit!  I have the same opinion...I want to get my planking down so I’ll be jumping it on it part time as a fun distraction. 

Using the half hull kit as a distraction sounds like a good idea. But my work space is a bit limited to have both builds going at the same time. But it is tempting.

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28 minutes ago, Jamie Coleman said:

Something I found on other woodworking projects, try to make one score line very shallow exactly along your straight edge, then go back and make it deeper in stages. Trying to take too big of a bite can cause the knife to wander and look ragged or even move the straight edge.

That is exactly what I do, Jamie...I'm just not very skilled at it I guess.  Another thing is that basswood tends to get scored to a certain point then cracks apart along the cutting line unevenly.  I'm sure with denser wood like the cedar or boxwood this is not a problem.  Something to consider for future.  

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Could the cracking be caused by to thick of a blade? I had this happen once when trying to use a utility knife. 

 

But if your using a single edge razor blade you can't get much thinner than that.

 

Basswood isn't the easiest stuff to work with for sure. Dents easily, difficult to cut straight and clean, tough to paint, way too absorbant and on and on.

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These are some great tips of how to trim strake planks, I'm going to keep them in mind the next time I've got planking. Patrick as too have spaces and gaps in you planking a thing I came across while reading about copper plating was from Gahms log about how he used filler extensively on the entire hull until he had a smooth surface to apply finish and then the copper plates. His Syren is beautiful and read how he obtained the fantastic copper plating and don't be so hard on yourself. GREAT JOB

 

Stay well and safe

Will  :pirate41:

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  • 4 weeks later...

Hi All, new builder here and am getting ready to build this beauty.  I do not want to hijack this thread, but will be following along.  I have been building rc airplanes for quite awhile now, but my garage is full of them hanging on the wall.  I either needed to stop flying, or change what I build, so this was my choice.  I hope to transfer my skills over to this hobby and am looking forward to following this build.  If you want to point me elsewhere (since I am a new bee) I am open to that as well. 

I am reading 3 different books:  Planking techniques by Donald Dressel; Ship Modeling from Stem to Stern by Milton Roth; and How to Build First-Rate Ship Models from Kits by Ben Lankford.  Also have almost completed my building board/keel clamp.  Hope to be able to follow this thread and become more knowledgeable.  Here is my building board... still a few things to complete, but it is mostly done.

 

oops....And the Chuck Passaro practicum.

 

Building Board 

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Gone but not forgotten...got 1/2 of my Syren planked. Just focused on getting the hull covered without too many garish errors (but it’s not historical planking). I figure filling, sander, and sealing will be my next endeavor. On to finish second side...yippeee. 
 

Will save accuracy’s planking skill development for my 1/2 hull project. But I still need to work out how to trim planks accurately...it’s A real bear of a problem. 
 

But I want to continue modeling my Syren so I’ve changed my mindset to ‘get the wood on the bloody hull!’ 
 

Here are some gratuitous photos...

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Moving on....:cheers:

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A bit more slow progress. At least I can say the hull planking is on (such as it is). My greatest respect to folks who can pull if seamless planking. It’s a skill which I still need to develop. 
 

But I’m gladly moving on...to sanding and more sanding and wood filler. 
 

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The stern was rough...but I take heart in the fact I’ve never done planking before, so I’ll give myself a small pat on the back and move on. 
 

🍺

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Looks really good! Definitely can't tell that it's your first time planking. 

36 minutes ago, Overworked724 said:

My greatest respect to folks who can pull if seamless planking

This still seems like magic to me, it might be a while until I try something with exposed single layer of planks 

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After some sanding and more sanding...then wood filler and some sanding...and more sanding...and wood filler...you get the idea.

 

Hull is now smoother than a baby’s butt. 👶 Had to pay attention to the stern, but after filler and sanding it turned out ok...


It’s not perfect, but it should turn out pretty decent after painting and coppering (fingers crossed).

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What the hell...moving on!!

 

:pirate41:

 

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More ‘sanding/filling/sanding’.  I keep scrutinizing the hull and finding areas I could smooth out a bit more. Kind of hitting the point of diminishing returns so will stop here. I keep rubbing the hull like it’s some erotic fetish...but seriously, I’m amazed at how smooth and solid it feels. 👍🏽 Time to move on. 
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I guess the only question is whether I should coat the hull with a wipe on poly or base coat of primer to help adhesion of the copper plates. Not sure. Anyone got some advice?
 

On a different tack...I really hate basswood.  I’ve come to the point in this model where I won’t tolerate it unless it’s part of the premade laser cut pieces. 
 

So, I decided to cut up my stock of 24” boxwood blocks to make a false keel piece (5/16”).  I figured that would be easy to make. And frankly, I can’t say enough about how tight and silky boxwood feels. It’s amazingly tight grained wood. 
 

I cut a 1/16” x 5/16” section of boxwood to compare to the basswood strip...and let’s just say I’m sold. 
 

Basswood...

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Boxwood...

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And comparing them, feeling them, etc. I can get a better understanding why basswood (very thready and won’t hold an edge) is not preferable. Cheap, yes... but you get what you pay for. 
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My false keel is prepped...and my boxwood stash is ready when needed. 
 

Moving on... 

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3 hours ago, Overworked724 said:

I keep rubbing the hull like it’s some erotic fetish...

This made me lol 😂😂 I did this too and the thought did come every now and then 

 

3 hours ago, Overworked724 said:

I guess the only question is whether I should coat the hull with a wipe on poly or base coat of primer to help adhesion of the copper plates. Not sure. Anyone got some advice?

I used Minwax Sanding Sealer for mine and it sealed all the wood pores of the basswood nicely. Not sure how it'll work with boxwood though. 

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