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US Brig Syren by niwotwill - Model Shipways - scale 1:64 - 2nd wooden kit build & 1st build log


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Progress is slowly being made on the carronades. I worked on centering the barrels in the gun port openings  and decided to not use the ring on the bottom of the barrel but instead use a rod. The rod will act as an axel for the mounts. A slot was cut across the barrel and then a 1/32" rod was soldered into the slot. 

 

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Instead of the wooden mounts I made mine from copper and soldered the pieces together. Using an idea I found in another post I took a 1/32" by 3/32" brass strip and cut a groove the length an then laid a brass tube in the groove. Tacked them together with silver solder and soft soldered the entire length creating fillets. Sliced of the 1/16" mounts like a loaf of bread.  When the mounts are glued to the sled the axle will be held fast.

 

Cutting the groove for the tube

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 Completed mounts and carronade

 

Well now its on to the sleds

 

Stay well and stay safe

Will   :pirate41:

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  • 2 weeks later...

Finished the belaying pins 125 total more than enough but I'm sure some will break during rigging. Started making the roller slides for beneath the carronade slides. I used a brass square tube cut to length then drilled holes for roller axels. Cut slices of brass tube at correct width for the rollers and after cutting off one side of the square tube leaving a channel. Used brass rod

 

for the axels and pushed it all together. A small drop of silver solder on the ends of the axels keeps it all together. Just need to blacken and they'll be ready to use.

 

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I've been working on the longboat and am now touching up the paint after the cap rail, rubbing strip, stem, keel and stern post I'll post results when the project is finished. Okay I'm putting off the carronades since I don't like the look of the breech ring and the mounting pieces so I'd better get back to it. The mounting pieces I'd made were to unfinished looking so I took a couple and filed the sides and the overall shape. I like them better now with a smoother look. So I did 2 and now only 30 to go. hahaha 

I'm going to change the breech rings to look more as they were part of the casting rather than added on. I saw one post where the rings were made from wire/rod and inserted into holes drilled in the carronade body. When soldered the fillet should give the appearance of being one piece.

 

Well that it for now I'll let you know how it all turns out

 

Stay well and Stay safe

Will  :pirate41:


 

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  • 1 month later...

2 Months later:

Many thanks Patrick, Robin, Steven and all the others with likes and kind comments. I've been busy working on small projects taking a break from Syren. I found the three step kits from Model Expo designed by David Antscherl to be very helpful and a great learning experience.

 

Now back to Syren

Since my last post I painted the carronade sleds made the rings for rigging painted the guns assembled all 16.

 

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The hardest part was adjusting the leveling screw to get the barrels equally leveled and symmetrical in the gun ports. I had to label each gun to each port but even the best laid plans can go awry. I put a piece of blue masking tape under each sled and after a couple of days most of them pealed the bottom and i had to start over. This time I used a magic marker to number them.

 

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you can see the second gun is lever but not centered in the port so this is why it took so long to get a symmetrical appearance. After too much fiddling I got them to be somewhat satisfactory. 

 

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I cleaned the deck and started rigging port one (starboard and port) breech lines.

 

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Having a look at how crowded the deck will be with the guns mounted I decided to rig each as I place them. With lines rigged to blocks having an eye and hook I decided to rig the 4 lines and mount them to the eye bolts with the hooks. I'm going to make a fixture to hold the blocks while I string the rigging lines. TBD

Until then I need to make 128 eye hooks. (going to have some fun now_

First I took the kit blocks and put them in the block tumbler to smooth off the corners and make a more round shape. Next I broached the holes with a drill to ensure the rigging line will pass through them without problems. To stain the blocks I dipped them in pre-stain and then in light oak stain. Not happy with the results some blocks are almost black others are a white oak color. What gives? I'll live with it as I don't want to spend anymore money on this kit.

To make the eye hooks that would be correct to scale (imo) I made a simple fixture consisting of a piece of wood with two holes for pins. I used #9 silk pins of .028 diameter.

 

Using 26AWG bare copper wire for the hook and eye. I wrapped the wire around the pin and the resulting i.d. was .03 (2" diameter ring)

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Silver soldered the ring to give it the strength to retain shape during rigging

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Cut off one leg and placed the ring on the pin wrapping the lasting leg around the second pin

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The resulting ring/hook 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Back working on the Syren again after a brief interruption. Finished the oars and rudder for the longboat. Made more rope for the carronade rigging. The strands of Aurifil Mako 50wt make a .008 dia rope for rigging so I made 60 feet and hope that will be enough. One carronade rigged only fifteen to go. Yippee. Many thanks to Thomas Gahm for his help will the tooling and his method of coiling. 

Day off modeling tomorrow looking forward to family day touring Tovar Castle in Phoenix and then out to dinner with our girls. They grow up so fast but they are still our girls even though they are on their own.

 

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Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will   :pirate41:

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  • 2 weeks later...

Finally got back to working on the Syren. Completed half of the carronade rigging and made the balance of the breech lines. Slow progress but I think I will be able to work more steadily and get more done. At the half way point its beginning to feel like the end is in sight.

 

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Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

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Started with the aft grate and companionway measuring the plans and then measuring the furnished 1/16" x 1/8" strip. Measured print dimensions were not very practical sizes so I then measured the strip and found it to be undersized not much but enough to cause issues. Then I used the print as a pattern and cut the coaming  and lap joints. It seemed to work nicely so I dry fit them and then overlaid the coaming upon the grating. Major surprise the grating opening is 10 x 13 grating ribs so I'm going this direction. Reading Chucks caution about staining before glueing seems to be problematic because of the deck radius and softening the coaming sides  would require sanding after staining. Looking at the plans and dry fit parts I think if you carefully glue all the residue will be under the whole assembly so tomorrow i'll start assembly. 

 

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Using the cutting mat as a square reference the coaming appears to be square and ready for tomorrow.

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

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Spent the day making the coaming, cannon ball rails, planking for the capstan, and grate got everything done for staining tomorrow. To make the cannon ball rests I used a burr in the mill and bored a depth 1/3rd of the ball diameter.

 

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These are the finished ball rails

 

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Glued the the coaming together and then softened the outside edges with a 5 degree bevel . (hard to see but it does soften the piece) I used holly for the capstan planking to match the deck planking which is also holly. Glued the 6 pieces together and sanded to fit the coaming and the surface of the decking. Assembled the grating and sanded to fit the opening and carefully glued to bottom with diluted white glue. 

 

Dry fit everything together ready for staining and glueing

 

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A few small gaps the are filled when the assembly is pushed together. Staining tomorrow and start the capstan, companionway, and ladder. Probably next week to complete.

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

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OOPS! on the last post I mentioned using Holly for the capstan planking but I used Alaskan Yellow Cedar for the capstan planking. I got confused as I was sorting wood for the Emma C. Berry next in line and Holly will be used for the deck planking. Sorry about that, my bad.

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will  :pirate41:

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Spent the day assembling the capstan after cleaning the char from the pieces. Tomorrow I'll finish the wedges and sand preparation for staining.

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Have the top piece painted and just need the final coat of paint before glueing the whole assembly together. The wedges are another matter that will have to be made and fit individually and I do this after I complete the prep sanding prior to staining.

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will  :pirate41:

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Another day and more parts made. I wasn't happy with the whelps spacing so I ripped it apart and started again. The good news is the kit had extra whelps as a couple didn't come off cleanly. I cleaned up the whelps and started again but trying to get the spacing and parallelism was driving me crazy is I gave up and cheated.

I took the 1/4" rod and put it in the rotating vice mounted on the mill an cut 8 .010 deep grooves using a 1/8" cutter. This gave me a flat equal distant parallel surfaces onto glue the whelps.

 

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Whelps done I could then glue everything up and stain the capstan and move on to the companionway and ladder. I decided to use the Basswood on the companionway just for uniformity. I cut up the wood for the companionway sides and glued them together using brown glue to highlight the seams. The ladder was pretty straight forward as I used the plans for a template. I scored the sides where the step mount with a knife and then filed a triangular groove using the score. The ends of the steps were lightly sanded to a 45 degree angle slipping into the groove. Pretty happy with the result for my first ladder.

 

 

Quick photo of the finished coaming, grid, capstan, ladder and one side of the companionway.

 

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Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

 

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completed companionway only need to mount doors (stain drying) handles then glue to the deck and not sure if I should put ladder in before glueing the companionway and coaming. Any ideas will help. Started the binnacle cut up parts and stained then assembled the basic structure. Spent the day and it sure doesn't seem like much was done with the time spent staining & glueing.

 

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I had purchased Chucks long gun carriages awhile back and since the is next after the binnacle I opened the bag and started the assembly. Never worked on laser cut Alaskan Yellow Cedar but it has a very sharp line. No stuttering steps in the cuts. Kit is going together smoothly and I think it will look good painted. More to come

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will

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Completed the companionway and binnacle and haven't glued them to the deck. I'm trying to decide to wait until the long guns and steering are complete and rigged. It seems that it makes more sense to have the deck empty while doing the rigging, not sure so i'll wait until the cannons and wheel are done to get a clear picture of how much room there will be left. My kit didn't have the cannons so I bought Chucks cannons and carriages. I got one done ready for painting and tomorrow i'll put the other carriage together. I need to research if breech rings are required or was the breech line around the cannons end ball.

 

Completed companionway and binnacle

 

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Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

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I wasn't happy with how the companionway looked the planking appeared to big and the stain was mottled in color so I went back and looked at several logs to see how others had made their companionways and decided to make modifications to mine. I didn't like how the roof edges were finished so I took the roof off and made a new roof out of alaskan yellow cedar. The plans call for planking of 1/8" wide but at scale that would be a plank of 8" wide so without changing the side I added a moulding framework around the perimeter as others had done. It visually took away for the wide planks so I was happy with the result.

 

Here is the new companionway with modifications and cleaned up stain.

 

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The photo tells all and I also finished the binnacle with the bell

I started the long gun carriages from Chuck. They are a pleasure to put together as the laser cutting on the hardwood is much better than the basswood. I got the primed and the first coat of paint a little sanding and more paint tomorrow.

 

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With all the waiting for glue, stain and paint to dry I started the wheel mini-kit from Chuck. I went together easier than I had thought it would. Nice surprise. After turning all the spokes I realized that cutting them to the same length will require some sort of a fixture to lay them in while cutting. I think I have an idea of how to mill out a slot with a perpendicular slit to cut in. We will see tomorrow.

 

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I also will have to make a fixate to hold the center hub and outside ring in place while glueing the spokes. Not sure about this yet.

 

More to come

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

 

 

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Thanks everyone for the likes and looking in on my progress.

Finished the ships wheel assembly and the basic sanding getting ready for staining. All the worry and trepidation about putting the spokes in the center hub and the outside ring was for naught. Having so many spare spokes I decided to try my 80 year old eyes and hands a go to assemble the wheel. I sort of followed Gahms method but didn't use paper instead I glued the outer ring to the jig with lepage white glue. It's water soluble so it came right off with just a drop of water and 5 minutes waiting. Used a pointed toothpick to hold the center star in place with the jig hole. Went in and had lunch. When glue dried turned over the wheel and glued the outer ring sections and again the toothpick for the center disc. A lot of delicate sanding and more to go. 

Cleaned the char from the wheels' support legs and sanded them for staining, still need to soften the edges of the supports before staining. I used a 3/16" rod to turn the rope drum to 5/32" leaving the ends at 3/16" rather than centering and glueing the furnished discs. While in the lathe drilled a hole in the center for a toothpick to press into with the wheel and drum able to rotate through the support legs.

 

Dry fit everything and set on the deck to admire my work. My hands still work on these tiny pieces but I did learn I need new/better tweezers my old ones keep twisting on the part being held.

 

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I gotta go back and check the companionway door I know its straight maybe the camera angle but I will go check tomorrow.

 

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More finish sanding but I'm pretty happy with the results.

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will  :pirate41:

 

 

 

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Completed the wheel assembly, cannon carriages and cannons. I must say that the Syren steering wheel mini-kit is fantastic. I really enjoyed working with this wonderful project all the parts fit perfectly without and modifications except removing the char. The hardest part was turning the spokes but with so many extra I made them all and the last were better than the first. Spent a large amount of time sanding the wheel so the stain would be a consistent color. 

Finished painting the cannon carriages now only need to radius the axles on one more carriage. Need to make the pinion straps holding the cannons in the carriages and the rigging rings. Painted the cannons and letting the paint harden before any handling.

 

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Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

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Made some sample rope using the Mara polyester thread and Chucks recipe for sizes and baking. I had to bake at 375 degrees in my toaster oven to get a fixed rope. Many thanks to Chuck Passaro for the Rope Rocket and Serv-O-Matic. I can't recommend them enough they are great tools to have.

 

I made 3 sizes of rope

 

The first used 3 strings of Mara 120 to make .008 rope

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The second used 3 strings of Mara 70 to make .020 rope

 

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The third used 4 strings of Mara 30 to make a .028/9 rope

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This rope is fantastic to handle keeping a shape and no fuzzy. I'll be using this in the future.

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

 

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niwotwill, your ship is amazing!  The metalwork alone is stunning, but your miniature work and attention to detail are incredible.  I'll be coming back to your build log just to "watch and learn", although my newbie skill level is far below attempting anything like this!  (I'm impressed with the rope-making! I may have to try this sometime!)

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Thanks for the comments and likes it keeps me motivated.

I discovered a problem with the cannon  carriages from Chucks kit. They are too big and intrude into the tiller rigging area so i've gone back to the kit pieces. First step is to remove everything from the boards. I glued the sides, axles, transom and bolster together making the basic shape of the carriage. This made it easier to remove and smooth the char from the edges.

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 In the closeup you can see the char stutter (my description) and assembled it was easier to keep everything evenly smoothed.

 

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The char removed and the axles rounded for the wheels to be fitted.

Next I glued the stool bed (there description) and inserted a 1/32th brass rod. When all this had dried it was time to paint the primer. I borrowed using automotive rattle can primer method from David Antscherl. It makes a nice surface for the paint to adhere. Sprayed the parts in my makeshift spray booth (cardboard box outside) and left to dry.

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While drying I made the quoin handles again using toothpicks. (great wood)

 

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Paint dried had to see how everything looked

 

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While paint drying I removed the char from the trucks again using toothpicks. The manual says the trucks are two sizes larger in front but trucks in my kit are all the same size so I might use the trucks from Chucks kit.

 

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Red paint starts tomorrow

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

 

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Thanks for all the looks and likes. 😀

Good couple days of work finally finished cannons and associated items. Got the crate, tiller and rings, carriages painted, wheels mounted, quoins glued, cannons mounted with caps and the rigging complete. After rigging steering it is on to starting the pumps and then on to chapter 13 and hopefully a lucky chapter 13.

First was to finish the grating clearing the way to work on the cannons.

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Next was the tiller and rings

The tiller was made from a 1/8" by 1/8" yellow cedar and carved to shape and as Chuck suggested I made it thinner that the drawings. I made the rings mounting with a hammered flat 22awg bare copper wire and soldered the two rigging rings. A stainless wire holds the tiller in position waiting to be  stained, painted and glued.

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Deck furniture placed to show how everything will fit.

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Tomorrow to rig the steering ropes and then on the pumps.

 

Stay Well and Stay Safe

Will :pirate41:

 

 

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