Jump to content

Rigging and tension

Recommended Posts

Hello everyone,


I keep asking myself if I should rig a model so that the rope has high tension or or keep the ropes rather loose (but not hanging through) to avoid stressing splicings and seizings. What is the best compromise?


Best regards,


Current Build:

HM Brig Badger 1/48 from Caldercraft plans

Le Coureur 1/48 by CAF

Completed Build:

Armed Virginia Sloop 1/48 by Model Shipways / Gallery
HM Cutter Sherbourne 1/64 by Caldercraft / Gallery

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think you've sort of answered your own question. Otherwise, it depends on the "rope." Standing rigging is always going to be relatively tight. Running rigging is also generally belayed without slack, but, depending upon the application and circumstance, may be left slack and portrayed with a catenary, as may be appropriate. (These details should be easy to recognize if you understand how your prototype vessel sailed in real life.) For example, a leeward lazy jack set up on a model portrayed as under sail, will be slack, as would a running backstay under the same circumstances, although the running back might have been carried forward and lashed to an after shroud or the like to keep it from flogging around if no short tacking was anticipated. You should consider how you are portraying your model and run the rigging accordingly. Remember, too, that the rigging tension on the model accumulates as the tension of each item of rigging is added and, by the time the model is done, can represent a fair amount of energy built into the model. If you are rigging it too tightly, you'll know soon enough when things start popping loose all over the place or spars start snapping! :D


Link to comment
Share on other sites

What Bob said.  But I'll add, pull the line through a block of wax/paraffin (a candle will work) a few times and then pull though your fingers.  The was will help do two things... 1) It will help keep moisture out of the line and 2) It will make any sag look more realistic.

"The shipwright is slow, but the wood is patient." - me

Current Build:                                                                                             
Past Builds:
 La Belle Poule 1765 - French Frigate from ANCRE plans - ON HOLD           Triton Cross-Section   

 NRG Hallf Hull Planking Kit                                                                            HMS Sphinx 1775 - Vanguard Models - 1:64               


Non-Ship Model:                                                                                         On hold, maybe forever:           

CH-53 Sikorsky - 1:48 - Revell - Completed                                                   Licorne - 1755 from Hahn Plans (Scratch) Version 2.0 (Abandoned)         



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...