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HMS Speedy by Delf - Vanguard Models - Scale 1:64 - Master Shipwright edition


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On 4/29/2020 at 3:34 PM, Vane said:

The stern is actually a section that i would like to see more photos in the manual. I have just finished mine and it was a little more tricky to do than the rest of the model.

 

There will be new photos showing this in the Flirt manual.

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Some fiddly work on the prow, starting with the laser cut bow rails and various photoetch parts for the vertical bow rails and prow decoration. 

 

The PE parts are painted yellow ochre, with the recessed central parts painted a contrasting blue or black (I chose black). Chris suggests painting the parts yellow first, but I didn't think I'd be able to do the recessed parts neatly enough and avoid getting black on the yellow, so I did it the other way round - painting the black first, cleaning the raised bits carefully with a fine file, then painting them yellow:

 

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The next task was fitting the bow rails, which proved tricky. The main problem was that there were  gaps between the bow rails and the vertical rails that are meant to join them to the prow. I decided that this was because the bow rails were too straight. Rather take them off the model I managed to bend them in situ with my trusty hot air gun. I wet the rail with a finger dipped in water, pushed it inwards with the stick and blasted it with hot air until dry. Miraculously it stayed curved enough to touch the vertical rails. In the photo below I've already done the port side. Btw, I'm not pushing on the stick as both hands were busy holding the air gun and my phone!

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As a minor aside, I think Chris originally intended that the ends of the vertical rails should locate in holes in the bow rails. The PE parts had little lugs on their ends (which I cut off to make them fit), and if you look carefully at the photos in the manual the bow rails have holes. Anyway, that's not how the design ended up and it works fine.

 

Remaining details were relatively straightforward - catheads, knigtheads etc. I departed from the instructions by not painting the crown on the end of the cathead yellow. I figured Cochrane could have afforded a bit of gold leaf so I left the neat little photoetch crown unpainted.

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Back to the stern next.

 

Derek

 

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Thanks as always for the likes and supportive comments.

 

A Diversion

 

I had intended to complete work on the rudder, but when I removed its protective covering I started having second thoughts about the laser etched deck. There are patterns in the surface of the deck that catch the light and give the impression, to my eye, of marks and shadows. 

 

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I tried a couple of surface treatments - shellac and matte polyurethane varnish, but these both tended to magnify the patterns rather than hide them. 

 

I suspect that these patterns stand out more on a clear deck, and would tend to be masked once all the normal fittings are in place. However, after much internal debate I decided to lay my own planking on top. After a couple of experiments I found I could mill planks consistently just under 0.5mm - about 1 inch full size, which shouldn't add appreciably to the thickness of the deck. I also found I could loosen the catheads just enough to slip these planks under them.

 

I started with the margin plank. I knew I wouldn't be able to bend a plank laterally to follow the bulwarks so I had no option but to cut the curved sections from wider sheets of boxwood. The following pictures show the process for one section.

 

Milling the sheet:

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Photocopying the plan, sticking the margin plank to the boxwood sheet, cutting it out and trying it for size:

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I've now got all the margin planks in place and I'm starting on the planking proper.

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This will take some time, as I plan to joggle the planks into the margin planks. I hope I don't end up regretting this decision!

 

Derek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Even though the etched deck is fantastic I do think that if you have the inclination and or the time an individually planked deck does add a certain something to a build, so I applaud your decision to go down this route. 

Speedy is looking fab 👍😁

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The head rails look great Derek, certainly a cut above some I’ve seen on kits, and together with the stern are key features on a model, very nicely done.

 

Interesting discovery about the etched deck, but if you’re not happy you are best to take the long route and individually plank. At least you have a laying pattern already worked out.

 

I’m off to scrutinise the etched deck on my Fifie now 🤔

 

B.E.

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Thanks Edward, Glenn and Blue Ensign. I agree, the head rails are much better than others I've seen. 

 

On 5/19/2020 at 4:35 PM, Blue Ensign said:

At least you have a laying pattern already worked out.

I wish. Unfortunately Chris shows the deck planks tapering towards the stern - a refinement I feel neither capable nor inclined to follow. Neither am I mitring planks around hatch openings - I just feel the detail will be hidden too much by coamings to make it worthwhile. I also found it difficult to work out the butt shift pattern on the etched deck. In the end I just decided to go for 20' plank lengths, 9" wide  (95mm X 3.5mm scale), following the 4-shift pattern described by Longridge in his Anatomy of Nelson's Ships (see here for details).

 

One detail in the kit I am following is joggling - despite the fact that I'm not sure the normal rules are followed on the etched deck. My understanding is that you only joggle a plank into the margin if the snipe (the length of the plank that needs to be cut on the diagonal) is more than twice the width of the plank. On that basis, several planks either side of the mid-line in the bows would not be joggled - they would simply be cut on the diagonal across their full width to sit against the margin plank. However - and this is where appearance trumps realism for me (sorry purists!) - I just like the look of the joggling right the way round the margin plank. In a perverse (and probably masochistic) way I'm quite enjoying the task of chiselling out the necessary shapes and trying to get them as neat as possible. Here's progress so far:

 

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You'll note I had to remove the catheads. I tried to work under or round them but it wasn't practical. Fortunately I was able to free them without damage.

 

Finally I must repeat my thanks to the two Glenns for two of their recommendations that are helping me greatly with this deck work. The first is the Super 'Phatic aliphatic resin recommended by Scarborough Glenn (see here), which I'm using to glue the planks. This works so fast it's almost like CA - a few seconds and it's stuck enough to lay flat against the sheer and solid enough to trim.  It has really speeded up my deck laying. The second is the doggy dental tool recommended by Texas Glenn (see here). This is now my go-to tool for removing excess glue, and any general small scraping jobs. Not sure how I ever managed without it.

 

 

Derek

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Very ambitious and well done with the joggling, I learned a new word. I’m sure you’ve thought to check your cannons fitting in the gun ports with the additional .6mm deck height. 
 

The dentist tool remains one of my most often used tool, glad it’s helping you as well. 

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1 hour ago, glbarlow said:

I’m sure you’ve thought to check your cannons fitting in the gun ports with the additional .6mm deck height. 

Hi Glenn

 

I’ve double checked and I’m ok 👍

56 minutes ago, Bill Morrison said:

  I just ordered my own . . .

That’s great Bill - I’m sure you won’t be disappointed. Vanguard Models is a one-man band, and that man is Chris Watton. Check out his update topic on this forum (I’m on my iPhone so can’t provide the link). It’s great to follow Chris’s updates as he designs and produces new kits, and he’s always open to suggestions for improvements and new models from fellow forum members. 
 

Best wishes

 

Derek

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4 hours ago, DelF said:

Hi Glenn

 

I’ve double checked and I’m ok 👍

That’s great Bill - I’m sure you won’t be disappointed. Vanguard Models is a one-man band, and that man is Chris Watton. Check out his update topic on this forum (I’m on my iPhone so can’t provide the link). It’s great to follow Chris’s updates as he designs and produces new kits, and he’s always open to suggestions for improvements and new models from fellow forum members. 
 

Best wishes

 

Derek

Derek, 

 

That's great to hear!  Again, I am most impressed with your model. You are doing a great job!

 

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1 minute ago, Bill Morrison said:

Derek, 

 

That's great to hear!  Again, I am most impressed with your model. You are doing a great job!  I contacted www.agesofsail.com and asked them if they can carry this line.

Bill

 

1 minute ago, Bill Morrison said:

 

 

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Deck planking proceeds slowly and carefully. To break it up a bit I've started preparing and painting some of the deck furniture:

 

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I managed to lose the original flue base. However it was an easy job to knock up a replacement using the hole in the laser sheet as a template:

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It's worth taking some time preparing the laser-cut wood components - filing/sanding off char and adding little refinements like chamferred edges on the ends of beams.

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Back to joggling. Cutting the last planks on each side will be an interesting challenge!

 

Derek

 

 

 

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The initial etched deck was already beautiful but your deck planking is much more beautiful.

The time and work invested is well worth it !

 


 

 

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Thanks JpR62, Ernie and Maurice (spotted your name on the marvellous book you produced from your Alert log!), your comments are much appreciated. And thanks for all the likes.

 

I've just finished planking the deck:

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All done bar scraping and applying a finish. I prefer scraping over sanding as I find it easier to get a more even result. As for finishing, I'll probably go for shellac as it brings out the warmth of the boxwood.

 

In the photo I've included the main tools I used for the joggling. From the right, miniature Veritas chisels, a 1/16" chisel blade from scalpel makers Swann Morton, and a razor blade holder for the longer cuts. The hardest planks to fit were the wider ones next to the margin planks either side. I followed the etched deck in dividing these into three sections with scarph joints:

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On reflection, I probably should have planned the layout better to avoid the left scarph running into the joint in the next run of planks, but overall I'm pleased with the result.

 

I've said elsewhere, and I'll stress again that my decision to do my own planking is in no way a criticism of the kit. There is nothing 'wrong' with the supplied etched deck; in fact it will be a boon to many, especially relatively inexperienced builders. This won't be the only time I depart from the out-of-the-box model, but in doing so I'll be trying to further enhance the kit, not make up for deficiencies or inaccuracies. I'm convinced that the kit as supplied will produce a superb model.


Here's another example of how well the kit is designed and produced. I've taken the deck fittings off the model to finish the planking, and you can see the full extent of the bitts. In other kits I've built the bitts just sit on the upper deck and you usually have to pin them as well as glue them to ensure they are robust enough to withstand rigging under tension. Speedy's bitts on the other hand extend through the upper deck to where lugs on the bottom of each beam locate in holes in the lower deck. When I tried them for fit  each set of bitts slotted straight into its location holes in the lower deck - not through any skill on my part but because the kit is made so well everything just fits perfectly.

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My next debate is whether or not to fit a waterway for historical accuracy and to neaten up the angle between the margin  plank and the bulwarks. I'm a glutton for punishment so I probably will.

 

Derek

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7 hours ago, ErnieL said:

I’m slogging through the first plank layer on my Speedy.

I find planking is always the scariest part of the model. For me, the game changer has been edge bending as taught by Chuck Passaro.  Look under Modelling Techniques on the menu bar. Good luck, and I look forward to your update.

 

Derek

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Thanks Glenn

On 5/27/2020 at 4:03 PM, glbarlow said:

Did you make all the scarp and joggling cuts with chisels?

 

I used the miniature chisels for most of the cuts. For longer ones off the model I used the razor blade in the holder. It's marked Made in USA, but I can't remember where I got it. For longer ones on the model (ie on the margin planks, which are glued to the etched deck) I still used the miniature chisels. I cut the deck plank first, laid it on top of the margin plank, scribed round the outside with a fine point, and just carefully worked along the scribed line with the widest chisel. I did the shortest lines with the 1/16" chisel blade.  The planks are so thin it was easy to cut though them with light finger pressure on the chisel. Once I'd chiselled round the scribed line I just gently lifted the waste part from the sub-deck with the finest chisel.

 

Hope that makes sense.

 

Derek

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Today scraped the deck and applied one coat of shellac. Then I went for an easy task. Constructing the two ladders was light relief after decking for several days. Although I enjoyed doing it, joggling every strake of planks required a lot of concentration. I couldn't resist dry testing the deck furniture again just for the sheer pleasure of seeing Speedy looking more and more like a ship. I'll probably add some more coats of shellac before finally securing all the deck fittings.

 

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A few hull details tomorrow - boarding steps etc.

 

Derek

 

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24 minutes ago, DelF said:

Today scraped the deck and applied one coat of shellac

Does adding the shellac cause any issues with attaching components to the deck later? I've been tempted to coat my deck, but the satin wipe-on poly didn't really catch my eye when I tried it on a test piece but if it doesn't interfere then I'll probably start looking for a matte option.

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