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James H

Zulu 'Lady Isabella' by James H - Vanguard Models - 1:64

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Evening all!

 

Well, I wasn't going to post a log of this until it was either quite advanced or finished. However, I figured that I could well have some serious free time coming my way courtesy of coronavirus, so I may as well spend some time and get this online. This model is a production prototype of Chris Watton's forthcoming 1:64 Zulu-class herring fisher, 'Lady Isabella'. 

 

From Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scottish_east_coast_fishery)

 

Quote

The Zulu

In 1879, Lossiemouth fisherman, William "Dad" Campbell came up with a radical design for his new boat. It had the vertical stem of the Fifie and the steeply raked stern of the Skaffie, and he called this boat Nonesuch, registration number INS 2118. She was relatively small, 52 feet (16 m) overall with a 39-foot keel length (12 m). The Nonesuch had her registration closed on 12 January 1901 after having been broken up. The Zulu War raging in South Africa at the time gave the name to this new class of boat.

 

The Zulu boats were built to the carvel method of planking. The shape of the Zulus gave the boats a long deck but a shorter keel, which greatly improved their manoeuvrability. Zulus were two-masted boats and carried three sails - a dipping lug fore, a standing lug mizzen and a jib. The sails were very heavy and difficult to haul, and the masts had to be very long and strong. Masts could be 60 feet (18 m) tall on boats of 80 feet (24 m) in length. Their design produced very fast boats that became invaluable to herring fishing fleets. They got to the fishing grounds quickly and returned swiftly with the catch. Because of these qualities, the Zulus rapidly became very popular along the entire east coast. As the 20th century approached, steam capstans were introduced, and this made the hauling of the sails and nets much easier for the crews. One of the best of those was the capstans patented and built by MacDonald Brothers of Portsoy, in 1908.

 

Here are some of Chris's photos of these very parts:

 

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Here is my recent preview of this model, as the kit I received wasn't a finished product (no box, manual, sails, rig blocks and cord etc) 

 

Ok, on with the show...

 

First of all, all MDF parts were removed from the two sheets. All parts are laser-engraved with numbers and some writing, so they are easy to identify. You'll also note some engraved bevelling lines on some bulkheads too. You'll tend to find that the tags that hold the parts to their sheets, are positioned in unobtrusive positions, such as the top of the bulkheads which will eventually be cut away. With all parts removed I did a quick test fit of the main parts.

 

DSC_1594.jpg

DSC_1595.jpg

 

Before any work starts, the superstructure needs to be assembled. To do this, it needs to be put together and glued while sat on top of the false lower deck. This is only to make sure everything is square, and it must not be glued to that part. Note some parts have engraved labels to help orientate them. I mostly use Titebond glue for my work.

 

DSC_1598.jpg

DSC_1599.jpg

 

It was now the turn of the bulkheads to be paid a little attention. Those which have a more acute bevel are engraved as such. Using a Dremel, I removed all the excess material from them on a sedate 9000RPM speed. The Dremel is also used to grind the MDF to the bearding lines on the infilled parts.

DSC_1601.jpg

 

All bulkheads are now glued into position on the false keel, but this time I use white glue (Evo Stick PVA) as this dries more slowly than Titebond, and allows me some wiggle room until all parts are in place. The kit is made so tolerances are reasonably tight, so you can't really get anything wrong here. The false lower deck has text on it to define the upper side.

DSC_1607.jpg

 

Chris has selected birch ply for the main deck lower surface. This makes it quite pliable. This is important because you need to be able to flex it slightly at this stage. Each bulkhead has the temporary timberheads notched. The deck slides into these to there's no reason to pin it at the edges. The deck just snaps into position perfectly and site perfectly across the top of the bulkheads.

DSC_1615.jpg

 

I didn't do a test fit of that deck. I figured that once in place, it wasn't coming out again to easily, so I decided to paint some Titebond around the joints from the underside.

DSC_1609.jpg

 

I almost forgot to add the reinforcement pieces 7a to either side of bulkhead 7. It didn't matter too much though as fitting them afterwards meant that I could slide them right in underneath the deck and bang into the perfect position.

 

DSC_1612.jpg

 

More soon!

 

 

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Very nice start. It is always exciting to discover a new model from Chris Watton.

Could you post a picture of the finished model, or at least what it is supposed to look like?

 

Thanks

Yves

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5 minutes ago, yvesvidal said:

Very nice start. It is always exciting to discover a new model from Chris Watton.

Could you post a picture of the finished model, or at least what it is supposed to look like?

 

Thanks

Yves

 

I will when I've finished it 🤣

 

Here's a pic of a very old model of one of these. 

 

Screenshot 2020-03-16 at 14.46.00.png

 

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I wish this kit would be offered at the scale of 1/32nd. It would go so well with many other fishing boas such as Emma C. Berry from Model Shipways and many more from European manufacturers.

 

Yves

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James,

Thanks for posting Chris' latest. What a nice looking model this will be.

Your thread indicates that your HMS Victory production prototype is "imminent." Can you please give me a best (informed) guess as to how imminent, imminent is?🤔😂

 

Cheers,

Ron

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10 minutes ago, hollowneck said:

 

Your thread indicates that your HMS Victory production prototype is "imminent." Can you please give me a best (informed) guess as to how imminent, imminent is?🤔😂

 

 

Ok....Amati will, theoretically, have the laser and PE stuff at the beginning of April, so if all goes to plan, I should have for latest mid-April. BUT....who knows what curveballs coronavirus will throw at us. It's already caused a slight delay, and that was before a nationwide lockdown. 

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5 hours ago, James H said:

Here's a pic of a very old model of one of these. 

I love boats with lateen sails. I'm anxiously awaiting to see more of your build. 

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The school I work at closed today due to a confirmed case of coronavirus, and even though it will partially reopen in 2 days, after a deep clean, at-risk staff such as myself who has an underlying health condition, have been told to stay away for a month. Well, I couldn't waste any workshop time, so I got straight into the man cave and worked on Lady Isabella. Amati's sanding block had its baptism of fire when I faired the bulkheads in readiness for the planks. Thanks to previously bevelling the pre-engraved bulkheads, doing the rest only took about an hour, and in that short time I also got something to eat! 

DSC_1618.jpg

 

 

The pearwood keel is presented in three parts which plug into the false keel. The lower keel and stern keel part are now glued into he hull. Even though you can't really get this wrong, the kit supplies some MDF clamps to slide over the assembly to ensure all is straight and even. In these photos, you can see the stem keel section in place, but at this stage, it must only be dry-fitted to test.

DSC_1619.jpg

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The pear bulwarks are supplied in two parts per side and are engraved on the inner faces. Engraving is for the timberhead and lower/upper deck levels. These parts are 1mm and need to be soaked in water for 5 minutes before they can be manipulated. There is a slot on the stern keel into where the bulwark slides. All parts were wet-fitted to the hull and left to dry before removing.

DSC_1625.jpg

 

 

All parts are now fitted to the hull with Titebond glue, making sure the deck level is correct along the length. It's worth mentioning there is also a slot in the stem keep for the bulwark, but this isn't critical because the bulwarks are left slightly long to allow for any variation that the modeller might accidentally introduce. Some brass pins were pushed into the lower edges of the bulwark so the properly touched the bulkheads. Clamps were used above decks. 

DSC_1631.jpg

 

 

Whilst this lot was drying, I thought I'd work on the superstructure. There are some little pear pegs that fit into the MDF core. These are pushed into place and then the external pear fascias are glued. The fit is a little tight but that's so you get everything properly aligned. 

DSC_1624.jpg

DSC_1633.jpg

 

Next.....planking.

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38 minutes ago, James H said:

The school I work at closed today due to a confirmed case of coronavirus, and even though it will partially reopen in 2 days, after a deep clean, at-risk staff such as myself who has an underlying health condition, have been told to stay away for a month. Well, I couldn't waste any workshop time, so I got straight into the man cave and worked on Lady Isabella. Amati's sanding block had its baptism of fire when I faired the bulkheads in readiness for the planks. Thanks to previously bevelling the pre-engraved bulkheads, doing the rest only took about an hour, and in that short time I also got something to eat! 

DSC_1618.jpg

The pearwood dust will keep you healthy. Great progress so far.

 

Yves

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9 minutes ago, NewbyMark said:

Looks another very nice kit from Chris. Do you know when this would be available for purchase?

 

I think the plan is around 2 months. 

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1 hour ago, James H said:

 

I think the plan is around 2 months. 

Yes, that is the plan. (Assuming the whole world isn't in shut down mode by then..). I intend to release both the 80 foot Zulu (Lady Isabella) and the 70 foot Fifie (Lady Eleanor) together. There will be pre-made sail sets for both as an optional extra.

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On 3/17/2020 at 12:54 PM, James H said:

Next.....planking.

James, I saw a photo of this boat that you posted in the coronavirus topic that showed you tapering the planks and installing them.

 

2013748773_ScreenShot2020-03-20at12_28_08PM.thumb.png.da2b7ddfa69da20e0d5a6a147a107c3e.png

 

I have a couple of simple questions about the plank tapering process that you use. Do you always taper the plank on the bottom edge only and then glue that tapered plank to the previous one so that the untapered, top edge meets the tapered bottom edge of the previous plank? I assume that the top edge of the planks are never tapered, only the bottom edges? Is that correct?

 

Secondly, do you chamfer the edge of the plank before installing it if necessary? If so, how do you typically decide if the top edge of the plank needs to be chamfered? Do you chamfer the whole plank from end to end or just in places that seem necessary?

 

Newbie questions...thanks very much. 

 

 

 

 

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12 minutes ago, BobG said:

James, I saw a photo of this boat that you posted in the coronavirus topic that showed you tapering the planks and installing them.

 

2013748773_ScreenShot2020-03-20at12_28_08PM.thumb.png.da2b7ddfa69da20e0d5a6a147a107c3e.png

 

I have a couple of simple questions about the plank tapering process that you use. Do you always taper the plank on the bottom edge only and then glue that tapered plank to the previous one so that the untapered, top edge meets the tapered bottom edge of the previous plank? I assume that the top edge of the planks are never tapered, only the bottom edges? Is that correct?

 

Secondly, do you chamfer the edge of the plank before installing it if necessary? If so, how do you typically decide if the top edge of the plank needs to be chamfered? Do you chamfer the whole plank from end to end or just in places that seem necessary?

 

Newbie questions...thanks very much. 

 

 

 

 

 

Hi Bob,

I run the plank along the previous and where it stops flowing naturally and looks like it wants to run over the previous, I make a pencil mark. I then take a look at the end of the plank and see the overlap of the previous and mark it. Those marks are then joined up and cut to add a taper. Where the curve of the bulkhead demands it, I will bevel the top edge of the new plank so it butts up close.

 

It probably isn't the best and most accurate way of doing it, and yes, I have to fit stealers into some gaps, but with the second layer, I'll make sure that anything like that is hidden under the painted area. 

 

I really should learn how Chuck does it so it's a little neater, but it works well on this and other painted hulls.

 

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On 3/18/2020 at 10:40 PM, chris watton said:

Yes, that is the plan. (Assuming the whole world isn't in shut down mode by then..). I intend to release both the 80 foot Zulu (Lady Isabella) and the 70 foot Fifie (Lady Eleanor) together. There will be pre-made sail sets for both as an optional extra.

Thanks Chris. Are you in a position to confirm the price or is that still to be determined? I really love the subject and the quality of the kit. Thoroughly enjoying the Speedy kit as well - really so well designed.

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14 minutes ago, NewbyMark said:

Thanks Chris. Are you in a position to confirm the price or is that still to be determined? I really love the subject and the quality of the kit. Thoroughly enjoying the Speedy kit as well - really so well designed.

Not quite in a position yet, but my aim was to get the Zulu for around the £145 price range and the Fifie for around £125. They may end up costing a little more, as the amount of pearwood in the kits, the Zulu especially, is quite a lot, but what the hell...

 

Sails will be sold separately as they are very expensive to have made, so if they were included, the cost of the kit would be a lot higher, and perhaps some do not want, or would prefer to make their own.

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6 minutes ago, chris watton said:

Not quite in a position yet, but my aim was to get the Zulu for around the £145 price range and the Fifie for around £125. They may end up costing a little more, as the amount of pearwood in the kits, the Zulu especially, is quite a lot, but what the hell...

 

Sails will be sold separately as they are very expensive to have made, so if they were included, the cost of the kit would be a lot higher, and perhaps some do not want, or would prefer to make their own.

Thanks - I'm sure you will sell more than a few. I planned to start a scratch build after my Speedy as a long term project, but I am sorely tempted by your kit! I think a Zulu will need sails, but I'd probably prefer to make my own.....

 

It will take me ages to finish the Speedy so I doubt I will be in a position to purchase immediately on release, but I will keep an eye on your website! Thanks for the quick reply.

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Maybe I should do a small update.

 

I've had time to do some planking during my enforced isolation. Here you see the hull with the pear bulwarks installed. Underneath that is a lime wood plank with a naturally guessed taper. PVA is used for these, and my trusty Amati nail pusher.

DSC_1636.jpg

DSC_1638.jpg

 

 

Limewood planks are now fitted and tapered where the natural lie of the planks overlaps the previous. That bow sure looks ugly with those over length planks. That will now be cut back and tidied up.

DSC_1639.jpg

 

 

With the bow tidied up, the stem keel section is finally glue into place. This fits like a dream with no ambiguity.

DSC_1643.jpg

 

 

The pear wood keel is to be lined with an external layer, creating the rabbet that the second layer planks will fit into. Before this though, the key parts are fitted.

DSC_1644.jpg

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Those keel facing parts are now added...

DSC_1648.jpg

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Here you see how the rudder sockets are created with the keel face parts.

DSC_1651.jpg

 

 

Now, the garboard planks are pre-cut. This is to help the modeller with the curvature at both bow and stern. These are an excellent fit. To start, I dry fit the stern side garboard plank. When I have achieved a good fit, I make a couple of pencil marks to absolutely determine its position. The plank is then removed and Gorilla Glue CA Gel is applied to it and the plank slipped into the keel rebate before being shaped into the stern curve. 

DSC_1652.jpg

DSC_1653.jpg

 

 

There same now applies to the stem garboard plank. This is the result.

DSC_1654.jpg

 

 

 

More soon!

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1 hour ago, chris watton said:

They may end up costing a little more, as the amount of pearwood in the kits, the Zulu especially, is quite a lot, but what the hell...

Totally worth it in my opinion. I am more than willing to pay a little extra for high quality materials. Thanks for doing this, Chris.

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