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USS Cairo 1862 by MPB521 – Scale 1:48 - American Civil War Ironclad - First Scratch Build


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14 hours ago, leclaire said:

Brian - thanks for showing the screw up with your drill. I was beginning to believe you never made a mistake like us mere mortals who follow your magnificent work.

 

Bob

Bob,

 

Thank you for the kind words, but I am definitely mortal. I could probably make a whole build log out of just the mistakes I’ve made on this build alone. 😁 I usually don’t post too many of them unless I think they can be beneficial to other builders. 
 

-Brian

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11 hours ago, mtaylor said:

Good work on the port doors.   So they were actually pierced then?  For some reason, I thought they would be solid with no gun port.   And that's great finding Parrot guns.  They will look perfect.

Mark,

 

Thank you for the kind words. The pierced port doors were almost a necessity. These boats carried some big guns on them and would have taken up a lot of limited real-estate on the gun deck if they were stowed inside. The 42 & 32 pounders alone were over 10.5 feet long and weighed over four tons each. Without them being stowed through the doors the way they were, they would have been an imposing item to have to maneuver around during daily life onboard.

 

I am extremely happy with the guns (I think I may have mentioned that before). I'm glad I went the route that I did instead of the wooden ones. Thankfully my uncle was able to direct me to his friend who is a machinist. It took a while for him to get them done, but they were worth the wait. I'm anxious to get them cleaned up and dressed to see how they are going to look rigged and in place.

 

-Brian

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  • 1 month later...
Posted (edited)

Hello again Everyone,

 

I know it has been a while since my last update. Progress has slowed to a crawl lately with other projects taking priority while I can get to them. Lots of physical labor involved, and by the time I am done for the day I am just wore out and just want to kick back in the recliner and relax with a cold beverage. Temps are starting to get a LOT warmer here so I may spend some of the hotter parts of the day at the workbench instead of baking in the Texas sun. 

 

So with my lame excuses out of the way, I did get a little work done this past week, and I do mean a little.

 

I painted up one of my cannons and assembled it to the carriage. Haven't got the rigging done on it yet, I'm still sorting out how to do that. It's hard to find a good layout of how these were setup. I thought of just using the standard cannon ring for all 19th century American war ships, but the thought occurred to me that the cannon ports were also used as access to load stores and munitions, so the cannons would have most likely been pulled out and turned sideways to make room for the supplies being loaded. So the more I pondered it, the more frustrated I got on trying to figure it out and finally just set them aside for now.

 

Anyway, here is the 30lb Parrot Rifle in its carriage.

1063743372_Parrot1.JPG.7e7a9a04222ae54f744de8ce2da86fb3.JPG

 

 

Next up I decided that she finally needed a coat of paint. I'm almost to the point that I'm ready to start installing the cannon port doors, and rather than go through the trouble of painting twice I decided to go ahead and get the casemates painted up so I can then place the painted doors and make minor touch ups as needed. I think that I am going to go with all port doors in the open position. This will allow for somewhat easier viewing of the inside details, not to mention it will save me from having to get the cannons all perfectly centered on the pierced hole with them closed.

 

First coat of black going on the bow casemates.

1782309324_Bow1.JPG.6c1cf845a7394951dd224bb4af42abbe.JPG

 

Port first coat.

1848350284_Port1.JPG.05d903d53792070db94dc9fa7500739c.JPG

 

Bow after three coats of black and three coats of satin clear. I did a little texturing with the back paint on the armor plating to give it a more "wrought iron" look and feel. I thought it came out looking pretty good.

597827364_Bow2.JPG.18b669211ac8055b8afb29afb8f8c84d.JPG

 

Painted port side. I am still debating with myself as to whether or not I want to paint the inside edges of the viewing port red to symbolize the cutaway. I see this on a lot of cutaway sections and I like it, even the guys working on the St. Louis are doing it, I just don't know if the red will stick out too much and detract from the rest of the model. I still haven't made the decision yet, but there's still plenty of time.

1732733111_Port2.JPG.f1fcf50f63f5bb5855e1098d6adecf2f.JPG

 

Painted stern

Stern 1.JPG

 

And finally the overall boat painted and all masking removed. It's amazing what a few coats of paint can do to the look. It's really starting to look like an Ironclad.

1482438852_OverallPaint1.JPG.dcc9d662f0238521f20f3a0d8c303d29.JPG

 

That all for now. Thanks for sticking with me on the slow progress. Hopefully I can get more done in the coming weeks.

 

Until next time, I appreciate all the great comments and likes.

 

-Brian

 

Edited by mbp521
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Brian - I admire your idea of "slow progress" and "not getting much done". It sure looks to me like you made a whole bunch of progress.

 

Regarding your decision to paint the inside edges of the viewing ports red, you might want to consider painting them more of a maroon color rather than bright red. I agree the red would tend to detract from the overall look and using a maroon would make it more of a weathered presentation. Just a thought.

 

Bob

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Absolutely beautiful work, Brian. 

 

18 minutes ago, mbp521 said:

I thought of just using the standard cannon ring for all 19th century American war ships, but the thought occurred to me that the cannon ports were also used as access to load stores and munitions

 Brian, why not just go with the standard rigging and let the viewers imagination make the necessary connections as to what the cannon would have looked like when bringing aboard stores and munitions? 

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Posted (edited)

Wow, that looks great. You're definitely right about the paint bringing out the realistic look. Nice job on the texturing. I like the idea of a dark/rusty maroon, something that sets off the edge a little but doesn't highlight it.

 

I found a detailed painting of the Cairo's interior on another modeling forum in a log for the BlueJacket kit. Not going to directly post it here as I'm not sure about copyright issues (not even sure if it's from the kit or some other source), but here's a link. It's a bit grainy, but appears to show gun rigging that looks fairly standard for naval cannons. If it is from the kit, I wonder if you could source a good copy directly from BlueJacket? If nothing else, I bet they'd be willing to discuss their own research used to develop that kit and maybe help you find new information?

Edited by Cathead
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On 7/20/2021 at 4:47 PM, leclaire said:

Brian - I admire your idea of "slow progress" and "not getting much done". It sure looks to me like you made a whole bunch of progress.

 

Regarding your decision to paint the inside edges of the viewing ports red, you might want to consider painting them more of a maroon color rather than bright red. I agree the red would tend to detract from the overall look and using a maroon would make it more of a weathered presentation. Just a thought.

 

Bob

Bob,

 

Thank you for stopping by. It's mostly when I look back on previous posts of mine that I see a lot more pictures in them than my last that makes it look like not a whole lot of work was done. In reality, the most time consuming work of my last post was masking everything off. The painting, as everyone knows, was a lot of hurry up and wait between coats. Without the wait time included, I had about 10 hours worth of work done. By my normal standards, that is not much over a weeks time. Plus given the fact that it has been a month since my last post, I really feel that progress has slowed down tremendously.

 

But enough of my rambling, I am seriously thinking of using the reddish-brown color that I used for the hull to trim the cutaway in. It's a nice muted color and brings the color up from the bottom to a more focused on spot without being too distracting. I'll give it a shot and see how it looks. Nice thing about paint, if you don't like the color you can always change it.

 

 

 

On 7/20/2021 at 4:53 PM, Keith Black said:

 I'd be more inclined to go with white or natural wood instead of red. She looks great the way she sits. 

Keith,

 

Thank you Keith. I had pondered that as well, but since I was leaving the framing in its natural color, I wanted to show some separation between the two. Like I told Bob above, I'm going to give the reddish-brown color a try and see how it comes out.

 

 

On 7/20/2021 at 8:24 PM, BANYAN said:

Hi Brian; wow! looks great.  If it is only the edges of the planking in the cutaway area, I say go for it.  As you say, it will highlight the area and differentiate between the planking and framing (which look in natural timber).

Pat,

 

Thank you for the input. These great comments are always welcome. I think this is going to be one of my next steps to see how the reddish-brown looks  trimming the cutaway out. I'll be sure to post photos of the look, even if I do change my mind and go with a different color.

 

-Brian

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On 7/20/2021 at 4:49 PM, Keith Black said:

Brian, why not just go with the standard rigging and let the viewers imagination make the necessary connections as to what the cannon would have looked like when bringing aboard stores and munitions? 

Keith, 

 

I think you hit the nail on the head with this one. Hadn't really thought about letting the viewers imagination do the work.

 

One option that I had considered was taking one of the cannons in the cutaway section and turning it sideways to show the access, but all I could think of was people asking why it was mounted that way then having to explain. I still may do this, but you are right, I may just go with a standard rig and leave it at that.

 

-Brian

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On 7/20/2021 at 8:25 PM, Cathead said:

Wow, that looks great. You're definitely right about the paint bringing out the realistic look. Nice job on the texturing. I like the idea of a dark/rusty maroon, something that sets off the edge a little but doesn't highlight it.

 

I found a detailed painting of the Cairo's interior on another modeling forum in a log for the BlueJacket kit. Not going to directly post it here as I'm not sure about copyright issues (not even sure if it's from the kit or some other source), but here's a link. It's a bit grainy, but appears to show gun rigging that looks fairly standard for naval cannons. If it is from the kit, I wonder if you could source a good copy directly from BlueJacket? If nothing else, I bet they'd be willing to discuss their own research used to develop that kit and maybe help you find new information?

Eric,

 

Thank you for the kind comments. I have actually been using that drawing in your link for a while now. If I remember correctly they have the same drawing at the Cairo Museum and this is where I got the template for building my crew quarters from. There is no documentation or photos of the actual crew bunks available but the HSR drawings show the toe-board outlines on them and this picture has the full structure, so with those two references, that Is what I based my build on. Now as to it's historical accuracy, that is an unknown, so once again I took my builders liberties and built it the way I wanted.

 

As for the cannon rig in the drawing, it does look to be a standard Naval rig so in keeping with that theme, I am most likely going to rig them that way and as Keith suggested, let the viewer make the connection on how they were maneuvered out of the way during resupply.

 

-Brian

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Hello everyone,

 

Looking for an opinion here. I painted up the cutaway edge with the reddish-brown I used for the hull. I’m liking the color and think it provides a nice separation from the black paint and the natural wood color of the frames. I just thought I’d throw this out there to see what everyone else’s thought. 
 

1B1726FE-122F-44E2-B88C-AAD7E7564A7D.thumb.jpeg.7e32c7c6b66e80c0906b0317fd8bd24a.jpeg
 

 

 

B195DFFB-41FF-475C-891C-C6AF672CDB3C.thumb.jpeg.3581c6f3f025cf55863216fb777b085a.jpeg

 

Please feel free to chime in, I always welcome constructive criticism. 

 

-Brian

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Posted (edited)

Brian, I was originally unsure but seeing it done I like it a lot.  As Mark requested, more photos if possible, please.

 

 You need this for your Cairo collection.

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/154046974912?hash=item23ddea4bc0:g:kwsAAOSwuhZeY~OY

 

 

Edited by Keith Black
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15 hours ago, mtaylor said:

I like it also.  Usually, cut outs I've seen are rather irregular but with yours I think the paint sets it off so a viewer won't think it's part of the hull.  Can you post a  photo from side?

Mark,

 

As requested, here are a few from Port and Starboard sides. I assumed you were wanting a clearer or overall picture of the cutaway, but I took pictures of both sides just in case. 9404A27C-4B61-463B-9A2B-36F38BCCA137.thumb.jpeg.2c15e3e2d1483c49cfe9e6e5d835f8ad.jpeg

 

D356B037-846A-4922-8BC0-F29C54A7A25E.thumb.jpeg.2deb9c564b854051d9ab20386e98f883.jpeg

 

A8866895-F00B-4376-8388-650209607F8C.thumb.jpeg.df6afe0d93adbfb1c3332d3eab841200.jpeg

 

51745160-BB33-44F8-925F-C205F06F20E8.thumb.jpeg.1128aa34707a1f523dd438fcca34bbd6.jpeg

 

I very much appreciate the input. 
 

-Brian

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15 hours ago, Keith Black said:

Brian, I was originally unsure but seeing it done I like it a lot.  As Mark requested, more photos if possible, please.

 

 You need this for your Cairo collection.

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/154046974912?hash=item23ddea4bc0:g:kwsAAOSwuhZeY~OY

 

 

Keith, 

 

Now there is a tempting purchase. I could incorporate Selfridge’s signature into the display somehow when I’m done. What a conversation piece that would make. Thanks for the link. 
 

-Brian

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1 hour ago, mbp521 said:

Now there is a tempting purchase. I could incorporate Selfridge’s signature into the display somehow when I’m done. What a conversation piece that would make. Thanks for the link. 

 

 Brian, I think it'd be a great piece of history to add and is a lot cheaper that the following. Even though the first link isn't signed "Jr" both are clearly the same hand.

 

https://www.ebay.com/itm/373256469929?hash=item56e7d1bda9:g:XtAAAOSwXS5fe4PX

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