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HMS Cheerful by Bill Brown - FINISHED - 1:48 - Syren Ship Model Company

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Time to make the pumps and winch.   Once again I used Syren's mini kit for the pumps.




For the galley stack, I used a thin piece of veneer I had, about 30 mil thick to form the side walls. After assembly the stack was painted flat black and then some rust weathering powder applied to simulate a metal structure.




The Winch was pretty straight forward.   The instructions do a nice job in describing how best to achieve it.







The ships rudder.     Here again, Syren's plans and instructions do a great job in describing how to build Cheerful's rudder.   I used Syren's mini kit for the gudgeons and pintels which consists of very precise laser cut parts.    These worked extremely well.




Some black painters tape cut in strips simulated some of the iron bands on the top part of the rudder.



One of the last major deck structures prior to stepping the mast is the bowsprit step.  Syren has yet another mini kit which I took advantage of in my build.  The precision laser cut parts in the mini kit make its creation pretty straight forward.   It gets painted red prior to stepping the bowsprit.





At this stage, all the major deck structures are complete and the ship is ready to embark on the next major building phase, the mast, bowsprit, gaffs and spars.    So until next time, be well, safe and Happy Modeling!





In hindsight:  I would say the biggest issue I encountered during this build phase is not really shown in any of the pictures above and in fact may be more appropriate for my next installment, but I had difficulty stepping the bowsprit.    I wanted to have the bowsprit hole provide as tight a fit to the bowsprit as possible.    This was fine but my hole was at a slightly different angle then what the plans required.    The result was that when the bowsprit was installed it did not want to sit flush against the bottom of the bowsprit step top cross piece.   I had to do a bit of adjusting before I was satisfied with how it installed.     Doing it again, a few dry fits of the hole and bowsprit is warranted and greater care to make sure the hole drill angle is correct.    I noticed the issue late in the game and it became tougher to fix.   Other than that, the mini kits really make the deck structures go smoothly for the novice.   Well done Syren!



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  • 2 weeks later...




The bowsprit, boom, and mast.      Following the practicum, I used the 7-10-7 rule to make all the spars, boom, and mast.    With a lot of existing kits, you typically get supplied a round dowel for your spars and masts.    In this case I am starting from square stock which has several advantages imho.   Most spars and masts have a section that needs to remain square.   I find by using the 7-10-7 method, its a lot easier to make a round spar from square stock than and making a square section starting from round stock.    In addition, most spars and masts require holes or slots to be drilled through them.   Again I find this much easier to do starting with square stock.   


In the photo above, the bowsprit is installed.    Angles are important here.


Below the mast has been stepped.    





Once the mast has been stepped, my attention turned towards the boom and gaff.    These are made in the same manner as the bowsprit and mast by using the 7-10-7 rule.    This is the first time I used this method and found it to be very straight forward.    Once my lines were drawn on the square stock,  I used a sharp xacto knife to create the octagon shape of the spar.   All the tapers are accounted for with the lines drawn.      Its important to leave an amount of extra stock at the end such that it can be chocked into a hand drill.   


Don't get me wrong,  I love power tools, but I found that a lathe is not really needed with this method.     All you need is a sharp pencil, a good vernier caliper, a long straight edge, a sharp knife, some different grits of sandpaper, and a hand held drill.





Once the boom, mast, and bowsprit are installed, this model suddenly got a lot bigger!   


Finally I installed the top mast which made it bigger yet. :  )




Thats all for this installment.   Next time the rigging begins!    I was never a fan of rigging but this ship's rig is pretty straight forward and the instructions make a tough task very doable.   


In hindsight:    I must have read Chuck's practicum at least 5 times where he explicitly says, whatever you do don't forget the mast hoops before you install the boom rest and trestletrees.


Sure enough, I got carried away and did just that!     I was so upset at myself.    Oh well, I removed the boom rest, installed the mast hoops, reinstalled the rest and moved on.   In the end, it was no big deal, just embarrassing.    


So I will be getting out my scissors, rigging tools, and using my stock of excellent Syren blocks and line next time.    Until then be well, stay safe, and Happy Modeling!




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  • 3 weeks later...

The rigging process begins.    With the boom and gaff made using the 7-10-7 rule, its as good a time as any to rig them.   Below are some of the running rigging installed:




I use clamps as weights sometimes to provide the necessary tension on the lines while rigging.   

Syren's plans and practicum do an excellent job describing what block type and size as well as what line size and color is needed for any particular line.   


In the next photo below you can see some of the standing rigging run.   




The lanyards and ratlines are next.   A tedious job but rewarding when you finally complete it.




In the above photo you can also see the sling for the lower yard in place.


Focusing on the yards, the toe ropes need to be installed.    I used a jig that I got the idea from a fellow club member, TomShipModel.     Its simple enough to make and very versatile as the vertical supports are  adjustable in the horizontal direction.    Simple rubber bands are used to hold the spar in place.  Thank you Tom!




Next up will be to hang both yards and complete the rigging.    


In hindsight:   Chuck suggests this in the practicum and I can't reinforce it enough, make sure to leave your belayed lines unglued as to allow for adjustments as you continue through the rigging process.   This is extremely important as you will need to adjust them.   Tightening one line can and will loosen another. 


Until next time be well and happy modeling.    




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  • 1 month later...

The rigging process continues:



In the picture above, the standing rigging is complete as is most of the running rigging.     I am using small clothes pins as weights for the end of some of the lines.   You can also see both yards hung in place with their running rigging mostly in place.   Its a bit of a trial and error process to get the right tension on all the braces and lifts.   Take your time.


Next up with be the ground tackle and raising the flag.     We are getting very close to the finish line on this project.   Its been a very enjoyable ride so far.      Until next time, be well!



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  • 1 month later...

Hello folks,  I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays.   Its been awhile since my last installment.   Today's focus is on the ground tackle and making the flag which upon completion essentially completes the entire build project.  


Cheerful has your traditional anchor design from the period.   Syren provides a very nice laser cut mini kit to make the anchors which I took full advantage of in my build.  In the first photo you can see one of the two assembled anchors:


Black artist tape is used to simulate the iron banding.  I used some rust powder to show some affects of salt and general weathering of the anchor.


Here is another view:






In the photo below, the anchors are positioned on the cap-rail ready to be secured with line.   




For the flag, the instructions provide a scale graphic that can be printed out on any ink jet printer.    Chuck suggests gluing a piece of tissue paper, similar to what you may have used to wrap all those great gifts you gave out this year ;  ) to a regular 8 1/2"x11" paper for printing.      Once printed you can use some clear varnish spray liberally to help get the ink visible on both sides of the tissue paper.      You can then cut out the printed flat and use a cylindrical object, (paint brush handle) to help form the curls and waves of the flag.    The below picture shows the flag raised:





Final thoughts.    The HMS Cheerful is designed with the beginning scratch builder in mind.   This is a single plank on bulkhead hull using quality wood, with a relatively straight forward rigging and a wealth of precision mini kits available as options for the builder.    I personally took advantage of all the mini kits available but you certainly don't have to depending on your skill level.   


There were two main things that made this build a success for me and that was:


1).    A very well written thought out practicum by Chuck Passaro.    His writing is understandable by the novice with sufficient detail to get it right.    He not only tells you "what" to do but also in a lot of cases  "how" to do it and even more importantly "when" to do it, which for someone like me was essential.    You just don't see this with a lot of instructions.


2).   Even with those excellent instructions you will have questions.   For me, I had the support of the kit designer and my ship model club which I have said in the past is your most important tool in your shop hands down.  I can't thank those folks enough.


In the end I am very pleased with the outcome.    I learned a lot and definitely upped my game.    I still have huge areas for improvement.   My block stropping is horrendous, I still over glue, and my planking is, well lets say there is room for a lot of improvement but thats what this is all about isn't it?  This project has given me the confidence to take on more challenging subjects in the future.   There are no modeling awards in my future but there is satisfaction that you have completed a complex project and there is a sense of pride in doing so.    


I have already started a new project, completely scratch this time, and completely different from the Cheerful.   Stay tuned as I start a new build log on this one very soon.   Until then, here is to a better 2021!

It has to be right?    Be well





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