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Sovereign of the Seas 1637 by md1400cs- Sergal -1:78 (to be hopefully bashed)

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Hi Mates.

I have wanted to build this kit for a long time, I will also attempt to super detail this project beyond the “out of the box” kit – as excellent as it is. I have “bashed" my two last builds – enjoy the challenges of added detailing -- I have the McKay book that is filled with many line drawings and images; it will be an excellent guide. Along with incorporating great ideas seen in other build logs of this ship here at MSW.


I recently acquired a 1980s “new in box” kit from a member who had one available. He contacted me after I had made a request for one here at MSW.


That specific vintage kit was of interest to me because the 650+ included decorative bits were all cast in solid bronze (that number includes cannons). The current kit is supplied with 650+ white metal bits that have been electroplated, and apparently, from what I’ve been told, may result in some lost of casting details??  (TBD) – many other advantages are certainly in the current kit’s box as well, and not part of the 1980s box contents.


Given that this ship’s beauty, for-all-intent-and-purposes, was because of its 600+ ornamentations I got intrigued with the idea of solid bronze castings; luckily found one (Big thanks Jay L)

That said, instructions were really non-existent, included lumber still looked very good, other included kit’s amenities were, well from three decades ago. Bronze sculptures were, for me, the prize….as well as the 1:1 plan sheets (nice) only in Italian.


Jay's kit did not have a single super tiny missing bronze ornament – all were mixed up in 15 or so zip lock baggies – took hours to go through them all –haha. all other parts were 100% there as well.


Moving forward two weeks – a large heavy UPS box arrived at my door hmm? – Turns out that I was gifted, for Father’s Day, with the current Sergal #787. So best of both kits will be blended into this single project. My family did not know that I had already purchased a much earlier edition. The current kit certainly has its many advantages, but the earlier kit shines in many ways as well, many of which will become part of this project.


I will balance this log with some, as needed, comparisons between the old and new kit versions – No criticisms of either just occasional comparisons. That said, this log will focus on the build as it goes forward. I am lucky to have the best of both available for this project.


PS: I have listed this log as a 1637 ship – I know that she was around for many decades after, and that her stern ornamentation (provided in both kits) is more reflective of a much later example. But for builders 1637 is the “agreed to” year.


First log entry with some notes. – will also (thankfully for you) keep the writing to a minimum going forward.

Thanks for looking in, and if you are interested Welcome to the shipyard.






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Hi mates,

Thanks for your interest in following along - very much appreciated. And thank as well for dropping by - 


PS: Ryland big indeed!!.  1:1 sheet from vintage kit - next to Corel 1/75 Wasa 


No long text images include notes. (need to make adjustments to my signature)




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OC: to be determined – Are you asking about the round tuck at stern controversy?

Marc: thanks indeed – big welcome aboard

Eilelwen: thanks as well!


Moving forward – adding dummy carriages in upper and lower gun decks (48). Needed to do this for upper gun deck first before installing the lower gun deck templates – this allows for room to work from under. That done; Now, I can install the two lower gun deck templates, pre-drill the cannon holes then add carriages as was done above.

Thanks for dropping by, comments, and thanks so much for your interest in following along this new log.







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  • 2 weeks later...

First I want to share an easy “for me” mistake. For any of you planning on this kit – well here was the error. I was not paying much attention when placing the number 4 & 5 hull frames over the current kit provided outline sheet. Both looked identical and just flopped them into place. Well it turns out that #5 is 2.5mm on each side larger than #4 – makes sense Now!   did not even see/notice that!


When I hammered all of them into their slots, but I reversed 4 & 5. Now wanting to install the lower gundeck templates – a big “unnatural” curve caused issues. Images included below. So mates be more cautious than me.


Installed starboard lower gun deck. Added trim pieces as well. Almost finished the port side as – next will need to drill dummy cannon holes and add the dummy carriages as well.


Thanks for you kind visits…..




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Thanks - welcome aboard as well appreciated - Yes, those gunport frames have been a bit of a chore. I've had other issues as well (lot's can go wrong indeed) - no point in wasting members time with my frustrations - But almost done with these.


Later on - way later - I think that I also want to explore offsetting the bowsprit mast, as it should be, given how far forward the foremast is set. I took some time away from the hull - and put together a bowsprit deck section (based on a centered mast (per the kit) - will need to revisit that partial work as well, and figuring out how to securely place the mast. Should have done that before installing the gun deck bits -





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What I mean is the bulkhead on the decks between each deck, on a couple of pics on the net I have seen this shown as flat across the front  from port to starboard as apposed to the rounded  profiles where the canons point out facing forwards on the decks.


This is one of the pics on the net showing flat bulkheads.



hms sovereign of the seas 02.jpg

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Now totally understand your previous questions – sorry for not correctly responding. Nice painting BTW thanks for posting . So mentally still working the bulkhead details out, and given that, now, I also want to offset the mast – hmmm?


I very much like the kit (only in current version) provided upper curved railings. Thought of working with those adding some details and leaving the curved edges to the bulkhead to match the rail – just because I like the curved look. That said - the flat bulkhead is certainly the correct one. McKay’s images also reflect a full flat surface. Also both kits include the railing braces - so could just use those from the old kit and leave the bulkhead flat - as it should probably be. It would certainly be easier, and I could also scratch build a flat bulkhead adding extra details as well. I will include all of the old kit provided solid bronze bits....





Here are examples of both looks;


Stunning work from Y. Shionoya  from a Sergal kit superbly bashed.




from modelships.de --- from the Sergal kit as well




And this brilliant scratch built example - bulkhead is beyond perfect - well the entire work!!!




Thanks for your interest and posts





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OC. Have decided to do flat bulkhead - thanks for several - posts regarding this part of the build  :imNotWorthy:  flat was certainly how she was built.




Trying to absorb( so many) details from the McKay book I found this (images 1 & 2).


Seen, of course, before, but thought where could I find miniature Roman numerals that might just work, and add details to this project?

Went to “Google University” (to think that any question this on planet IS answered from a search at Google) and that search brought these up. Could just be perfect – 

So sharing a great -IMO- find other members whom might be interested.


Link below images,










As always thank for the "likes" 

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Modifications are looking good. This has been a detail that has always bothered me on previous builds as most 17th century ships had this mast offset yet I don't know of any kits that are designed that way. Modifying for it always became one of those decisions that I chose to forego and always regretted it.

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Frank, E.J.,


Thanks for dropping by and your comments.


E.J., You are right I don’t know of a single kit that correctly offsets the bowsprit masts for certain ships. I was also not going to offset it either then – wanted to give it a try – let’s see how it works out later. I also need to completely redesign the beakhead – not satisfied with this first effort.


Frank; My understanding is that the offset is required because the foremast is so far forward that there would not be enough room and leverage to securely anchor the mast in place into the foremast. Note the images from the Vasa as compared with the Mckay image of the SoS - (foremast placements)

And no the mast needs to re-center for the spritsail yard – or so I understand?


PS: Don’t know why some foremasts were placed so far forward. Maybe a much more knowledgeable member could post some thoughts? (balance)?





 this is a model by H. Culver from the US Navy Museum in Annapolis, Maryland. mast recenters....



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It was something I would have regretted not trying. Already wishing that I had overlaid the gun deck templates with pearwood - so "had to" at least try the offset. Thanks for following along. Welcome aboard.

PS1: not too impressed with kit provided walnut dowels, may glue together 4 oak strips + a bit of filler and make that mast - hmmmm?? sorta how they were done way back when.

PS2: Your Cutty is a beauty, enjoying your work as well !!



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Minor update – did some work for the stern cannon doors.

Needed to be sure that the required openings were not to high up. Looking at an image from old kit helped, along with positioning some decorative bits.




Needed to also cut out two spaces because gun door frames and dummy carriages would not fit.




Added a back filler and painted area black. Carriages will now also fit. Will drill the four gun holes after installation.




Put together the gun frame facings. Now set aside – now back to first hull planking.





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  • 3 weeks later...

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