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Making frame drawings and its adoption to laser cutting

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Posted (edited)

Kiyoo I am not quite sure of the way you can make it exclusive to members of MSW. If I were you I would start with 2 people that may be able to steer you. Kurt Van Dahm (current chairman of The Nautical Research Guild) and Chuck Passaro of Syren Ship Model Company who has structured something similar to your needs in conjunction with the Guild.


One win/win just came to mind. If you were not interested in some monetary retun for yourself. What do you think of a way that would benefit MSW ( a contribution a member would make) that allows a download of your tutorial? Just an idea!


Edited by Thistle17
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7. Closing

By verifying the effectiveness of this new method with the above-mentioned way and I could produce the final set of design drawings and laser-cutting drawings after several trials.

The model design utilized the power of the software, I could add many structural parts drawings other than frame parts. In addition to further reducing the cumbersome work of conventional drawing creation, laser cutting in this method also enabled reduction of material costs and significant reduction of trimming and fairing time.


 In order to share this effective technique with many people, especially beginner builders who want to challenge scratch builds, I am preparing a step-by-step procedure manual " Preparation of design drawings and the new part fabrication way in structural models ". It consists of nearly 180 pages of text, over 130 picture files, and a number of design sample files.

 This also includes design data for GRANADO designed as a prototype and data for laser cutting.

 If you bookmaking the manual part like below by yourself, I am sure it will help your learning effectively.




 When you are going to apply this method, it may seem to you that investing in software is costly. All of the software I have actually raised here is a well-known subscription software and they are relatively higher price. Certainly, an initial investment in case it is done by an individual may become nearly equivalent to a power tool to buy. However, the design and fabrication benefits that this method provides are immeasurable, including the reduction of creation time. Moreover, once these data have been made, a lot of people can share them like I am doing now. Thus the total cost per person can be comprehensively reduced.

 I have designed more than ten models frame data ever by using old version of this method and so far, it is used by many people in Japan. Creating the beautiful hull curved surfaces and the part drawings that make them up is just as fun as building a model.


In the last, I can say that by mastering this method,

You can design your own ship models and prepare the necessary drawings with the many flexibility.

You can accurately cut the necessary parts by yourself within a noticeably short time!

These are a lot of time saving at the preparation period and finally you can concentrate to your scratch model building!


 I am now going to store the procedure manual files on the cloud storage etc. so that it can be shared with the MSW member who want to learn the procedure and/or use this method. It is not a commercial purpose.

 Please send PM to me for the proposal. Then I give the key to download them. I hope this action will not be violate the MSW rules.

 As I am refreshing the sentences of the manual now, please allow that it may take a while to upload them.


 Thank you for reading through the introduction of my method and I hope that this method will enable many people to challenge scratch building.


Kiyoo Iizawa

A member of Yokohama Sailing ship Modelers Club (YSMC) in Yokohama, Japan




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Because I am not a professional and my established method is like a one of the tips. Just using the longer documents to explain it.

I like this hobby very much and if my contents seem something new, I just wished to share with those who are oriented the same hobby. Evaluation is up to you.

Many thanks for the compliment.




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Now, the procedure manual is ready to download.

I have updated (as my understanding) and uploaded it to my cloud storage.

When you want to get this manual, please send PM to me so that I can reach you and give download key to you. It is free download now.

Many PDF and JPG files in the manual help you to look through the contents even if you do not have the specific software.


Kiyoo Iizawa


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Yesterday night I found your post about your method of drawing and laser cutting frames by mere chance. I was fascinated, because I have some experience in drawing with Adobe Illustrator, but not with working in 3D.

Until now, I used Illustrator for tracing the lines of frames in plans that I bought, just to make bulkheads and keels. Now I traced all the frames of "La Belle 1684" in plans of Jean Boudriot (published by Ancre) - this time, instead of laser cutting, I had the opportunity to cut them out using a CNC milling machine for a small hull model in 1/64 (as you know, you can easily export a drawing from Illustrator in dxf format, but this file has then to be worked on before feeding it to the machine).

Tracing by hand has its limits (even with the clever support using bezier curves), the problems begin with the plan itself (distortions, errors), followed of course by limits of my own. Creating a correct hull in 3D helps making sure that all the parts fit in. It seems that Shade3D and Illustrator are capable of working hand in hand.

As always - the better the source, the better the outcome. By tweaking and sanding, my frames seem tho fit, but not with the precision one could wish for. That's why I will read your manual with utmost care (and try it out with my newly arrived copy of Ancre's "La Volage").

A admire your generosity, and thank you with all my heart.



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Thank you everyone, for valuable comments.

Making the fabrication drawings is hard barrier to scratch builder and it is very time consuming matter.

One of the reasons I have summarized this method was to reproduce the free curved shape of the ship’s parts accurately, correcting and adding the information of reference drawings.

This is especially useful for the free curved shape like frame and the software which have Bezier curve feature are particularly useful for that purpose. Combination of Shade and Illustrator is best for this purpose so far.

Please try to take a look the manual even you only want to see how they are doing.




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  • 3 weeks later...

Thank you everyone,

I have received many requests about the data of the procedure manual.


Today, in honor of Shade, I would like to introduce you to Shade's true function: 3D graphics.

Unlike most 3D graphics software, Shade can generate elegantly curved surfaces with only a few lines of drawing.

One day, in addition to general Shade characteristics, a Shade enthusiast has created a rope drawing add-in for me. This allows to draw not just a straight rope shapes, but any kind of rope crawl.

The first image shows the curve that the rope naturally forms, drawn with Bezier curves, and then the rope was drawn three dimensionally along that line.

The next two images are of a virtual ship based on the Caroline kit that I was working on at the time (20 years ago, very poorly especially for the textures).

But while I was enjoying these graphics, I discovered the method of getting curves for individual frame shapes presented here.

Since then, for me, Shade has been used almost exclusively for making the frame curves, and my graphics skills have not improved at all. However thanks to this, Shade has made a great contribution to original sailing ship modeling.





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Posted (edited)

The learning curve on Deflt Ship seems pretty steep.
It can do amazing things, but . . .
The tutorials presented on this forum help a lot, but it is still a very narrow application.

I use an inexpensive general purpose CAD program - Design CAD 3D.
And have used it for over 40 years now - since the DOS days.
Good stuff Maynard.

I do the fairing "by hand", same way it's done on the lofting room floor.
But accuracy can be much better than the old standard 1/8 inch.

An advantage is that the hull can be sliced up any way you want to make patterns for frames, stringers, diagonals, etc.

Just a standard drafting package with 3D modeling.

Catalina 27









Triton 30



Edited by cavelamb
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Posted (edited)

Some modeling content  :)

Making half-hulls.
Kinda backwards, working from a finished design to a half-hull.
In the old days this was the way hulls were designed.
Peg the layers (lifts) together and carve the hull.
Then take the hull back apart and trace the waterlines.




Edited by cavelamb
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  • 5 months later...

It's been a while, everyone.

I have introduced here my original drafting method, but I myself did not verify the authenticity of the design yet except for a partial cross-section model. The full model requires more than four times as many parts to be assembled as the cross section, and if there are any mistakes in this method, I cannot recommend it to you.

To validate this method, I completed the design of the full model in parallel with the introduction of the method, and all of its parts were laser cut, and its assembly was started. The model is GRANADO 1/64 scale.

The results were more successful than I had expected, and the model was completed with more than seven hundred kinds and over 1500 parts. All were assembled exactly in place with only the laser burn-mark to be removed.

Shade also can create 3D printed data, and by utilizing this, GRANADO's mortar, cannon, and swivel gun are also made in accurate scale and assembled.

I think if this method spreads, even structural models will be able to be shared as an assembled set, like a bulkhead kit.

I would appreciate it if anyone who has obtained a manual can let me know the impressions of this method by even PM.



Kiyoo Iizawa






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  • 2 weeks later...

I have good news for you all.

Those of you who have gotten my procedure manual may want to try to build Granado with the attached data.

I obtained the wooden sheets from Vanguard Models through a distributor in Japan, and when I approached Vanguard Models about the possibility of selling the sheets to the individuals, they graciously agreed to sell them. Of course, their business comes first, but if you are interested in obtaining the specified wooden sheets, please contact them directly.

The sheets are 0.8mm and 6 types from 1 to 6mm thick, 100x500mm size pear wood sheet.

If you can get them, you can use the cut pattern as I laid it out.

Please try it.




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