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HMS Bounty by Trond - Billing Boats - 1:50

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Hi All,


I'm staring a log to show my progress and to get feed back.


The model was bought approx. 25 years ago (getting to old for remembering details that far back) at a local bobby shop. I had some model experience before but only plastic, but it look cool and I had high expectations for doing the build in a ferally short time. But the reality came pretty fast. It turn out to be a hell of a lot bigger project that I thought. The instruction was very limited to say the least, only 11 pages with drawings and instruction (in 4 languages). It also turned out that several of the structure was bent. What I've should was return the model and get a beginner model.

Well that did not happen. I started building the hull and planking and got frustrated and set it aside for 25 years.

Know I'm 25 years older, gotten some more experience and more patience. And want to finish my ship and learn more about ship building.


So this is status so far.







And here you see one of my challenges, the frame is twisted. So I need to do some visual cheating but compansating on one side to make it look even.




Right now I'm waiting for some more planking to finish the hull.


I see from other logs that my drawing is quit different in many ways. So will do some more comparing to see if I can pick up some useful tips.


I order the Masting and Rigging the Clipper Ship and Ocean Carrier and The Armed Transport Bounty (used, they are to expensive new) to help me out with getting through this build. That was before I came across this forum, where there is a ton of information and experienced people.




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Posted (edited)

Just looking at your model to see how far you are on,Is that a solid hull or is the first layer of planking painted. The second layer of planking looks excellent,what sort is it? For the record my first and only other model was a Billings and I thought the fittings were excellent,although it was not what I would call a period ship like the Bounty. Good luck with your build and keep up the good work. Dave

Edited by DaveBaxt
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Thanks Dave,


The hull i planked, but with some balsam pieces changeout. When I started out with the model I had to remove some of the planking and the only alternative was to put some pieces of balsam and sand. The bottom part, below waterline is sanded and painted.


On the top I'm using mahogany or some other word, since mahogany is not a very positive word these days.


The problem I now see is that when putting on the extra planking there is a small distance to the below white part of the hull. I though of planking the bottom half of the hull, but then I need to sand down a lot and also the paint I use is thick and would hardly see any planking afterword.

So I think i will put some filler below the new planking and sand a smooth transition between the planking and the white painted hull.

I will take some picture to show it when I get there.

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Back from the cabin at the weekend and plank was in the post.

Planked the other side.





And yes, the planking is not the correct nicely pattern as it should. It will be done correctly with my next ship.

It will pass under first ship mistakes.

So the next step is to sand the hull and put some filler between the planking and painting, so that I get a smooth transition from bottom hull (painting) and planking.


I need treat the planking with something, but I'm not sure with what. So that I can get the nice color from the wood. Any suggestion anybody?

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The planking has been sanded up to 300 grid for a smooth. I will need to do some testing to see what I shall put on the planking. If it look bad, I'll sand it and paint it.


Also added some filler between the planking and bellow for a smooth transition.



And when it has tried of, I'll sand it down and paint it white. Also did some touch up on some forgotten spots on the hull.


I'm thinking of planking the rear wall with the windows for a better look.

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I've continued filling out holes and uneven edges and sanding.


Though I was doing a smart and easy solution by planking the hole rare part of the ship including the windows, but it turned out to be a stupid idea.

It takes a lot of time removing the planking over the windows. What I should have done was cut exact plank to each piece around the window. ☹️




The white stuff is from sanding and will be removed before treating the plank.


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Still filling and sanding to get the worst bumps away. I'm defiantly learning the hard way. I'm never going to do a "speedy gonsales" way forward as I did 25 years ago.

I hope this will be the last filling, than I can sand it and than paint the last layer of white on the hull.




I've been working on the detail at the back and as if there was enough errors done by my self, there is also errors made by Billingboats.




IT does not fit.




It is suppose to go on the outside. So I need start making new improved parts.







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Finished filling and sanding. Painted the hull for the last time (I think 🤨)

Made a hole for the ruder and started putting on window frames.




Also need to put on the wales, but I need to put then in water for bending. In the mean while I've been trying to straighten out some bent pieces. I have put them in water for many hours and then put them under weight to keep the straight, but they went back to their original form.


So I need to make some new pieces from a straight plate.



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Posted (edited)

Well it was time to start putting on the wales, which took some time to measure out where they where suppose to be. Had to measure out from the drawing. 





Half done, but wasn't sure how the rear wales should end, so waited to do that to last.


While I was waiting for the glue I tried the different varnish.

I have seen different ones hear on the forum, but different brand.. her where I live, so need to do some testing.





I see it is very difficult to differ between the samples, but 1 and 3 is with normal oil based varnish bout in hobby shop - Humbrol and 2 and 4 is a varnish used on boat with some brow/red in. 2 and 4 give a little extra "glow" to mahogany wood, so I will use that one.


Another challenge is to learn all the different names for rigging the ship, since the instruction is crap and no real instruction. So I use a lot of time reading my newly bought rigging books to learn rigging.🤔

I also bough a bunch of blocks to the ship from Syren, but delivery time to Norway is approx 20 days 😢.

Well, lot to do before that time anyway.


Edited by Trond
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Glued on the rest of the wales and painted part of it black. Got the wrong black, it was gloss insted of matt




The "white" line is the unpainted side of the wale. Because the wood  was so dry I must paint the rest of the planking with varnish before painting the rest of the wale black. If not I risk of the black paint being soaked onto the planking.



Her was a close call 

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Before I can do the last wale I want to finish the rare cabin with its outside decoration and side windows so that I can get the correct length of the wale.


Again I need to do some adjustment or rather actually I just made need part. It took a lot of thinking forth and back to understand how I was going to fit it on and make it look good. 



So I ended up make 4 pieces and glued 2 and 2 together. Then I sanded each piece to fit on the hull and glued.






Need to do some sanding before painting, but it looks ok.


It is a pretty step learning curve, but it is fun.

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Time to do the side windows.



This is the hole instruction, so it was time to make those braincells work again.


This is the supplied wood piece. Not good good at all.



So I copied the head and bottom piece and made them double. Then I carved out the profile and sanded.


I started with the right piece and cut out the top and bottom. Made window part, sanded and paint first layer.

Then I put on some filling and sanded again.


When I'm happy I will paint all gold before gluing onto the side of the hull.



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Finished sanded and painted. Tried putting on Gilding Foil Flakes, but had the wrong glue. I will try getting the right glue and try it out, since I think it will look more authentic, at least what I think after watching new build where they used gold leaf.20210406_224653.thumb.jpg.f80150b7e2eb81ae843c5ce4761591c3.jpg


I glued on the top wale and painted it black. There is a little gap in aft, but wouldn't be able to do that before I glue on the windows with decoration.




There are three small spots were the wood color of the plank has gone light.

I've tried different paint mixes, but they look worse than just leave them as is.


Anybody got any suggestion how to get that fixed?


The model is starting to look like a real ship and there is a ton of lesson learned along the route, but that is the fun of the hobby. 😉

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43 minutes ago, Trond said:

Anybody got any suggestion how to get that fixed?

 Trond, when I've that same situation come up I've mixed acrylic craft paints to blend in the spots. In your case I'd start with burnt umber and add a small bit of red. If it's too dark add a small bit of yellow. You'll have to play with the mixture till you make a satisfactory match. For me, it's a lot of fun trying to mix up a suitable match. 

 The ship is really looking nice, you're doing a great job. 

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Thanks Keith,

Now I need to find the name for it Norwegian or a local hobby shop that has a good selection of paint. Hopefully it is a known color and easy to get.

Would it be any problem painting acrylic on top of oil paint?

Do you always put varnish on top painted and unpainted surfaces on the ship? I see many put  glossy varnish on ships and for me that totally ruins my impression of the ship, so I wouldn't do that. Maybe a thin layer of mat varnish?


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Trond, burnt umber = dark brown. No, I wouldn't paint acrylic on top of oil paint, I'd stay with oil paint. To varnish or not to varnish is a personal preference. I varnish because it protects, a mat varnish is best. 

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A big day to day. I finally got my Bounty book today. It took a little over a month from ordering from US to get it to Norway 😒.



Well, now I have it and it has a lot of information which will be useful for my build.

The only problem is that there are some fault from Billingboats that I just need to accept. Either that or build a new Bounty 😆

NO, that will not happen, but I will use it to try to make the rest of the ship as authentic as possible. 


I need to do some reading and bring the book to work (since I have home office) for some copying that I can write notes on, make measurements over to 1:50 scale and in metric.


I also need to do some experiment with paint to get those light spots on the hull correct. Thanks Keith for your info on what umber paint is.



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That is a good book and I have been referring to it constantly.  Yes it does show up discrepancies with the various kits out there; my Caldercraft Bounty is no exception, all us lesser mortals can do is try and make our kits a little better by referring to sources like McKay and MSW of course! Maybe one day, perhaps, gain the skills to scratch build something! 🤣


Keep up the good work!

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Hi Trond,

Your build is looking great!

I have an electronic copy of the Armed Transport: Bounty. Been a huge help for me too.

I recently finished reading a book about the HMS Bounty. It's based on the logs, diaries and letters of Bligh and the crew. It's call Mutiny on the Bounty and was written about 3 years ago by Peter FitzSimmons. Might be of interest to you... I found it an excellent read!

I'll be keeping an eye on your progress. Keep up the great work!


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Thanks guys, I see that I will need to keep pushing my boundaries on my ship building skill if I'm going to try get it "close" to John McKay standard.


It is good that hear that there are other that has used the book and hopefully I can ask some questions from 😉. When giving  the book a first look it was a lot of info on mast, yards and rigging. And a little confusing from a first time builder.


 What is the best way of getting some large paper copies from the book, to have in my workshop for making notes on? 

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8 hours ago, Trond said:

 What is the best way of getting some large paper copies from the book, to have in my workshop for making notes on? 

Maybe take it to a print shop and have them blow up some of the shots?

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41 minutes ago, LyleK1 said:

Maybe take it to a print shop and have them blow up some of the shots?

I'll make a note of your suggestion, but I will first try to blow it up to A3 format on the company copy machine and see if that works.

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Found a serious mistake during my last build. Due to confusing drawings/instruction I didn't see that the top wale is to follow the outer front deck plank.mistake1.thumb.jpg.09c6c8fa0d009c79f922d14a6a692518.jpg

So then I first I have to figure out how high the outer plank is to be. Since there are some mismatch on instruction, drawing and part.

Nothing is glued, just laid out for showing the situation. The plank is also wrong dimension due to to small drawings, so I will have to make some new.



The part size is way of.




When measuring on drawing there is a mismatch with instruction, so I'm a LITTLE frustrated.


When I have put together the top plank, I will need to cut away the necessary length of the wale, scape of paint, glue on new wale and paint it.

I feel sometimes that i take 3 step forth and than 2 back. This was done before I got the Bounty book and I will defiantly use the book all the time from now onward. 


Learning: read everything at least twice and stop up and think if everything is correct before acting. 😉


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After cutting, scraping, sanding, gluing and painting I think I'm a little in forward since last time. It is way from perfect, but I'm happy.

I have also changed some of the painting color. I made the top wale gold same as décor in the aft. I know it is a little difference from what McKay has in his book, but I was looking at a lot of different color combination on different models on the web and though this was a somethin I liked and hopefully not to far off. And also there are many other part of the model that is not according to McKay.




I also received my blocks from Syren and they look way better than the one in the kit.



 I just have to decide on how far I want to take the detailing with different rope sizes and block sizes.


When I look at builders like Thomas J. Lauria and other good builders I want to take it far, but I need to take it down many steps and get my feet planted down to earth. This is my first build and they have been doing this a very long time. So I'll most likely go with 3 or 4 block sizes, but need to do some more reading.


Is there such as a "normal standard" for how many rope, blocks and Deadeye sizes one use on a1700-1800 model ship?

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 Trond, this is where research becomes invaluable. Google block sizes/types for 18th century sailing ships. You want your blocks to match the 1:50 scale. There are different sizes of rope for different applications. Once again, research.


 I don't know how many thousands of hours of research I have done for the Tennessee. I also search MSW looking for answers, a great source of information that we're lucky to have available. 

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Been a week with little progress on the model after my blunder with the wales. And it does not help with tons of stuff to do at work.


Well, last evening I went to my work office (got home office) and did some copying from my Bounty book. The kit is a combination of bad/missing instructions, wrong size on part or just missing parts. So i need to make a lot of the items on deck my self. I'll use the drawing from the book and calculate everything  over to mm and a scale of 1/50, and write everything over onto the drawing. It is a lot of work, but do it in steps.20210415_080333.thumb.jpg.5eeb51427dd2bb9bf592da9c83b20dd3.jpg


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