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I Received an Admiral's Allowance, How to Spend it?


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Hey guys,

 

So the wife just bought a $900 sewing machine which means I have my own $900 to spend on my hobby.  I am trying to decide on what to buy.  I am thinking the best way to go is a few tools but am not sure as to what I will get the most use out of.  Do you guys have any suggestions?  So far I have thought about a combination of a few of the following:

 

Byrnes table saw

Byrnes disc sander

really any Byrnes tool

A cheaper disc sander than the Byrnes one

Dewalt 778 Scroll Saw

Rattlesnake kit from model expo(currently $136 with paints I think)

Proportional dividers( micro mark has what seems to be a nice one)

Maybe a drill press to replace my dremel workstation

A lathe(probably only a wood turning one so that I am getting more than just one tool like I would probably only get if I went with a metal turning lathe)

 

Can you think of anything else that may be worth looking into?  Which items would you buy with $900?  I am open to suggestions and would really like to hear some.

 

Also something to note, I just recently aquired an iwata airbrush but I dont really have any power tool other than a dremel and some accessories.

 

Thanks guys!

Edited by FlounderFillet5
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Max,

 

Put the checkbook down.  Make a cup/glass of your favorite beverage and sit back.  Now ask yourself this:  Where do I want go with this hobby?   If it's kits then power tools are a waste of money.  If it's scratch building, then kits are a waste of money. 

 

Then ask yourself:  Where am I in the shipbuilding learning curve? If you're doing more and more scratch work and bashing, what tools will most useful for that? 

 

It's a growth process, I think.  When you're ready for the big power tool, you'll know it and no one will convince you otherwise.  :)  if you're more kit oriented, go for the kit and put the money away until you need that "next thing".. be it tools, kits, or wood.

 

Now I could tell you exactly what I'd buy, but it may not be what you'd want or need.   Kinda' evil, aren't I? ;)

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Mark,

 

I get what you are saying, and it makes sense.  I think I am going to do at least a few more kits before I get into scratch building but I feel like that is where I am headed.  I want to get some more experience working with wood before attempting anything scratch.  I will likely do a bit of kit bashing with my future kits as well but I don't know what will be of the most use for me.  So far on my Phantom build, I have planked the deck and am doing many things like deck houses and whatnot to have more detail than Chuck's practicum that I am using.  A disc sander probably would have made the deck planking much easier and more precise but I did what I could with the tools at my disposal.  Also, I built a table saw for my Dremel tool in order to cut a new, and much closer to scale, grating for the cockpit which worked well but I figured an actual table saw would have been MUCH more precise.  I have also used the saw for cutting strips of boxwood for the bulwark stanchions, ect.  Eventually I would love to be able to buy roughly sawed wood or even just a limb of a particular type of wood and be able to mill it to what I need but that will require a band saw and thickness sander and those will come later.  The other tool I was thinking about was a lathe because every project will use it for at least the masts, if not other items on the ship and I think it would be cool to make really detailed items like the captain's wheel and whatnot.  I am going to edit the opening post to add a lathe to my list.

 

By the way, it is a really tough thing to put the checkbook away!  I won't be buying these things until next month anyway but I am just trying to get an idea of what to buy.

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Max,

 

I already have a great set of tools including a table top saw, drill press, sander and thickness sander, these have been added over the past ten years.  I believe my best purchase up to this point is a table top planer I purchased last weekend.  I bought the Dewalt DW 735 13" thickness planer, it's a super planer for the price.  Just my 2 cents worth!

 

Cheers,

Tim 

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I also agree with Crackers, and Anthony, carry on with the model you are working on and when you get stuck because the tool you need is not in the family go and get it, be it a file or a jewelers saw a pair of fine needle-nosed pliers, whatever it might be.

 

It is a better way in my humble opinion, than just going spending.

 

Michael

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All the tools under the sun won't necessarily make you a better modelmaker, but buying a few that you really need might just help.

 

I'd agree with Anthony and Michael, save your money until you really feel as though you need a need a particular tool. That way you'll acquire only those really necessary, and which you'll use all the time, rather than ones you initially thought you needed – but which then get relegated to the back of the shelf or workshop to gather dust.

 

Oh, yes, Crackers has also given some sound advice – regarding the Admiral! ;)

 

 

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I don't have all those wonderful tool either........my work shop ia about as primative as it gets.  I like it that way.   I bought the admiral a sewing machine.......oh......she told me all the wonderful things she could do with it.  as of right now........I've used it more than her ;)

 

     The admiral love what I do with my ship modeling......I also do a lot {underline a lot} of bash work.  I know that if I finished my last build,  and had nothing new to work on........I would have a kit in front of me in no time!   that's just the way we roll.......of course,  it would start because she would see me looking at a plastic kit....she doesn't want me doing plastic any more,  and will do anything to keep me from them.   {I think it's cute and very funny}

 

"oh dear.......all I have left is this old Trumpeter kit....guess it will have to do."

"WHAT!!!!  I thought I could smell plastic........here....take this Norske Love.....and go back in your hole!"

"OH!!   Thanks dear........your a peach!"

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Check ebay for the proportional dividers, it might save some of your budget.

 

I would keep the money handy and only buy the tools as they are needed unless you come across a deal you cant pass up.

 

BTW, don't forget to sign your wife into the crew as your sail maker with that $900 sewing machine!

 

Ken

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Good general advise about keeping the Admiral happy, mind you Max said she had just got a new sewing machne, so careful dont want to spoil her (that will get me in trouble).

Lots of good advise about reserving judgement on tools.

But of course if we only bought tools that we could justify on a use/cost basis then we would all have empty slips.

....Ooooh look a shiny thing, and what straight lines it cuts, gotta have one, 'yes darling of course I will get plenty of use from it'

And the end of the day it's also about what keeps you engaged.

 

Nick

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Buy as many of Jim's tools as you can! And Jim didn't tell me to say that. I have every one of Jim's tools and I couldn't be happier. I will tell you that I use the sander more than any other tool except for my clamps. I even use it when tapering planks. I just had an in personal visit with Dr. Per and I think I need to go buy another tool. :P

Edited by Floyd Kershner
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One of my favorite sayings is "A happy wife is a happy life" - and it's true!

 

I started buying tools before I had thought through what I really needed, and the level of accuracy needed at the scales we work at.  Consequently I wound up replacing a lower priced disk/belt sander with the Byrnes disk sander, and replacing the Luthier's Friend with the Byrnes thickness sander.  I could have saved some money if I had slowed down a little!  My son is happy though - he gets my rejected tools.

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My wife spends a lot more than any or yours and I rarely buy anything for my self. Christmas before last I thought hey, what's up with this, so I bought everything that Jim Byrnes makes along with a Sherline mill and lathe. To heck with "do I need it". My wife doesn't "need" what she buys. I have the Rattlesnake kit along with the Syren which I am building now. These are my first builds so I'm no expert. My suggestion would be to skip the Rattlesnake and upgrade to the Syren. I would also spend the extra money to replace everything above the waterline with boxwood & cherry and the deck with holly from HobbyMill. Of the Jim Byrnes machines I would say the order of importance would be: table saw, thickness sander, disk sander. Of course after buying all that I thought that I would to fly to London and take a train to Portsmouth for a couple of days to see the Victory while my wife and daughter went to Hawaii. Although for 40 years she would never go anywhere besides Hawaii, she said that she would go along for me. Well, it turned into London, Portsmouth, Paris, Orient Express train to Venice, Rome  and back to London. Darn! She still out spent me! Oh well. We had the best time of our lives. In fact we're going again in 6 weeks. Adding Chatham but skipping Venice and Rome. I created a monster.

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Hey guys, 

 

Thanks for all the responses!  The wife has already signed on to make me some sails, hopefully they will turn out really nice.  I am trying to find some material that will look good on my current build which is 1/96 scale.  She has also gotten a kick out of this thread, though Pompey2 is in the dog house!  :D

 

As for the tools, I think I might go ahead and pull the trigger on some Byrnes tools, specifically the table saw, disc sander, and drawplate come next month.  I might also go ahead and pick up the table top drill press from Rio Grande as that seems like it would be a helpful addition to my workshop and be a little more precise than the dremel workstation I currently have.  Still not set in stone but thats kinda what I am leaning towards.  I would love to get a lathe but maybe I will just build a hand drill lathe for the masts and spars and buy an actual lathe later on down the road.  Same with the thickness sander and bandsaw, those can wait until I decide to start scratch building.

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Hey guys,

 

So the wife just bought a $900 sewing machine which means I have my own $900 to spend on my hobby...

 

You could buy another sewing machine for yourself and learn how to make pretty dresses. smiley_loveshy.gif

 

OR you could type in CALDERCRAFT HMS VICTORY KIT at your favorite online model store and then your credit card # :cheers:

Edited by channell
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If the Admiral ain't happy, nobody's HAPPY!  After 50+ years of being married to the same woman this advice is from well earned experience:

 

  (1) If the Admiral ain't happy, nobody's happy, (2) Flowers work and if you add dinner at a new and good resteraunt, it works even better, and (3) Never-Ever refer to the reason for your new purchase as "because she bought a new .......".

Edited by Elder Jim
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Buy as many of Jim's tools as you can! And Jim didn't tell me to say that. I have every one of Jim's tools and I couldn't be happier. I will tell you that I use the sander more than any other tool except for my clamps. I even use it when tapering planks. I just had an in personal visit with Dr. Per and I think I need to go buy another tool. :P

Ahmm, Floyd, you  more tools?

Seems like you have plenty.

Guess I have to turn around for another  therapy session.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Max,

 

But Byrnes drawplate is a definite. The quality is outstanding!

A gift to the Admiral, to show her your appreciation and love.

Save the money for a later purchase when needed of such.

Don't rush away to get something you may not need for the moment. But that's my two cents. :cheers:

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So here is where everything stands for now.  I ordered and just received the inexpensive drill press from Rio Grande, Thanks for that recommendation!  It is kinda a cheap chinese drill press but it seems to have little vibration or bit wobble so it will serve my purposes.  

 

I am building a DIY lathe with an $18 hand drill I picked up at Harbor Freight which will be used to shape masts and spars for this build as well as future builds until I can get a proper lathe for scratch building down the line... maybe it will be a christmas present from the admiral.  

 

I have needed a mini table saw more than a couple times during this build and am sure that requirement won't be going anywhere in future builds, especially once I move over to scratch.  It seems like there are so many uses for a table saw other than just ripping planks and whatnot, I have already made a scale grate for my current model as well as cut a new strip of wood for the bowsprit among other little things, and that was all with a DIY dremel table saw project I made.  It has served its purpose but a proper saw like the JimSaw would do a much better job and make it a much faster and less painful experience(Not actually painful, but emotionally painful at times... lol).

 

The draw plate is not something I have needed yet but I am sure I will use it in the future and it is so inexpensive to just add to an order of other tools.

 

The disc sander would have made my life soo much easier on this build and I am sure it will continue to prove useful in the future.  I am very excited for this tool.  

 

I also really want the thickness sander but that will wait until scratch building is closer and I can convince the admiral on that tool.

 

And about keeping the admiral happy, we are planning a vacation to Mexico for early next year which will give us both something to look forward to and keep us both happy in the months to come.

 

Again, thanks for all the recommendations!  

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I think your admiral's sewing machine would diminish the expenses while your hobby machines increase them...

Your those two operations seem to be only for yourself... Sewing is more cheaper than buying the confection and in the event, it seems you had decreased the admiral's expenses of which you are responsible, for expending money for your desires...

The money that you had spent for the sewing machine would somehow return to you pocket. You should also use that $900 for the admiral... :D

S o r r y ! . . .

 

Crackers is a wise man...

Edited by ashiponthehorizon
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Druxey hit the nail on the head. Scratch or kit.  If kits, far fewer tools are needed.  They are all desirable but less of a necessity.

 

If scratch, have you considered your library as well as your tool cabinet?   Steel, Lavery,  Lees and recent publications from Sea Watch books by members of this site that will help you in your endeavors.

 

Allan

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  • 2 weeks later...

Allan makes a very good point, how about a few books into the mix, always a great help to have reference materials, I highly recommend the TFFM set by David and Greg, there is soooo much info in those 4 books its amazing.

As for power tools, I would recommend buying what you actually need at the time and not having a lot of expensive paperweight sitting around not doing anything, however I can say that I love my Byrnes tools and my dewalt 788 scroll saw.

 

Ben

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