Jump to content

18th Century Longboat by catopower - FINISHED - Model Shipways - 1:48

Recommended Posts

I'd had a build log for my 18th Century English Longboat going on another site, but it's time to post it here with my other build logs. I started this kit back when the item first came out. I'd been working on some scratch projects and I thought it would make a good diversion to pull out and work on now and again. It's been "in progress" though for so long and far enough along now that I'm ready to put all my effort into finishing up this model.


I've had a great time with this kit and I'm pretty happy with how it has turned out. It's pretty rare for me to build a kit without changing things, but so far I've pretty good about not fooling around with changes and just building the model. It's not as nice as some of the fabulous work I see in some of the other build logs. But aside from skill issues, I like to blame any faults on my desire to keep this as a tinkering model to bring out now and again when I need a break from another project.


I'll begin here with a photo recap of the project. Again, this began around January of 2012 (I think that's when I got the kit – it's all kind of a blur now...). 













As you can see, I had a little trouble with the bending of the basswood at the bow, particularly dealing with the third plank up from the garboard. I also had enough trouble with the edge bending that the planks weren't all laying flat. So, I sanded to compensate. As a result, there's some REALLY THIN planking there. In a later photo, you might see the light shining through it.


However, I did manage not to sand all the way through and the planks look pretty even.





Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here are the photos from my second installment of the build, following up the planking with trimming the framing.





Now we jump ahead a little because I didn't take any photos of the process of painting and applying the friezes.






As with others, I found the printed friezes in the kit didn't fit my model. Chuck was nice enough to provide reduced size friezes, but I found that even then they were still too big. But, with the files that Chuck provided, I could simply reduce them myself to get something that would fit nicely. In my case, I reduced the art to 95% and it fit great. 


The next problem I encountered with the art was that my printer wasn't producing something that I found satisfactory. It's a good printer, a Canon 780, but adjusting the color just didn't work well enough to suit me. I also tried different kinds of paper, but still not happy. Finally, I remembered I had some Testors brand decal paper and I tried that. Worked like a charm and I was very happy with the results. The color looks good, though different from the original art, and the decals are nice and thin. 



Link to comment
Share on other sites

With this installment, I'm about up to where I was on my other build log. I've done some work since then, but I'll leave it for another time to update the log here.










As you can see in these photos, I've added the floorboards, risers, platforms and stern seats. I used Chuck's technique for scribing the moldings and was really happy with how they turned out. The wood is all treated with a 50/50 mix of Golden Oak and Natural stains. The paint was my own mix of acrylics. I know the brighter red is more authentic, so I chalk up the darker color mix to artistic license.


In the fourth photo, if you look carefully, you can see the light shining through the thin planking above the waterline. 


Finally, I did start the metal work here, shaping the kit provided brass and using the "Brass Black" solution that Bluejacket sells. I find that I get better results using their product than with A-West's "Blacken-It" product. Anyway, the blackened brass was then given a clear coat and glued into place.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you Bob, it's good to be here... finally! 


I have to say, I originally thought the kit was just okay. But, over the course of working on it, and yes I took the long slow route, I've really come to love the way this model looks. You know, I'm tempted to do another one. If I did, at minimum, I'd try adding nails at the frames or at least simulate it. Of course, I'd better finish this one... and maybe some of those other projects that are just sitting around waiting for attention.


Here's one more photo taken at the Good Sam Showcase of Miniatures in San Jose, CA a couple weekends ago. The South Bay Model Shipwrights club was given 1/2 a table to set up a display, so I brought my Mary Taylor model and this "in-progress" model. I'd made a simple base and stand for it in time for the show. I think that little bit of work on it made me realize I need to get it done.


Here's the longboat displayed next to a couple 1:350 models done by Patrick Moloney, one of the other members of the group.



And, the in-progress longboat up close. I made the base from a piece of cherry wood I had. I seldom use the router table I bought a couple years ago, so it was nice to have a quick job to do here.



The posts are actually brass tubing over a thinner brass rod. The inner rod actually stops about 1/2" from the top of the tubing and small brass rods were fit into the keel of the longboat that fit snugly into the tubes. Works well and allows me to remove the model to work on it. I have other models where there is a fixed rod that fits into holes in the keel, but it is too easy to miss the holes when mounting the hull. The result is small dings to the keel or hull. This way, the model keeps clear of the stand until the ends of the fixed rods in the keel are fit into the tubing of the stands.







Edited by catopower
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm determined to finish this model up in the next week or so. During the week, I finished the gudgeons and pintles, and finished making the windlass and handles. Yesterday, I added the thole pins.


The windlass is made from square stock basswood. I considered making this from boxwood but the basswood worked well enough. The hardest part was creating the holes for the handles. I drilled, poked with a pointy #11 X-Acto knife and got them about the right size. Finally, I just pushed the handle into each hole. The square section of the handle kind of evened out the square opening. It's not perfect, but I think it's about the best I'm going to do, at least this time.


The thole pins were kind of interesting. I'm not much of a jig maker, but this time, I ended up taking a piece of brass and making a drill pattern so that all the thole pins are spaced a consistent distance apart. 







Last thing on the rudder were the decorations. Again, mine were printed on decal paper. I realized at some point that I had used clear decal paper instead of white decal paper. The problem with this was that if the decals are placed directly on wood, the color are very subdued. This wasn't a problem with the friezes at the gunwales as I had already painted these areas white. For the rudder, I found that I had to paint white ovals where the decals were to be located. After these dried, I added the decals, which looked fine.







For the handles for the rudder and the windlass, I gave up trying to make a decent looking set out of basswood. Instead, I just took some boxwood strips and made these. They are the only use of wood on the model that is not basswood.




Edited by catopower
Link to comment
Share on other sites


   Looking good!!! 


   I know what you mean when you say you thought the kit was just okay, until you started to work on it.  It certainly provides some challenges that, once mastered (or in my case semi mastered) improve your modeling skills in general.




PS.  How is that newsletter coming?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks Chuck,


I'm now at the point where I'm starting to wonder if I should have stopped early and had a nice un-rigged longboat model. Addling blocks to the mast and all, I already managed to snap the mast at one of sheave holes. It's repaired now, but I worry it may be a little weak. I'll have to be extra careful adding all the rigging. Still moving forward though.





P.S. I'll email you the latest newsletter, but the SF club isn't nearly as interesting as the San Diego group!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...
So near, yet, so far...


Every time I think "Okay, I should have this project done tonight or maybe tomorrow", tonight comes and goes, tomorrow hits and ends and, and again it's "okay, I'll defnitely have this project done tonight, or maybe tomorrow..."


But, seriously, I think I can say that I will have this project done by tonight! Or maybe tomorrow. 


No. Tonight, I think. I have an event to go to this afternoon, but I have lots of time before I have to leave. And, I'll be back shortly after dark and have time to work on it tonight.


All that's left now is to rig four blocks with hooks and rig the jib and staysail halliards and rig the backstays, for which the pendants are already complete. The anchor is rigged and ready to seat with its coil of rope. Oh, and then I just have to tie off the flag halliard. As long as I don't break anything (crossing my fingers here), all should be okay and I can permanently fix the tiller and the handle for the windlass into place.


Here's what it looks like now...





Almost there!



Edited by catopower
Link to comment
Share on other sites



In a marathon late night session last night, I finished my longboat. I tied the last of the rope coils into place, glued the handles on and officially declared victory. I just couldn't go one more day saying that it should be finished by tomorrow.


I'll post a full set of pics in the gallery shortly.


I ended up not including the grappling anchor as the casting seemed too big for the model, especially after looking at Chuck's prototype which has an anchor I really like. Perhaps in the future I'll fashion one that's smaller, but it seemed unnecessary, so I left it out. Also, I did flub the location of the flag halliards and put them on the port side instead of the starboard side as given in the instructions. That didn't seem like it was critical, so I left that as well. 


Here's a final pic with more to be posted in the gallery shortly.





This started out as a kit that I thought was "nice" and ended up being a really fun and challenging build that tested my skills, taught me a few things, and turned out to be a pretty sweet looking model. Chuck did a wonderful job on this kit design I have to say.


I'll be building a case for it in the near future, but at least it's under a dust cover now. 




Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone for the nice comments.


Robbyn, to answer your question, as Elia points out I have a couple build logs here that have been on hold for a bit or moving very slowly. Mostly, I've got a couple projects that I'm doing for other people that I've had to bump to the front of my project queue. I just got tired of not finishing anything, so I pushed the longboat to the front since it was so far along, but it's been in the works since the kits were initially released.


Elia, as I just mentioned, I've got a couple other projects that I'm actually working on for other people. Also, I'm doing a couple out-of-the-box kit reviews for Ships in Scale magazine, and that's actually been a nice distraction. I just finished one that should show up shortly, and then I've got another one or two others I'd like to do in the coming months. It's all a good thing, but it is slowing down these other projects, particularly the Saginaw, on which I'd hit some snags. The Yacht America is actually pretty far along and I was thinking about making some progress on it. If I get it far enough along it'll naturally call on me to finish it. So, stay tuned.




Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...