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Narrowing down the field for first ship model


Bill Hime
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My names Bill Hime. These are three kits I've narrowed my choice to:

 

1) Sirene, French Frigate by Corel 1:75 scale

 

2) La Gloire, French Frigate by Mamoli 1:90 scale

 

3) Usf Confederacy, Admiralty Model 1778, 1:64 scale

    NOTE: This is the one that is really calling to me.

 

 

I don't know anything about these companies or these models. Any imput would be greatly appreciated

 

Thanks, Bill Hime

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Hi Bill

 

For a first model.. and since the Confederacy seems to be your favourite... why not try the Brig Syren first? A slightly smaller and simpler ship. Designed by the same person (our very own Chuck) so the kit goes together using much the same techniques.

 

You may also wish to consider some of the Caldercraft or Amati offerings, like the cutters Sherbourne (CC) or Lady Nelson (Amati), both 1:64

 

In this hobby it often pays to start with smaller simpler vessels in the same interest range as the larger kits we often drool over. Since you're not putting out as much money, it's a lot less heartbreaking when things go south on you. But there's always everyone here to cheer you along and offer helpful advice and the like.

 

Once you've got a kit or two under your belt, then go for that dream ship you've been wanting. All the experience and knowledge you've gained will really help you to make a model that will stand out.

 

Hope that helps a bit.

 

Andy

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In terms of instructions, I like Corel.  I agree with Andy, you certainly can buy one of the kits you mentioned, but it may make the build easier once you beat up on a smaller kit to get your basic skills tested and tried.  Do both at the same time, it will make things much more enjoyable and less frustrating in my opinion.

 

Check out the Model Shipways boats, ton of people here have experience with them and also the guy who designed some of them runs this site.  

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Hi Bill,

for my two cents I would go with Confederacy.  I like Model Shipways kits best, and of the three kits you listed it is the largest scale.  For me, working in less than 1:72 scale is too tiny.  I do agree with Andy though, for your first build I would take on a less expensive model, Syren would be an excellent choice.  But if Confederacy is the one calling to you.  go for it.  The most important thing is that you love the vessel you are building. 

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Andy, 

Thank you. I understand the points you make. I will definitely take a look at the Caldercraft models and the Lady Nelson, assuming her namesake!

 

Casey S, 

I do like the idea of doing both. Especially because I wanted to get into some rigging work as well this winter. The one thing I loved most about model railroading was that you could work on so many different aspects as you choose, while waiting for materials or taking a break from some of the more tedious task. To this point have not had the room to do the size of layout that would satisfy my needs.

 

John,

I completely agree about scale! I'm very detail oriented. My whole goal is to create as much scale detail as possible, and in time to push the limits of the craft. That's what satisfies me :)

 

So here's my conclusion: I'm going to do the Confederacy as my first. At the same time, I'm going to find another, smaller project that is different enough to be a nice change up for the duration of the main build. The above imput all helped me come to this conclusion. Thank you, Andy, Casey S, and John :)!

 

 

 

Bill 

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Bill, hope you start a build log, would love to see how you progress and people will always seek to help.  Speaking also as a newcomer to the hobby a few years ago, I forced myself away from the larger more complex kits based on a lot of reading on this site.  In the end I compromised and am building CCs HMS Snake, pretty similar I think the Syren.  I'm glad I took that approach, one of the bigger barriers I found was the repetition found on the larger builds, but I'm not quite sure I would have been able to keep pushing through with a bigger kit without the knowledge I'm now building.  Now I understand better (though of course not completely) how these things typically work, I'm much more confident I'd know how to tackle a larger more complex build (and actually finish it!) to a level I'd be satisfied with.

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Hi Jason! I understand what you're are saying. I think for me, taking on two builds simultaneously will give me the best of both worlds. I am most comfortable when challenged at the best of my current abilities. That's how I learn and grow. I've never been one to measure myself or others by limitations, but rather potential. The difficulty of any endeavor has never been a deciding factor for me. I look to the endeavor to feed me and fill my heart. That is what brings me peace :)

 

I will definitely start a build log very soon, even before the kit arrives. I will share every detail, even my research and thought process. Finishing the new work space this week. The "C.W. Hime Shipyard" should be open for business by the end of this coming weekend!

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Ahoy Bill :D

 

Might I recommend one of these for your side build. They can be a quick introduction to the many the aspects of shipbuilding and make a great looking display piece.

 

http://www.modelexpo-online.com/product.asp?ITEMNO=MV32W

 

http://www.modelexpo-online.com/product.asp?ITEMNO=SM24W

 

Looking forward to the grand opening of the C.W. Hime Shipyard

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Brian C. I do hear you. With that said, we do not all have the same "baseline". We all have different life experiences and influences that bring each of us to the point we are at as of today. I have been very blessed to have been surrounded by artisans and tradesmen my whole life. I have had woodworking tools in my hands since I was 8 yrs old. I have been modeling in some fashion from the same age and up to now.

Not every bodies "first boat" experience is going to be the same. Nor are they all going to be content and ultimately fulfilled with picking something that doesn't test their personal baseline.

I must say that the first thing I questioned after reading your last post was; "Why did you throw it in the fire..what a waste! I would have put it on the shelf and admired it as my first. I would continue to reflect back upon it with each new model appreciating how much my "baseline" has grown...But that's me, we're just different. No better than one another, just different :)

 

Best wishes to you!  Bill Hime

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Hi Bill,

I'm currently scratch building the Confederacy using Chucks plans and instructions.  I have built lets see Latinas Harvey, HMS Bounty, Panarts Royal Caroline, Corels Wappen Von Hamburg (unfinished) and Bob Hunts Fair American (also unfinished).  

 

With basic woodworking skills - all of these models are in the same range as far as difficulty - the main difference being length of build which can be a bear.  Continued enthusiasm,  dedication and effort towards a modeling subject in my opinion are the biggest challenges as far as ship modeling is concerned.  Thats why there are so many unfinished builds (including two of my own staring at me in my office) Confederacy is clocking in as my longest build (4 years next month) - but then again I'm scratching it. As a kit should take less than half this amount of time. 

 

Hope this helps - good luck in your selection,

Chris

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Hi Nigel! Thank you for the warm welcome! And thank you for a great post!

 

For me, once I start walking through the build, I see it as if I too were 1/64th scale. My imagination can see every mortise and tendon. I can smell the aroma of wood being worked. I can feel my thickened hands wrapped around every tree nail as I set them with my beech wood mallet.

 

My chisels, they are sharp and cut true, a relationship with the wood that rings like Mozart through the shipyard. Each day is like a first date. Time stands still until suddenly the night is over. I walk through her one last time. Lantern held high, my eyes trace her lines as the shadows frame her beauty. My chest grows tight, I am in love.

 

Each day I spend with her she grows in her splendor. She is a princess of the best stock. Each plank and beam hand picked for her approval. Every man that looks upon her, if he's worth his salt, can't help but feel as I do.

 

Nothing is rushed, I simply don't want it to end. Someday she will leave my shipyard. All that I can do is make sure every detail has been given it's proper time, so she is prepared to survive an uncertain world...

 

 

 

Passion is Patience...and I am a carpenter at any scale

 

 

Bill Hime

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Chris,

I have just seen your post. Thank you for your thoughtful imput. I think there are many reasons people lose interest. And I would think that everyone of us that has pursued an endeavor outside our daily responsibilites has from time to time, succumb to this disappointment. Some more than others. I think your point is a valid one that everyone should consider. ..

 

Sometimes one just needs to clear life out of the way and pursue what fuels their heart and fore go the excuses...That's what I've done :)

 

 

Warm Regards,  Bill

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I will say this Bill - both Confederacy and Syren have some of the most comprehensive instructions you will find today and are excellent/accurate designs by Chuck Passaro -  who generously offers tech support.  I'd go with these over the Mamoli or Corel kits.  But then again, build what you passionate about.  

 

Look forward to seeing a build log !

Best,

Chris

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Boyd,  

Thank you so much for your kind words!

 

JPett,

I started drawing pictures of tall ships when I was in the 4th-5th grade. I think my interest was sparked by my teacher reading Moby Dick to us everyday in class. She would turn the lights down, it was quiet time, and she would read. Later that same year, I saw the movie Moby Dick with Gregory Peck in black and white.

I grew up in a family of artisans. One grandfather a wood carver. The other a carpenter in the winter and a lumberjack in the summer. My father, a true genius. Not well suited for the world around him. He was a master mechanic, machinist and carpenter. He scratch-built HO gauge brass steam locomotives that belonged in museums.

 

I've never built a piece of furniture or cabinet, house or barn that I didn't develop a relationship with. I feel like I'm finally home. This is that piece that was missing. I was always meant to build ships, whether the scale be 1:1 or 1:64, this brings peace to my heart.

And now I have a wonderful wife and many new friends to share this journey with...!

 

Warm Regards,

 

Bill

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  • 2 weeks later...

Bill,

I too, come from a long line of artisans.  Farmers, carpenters, block layers, stone quarymen, all had the passion to build something.  Any of them were likely multiskilled and loved working with their hands.  My dad was a farmer, which by description required many types of working skills, and he was as at home planning and doing the seasonal crop as he was in carpentry, concrete work, and woodworking.  I don't think that he ever met a job that he couldn't feel confident that he could accomplish well. 

 

I grew up with a similar variety of skills and understanding.  This is where I believe you are.  I feel the same way about the many cabinetry and buildings as I do about the variety of models that I have produced over the years. 

 

My dad used to say,"It is not so important for you to have everything in mind regarding what you need to know to accomplish a job as it is to know where to find out what you need to know, even though it has been forgotten for awhile."  If you can find it to refresh your memory, it can be as it once was. Useful and ready to use. 

 

I watch in awe of some of the mastery of ship construction knowledge that I have seen in this and our former site.  I am capable as a carpenter, and a former SEA BEE in the Navy and have worked with shipwrights.  Still I find new aspects of how to do things.  I think you are right to assess your own experience and skill sets as to know where to begin.  I am a scratch builder.  I don't know when or where I learned how to do this, but I know I can do much as long as I can envision an outcome.  GO FOR IT!  Just keep reading and studying what others have done, and it can become a part of your knowledge and skills.  I totally enjoy this hobby, and really appreciate that I am not on a deadline.  A lot of times I may set it aside for a few days or months while I decide how I want to progress. 

 

The wood is patient.

 

Sincerely, Walter Biles

Edited by Walter Biles
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Hi Bill, am loving the flow and prose of your posts and I shall  be looking out for your log !

 

Quick question, could you perhaps put a mention in this post when you begin it.. that way we can be in at the start, I feel this may be one not to be missed both from the work and the writing.

 

It is a simple pleasure to read this log..

 

Eamonn

 

From a long line of Boat owners, Master Mariners & Marine Engineers.. sailors all, yet could hardly hammer a nail, and I've inherited the ability, alas :)

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