Decoyman Posted November 6, 2013 Share #1 Posted November 6, 2013 (edited) My next project is the Chaloupe Armee en Guerre or Longboat Armed for War. This will be a scratch-built model at a scale of 1:36, from the plans available here: http://www.ancre.fr/vaisso25.htm. I ordered my copy of the monograph and plans direct from ANCRE and they came speedily and at a very reasonable rate of postage. This is the first publication from ANCRE that I have seen, and I must say I'm impressed. The six sheets of plans are drawn beautifully and the accompanying booklet, which describes the boat and the construction process, is very well laid out. There are many illustrations of the construction process, as well as detail photos of a 1:18 version of the same boat. I should note that the original text was in French and has been translated into English by David H Roberts, who has done an excellent job. Whilst finishing my Agamemnon (http://modelshipworld.com/index.php?/topic/1115-hms-agamemnon-by-decoyman-caldercraft/) I have been collecting pieces of wood I thought might be useful when scratch-building. I discovered The Toolpost (http://www.toolpost.co.uk), a treasure trove of woodworking equipment, in Didcot, about 15 minutes drive from where I live. They have a good selection of hardwoods and fruitwoods, mostly in turning blanks, as well as a selection of pieces of boxwood of varying sizes. They were also happy to cut every piece I bought into 1" slices on their bandsaw. This means I can now machine them to exact dimensions on my Byrnes table saw, which is a pleasure to use! I haven't finally decided which woods to use where, but I'm starting with apple for the keelson and ribs and will probably use cherry for the planking. I acquired a box full of odd pieces of wood, including a large amount of ebony, from eBay for a very reasonable sum: I might try turning one of the ebony pieces to make the large bow-mounted cannon. The picture above shows (from the top) ebony, apple, box and cherry. Before I could get going on the good stuff I needed to make a mould, over which the basic hull will be constructed. The instructions say to make this from 5 mm ply, which actually measures nearer to 4.5 mm thick. Unfortunately French plywood is not available in England; here we have 3 mm and 6 mm, which isn't much use. In fact the nearest thing I could find was 4 mm MDF, available on the internet in packets of ten 400 x 300 mm sheets at a reasonable price. This is still not thick enough. The mould is made from layers cut to the shape of the waterlines, if the layers are too thin then the whole boat will end up compressed vertically. My solution was to interleave the MDF with layers of 0.5 mm cherry veneer, which I happened to have around, so that each layer was 4.5 mm in total. There were some benefits to this method: I could glue photocopies of the plans to each piece of veneer and then cut out each layer accurately using a scalpel. Once that was done I coloured the edges with a black permanent marker. This was so when I sanded the mould to its finished profile I knew that when I reached the black I was nearly there. The next step was to glue the veneers to the MDF and remove the photocopies. I left them to dry overnight, interleaved with cling film and weighted down, and then cut each MDF layer out with a fret saw, slightly larger than the veneer stuck to the top. Each layer was drilled on the centreline at stations 5F and 5A and then stacked up and glued in order with dowels in the holes to provide alignment. I used dowels instead of the drill bits because I could sand the dowels along with the MDF. There was a lot of arm-aching sanding to bring the mould to its final form. I used a Surform for quick removal and then coarse sandpaper on a block for accuracy. The end result was pretty accurate but not perfect. To check the profiles while sanding I glued copies of the frame profiles to 1.2 mm card, as well as the keel. I used these to check I was getting the shape right, but I also cut them so they would slot together. Once the mould fitted all the card frames and the keel I was just about done! In the last of the photos above you can see marking out for the recesses to take the keelson and the knee of the stern. To ensure the keelson recess was the right size I made a start on this piece. It's cut from a piece of 2.3 x 6 mm apple on the table saw, which I also used to cut the rebates for the frames. It curves up towards the stern so I soaked it in hot water for a while, then taped it to the mould. Once the keelson had the correct profile I used it to adjust the recess in the mould. The last thing to finish the mould were two coats of varnish and a polish. The purpose of this is to protect the markings showing the frames and the wales and to try to stop the glue sticking the frames to the mould. We'll see how we get on with this in due course. In the meantime the next task is to bend the frames round the mould. More soon! Rob Edited November 6, 2013 by Decoyman Jeronimo, aykutansin, gjdale and 6 others 9 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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