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15th Century Latin Caravel by Vivian Galad - FINISHED - Artesania Latina - Scale 1/50

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Well, well. Seems I started it all wrong, but I´m trying to right the wrongs. Here are my modelling to the present day.




















Sorry for my lack of description, I´ll try to write it from now on.

Edited by Vivian Galad
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Hello Vivian, 


I am glad to greet another lover of medioeval ships, and a lady too! While it is true that you ladies are not so numerous to represent this wonderful hobby of ship model building, it is certainly true with respect of quality of the job. Some of the best models I ever saw were made by female modellers. So, good luck with your build and show us how a Portuguese caravel looked five hundred years ago!


There are some wonderful portuguese sources to help you. In fact, the best books on shipbuilding of the period which we have today are portuguese. As an example, just take a quick net search for "Fabrica de naus" written by father Fernando de Oliveira back in 1580.

Also, you may do a search for a ship called "Nostra senhora dos martires" also known as "The Pepper wreck" for inspiration.  


And as a welcome gift for you, if you like medioeval ships, take a few moments to look at this wonderful movie: 




Best wishes!

Edited by Doreltomin
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Hey, Riverboat - I got some time to learn how to really do that planking, but was in overall glad with the results. Have to sand a bit and take out some barbs before the varnishing. There I´ve got some doubts for my kit says it would go really black on the hull, which I find not so beautifull as a more wooden varnish. Any tips or information on that would be very apreciated ^^


Doretolmin, tyvm for your welcoming. I wanted to put to work the Nau São Gabriel, flagship for Vasco da Gama´s expedition through Cape Hope but found no kits, so, it´s already on my wish list for scratch building in the future, hope not too distant. I found a thesis on the importance and evolution of portuguese caravels, some 241 pages of pure knowledge, goes by THE HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT OF CARAVELS A Thesis by GEORGE ROBERT SCHWARZ. Loved your hints too, all info on the subject is hard to come by. Looking through some barcha and borinel models (pre-caravel trading ships), now, for study. Ty for the present ^^


Anja - Yey! I found it! =D

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Today´s work.






















Had some problems with my deck, since I ignored the step in which I should cut off the initial frame before planking it. Now I got this ugly unmathcing woods all over. Modified a bit of the original plan, since it can´t be followed due to an error, still don´t know if a print error or cutting, or even a plan error regarding the manufacturer. Some minor problems on the sterncastle too, as the piece in the kit weren´t fitted to fill all the gap, so, had to improvise.

Edited by Vivian Galad
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Frank, ty!


Sam, on the deck planking. I should have ripped off the framing, which where there only for the hull planking - I left it there and took it out after I had finished the deck. U can see it on the 6th picture, next to the rail. Since I don´t want to make a second layer, I´m still thinking how to fix it. I´m learning though, and the forum is helping a lot. Ppls´ logs are very helpful, almost a tutorial. ^^

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Thats frustrating, but its how we learn - well at least it how I learn... sort of, I usually have to make the same mistake 2 or 3 times first  :huh: 



I have a similar problem with my build IE; holes in the decking, perhaps you can employ some of the same fixes I am planing - ropes, buckets mops?


There is a thread here in the decking forum that may help.


Shes looking good though, you will work through it


And yes there are some great build/tutorials here.



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Sam, many thanks. I thought to put some barrels, but now I have far more things to cover them mistakes. Sometimes we think about the crude view of the boat and forget about it´s life! Ropes, barrels, cannon balls, people - all of them give life to our models. Rlly happy I found the forum.

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Glad I could help out. I have received so much help from people I have never met and most likely never will, its amazing. My humble little build is so much more than it would be with out the input from people at MSW yours will too I bet. MSW is really a great place, it was initially a resource for me, but its become much much more. 


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As of today. I´ve got some minor work to do before putting it to varnish, but hope to get there till next weekend.


Noob error - did not put much thought about the deck and when was planking, let it go the full lenght. Now I see I should have cutted them so my planking would not look like a fake one. Thinking on put some lines and dots on that, before varnishing - don´t know how it will look like after that, but...







Think I´ll be more careful next time with bringing the planks together. Got this minor gap to fill, now.









Well. That´s it. Would love to have some critics on what I´ve done so far. When I look to this hull I get very proud of it, but I´m not so naive that I can´t get some directions from more experienced builders. ^^

Edited by Vivian Galad
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Hi Vivian,


I have just read your log and I think you have done a wonderful job on her so far. The hull planking is smooth and neat.


If you want to simulate scale length planks on your deck, after marking the deck out to the pattern you want, you could carefully scibe a line across each plank with a sharp scalpel


As Sam said some strategically placed rope coils and buckets should coever the gaps in the deck where the frames were cut off, I would however also cover the gaps with small pieces of deck plank 

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Sam, I´ve improvised my work station. Have few tools and I´m buying them as I need. Already noticed a lamp will fit as a glove and, as soon as I can, will fetch me a studio with a work bench and things for the hobby I do see as permanent in my life. Thanks for the tips!! ^^


Hipe, many thanks. :D

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Shes buying tools folks, she is addicted, there is no turning back!

An entire studio? Will you talk to my wife and 'splain her for me? 


Smart move buying as you need, you will make fewer bad choices. Although as an admitted tool addict, I dont think there are any truly BAD tools, just tools that dont work as well as others.


Improvised workstation. Thats good, 90% of this hobby seems to hinge on improvising, at least for me.


Looking forward to your next update.



Edited by src
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Very nice work! Im glad to see a medieval topic.

Im also new to building wood models and it for me it takes a while to get the hang of how to work with wood. Im one year into my model and I can now see the misstakes I did in the first steps. But the misstakes arent to big and I keep them and look at them as lessons learned.


I think Im one of few that actually prefer wonky and not perfect. Thats one of the things I like with the old ships: that they were handbuilt without modern ways to make them perfect. Vasa for example is very wonky and unsymmetrical and it gives a very beautyful lifefull and almost organic look that I try to get with my model of her.



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Sam, I´m learning that! Improvisation, with care. ^^


Matti, I´ve sanded some angles and tried to give a used look to my ship. Have modified a bit the original plans, since some of the details could be more to my liking and to pictures I´ve seen. This is my first wooden model but I´m already bidding on a Cocca Anseatica, hope I win this one - Another medieval ship. One year! That´s some time! I´ve been by your work too and it´s a beautiful work, gratz on your achievments so far ^_^

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Sam's right...   :D  You're hooked Vivian.


One tool you already have... a camera.  Take photos at every step and look at them.  The camera sees things our eyes don't.  It gives you a chance to fix things while they can be fixed and you'll be happier.


Nice work on her.  I think you're doing great.  We all make mistakes and as we build, we learn.  The great thing about MSW the other eyes of folks looking in.  It makes the learning easier.

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Mark, I´ll be putting some new pictures right now. Just varnished a first hand and will give it all a darker hue, though I rlly loved the hull wooden color. Don´t know if I go with the original plan and put it almost to black, or if I just give that old stain.












Drilled those ones on a dremel - need some tools for it, though. Would be easier if I didn´t have to hold it while sculping the pieces.





Here I was a bit disappointed about the kit, for dead eyes came in metal - so, had to buy some wooden ones and will have to wait a bit till they get here - didn´t find them in Brazil.


Edited by Vivian Galad
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