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US Brig Syren by Gahm - Model Shipways

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impeccable work Thomas, as well as the photos and presentation.  I particularly appreciate your detailed descriptions and ingenuity in solving problems, which will help many of us when we reach the same point in our builds.  I love the compass!  Thanks for sharing.

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One of the last “deck furnitures” on my Syren model was the pump. To build it I followed Chuck’s plans enhanced by some additional details found in other descriptions of how the pump worked (Charles Davis, Mondfeld).


The major part of the pump cross bar was milled out of a brass sheet of appropriate thickness. The two end pieces consist of parts of a square brass tube, shaped according to plan and fitted on the ends of the cross bar as adapters for the handles (image 1). The platform and the stand were built out of basswood and pear (image 2). I keep using this wood combination because I want to have the advantage of pear for shaping the details, but as I initially started out with basswood I need to keep the overall appearance of the model consistent. Image 3 shows the parts which make up the pump drums. As I had decided to model the upper pump valves as well each drum is connected to a part of the pipe in which the upper valve will be moving. In image 4a the finished drums can be seen. I used a technique already described earlier in this build log (mast holes) to drill two holes in the Syren deck to receive the pipes attached to the pump (image 4b). Image 5 shows the parts and construction of the connecting arms between the pump cross bar and the upper valves. These hinged connectors are made out of brass pieces shaped according to plan and silver soldered together. In image 6 the cross bar – valve assembly can be seen before the valves are finally inserted in the pump drums. As hinge bolts I used two 0.7mm nails (Scale Hardware) per hinge, cut to correct length, one bolt inserted from each side and glued together within the middle of the hinge hole in the cross bar. That probably was the most challenging part of the whole assembly :). To insure correct and consistent length of the bolts I milled the thickness of a piece of aluminum to match the bolts’ length (image 7), inserted the bolts one after the other in a predrilled hole and cut and filed down the bolts to be flush with the metal surface. Images 8 and 9 show the assembled pump.





Image 1



Image 2



Image 3



Image 4



Image 5



Image 6



Image 7



Image 8



Image 9

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Thank you so much for your generous comments! And thanks for all the likes! I know it probably was a waste of time to make all the pump parts working - looking at the model nobody but me will notice anyway  . . . but I had a lot of fun doing it and that is what I want to get out of this hobby - to have fun :) 



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Thomas -


As so many others have said, your work is stunning!


A couple of suggestions.  You might want to consider installing the channels and chain plate assemblies before you install the hammock cranes and the hammock netting.  The cranes & netting are stronger than I thought they would be, but they are still quite fragile and liable to be damaged when you are working on the chain plate assemblies etc.  Also, build the 25 foot longboat but defer securing it to the top of the gallows bits until after some of the lower rigging components are installed.  If you don't, I think you will find that the longboat gets in your way when you are trying to do the rigging.


Just my two cents.  You are doing an outstanding job and I am looking forward to your future posts on this build log.



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Thank you, Hervie and Gary!


Gary, thank you for your advice! Your points are well taken! I was already wondering which might be the best way to proceed once I am finished with the deck details. Of course there is still the rigging of the carronades, which probably will take for ever at my snails pace  ;)



Edited by Gahm

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