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Rattlesnake by scott larkins - FINISHED - Model Shipways - Scale 1:64


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Looks good to me !

 

You did this from the keel to the top of the bulk heads ? If it all looks like your last pic I think you'll be happy with the final result. I didn't fair my last bulkhead very well and didn't find out till I was planking. I had to add shims during the planking stage. It wasent that hard so if their is an issue you missed theirs a good chance you can fix it. I think one of the members here has the quote " wood is forgiving" and it's very true.

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Sport,

 

Yes, I went all the way up and down the bulkheads all the way along the ship to check for proper alignment.  Even tried a little bit of fitting the end of the plank into the rabbet and bent around bulkheads A/B and L/M; and tried to see how the keel rabbet worked with the transition to the blukheads.  When I said I tried to bend the plank at least up to 4 bulkheads I was really focusing on the ends.  In the middle I was able to, with pins, get up to 6 bulkheads "eyed".  The whole process got kind of tedius after a while and I moved on to cutting out and sanding the transom to take a break from it all.  Perhaps I was putting too much pressur on myself to get it right the very first time but I know how criticle this step is to getting a smooth flow of the hull.  I so want this to look really good when I'm done and I would like to do as little hull sanding as possible.

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Got a few more little things done in the last few days.

 

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My version of the Rattlesnake transom.  Molding and the ship name to come in a little while.  Like after I get the stern filler blocks made and installed.  I need to see if I can do something else.  Yes, I added planks across the face, reframed the windows and put the rest of the window panes in, and I put clear plastic behind the windows.  Not sure if I'll paint the back side blue, black or paint the captain's cabin dark red and leave the windows to show the painted inside.

Edited by scott larkins
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Sport,

 

Thanks, a fine tipped paint brush and a magnifying glass can take most of the credit.  The stars have since left, they fell off, oh well.  I had put them on in a simply minded attempt to replicate a professional model I saw of the rattlesnake.  Not sure if they have a meaning or not.  Doesn't matter now.  I have also added the fake middle window in. I will be painting the hull white below the water line, a few bands of black, the gunwal (sp?) yellow ochra and they will be a stripe of blue, like you see here, along the side of the forcastle and poop deck.  Trying to replicat that professional job I saw.  The colors really pop.

 

Word to others reading this build log.  Do not simply attach the window frames to the back of the transom, they must be inside the transom window frames. I did not notice until I did a dry fit of the transom to the filler wood behind bulk head M, the wood covers up part of the windows; and thus my transom did not sit flush with the wood block.  If you look at the drawings that come with the kit you will barely notice that the level of the top of the wood actually goes behind the window.  I did not see that.  Or siimply wished not to see it.  Needless to say, after a few choice words late last night, I have modified my windows just a tad.  Now I know why the instructions have you paint the windows, because unless you do some major kit basing, parts of the windows are over the wood.

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I wish you luck with your build, and watch it with great interest

 

For now, only to say: Bulwark stage is more important than you think. Mistakes there REFLECT direct to lines of hull and lines of decks, and if you mess there, you will have terrible headache how to resolve further problems of lost lines. So, think it 10 times, and another 10 times, and move on slowly and precisely as you can. I did not, and went directly in swamp of mistakes, and lost months in trying to correct consequences of earlier mistakes.

 

Take your time, do not hurry. This is not competition ( where was this thinking when I start ?)

 

Waiting for your progress

 

Nenad

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Okay, made changes to the Transom and made the filler blocks.

 

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Changed the windows, added the middle one and the name with molding. Pretty much just followed the instructions.

 

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The bow filler blocks were not too bad to make.  My advise to others is to get yourself a hand held drummel with a sanding drum.  I used a small hand held saw, the drummel and a big nail file the get these right.

 

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Here are the stern blocks.  The horizotal block was not too bad to make.  Make sure you use sand paper wrapped around a dowel to make the curved part.  The lower stern fillers are in no way fun.  Turning wood blocks into these oddly shaped three dimensional pieces are by no way easy.  One has to think very three dimensionally.  I spent a lot of time using a plank to measure here, there and everywhere in between. I don't think mine turned out as well as some others but it's what the planks say needed to be done.  When I get to the planking I may have to use some filler.  Or did I really botch these?

 

Update, because I was feeling guilty I used some wood filler and smoothed out the transition from the stern filler to the tansom block.

Edited by scott larkins
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Here is a close up of the transom to give you a final look. Imagine the hull plank terminating right where the transom filler bock is. I didn't think about this so my planks made a sharp last curve to meet the transom planking. The basswood bent better than I thought. It seemed close to a 90 degree angle. I think this is what others warn about. If you got a smooth transition your in good shape. In my case I think I goofed it up and was still able to pull it off.

 

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Thanks for the pic there Eric.  After reviewing everyone's transom work I put a lot of consideration into the whole stern area.  Like you said, i didn't want to make too much of a bend angle back there.  Especially considering that the planks transform from horizontal to vertical in that whole area.  Your transform looks really good, I like how you got your letters to be large.  For some reason my model did not have that much space available.  Don't know why considering I think we are both macking the shipways model.  Perhaps I messed up somewhere else.

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Next, perhaps a little out of order from the instructions was the two (or four) bow pieces.  Like others before me, I made the back piece a little thicker to allow for planking pressure and I made the Knights head thicker too so I would have places to glue and not worry about snapping.  Here's the pick of my work.

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Here I made sure the wood was plumb.  Again my Knights head was made thicker by gluing two pieces of sacraficed planking together.  Note:  Not sure that was so smart.  When I cut out the railing pieces, my knights head is too thick as the lower laser cut bow piece is supposed to fit over the lower railing piece. Now I'm going to have to cut the Knights head to get things to work.  You make you choice,  thin woood or thick.  Also note that the back pieces on the bow were cut and sanded appropriately.

 

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The waterways are easy to file, I measuered two sides of the wood as per the plans and used my drummel to sand, at an angle, down to the marks.  Half way on the two sides makes for a nice 45 degree angle.  I soaked the wood and bent it.  Be careful.  Due to the thickness of the wood piece and the sever angle, the wood started popping and making little cracking noises.  I figured that the wood must have been starting to break.  I didn't panic, I ended up doing the bending by hand instead of my bending board.  Once I was sure it was close I let it dry with the cloths pins over night, then glued the next day and let set over night.  The cloths pins did a nice job of keeping the waterway pieces tucked into the corners of the bulkhead risers.

Edited by scott larkins
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Have a question for the other Rattlesnake builders.  When does one add the poopdeck bulkhead door piece.  Nowere, at least that I could find, do the instructions actually tell you the best time to add the facepiece.  And then what wood do you use?  It doesn't seem like the supplies come with wood for this and all I have to go by in making it is the print on the drawings.  HELP!

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Scott, keep up the good work !

 

As for the cabin access doors (not sur if that's what they are called) I'll be installing mine in a week or two after I finish planking the deck. My reasoning is that they would be removed when the ship was readied for action, I think. I'm going to use boxwood and cherry vernier for these doors. Not to sure what others are going use? I kinda feel like the point man of the rattlesnake builds so if anyone has any ideas I'm listening too.

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Movin Movin Movin, keep this post a movin.  Next,

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Here you can see my choice to cut off the top of the knights head becasue I made it too thick for the bottom of the forecastle bottom rail to fit over it.  You can see that small hole at the point of the bow.  That is supposed to fit over and around the knights head.  oops.  I will probably dowel and glue the top back on later.  This was my choice and not per instructions.  I altimately felt that the original knights head was too thin and febble.  You don't have to follow my choice.  I am also not putting those two pieces on yet.  I'm going to wait until I plank that area to make sure I get the depth that it sits out from the hull correct.  Those two pieces become an outside framing / molding piece.  I suppose you could put it on and add additional framing later but I'm not sure how that would affect the overall build of the forecastle decking and railing.  It looked like the bow piece is supposed to fit in a certain way.

 

Next is to frame in the cannon and oar ports.  I built a small piece of decking and a cannon to make sure I get the dimensions and placement correct.  The cannon is not finished yet.  I still have to put on the various pins and rings but you get the idea.

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I took this idea from others before me because I thought it made good sense.  Just my luck I'd place the openings too high.  I'm hoping an ounce of prevention now saves me a ton of heart ache later.  This will also be the color I use to paint the inside of the deck walls.  It looks quite a bit darker here than it actually is.  I was standing between the cannon and the light for this pic.  I like the dark rich color of this red.  Well, rust actually.  Next post will be of the framing.  AAHHhhhhhh, then the planking.  Very nervous about those steps.

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Came up with this jig.  How's this for luck.   The pieces of wood I used to reenforce the bulkheads also happens to be the same size as the cannon ports and I had scrap wood left over from other works to frame in the oar ports.  Although this piece does not have an oar port in it.  Hopefully this will work well or perhaps work for others. Or if it doesn't work for me you know what not to do. LOL

 

I made measurements for the ports, cut the wood, placed it in the jig and then measured from the right edge of the jig to the tall cannon port piece.  Then placed a small amount of glue on a toothpick and just touched the wood intersections.  Once this "tack job" was done I took it out of the jig and then glued the corners to make a stronger bond.

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Edited by scott larkins
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make sure the thickness of your framing will fill the distance between the inner and outer planking, otherwise you will have gaps in you gun ports where the planking inner and/or outer planking meets it. also remember there is a gentle curve to the hull so your framing will have to be faired to match the curve.

Hope that helps and makes sense.

Edited by sport29652
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Here is one side done.

 

Eric.  I don't think the wood suggested for this work is as thick as the bulkheads.  I did see, I think in one of the other Rattlesnake posts, that the bulk head extensions above the deck may need to be sanded down to the correct thickness.  Thanks for the reminder as I had forgotten about this. I will look at the the wood thickness and the sanding and see what I need to do.  I will also make sure to look at the rail caps to make sure the wall thickness is correct for either one of the two methods verses the rail caps.  But anyways, here is my first side done.  I think the small deck piece and cannon really helped in setting these to the proper height.  I did make sure that these pieces where properly sanded for the fairing.

 

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Edited by scott larkins
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looking you are double good amigo. I like the way you are double checking your work. When I was still working we had a rule in my dept. Triple check your dimensions before the you make the first cut. Saved me the hassel of getting yelled at by the boss.

David B

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dgbot and Mike.  Thanks!

 

After I finish the next side I'll take a serious step in slowing down.  I've got a few papers to read on planking and a few build logs to review.  I'm really nervous about the next step.  I really hate wasting the wood from the kit and have no likeness for multiple repeated mistakes.  I'm waiting to see how many I made up to this point when the planking comes up.

 

Keep working on it Mike.  You'll get here.  Keep reviewing those logs.  I do, almost daily.

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Okay, the last side of cannon and oar ports are done.

 

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I'm just going to do a little sanding on the sides and do an eye ball of the lines of both sides to make sure it all flows well from front to back.  Then..... da da daaaaaaa, the planking.  Looks like it is going to be a while for my next post.  I have a lot of reading to do from both the instructions and other planking instructions found on this site.  I can only hope my planking comes out as well as some of the others I've seen here.

 

Perhaps for those coming behind me, if I was going to do this again, knowing that I was not going to put actual cannons in the officers quarters, that is the last three cannons, I would not have taken the time to put in the cannon framing and cut out the gunwal planking later.  My advice to you, if you are not putting in any cannons back there, don't place and cut all of that stuff out.  Don't waste the time. You are just going to glue the cannon door on in the closed position anyways.

Edited by scott larkins
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I'll look for that. Is it here on this site?  I did pull up one thick article on planking from this site and its instructions on planking are quite different than the rattlesnake's plans.  Where the snake's plans show three sections of strakes, the article describes 4 sections plus some left over.  Plus a lot of drawing on paper, or card paper and transferring to a chart.  Not sure whether to go with the article or the plans; or simply go with the flow of the ship and more or less wing it.  Suggestions?  I really don't want to make this more difficult than it has to be.

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What you found is probably one of the ways of spiling a plank.  As to three or four bands make it easy on yourself and stick with the three.  That way you have a visual aid.  Once the battens are laid out to your satisfaction you then proceed to fill it in.  It may seem hard but in the long run it will be worth it.  At one of my club meetind there is an old saying. Practice makes perfect.  The biggest hurdle is getting there.

David B

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Next steps have been started. Did a little sanding on the bulkheads, both inside and out and got the Wale plank on.  First I took some time to really eyeball the bulkhead smoothness from top to bottom and made sure that those rail pieces are the proper thickness as per the plans.  Don't want any gaps in the port holes when the two sides of the rails get put on.  I believe JPett mentioned something to that effect in another RS post.  Zev's maybe?  I also took a little extra time to bend a planking piece on the bulkheads again for fairness.  Did a little sanding and touching to "feel" for smoothness and flow.  I find that sometimes your hands can feel what your eyes cannot see.  Anyways.  I think I'll start at the top and get the rail planking done first.  Seems easier and would allow me to break in my skills for planking later.  Here are some pics.

 

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Here's a neat trick I saw from another builder here on MSW for holding planks on during glueing.  Easy to buy these clips and modify them and leaves no holes in the wood.  Thus no worry about splitting the narrow planks.

 

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I have two clips on the stem because I have two pieces of wood laying over the left side piece to keep it in place and at the correct level.

 

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And here I go, got the wale plank/ strike done.  I'm told this is very key for the next steps so I hope it passes the test of all of you out there.

 

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Did a little tapering on the bow as the instructions suggested.  I want to thank Eric for his help on this.  As suggested in the planking for beginners pdf from this site, I  started the bow taper several bulkheads back so it would be gradual.

Edited by scott larkins
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Hi Scott -- I just came across your build log, and had to check in as one Ratt builder to another.  You're making some great progress there, and, best of all, you seem to be enjoying the process.

 

Keep up the steady work -- I'll be looking forward to seeing more!

 

Cheers,

 

Martin

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On to the rails now.  In actuallity, the rails are pretty easy.  I made sure not to use too much glue and what squeezed out as I pushed the strips together I made sure to wipe it away quickly.  One thing I did for the bow was to use another piece of wood over the bow section with a cloths pin holding it in tight until the wood held.  It got a tad tricky back by the stern.  The lower wood pieces had to go from verticle to almost horizontal.  But they did come back to verticle as I worked my way back up.

 

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After putting about four rows on I started cutting out the cannon and row ports.

 

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As I moved up two more rows I once again cut out the ports.  I had to do a little touch up painting as I knicked or filed off some of the color of the ports.  Couldn't really help it really.

 

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As I got to the sixth row I ran out of the stem piece to use as a glue spot.  Unfotunetley the instructions don't tell you how to manage from here up.  Guessing I'll use something similar as before with a temporary piece of wood as I move up, making sure that the planks are glued together between seams.  Unless someone out there would like to share some words of wisdom.

Edited by scott larkins
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Got the outside sides done.  Moving on to the insides next.

 

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Here was my solution to making sure the bow pieces would stay lined up with the lower pieces.  I used two pieces of wood on both sides and the cloths clip forced the wall plank to stay in line with the lower pieces that were already clued to the knights head.

 

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Oops,  Did I end up doing this or the manufacturer?  My plank count was correct yet I ended up about half a plank above the forecastle bulkheads.  Perhaps the wale plank is too high.  Well, no biggy.  It was just the back ones (B & C) so I shimmed them up so all would be level.  Easy fix.

 

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Got the sides done and sanded.  I used a 320 grit paper at first and then finished it with a 600 grit paper.  Make sure to sand with the grain, that is, along the length of the ship.  Even in the stern by the transom.  I had to very carefully pull the paper out of that corner.

 

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More of the above.  I took the ship out of the holder and held onto the whole ship as I sanded, cleaned with a larger model paint brush.  I had to make sure not to sand the wale piece, there is supposed to be a "shelf" there.

 

Oh almost forgot.  Messed up the back pretty bad.  About 4 planks up the side from the wale, at the back behind the last gun port, I found out that my wale plank, back at the stern, were not actually at the same height.  My eyes said they looked the same.  So the starboard side actually has one more plank on the forecastle section than the port side.  I don't think it's really going to mess up the molding pieces though.  I don't think if I said anything anyone would notice.  But I know.  After sanding the top of the rails so they were level at the forecastle, I think it all leveled out.  Anyways, word of warning, find a way to double check the wale height before gluing.

Edited by scott larkins
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Okay, got some serious work done during the past week or so.  Finished the inside gunwals (SP?)  No more excuses for not working on the planking now.  Man!

 

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Not too bad I think.

 

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I didn't plank further back as I'm not showing the cabins etc. The bulkhead will go in so I planked just past that for "flow through" effect.

 

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Well the level says it is level but if you look really close it appears that the right side is taller.  Or my eyes are uneven? LOL  The plank count is correct, the level is correct but yet I can't help but think it isn't.  Well, I guess I'll leave it alone. Not going to argue it at this point.

 

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The front part is level at the top of the rails.  Either I'm better than I thought at building these things or just luckier than usual.  Considering this is my first real build of a wood model with this level of difficulty I'll go with lucky.  LOL  And if you were wondering, yes, the forecastle is level too.  Wow.

 

Really don't know what more advice to give here from the few previous posts on this step.  Make sure the bulkhead pieces and the cannon and oar frames are level on the inside and outside of the bulkheads before starting this so there is no gap between the frames and planks.  Eric reminded me of that.  Kinda important.  Measure twice, cut once,  Keep the planks tight to one another when gluing.  I found cloths pins worked well when gluing these pieces.    I'll go back to the metal paper clips for the actual planking.  To cut the gun ports, as I've said, I used a small hack saw blade with my fingers and followed up with an exacto knife.  I used small jewels files for filing the ports smooth after cutting.  Hope this all helps.

Edited by scott larkins
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