Captain Al Posted December 27, 2013 Share #1 Posted December 27, 2013 For those who did not see my introductory post when I first joined about a week ago, I will summarize: I am 68 years young and have been retired a few years. My wife and I have been sailors on SF Bay and coastwise for 25 years but sold our last boat (a Baba 30 by Perry) a few years back. Over the years I have accumulated lots of woodworking tools both hand and power and have a modicum of skill with them. I've wanted to start ship modeling for a long time in order to satisfy my love of woodworking, sailing and everything nautical. A week ago, while discussing woodworking and shop talk in general with a neighbor (91 years of age -- don't know why that is relevant) he offered me a gift of a model ship kit. When I went to the garage to get it I was overwhelmed. This was a model that is for advanced modelers (so all the brochures say) and cost $400 or so. I am neither advanced, nor would I have spent that kind of money on my first build. I had been looking for something in the beginners class and for maybe $100. To make a long story short, my neighbor friend insisted I take it and give it a try; nothing ventured nothing gained he said, and "what's the worst that can happen? " Having no answer to that question, and with encouragement from various members herein, I have commenced my build. I first decided I would jury rig a vise from one I had for my 15" drill press. I replaced the jaws with some soft wood I took from a wooden yardstick. Works pretty well but I think it'll eventually be replaced by something more versatile. My wife (who is a pattern maker and has worked in electronics assembly) and I spent a few days just reading the instructions, looking at the step by step pictures and then identifying and labeling each and every precut part. Next step was popping out these parts from their sheets. I found they didn't pop very easily, and not wanting to bust any, I took the precaution of sort of cutting them fully through the sheets using a very small artist's palate knife (super thin blade and dull edge). Once I'd scored through the cuts, the parts popped out easily. Time consuming but effective. I've popped out only enough parts to lay the false keel, attach the ribs (frames), stiffeners and lower deck beams, and sanded them pretty well. I want to finish sanding with 320 grit, but I wonder if, for these parts, most of which won't be visible, if this is overkill. I have dry assembled the parts just so I will be fully aware of where things go before I do anything drastic with glue. I plan to use carpenters glue on these parts. I've also put in a supply of CA glue for future use. The instructions suggest that since half the hull will remain open, a more finished look will be had by staining and varnishing these parts before gluing. I am going to use Minwax's pretinted walnut/urethane for this. I'll test it out first on scrap. Any better suggestions? I wanted varnish but did not want to try tinting varnish myself (read here that it can be tricky), so for these I think urethane will be OK. Varnishing parts prior to assembly gives rise to how to do it efficiently and as quickly as practical. My plan is to build a little painting enclosure out of a cardboard box with a dowel run through it. I will stick a sewing pin into each part's edge and use that to hold the part while I paint it. Then I'll hang it from the dowel with something like dental floss or thread. So that's where I'm at now. I know I'll have lots of questions in the coming days, weeks, and months. I am hoping to finish this build before my friend who gave it to me passes away. He is 91 as I said, and his doctor gave him just a few months to live almost a year ago. I'm sure he would be saying, "don't worry about me; take your time and do the best you can. Everything you do will give you experience." So I will take that unspoken advice. Attached are photos I have taken and I will continue to document the build with photos. I am using a Nikon P80. coxswain 1 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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