Jump to content

USF Essex by Cookster - 1:48, 1814 Configuration, POB and POF (first scratchbuild)

Recommended Posts

Mike, first off I admire your work and skills very much.

I assume you're aware I'm lofting these plans myself from several references.  To be honest I don't trust myself, lol.  I've spent many hours drawing and redrawing the head of Essex.  I'm at the point where I'm fairly certain (90%) that my head details are correct.  BUT, if I run into a problem and I've drilled the gammoning holes in the wrong place, I'm screwed.


Would you agree with my assessment or am I being TOO cautious?  I haven't glued the cants on yet so I can still drill them on a drill press now very easily, if I want to.

You can see below I want the gammoning holes in the middle of the cheeks area, and if for some reason I have errors in my lofting I don't find until I actually build the head, well, you can see where this is going.


So that's my reasoning.  But you have caused me to take pause and reconsider - damnit....😝




Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 11/2/2020 at 7:52 PM, cookster said:

Would you agree with my assessment or am I being TOO cautious? 

Sooner or later you will have to know where you are going to place those gammoning holes. Might be a good idea to figure it out now and commit to doing it while it is easier to accomplish.



Edited by Stuntflyer
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Scott, I'm trying DraftSight CAD program.  I used TurboCad many years ago and didn't like it back then, not sure if I would now or not.  DraftSight looks a lot like AutoCad (same shortcuts, layout etc) so I feel comfortable using it.  I was able to get Solidworks Educator for free since I'm a member of the EAA (Experimental Aircraft Assoc) so that worked out well!


Frolick, thanks for the dwgs.  I actually have Chapelle's The History of American Sailing Navy so thanks for reminding me that is in there.


Mike, I held of on the gammoning holes, I'll drill them at a later date with my small dremel - no big deal.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well folks, here I am actually installing the cant frames for the last time.  With glue.  For real.  Sorry for the humor, but this has taken so long to get here and so many setbacks - to be actually doing this is a major milestone!  This is version three of the cant's.  One version for issues with my lofting, another version for over aggressive sanding, and now this V.3 which is the final version.  I've also had to remake a frame or 2 here and there for what I'll call *mistakes* and leave it at that. 


I'm getting there but still lots to go.  Also framed my first complete gunport!  The sheer looks nice and and the *fake* rabbet is now finally visible.   There's still more fairing to do on the inside of what you see below.   Using battens to fair is absolutely necessary IMO.  All the bumps and dips show up that way.  Anyway, pics.  I'll post more when I have more frames glued in.

PS - forgive the workbench situation -  it's messy but it's mine.😁

Cheers and thanks for following along!










Link to comment
Share on other sites

Still working on Cant frames, but only a few left to go.  It's getting there.  No major issues yet, I've been rough fairing as I go and so far no goofs on this version.  Hopefully I'll finish them with no major mistakes.  Lofting these was a real learning experience, my shipwright learning curve was huge AND making mistakes early on, but now finally my dwgs of the cants seem fairly accurate - I just need to make sure and leave a little excess material to fair.

I still have to finish lofting the rear cants and then build them, I hope all the experience I gained on the front ones make the rear ones go smooth.  But I get ahead of myself...







Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Welp, believe it or not the front cant frames are finished!  Can't believe I'm actually at this moment!  Also I finally built my overhead gantry, Ed Tosti style.  As per my usual of over building everything, it's over built - but that's OK. It works and is square and solid.

One area of concern I'm not happy about is the cant frames vs hawse hole placement.  I drew and redrew that area and finally thought I'd reached my best compromise between the cants (and Hackett's design of them) and the hawse holes location using Baker and Fox's placement of them from 1809.  After seeing the completed frames and roughly laying out where the holes will punch the cant frames I'm not happy at all.  I will not however be going back and redoing the cants again.  3 times is enough.  No one but the experts will know and at this point if I tear them out again I may loose my mojo and bail again.  Don't want to do that.

So, my shipyard and shipwrights will move on with the build.  I'll show some pics later of the area of concern, right now I'm not going to dwell on it.

Cant frames are 90% faired, they look pretty good now.  Port sills are fair and a temporary deck clamp I installed looked good.  Remember the port side will be planked over so if it looks a little rougher than starboard, it is 😉










And let me introduce my overbuilt Gantry Extreme 3000...  You can also get a view of the build board I made - and more workshop clutter - seems that a theme with me LOL.





Happy Thanksgiving everyone! catch you next time

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I knew there was a ship model in there somewhere....

And thanks for all the likes!


Edit to add: I just ordered a 3d (resin based) printer.  (Black Friday sale!!)  First project(s) will be some 1/48 crew members for fun, then the Indian Figurehead.  Down the road will be carvings n such for the stern - but that will be much later... And of course whatever else I can come up with.  Probably carronades - or at least one for a mold master and cast the the rest.  Not sure on that yet but I'm sure I can come up with plenty of things to try out!






Edited by cookster
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

just a quick update, I'm still working on the square frames.  I also added a deck clamp and fake deck hook.  I say fake because neither this clamp or hook will be seen so I didn't spend the time to make prototypical ones.  For the upper deck I will be framing in protypical fashion.





fake deck clamp and hook for gun deck.  I'll be adding fake beams as well to support the planking.



I also finally started lofting the stern and eventually those pesky rear counter timbers...  Hopefully all that I learned on the front cants will pay off here.  And I'll soon have to decide on what stern arrangement I want to use since no historical data is available for Essex's stern in 1814.  3, 5, 7, 8 windows?  Still don't know yet.


Oh, and I received my new 3d printer so I need to play with that too!



Thanks for the likes and thanks for looking in!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...
  • 7 months later...

Hello everyone, I'm finally back with an update.  It's been a very busy spring and summer, my apologies for not updating regularly.

I have made more progress on Essex, I now have roughly 1/3 of the frames permanently glued in place.  Fairing them is an ongoing process and won't be completed until all the frames are glued in place.

At some point soon I'll be adding more of the "fake" gundeck clamps and beams.  Anyway, a few pics and I'll try and post more as I get more frames added.









Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

well, I'm still adding frames.  Also, I finally got my 3d printer up a running.  I've printed a few things so far only as tests, but so far I'm pleased.


Here's Pirate Cap'n Green Legs in his 1/48th scale glory.  This was just a test (got it from Hero Forge), I do intend to model up a proper US navy figure at some point and print him out.





I also drew up and printed a 12 lb long gun, which Essex did carry at Valparaiso.  My plan is to finish the model ( trunnions and such) then print a master, and make a mold(s) and cast what I need.  



I don't plan to make a separate thread just for 3d printing stuff, but if there winds up being enough interest or questions I may.  It just depends.

I also received the CNC router I ordered a week or so ago, so I'll need to work with that at some point and make some stuff.


Anyway, more build pics.  Till next update....







Gratuitous cannon pic...





Here's the side that will be planked over, I realized I don't show it much.





Edited by cookster
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here's a few more of the tools and some tricks I use.

I print out the deck profiles on cardstock, then use them as template when fairing the frames.  I did not do this on my version 1 of frames and that's one one of the reasons I screwed them up and over sanded.  These patterns really help!



When framing the gunports, I set the sill in it's location, then use a gauge block I cut to place the header.  This way it's accurate every time AND sits square to the sill.



When fairing (sanding) I use these sanding blocks intended for autobody work.  They are great for fairing outside the hull.  Inside is a little trickier, but they can be cut down if that helps.  The 2 round ones you see below were cut from a single block so I could sand the tighter radius as the hull turns.





Oh, and I finally printed the full length deck plan.  That's a 24" rule as a reference.IMG_1933.JPG.e721878c5ed9aba5a3dd1cf5a3c67d63.JPG




Another cannon pic...



Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

very quick update, still working on square frames - but only 7 to go.  yee haw....    Looks like I have rear cants and fashion timbers in my near future, wonder how much trouble I'll have with those....

Thanks for looking in!


PS - if we ever have a messiest workspace/table area contest, I want to enter. I'll win for sure, LOL





Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...