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Cutty Sark by Luca_B - Artesania Latina - scale 1:84

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Gday all, this will be my second build but first log, wasn't really sure on posting one for the first through my baby steps, seing all the amazing builds her got me a bit intimidated...

I have come to realize from seeing how helpful the input can be from other members, to improve my techniques and general knowledge of the ships, it will be very beneficial for me to post one for this build.


i received this kit as a (very hinted towards) Christmas present and have been upgrading my workspace ever since to accommodate building it




after gluing all the frames into the keel i noticed a kick in the stern, i tried to steam it out best as posible and rasp more off the effected side



starting to glue and nail on the hull planking is an experience seing as this is my first single layer ship, i will be coppering the waterline and painting above so it wont be too bad :)




i purchased copper rudder hinges and 100 copper plates to test from modelshipyard, but am a bit unsure to the exaggerated rivet heads on the plates and am up to sugestions or a correction, also would anyone have what would be closest to correct dimensions for the plates, im unsure that i got the right ones :S





Edited by Luca_B
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A.L. Swift..  Great looking model of Her.  Welcome to the CS fleet!  I believe you are doing the only AL Cutty on the forum;  it'll be watching!  BTW, copper plate dimensions were either 14 or 20 inches in height, by 48 inches in length.  20 inches in height on side and bottom of keel.  14 inches elsewhere..



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Thanks Bob, should help sourcing some plates. any opinions on the exaggerated rivits on the plates or is it more so personal preference? 


to overcome more accuracy issues ive found and purchaced these two books



anyway more work on it this evening, any tips on securing planks inbetween frame spaces for sanding stage? or this pretty much the best way?





Edited by Luca_B
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Warm welcome to CS fleet Luca !!!


I wish you on start, to keep on good precise and clean working as on your first build

As I am almost beginner as you, I can not give you valuable tips for now. I planked in different way, so do not know what to say. Theoretical, your planking way is right way.


About coopering, I bang my head a lot of time how to do that, and also nothing to say for now


Be careful on stage of work you are. It seems you hurry a little, just as I did at the beginning. Mistakes on ribs and bulkheads REFLECT to latter loosing lines of hull and deck, and to enormous problems very hard to successfully correct later (if you do not believe, see my log)


But there is some really valuable tip, if you do not want to jump in swamp as I did: Do not believe to much in instructions, rather believe in your investigation on MSW and internet. Delicate moves, or moves which you are not quite sure they are right, first try then do


There is fun and joy in investigation and research also !!!


Think then ten times about every move, then think another ten times about that move relative to next moves, think continuous about order of moves, and then move forward only one step by step. And remember, this is not race, this is hobby.

Ah yes, if you are even a little ambitious , find somewhere Campbell plans, which are more detailed than Artesania Latina plans, and do not believe in instructions as a Bible book. Take your time, do not hurry, and carefully read very usefull topics on this great site, there is a lot to learn, and many good ideas. And many details of Her Majesty (Lou`s topic)


It will be a pleasure to build our Citty Sark models at the same time and to share ideas, experiences, questions and fun


See you soon



Edited by Nenad M
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You have two books that are excellent for her. As Nenad said, get George F. Campbell's plans from the museum gift shop. They'll ship them to you. They aren't very expensive. You get detailed drawings of just about everything you could possibly want to know about the ship's external features and much of her internal as well. POB construction means her internals will not really be very important to you anyway. Her rig, decorations, layout etc is all in those three precious peices of paper. There's a drawing by Max Millar I think of her showing from her stbd quarter somehwat above her with cutaway views into the hold. It's a pretty good drawing as well though not as much detail can be gleaned from it as from the Campbell drawings. Lou mentioned some drawings from out his way, I have yet to see them or order them. I intend on it though before I start another CS. (I think I'm sick, I only want to build CS....) Try to find a copy of Basil Lubbock's Log of the Cutty Sark. It's one of the best books out there about the ship. It is filled with all sorts of details about her construction and her time at sea during her career until she ended up as a training ship on the Thames at the nautical college. Of course the internet is good for research as well. Plus post here. We'll all do our best to answer any questions you may have about her. :)

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Thanks Bugra also Thanks Daniel will look at getting a set of those plans, And Nenad, i see what you mean with with the cut of the stern, i spent a while investigating what way to do it but ended up using the keel upright angle and cut the block flush to the existing angle, there will probably be some adjustments to molds and fittings in the future but i think it should be alright.


anyway back to planking! its been pretty smooth sailing so far, a couple weak spots in a couple strips but nothing too major.



to plank with minimal gaps im chamfering the planks with my dremmel tool



also does anyone have a good shot of the underside of the actual ship? the pictures in the book seems to show a stepped transition where as im thinking it would be molded smooth into the false keel, any suggestions?

heres what i mean





Edited by Luca_B
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ive found some pictures and they seem to say its more an acute angle going into the keel rather than smooth transition or the rough angle the plans indicate. also does anyone have a good source for copper plates that resemble these with the flush rivets rather than the exaggerated ones i have? needs to ship to Aus.



Edited by Luca_B
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That problem with soft transition to the bow and stern is exactly what I wrote about, mentioning thinking forward


If you had look forward to the position where you have to be after planking, you ll probably see that you MUST adapt end of planking strips , for instance, as on this picture.




In opposite, happy sanding is in front of you. Oh, yes, and a lot of putty


But, if you see that right on time, next question arise immediately - you could not use nails to fix them (thin edges of strips), and you also must fold strip little more on last rib before bow/stern, so some "corners" appear... and it needs some extra ribs to add to avoid corners


I do not see clearly your instructions, have you on the next step to put some like false keel ? If it is so, problem is little bit smaller, but still exist


If you plan to put second planking layer with veneer, that will cover all hills and holes after putty and sanding


@Dognut in his topic ( http://modelshipworld.com/index.php?/topic/2842-cutty-sark-by-dognut-constructo-scale-1115-1869-first-build/) run in the same problem, and it is a pitty he didnt post a while, so I do not know answer how he resolved this problem

Dremmel will help, anyway

For second question, there is maybe answer in Campbell plans (on scale, of course) in this segment




Anyway, keep on going, there is no mess you can not clean up on harder or easier way. And cleaning a mess is also big joy and fun, when you succeed and see results

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Nenad, the below waterline finish isnt realy critical with my build as i plan to copper plate it and right now the timber is set up in a way i could of done either of the two options, the keel sits nicely in the gap there and is the same width as the ply keel and the rasped ends+planks.

Edited by Luca_B
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That connection you refer to at the keel is where these discussions of "rabbet" and "Garboard strake" come in. The rabbet is the groove cut in the keel, stem and sternpost to accept the garboard strake (or the butt ends on the stem and hood ends on the sternpost). That part where Nenad says you have to cut of the corner of the plank so that the plank fits smoothly.... Well in a real construction you would not cut off the planking. I think he mentions having a thin plank and difficult to pin becuase it's so thin. That is exactly why you cut a rabbet. Instead of removing the material from the plank, you remove it from the keel or stem/stern posts. The plank should remain square. The garboard strake is the first plank up against the keel followed by what are called the first board and second board. Those are the next two planking strakes in the hull.  Here is a link to a page that shows how odd the shape of the keel and garboard  planks are. They mesh together perfectly though so that each can be bolted together and kept tight.



Here is a site with a cross section of our lady's keel.



Scroll down and you'll see a cross section of her keel. It's quite clear how the keel rabbet works once you look at the pictures.


As for the stem and stern rabbets.....


Here is a page from Duck trap. They've got a lot of good stuff. If you take a look at the information on this page, you'll see that the stem rabbet transisions into the keel rabbet then into the stern rabbet. It's one long groove running from the top of the stempost down the stem, along the keel and back up the sternpost. Along the keel, the plank rests along it's length in the rabbet. On the stem and sternpost, the plank ends (known as hood and butt ends) rest in the rabbet.




In really high quality ship construction, Cutty Sark included, the ends of each individual plank were capped with a metal cap before being installed. This kept water out of the endgrain of the plank. I can't imagine anyone modeling these caps though.


I hope this little tidbit of information has helped you understand exactly what it is you're doing.


One last book that may help out is this one:



It should clear up all wood ship construction questions anyone may have.

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Thanks Daniel, had a look through and will take note on my other builds. I will probably get a really nice high quality kit next, or even scratch build and implement all proper building techniques possible on a scale model.

the only reason ive done it this way on my ship is because that's how the instructions specify it and i don't really want to stray from them too much due to future fittings they have worked to fit it that way.


Edited by Luca_B
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i know some will probably be cringing at my planking method used here, not using stealers or tapered planks for the ends but not much will be seen after paint and copper plating is done. that being said ive heard copper plating can be quite a task, any tips before i jump in head first?

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Looks good mate. I went for 2b on all sides, came up nice, it's certainly a fine balance getting your decking to your liking, certainly pays to do some testing like you have. Ollie


thanks Ollie, yeah i think i will probably keep using it.

how did it hold up when you sealed it? any leaching? and what did you use an oil or varnish?




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Luca;  A. Latina makes some fabulous kits, but they are not meant to be exact scale models of the real ship.  The Latina kits are made with many exotic woods that would never be used on the real ship, and it would be a shame to cover up the wood with paint and copper.  However, if you want to make an accurate representation of the C.S., that's exactly what you'll have to do.  My 40+ year old billings kit came with many strips of mahagony for planking, but I opted to purchase basswood, as the texture scales better, the wood is more flexible, and it's much cheaper. 

If I owned the A.L. Cutty, I would probably just build her right out of the box, following A.L.'s directions to the letter.  I would have a fine, beautiful model of Her, but it wouldn't be exactly accurate.  This is where you should decide either kit, or scale, or a compromise.  If you choose A.L, I wouldn't worry about copper or paint.  If you choose an exact replica, purchase one good set of plans (Campbell's) and take all of your serious measurements from them, and shape any inaccuracies from your kit accordingly. 


Above all, remember this is a hobby, it's fun, a stress reliever, (not a stress causer), and your build is YOUR build, and you can do what you want, just as long as it makes you happy!  Progress looks excellent, BTW... :10_1_10:



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Thanks Bob, yeah it is a pretty nice kit but im afraid my planking skills aren't quite up to a single planking standard as of yet :S

that's the main reason for the plating and paint, also i wanted to try my hand at coppering seeing just how much 'FUN' everyone has doing it.

looking back i probably should have sourced a cheaper timber for the hull and used the nice stuff for a scratch build, actually kicking myself i didn't now...

I am having lots of fun putting this one together so ill keep hammering on, looking forward to some deck work next week! 

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... actually kicking myself i didn't now...




To add to this :  ... actually kicking myself I realise that I could do EVERYTHING so much precise, clean, correct and better ... ( Thanks to Bob who`s work illuminates that road to me )


That impatience we all have sometime, to come as soon as possible to visible results ........ 


I think that impatience is often with kit builders than with scratch. There is always some piece next in line sticking out of the box, challenging and baiting you, and order of pieces in box creates illusion of easiness of whole work. And you gain the impression that there is only set of  LEGO in front of you





The one and only safe on this road is - work on something about month, and rework on same position another two, trying to correct what can be corrected.


And marked spot on the wall to bang your head every time you decide to rush


And, of course, a big laughing donkey picture near that mark, to remember you what are you exactly doing


Try to imagine - all that white panels on both inside bulwarks, near 70 of them 1 x 9 mm laying in little trench, each sunken in 5 x 11 mm "teak" panel, every panel separated with little 1 x 5 mm pillar. and ALL of them had traces of glue, putty and WRONG layer of sadoline. ALL of them must be cleaned from glue, putty and sadoline to prepare surface to correct teak acrylic colour !!!! Take "dentist" tools, magnifier, rasps 2 mm wide and enjoy yourself. That is my entertainment almost a week. I dont  wish you that joy




Keep good working and posting, pls

Edited by Nenad M
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