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Amerigo Vespucci by laps - Panart - 1:84

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Time to re-construct my build log of Panart's Amerigo Vespucci 1:84. I still have all the photos I've taken during the build so far but unfortunately I do not have all the text I had written for the old build log. So this log will start with a summary of the build until present stage. All my photos can be found here:


Photo album


It all started around 3 years ago. I began with some of the small boats as I didn't had room to start on the main hull. However, here I will start with the main hull.


Internal framework



To be continued...


/Lars Peter




Edited by laps
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Thank you for your comments, guys. :)


I'm very busy at work at the moment so the work on the AV continues very slowly. So it seems to be a good opportunity to re-build part of my old build log.


With the internal framwork in place and placement of mounting nuts it was time to start the planking job. I went per instructions and used balsa strips for the first planking. Some people choose to discarge the balsa but I think it was very nice to work with - easy to bend and cut. But you have to be aware that it is very soft and damages easily.




After the first planking was finished I did a light sanding (it was fast work) and filled any cracks and dips with car body filler. And then more sanding (not so fast this time around).




I then had the option of either covering the hull with some kind of cloth in replacement of a second layer of planking. I didn't have the guts to use the cloth so I used lime strips glued on with contact glue to avoid nail holes. Today, I would probably have covered the hull with fiber glass. It is quite easy do do and provide and absolutely smooth and hard surface for the paint.




Then some more sanding and filling  until I was satisfied with the finish. Finally, the hull was primed.




/Lars Peter





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I was a bit of sequence in my last post.


Actually, boefore I could finish the planking and paint the hull, I had to do a bit of work on the decks (actually quite a bit. I did not follow the sequence given by the instructions here.


Before the quarter deck and the fore deck cut be fitted I needed to plank some of the main deck and add the internal walls. on the main deck. All deck were planked with walnut strips and varnished. They may be too dark to resemble the real ship but I think it looks nice (I like dark wood).




The internal walls didn't quite fit and some had to be extended before they matched the fore deck. Also, pieces of wood were glued to the deck to support the thin plywood walls that didn't want to be straight at all.




The bulkwarks need to be planked inside and painted before the remaining main deck could be laid.




The internal wall under the quarter deck was made and glued in place and the quarter deck could be added.




And the fore deck




Once all this was completed the outside planking was finished.


/Lars Peter




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  • 4 weeks later...

Time to do a bit more re-construction of this build log. Next up was to start fitting the top port hole patterns. This task was not without problems. Firstly, the patterns didn't fit the hull very well so I had to do a few mods in some places. Secondly, I made a major error way back when I fitted the frames resulting in a slightly dip in the middle (the deck and port hole patterns have to follow a straight line). This could have been avoided if Panart had chosen to include full scale plan drawings in the kit. Nothing I can do about it except live with it :angry:




In the last picture you can clearly see the mistake I made. The patterns were supposed to follow the blue line.




Holes for port hole were drilled and the square port holes were painted blak before gluing the patterns into place. Finally, the patterns were painted.


/Lars Peter

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A walnut trim was pre-bended and glued on just below the top patterns.




Port hole pattern were also supplied for the two lower rows of port holes. However, I choosed not to use them bacause the were really difficult to fit.




Instead I used them as a guide for drilling the holes for the port holes.




The hull was now basically finished and ready for painting after a final light sanding. First the top half was painted white. Then the water line was painted red. On most models of AV the hull below the waterline is painted either white or black. The real ship is red (brown) below the waterline and I choosed to go that way.




Masking tape was used to define the black bands and this is the final result after painting.




The port holes were glued in place and glazing added. According to the real ship the port holes should have been the same colour as the hull. But I was afraid that it made placing the glazing very difficult so they were left unpainted (and brass is also nice).




The square port hole covers were shaped and also left unpainted before fixing in place.




Lars Peter




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Hi Lars,You are doing a great job without scale plans,I also have this kit and have been told the scale plans are now 9 sheets instead of 15, been told they are in the mail from supplier, its only taken a year so far.I will also use the planking way as you have. your info will be very helpful as I follow your blog.thanks Ed

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This part was a bit of a pain to make and attach to the hull. First I had to cut holes in the hull for the doors and plank the area beneath the trim piece easy enough.



Next up was to prepare the balcony floor. It conmsisted of a piece of laser cut ply that fitted ok around the hul. The grating (also ply) were painted and glued in place. However, the cast metal supports for the balcony were a pain. The casting was at a very poor quality and basically not two were alike. I cleaned them up the best I could and painted them white.




Test fitting and gluing the balcony floor in place went ok.




Here I noticed that some of the port holes below the balcony were in the wrong place and would interfere with the balcony supports. So a bit of work went in to closing up the holes and making new ones.




Here the supports are glued in place and I had begun on the vertical supports for the hand rail.




Here the photo etched "mesh" are in place and decorate pieces are added to hide the joints between the mesh.




The laser cut mahogany hand rail very glued in place, sanded and varnished (very fragile peice). The ship's name was glued in place.




Finally, a half round piece of Evergreen styrene was glued to the edge of the balcony floor and painted gold. The balcony was now finished. Also, the decorative casting below the balcony was cleaned up, painted where necessary and glued in place with epoxy.




/Lars Peter



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Deck mouldings


After planking the decks had finished it was time to consider the mouldings along the edges. They came with the kit as laser cut plywood. I was worried about using them because it was probably difficult to achieve a uniform stain especially along the ugle plywood egdes. So I orded some 2 mm walnut sheets and started cutting my own mouldings.


Here the dry fit is in progress.



You may notice that the colour of the walnut mouldings is quite different from the deck colour. I varnished a piece to see whether it was possible to achieve the same colour as the deck - it was not.




So I had to rely on walnut stain instead. The corner pieces were carved from a solid piece of walnut and glued in place.




With all the pieces glued in place a coat of walnut stain was applied. At first I didn't like the much darker colour but someone here at MSW mentioned that it added a nice contrast to the deck colour. Much later I agree on this.




/Lars Peter








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Deck details


The number of items that goes on the dek is huge (basically I hadn't seen any other models with this many parts). I will large present this huge job in photos and only mention things when I had to deviate from the instruction to solve any problems.


Anchor davits and anchor locks



I had to shorten the two small lockers on each side of the deck, obviously because I cut the entry ways in the wrong place :angry:



One of four stairs





The chimney required a bit of work. The lasercut pieces to form the box around the bottom of the chimney didn't fit.



I filled the cracks, sanded and painted - the end results wasn't too bad.



Here the chimney is glued in place together with the assembled crane hoist. The latter took hours to make



And finally a photo of the fore deck with more pieces in place. The open hatch cover is not yet glued because it may interfere with the rigging job later on.



/Lars Peter




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Deck houses I


I do not have pictures of all steps in the construction of the three deck houses. However, there are a few things I would like to point out.


This deck house goes on the quarter deck. It consists of a plywood frame and around a million pieces of mahogany - fun thing to make.



When fitting the ladders, I realized that the stairs were to wide.



So I shortened the step and sanded down the sides of the ladders - that did the trick.



Here is the finsihed deck house in place.



There is a small deck house on the main deck. Here it is before painting.



And here it is in place on the main deck.



/Lars Peter



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Deck houses II


The last deck house which goes on the fore deck proved to be the greatest challenge so far with this build.


Basic framwork



Outer walls added and painted



The wheel house roof is made up from a moulded piece of acrylic. The photo etched window frames are then glued on the moulded piece.



However, as you can see from the next photo it did not fit very well.



When I was packing things to move to my new house I accidental dropped the deck house on the floor and all the photo etched pieces was flying in all direction. Much later I decided to reconstruct the roof to make a better fit. I discarded to moulding - only re-used the slanted piece in the middle. I then decided to try out my soldering skills to make the window framing and then add glazing later. This was to put it mildly a pain in **** to make. Basically, when to solder two peices together to other pices came apart because of the heating. However, in the end I managed to solder everything to create one piece.



It fitted much better.



More soldering.



And at last the framing was complete.



Any gaps were filled with car body filler which is very hard and easy to sand.



After sanding and painting it did not look too bad.



Glazing was put in and the roof was glued to the deck house.



Here the deck house in glued in place on the foredeck together with more stuff.



/Lars Peter



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I just looked through the forum and found your beautiful model. It looks great!


Actually I am building the same model, based on the same kit. It seems that your kit is younger than mine, some parts obviously have changed a bit.

Will follow your log with interest.


Regards Joachim

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Thank you for your kind comments guys. I'm almost done with the re-construction of my build log.


I have done quite a bit since the crash. The main mast is completed and glued into place. I have done the first spar for the main mast and is working on number two. It is all time consuming work as I have to wait for glue and paint to dry quite often.


But first we need to finish the update of the old log.


Construction of crane








/Lars Peter




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Construction of masts



The mast platforms were all cut out from plywood and glued to the photo etched platform tops. I had to do this because the laser cut kit supplied pieces didn't fit the photo etched pieces.




Fore mast dry assembled



Fore mast painted



Adding futtock straps



I later realized (after I finished these on all three masts) that I used the wrong size turn-buckles. This meant that I had to strip some of the shroud rigging and replace them with the correct size. So far I have done this on the main mast.


Fore mast details



Had to make a new piece here as well because the kit supplied piece didn't fit.




Replacement of turn-buckles



/Lars Peter



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New update - main mast


The main mast is complete and has now been glued in place with epoxy. I have done all the metal work for tying the shrouds. These consist of a turn-buckle, two rings and a brass strap - all soldered. Finally, they were painted white. I simplified the paint job in contrast to the real ship.




Here is the first strap glued and pinned in place on the hull. The instructions do not mention anything about the distance between the shrouds so I use the photos from the instructions as a guide. I have ordered some more nails for fastening the remaining straps as my brass nails are too big.




Main yard


The main yard (330 mm) is finished at glued in place and secured with a chain. All yards follow the same principle of construction: Tapering and shaping the ends on the lathe. Then the ochre paint is applied before the rings are glued in place. The kit supplies the rings as laser cut ply wood. I would have liked to use these but the laser cutting is done very poorly so you end up with a V-shaped cut. They are very thin so it is impossible to sand the inside to achieve a straight edge. Instead I made the rings from plastic strips glued around the yards with CA. This can only be done after painting and is very difficult. The ochre paint is acrylic and not very strong so sometime it peals of. Even after re-painting these spots it is not possible to achieve a nice paint finish. After the rings have been installed I put masking tape on each side of the rings, sand them smooth and fill any gaps before applying a coat of white. It looks decent now (at least from a distance).


Applying rings to second yard



Some photos of the main yard in place



There are five yards on each mast so this is going to take a while.


/Lars Peter


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  • 2 weeks later...

The rigging of my AV continues to frustrate me because of the poor instructions. Basically, it comes down to study the photos in the instructions booklets and try to figure out what's going on. The problem here is that the photos seem to have been taken during various stages of the construction so it is really difficult to know what's right and wrong. Details of the yards are only provided for the mizzen mast. Judging from the photos the yards for the main mast seem to be slightly different regarding the various fittings. I have almost completed the second yard for the main mast but decided to stop that for now. It will be easy to figure out how many eyelets, blocks etc. that will go on each mast if I build them together with the work on the running rigging later on.




So it is basically back to doing shrouds and ratlines. All the main shrouds have been tied in place and I have started doing the ratlines. Looking at photos of the real AV, it seems like iron bars have replaced every fifth ratline. I will not do that but have fitted only the two bottom bars.




I thought it would be a good idea to finish the fore and mizzen mast so these can be put in place. You may recall that I had to remove the topmast shrouds on all the mast to replace the turnbuckles for smaller ones. So I have started redoing these on the foremast. So more shrouds and ratlines.




Once the fore mast has been glued in place, I will continue with the mizzen mast and and the standing rigging before work continues on the yards and running rigging far into the future.


/Lars Peter

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