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_SalD_

Phantom by _SalD_ - FINISHED - 1/8" scale

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Hello all,

 

I am new to this website and also to model ship building.  I have built other types of models in the past and have always wanted to try a wooden ship.  I've been putting it off for a number of years now but have finally decided to bite the bullet and give it a try.  After researching the different types of ship models, solid hull, POB, POF, (and keeping my ego in check) I decided on the entry level, solid hull 'Phantom' by Model Shipways.  I've read a number of the 'Phantom' build logs and have found them to be ever interesting.  I've downloaded, printed, and read Chuck Passaro's guide for this kit and hope that together we can build something that somewhat resembles the picture on the box.

 

Day 1: Received kit, took inventory and everything in there, a good start.

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Day 2:  Using an x-acto knife I cut out the hull profile and station templates.  I wasn't sure if I should leave the line or cut the line off the template; I went with removing the line.  Next I adjusted the ship's profile by sanding the bottom of the hull and removing a portion of the stern.

 

One question I had was why do you need to cut the profile template in half?  To me it makes more sense to leave it as one piece to give you better control of shaping the keel.

 

Next I marked the centerline and offset that line a 1/16" on both sides to mark the keel.  It took me a while to decide where to mark the centerline because I realized that this line needs to continue all the way around to the deck.  After trying a few different locations I picked the one that visually appeared to line up along the center of both the top and bottom of the hull.

 

I should probably mention here, like so many others have pointed out, that these drawings and templates are, as we say in the profession, N.T.S. ( not to scale).  Being a structural engineer and working with scaled drawings everyday these drawings are not at an 1/8" per foot. 

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Thanks for commenting patrickmil.

 

 

Day 3:  Well, I've read Mr. Passaro's guide and the directions that came with the kit for about the fifth time trying to work up enough nerve to start carving.  Finally started reducing the keel width and carving the hull at station 5.  Slow going, first time jitters, don't want to remove more wood than I'm supposed to.  Using 1/4" wide wood chisel and x-acto knife.

 

Carving continues. Getting more confident.  Finished rough carving from station 5 to bow.

 

D.W.

 

 

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Great work so far. One of the benefits of a painted and coppered hull is you can use wood filler if you do accidentally take off too much wood.  :D

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Day 4: Started carving from station 5 to stern.  Actually starting to enjoy this.  Need to remember to keep chisel sharpened.

 

Finished rough craving and sanded hull.  Came out better than expected.  Have one dent but nothing real noticeable, may try filler to even it out.

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Good start, Doc. I think the profile template is recommended in 2 pieces so it can fit the hull - left intact you need to be near final shape before it fits over the bow and stern.

 

I like this kit - my boys each have one, but not much interest yet.

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Sal, that's looking great. I don't see the dent you've mentioned at all so it may just be you're being too critical. Everybody on this forum is guilty of that. I'm glad you're having fun with this. It's my favorite past time and allows me to tune out the rest of the world.

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Wayne,

 

Thanks for following my build and for the comments.  I actually made a second copy of the ships profile template so I had one that was in two pieces and one that was whole.  I used the two pieces like you said to get the rough shape of the hull and then used the one piece profile to make sure the bottom of the hull was level with the correct profile.

 

And don't give up on the boys, it only took me 63 years to start my first wooden ship.

 

 

Patrick,

 

Thanks for the encouragement. As far as the dent goes maybe I should just stop looking at the ship through my visor magnifier.  It looks perfect without them.

 

Sal

 

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Sal, I've taught myself to look at my ships the way others (who don't do modeling) look at them. You've done an excellent job so far. I can't wait to see more.

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Had a productive weekend.  I cut the 'step' in at the top of the hull, laid out and installed the stem, stern post and keel and craved the rudder.

 

To layout out the location of the 'step' I used my drafting compass.  I set the distance between the pivot point of the compass and the lead to 1/8".  Then by resting the compass's point on top of the bulwarks and using the bulwarks as a guide I was able to scribe a line completely around the ship's hull 1/8" down.  I tried craving the 'step' as described in Chuck's practicum but found it to be too labor intensive.  So I gave up the knife and tried my dremel.  (have the toys, might as well use them)  I used a sanding drum and my old drafting metal erasure shield as a guide so I wouldn't remove any material below the line. As I went I kept checking the width of the 'step' with my dividers.  Used an emery board to get the 'step' to its correct width and depth.

 

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Next I laid out the stem as described in the practicum on paper to get the proper angle to glue the 1/8" wood strips to and to form a template I could later use to trace on the wood strips.  Once the strips were glued and dried I traced the stem on the strips and cut it out.  The keel I cut the little lip at the end and scarfed a joint between the stem and keel.  The stern post was fairly easy.  After gluing everything in place and letting it dry I used some filler to fill in the gaps. 

 

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For the rudder, instead of gluing three pieces of the 1/8" wood strips together as in the practicum,  I used the 1/16" x 1/2" stock.  I cut two pieces approximately 2" long and glued them together to make one piece 1/8" thick x 1/2" wide.  I then printed out a copy of the rudder from the plans to use as a template. Used the dremel to get a rough shape and then used files an the x-acto knife to get the finished shape. Used sandpaper to round the front edge and taper the sides.  Finally I drilled the hole in the hull and did a test fit.

 

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Also spend a little time making my own waterline marking jig.

 

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Thinning the bulwarks.

 

I decided to deviate from Chuck’s practicum on coppering the hull prior to thinning the bulwarks for a couple of reasons.  One, I thought I might damage the copper while handling the boat as I worked on the bulwarks and two, I figured that if I screwed up the bulwarks really bad I wouldn't need to spend all that time coppering the bottom of the hull.

 

I used the drum sander on my dremel to remove the majority of the extra material. I laid the erasure shield on the deck so I wouldn't cut into it. I then used an emery board and sandpaper to thin them down to about 3/64”.  I also squared up the corners at mid ship and carved out the stern and bow areas.  I also sanded the deck to its correct profile.  

 

For all the youngsters out there, an erasure shield (see photo) was used on engineering drawings done by hand, in pencil, when you wanted to erase only a small portion of a line. You would place one of the slots over the line you wanted gone and the shield would keep the adjacent lines from being erased.

 

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Looking really good there sir! Hope you don't mind me going over some of your steps on my own project. I too was considering using my Dremel rather than carving by hand. Do you have a jig/stand of some sort you're using to hold the tool steady, or free-handing it?

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Sal, nice job on the bulwarks!!! You've made me want to dig out my erasure shield. I'm only in my thirties but learned to draft by hand rather than computer. It's always been more pleasurable to draw by hand than machine.

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Jeff,

 

I have a flex shaft extension on my dremel.  It gives you a lot more control.  The picture below is my setup.  I made a stand for the dremel from an old closet rod from one of those portable wardrobes that self destructed.  I clamped the rod to the drafting table and used j-hooks held on with hose clamps to hold the dremel up.  It works well but you need to be careful.  I use it at very low speed (5 or 6) and don’t use a lot of pressure. The wood is very soft and comes off easy.   And make sure you use something to protect the areas you don’t want to remove. I usually practice on a scrap piece of wood first.

 

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Patrick,

 

Cad has certainly made drafting more efficient but the drawings have lost all their character.  We used to have some real artists that could produce gorgeous drawings that had feeling.  Now everything is so antiseptic, too sterile.   

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Makes sense, and I've also got a flex tool that will be put to good use. Thanks for the note on the slow speed. While I can definitely not call myself an artist, I can recall the looks from the nice little coeds as I went banging toward my drafting classes with my 36" T-square sheathed in my backpack strap. Isometrics, perpective drawings, lines of perspective...its all coming back. The best part for me was that it all seemed to 'make sense' to an engineering brain while still requiring great creativity. 

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Couple questions

 

Before starting the copper I need to scribe the waterline along the hull.  To do this I wanted to build the Launching Ways that the model is displayed on to get its correct position.  Now, if I build the Launching Ways per the directions included in the kit the angle of the Launching Ways will be approximately 3 degrees, which will be the angle that the keel will sit at.  However, if I measure the angle of the keel from the plans that also came with the kit, that angle measures 4.5 degrees.

 

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                                                    My cad drawing of Launching Ways

 

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                                                            Ship profile from plans

 

Now I assume that the waterline on the ship should be horizontal when you have the ship on the display.  Yes? No? Doesn’t matter?  If so, do I build the Launching Ways per the kit’s directions and use that angle (3 degrees) to scribe my waterline or do I use the angle from the plans (4.5 degrees) and build the Launching Ways to that angle?

 

I’m leaning towards using the angle from the plans (4.5 degrees) and reworking the Launching Ways, unless that’s totally wrong.

 

Second question. I was planning ahead and I've noticed that the angles of the two masts are not quite the same.  I don’t know if I’m being too precise here or are the two masts just parallel to each other?

 

Thanks

 

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Sal, oftentimes the masts will have a different rake (angle) from one another. Most of the time it's actually been purposely designed that way. In the past when marking my waterline I've propped up the boat in such a way so that the waterline is perfectly level and parallel with the surface my marking tool is going to slide on. The waterline may or may not be intended to sit perfectly level while on the launch way. That's just my two cents...

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Hi, sal - good question!  In this case, it appears that the ship sat lower at the stern than the bow - not at all uncommon for these types.  Increased speed, supposedly, as well as providing the rudder more bite and increased stability.

 

The launch ways are angled to allow the ship to slide into the water - think of them in relation to the ground and the keel is parallel to the ways. 

 

The waterline is in reference to the way the ship will set in the water and will not match the slant of the ways.  In the water, the stern would be lower, hence that 4.5 degree angle as opposed to the ways.  They are really two totally different and unrelated sets of angles.

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Wayne, Patrick

 

Thanks for the answers.

 

So I will mark the waterline on the hull using the cradle I made that keeps the keel at roughly the slope shown on the plans (4.5 d.) and use the kit plans to build the launch ways (3 d.) and in this case when the ship is displayed on the launch ways the waterline will not be horizontal.   I can live with that.

 

Thanks again.

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Started working on the launching ways.  Cut all the pieces and stained them. Made up a little jig to set the cross timbers.

 

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Also painted the hull and marked the waterline. Almost ready to copper the hull. I wanted to finish the launching ways first so I could locate and drill the holes in the keel for the mounting pins.

 

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Sal, the launch ways look great! I'm looking forward to seeing some copper on your hull.

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Nils, thank you.  I'm really enjoying this and I need to thank my wife in part for finally starting.  We have recently become empty nesters as my youngest daughter is now a freshmen in college.  My wife told me to stop bothering her and get a hobby, so here I am.

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Finished the Launching Ways.  Took a few liberties with the ground way support stacks. I extended the bottom timbers and added an additional timber at the top.  As a structural engineer it appeared that they needed to distribute the load more and to keep the ground way rails from moving laterally. Hope that's not against the rules.

 

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I guess I have no more excuses now, I'll have to start coppering the hull.

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 Hope that's not against the rules.

 

It's only against the rules if you're not having a good time. Improving on your kit is always for the best as these kits are only vague representations of the real thing. The launch way is stunning. That is outstanding work Sal.

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Thanks Patrick, I really appreciate the support from everyone.  When it stops being fun it turns into work and I don't need anymore of that. 

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Nils, thank you.  I'm really enjoying this and I need to thank my wife in part for finally starting.  We have recently become empty nesters as my youngest daughter is now a freshmen in college.  My wife told me to stop bothering her and get a hobby, so here I am.

 

 

You have a wise wife Sal,

 

and you made a good and right decision..

Have fun with this Hobby, it keeps those old brain cells on challenge mode

 

Nils

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'A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.'

 

The journey begins....

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...and Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers out there.

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