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Bristol Pilot Cutter by michael mott - 1/8 scale (POF)

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As ever, beautiful workmanship Michael, especially the triple block....


Just thinking ahead, I know your intention is to fit radio control & all the associated components to ensure smooth operation. With a 3:1 purchase that's going to require a considerable length of sheet pull and I therefore don't think a standard winchdrum or arm type sailwinch servo is going to fit the bill. However, what will work is a drum type servo that's been 'hacked'.

In essence, what you'll need to do is use a servo like the Hitec 785 (which can be converted to continuous running) coupled with a couple of micro switches to prevent over running. In practice, instead of the servo/winch position being proportional to the transmitter stick, the stick will become a switch, thus when pushed forward the servo runs in one direction and when pulled back the direction reverses with a central stick resulting in the drum not rotating.  Useful sources of information can be found on robot web sites & of course YouTube.


Hope this doesn't confuse & in the meantime carry on with the excellent work!





Edited by Twister
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Every part of this boat is so well done it would be nice to have that “I shrunk the kids” machine to become small enough to sail her yourself. 


As for sail winch I saw a 5 foot boat, with big sails, where the owner used a reversing screwdriver/drill with a torque control for the winch.  I'm sure you'll work something out.



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Thank you all for your kind remarks and for all those who pushed the like button.


I did a little work today on the bracket to hold the main-sheet tackle to the deck.


First some sketches after looking at a few on the web.




the block of brass was 2 inches by 1/2 inch by 7/8th inch. using a 5/16 ball end I roughed out the main block.




Then with files after the rest of the machining got the block to the final shape.




A little more work with finer files and some wet and dry sandpaper then a buff in the dremmel




A pin machined down from some 3/16th with a 2x56 thread for the cap end.




Next the central unit that will be sandwiched between some rubber buffers each side, that the shackle and lower block attach to.





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I had posted this last night but....


Again thanks for all the positive comments and for the likes.


Yesterday I finished up the deck part of the main sheet tackle. first I used some rubber like insulation from some heavy wire.




I slipped about 3/4 of an inch onto some 1/8th inch diameter brass rod and parted it off into some 1/4 inch long sections.




then made the small sliding part after grinding up a form milling cutter. after fitting it up I spent the rest of the day making the two single blocks and fitting them to the deck.




I swung out the boom to finish threading the rope plus I wanted to see how much rope I would need it turned out to be almost 18 feet, with about 1 foot laying on each side of the cockpit as part of that distance.






All I need to do to finish the main sheet control now is to add either a couple of cleats to the deck or to set in some bits and also to fit a proper bit of hardware to the boom.




I have also been looking at the whole way the rudder assembly is fitted and the way it penetrates the deck. The tiller attachment area is a bit small and I don't like the fact that it is fixed.



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I so much enjoy reading of your latest R&D. I take so much useful knowledge from seeing your creative abilities at work.

Thanks for sharing, seeing the parts made as real working models helps to understand the physics of the rig and how it works. From a person the was completely ignorant of anything about ship/boat rigging when 2013 started, I have come a very long way in my understanding. I can only get so much understanding from reading, your build log has given me not just the visual finished product, but the processes of how its made, why its made that way and how it is ultimately used.


A perfect example would be the picture of the block assembly. The one picture where you show the line clearance... I always just thought the opening to have equal distances between the block and sheave, but I now see that the opening is only opened for the line and close on the opposite side. The light bulb went off as to how much stronger this would make a block assembly. The realization of this asymmetry in the horizontal plane of the block assemble was just an example of why I find your build log SO OUTSTANDING.

Please know that your mentorship to so many of us is greatly appreciated. I stopped rigging my pilot boat build as I wish to modify the kit inaccuracies and am watch your masterful work as an online apprenticeship of sorts.


I really like the personalized block brass piece. Such an amazing touch. Every time I leave your log I think, ok what else can Michael do that will be more amazing and without fail I always come back to see a job that just keeps becoming more engrossing. Your build log is like a great novel that comes in installments and one can't wait to see what happens next.


Be well my friend.

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Would love to spend time in your shop learning the underlying techniques and skills you bring to your work!!



pop by anytime Jay the tea kettle is always on.



I can almost imagine myself walking that deck and getting ready to sail.

One of my own little fantasies Bob.



It doesn't seem to matter whether you are working with wood or metal

Sherry I love working with both materials, the beauty of boat models is the variety of materials that one gets to work with.



your build log has given me not just the visual finished product, but the processes of how its made, why its made that way and how it is ultimately used.

Keith thank you for you very nice commentary about my build log. One of the most important things for me is to understand the how and why of what I am making and if my account of what I am making is helpful then the sharing is worth the time it takes. I feel so much more informed from all the amazing builds on this forum that my own knowledge expands every day I log in.


John Thanks for your kind words



they look full scale; until I see your hand in the photo

Ah mark its all smoke and mirrors. Thanks for the compliment.


Today was a fun day I finally finished the main sheet attachment to the boom.


First I did a forging test with some 1/4 inch brass stock I necked down about 3/4 of an inch to about 1/8th leaving a 1/4 inch long full diameter at the end. this was annealed and forged on the railroad anvil four times to flatten out the end.






After seeing that the forging would work for what I needed, a length of 1/4 inch rod was cut to 2 1/2 inch length with the centre necked down to the 1/8th diameter.  both end were then forged to the same shape as the test piece on the railroad track anvil.


after bending the curve into the smaller diameter (if I were to make another I would make it about 1/4 inch shorter) the unit was set up in the vice for drilling. A block of maple the same width as the boom was sandwiched between the ends to support the brass flange while the holes were drilled and then counter-bored to create flats in the slightly tapering flattened flange. The centre hole is 1/8th to allow a brass Chicago screw to replace the pin holding the clew out-haul sheave.




next the hole was reamed to ensure they were aligned.




after clean up.




removing the temporary pin.




fixing the new tackle











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