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Bomb Vessel Granado, 1742 - Cross Section - 1:48 scale by Grant Dale - Finished

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This will be my first full scratch build. I have chosen the Bomb Vessel Granado Cross Section as an introduction to scratch building as it has all of the components of a scratch build while offering something a little bit ‘unusual’ at the same time. This build is also a ‘group’ build as my very good friend Mobbsie in the UK has agreed to do this in tandem with me, and to make it a truly international build, we are also joined by Jack Panzeca from Texas.  While we will all maintain individual build logs, we will progress at a common (slow) pace and will therefore be able to help each other through any tricky bits.


Plans are by Jeff Staudt, based on the drawings by Peter Goodwin in the Anatomy of the Ship series, and also original drawings by Thomas Slade.  The plans are available through the Model Ship Builder (MSB) forum.  Although this is my first scratch build, I have to say that the plans/drawings by Jeff look to be first class.




We will also be guided by the build logs of several skilled modellers who have trodden this path before us.  I would like to pay tribute here to the excellent logs of Rusty, whose log of his 1:24 scale build is available here at MSW, and also of Mike41, who built the prototype model over on MSB.


We will be using timber from Jeff Hayes at Hobbymill, and have chosen a selection of timbers that will allow us to “paint with wood”.  My thanks to Jeff for his patience and guidance in helping me to put together the final timbering package.  Of course, as you would expect, the timber from Jeff is just gorgeous.


Here’s a picture of the overall wood package:




And here is one showing more clearly some of the colours that we have available through these timbers:




On with the show:

Framing Jig

We decided to start by constructing the Framing Jig - mainly because Mobbsie “cheated” by making his up earlier while testing out his new toys.  ;)  It is fairly straight forward to make - the base is 12mm ply that I had lying around, while the top is 3mm “aircraft grade” birch plywood (also spare stock I had lying around). The two pieces were cut to size and then clamped together while 10mm holes were drilled to take the adjusting bolts.  The pattern for the jig was then printed on sticky label paper and applied to the top, and the inside cut out on the scroll saw. After cutting on the scroll saw, the frame notches were finessed to size with a file, using a piece of 1/4” stock (framing stock) to test for a comfortable fit. The top and bottom were then temporarily joined with the bolts and the centreline transferred from the top piece to the base.  The centreline was scribed into the base and then drawn over with a pencil.  Additional lines were drawn parallel to this 1/8” either side to aid in locating the keel/keel supports.  Lines were also drawn across the base board to denote the ends of the frames. In the following pictures, you may notice a partially completed Stephenson’s Rocket lurking in the background ………  ;)




Two battens were glued to the underside of the base board to allow for the height of the bolt heads and make the base a little more stable.




A block of MDF was cut to size from the plans to make adjusting the height of the top easier, and the top was then positioned and the bolts all secured.




So far, so good.  Tomorrow will be the first attempt at making the keel components and cutting the rabbet.

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Hi Grant,


Great start, I agree about the plans.  I really like the idea of the group build, it is nice to be able to share the fun and the pain


As soon as I finish the Oseberg rigging I will start the build board while wait for my HobbyMill order.  I can't wait to get started.


This is my first scratch build as well so I am looking forward to Grant's gentlemanly pace.

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Thanks everyone for looking in and for the encouraging words as we step gingerly into the dark side. Welcome one and all - there's plenty of seats available and now that Mark and Sjors are both here, the bar is open and there's popcorn for everyone!


I did get the keel done today, with the exception of cutting the rabbet. No pics yet, but will post some as soon as I've cut the rabbet.


If anyone else wants to join in this little group build, you are more than welcome. We'll be going slow, so there's plenty of time to get caught up.

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Were talking 3 slows here Augie, there's my slow, there what you term as normal folks slow and then there's Grants slow.


I reckon this will just about see Grant to his retirement mate, lets see, Grants 54 this month, that gives him 11 years.


Sounds about right to me. :D  :D :D  :D  


Be Good





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When you say 'slow', are you talking Mobbsie slow or normal folks slow ?????

Well, if Mobbbsie was concerned about the "Grant slow", it just got slower......


Tried cutting the rabbet tonight...............let's just say that more practice is required.........


Looks like I get to make a whole new keel all over again. At this rate, the scrap bin is going to be well fed!


I'll be back when I've got this keel and rabbet sorted. Less haste, more speed me thinks!

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Welcome to the group. If you PM me with your email address, I'll send you a copy of the materials list spreadsheet I worked up, plus a few additional aids. You will need to purchase your own set of plans/drawings, available through the Model Ship Builder (MSB) website: http://modelshipbuilder.com/page.php?135

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One further addition to the building jig before moving on.  I added some keel retaining strips and stuck on copies of the frame position indicators for good measure.

The Keel Assembly

The keel assembly is comprised of four components: Keel, False Keel (Upper), False Keel (Lower) and Hog.  The False Keel (Lower) is made from 1/16” thick Ebony, while the remaining pieces are all Swiss Pear. All components are 1/4” thick.


The Hog needs to be cut with a series of steps and notches.  Both side and top views are provided in the drawings, so I printed these onto sticky label paper to use as templates and then cut the profile using a 1/4” end mill cutter in my Sherline Mill.  This was the perfect size for the width of the notches.  I was quite pleased with the results.




And here are the four pieces ready for assembly:




After assembling the four components, I ran them through the thickness sander with a very light pass just to ensure everything was nice and even.




The next job was to cut the rabbet, and this is where I ran into the first major hitch.  :o  


The rabbet is straight, parallel to the keel for about 2/3 of it’s length, where it changes angle slightly and sweeps up moving aft. I cut the rabbet by hand using a very nice V-chisel.  The first cut was a very, very light one and the wood peeled off beautifully.  Unfortunately, this may have lulled me into a false sense of security, as I may have been a little over-zealous in the end. From this angle it doesn’t look too bad.




I might have accepted this ‘as is’, until I looked closely at the second side……

You can see here that I managed to induce quite a wave into the angle part.  :angry:  :angry:  :angry:




It’s back to chisel school for me I’m afraid!  :rolleyes: 


I thought about this for a while and then decided to try a different approach.  Enter the “Secret Weapon”  ;)




This is 90º V-Groove Router bit with a 1/4” shaft. It fits nicely into a collet on the Sherline Mill.


Here is the set-up I used on the mill.




And here is the result:




I’m much happier with this!  :) 


The keel assembly was trimmed to length and is now ready for use.  Next up, we start playing with frames.  Oh goodie - more toys to use!  :D  :D  :D 



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Hi Grant,


Nice job on the Mk 2 keel mate. How on earth did you manage to change the angle? Does your milling bed rotate to allow for the change or was it a very careful turning of the dials

Are those two gray angled shims I see part of the answer? alter the angle that the vice holds the keel?

Thanks Mobbsie and Lou.


The change in angle was achieved by angling the milling vice on the milling table. This was done by eye, with a bit of trial and error to ensure the cutting bit would track down the line. After I had finished it, I had one of those Blinding Glimpses of the Obvious (BGO), that so often occur with the 20/20 vision of hindsight - I could have used the rotating table that I have for the mill to achieve the same result more accurately and more easily! Oh well..........


Lou - the "gray shims" are a set of parallel bars that I used to ensure the top surface was level and just clear of the top of the vice.

Edited by gjdale
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Thanks for the good words and all the likes folks.


First Frames

There are 5 double frames and 12 single frames in this cross section. I decided to start with the foremost frame, which is the double frame D1/D2. Figured this would be a good place to get techniques/methodology sorted out.


All frames will be made from 1/4" thick Swiss Pear. The stock is very slightly over-size for thickness. In making the first frames, I chose to leave the stock thickness "as-is" until the frame assembly is complete, and then reduce by passing the completed frames through the thickness sander. I may live to regret that decision, but we'll see how it goes! :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

Prior to cutting these out on the scroll saw, the timber stock was covered with low-tack painters’ tape, and the templates printed on sticky label paper and stuck on top of the tape. This is a tip I picked up from a scroll saw forum - it makes removal of the pattern very easy and there is no sticky residue to clean up afterwards. I have to say, having now tried this method, that it works a treat! :)


In laying out the pattern pieces, care was taken to ensure that the grain ran along the length of each piece (as far as possible).


The pieces were cut roughly to shape on the scroll saw, leaving about 3mm all round, and then the final shape was achieved using the Byrnes disc sander for the outside curves, and the oscillating spindle sander for the inside curves.

When it came to cutting the scarf joints and keel notches, I experimented with a couple of different methods, including hand saw and chisel, band saw, and using the mill with an end cutter. In the end, I decided that I was over-thinking it, and simply cut these as accurately as I could with the scroll saw, and then cleaned up with a (very sharp) chisel and file where necessary (which to be honest, wasn’t much).


The chocks were deliberately left over-size to provide a “handle” for cutting and shaping the “business” end. The bulk of the handle will be cut off prior to assembly and the remainder cleaned up on the spindle sander after assembly.

Here are the completed frame pieces cut out and ready for assembly:


Glue-up awaits, but if I've missed something important here, now's the time to tell me! :o :o :o

Edited by gjdale
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