Jump to content

HM Schooner Pickle by SpyGlass - Caldercraft - 1:64 Scale

Recommended Posts

"I couldnt resist it" said I to the Admiral.


My visit to Cornwall Model Boats was meant to be for a bit of taganika sheet for Pegasus and just a look around.


Wasn't to be - I was led astray while passing the packing department.





So Pickle it is.


I have been thinking for some time about a smaller build to intersperse with Pegasus and I would also like to try doing some substituting kit wood with "nicer" materals.


So - the log begins.


There are several pictures already of the box contents on other logs so I wont bother with box opening pics.


The instruction manual and parts list are nicely produced and i really like the construction photos given ( for all models) on www.jotika-ltd.com.    The plans are clear and full scale . A really good first impression in documents then.


Getting to the main contents


The first impression as how few parts there were after my Fly and Pegasus builds!!


Box presentation is poor.


Threads are all on individual size labelled spools - Amati and some other manufacturers should please note!!


The parts are CNC but not apparently laser cut - which means no burn and square  edged cuts.

The edges of some of the sheets are very rough. Lot of cutting dust still clogged in the cuts


I do intend replacing a lot of the wood anyway but I noted that some of the 2 layer walnut has a rather peculiar mottled effect.


I am a bit perturbed that there is a bit of 5mm walnut which doesnt seem to belong to the kit and there is a bad discoloration on one of the ply pieces which shouldnt matter too much but...




So a rather mixed first impression - I feel the need to go through the kit in detail to gain confidence and allay my concerns. Thats a shame .


But I have built other Jotika kits and have had no complaints and I know they have an excellent replacement record at least in the UK so we shall see. Will report again after a more thorough check.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm signed up for the ride Spyglass.  The Pickle looks like a very nice kit.  I'm working on two builds at once for the same reason - sometimes I got stuck on my Badger, and left the workshop for months at a time.  It's nice to take a break and switch gears to something else.


Looking forward to following along.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for comments chaps.


It doesnt matter much if i do get the bits mixed up - they are both the same 1/64 scale.  I actually didnt check the scale before i bought it , I was wandering around CMB with my hands apart saying " I want one about this long!"  ( It was nearly   Badger Mike but Pickle won.)


So I can use all the blocks and Chucks hooks and everything.


Lots of thinking to be done and I need to do a it historical research.


I not too keen on carronades - personal whim - so I may see if there was an alternative armament on this or a sister ship.

It would be really good if one of Chuck nice guns fitted.


just looking up wood suppliers in UK now for holly.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Decisions decisions.


No coppering.  Why cover up decent planking if you manage it. Jotika plates not as good as Amati (If i really wreck the lower hull I still have enough Amati ones to do tthe job.


Paint? or not or  a bit. Starting with the idea of no paint at all to (hopefully) show off nice woods- we shall see.  Wondering about ply edges showing on things like the cap rail.


Rabbet - no sign of one indicated in the kit - have I read it correctly  - will read again.  But I think a rabbet along the main keel isnt really necessary usually and the chamfering at the bearding line creates one at the stern end. 

But i do find that a stem rabbet is the secret to nice bow planking finish so i hall probably look to create one somehow there.


Bearding line chamfer - the instructions dont make sense to me . They say chamfer the ply down, do first planking and then chamfer that down again - seems weird to me .


I shall follow my usual practice  and only bring the first planking to roughly  halfway between  bearding line and edge of sheet.

(like my Peg build )


My first task of course is to check the keel and bulkheads for warp and fit and if that looks OK then start on the things that I think need to be done before any sticking takes place -


Stand holes drilling , stern chamfer and any rabbet work I decide on.

So this afternoon - check !

Edited by SpyGlass
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So - slight warp along the length of the keel ply  -worth correcting -  bit of weight for a while should do it.




No noticeable bend vertically


 Bulkheads are not exactly sloppy fit but  all but no 4 are looser than I would have liked. 




The addition of the gunport pattern forrard and the false deck amidships will lock things together better but I expect to need a bit of shimming/clamping to get the bulk heads square all ways. 

The false deck slot is too small to fit over the keel ply tongues around the main mast a bit of adjustment will be needed. Red arrow shows





The gunport pattern is just really a throwaway jig but has routing in the underside which fits over the bulkhead tops -



a nice idea I havent seen anywhere before to give a good guide to both shaping of the fore bulkheads and for the gunport ply strips



Next to big sister!

Edited by SpyGlass
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Marked the keel ply with arrows for suggested mounting bolt positions.


Marked bearding line for start of chamfer and my other line where I will terminate the sanded ends of the first planking.





 B/H s 7 and 8 are going to need quite a lot off the bottom to match the chamfering




That will do for today - I will put some weight on the keel ply and see how we go.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh heavens I have just unpacked the guns - I may have to give up on my idea of substituting the carronades. 

They are TINY just over 13 mm.  But really really nice guns - best I have ever seen I think.


Any one got any ideas what size cannon would be an alternative to a 12pdr carronade? 

I think I shall post that query in a better place as well

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One up to Jotika - dropped an emails telling them about my warped keel ply section. A replacement is on its way.  That the way to do it - well done.


Will still carry on trying to straighten the one I have as an experiment but I must say its not coming on as well as I had hoped - I will need the replacement.


Update  -  keel ply replacement arrived today -   from email  to delivery - 20 hours that s just so impressive. 


Oh and the new one is dead flat!!

Edited by SpyGlass
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So  I am going to prebend the gunport strips today.  Every time I have done a build with ply sides like this I think how sensible it would be to get the strips pre bent to help getting the keel and bulkhead all aligned - but of course I only remember AFTER I have fixed the BHs . But not this time !!!


Just an initial pre bend fit to see if all the BHs sit true compared to the strip and they do apart from no 6 which need just a teeny sand.



The BHS though are very sloppy compared to many kits so i think the compare against the strips may be wise.


Going to cut a bit of a keel rabbet - never does any harm


Trying to figure out how to do the stem rabbet - into the walnut stem piece or into the keel ply.

When the ply gunport strips are bent and offered up then I will be able to see better where the run of the hull will come against the stem and ecide.

Edited by SpyGlass
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ply soak only for an hour - because it feels a bit flimsy somehow  - so much so that I checked it is indeed 1mm thick.


Anyway onto a handy 6.5 cm diameter former - my tin of "Air duster"( which cost over £11 and appalled me at the time - but its lasted nearly ten years and is still going so a bargain). 


Plus a few bits of tape to add the lesser curves further along the strip.



Link to comment
Share on other sites


Well that looks OK overall.


You can see if you look carefully that the curved strip takes bit of a sharp angle at the first port cutout - as can be expected  -but i will add another clamp to ease that bend back


But oh the BHs are a real WOBBLY fit on the keel !!  they will need some care in fixing.


First impression is that the stem rabbet can be cut out of the keel which will make or a really nice fit.


The warped first keel ply still hasnt come back to an acceptable level but if nothing else it will make a nice test bed for the rabetting !


Interesting feature that I hadnt noticed - though on rereading the instructions do make it clear - some of the BHs line up in the middle of some ports

Link to comment
Share on other sites



We'll see. I'm working up a business here selling laser-cut parts for scale modellers and I find myself working an awful lot of hours. Hopefully, I can use the model to take a break from time to time. 


Since you're working up this build log here, I think I'll put mine on my website only. 


Best Regards, 



Link to comment
Share on other sites



Actually, I thought about it after and, you are right, I should post it here. My angle will be "my first Jotika kit". It will give me a chance to look at it, and comment, on what it would take to make this into a 1/48 scale kit, for instance. 


Right now, I am working on finding a way to replace photo-etch parts with laser-cut brass. That would be a huge step for the modelling industry. 





Edited by rshousha
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It looks like the brass laser-cutting is a long shot. However, I did find a supplier today who can do single sheets of photo-etch from a digital design. So, that`s a start. As long as I can deliver items to people who want unique pieces, in excellent quality, and in a reasonable amount of time, I`ll be happy.


Best Regards,



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just working gently to getting the work on the keel section done before any assembly.


Noticed that the 5mm ply is 4 layer and not the 5 layer that i am used to seeing - dont know if thats any issue - and it does give a nice predefined central line down the ply which is useful when it comes to thinning the stern.


I roughly practiced a bit on some scrap bits with my " easy rabbett cutting" technique and is works fine - the outer layers are 1mm so just cutting to the layer joins gives reasonable rabbet in minutes.



this is from the right - two 1mm deep cuts and a little bit deeper one which wasnt much trouble either.  The different widths are not significant.


I really see no sense in following the idea of planking both layers right to the stern and thinning each - as I said before I am going to take the tapering in two steps as i showed in my Peg build


So tried thinning down a corner as well ready for that .


you can juuuuust see the second layer showing which means the edge has been reduced by nearly exactly a mm.


So no problems there then.


A quick check for  stand position ( I made a slight boob the last time I did this and got away with it but getting it wrong can mean seriously weakening the keel ply).




AHH  potential boob avoided - just realised when looking at the pic that the stands and the associated drill holes do NOT go perpendicular to the keel which has a pronounced drop to the stern.  (Nice feature is a little spacer included to level the build for waterline marking etc)


The suggested position seemed a bit close spaced so I am thinking a bit wider like this - but it is very close to other cutouts then.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi there, Spy -- I just came across your new build log, and am excited to see how it progresses.  When you got to the ply gunport strip, my heart droppped, since that part proved such a nuisance on the Fly/Peg, but you seem to have got it down with nary a glitch.


As for the two build philosophy, I can certainly understand it, because there are plenty of times that I'm just annoyed with something and would like nothing more than to take up another project.  But my shipyard is about 2' x 3', and can barely accomodate the one project.  (I do have to confess that I built a workshop apart from my house, and in there I have a workbench that's 38" wide and 11' 8" long; but the shop isn't insulated, so that summer temperatures hover around 100 and right now they're at 18 -- not the prime conditions for glue-ups.)


I'll be keeping up with this interesting build, Spy.





Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ah ha  Martin  -  first the strips are not fixed yet - I was just using them as an additional guide because most of the BHs are very loose.


But this plywood strip is a doddle - no fancy curves and the ones there are are all gentle .   AND no jigsaw joint !!!

Also the ply seems "softer" somehow.


Tomorrow I am hoping to get most of the keel ply work done but i still need to figure whether the stem rabbet goes in the ply or the walnut section.

Edited by SpyGlass
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Spy

4 ply for the keel? That is very weird, I've never heard of an even number of ply layers. It would mean the grain runs vertically on one side and horizontally on the other. I wouldn't enjoy that - different sanding directions for each side - and is just plain strange - are you sure?


Aside from that your progress looks great.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...