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18th Century Longboat by Jack12477 - FINISHED - Model Shipways 1:48

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After reading all the build logs of other members, I decided to get this kit and start building it before I start all the other model kits in dry dock. This is my first build log so please bear with me while I become accustomed to this system.


First the customary opening photos:




Laying the keel. (The miniature shoulder plane really works and is great for small parts)






Building the frames:







Planking underway:






Planking completed:





I think the planks are either set too low or the frames need trimming down ? (Always have trouble getting the first plank set at the right level below the bulkhead/frame top edge.)



Edited by Jack12477
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More photos this morning:  After looking at the boat again and comparing it to other member's models, I think I made the first plank a little to low at the bow (clamping problem ?). Didn't see it till I was finished. Easy correction I think is to just add an additional plank above and then taper it with my miniature plane down to the stern. Since the friezes will be applied over it I doubt the mistake will be even noticed.


Comments anyone, before I move on ?????





After removing the centers and sanding them down:



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Hey Jack, first things first great to see your build, it's a great little boat and a lot of fun to build.  Some thing I have noticed on your build that might help you (and I know this because I struggled with them on my build) It seems that either your garboard strake comes too far forward or has the wrong curve, this caused the plank(s) above it to crowd together and ended up with you having to drop the plank in the middle.  


It does seem like you need another strake at the top of the bow section but at the mid line and aft you don't really have room for it.  You will need to bring up the bow closer to the the slight indent in the keel, I'm not sure how to go about this at this point with the crowding at the midpoint and aft.  


I would take a look at the builds from BobF, Stuntflyer, and MikeY for assistance.  Take my advice with a grain of salt, the longboat is only my third build  :) Great to see your build and I will be following along.



Edited by divarty
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Ryan thanks for the review and advice. Your observations are spot on. I had a lot of trouble figuring out the radius of the curve for the garboard first and second plank. Took 3 tries and 3 un-glues before I got it reasonably right. The real problem tho is the 1st sheer plank at the gunwale It wasn't set high enough at the bow. The last planks (middle) were full width in the center with a very sharp taper at each end. I ended up with 11 planks on each side instead of the 12 that Chuck had specified in the instructions.


My solution was to edge glue another sheer plank at the gunwale and get it aligned with the bow then plane it down to super thin at mid-section. It worked! Until I pulled a really dumb move.


I tried to soak the whole boat for 5 minutes to see if I could get some of the indents caused by the clamps out of the planks. WRONG IDEA ! Apparently you don't really need isopropyl alcohol to unglue Elmer's Carpenter Glue - just plain old H2O will do the job even quicker. I guess it isn't really a PVA type glue but it's what I've used on all my models without problems.


Photos of the disaster in the shipyard follow:



So the Build Log will be on hold for a while until I can either repair the damage or start over with new planking. Will update when I figure it out.


In the meantime, if anyone has any suggestions/recommendations on how to calculate the radius of the curve on the garboard planks, I would greatly appreciate hearing from you. Edge bending is new for me and I had a lot of trouble getting the curvature on the first to planks set. The sheer plank(s) were less of a problem as I could just clamp them in place wet and let them dry overnight before glueing them in place.


I guess I won't be getting my ration of grog for this screw-up :(:stunned::angry:

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Ouch.  Sorry to see that Jack. For how to figure out the curve and width of each plank check out BobF's build log and the tick strip method  (http://modelshipworld.com/index.php/topic/1465-18th-century-longboat-by-bobf-ms-148-tri-club/page-2)  I followed his log on my second go round of planking and it was invaluable.  For the garboard I just eyeballed the curve vs the other builds on this site that I liked.  Then I marked up the bulkheads using the tick strips and bent the plank, I would then gradually sand off the plank on the inner curve to get a smooth meeting with the plank below it and worked on the outer curve until it matched up against the tick marks.  This method gave me a nice consistent curve and ensured that each plank was the correct width.  I was only able to do one or two planks per side a day but the end result was head and shoulders above my first go at it. 


For the denting I had the same problem with the bass wood.  Some members will suggest swapping out to boxwood, however instead of going through that extra expense you can take a couple of small pieces of scrap bass wood and place them between your plank and the clamp.  any clamp marks go into the scrap wood instead of your final plank.  The drying process takes a little longer as you have another piece of wet wood in the mix but it avoids most of the dings caused by the clamps and the ones that occur can be sanded out without taking off too much wood.



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Yes, it's a mess ! Can't reprint here what I was calling myself for that blunder but you all can imagine :angry:


I did see BobF's tutorial in his build log and tried to use it (unsuccessfully) as a guide .  Couldn't figure out how to use the "diminishing line grid" or more explicitly where to place the first tick strip on the grid for the scale I'm using.  I also did like you and tried to eyeball the curve on each modelers build but found that to be somewhat frustrating as the perspective of each photo was off (bad angle) so the true radius was distorted.


Oh well !  Now to figure out how to recover the planking and reattach it to the frames without starting a complete rebuilt with a new kit.  Slow setting CA might help hold them while the wood glue sets, but I am loath to using CA as it is very unforgiving. I've used CA Debonder to "unglue" misaligned planks but it leaves a mess to clean up.


Thanks for following my build and the advice.

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Jack I took some close up pictures of my garboard strake for you, maybe they can help?  I included a ruler to show how far in front of the scarf joint my garboard strake ended, and another shot showing the distance from where the curve started to the end of the garboard.  I included one shot with just an overall view of it.  I will tell you up front my planking is far from the best on the site but hopefully it helps :).  If I can provide pictures of anything else please let me know, I can even PM them to you so as not to clutter up your build log with my photos.  





Distance from the scarf to the tip of the garboard (it appeared to be about 3mm)




Distance from where the curve of the garboard starts to the tip of the garboard. (The curve down started around 9mm to 10mm)



Edited by divarty
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Ryan, thanks for taking the time to post your photos. I'll have to recheck my garboard plank measurements and compare them to your photos.Your planking looks much better than mine. 


Right now I'm on hold waiting for a response from Model Expo on my email request for parts replacement. While I'm waiting, I am looking at alternative solutions.


Trying to disassemble this mess will probably break the false keel and/or frames. I've already had to completely reattach the stern and get all the planks reattached to it. I installed cross-braces between each frame to keep the frames from breaking but in the process broke the tip off the bow stem (the bow filler block delaminated and in reclamping it broke the stem tip). There is a "spare" bow stem included in the kit so I can use that but I'm afraid unglueing the installed one will totally destroy it. I may do a cut/paste splice from the spare to the attached one.


One solution I'm going to try is to take some cut up strips of sponge (from wife's make-up kit) and soak them in water and them lay them on the planks to see if I can "soften" the planks and  get them reattached.  Or maybe I can just detach the planks entirely and install new ones. If not I guess I'll have to start over. I'm trying to use the CA as little as possible and stick with the Carpenters yellow wood glue, which is my preferred glue.


Either way I'm going to be in the shipyard for a while figuring out a solution.


Here's photos of the "mess":






Thanks for your advice, it is much appreciated.


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It seems like you have the same issue as I did with the third plank from top, as it like to curle outwards (not sticking to the bulkhead completely), either you redo the whole plank or just do partial at the bow. Since I used CA, it was easier to cut out and replace part of it. Just take it slowly and think "each plank as a separate project".

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Per, thanks for stopping by.  I'm afraid it is more than just the 3rd plank, it's half the hull on both sides. The water bath dissolved the glue and they all popped loose. Then when the planks all dried they became very stiff and unbending.


Apparently this particular brand of Elmers is not waterproof and can be unglued with water. I've switched over to their Titebond II brand.


I'm now alternating between Slow CA (10-15 sec) and Titebond II to reattach them. I've cut small strips of sponge, soaked them in water, and then lay the sponge along the planks to "soften" them, then putting a small drop of CA on every third bulkhead and Titebond on the others and slowly press the planks back in place, pushing them back into alighnment with my fingers. I'm finding my fingers are a better clamp than any of my mechanical clamps. It's a very slooooow process but it seems to be working. I have to leave the sponges on the planks for hours before the water softens them even to rebend them into place.. 


I'll post some pictures when I get a little further along with the salvage ;) process.

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Floyd, thanks for the encouragement. Yes, I was pretty tempted to just pitch the thing in the trash can.  But slow progress is being made.


As I said in an earlier post, I took one of my admiral's cosmetic sponges and cut it into narrow strips of varying lengths. I then soak then in water and lay them along the length of the plank(s) I need to re-bend and re-attach, let then soak for hours before attempting to bend them back into place.


The attached photos show the current progress:


First set re-attached and held by clamps



After removing the clamps:




Now soaking the remaining planks:


post-13502-0-66660100-1417101728_thumb.jpg post-13502-0-71902500-1417101727_thumb.jpg


The last plank on the left side in photo will be either re-attached (I saved it) or a new one fashioned to fill the gap.

Then I can hopefully pick up where I left off without any more stupid mistakes.


Happy Thanksgiving to all my American modellers. It's time to get out of the shipyard and go "get stuffed" :cheers:

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Okay, I'm finally back to square one. The "restoration" is complete. Planks didn't fit as nicely into the rabbet at the bow as originally but it's passable. In the process I broke off the top of the bow stem, so I have to either fabricate a new piece or use the "spare" stem that comes with the kit to graft a new top piece onto the existing but broken stem. I'll work on that next week. And I have to remove the frame braces I installed to protect the frames while I was trying to reattach the planks.


For now, here's the results:





Ryan: The Admiral gladly contributed the sponge to the shipyards tool chest ;)



Edited by Jack12477
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Thank you everyone for all the Likes. I appreciate them.


I took a few days off from the shipyard to travel to Mystic Seaport with some friends for their annual Lantern Light Tours. Of course, the night we had booked for our tour (Saturday) just happened to be the day the East Coast got hit with an all-day heavy rain storm and the Seaport does not cancel their tours due to inclement weather. So we donned the foul-weather gear and shouldered on. Our tour departed at 8:15 PM, lasted a little over 45 minutes and is literally conducted via lantern (oil lamp), making it difficult to dodge the puddles.


We also took a side trip to Newport RI to tour the Mansions - the Elms, Marble House, and Breakers - the latter two belonging to the Vanderbilts (of New York Central RR fame amongst other industries). They said that at his death Cornelius Vanderbilt ("The Commodore") was worth in today's US dollars over $180 Billion (USD) making him the richest man who ever lived. The Mansion of Newport were their Summer "Cottages".


Here's a piece of history trivia:  All of the ships at Mystic Seaport, including the Charles W Morgan, had a small Christmas tree strapped to the very top of the Foremast. Does anyone know what this maritime tradition signifies?  Answer on my next post.


Well, it's back to the shipyard to continue the build. More postings will come shortly.

Edited by Jack12477
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Update:  Bow stem repaired. Temporary braces removed, Cap rail installed and sanded. Red tape applied to mask off areas to be painted. I'm going to paint the cap rail, inside and stern red as the others. Interior I think I will stain (not sure which color yet). Have not decided whether I will paint the lower hull white or leave it "natural". The red "masking" tape I'm using is Great Planes brand 1/8" EZ-Mask Flexible Masking tape. I started using it when I was building the plastic Tamiya armor kits. It's very flexible, low tack and applies easily.


post-13502-0-58283600-1418222080_thumb.jpg post-13502-0-87203800-1418222081_thumb.jpg




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Ryland, Floyd, Divarty, thanks for the likes.


Updates: Painting of cap rail and interior completed; I stained the interior and exterior hull with Minwax Natural, while the floorboards are stained slightly darker with Miniwax Golden Oak. The lighting doesn't bring out the color too well. Using the flash at this close distant totally washes out the photos.


Gluing the floorboards in place:





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I've run into a bit of a quandary in my build. I'm at the point of constructing the thwarts and I am finding a discrepancy between the printed instructions and the plans. The instructions call for 1/8 x 1/32 for 7 of the thwarts and 3/16 x 1/32 for the mast thwart. The plans show the thwarts as 5/32 wide with the mast thwart 1/4" wide at the widest and 5/32" at the narrowest.


Has anyone else encountered this discrepancy and if so how do you solve it?  Are the instructions wrong or is the plan drawing off ?

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Well, some progress. I decided to leave the thwarts as specified in the instructions but enlarged the mast thwart a little. Sorry the lighting is dark, these point and shoot digital camera don't have a way of cutting the flash output. When I use the built-in flash at this close range it completely washes out the image.



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Here's a better shot: post-13502-0-76799100-1418944173_thumb.jpg


At my advanced age it takes quite a while for the neurons to bring the "learned photography tricks" out of archival storage and into current active memory ;) . In the old days of film photography when you needed to cut the light output from the electronic flash you could use a white handkerchief and drape it over the flash unit. In the case above I folded the handkerchief twice so I had two layers of cloth to diffuse the light output. Worked pretty good.

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Flying along now Jack, she looks great, good call on the thwarts, I know my sizes between instructions and plans varied but it may have been me measuring it incorrectly.  For the thwart where the mast drops through you were spot on in using a wider piece.  Thats a great tip by the way with the handkerchief, I'll file that one away for later use.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well, I finally got back into the shipyard after taking some time off for the holidays to be with children and grandchildren. And also take part in the Ice Yacht Expo at [President] Franklin Delano Roosevelt's Home and Library in Hyde Park. Our ice yacht club (Hudson River Ice Yacht Club - HRIYC) has the largest collection of historic stern steering ice yachts in the world, and they are actively sailed when ice and weather permits.


But back to the build.  Made some progress in spite of the time off. Had a helluva time with the rudder spindles; those little wires pins wouldn't adhere to the brass even with CA and Accelerator, but I finally succeeded in getting the attached.


Pictures follow:



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Hi Jack I just went through your entire build, you had a tough bit there with the planking but it all worked out well in the end, your patience paid off. It is a very nice looking model, and once you have this one under your belt I am sure that you will dive right into the next one.


There is something special about these small boats that I don't feel with the big ships. I think it has something to do with the immediacy of the human element and that they are much closer to the water and hence the action of nature.



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