Category Archives: Philosophy

Closing Up the Hull Part 2

My previous Post was getting kind of long for closing up the Hull so I made a new Post.

Port side

I’m doing one side at a time because it’s all precision Plane-ing, Sanding to fit each Strake.

All the hard part is completed and I will miss this particular Phase of Ship Building, which is the Planking.

I realize that I have a few mistakes. .. Broken Planks, etc. But it all gets sanded down and the next Planking will cover it all.

Next is the Wales and upper Deck. πŸ€”πŸ™„πŸ‘

Improvising

I hate it when I miscalculate like this!!! .. πŸ™„πŸ€”πŸ˜«

I used to agonize when I first started out. I belong to several Model Ship Building Groups on Facebook and I often see guys who agonize over the smallest thing. Like being 1 mm off for example. I just shrug my shoulders. You just have to have a lot of patience and make the best of any mistakes. Shoot, you wouldn’t be a very good Ship Builder if you don’t make mistakes. That’s how you learn, right?

For my Wales, I’m thinking about trying out Glycerin and Hot Water to bend the Wood, as it’s a hard wood.

#18 Port side done

It really annoys me that I made a mistake on this Strake. I woke up and I decided to glue it. .. BEFORE Coffee!!! .. Well, I had it tapered and Pre-Bent for the Starboard side!!! .. Anyway… No biggy. .. Doesn’t look too bad. . πŸ€”πŸ™„

Planking always seems like a journey to me… You take 1 Step at a Time…

#19 Strake

I skipped over #18 on this side because of my previous screw-up.. .

Still turned out good. I used Contact Cement and Superglue for the very forward part that Bends around the Bow White Glue for the rest.

I was thinking to myself that in the next build, I’m going to shape some Balsa Wood between Bulkheads #1 and #2. I hate it when the Strakes go flat between those 2 Bulkheads. πŸ€”πŸ™„πŸ˜«

Just about closed
Small Gap left Starboard side

That piece of Wood jammed in there is my Pre-Bent Strake that I will shape to go into that hole…

Last Strake to go in
Clamping in Last Strake!!!

πŸ‘πŸ˜†πŸŽ‰

Strake Terminology

I do realize there is a whole other numbering convention for Strakes, but I just went with my own instead. It gets too confusing for me using Letters. πŸ€”πŸ™„πŸ˜²

Terminology

In boat and ship construction, strakes immediately adjacent to either side of the keel are known as the garboard strakes or A strakes. The next two are the first broad or B strake and second broad or C strake. Working upward come the bottom strakes, lowers, bilge strakes, topside strakes, and uppers also named sequentially as the D strake, E strake, etc. The uppermost along the topsides is called the sheer strake. Strakes are joined to the stem by their hood ends.

A rubbing strake was traditionally built in just below a carvel sheer strake. It was much less broad but thicker than other strakes so that it projected and took any rubbing against piers or other boats when the boat was in use. In clinker boats, the rubbing strake was applied to the outside of the sheer strake. Many current pleasure craft reflect this history in that they have a mechanically attached (and therefore replaceable) rub rail at the location formerly occupied by a rubbing strake, often doubling to cover the joint between a GRP hull and its innerliner. Inflatable dinghies and RIBs usually have a rubbing strake (typically a glued-on rubber extrusion) at the edge.

A β€œstealer” is a short strake employed to reduce the width of plank required where the girth of the hull increases or to accommodate a tuck in the shape. It is commonly employed in carvel and iron/steel shipbuilding, but very few clinker craft use them.

Philosophy and Musings

Model Ship Building is indeed a Slow-Motion Hobby. .. You really have to be a patient person and have a lot of attention to detail.

Which is sometimes my failing is that I don’t have as close of attention to detail as compared to a lot of guys.

A lot of guys eschew the method I’m using and may use some different planking patterns as I’ve seen on different Bluff-Bowed Ships, but I’m sticking with calculating the fraction that you need to taper to fit all the Planks in the same space as the largest Bulkhead to the Stem and Stern Post.

I’ve seen guys using different patterns which are pretty interesting . . πŸ™„πŸ€” . Can’t say I won’t ever try them in the future…

My method is the Bow to Stern, Single-Plank Method, which I like. Although I have had to break them up at times as the Planks dictate…

Areas where Planks joined

“Just Listen to the Planks… Feeeel the Planks…” As they say.. .

πŸ™„πŸ€”πŸ«’

Transom

Rubber band Vise

I had to add some lumber to the Transom to bring the entire thing out in a Curve.

Shaped upper portion

I had to include this Filler Blocks because the Fillers for the aft section didn’t go out far enough.

Rubber Band Vise
Look at that gap… πŸ€”πŸ™„

I’m not sure if I’m going about this the hard way…

I suppose I could have simply shaved the Poop Deck down a bit… πŸ™„πŸ€”πŸ«’

I am just thinking ahead… I’m sure the Planking will hide a lot of flaws. These ships were constantly being modified anyway, especially this one. It was supposed to have a beefed up hull to better withstand any ice that they encountered. 😲

Had to put fillers on sides
Cutting out Piece 22a
These Windows are a Monster to get out

Currently I’m using a Scribe to puncture miniature Holes in the Wood. I’m hoping to scrape the wood from the other side!

Had to use Punch and Dremel in that order
Gluing Stern Balcony

Shrouds Progress

I wish I had somebody to talk “Ship-Talk” with. Preferably an Old Timer who has been doing this awhile and who I can watch work.

Anyway… Lacking that… I do this blogging. I know… It’s not the same thing. But I also follow some really talented Model Makers in the Groups I belong to.

So, I’m looking at these Shrouds and I am beginning to suffer the “Modeler’s Regret”… You know… When you think that you should have done something a certain way???… I guess that’s the nature of it. I’m not going to redo it all. Definitely not. But I’ve seen guys who do it.

A prime example are the Seizing on Shrouds that wrap around the Deadeyes.

I started off like this…

Deadeyes on Fore Mast, which I started off on…
Deadeyes on Main Mast

I especially love the one all the way to the left. I wish they were all like that and uniform. Hmmm… πŸ€”πŸ™„πŸ§

Main Mast Shrouds

Mast Hole – Foremast

One of the things I really like about having a blog is that I can really get into the minutiae of whatever I have going on. Making Posts on Facebook or Instagram or whatever, I always feel like I’m being a braggart or whatever. When in fact, the only thing I really want to accomplish with the blog is to have a record of my work. That being said…

Mast Hole – Foremast

While laying the planks down, I always wonder how I’m going to work around the Mast Hole. Of course everybody finds the solution best for them. Here’s mine…

Mast Hole and Mini Rat-tail File I have to be careful because this is my only one… 🀭

While laying down the Planks, I like to take and file down the Planks as they overlap into the Mast Hole. Not to wait until after they’re planked over and drill through it.

Drills tend to dig into and splinter the wood that is this light. Files work a lot better for this work.

Sanding and finishing Hull

As I’m into my 2nd day of sanding and making micro adjustments here and there, I was thinking to myself how I never rush this process.

I find that it helps to put it down and pick it up every once in awhile over the course of a few days before proceeding to the next step.

During that time, I’ve come to realize some of the shortcomings and disadvantages of Dap Weldwood Contact Cement. I’ll cover this more in a Post dedicated to it.

In the meantime, suffice it to say that I’ve made perhaps about a dozen or so repairs of Planks that didn’t retain their glue holds, which I’ve had since to repair with SuperGlue. Not to mention those annoying little Glue sprues.

One thing that I’ve found out from previous models is the danger of over sanding. You always need to stay aware of how much wood you have left under what you’re working on. Which is not to say that you can’t take it down to almost paper thin… But you want to avoid doing that just for the sake of preserving it’s structural strength.

Between now and when you’re done, the model will get handled quite a bit. Once it’s displayed though, there’s not much to worry about unless you have kids or cats.

#9 Strake

The Strakes are curving around nicely around the Bow.

I was afraid that I was going to run out of space but I think it’s all going to fit together nicely. I may need a Stealer but I’m not sure yet.

#9 Port Side gluing in

Just doing the Starboard side of #9 and I was thinking to myself that the Batten was right at around 11 – 12 Plank’s worth of Planks on the biggest Bulkhead which was the #9 Bulkhead. It actually landed on 11.6 Plank Widths… So figured I would round up for comfort’s sake.

To be honest, this whole time I was planking, I thought that I was going to run out of space.

The cardinal rule in Planking is to apparently not cut your Plank to any smaller than 1/2 if your original Plank. What is frowned on is for a Plank to come up to the Bow in a Point. The reason being, there was no way to secure a pointed piece of Timber.

I probably should do a Post on some rules on Planking.

#9 Plank Starboard side being glued in

Different Methods of Determining Tapering

In my efforts to learn about planking, I ended up learning about three or four methods and here’s what I found out.

I think that’s the worst thing that you could do is to go by planking your boat haphazardly. You really need to make a plan and think about what you’re doing before you begin the project.

The first method that I learned was from the book Ship Modeling Simplified.

To be honest, I really wasn’t a big fan of this method because what they require you to do was to bend your plank around the Hull and at the point where the plank above it was your point x and for you to taper the playing from that point on to the Bow at the point where that plank met it.

The next method is the one that I’m using now. This method requires you to use a batten that divides the Hull of the ship into two bands. The upper band and a lower band.

Then what you have to do is to calculate out how much taper you’re going to need by mathematically finding out how small the Plank needs to be in order for it to squeeze into a certain space.

First you have to find out how many planks are going to be all the biggest part of the bulkhead, then you determine how you’re going to be able to squeeze that many planks into a limited space like the first bulkhead.

Another method is by using proportional dividers. I kind of have a hard time with this one because the proportional divider didn’t go small enough for the scale the ship that I was using but I’ll save that for later scale model which is bigger.

Like I said, there are as many methods as there are Model Makers. But this is my method. I’m not into it for speed production. Slow and Steady…

“Steady as she goes…” 🀣🀭😲

Updates on Flying Fish and HMS Surprise

So here it is January 1st 2020… Beginning the new year so I figured it was time for me to complete the HMS Surprise.

What happened was that on the Flying Fish project, I ran into a little bit of a snag.

The kid by corral only provided less than about three-quarters of a meter of the flexible Beech wood. I only had just enough to complete the interior planking along the gunwale, and it didn’t leave me enough to finish up the caprails.

Sewing in anticipation of this time, I had ordered some more Beachwood from Modelers Central but they are based out of Australia! This is around two weeks ago. Well, come to find out that there’s a difference between plain Beech wood and flexible Beech wood!

So now I have all this wood that I’ll probably end up finding a use for… but they’re not useful to me right now!

So I went ahead and bit the bullet and reordered some flexible Beech wood from the same company but it will be another two weeks!

Turns out this flexible Beech wood is really expensive! So I probably got enough of this stuff to last me for the next few models anyway!

But I have nothing to do in the meantime since I have to wait to install the cap rail before I could continue with doing anything else so I decided to start back on the HMS Surprise.

At this point, I am installing the supports for the main deck…