OcCre’s HMS Terror Scale Issue

A few weeks ago, I broke down and purchased the HMS Terror kit from Ages of Sail. I couldn’t help myself as it is such and interesting subject and the kit looks very adaptable to making small upgrades, such as improved scale deck planking, upgrading the deck structures and fittings, etc.

I even reached out and made contact with ship modeler Matthew Betts who did all the research work that the kit was based off of. If you haven’t check out his blog, you really need to, particularly if you are interested in building a model of this ship. His blog is not about building this kit, however, it’s about scratch building a 1/48-scale model, but it details his work. You can visit his blog at:  http://buildingterror.blogspot.com

He hasn’t completed his model as it’s currently on tour with an exhibition on the ill-fated Franklin Expedition. However, he has posted drawings and information on the hull and deck details of the ship, and I’ve been reviewing some of this.

He and I have also discussed posting information on ways one might upgrade the OcCre kit using his research work. I am very excited about this, as I think many model builders out there might like to build this ship and take the kit detail “up a notch.” Mr. Betts has listed some of the areas where the kit could be improved upon. Some are as simple as adjusting the location of the engine and stove pipe funnels, etc. Others involve reshaping an area of the ship’s hull. But, I will post more about this in the future.

In the meantime, I’ve gone over his drawings and looked over the layout of the deck and compared them to the kit and noticed a problem right away. It appears that the stated scale is not correct. This isn’t an issue that affects building the kit, only the scale to which any modifications need to be made to.

I reached out to OcCre about my discovery, and after a short back and forth, they agreed with me that there was an error in a reference measurement that threw off the stated scale. What it comes down to is that the HMS Terror kit is not a 1/65-scale model kit, but more like a 1/75-scale model kit.

Is this a big issue? Not unless you’re trying to build all your models in the same scale and you’re expecting this one to pretty well match your flotilla of 1/64-scale models, which is a very popular scale. But, if that’s not the case, then I see no problem with the model being 1/75-scale. I have a couple Woody Joe kits in that scale, and I see no problem with it. Also, there are many other classic kits in that scale, such as Corel’s Wasa, Mirage and Toulonnaise, as well as Mantua’s Le Superbe and San Felipe, and many Billing Boats kits.

This does, however, affect my plans to add upgrades to the model, as I want those upgrades, like the deck planking, ship’s boats, deck fittings, etc., to be in the correct scale. But, it only means that I need to use the corrected scale for all my calculated measurements.

Overall, I am very impressed by OcCre’s willingness to initially respond to my queries, and then to responded that they will make corrections, which really should only affect their website description of the kit and the printed sheet that wraps the box, stating the kit specifications.

I still really like this kit and think ship modelers will enjoy building this unique subject, regardless of scale. Ω


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