Monthly Archives: May 2019

Building a Gozabune (Kobaya) from Paris Plans – Part 12

The most perplexing part of this small row galley of the Shōgun’s fleet of boats is the decorations which adorn the rails along the sides of the hull. Fortunately, a new tools helped solve this matter, and it worked quite well.

Wasen Mokei 和船模型

Work on the Kobaya is moving forward again. While coming up with a way to deal with the decorative patterns on the hull has held me up, I did have some ideas. But, the best I could think to do required the use of a new tool, and it took me a while to bight the bullet and buy it.

Note the pattern of the chain of hexagons and what look like little sunbursts in the Paris drawings.

The solution I came up with was to either create a mask for painting or possibly for the application of gold leaf, or to simply cut a pattern that was itself gold leafed. This probably sounds more complicated than it turned out to be. The central part of the solution turned out to be the use of a vinyl cutter, like those used in scrapbooking.
After looking at a few of the…

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My Latest Tool Addition – Cameo 3 Vinyl Cutter

Last week, I received a new addition to my ship modeling tools. This one is a little more specialized that many that I have. It’s a Silhouette Cameo 3 vinyl cutting machine.

The unit is software controlled, and connects to a computer, in my case, a Mac. The software is a free download from the maker’s website and it’s actually a bit more sophisticated than I expected. Upgraded versions of the software, called Silhouette Studio, provide more specialized features, including the ability to import files from other programs, such as Adobe Illustrator and others.

These desktop vinyl cutters are basically the size of a computer printer and are essentially glorified plotters (if you remember those), with a blade mounted instead of a pen. It is capable of cutting vinyl, paper, cardboard, and various other similar materials.

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Preventing Glue Spills

Last week, I got fed up with knocking over little bottles of CA glue and finally tried to do something about it.

I’ve been using these small 1/2 oz. bottles of BSI brand cyanoacrylate glue (i.e. super glue), and I’ve found that they are very easy to knock over. It wouldn’t be so bad, except that I find the vapor inside the bottles seem to be very sensitive to heat, and expand easily when warmed. If left open, the resulting pressure increase manages to push the glue out and into a puddle on the workbench.

One thing I started to do was to keep the glues in the base of a small compartmentalized parts box. This works, but you have to keep the parts box nearby at all times when using the glue.

Recently, I left a bottle out on the bench and didn’t realize that I’d knocked it over. When I noticed it, it was too late and there was a hard puddle of thick CA glue on the bench top. So, I thought I’d try something different. I cut some small rectangles of some acrylic I had on hand and used some 3M double-sided tape to stick them onto the bottoms of the glue bottles.

You can see in the above photo that I can tip by the bottle a ways now without it knocking over. Of course, if I do manage to knock it over, the bottle will be tipped down at an angle, so that might empty the bottle completely. Still, I’m willing to risk that, as any glue spills are bad and I’m hoping this will help in eliminating them.

If you have any better ideas, please let me know. Ω

 

Vanguard Models – New Ship Model Company Venture by Chris Watton

Chris Watton is the designer behind Amati’s Victory Models line of ship model kits. These are some of the finest wooden ship model kits available. Now, Mr. Watton is now branching out on his own with a his new brand of ship model kits called Vanguard Models.

He’s announce on the Model Ship World forum that his first kit will be a 1/64-scale kit of the English cutter HMS Alert, which he expects to be released sometime around the end of May.

Image from Vaguard Models new website.

The details on the model appear to be up to Chris Watton’s fine standards, and I expect this is going to sell like hotcakes. Of course, it depends somewhat on the price point for these, plus shipping costs. That information is yet to be posted.

This looks to be only the first of what I hope will be many more products by Mr. Watton. Future products mentioned include the 14-gun English brig, HMS Speedy, and the 50-gun fourth-rate ship of the line, HMS Bristol. For now, the only source for the kits is the new Vanguard Models webiste, which appears to be in testing still.

You can keep track of developments by following posts on Model Ship World (click the earlier link), or possibly just keep checking the new website.

Buying and Building Japanese Wooden Model Kits

I’ve been getting a couple emails from a Japanese friend who sells kits internationally. He’s been a bit dismayed lately, as marketing to North America and Europe opens up some new issues for Japanese products, particularly with builders who lose parts or mess up their builds.

Woody Joe kits have lots of parts, well organized into bags and well labeled. Photo of a Japanese pagoda kit.

He goes out of his way to work with the customer to get parts from the manufacturer. But, some customers upon learning they need to pay for replacement parts (as opposed to parts that are missing or faulty), suggest that either he or Woody Joe is practicing poor customer service. But, this is how things are done in Japan.

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Woody Joe’s New USS Susquehanna Kit in the Works

I just saw an exciting post on Woody Joe’s Facebook page today. Woody Joe is developing a new 1/120-scale wooden model kit of the USS Susquehanna, one of the famous kurofune or black ships of Commodore Perry’s squadron that sailed into Edo Bay in 1853 and 1854 to force a trade treaty with Japan.

These are photos posted on Facebook by Woody Joe of their prototype. There are many details that need to be worked out yet, so there is no word yet on pricing or availability. But, it is clearly a plank-on-bulkhead kit of the 3-masted barque-rigged paddlewheel steam frigate. At 1/120 scale, the model will measure about 34″ long.

Again, no price is set yet. But, based on their kits of similar size and detail, my guess is that it will run somewhere around 45,000¥ or about $400. We’ll see how close I come to the actual total. This kit appears to rely on more photo-etched brass than past kits, which can add a lot to a kit’s cost.

There’s a general lack of mid 19th-Century steamship model kits. This will join their own Kanrin Maru kit to help fill that gap. I, for one, am really looking forward to the release of this kit. But, I guess I should finish my own Kanrin Maru build before I get started on this one. So, it’s just as well that it’s not quite ready for release yet.

Zootoyz.jp will have the kit for sale as soon as it becomes available. I’ll make sure to post an update as soon as I find out more. Ω

OcCre’s HMS Beagle Kit Now in Stock (HMS Terror too)

New kit from OcCre models now available at Ages of Sail, HMS Beagle. This is a nice looking kit that OcCre lists as having a low difficulty level. Looking for your next ship modeling project? Check it out, along with their HMS Terror kit.

I have the HMS Terror kit, but I’m feeling an awfully strong pull for the HMS Beagle…

Ages of Sail

It’s been a bit of a wait with a lot of hold-ups along the way, but the new HMS Beagle kits have finally arrived!

Available Now!

HMS Beagle

We’ve been fulfilling the pre-orders, and if you’re one of these buyers, your kit is already on it’s way to you.

HMS Beagle

HMS Beagle

HMS Beagle

For the rest of you who are interesting in this kit, there are plenty in stock! We made sure to order enough that we shouldn’t be running out of them any time soon.

https://www.agesofsail.com/ecommerce/hms-beagle-(occre-1:60).html

And speaking of running out, the OcCre HMS Terror kits, which we had run out of, are now back in stock too!

https://www.agesofsail.com/ecommerce/hms-terror-occre-oc12004.html

HMS Terror

HMS Terror

HMS Terror

Both were early 19th century British warships, later modified for exploration. Which will YOU build?  Terror or Beagle?

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