Daily Archives: February 10, 2021

Starting a 1/20-scale Senzanmaru Model

First post on a new model project of a traditional Japanese boat. This time, it’s a specific boat called Senzanmaru. It is the only example of an actual Edo period boat that still exists today.

Wasen Mokei 和船模型

A couple weeks ago, in a spurt of initiative, I finally began work on a 1/20-scale model fo the Edo period boat Senzanmaru.

Senzanmaru is a whaleboat-style craft that was used by the Hachisuka clan of the former Awa province, now called Tokushima province. The boat measured just under 34 feet long and was propelled by up to 5 sculling oars. In addition, the boat has a mast step, though many boats have such a feature that goes unused.

I don’t know all the details of the boat and how it was used, but it is highly ornamented with elaborate designs painted on her hull and a relieve carving of a dragon on either side of her stem. While boats similar in size and type were used in large numbers to tow large gozabune, highly ornamental military-style vessels that served as yachts and transports for high-ranking samurai, the…

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