Monthly Archives: March 2022

OcCre’s HMS Terror Build in High Speed

I actually have an HMS Terror that I acquired back when the kit was first introduced. I also had a nice email exchange with Matthew Betts, whose research the kit was based upon. In fact, I’m the person who alerted OcCre to their initial scale error, as it was originally claimed to be something like 1/65 scale, but turned out to actually be 1/75.

In any case, I got the kit mostly to study OcCre kit design. But, I did actually work on it. I may actually pick it up again and continue the build, especially after seeing this cool build video.

What is particularly of interest to me are the 3D printed figures that are featured here. I think I’ll try to get these made and see if they inspire me to look again at this build. HMS Terror is, after all, an incredibly interesting subject.

Ages of Sail

The latest video work from TOM’S Modelling in Motion brings us a 4-1/2 minute build of the Arctic expedition ship HMS Terror, one of two ships that disappeared while searching for the Northwest Passage in 1845, the other being HMS Erebus. The video takes us rapidly through the model, seemingly building itself, while educating us about the story of the ship and crew.

OcCre's HMS Terror

One thing that’s interesting about Tom’s build is his use of some specially designed 3D printed figures which are prominently displayed at the start of the video. Apparently, these figures are available as a file download for your 3D printer for a very reasonable price. Of course, you’ll need your own 3D printer or service to create them.

Tom’s figures are available as 3D printer files, which you can purchase, download, and print to your own 3D printer or using a service of your choice.

We don’t…

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Building Woody Joe’s Atakebune Kit – Part 12

Construction of the Atakebune type Japanese warship continues with the detailing of the deck of this modified kit from Woody Joe.

Wasen Mokei 和船模型

After some time away to work on the Oguraike boat and to get some traditional western ship modeling done for the newly restarting ship model meetings here in the San Francisco Bay Area, finally got back to finishing the sanding the sculling oars on my Atakebune model. I guess the model only needs 66 of them, but I’m sure I counted 72 in the kit. Maybe there are spares.

There’s more to do on these, as I’m thinking I’ll probably add the “heads” to them, or at least some of them that might end up visible if I leave any of the doors open in the box structure, or yagura.

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Building OcCre’s Spanish 74-gun Ship Montañes from Part Kits – Final

When I began the Montañes part kit project, I began fully aware that this was pretty well just a long term project that I’d work on from time to time, and that the cost of the Packs, as OcCre calls them, would be more than the cost of the complete kit. Unfortunately, I went online to consider again purchasing the second Pack and found that the pricing had changed considerably. The Packs have gone from about $110 each to $179 each. But, there is some savings in that OcCre has changed their shipping policy so that shipping is free for orders over 150€, about $164. So, the price of $179 for the pack is the shipped price, which before was about $130.

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The Return of Seawatch Books

Good news for scratch modelers! Seawatch Books, which brought us amazing titles by David Antscherl, Rob Napier, Gilbert McArdle, and others is back up and running under new ownership.

The previous owner, Bob Friedman, has been talking about his retirement for some time now, and earlier this year, the store went off-line pending sale to a new owner. Apparently, the early attempts at selling the company didn’t work out. But, then ship modeler Mike Ellison came along and saved the day, and the site just officially went live.

Perhaps one of the best known titles from Seawatch Books is the 4-volume series, The Fully Framed Model, HMN Swan Class Sloops 1767-1780.

To celebrate and to offer my support, I’ll probably pick up a title. Right now, I’m leaning toward either the book on building HMS Sussex, by Gilbert McArdle, or the two-volume series The Ketch Rigged Sloop Speedwell of 1752. Of course, I’ll post a write up about whatever I eventually get..

 

 

Will I ever get around to scratch building something based on one of these books? Who knows? But, it’s great “dream” material!

Check out the full range of their offerings at seawatchbooks.com. Ω

Building a Kit Without the Kit – Corel’s Misticque

Having been a ship modeler for around 30 years now, I have seen many models built and have built many myself. I’ve also spent a lot of time looking at the many available kits of beautiful looking ships of all kinds, and imagining building them. But, after building so many kits, I find the desire to scratch build a model. Now, I have scratch built quite a few models, mostly Japanese traditional boats, but also a few American subjects too, pilot boat, War of 1812 privateer, various hulls, etc. But, it seemed time to take on something more significant.

Now, kits still have the appeal of having already been planned out. Plus, they include all necessary decorative components. And, kits like those produced by Corel, still build into some of the most beautiful models.

Corel’s French Xebec Misticque, 1750

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Ship Modelers Meet Again at the Vallejo Museum, California

After a long hiatus, mostly fueled by the Covid pandemic, I organized a gathering of local ship modelers on Saturday, March 19th, at the Vallejo Naval and Historical Museum. This particular group used to meet quarterly at the museum, but haven’t gotten together in nearly 3 years.

In addition to 6 ships under construction or repair, two unstarted projects were presented. In addition, we had 3 special guests, including the new museum director, Melinda McCrary – for those that know the previous director, Jim Kern, he retired late last year. The other two guests were from a special project in Vallejo for teaching STEM skills to young people, which involves, among other things, building boats!

Our members come from as far west as Marin to as far east as Sacramento and Rocklin. We range from first time ship modelers, to experienced builders of large 3-masted warships. But, it’s not all about sailing ships. One of our members, Steve Cowdin, is the builder of two of the large battleship models currently on display at the U.S.S. Iowa Museum down in Los Angeles, as well as a restorer of the U.S.S. California model at the Vallejo Naval and Historical Museum.

U.S.S. California model.

Given that we traditionally meet only once every three months, our next gathering should be sometime in or around June. The amount of time should be enough to allow us all to make a little progress on our projects.

For me personally, I can definitely say that the meeting inspired and motivated me to make some good progress on my ship modeling projects. It even got me to pull out old projects to re-evaluate them and possibly resume one or two of them.

I’ll be looking forward to our next get together. But, in the meantime, a couple other local ship modeling clubs have resumed their in-person meetings, and I’ll be involved with those. I can only hope that those go as well as this one did.

By the way, if you’re in the area and are an active ship modeler and interested in coming to our get-togethers in Vallejo, be sure to leave a comment below, and I’ll add you to our group email list. Ω

HSPMS In-Person Meetings Restart

The Hyde Street Pier Model Shipwrights club is finally scheduled to start up their meetings again, though not aboard the Eureka, which is slated to head out for overhaul later this year…

Hyde Street Pier Model Shipwrights

There’s good news for the Hyde Street Pier Model Shipwrights. With things opening up again in San Francisco, we’re going to start our in-person meetings again!

The bad news is that the gangway on the Eureka has been pulled due to tidal conditions, plus it will be relocated for repair later this year, so we won’t be meeting aboard the Eureka any time soon. Instead we will be meeting at the Bathhouse building, otherwise known as the Maritime Museum building, with our first meeting scheduled for Saturday, March 26th.

Meeting from 2018

The building doesn’t officially open until 10am, but there will be someone to let us in early. Our Commodore, Paul Reck, says we’ll meet up in front of the building between 9am and 9:30am, and we’ll call someone to let us in.

This will be the first in-person meeting we’ve had in over a year. Hopefully, people…

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Artesania Latina’s Soleil Royal Now in Stock!

Artesania has really been working hard at releasing these new products ever since the new owners took over. I’ve always like Artesania Latina kits and found that go together very nicely. The fact that they only include digital copies of instruction and no printed plans sheet isn’t a problem for me, though I know that’s a problem for some.

What might be a problem though, is that this is true of older products that used to rely on the builder to take measurements from the plans. This might affect builders of kits like San Juan Nepomuceno and USF Constellation, etc. However, I expect those will be revised soon.

Ages of Sail

The 17th century French ship-of-the-line Le Soliel Royal was build as as a 104 gun warship name for the “Sun King”, King Louis XIV, and served as the flagship of Admiral Tourville. The “three decker” was built in 1669 and was one of the most powerful ships of her day. She was also among the most sumptuously decorated warships with wooden carvings paying tribute to the French monarch.

Artesania has recreated this ship in incredible detail with this big 1/72 scale wooden ship model kit that is replete with decorative fittings, particularly at the bow and stern. The kit features hundreds of laser-cut plywood and solid wood parts, cast and photo-etched metal fittings, as well as a full set of pre-sewn sails. To finish the model, the kit also comes with wooden base and metal nameplate, plus a set of 12 cast metal figures of the ship’s crew, ready to…

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Amati Gunboat “Arrow” Build – The Last Steps

As I mentioned in one of my ship modeling update posts, I haven’t done much rigging in quite some time, and heart just hasn’t been into it. So, it was a bit difficult for me to get back into the rigging of this model. And, for such a simple looking ship, it’s quite a lot of rigging. The ship, being lateen rigged, uses a set of backstays to support the masts, and each one requires two  two cleats. As there are 3 backstay pairs per mast, that’s 24 lines that have to get belayed to their own cleats, while balancing out the pendant blocks that are hanging in the air, so that their positioning is arranged to look visually pleasing.

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Building Woody Joe’s Atakebune Kit – Part 11

My build of Woody Joe’s Atakebune kit moves forward. The castle structure is mostly complete, and I’m starting to consider other modifications to the kit. After this, I’ll probably go back to finishing the modifications I started on the hull.

Wasen Mokei 和船模型

It’s time to finish the Atakebune’s castle structure. Basically, what’s left is to add the pieces that fit under the eaves of the roofs and also to install some edging pieces and then some final decorative details to the rooftops.

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