Thanks for all the likes folks. They cheer me up. @Steef66: You really should give it a try. The biggest issue is finding the best material, but if you fail once or twice, who cares. It didn't cost you more than a few euros and you will learn a lot.
@txn4lyf: Indeed it is hard to see what material is used. It's all phony...
Next time I will show the standing rigging. Every time I do that job I am amazed by the sturdiness of the construction and how much stress a paper hull can stand.
You will see for yourself in my next livery.
The right address to order the material is: DC-Fix (www.d-c-fix.com) and it's a German product, made by Conrad Hornschuch AG, Salinenstrasse 1, 74679 Weissbach, Germany. In Holland you can buy it in any builder's merchant and the cost is low: 5 Euros for several meters. I can plank 6 or 7 ships, depending of the size of the model, with one unit. You will have to cut the strips yourself....
This is day 45 of the build of this model and today I finished the standing rigging.
Many people asked how the deadeyes were attached to the hull. It's a simple process, ending up in amazingly strong support for the shrouds. I start with twisting my deadeyes (which is made of three paper disks glued together with the smallest and thickest one in the middle) with a length of thin wire. After the deadeye is secured with the wire, I use a piece of scrap metal with a various width to accommodate the different lenghts of the loops. The wire is twisted for the second time. Now the deadeye is placed in the slot of the channel. A hole is drilled in the wale and the twisted part of the wire is inserted into it. Then a drop of AC glue does the rest. Even though the channel is only made of 1 mm thick card I was never able to pull the deadeye loose or damaging the channels by pulling the laniards as hard as I could. I know in reality there were two links, but for me this looks convincing enough. I finish off with a small strip of black paper, glued to the hull underneath the link, 'secured' by two small disks to imitate bolt heads.
5 paper strip
6 paper disk.
The rest of the blocks is simply a repetitive job, in which (I must confess) I find a lot of peace of mind.
Here is what is needed for a simple fluit model. I did not photograph all the blocks for the pinas, but believe me, they were more.
For me part of the trick in preparing the standing rigging is to do as much work as possible before the masts are stepped. All the shrouds for the top masts and topgallant masts are done in a vice and also the halliards for every sail are added to the masts. This helps me to get the job done without a repeating visit to my physiotherapist. (Please ignore the mess on my working table. I only 'lose' things after I cleaned up)
The backside of the system is the loose hanging chain plates, hanging from the tops, waiting to be attached to the shrouds below. I usually bind them together and fix them to the upper shrouds, because they are terribly in the way when installing the shrouds.
Rigging a mast begins with the tackles, which are located at the channels, right behind the deadeyes. They come in pairs: two with violin blocks and two with double sheaves next to each other. Once the mast is stepped and secured this way, the rope that carries the lower yard and its ram's head are installed.
Then the shrouds are tied to the dead-eyes. Care has to be taken that the stress on the shrouds does not make the mast lean over.
Next the ratlines are added. To prevent the tackles to become tied to the shrouds I place a piece of card between them, on which I mark the distances between the ratlines. Once a mast is done, the stays can be installed. Care has to be taken not to pull them too tight, because other lines can become loose hanging. It is wise anyway to leave all the lines in a temporary situation until all lines are installed, so that in the end everything can be tightened as it should.
As you can see I leave the deadeyes and the ratlines white until everything is finished, just because I can see it better during working. The ratlines I do with white thread. Once all is in place I paint both the deadeyes and the ratlines, first with aniline on acetone basis and later, to get the color right, with dark brown oil paint. If all is the way it should be, I can start preparing the sails and the running rigging.
I was lucky over the latest few weeks that the weather was rather bad, but the forecast predicts better weather, which will certainly slow down my speed of production, because my wife wants to make tours with our electric bikes. There is a downside to everything...
Well, the weather went back to what it was all summer here, which is lousy. The good part is that I can go back building again, the wife satisfied with a few nice bike tours in our lovely country. Incredible how a bike brings you to locations you would never have seen if you are stuck in your car. A perfect counrty for biking, with hardly any slopes...
We are in day 54 of this build now and I succeeded in bringing the sails to their planned locations.
It starts with making the yards. They are made from square strips which are planed to shape with a small Stanley plane. First I file them to their ultimate dimensions and then they are planed octagonally and finally rounded with a file. Nothing spectacular.
Here you can see the sequence of sail-making I use:
To the top-left you can see the bolt-ropes glued to the fabric with white glue. On the sail below the sail is cut and the lines are drawn with a pencil to suggest the cloths the sail was composed of. The 'ears' at the top corners are glued with white glue. I know the bonnet should be attached to the sails with nooses, but in my experience they work not well in comparison to the detailing of the rest of the model, so I simply suggest them with glued lengths of rope.
In the middel below the sail is marled to the yard. In reality sails were not marled for as far as I know, but bound to the yard with short pieces of rope. Maybe any of the readers knows? Marling is a very good replacement anyway.
To the right the beginning of the last preparation is shown: blocks are attached and all the necessary rope-work is added (not completely finished here). Clews and buntlines, lower sheets, tacks and the bridles for the bow-lines are all added.
The small sail in the top-middle is an example of the reduced sail I make for folded sails. I planned the sails of the bowsprit, the topgallants and the mizzen topsail to be shown in a folded state. To avoid too thick a folded sail I simply reduce the size, keeping the corners as they were, as the sheets and clews have to be attached. I will have to do some experiments to improve the effect.
The next stage is hanging the sails in the masts, which are prepared in a way that all the halliards for the yards are already in position. Ropes for the lifts are running from the top caps. Only the bowlines and the braces will be added in the last stage of the building proces.
This all is a reasonable speedy method. Hanging the sails only took me two days, which left me with this stage:
It looks rather complete now, but the real challenge will be to give the sails their function by bracing them and fill them with the necessary winds. Bowlines will help as well, but first I have to get rid of all the long loose hanging lines, which are belayed on deck (or elsewhere) or will be soon. In my experience I know the clews should be belayed lastly, because their stress changes with the setting of the sails.
Many models I see are left more or less in the position shown here. I think that is a pity. Just like flags give the ship its identity, working sails shows the ship in a situation with wind and water, as can be seen in some new photoshop 'paintings' Emiel, my son made from my models:
I hope to show what I mean on this model next time, although a lot of loose ends will have to be fixed still.