A Facebook Backwater of Model Shipbuilding

shipbuilder

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Here is my Facebook group. You do not need to be a member to view its content. It now has over 2,000 members showing a diverse collection of builds from tiny coastal sailing vessels to the most modern cruise ships, and everything inbetween, kits, scratchbuilt, card, 3D, computer design etc - except Warships! When I started the group, I felt that it would be yet anotherc "damp squib" as it is confined to peaceful commercial vessels, but it has gone from strength to strength with model images, videos and plans.
Bob
https://www.facebook.com/groups/1841532386133008/
 

shipbuilder

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Nigel,
Yes, I was quite surprised at the success of it all. I have been so accustomed over the years to eyes glazing over at the sight of a model merchant ship (if it wasn't a passenger liner), I thought it would just be another "flop." But members have flocked in from all over the world, with lots of them actively participating from the tiniest of scales up to the largest - Bob
 

shipbuilder

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Beautiful models Robert , as always
Thanks - On the Facebook Group, the models are built by many different members, I am only a small part of it. I think it is probably a unique site because it is merchant ships only, but for whatever reason, it is extremly popular, and very active across the whole world!
Bob
 

Jimsky

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Hello Bob. IMHO, popularity doesn't dictate by type of the ship. It must be well made and ketch your eyes. ;) Hey...you know better...
 

shipbuilder

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If you look on Ebay, hundreds and hundreds of Titanics, Victory's, Bounty's, Cutty Sark's etc, and none of them fetch very good prices because there are so many to choose from. Of the many models I have sold over the past 50 years or so, the poorer quality ones that I made years ago are now fetching the higher prices when they re-appear for sale. Take the, Clan Mactaggart, below, that I sold years ago for £400. It re-appeared in a London auction two or three years ago, and sold for over £3,800, despite not being anything special. In the days when I put my models on display, or exhbitions, they rarely got more than a casual glance from the general public, although collecters have always loved them. But sometimes, I think that most people can't tell the difference between good or bad models. My most successful model ever, (HMS Carcass, stuck in the ice) I threw together in 33 hours (including making the display case and carrying case. Not very detailed, as most of it was covered in snow and ice (see below). It sold for £780! Bidston Hill (See below) I sold in 1972 for £16, recently sold on Ebay for £400, and the buyer had to pay to have it shipped to the US from UK. When I sent him a picture of Donna Francisca (Attached) to show him how much I had improved, he said he couldn't see any difference in quality!o_O He wasn't interested, but I sold it to someone else who could tell the difference, for £600!. The thing that all the attached models have in common is that hardly anyone has ever heard of them. The quality of the build just doesn't seem to matter! Just my observations - I know very few will agree with me.

Donna Francisca 2.JPG



Bidston Hill Completed 1972 (Medium).jpg




HMS Carcass.jpg


Clan Mactaggart (Large).JPG
 

shipbuilder

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Not at all, I am afraid! There is nothing more depressing than to be told that what I build now is no better than what I produced years ago. Thousands of hours wasted improving on the quality of the models only to find out that very few can tell the difference between what I built then, and what I produce now!:( I took about ten days to build the Bidston Hill and weeks and weeks to build the Donna Francisca
which is infinitely superior - but as I said, to be told they are both "perfect in every detail" is very disheartening!
Bob
 

rwiederrich

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Not at all, I am afraid! There is nothing more depressing than to be told that what I build now is no better than what I produced years ago. Thousands of hours wasted improving on the quality of the models only to find out that very few can tell the difference between what I built then, and what I produce now!:( I took about ten days to build the Bidston Hill and weeks and weeks to build the Donna Francisca
which is infinitely superior - but as I said, to be told they are both "perfect in every detail" is very disheartening!
Bob

You've obviously improved on your skill and development of techniques that have decreased your time of construction. These advances in of themselves are praiseworthy. Try and look at it from a different perspective.....one, that says, your models have improved over time resulting in higher resale value of your *classics*.

A brand new Gibson guitar is made better then one 60 years old,,plays and sounds better too...but the *classic* will always sell at a higher resale.

The buyer never really knows the true extent of the value placed on the construction by the builder.

I'm impressed and I always will be....

Rob
 

shipbuilder

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Afraid you have got it the wrong way round. My skills have not decreased my building time, it is the reverse. As I said, the Bidston Hill was built in about ten days, The Donna Francisca took weeks and weeks! I now exercise greater care, so it takes me considerably longer to build a model. A model ship is not like a guitar in the fact that it does not improve over time., in fact its gets worse, the colours fade, bits come off, often because they are not looked after. Look at the one attached that I built about ten years ago. The owner left it in direct sunlight and didn't even notice what was hapenning to it over the years - If it had been kept out of direct sunlight, it would have been OK - I had an awful job refurbishing it - :( Bob

Braemar Castle sun damage.JPG

You've obviously improved on your skill and development of techniques that have decreased your time of construction. These advances in of themselves are praiseworthy. Try and look at it from a different perspective.....one, that says, your models have improved over time resulting in higher resale value of your *classics*.
 

rwiederrich

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Well, perception is everything. A quality guitar in the hands of an unappreciative/uneducated owner will deteriorate and fall apart just as easily as one of your wonderful miniatures...in similar hands. As evidenced by your own admission. That model that is 10 years old looks as impressive as any of your more recent models....IMHV.
It may take you longer these days because time has a way with our speed and dexterity (AGE). That is a difficult element to factor in when determining value.

Telescope making fall into a similar conundrum.

Rob(Fan)
 

shipbuilder

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I can still build them quickly if I want to - :), but they would be more like my old productions than when I take more care over them. My fingers are as supple as they always were. I thought that my modelmaking days might be over after the eye surgery on the 3rd of September last, but after three weeks, everything had gone back to normal again, vision-wise - I slow down in winter because some of the work has to be done outside Here I was working in the snow a few years ago - but I am not that keen anymore :cool: Bob



4 Bench in snow (Large).JPG
 
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