Armed Longboat - Model Shipways 1/24

Gventura

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#1
Hello all, this is my first build log and my first wood model. I've collected a few wood kits over the years but have always worked with plastic, decided to finally take the plunge a couple months ago and get started.

The kit I decided to start with is the Model Shipways Armed Longboat. I'm currently about half way through the build, but I wasn't a member until now so here we go.

So far it doesn't look bad, but had a decent amount of trouble planking the hull. I think it got better as it went, I started with the top 4, then the keep 4,then the middle 6. I was still trying out new techniques with each set so some parts of the hull looks better than others.

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All the wood has been conditioned and stained with natural wood color. The kit is supposed to be painted yellow ochre, but I think that's an ugly color so I haven't committed to painting yet, even if painting it would hide a number of my mistakes.

About to add in the thwart risers, the wood is soaking and about ready to be bent. A couple photos are attached of where I am.


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Uwek

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#2
Very good work for a first time planking job and wooden ship model.
I guess, that the same experience with planking we all made - I can tell you: it is getting better and easier with every plank and with every ship model
 

Gventura

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#5
Thanks, @Uwek & @BigMike the planking got better and it wasn't too terrible to sand down at the end, there were gaps that needed filling though.

@Maarten I probably should have started with a solid haul ship but I did a lot of reading that this kit was pretty good for novices, and I wanted a little more of a challenge.

In the meantime I've installed the seats and bits for the mast. Really happy with this area, everything lined up nicely and is spaced evenly.

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Everything came out pretty level across the seating, I did notice after everything dried that the seats on side are a tad higher than the other but I think that was due to haul construction since all the measurements are accurate. you can't really tell unless you look hard so I'm not that worried about, just a little disappointed since I started my haul at the top to try and avoid this issue. I had two full length strips so the inside rail supports for the seats are one piece and not broken up like in the instructions.

I've started on the seat supports, there's 7 to be done. I don't have a lathe, but im trying to figure out a way to do all of them other than by hand.

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The seat across from the mast holder looks like it's at an angle, but again all measurements are correct so either the photo is at a weird angle or the bulkhead isn't square.

After finishing the supports the next thing to do will be the top rail which I have to trace out and cut, haven't figured out how to do that yet.
 

Gventura

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#6
So I finished turning all of the supports for the chairs, I can see where it would have been really nice to spin them on a lathe and do some cool designs, but mine are rounded and stained so that will have to do.

I decided that like my risers, I wanted my top rail to be one solid strip opposed to two cut up pieces for each side as in the instructions so I went and picked a board from the local art supply and did the work. It required a fair more sanding than I had anticipated and cutting a 3/32 board was more difficult than I thought. But I got it done and installed.

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They aren't done, I had to fill some small gaps between the haul and the rail in a few places before I put down a primer.

While the cap rails dried I skipped ahead to doing the oars. Talk about a pain in the butt. Took me a day of sanding and measuring, and to be honest I'm not even sure they are thin enough yet. But I think they look good currently. I'll probably wait until I finish the Longboat, place them where they're supposed to go and see if they need to be thinned some more before staining/painting.

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Looking ahead the instructions want to have the the area between the cap rails and the bumper rail (which hasn't been installed yet) painted red and then the photo etch will eventually be glued over it. Considering painting it white instead, gluing the photo etch on and painting over everything red, that should allow for the design to show through a crisp white when I remove the etch at the end. Or I could just be asking for a lot of unnecessary trouble.

Anyway, next up is the final set of outer rails and some little fitting in and around the cap rail.
 

Gventura

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#7
So it turns out I was a little ahead of myself with the outer rail. I had to carve the windlass, which I think turned out pretty well.

So here is the windlass installed as well as the interior hull fittings. The cap rails and hull fittings were primed with Mr. Surfacer and sanded down.

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Here is where I realized just how off the planking is at the top. Because I didn't use a single strip like I did with the cap rail, the plank seems to dip downward to the point where it was cut and then goes back up. This is evident with the fittings, the fittings that go between the cap rail and the seats are nearly flush at the bow and stern but have a gap in center. Unfortunately, something to keep in mind in the future but it's structural and not a lot I could do about it now.

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After carving the windlass and installing everything above I also installed the lifting rings and hinges. The handles for the windlass are also done, but haven't been painted red yet, they also aren't installed because I need to prep the haul for painting.

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I used mr. Surfacer again here. Filled in the gaps nicely, and sanded that down to clean it up. I think the water line is rather even on both sides, at least at the moment.

Next up is fitting the eyebolts and the cannon mounts so that I can paint the cap rails red. Then a nice coat of red on all the primed areas and putting the rub rails in.

I had lost the mast bracket, but Model Shipways got me a replacement in less than 4 days, great customer service as well. If I was actually at the point I thought I was going to be at this weekend (installing the rub rail and mast) then I would have been very happy.
 

Gventura

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#9
Progress being made!

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Since the last post a number of things have been done, most obviously all of the painting of the hull and fittings. There is some touch up needed in areas where white overflowed but that's easy enough once it's dried.

The oarlocks are dry fitted at the moment, still working on alignment and the tops of them need a little more flattening I think. The windlass is done and painted, just have to trim and glue in place the handles. The instructions and the photos show the handles in different places at different times, this is probably the configuration I'm going to go with when I'm done.

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So the rub rail has been cut, bent, and installed.

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Made a mistake when I was making the rails, didn't realize how much of the detail got sanded off when I was working them up to prime, so I had to sand them smooth because they looked weird otherwise.

It took a number of coats of each color to get the nice uniform color in the photos. I used the paint from model expo that is specific to the kit. Not sure there's anything special about these paints, probably could have used my Vallejo set if I wanted, especially since everything was primed with Mr. Surfacer. Speaking of which I think the haul turned out rather nice.

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Mr. Surfacer blended well with the wood filler I had to use in a number of places. The waterline isn't perfect but it's a learning process. I just couldn't get it perfectly even.

Next up is finishing the oar locks and carving out the rudder position from the rub rail.

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And touching up the paint everywhere. Once it's carved then the while rudder will need to be carved and completed before moving on to the mast and all the fun of that.

On a side note, I can't help but feel like the entire longship lists to one side.

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Gventura

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#11
Outstanding work I've tossed around the idea of building this vessel. This build makes me want to build it even more
Thanks! It's a good build, pretty straight forward I think. So this one I'm working on is the model Shipways version but there's also model Shipways/ Syren version that I just found out about. From what I can tell that one is even better, and comes with a framing jig which I could have really used on mine. It's also in alsakian cedar I believe which is a wonderful color.

https://www.syrenshipmodelcompany.com/medway-longboat-1742.php
 

Gventura

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Well, not much has been done since my last post, except finishing the rudder.

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It's far from perfect but it looks good from the side. Now I didn't attach it with the basic stuff that comes with the kit, a couple months back I bought some stuff from Syren Shipmodel Co. for a different build (a rattlesnake that I ended up selling because I want a different scale).

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Everything that comes from Syren is quality, let me tell you. But I had so much trouble with this set, and it's all my own fault. Too much glue in too many places caused places to fill in, things to be damaged, and it was rather frustrating. The worst part was the top of the rudder

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It doesn't come across in the photo because I think I was able to hide it pretty well but I couldn't get the hinge to attach to the transom. I don't know if my rudder wasn't flush or if I attached the hinge wrong, but the bottom hinge was perfect and the top had to be pinned against the transom and glued multiple times, it's ugly. And worse the rudder doesn't move, which was the whole point of using this set. Rough times.

But the bottom worked out great, looks sweet.

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Only real complaint that I have of the finish is I somehow missed the top red line by a little bit. So when you look at it straight it isn't flush.

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I could probably retape and try and paint but the top hinge has already broken on me three times and so I think I'll just leave it be. As it is I still have to install/make the handle for the rudder, so I'm sure the hinge will break a couple more times on me.

The main reason this build really slowed down was because I'm getting a lathe. And I wanted to wait to do all the masting until I could probably taper the dowels. I should be getting that this week, it's part of an order I did for tools I need for the Blandford CS build. Once I pick that up I'll get on the masting and probably finish this build up by the end of the month.

I'll also need to revisit the oars here pretty soon. I still think they're too thick.
 

Gventura

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#14
I feel like I've neglected my poor Longboat. Between getting the materials for the Blandford build in and it being cold and not wanting to use the lathe outside I really haven't gotten a lot done.

But yesterday I finished the last piece of the rudder.

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Carved it as the instructions outlined. Unfortunately it doesn't have as much of a curve as I had hoped, I think I started carving on the wrong end. But I was able to sand it down to fit in perfectly, I haven't glued it yet. It's also been treated and stained already.

My next update will be whenever I get to carving the mast, whether that be via lathe or by hand. I want to finish this before the Blandford gets out of hand.
 

Gventura

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#16
And I'm back. It's been about a month since I last worked on the Longboat, due to being side tracked by the Blandford build, which was going pretty well until I ran into some scaling issues. So while that all gets sorted out I've decided to come back to this and start wrapping it up.

When I left I needed to do work on the mast and subsequent dowel works, I had planned on waiting until it got warmer but since it isn't getting any warmer (-4 last night), I instead went and got a WEN workshop filter for the dust (as seen in a couple of the photos) to filter out my space. I think it works pretty well, though its only been a couple days.

Anyway, this update is quick as I've already done more than this but didn't take any pictures.

I was able to shape the gaff, boom, and bowsprit on the lathe. This was my first time working on a lathe in a very long time, it was like starting over. So while the shapes are not perfect, I'm rather happy with the outcome.


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Now the only problem I had was that the mast at 15" was too big for my lathe, so I had to carve the step and tapper by hand. The carving wasn't bad, the sanding of 3 inches is the worst.

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One of the things that has changed since the last I worked on this boat is I picked up a few new tools that were needed for the blandford build. Now I know I could have done the step on the milling machine but I'm not that experienced with the machine yet and didn't want to do something like that just yet. So I only used it to create the false sheave, in both the mast and bowsprit.

What I don't have photos of is all of these things have been treated, stained, primed/filled with Mr. Surfacer like the hull, and painted the matching red.

Next is putting the hole in the the gaff, which I missed in the instructions and start attaching all of these things to the longboat. Those are the photos that will follow.

Then the fun of rigging follows.
 
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Gventura

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#17
So the primer and double coat of paint dried on everything so it was time for a dry fit. Everything but one thing fit properly. The boom ring that sits on the mast and allows the boom to hook onto the mast was too small to fit. Which is rather confusing since the mast already looks to thin for the rest of the attachments, and all the other attachments that go on the mast fit just fine. So I had to cut the ring, and I'm going to have to glue/add in some extra *something* to make it look whole. Otherwise no real issues. The bowsprit was a little tight fitting and that damaged some of the paint, but once it was installed it was nothing a little touch up couldn't fix.

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The longboat really is a good size.

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The oar holders are going to need some work with the dremmel, they still look too tall and aren't a uniform size on the tops I don't think. Personally I like the natural wood stain color better than painting the entire thing the ugly ochre color. This natural stain isn't as nice as the Alaskan cedar that Syren uses for his version, but good enough for my first go around.

This weekend will be about fitting all the remaining fittings, doing paint touch ups, and finishing the oars. I ordered the rope walk from Syren and am currently debating whether I want to wait for that to make my own rope for this, or use the standard rope that came with the kit. This is my first rigging so I may just use the standard stuff, plus I don't think I want to wait until next week to get started on the rigging.We'll see what happens.
 
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Gventura

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#18
Busy day today. Did a lot of little bits.

First up was fixing the issue I had with the boom ring. As you can see there's a pretty big gap after I cut and fit the ring in place. So I glued the ring in and I went to fill it. I used the replacement parts on the rudder so I still had the original rudder attachments, which happened to be the same thickness as this ring, so I cut out a piece, put it in place, used thin and thick CA glue to fill in the gaps and paint over it.
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I think it looks good. You can barely tell the difference once its painted.

Then I attached the deadeyes to the side of the boat.

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The kit didn't come with nails, or I lost them, so I had to borrow some nails from a different kit, those nails turned out to be a tad longer than anticipated but everything went together right after some small adjustments.

Also put together the mast, which isn't glued in place, but the mast irons are glued and painted in place. That seems to all gone together fine.

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I did some sanding on the oar holders, to try and even those out a bit, turns out those are pretty fragile. After breaking one I decided to leave those be. After some small touch ups, it's time to move on to the standing rigging. I started with the first deadeye and seizing. Which I may or may not have done correctly.

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So originally I was confused, the sheet had the clove hitch next to the seizing knot chart and I didn't realize they were two different things until after I finished my first deadeye lol, so now I know how to make a tiny clove hitch and my deadeye has some weird seizing on it. Oh well. On to the rest.
 

Gventura

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Good progress this weekend, everything I wanted except work on the oars. I completed the seizing on all five of the deadeyes I'm going to be needing.

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They aren't perfect but I"m happy with them. It's a little difficult to see because its black rope on black rope but each has seizing in three places along the way. After finishing that I moved on to the first line for rigging. As I start doing rigging I'm using two sources, the plans that were provided and the book Rigging Period Ship Models: A Step-by-Step Guide to the Intracacies of Square-Rig by Lennarth Peterson. The only issue with the book is it only shows location of the lines not how to tie them off or the specifics. But location of the lines is very helpful. If I haven't mentioned it before the scale on the plans provided by Model Shipways is off, its at 1.2 inches, so it hasn't been as helpful with locating the position of certain holes and such throughout the boat.

It took a couple hours of fiddling around, but I completed my first line here.

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The rope line that came with the kit isn't great. It doesn't feel like thread but more like plastic. So I switched out the tan rope with some that I had on hand that is a little thicker and a little darker and made of thread. It made the threading a lot easier. The spacing here is supposed to be an inch, I think this is pretty close to an inch, its been secured to the step in the mast with a clove hitch, no glue involved yet. Three more of these to go, plus the one on the bow. I imagine this is a alternating sides type of situation, to keep the mast centered; and finally completing the bow.

Originally the black rope line was supposed to be 16 inches, I cut it a little extra since I knew I would need more, but I think I'm still going to be short. Looking at the amount hanging off the end lashed to the mast it doesn't seem as long as in the photos. That end will need an eyeblock to finish up the rigging on the back end, I have plenty of tan rope so it may just be a matter of making that longer than in the instructions.
 
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Gventura

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#20
Finished up the standing rigging

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Of course mistakes were made, including how the tan rope was tied off, I only did it correctly once, on the bowline, but you live and learn. I think the clove hitches atop the mast came out correctly, again still no glue up there, want to let it sit for a time to make sure everything comes out correctly. But so far the mast seems centered and well.

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They look pretty good I think.

I had to paint a couple pieces so while I wait for those to dry and I moved on to bending the hooks I'm going to be needing for the next part of the rigging. These are bent to form and cut.

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The two look pretty uniform, it only took two tries to get there. Anyway, as long as the parts are dry moving on to the running rigging.
 
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