HM Cutter Lady Nelson 1803 - Scale 1:64, Victory Models by Glbarlow [COMPLETED BUILD]

Joined
Dec 29, 2020
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Just recording progress at this point, if anyone has any questions please feel free to reply.

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Since the last update I’ve added the channels and deadeyes and made the transition to the cutter’s final home. A step I always take prior to beginning rigging as I need the ship steady and looking like it will look on my shelf. I prepare for this step at the very beginning as is noted in my earliest posts by drilling the 2mm hole in the keel and matching it up to brass wire and pedestals on a 12 inch walnut display board. This always pays off in making the mounting so much easier. I’ll confess the 3mm keel had me a little concerned, I always used threaded bars for the extra grip. I see no need for the elaborate nuts and bolts built into the keel I see some modelers use, I haven’t had one come off the base yet. However this time I couldn’t find something threaded so small so I had to use smooth brass. I need'nt have been concerned, the JB Weld Clear epoxy mix I used, properly applied and allowed to cure has melded the boat, wire, pedestals and board into a single entity. The big challenge is to make sure the boat is level on the stand before it sets. I have a number of line and small levels to match the boat, board, and surface its sitting on are all equally level. I should have taken a photo, but I’m sure its clear.

View attachment 140890

Weird angle in this photo. The cannons are now mounted and the rigging has begun. I’m only adding breech ropes for this model, the small 4 pounders are just too little for me to rig and have any semblance of scale. I learned the trick of using an awl to split the rope and create a loop with white glue from my Cheerful instructions, it works great at simulating the seizing. I know the breeching lines are going to be shorter than they should, I also didn't add the necessary eye bolt to the carriage though in retrospect I maybe wish I had, oh well. NOTE: Only the forward three on the starboard side are done, the others are temporarily pulled tight to be out of the way and to allow the seizing to dry on the cannon until I get to them.

View attachment 140891

So my work area converts to my rigging box. I’m using Warner blocks and Syren Ship Company rope. Probably the last time for the Warner blocks, though far superior to the junk blocks in kits the Syren product is another level better. The only problem is I work in millimeters and all the Syren Stuff is Imperial. Why the US hasn’t converted is beyond me, 3mm makes so much more since than 3/32.

After rigging the cannon its time to make the main mast, yards and boom. The bow sprit is already done and rigged but will be the near last thing I install - cutters have long bowsprits and not a lot of rigging to hold them.
Just recording progress at this point, if anyone has any questions please feel free to reply.

View attachment 140889

Since the last update I’ve added the channels and deadeyes and made the transition to the cutter’s final home. A step I always take prior to beginning rigging as I need the ship steady and looking like it will look on my shelf. I prepare for this step at the very beginning as is noted in my earliest posts by drilling the 2mm hole in the keel and matching it up to brass wire and pedestals on a 12 inch walnut display board. This always pays off in making the mounting so much easier. I’ll confess the 3mm keel had me a little concerned, I always used threaded bars for the extra grip. I see no need for the elaborate nuts and bolts built into the keel I see some modelers use, I haven’t had one come off the base yet. However this time I couldn’t find something threaded so small so I had to use smooth brass. I need'nt have been concerned, the JB Weld Clear epoxy mix I used, properly applied and allowed to cure has melded the boat, wire, pedestals and board into a single entity. The big challenge is to make sure the boat is level on the stand before it sets. I have a number of line and small levels to match the boat, board, and surface its sitting on are all equally level. I should have taken a photo, but I’m sure its clear.

View attachment 140890

Weird angle in this photo. The cannons are now mounted and the rigging has begun. I’m only adding breech ropes for this model, the small 4 pounders are just too little for me to rig and have any semblance of scale. I learned the trick of using an awl to split the rope and create a loop with white glue from my Cheerful instructions, it works great at simulating the seizing. I know the breeching lines are going to be shorter than they should, I also didn't add the necessary eye bolt to the carriage though in retrospect I maybe wish I had, oh well. NOTE: Only the forward three on the starboard side are done, the others are temporarily pulled tight to be out of the way and to allow the seizing to dry on the cannon until I get to them.

View attachment 140891

So my work area converts to my rigging box. I’m using Warner blocks and Syren Ship Company rope. Probably the last time for the Warner blocks, though far superior to the junk blocks in kits the Syren product is another level better. The only problem is I work in millimeters and all the Syren Stuff is Imperial. Why the US hasn’t converted is beyond me, 3mm makes so much more since than 3/32.

After rigging the cannon its time to make the main mast, yards and boom. The bow sprit is already done and rigged but will be the near last thing I install - cutters have long bowsprits and not a lot of rigging to hold them.
The kit came with little rings for the cannon and carriage. Not sure what you are suppose to do with them
 
Joined
Dec 29, 2020
Messages
61
Points
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My back to basics kit after a multi-year layoff from modeling is finished. It's semi-scratch built as most of the kit walnut was replaced and the deck furniture scratch built (other than the winch). I added a good deal of rigging, likely not historically accurate, but it wasn't a real ship so... I enjoyed using Chuck's Passaro's blocks and ropes throughout the model. It was fun, took just 3 months, and energized me to take up modeling again. It was coincidence that with recent events I had lots of home time to build.

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My log is done.
How does one install the eyelet rings. They have such a small diameter you can’t drill an appropriate size hole
 

Heinrich

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Bluenose Moderator
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I do not think Glenn Barlow is a member of SOS anymore.
 
Joined
Dec 29, 2020
Messages
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Here are some photos of the completed hull (including dry-fitted swivel guns). It's rigging time... I normally do a better job of the photography this is a bit of a rush and my computer is not happy at the moment. So clearly the colors are off but you get the idea.

This kit has some scale issues, the swivel guns seem to be larger than the cannon .... :-/

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Did you glue the cannon carriages to the deck
 
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Dec 29, 2019
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I don’t think Glenn is on here anymore but yes you must either glue the carriages to the deck or a better way is to pin them so you don’t see any glue near the wheels
 
Joined
Sep 25, 2020
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So here’s where I am - starboard complete. I’m pleased with the result. The ship has one coat of water based Matte poly just to keep it clean and tight, it will be sanded before being painted later.

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To be clear, I take no credit for this method. I researched a new way of planking that fit my style of working (fast, without battens and without pins, using CA) and found it in Chuck Passaro’s method. I followed the .pdf he has posted on Model Ship World at Lining Off your hull for planking.pdf I’ve learned there is some tension between the two sites, but I’m not part of that. I enjoy reading and sharing on both. There are also some videos including a recording of Chuck at a workshop - in that video he does things much simpler maybe less precise than in the .pdf that get the same result, I used those, no french curves for me. As it is it took me several days to get this small ship planked.

I’ve always done something similar with measuring and determining where to begin tapering, but it was a lot more ad-hoc. That part of my process has worked, I’m built some nice ships doing it. What is really different and game-changing for me is his plank bending method. I’m not going to go through it all in detail, you can read the .pdf, but I want to share a bit of it in hopes that a beginner might be inspired enough to learn more. The headline is no soaking and no twisting to fit.

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First there is taking the time to do the planning - using tick strips (I just stuck a few on here for the photo) to take measurements at each bulkhead, counting the number of strips at the widest point and converting that to the ships hull at bow and stern. Chuck used fan strip, I prefer a calculator. If its seven 4mm strips at midships, using the tick strips to get distance I determined it has to become 2.5mm at the bow. This is tedious work, but worth it. Because it was here I learned my first error in my old ways. I was starting the taper too soon, I learned through measuring in detail that I didn’t need to taper (on this particular hull, it will obviously vary) until midway between bulkhead 2 and 3, and not at all to the stern. That got me a much more even and consistent look.

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Dividing the hull in half and determining the “line” I wanted the planks to follow (3 or 4 bands for a bigger model) allowed me to be more precise and get a cleaner look instead of ad-hoc figuring it out as I went.

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All well and good, but here’s the fun part - quick and easy “bending the wrong way” using my personal plank bending station. Consisting of a raised board three clamps, three pieces of thin wood - two for preventing clamp marks and one to set the point of the curve, and one inexpensive steam travel iron.

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Placing the strip on the hull at the beginning of the taper point and bending it to the bow with my fingers (no glue) produces a curve, the apex of that curve is the bending point. Mark it and put that center on the middle of the clamp then gently pull down and clamp on both sides. I broke only one plank, the strip wood had more elasticity than I would have thought. I DID NOT soak the strips in water. I put my finger in water and ran it over the wood then “ironed” the strip for several seconds. Let it cool for a minute and you have a curved plank.

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I then just kept track of my measurements, I did redo them a few times on the lower half, 4mm planks aren’t a perfect fit so I ripped two to 3mm each to fill the gap (and not have one super skinny). It still was a lot easier adjusting for the final pieces. Most importantly the planks, while it looks odd in a two dimensional photo, fit flush to the hull and its double curve by adding the downward bend in the tapered plank. Again, no soaking, no bending no twisting. I used drops of CA, first gluing it tight at the bow, then just 1-2 bulkheads at a time. I had roughed up the 1st planking with 100 grit sandpaper to help with adherence.

The message is plan the work, do the work, take your time, make adjustments when needed, don't force wood to be something it's not, help it learn to be a hull plank and not a strip of wood.

Here I will admit my major error, or the error the instructions led me to do - that’s attaching the sternpost when I built the frame. It would all be so much easier at the stern to not install that until after the second planking. It wasn’t a show-stopper, it just made fitting the lower band of planks harder since they had to be cut to fit precisely at the stern post. On my next model I’ll not install the sternpost until after all the planking is done. I knew that…it was one of those things I forgot in my three year layoff.

I hope I'm adding some value here and that someday it will help a beginning builder. The Lady Nelson isn't a sexy build, but it requires all the basics necessary for any model no matter is Nelson or Cochrane sailed on it or not.

On to the next step…
Wish I had seen your build log and plank bending methodology before commencing my own first build, also Lady Nelson. Definitely some added value here. Many thanks.
 
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