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My FIRST ship build: La Couronne Corel/scratch

DARIVS ARCHITECTVS

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Jan 1, 2018
Messages
127
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Location
Ramsey, Minnesota, USA
Hello everyone!

Like my father before me, I sailed merchant ships as an Engineering Officer, and have always loved square riggers. After eight years living aboard ship, seawater still flows in my veins twenty-five years later. I built several plastic ones as a boy, and now am returning to the hobby decades later, this time with experience in medieval weapon and armour smithing, carpentry, machining and other trade skills. A decision had to be made as to which era of sailing ship to choose.

The 17th century royal great ships peaked my interest because of their embellishment and style, set apart from the advanced, refined warships of the Lord Admiral Nelson's time. So, the first ship, what I consider my training vessel, is La Couronne c. 1636. It's an ambitious ship for a novice such as myself. EJ's La Couronne build on the Nautical Research Guild was an inspiration, and his build log serves me well as a guide, since plans alone are not sufficient for a first time project. I also purchased Deagostini's Sovereign of the Seas, all packages, and am saving that for building closer to retirement in 10-13 years. The challenge of the small scale of 1:100 of La Couronne is rather high, trying to include the level of detail I desire, plus the addition of either full or battle sails. Silkspan is the material that is planned to used for the sails. I hope I don't tear them to ribbons in the process! A ship isn't complete without sails, no matter that they block some of the view of the deck equipment.

La Couronne so far is about 50% done, with the additions of: properly scaled 18 pound, 9 pound, and 6 pound bronze cannons, use of Falkonet small 2mm blocks instead of the monster blocks supplied with the kit, cannon carriages of walnut instead of dummy barrels, internal circuit board with flickering candle effect LED lights for upper gun deck, stern and side galleries and turrets, and of course, stern lanterns. Below is a link to 264 photos (and growing) of the progress of the build, every step of the way, all numbered to allow one to see the progress in order.

I would treasure your comments and suggestions on how to steer this build in the direction of perfection, or questions as how features of this model were chosen and performed. All of you who have posted your own builds have unwittingly educated me in this build every step of the way.

Best wishes!

Kurt Suleski
DARIVS ARCHITECTVS (Latin for Darius the Engineer)

La Couronne Build Photos

 
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DARIVS ARCHITECTVS

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Joined
Jan 1, 2018
Messages
127
Points
133

Location
Ramsey, Minnesota, USA
I certainly will, gentlemen! I managed to upload all pictures of the build into three albums on this site.
Question: Where to put the ships bell. I think it should be at the center of the rail above the bridge deck, but Mantua's model has it at the center of the rail at the rear of the foc'sle. Opinions?
 
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DARIVS ARCHITECTVS

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Jan 1, 2018
Messages
127
Points
133

Location
Ramsey, Minnesota, USA
Hi Darius,

As far as I have seen on English ships the bell is placed on the aft end of the fore castle deck.
On French ships its mostly on the aft side of the half deck. As la couronne being a french vessel I wpuld put it there.
Thanks Maarten!

Gentlemen, here is today's progress:
Install gun port lids on all stern guns and started fitting the rear towers on the stern gallery. Of course I had to test the internal lights again because they are cool.

265 Make Eight Stern Port Covers .jpg266 Upper Four Port Covers Ready.jpg267 Install Upper Stern Port Covers.jpg268 Prepare to Install Lower Stern Port Covers.jpg269 Install Lower Four Stern Port Covers.jpg270 Fashion Bulkheads Joining Rear Towers.jpg271 Test Fit Rear Towers - Internal Lights On.jpg272 Rear Towers Look Good So Far - Lights On.jpg
 

DARIVS ARCHITECTVS

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Joined
Jan 1, 2018
Messages
127
Points
133

Location
Ramsey, Minnesota, USA
Progress 8 April 2019. Install glass in windows of stern gallery forward towers. Glass is made from clear plastic taken from purchased tool packaging and scribed with a razor knife and straight edge. Scribe lines are darkened with black acrylic paint, with excess removed with moistened toilet paper. Windows are set in place with small application of CA glue at the corners. Added 0.5mm thick x2mm wide sapelle wood strips as trim for the bow turrets. Penciled in outlines of the windows to prepare cutting them our with a bullet shaped coarse diamond bit in a Dremel tool, just like the previous towers. Wood towers are made from 1mm thick mohagany sheet. Yellow LED's will illuminate the towers and turrets

275 Trim on Bow Towers.jpg

276 Draw Windows on Bow Towers.jpg

274 Glass in Stern Gallery Fwd Towers.jpg
 
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Uwek

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Blandford Group Build
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I am very happy, that you decided to show us your built here in a building log - Very good work until now - many thanks for sharing with us
 

DARIVS ARCHITECTVS

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2018
Messages
127
Points
133

Location
Ramsey, Minnesota, USA
What was the function of the stern towers on the real ship?
The stern gallery of the St. Louis and La Couronne were designed to convey strength using architectural motifs. The towers and the rear balcony (similar to a bridge) are very old symbols. A Roman arrow throwing catapulta even had towers and bastions on the front of the siege engine on an embossed bronze plate for the same reason.
 

DARIVS ARCHITECTVS

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Joined
Jan 1, 2018
Messages
127
Points
133

Location
Ramsey, Minnesota, USA
Did some work on the rearmost gallery tower bells. Decided that blue and gold was the way to go. Needed some detail, so added brass wire for contrast, and bought a bunch of brass plated crowns for each tower top. Test fitted after assembly. When all stern gallery towers are ready, a hole will be cut through the hull on both sides for the wiring and LED lights, and the LED's will be arranged inside the enclosure between the two towers on each side of the ship, such that light streams through the towers to the outside. For a 1:100 scale shape, the threshold at which you limit the details is much smaller that on a larger, 1 meter long model, and I have to choose how much detail is worth installing. Making an entire stern gallery interior for this ship would largely go unappreciated. Fat fingers also have their limits. Besides, I have to save up some enthusiasm for the Deagostini Sovereign of the Seas I have it two big boxes awaiting construction next.
284 Layout Lines on Cones for Shaping.jpg285 Sand Cones to Hex Shape by Hand.jpg286 Stain Tower Top Blue.jpg287 Glue Brass Wire to Facet Edges.jpg288 Add Crown and Test Fit.jpg
 

DARIVS ARCHITECTVS

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2018
Messages
127
Points
133

Location
Ramsey, Minnesota, USA
The last 48 hours were devoted to getting a part of the ship that always had me concerned with regard to how well it would turn out; the stern and side galleries. After finishing the towers, including the two bow towers, it was time to tackle the side galleries. One of the 6 circuits off the lighting control board was reserved for the side gallery lights. All the light circuits were programmed to flicker little, simulating torch or lamp light. It sort of brings a little life to an otherwise static model. I wish I had the talent to make human figures, because Doris Obručová's HMS Sovereign of the Seas is a living ship, with lots of human figures (plus a dog) shown actively doing things on the ship. Sadly, 1:100 scale sailor figures are quite rare, having only found 15 1770's American sailor figures available in my search.

But I digress. The side galleries are done! The lighting is nice. I went with blue roofs on the side galleries, and the railings on the fore peak will be changed to be more similar to Dutch style. There are more details to add to the stern besides the rudder, and all the deck details like railings and posts need to be done. I have to fight the ever-present urge to rush things. Best to slow and super-detail everything I can, because the end result will be worth it.

292 Hollow Out Side Gallery Frames.jpg293 Add Bulkheads to Forward Stern Gallery Towers.jpg294 Attach Rear Towers and Rig Lighting.jpg
293 Add Forward Stern Tower.jpg295 Looking Good So Far.jpg296 Plank Side Gallery Roof.jpg297 Planking Side Gallery.jpg298 Looking Good with Lighting.jpg299 Build Stbd Side Gallery.jpg300 Stbd Side Gallery Done.jpg
 
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