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Bottled Ship Builder

Lubber123

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Everything posted by Lubber123

  1. Finally finished rigging the model. I added the Martindale rigging that wasn't called for in the instructions but that is about the extent of my imbellishments. The rigging instructions involve a convoluted process of tying down one side of the yard while slipping the rigging on the other side with stop blocks applied to the control line on that side made of blobs of glue. So there was a lot of glue set up time involved. I don't have the yards as even as I'd like but they look better on the model than they do in the photo. I'll have to do some adjusting after the model is set in the bottle any
  2. I suppose I could rig the back stays as control lines pulled outside of the bottle, but the model already has eight of them and I don't need six more. I'm having a slow go at this one for a variety of reasons, the biggest of which is that this is suppose to be my rainy day project and we've had very little rain here in Vermont! I've also acquired a slight repetitive strain injury in my left thumb. But I am almost finished rebuilding my modelling workstation. I am also finding inaccuracies in the instructions. Of all the extra materials that were provided, I wasn't given enough thread
  3. I think I need to follow the instructions and not modify the rigging too much. The mast fold forward, not backward, so back stays would prevent the masts from folding forward along the lines of what their actual intention on a real ship would be. The more I go along, the more I'm leaning toward completing the build as it is intented, glass bottle and all. I wish I could find another glass bottle like it which I need for another scratch built model.
  4. I finally made some more progress on this kit. Not that it is very challenging, but I'm trying to follow the step by step instructions exactly so that maybe I can learn something but about all I am learning is how difficult it must be to properly write instructions and to assemble a kit. I'm finding left over parts that aren't called out anywhere. There was suppose to be an exact duplicate of parts for the mast and spars but I'm not finding an exact number of duplicate yardarms. There is suppose to be a "test jig" built into the holding stand but it isn't properly molded in. So right now I hav
  5. Well here's today's progress. Of course it doesn't take long to snap together parts, but I needed to do some painting and I want to take my time. I found the instructions a bit vague and I'm noticing that some things don't match their depiction in the diagrams. The hull is made of white plastic and I was to paint it black but to leave the up-raised parts white. Since this is impossible to do on such a small scale, I applied the supplied black acrylic paint across the whole hull and simply wiped and scraped back the parts that were to be left white. I doubt I would have known how to do th
  6. I love working with wood. I love shaping it, carving it, sanding it and finishing it. I very much enjoy putting miniature wooden ships in bottles. I love recreating the ingenuity of the originators of this craft who worked with whatever materials they had on hand with improvised tools to produce small works of art. This kit is none of that. This kit is a miniature plastic ship model that will be placed into a glass bottle using the somewhat traditional technique of hinging the mast and erecting them via their rigging lines pulled from outside the bottle and then obscuring the lines t
  7. One reason I've been hesitant to build scale ship models in the past is that I know that they really should be displayed in a case least they get full of dust or become the victims of unfortunate collisions. For the first model that I ever built, I purchased a somewhat expensive oak fame kit that I finished myself and had glass cut for it at a glazier. This case is a thing of beauty and I was so happy with how my model turned out that I didn't mind the expense of the case kit. Well my "Harvey" model is a bit of a different situation. Although I am happy with how it came out and I put a si
  8. After two months of part time work, I put the finishing touches on "The Harvey" today. Finished the jib sails and rigged them and the crowning touch of topping the mast with pendants flying in the wind. Now I have to resist the temptation of tinkering with it more. And of course after all this work I may as well make a case for it. I'll have to find a safe place for her to sail before I can finish a case. Thanks all for your comments and suggestions!
  9. I've finally finished the main mast and rigging. The small scale of the model forced me to approach the build from the bottom to up; from the front to the back and from the inside to out, so not everything gets put in place the way a real ship would be built. I would normally leave details to the end but something like the ensign was easier to apply while the main mast was off the model. The ensign is a 30 star US flag (circa 1850), something I wanted to add to balance the made-in-China stigma of the kit. Some of the tensioning in the rigging might also have been tighter if I didn't need to bu
  10. Working without plans or proper procedures is a bit of a chore. I had to manufacture some of my own parts like dead-eyes, braces and mast hoops. I rigged the yardarms onto hoops so that they are adjustable instead of gluing them directly to the masts as I think was the intention - which would have been hard since I don't have plans that tell me where they should be glued. So I'm either making things up as I go along or researching other models to figure out what things should look like. I've used parts left over from some other kits I've built and I borrowed the mast, gaff and boom rigging sc
  11. Thanks Micky, my sentiments exactly! Along those lines, I spoke with my helmsman and he said he was tired of getting splinters in his hands and a sore back from horsing around that old-fashion tiller, so I upgraded the helm to a more convenient to operate ship's wheel - although it only has five spokes. (I fashioned it out of an old watch gear I had in my box-o-junk and some brass wire for handles). I suppose the original Harvey could have had a tiller and the "desk" in front of it seems consistent with a tiller arrangement but I had to turn the "desk" around and make a wheel box out of it.
  12. Thanks Jim! I would have preferred that I knew what ship it was supposed to be before I started building it. However, now that I know I'm seeing so many variations on other models I don't know what is supposed to be accurate. I'm using the model as a practice exercise. I have had to manufacture many of my own parts which I haven't done before so that's slow going with a lot of trial and error. The model won't look as polished as an accurate scale kit build will but as I progress it is kind of endearing its self in me.
  13. I'm just about done with the deck details. I included as many upgrades, embellishments, improvements and details (also mistakes) as I dared. I had some materials left over from two other models that I put to use. I early abandoned all hope of historical accuracy and the scale of the model is too small for true accuracy so I decided to make the model "my own": I upgraded the cannon barrels and carriages and lashed them down; I included two swivel guns in the aft; I fashioned cannon balls from pin heads and mounted them into the ball racks; I made belaying pins from brass wire (I also had some l
  14. Thanks, she's at the armory now getting fitted for guns.
  15. I began this tread under the title "Cheap-O Plank on Frame Brig" hoping that someone might help me identify exactly what this kit might be. Well I figured it out by researching riggings for sloops, which led me to schooners which led me to Baltimore Clippers which led me to the Harvey (The Pride of Baltimore is a different ship) which has the exact deck plan as this model. True to modern day fashion, there is a You Tube Video of someone who experienced exactly my same plight and bought one of these kits and then figured it out. Of course by now I have made various blunders trying to do t
  16. After a fashion I managed to plank the hull, which wasn't an easy task without a sheer line plan. Also the ribs on the bulkheads weren't quite precise and I had no plan to fair them up to. The transom didn't make much sense to me and I was sure I was missing a part for it so I ended up fashioning a piece and had to change the lines of the hull somewhat. It worked better on the starboard side than on the port side. I don't think the model would win any prizes if closely examined by experts but then again it isn't a "museum quality" model kit; it's another generic "Privateer" - a merchant ship
  17. I misspoke about the scale, the scale of the model is stated as 1:130. Also, it isn't a brig, it's more of a sloop. The closest model I've seen it resemble is "The Black Prince" which almost matches except for the number of guns.
  18. The model is marked at 1:300 but accuracy is probably not its strong point. While writing this I realized that the kit doesn't contain any blocks, pulleys, deadeyes or any wire or metal parts. All the cordage it contains is a small skein of blue sewing thread. It's a mystery wrapped in an enigma surrounded by a headache.
  19. While I was searching eBay for SIB kits, I came across this plank-on-frame brig kit for sale for $15 (USD). It is a made-in-China set of laser cut wood parts, not too much different from my Model Shipways plank-on-frame 18th Century Long Boat kit except my MS kit had an excellent instruction booklet and well labeled parts. In typical made-in-China cheap-o fashion, this kit has a double sided sheet of a poorly labeled diagram for construction instructions, some of the parts aren't labeled, there is no (English) alphabetic order to the sequence of construction, or a color photo of what the final
  20. I finished rigging my "Privateer" and she looked very ship-shape on the rigging stand. I prepared my putty sea using plumber's putty that I had colored with oil paints. I had some left over from about a year ago which was just the right consistency. I tried not to over do the sea and used uncolored putty for the white foam. Next was setting her to "sea". I found I had a very tight fit and probably should have trimmed the hull just a bit thinner. I found this to be a general issue with most of the parts in the kit that they all needed some trimmin
  21. Finally got back to the AM Privateer kit. I find the most interesting part of the kit to be the nice "Dutch Flask" bottle and stand so this build is more a "bottle with a ship in it" then a "ship built into a bottle". The ship is a generic brig with no real historical content but some of the materials are nice, especially the hull and a nice set of sail materials. The spool of thread included with the kit is useless but the bamboo cocktail skewer material for the mast and spars sanded down nicely. Of course the putty for the sea is too hardened to be of use. I had to fair out the stand t
  22. I just got back to SIB activity and noticed some interest in on Authentic Models "Privateer" kit. I had started this build last spring and left it on my work table until now. I completed the hull last spring, my favorite part, but got bogged down by the tedious sanding down of masts and spars and just couldn't bring myself back to it. I suppose I suffered a little bit of model ship burn out after my sprint to finish my large scale models and the various SIB's I finished from Needham's book. I find this kit to be pleasant enough but since it lacks a bit of authenticity to it I found I lost inte
  23. Hi Rudi, the instructions are rather rudimentary but if I can find a few minutes I'll copy mine and send them too your email. I just got back to this build. Since it isn't ment to be a "museum quality" exact build I feel free to take liberties with the instructions. One confusion is the way they recommend how to drill the holes in the mast for the yardarms so they properly kant. I don't think this is necessary and is unduly complicated. The yards usually have enough play so that they can be adjusted in the bottle but one needs to add the yard arm riggings which are missing in the directio
  24. Hi Jeff, the Brig Lexington is extensively covered in Charles G Davis "The Built Up Ship Model", which I think can still be found. I built a SIB version back in 1980 for a wedding gift for a cousin which I considered my best best work. I put it in a very unique "Rock n Rye" bottle which has a oversized neck and a nice rectangular shape with a nicely scrolled neck. I've wanted to recreate one for a while and have had a carved up and painted hull sitting on a rigging board for some years. Unfortunately I didn't make a water line hull and the full hull is a bit much for most bottles so I can't de
  25. As I have been posting, I have been collecting ship in the bottle kits lately. Most of these escaped me in my youth since they came during my hiatus from modeling. At a certain age, one’s interests mature and things of youth are left behind. It takes a certain amount of curiosity to become interested in the less superficial aspects of modeling and requires a certain maturity to appreciate historical significance and fine craftsmanship. I’ve encountered a variety of different compositions of these kits. All the ones I’ve reported on so far are some variation of materials to be placed in
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