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Bottled Ship Builder


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Everything posted by Shipbuilder

  1. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    Here is a Utube video of the Lady Elizabeth, I think it must have been taken from a drone! It must be quite recent, because half the bowsprit has rusted away. It was complete when I was there in 1982 - Bob
  2. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    After they were condemned at Stanley, usually after getting damaged off Cape Horn, most of them still had many years service ahead of them as storage hulks. As they actually had owners, no-one was free to take anything off them! In 1982, the hulk of the Egeria was still in use, although only the after part remained! The Fleetwing was the only one that arrive undamaged. She was purchased for inter-island use, and therefore arrived intact, and was used for a number of years. There were plenty more hulks around, but the above-mentioned ones were the only ones I managed to see. Actually, my first thought when I volunteered to go down there was that I would see the wrecks, something that I had always wanted to do ever since I was at school. As we sailed into Stanley on a freezing cold morning, I think that the eyes of everyone aboard, except me. was glued on the Task Force ships, and general activity in the harbour, but I was looking in the other direction, at the hulk of the iron barqe Lady Elizabeth (Completed 1879) at the other end of the harbour. Didn't take me long to get aboard, meaure things up, and take some photographs. Even got down ito the tween deck, but couldn't go any lower, because the lower hold was flooded as the ship was aground. Bob
  3. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    This is the inside of the Fleetwing. They had cut the stern down to the waterline, and removed or broken off the clipper bow. There were a few spars lying about as well. I boarded all the wrecks I could, including iron barque Lady Elizabeth, barque Jhelum, Yankee clipper Snowsquall, American barque Jennie S Barker at Grytviken, South Georgia, Canadian barque Egeria. Got close to American packet ship Charles Cooper, but couldn't board her, also saw barques Capricorn, William Shand, Margaret and Actaeon. We didn't go to Goose Green, so I missed out on the Vicar of Bray. Neither did we go to Leith, South Georgia, where the British full-rigged ship Sierra Pedrosa was beached. Our Welsh ship's surgeon, John Jones, gave me the book Porthmadog Ships by Emrys Hughes and Aled Eames, and I later purchased Immortal Sails by Henry Hughes. John managed to get appointed to my ship at Ascension Island for one relieving voyage, just to get down to Port Stanly and see the Fleetwing. But the day after he joined, we got demobbed, and sent home to the UK, so he missed out. I drew up the plan using dimesnions etc from the Lloyds Register and the two known paintings of the ship. Bob
  4. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    This is a photograph of the remains of Fleetwing that I took in 1982. The deck had gone, and they were using the hull as a dump for empty 40 gallon oil drums. I did get aboard though. Bob
  5. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    Here is my drawing of the Welsh brig Fleetwing - Bob
  6. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    Yes, I agree, a perfect image usually means it is a modern reproduction, and you have got the balance exactly correct. I have seen photographs of the Cariad as well - real schooner! Bob
  7. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    It certainly looks like the real thing, and the pictures are very typical of genuine sailor-made scrimshaws of whaling times - Bob
  8. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    Extremely authentic looking as well! What material do you use for the "ivory?" Bob
  9. Small steel barquentine. 20 feet to 1 inch. White-hulled ships are not very photogenic. Bob
  10. Small steel barquentine

    Thanks Alan, My wife painted the sea yesterday. Bob
  11. Small steel barquentine

    Thanks, It took just under 50 hours to build, spread out over four months. But I only worked on it for 39 days of that time. That included making the display case and carrying case. Bob
  12. Small steel barquentine

    Thanks, finally fitted in the sea - Bob
  13. This thirty-page download has been written following requests for plans and photographs of the RMS St. Helena from a number of ship model builders, ex crew members, and passengers who sailed in the ship during her time on the UK – St. Helena – Cape Town between the years 1978 and 1989. The download has 2,398 words, 52 illustrations, including 9 plans. During my time in the vessel, from 1979 to 1989, I took a large number of photographs, and took copious notes that enabled me to draw up an authentic set of plans for the ship. It is only concerned with the ship herself, and does not contain any reference to the many adventures that we had over those eventful years, or life aboard! It contains profile, general arrangement deck plans and a lines plan for the hull. By clicking the link, you can read the synopsis. Then, if you wish to purchase a download, a Paypal button for £2.99 is provided. http://payhip.com/b/hmx2
  14. Roberts Situation

    I didn't say I was not interested in ships in bottles because I am - I just do not build them myself! I was very interested in Dave Fellingham's project, but he has disappeared, I am very interested in Chasseur's Preussen as well. I am here because I was asked to join. I believe I have contruibuted quite a lot of information that is relevant to building ships in bottles, because in or out of bottles, they are still miniatures. But if nothing much is going on, it tends to make me lose interest! Bob
  15. MOVED from - RMS St Helena ex Northland Prince

    I know, but it was not me that made it go off topic. It has taken long enough for anyone to notice! Bob
  16. MOVED from - RMS St Helena ex Northland Prince

    The problem I have is that I am not a ship in bottle builder - never have been! As not much is going on, there is little to attract me here. I am not talking about my type of model - the whole site has gone pretty quiet. Bob
  17. MOVED from - RMS St Helena ex Northland Prince

    I have had a Facebook group for over a year now, and find it a very positive experience! It is called Merchant Ships in Miniature, and now has a membership of 170, from all over the world There is good participation, with a number of builds of various types of merchant ships progressing very well, with lots of comments and discussion. This has quite surprised me, as merchant ship models have never been very popular. A bye-product of this is that it brings in a steady income of between 60 and 120 pounds per month from my small practicums. Neither do I mind about members offering models or books etc for sale, as it all furthers the hobby. The biggest killer of forums, as far as I can see, is when members stop posting. Living in a model shipbuilders backwater has caused me to lose a great deal of interest, but Facebook has revived me considerably, although I am not a member of Twitter and don't intend to become one! I can really recommend Bottled Shipbuilder transferring to Facebook with their own SIB Group. It is easy enough to ban undesirables, and even prevent them from communicating with you, but I have never needed to do that with any group members! Bob
  18. MOVED from - RMS St Helena ex Northland Prince

    How long is this one scheduled to last? I assume it is OK until the renewal date. Will it just disapear, or remain, but locked? Bob
  19. MOVED from - RMS St Helena ex Northland Prince

    It is easy enough to set up your own group on Facebook, and it is free of charge. You have the facitity to ban or block unwanted members as well, so no trouble with SPAM. I was banned by the "great dictator" Chuck from Model Ship World, several years ago for having the audacity to compain about his aggressive moderating. He even banned me from MSW on Facebook for the simple act of posting some model ship images in the group. My Facebook group is thriving "Merchant Ships in Miniature," with about 160 members at the moment, many of them active ship modellers. Bob
  20. MOVED from - RMS St Helena ex Northland Prince

    It is a pity that interest seems to have died away. Maybe it would be better for you to develop your group on Facebook, as that is free and has a much larger audience, and it does appear to have a good following. Bob
  21. RMS St Helena ex Northland Prince

    Thanks, my favourite ship, but not a great reponse to all that work I put in drawing up the plans, considering how many requests I got to produce them in the first place! Bob
  22. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    I also do a fair amount of plan drawing. Merchant ships only, so they are not very popular amongst model shipbuilders. Bob
  23. What else do you model besides SIBs?

    Semi Automatic "Bug" Morse Key Feeling like a change from ship models, a few days ago, I decided to try and build a semi-automatic bug key. This type of morse key was first developed in the United States. Conventional morse keys move up and down, and both dots and dashes have to be made manually. When I first went into passenger liners as a junior radio officer in 1965, I found it very hard going sending large numbers of messages, often containing hundreds of words. My wrist was quickly in danger of seizing up, so I obtained a cheap Japanese bug key in Cape Town. The bug key works horizontally, and the side of the palm can be rested on the desk. Pushing the paddle to the right with the thumb, produces a string of dots by vibrating a piece of weighted steel spring with electrical contacts fitted. Pushing it to the left with the forefinger, the dashes have to be made individually. I found this a great help, and was soon able to send for considerable lengths of time without getting tired. In the next twelve years, I got through two Japanese bug keys, the first being accidentally dropped by the third radio officer when it was only a few weeks old. That broke the paddle arm off, and I had to effect a temporary repair until I could replace it again in Cape Town. Despite being quite cheap, I had no complaints about the Japanese keys, they were really good. But I had heard that the American Vibroplex keys were the best of the best. Eventually, I was able to purchase on in Houston, Texas, for about £50. I used that one regularly from 1977 until leaving the sea in late 1992, and still have it today. The key illustrated is purely my own design based on trial and error, and it took almost a week to get it working correctly. I have compared it with my Vibroplex, and although I am a bit "rusty" at morse after 25 years, can still produce perfectly readable code, and cannot tell any difference in handling between mine and the Vibroplex, I incorporated small ball races for the top and bottom bearings that gave a very smooth action. The spring steel is a piece of a junior hacksaw blade with the teeth ground off. The vertical pillars are all old rifle shells cut off to the correct length, and bolted to the acrylic base via holes drilled through ends. The dent caused by the firing pins was a great guide for the drill. The open tops were fitted with home-made caps made from brass, with a fancy brass bolt in the top for purely aesthetic reasons. Solving the spring problem was beyond me, as I could nor find any springs small enough, or of the correct strength. I got round this by using powerful neodymium magnets instead of springs, and they work really smoothly. The tension can be easily adjusted by moving the magnets further apart, or closer together. Neither could I get the dot contacts correct, so I used a small magnetic reed switch. It is actuated by a magnet fixed the vibrating arm. The speed of the dots can be adjusted by moving the brass weight along the vibrating arm. The closer it is moved to the front of the key, the faster the dots. Most of the construction is in brass. The base and paddle are acrylic sheet and the finger knob is a small "button knob" normaly used for glass cabinets. Bob
  24. Finding plans

    A book doesn't take up all that much space, and you can always get one from a library, copy the plan, and take it back. There are plans here, such as this one: http://www.bottledshipbuilder.com/index.php?/topic/262-going-for-gold-build-bessie/#comment-2373 I would recommend something like the above coasting ketch to begin with, as merchant ships are far less complicated than warships, not having guns or much in the way of decoartion. Sadly, they are very unpopular though. Bob
  25. I began this cargo liner in November. Scale 32 feet to 1 inch (1:384) Because she was such a big ship, the hull is 18 inches long overall, even at this small scale. Not going in a bottle, of course, couldn't manage that! Usually, I can build something like this within four or five weeks, but in this case, I lost interst shortly after starting. With the better weather, and lighter afternoons, my interest has revived. I have almost completed the bridge section now. I hope it will move along a bit faster now. Bob