Jump to content
Bottled Ship Builder


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


DSiemens last won the day on April 18

DSiemens had the most liked content!

About DSiemens

  • Rank
    Chief Officer

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Not Telling

Recent Profile Visitors

3,539 profile views
  1. That looks great. Your doing an awesome job. I like that your not afraid to go small with your bulwarks, rails, masts and yard arms. Gives the ship a more realistic look. I sometimes think you can tell a good ship in bottle because you could imagine yourself walking around on deck. I can do that with your model. I've never been on a real sailing ship either. Biggest I've been on is a day sailing dinghy which isn't much. It is kind of funny being from a land locked state in the US that I'd be so into sailing ships. There's just a sense of adventure to them that I like. The more you get into this hobby the more you learn. I happen to be in a ship modeling club as well with people that build the big static models. 1:50 scale or bigger sort of models. There is a tendency to get particular about historical details and scale in that group and I fall into that sometimes and build in that way but, my way is not THE way, it's just one way. There is room for all types of building in the art though so I think people should be as technical or not technical as they like. Ultimately it's about having fun. A great example is an Etsy shop I came across from a builder in Ukraine. Brenner is the name he has on Etsy and he has some of the most beautiful ships in bottles I have ever seen. They are artistically amazing. They are not at all scale, or historically accurate and don't have a lot of detail. None of that matters, they are beautiful. Here's a link. https://www.etsy.com/shop/Wardroom?ref=simple-shop-header-name&listing_id=696912513 Anyway that was a big tangent just to say build how you want, at your own pace, and have fun.
  2. The forum is very slow but not dead. There are a ton of different ratline methods. I've seen people use lace, or even photo etching. There's good and bad to all methods. I agree that lace or screening doesn't look the best and metal being hard is harder to get into the bottle. I haven't tried all the methods but I can tell you what works well for me. There's two parts ratlines and it maybe obvious but I'll point them out just so every one understands my terminology. The lines connecting the mast to the ship and run more or less vertically are called shrouds. The lines that work as ladders and run horizontally are called ratlines. Since I usually use the folding method the tightness of the shrouds is important for setting the rake or angle of the mast. So while some builders make their shrouds and ratlines separate and add them on to the ship after the two parts are combined, I put the shrouds on first then add the ratlines. I like to make my shrouds with a single line weaving back and forth from the ship to the mast. This makes tightening easy since I pull the line and move the mast back and forth to tighten the shrouds. Once the shrouds are tightened I tie down and glue down the last line. Then I move on to the ratlines. With the mast pulled forward and shrouds tight I glue on the ratlines. This can be done one by one or you can use a frame. Place the frame between the mast on the shrouds and glue the ratlines to the shrouds. I've used superglue and white glue. Both work fine. I will say superglue dries stiff so try not to use to much. Also if you get to much on the line it may leave a white blob. These can be painted over if needed. If you use white glue try using the frame to keep the lines in place while the glue dries. That tends to work well. Test the lines once the glue is dry to make sure they are secure. Then cut off the excess with follicle clippers. I describe this method in more detail in my Bermuda sloop build log and there is more pictures.
  3. Yeah. I'll move the ship all over the bottle in this process. Gravity helps too. Some times I turn the bottle upright and let the ship hang off of its lines. Once all the lines are glued down and cut off then I maneuver the ship to the sea base. Helps to have a piece of plastic wrap over the sea so you don't get putty on the yards or mast in the process.
  4. I agree it probably is a chemical patent and they are all different. Definitely experiment and find what works for you. As far as the wire method. I use coat hanger wire so its pretty stiff. It does take some practice and patience. I do have a photo I need to add to my current build log. Notice the wire is placed just before the mast and holds the ship down. I'm holding the forestay line with the same hand I'm holding the wire with. I use my free hand to pull the line tight and work my tools. First thing I do is tighten the line where I want it to check that every thing is working. Second I loosen the line a little bit. With a second wire I put a dab of super glue on the line right in front of the thread block or hole the line is being pulled through. I pull that wire out and tighten the line. Since I use super glue this takes about five seconds. Last, once the glue is dry I go back with a razor blade on the end of a wire and cut the line. All of this is done with one hand on the wire holding the ship down and the other working the tools. The advantage is you can maneuver the ship to reach lines easier than you would if the ship was glued down. Also on a catastrophic failure you can cut the rigging and pull the ship out with out breaking the bottle.
  5. There is. You can private message me with the icon that looks like an envelope. I get on the site on my phone a lot so I know its in the icon that is three horizontal lines in the top right. You may have to look around a bit if your logging on from a computer.
  6. Bruce, I use Plastaline a lot and I really like it but I think my method may be a bit different. First I cut out a piece, flatten it and cut it to fit the bottle. I don't fill the bottle very much with sea I've found maybe a half a centimeter is enough. Once I have it cut out I put the ship on it and cut out a space for the hull. Then I roll it up carefully and put it in the bottle and use some wire to unroll it. I fit a hull blank to the hole in the clay at this point because it inevitably moved but the clay isn't hard to push back into place. Once the clay is in place I hold the bottle over a hot range for thirty seconds. Just enough so the bottom touching the glass looks wet. Then I let it cool. This gets the plastaline to stick to the bottle. I then put the ship in. I don't glue the ship down until I have the rigging secure. I use coat hangers to hold things in place while I tighten lines. It's one of many methods and it works for me. If your clay is thin though you can glue the ship down to the glass in the hole put into the clay. I suggest using an epoxy for that. I found a marine epoxy at Home Depot that dries white works well. If I get it on the edges of the sea it's white and blends in with the sea foam anyway. I have naked plastaline before and one thing to watch out for is letting it sit to long. The clay starts to separate leaving a white film on top. This is why I went with the range method. Just enough to keep it in place and not much more. Plastaline never dries so it looks good for a long time. I have bottles going on six years that still look like the day I bottled them. Hobby Lobby or Michael's will have Plastaline. I use Van Aken plastaline brand which is carried by most craft stores. https://www.dickblick.com/products/van-aken-plastalina-modeling-clay/ As far as how long to wait before corking, once the clay is back to its mostly hardened state is good to go. I wouldn't want to do much with it when the plastaline goes liquid any way. It runs like water when heated. I'd give it ten to fifteen minutes to cool. I hope that helps.
  7. I thought I'd share I was on a podcast talking about building ships in bottles. https://therecoveringcpa.com/episode-183-daniel-siemens/
  8. DSiemens

    HMS Terror

    I really need to get into styrene. The bulwarks look great.
  9. Love the Bowsprit. That should make it very strong even at that small size. Looking good.
  10. Beautiful. I agree you learn a lot by working on the bigger models. The couple I've done have given me a great perspective on how ships work.
  11. That actually looks really good. There's no rules on medium. Use what ever you like. Paper is totally allowed. Wood is a lot of fun too. I think it's more forgiving than paper. My philosophy with wood has always been cut big then sand smaller. You can't sand paper down really. It shreds and folds. If you can build a paper ship in bottle I think you are very capable of building a wood one.
  12. Those are incredible.
  13. Absolutely beautiful work. Thank you for sharing with us.
  • Create New...