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Bottled Ship Builder
joe100

Greetings!

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Firstly, what a wonderful place! The ships around here are fantastic and the skills are simply undeniable.

I primarily model in 1/700 but I do play in the smaller scales. Right now I'm gathering materials for the Amati Hannah in 1/300. I don't plan on using the bottle though. I want to take the detail to the next level on this build, just as a change of pace from my usual warship building.

here are some photos of my ships:

My mostly scratch built 1/700 Austro-Hungarian battleship SMS Viribus Unitis in green camo as she looked. Before the war around 1913:

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USS Idaho, the last pre-dreadnought in 1/700

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Of special interest to some of you might be the rigging. It's fine tungsten wire from a Japanese ship model detail company called Modelkasten. It comes in a few diameters but this stuff changed how I model. I used it on VU and Idaho to build the awning supports as well. Take a look.

It doesn't crease, break, flexible, and glues well. I think some of you will absolutely love it. I know I do! I get my spools off of amazon. Only downside is the price, but after one try, I was hooked. Personally, it's cheap at any price.

Thanks for looking,

Joe

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These are 1/700 scale?  Try to include a common object (such as a pen or hobby knife) for visual size reference in at least one of the photos.

The detailing is marvelous, as are the weathering effects. I also like the use of figures on Idaho, they bring some life to what can be a very dead presentation. Are they the PE figures I've seen advertised? Try bending the arms and legs into more active poses, like walking or climbing a ladder or looking through binoculars so they look less like cut-out silhouettes, even just a few would work.

Good tip on the wire you mentioned, we might find it useful for details, but on ships in bottles wire would be a disaster for rigging. Did you use the wire on the railings as well as the rigging?

I don't think the wood grain sea works very well, perhaps detracting from the overall effect. Even a minimalist approach with dark blue paint and an overcoat of one of the water effect materials to suggest the slight ripples in essentially still water would be better. See some of Robert Wilson's waterline miniatures in the build logs, under the name 'Shipbuilder', for how a realistic sea adds to the presentation.

I look forward to seeing more of your work -- even if it isn't in a bottle.

 

Edited by Dave Fellingham

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The PE figures are from Eduard. I think it's a little deceiving since I've taken such close-up images of the ships. The Idaho model is only about 5 inches long so the crew members are maybe 1.2mm tall and made of stainless steel. Bending them would destroy the beautiful laser painted finish. It's not possible. They're so small, the only way you're able to see any detail in them is through macro photography.

Secondly, I dislike sea bases. I like to display my ships this way. I'm not building dioramas, I'm building ships.

Not to be prickly, but I didn't really come here to be critiqued. I've been doing this for many years and just wanted to share with this community. 

Edited by joe100

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Welcome Joe,

Those miniatures are really nice to look at.     Those strange looking lattice masts on the Idaho must have been difficult!    I have used wood veneer seas myself, but only for wooden sailing ships that have not been painted at all, but varnished throughout, and it was very effective.     Do you build full-hull ships as well?       I quite like both types and divided my modelling equally between full-hull and waterline.

Bob

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Beautiful ships Joe.  I especially like the weathering.  I'd like to learn more techniques in regards to weathering.  It's not something I've done a lot of but I can see the benefit.  While I prefer bottling ships I agree with your decision to not bottle the Hannah.  As a kit goes it looks pretty good but as a first time ship in bottle the kit is a disaster.  I've talked to at least three people that tried that kit and decided bottling ships was to difficult.  It's not that difficult the kit is just not made for it.  I would like to see what you do with a static model though.  Welcome.  

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Thanks for the compliments guys!

I've found that weathering is always best left subtle. I use undiluted water color paint in three colors. Raw umber, then a red leather, finally dark brown. Rust is really never "rust" colored. 

Here is an example of rust to the extreme. USS Alabama after her shakedown cruises. She was a rusty mess when she returned to Maine. Same teqnique, watercolor paint. Layered from light to dark. It's thick and easy to work with and far more forgiving than acrylics even but they must be sealed though. One of the last things I do then a nice lightly airbrushed coat of flat finish. 

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This is more typical: my SMS Derfflinger in 1/700

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Some more weathering on ships I've done:

1/2000 IJN Yamato built a couple of years ago as she appeared mid-war

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1/700 German Destoyer Z39 at the end of the war after the Germans gave up painting the surface fleet. Painting the base took almost as long as the ship

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1/700 Uboat diorama I built as well,

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Edited by joe100

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4 hours ago, joe100 said:

The PE figures are from Eduard. I think it's a little deceiving since I've taken such close-up images of the ships. The Idaho model is only about 5 inches long so the crew members are maybe 1.2mm tall and made of stainless steel. Bending them would destroy the beautiful laser painted finish. It's not possible. They're so small, the only way you're able to see any detail in them is through macro photography.

Secondly, I dislike sea bases. I like to display my ships this way. I'm not building dioramas, I'm building ships.

Not to be prickly, but I didn't really come here to be critiqued. I've been doing this for many years and just wanted to share with this community. 

The only 1/700 scale figures I had seen were unpainted brass which could be bent a bit to make them more 3-dimensional and natural. Actually, a human male figure at an average height of 5' -9" (175 cm) at 1/700 scale would be .098" (2.5 mm), about twice the height you stated. I didn't realize you bought them finished or that finished figures in that scale were even available. A visual reference in one of the photos, as I suggested, would have given us an idea of the actual size of these miniatures.

It seems to me that the purpose of a waterline model is to show the ship as it looked in its natural element and that putting one on a block of stained wood defeats that purpose and detracts from the model. Just my opinion and observation to use as you choose, but in no way intended as anything but constructive and for your benefit and consideration.

We do operate here in an open environment of discussion and exchange of information and knowledge. Personally, I learn much more from someone who openly and honestly tells me what they don't like about any part of my work and why, or makes a suggestion towards a better result, than I do from the effusive, often empty, praise of a thousand other observers. I also have been building ship models for a long time -- almost 60 years -- and gave up on the limitations, inaccuracies and compromises inherent in all kits for the freedom of scratch building 40 years ago. The most important thing I've learned in all that time is that there is always more to be learned.

I'm looking forward to seeing more of your work, especially the Hannah, which I hope you do as a build log so we can watch as you progress. I'm curious to see what improvements you make to the kit..

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You know Fellingham, you come off as extremely condescending. I'm not sure if that's your intent, but you might want to work on that. A gentleman is gracious and only gives his opinion on the work of others when asked. I didn't come here for blanket praise, I came to participate and discuss model building and I was simply sharing my work. That's all. Even if you didn't like it, or something bothered you about my ships, silence would have been the better course. When someone new arrives, if their first interaction is someone giving unsolicited "advice", it comes off as rude. It's as simple as that. 

It seems folks here simply put up with you since I've recieved a couple private messages advising me to take you with a grain of salt. Well, I thought you ought to know that others here feel the same way. 

Since I'm new here, I'll probably be handed my hat and shown the door for being so blunt with you and seeing as you likely hold yourself in such high regard, I doubt my words will change your course anyway. Going forward, if I do remain, I'll ask you not to engage with me nor will I, you.

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Joe,

I like the presentation of the U boat in drydock.    I had often thought about building a ship in drydock, but never got round to it on account of viewers would have to look down on it to see it.   It really never ocurred to me to have the nearside open, thus allowing a normal view.   

Bob

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Thanks! My inspiration to build this model came from this guy:

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I've always liked this diorama.

I wanted mine to be dark and moodier. The drydock is from Flyhawk, but they're hard to come by these days sadly. They do pop up if you 

in 1/700 it's only a few inches long, but it displays well I think. 

Edited by joe100

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That is a spledid model, and it has made me think about possible drydock scenes again.    I was not paying attention earlier when I asked if you build full hull models, on looking closer at your first images, I can see you do:)

Bob

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I like to build everything, try out new things, build vignettes, etc. I like to have fun, no theme to what I do. 

I like full hulls because I've always found a rake of 4 naval screws to be dramatic in a way. 

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