All donations are securely managed through PayPal. Amounts donated are not published online.
Many thanks for your kind support
Join Us On Social Media!
🏝️ About This Website
☝️ Terms of Service
Model Boats Website
Model Boats Website
Boat Clubs & Lakes
Plans & Docs
Rudders and propeller
Building a scale plastic model like the Schnellboot does involve a lot of creativity and imagination mainly around how to convert it to a working model. initial stage is how do you get the motors, radio e.s.c and batteries to fit in and to add to this which component of the superstructure is going to be removable for access to inside the hull. Further matters include access to the motor and other working parts should there ever be a failure and need to replace the faulty part. Desired outcome is that you manage it without causing any damage.
Greatest reward is at the
when onlookers admire your work of art and are even more surprised how well it sails.
9 months ago by boaty
Just found out a very good friend from early days at Chichester
Model Boat passed away early this year. Many a good Sunday sail plus after hours drink at the club monthly meeting, talking on how to model engineer scale boats. Not to forget Midhurst exhibitions over the years.
Ex Scale Secretary Jerry Turner
9 months ago by Jerry1
I'm in the Fenland (Wisbech) area. We have a canalised river (no appreciable flow) to use, but no takers. I'm fed up with asking.
Why did Chichester
die if it was such a good club?
9 months ago by Westquay
Model Boat Club was a great club. No longer going! Where are you trying to start a club?
9 months ago by Jerry1
Seat Trials and mods.
It’s been a while since the boat had it’s maiden voyage on the lake at St. Albans and I’m pleased to report that it looks really good in the water and goes like stink if you open up the throttle.
Sadly I still don’t have any decent video of the boat yet as I can’t film and drive the thing at the same time, but I do have some static wide shots from my GoPro.
When I do the video I’ll ask a cameraman mate to do the honours, maybe I’ll put the GoPro on the bow and then the stern to get some low action shots…the storyboard is already building in my head!!
These early runs were great as they showed up some minor problems that needed attending to.
I found that it needed ballasting slightly as it was not sitting on the waterline evenly from side to side so I flattened out some old lead water pipe and cut it into small sections so that I could add ballast incrementally.
I did this in the ‘domestic test tank’ and once I was happy the lead pieces were fixed in place inside the hull with some super strong double sided tape.
The ESC needed a little programming adjustment because I had forgotten to set the low battery level point to ‘off’ as I am using NiMh batteries and not LiPo’s , that was the cause of the short initial run time on the first outing…..DOH !!
The batteries are now held in place by Velcro straps on some bearers that I added, otherwise a battery change involved cutting cable ties and replacing them at the
…not very practical.
The volt/amp/watt meter is also now on a proper bracket so that the display is more readable.
I have also changed the charging connection from the nasty Tamiya connector to a nice little panel mount XT 60 connector that HobbyKing sell, it comes with a handy blanking plug that I have drilled for a retaining cord.
I have also finally got around to upgrading the firmware on my Turnigy i6 radio to the 10 channel version so that I can assign the lighting to the switches properly and have the rotation of the searchlight on one of the two rotary knobs.
I can use the old 6 channel RX in the new boat….blog coming soon.
10 months ago by robbob
Rebuild Flower Class Corvette
Looks like a real bargain.
Great when you have a model to sail and also display on your window sill.
I built an italeri PT 109 six years ago and this is the same.
Its very rewarding when you motorise a plastic kit as when at the
people come up and say did you really build that.
Plastic magic never fails.
11 months ago by boaty
Stuck in the middle.
A while ago we discussed what to do if our boats broke down out on the lake. I've just realised I was daft. I gave away 2 three man inflatable dinghies but should have kept one.I could have used one if I got stuck. It seems like the only recovery method not mooted.Either inflated at the pond/
or carried inflated to it. What does everyone think?👍
11 months ago by onetenor
What do you do when...
I've been pondering a neodymium magnet on a derrick on the stern of my Southampton tug and steel plates set into the foredecks of my boat and ships! Still pondering, reeling in with a winch is easy, running out the cable to drop the magnet down onto the boat is causing me mechanical headaches though. 😡 Maybe just raising and lowering a suitable boom would be easier!? Any ideas folks, especially amongst you winch using sailors?
First time my destroyer conked out I swam out 'in me knickers' to rescue it cos the wind was pushing it towards the lake fountains. it's NOT a flying boat! Got a round of applause and some interesting suggestions from some of the er 'ladies' present 😲😉
Second time we had flat calm on a balmy summer evening and she started very slowly drifting home.
So as it was early evening we went to the
restaurant terrace where I could enjoy a steak and a glass or two while keeping an eye on her progress. Hard life ain't it 😉
Whatever, I'm sure there's a more elegant solution than more plumbing than there is in my bathroom! I even once used my sharp pointed destroyer to push a failed plastic RTR so called speed boat home. Took a lot of manoeuvring with a long thin destroyer but we made it.
Once I managed to get it lined up and close enough to shore a good shove with all ahead flank then full astern let it run up the shore.
Was good helmsmanship practise.
A simple shaped rubber block I could hang over the bow would have made it much easier!
Cheers all, don't get stuck! Doug 😎
PS One other 'Schnapps idea' as they might call it here in Bavaria, I've been playing with for a while is a model of the 'Big Lifter'.
It's a conveyor ship like a big powered dry dock. To take on the load she floods huge tanks and sinks herself😲 slides under the load, pumps the water out again and up she comes load an' all! Would be fun wouldn't it?😉 All the bridge and accommodation superstructure and engine rooms are in the stern. At the bow there are only two tall towers for guidance when taking on the load. The rest is just flat loading deck. Sounds simple don' it 😁 an' a lot more fun than half the plumbing dept. of B&Q. 👍
PPS: I also tried the grab claw idea of Martin's. A sort of 4 prong grappling hook. As he rightly said the first snag is to get the line aboard the stricken vessel in the first place.
I tried it with one of the depth charge derricks on the stern of my destroyer. Reeling in - fine. Getting the line out ? Another kettle of fish. I considered a spring-loaded system to fire the line out IF I could make the winch free run to pay out!
Got no further than considering (the spring launcher I still have) before I completely stripped out the destroyer for a total refit.
Thinks, thinks, thinks ......
12 months ago by RNinMunich
Aerokits Patrol Torpedo Boat
Hi Peter, seems a bit pricey to me.
For me two disadvantages-
1 Only a titchy 2 line display for setting up and reading the batt status, can't put much info in that,
2 External DC supply only.
The Robbe version I use can be either 12V DC at the
, or mains at home.
Personally I wouldn't buy it for that money, but that's just my opinion and wadda I know😉
Surprised about CMB 😲 I always thought it was a real shop!
Ciao, Doug 😎
1 year ago by RNinMunich
Model Boat Mayhem
Model Boat Mayhem presents......a weekend of mkodel boating. This year we are having a theme of Glen Guest designs and Vic Smeed designs. We aim to see as many on the lake over the weekend as possible!
The event is free to enter, BUT Wicksteed Park charge about £6 parking for the day. Parking 100yds from the
and help available for those who require it.....there is even FREE TEA and COFFEE! (all donations acceptable!) Deans Marine support this event......high winds and vertical mist are not invited this year! Come along and have a sail....virtually no restrictions other than frequency control. All you need to bring is a chair and a table if you require them!!!
more info here, keep coming back as the site will be updated as it becomes available
1 year ago by petec
South Manchester Model Boat Club
We were established in 1980 as the Platt Fields Model Boat Club with two objectives:
To promote the construction and sailing of model boats
To organise, hold and attend model boat competitions
In 1998 we decided to change the name of the Club to the South Manchester Model Boat Club so as to better reflect our location and the area of population we serve.
The Club has the exclusive use of the Platt Fields Park boating lake and sails there every Sunday morning from 9.30 am until approx. 1.00 pm. Visitors are always welcome, but why not become a member. Sailing is permitted at other times on this water provided permission is first obtained from the Park Managers office, and a current Club membership card is produced.
We have established a reputation for being a relaxed and friendly Club and currently our membership stands at 18. Although a small club, we have a very large a varied selection of models, with no specialisation or favour given to any particular branch of our hobby (scale, warship, sail, fun, fast electric, etc.) although there is a strong IOM., section and other racing interests.
Our well equipped Club also has exclusive use of a large club room at the
with kitchen facilities where we hold our club meetings on the first Sunday of each month at the end of the scheduled sailing period, along with IOM., race practise on most Tuesday afternoons.
2 years ago by ChrisPSR
Well Doug, relaunch went well and first trip round lake showed I needed to re-balast,as she ploughed through the water. So after consulting others at
I added another 12v 7ah battery (ballast only) and moved the drive battery back by a foot. Placing them side by side amidships. Now she sailed properly. Even pushed the dinghy with 1 man aboard up the lake. So all in all it was a great day will try and get pictures posted and video. Problem being it's all on wife's camera and haven't figured out how to put on PC yet. By for now got to go help grandson. Colin.
2 years ago by Colin H
The ESC is factory programmed to give more current and volts in one direction and less in the other. if for your chosen stick movement with any tx switches for the channel set to "F" and the motor is running in the wrong direction for the prop, you need to change over the ESC to motor leads for a brushed motor. if it's a brushless you need to change over any two of the three leads.
If you use the reverse switch on the tx it will make the motor run in the opposite direction but at reduced power if the ESC was previously running at full power.
I used to run several models with a Tx that did not allow multiple model selection so set up all my models to work with the same settings. Modern sets allow for multi model set ups so the problem has diminished but I still try to keep to the same settings as it avoids problems
2 years ago by Dave M
New Lake at Colwyn?
Today we started the ground work for our move to Llyn Eirias. The first two of 8 purpose built benches were concreted in place with the rest following as soon as possible. in the background is our centrally heated clubhouse, complete with full kitchen facilities and toilets. As you would hope, it is all disabled friendly. We are also working hard to fit out the
boathouse with storage racks and a workshop.
It is a huge improvement on the facilities we had at the old lake with it's open sided shelter and a small toilet once used by the gardener.
2 years ago by kinmel
New Lake at Colwyn?
Access is good, club members can park at the
, others must use the public car park about 75 metres away.
The lake is open to everyone 7 days a week. Unless you have access to the clubhouse, you will need a second boat to rescue your model if it breaks down.
Members have use of the clubhouse which has toilets and a kitchen, public use the leisure centre about 200 metres away.
We meet every Sunday morning in winter
2 years ago by kinmel
CADMA. Conisbrough & District Modelling Association
CADMA was founded in 1985 by a small band of local boat modellers who met in the Conisbrough Library. The club was constituted as a general modelling club to be known as the Coinsbrough and District Modelling Association, (CADMA). The first president of the club was the late Basil Copley M.B.E.
CADMA dug its own lake at the Millpiece, the site of a former water powered wood mill in the shadow of the majestic keep of Coinsbrough castle. As the club developed and numbers increased, a larger sailing site was needed.
We meet every Sunday from 12.30pm at the fountain area of the main lake complex on
BOULEVARD. Electric and steam powered vessels are permitted but not internal combustion engines. We are licensed by the Doncaster Metropolitan Borough council to use the lake and we carry Public Liability Insurance. This is the only licensed site for the sailing of model boats in the Doncaster area.
2 years ago by happysailor
San Pedro Push Boat
It wasn't jammed that tight a full reverse got him clear, he had forgot it had a that shape of bow, the idea as it carried a lot of Lead and house Bricks (kept at
as ballast), we thought it would slice its way through, we then tried my Norfolk Broads Boat it had the right shaped bow and easily run up the ice and like an icebreaker its weight snapped the ice, all was fine until battery shifted and became disconnected, so after my brother nudge it in, we tried my Racing boat it's battery was mounted more securely and as long as we didn't let ice get to thick it worked fine :-)
3 years ago by Peter47
Electrics, switching & wiring loom
Because the fibreglassing process takes a while, there's time to consider other things that need to be done such as the wheelhouse, cabin roofs and hatches, and the electrics.
The electrics are very straightforward and my initial drawings are transformed into a panel that also contains the master power switch, fuse holder and a charging socket.
All the wiring is in 12awg silicone insulated wire and all connections are soldered and insulated with heat shrink.
Initially I used large Futaba connectors but having assembled and tested the loom I'm not very confident of the current handling of these so I replaced them all with XT60 connector that are rated at 65A.
I'll leave the Futaba charging connector in the switch panel as this doesn't need to be uprated.
The master switch is a high current DPDT, centre off type that in one position connect the battery supply to the ESC and motor via the fuse and in the other position to the charging socket.
Although the ESC has a BEC I will supply the receiver and lighting circuits from separate battery supplies, mustn't forget to remove the power wire from the ESC servo connector!
I have incorporated an in-line ammeter in the loom that should monitor and log peak amps and volts, it's only rated at 30A and I'm not sure that it's up to the job, if not I know that 'Component-shop' do something similar that will meter up to 150A for about £18 or so.
I have chosen a Turnigy charger from Hobbyking that will accommodate the 16 cell NiMh (19.2v) series battery system so that the charging can be done with the batteries in situ, the charger has a 12v DC input so this can done at the
from a car battery if required, but it has no AC input. it will also handle LiPO batteries if I decide to switch chemistry !.
That means that I'll need a meaty DC power supply to run the charger on the bench and I have just the thing for the job.....
3 years ago by robbob
You use an ammeter. You can do this at the
by holding the model in the water and running the motor at full power. This will give an indication of the max current drawn. it will be higher than on the water as the motor will be fully loaded with no forward motion, which will reduce the amps drawn.
There are many Wattmeter/Ammeters available for about £20 and allow for up to 100 amps . For smaller models you may be able to use the amp range on a multimeter up to about 10 amps. The meter is wired in series with the motor and Battery.
There are bits of kit that will measure the current on the water and transmit the info back to the TX. I use such a system with my TARANIS TX. There is a cost involved and if you are just starting the wattmeter is a cheaper and easier to use option
3 years ago by Dave M
You originally asked if you could use one switch.
I agree with all the previous comments and advice given. in my experience, however, Mtronic escs work best with the switch in place especially in multiple setups.
Buy a two pole switch and wire one pole to each of the Mtronic switches. You will have to find a suitable spot above the waterline that is waterproof. Disconnect one red lead between one esc and the rx.
The power from the batteries will still be connected to your Escs however and will flatten the batteries over a few weeks.
You do need to be able to disconnect each battery between sailings.
I have a Solent and remove the top to fit batteries and switch on the rx etc. if you put the switches near the coaming you only need to raise the top a few inches at the
On the bench you can take the top off to service the running gear and remove the batteries for charging.
Personally I abandoned switches for high powered (>5amp) currents many years ago and now just use plugs (Deans or similar) to connect all my batteries.
I also remove all batteries from my models after sailing and charge in a remote safe environment.
Good luck and I hope you find a solution that meets your needs
3 years ago by Dave M
HI Cormorant,I have the same Tamco 3 channel TX [Tac 330] as you will have..Just remember,as I found out...this TX runs with the 3 channel Micro RX [P-Tarx3] only,I bought another Tamco 4 channel RX for it,and it would not bind.All sorted now...great set btw.Good luck.
3 years ago by lakesidebob
H.M.S. BULLDOG / BEAGLE
Virtually finished the hull by adding depth markings, boot topping and the final coats of clear satin spray. All that remains are the deck fitting details, which will be added as final finishing touches.
Started on the superstructure and have nearly done the lower level structure. As this will be removable have added wooden reinforcements to give more strength and bending resistance. Have never done this before and it may prove to be unnecessary, so appreciate comments. Felt it was much easier to do this now, rather than once complete and find it then flexs and cracks at the
Going through my usual head-scratching to decide the best way of holding the superstructure down with hidden fasteners.
3 years ago by RHBaker
Hi, parking by the lake is for disabled people only as per first post. However you are quite welcome to drop off your gear by
and park. OK to get to the lake, the park entrance is directly opposite a building call Regal House (private retirement home) on Weymouth Street (A350) A large Morrison's supermarket is next to Regal House which you could park in or there is plenty of free parking in Weymouth Street. The walk from Morrison's or Weymouth Street to
is approx 200 yards. if you are a blue badge holder drive down entrance to park and on right you will see tennis courts on right hand side, parking is by the tennis courts. Approx 25 metres walk to
. if you can't manage we can get post removed in road so you can drive right up to
. in general we sail by boathouse there is generally someone there who will look after your gear while you park up. There are other roads surrounding park all of which generally have free parking on as residential streets look on Google maps. The nearest postcode is BA12 9NT which is Morrison's
4 years ago by andy_mart
Precedent Huntsman 461/2 Inch
First thing well done for getting this far, stop doughting your self, it will work!!!!!
Before you start fitting the motor etc, have you put a coat or two of varnish, paint etc on the inside of the hull, this will act as a sealent for possible gaps, it might show on the outer hull, need for a bit of filler etc,
Next, do you want to put stiffening on the outside under the paint???? 2 or 3 layers of ladies tights put on with thined varnish and sanded between coats, this will give some protection from hitting the
Then the final colour finish, what do you fancy??? I use car areosols colour your choice.
Still some work and decicions to make.
4 years ago by jarvo
Arrived 2 days early along with 4 minI servo ordered at same time, only snag it was only one, my error teach me to read my confirmations better, Box must have clicked back to 1 un-noticed. Never mind 2 more already ordered, soon have all my fleet ready for instant sail, instead of swapping gear from boat to boat as at present, often at
. Will definitely upping suppliers ratings ASAP.
5 years ago by Peter47
More hull rebuild
Welcome to the site. I started renovating this model almost 5 years ago and due to a variety of reasons I have not progressed any further than I reached in 2010. its a big boat and will require a whole heap of ballast to bring to the waterline. Until I complete the model I will not be in a position to answer your question. However I have built several other large models and will be adding the ballast at the
as big heavy models do not transport well and are prone to damage if carried ballasted. I will use lead and my guess would be about 10 Kg but I could be wrong. Perhaps if I get a chance I will take the hull to the lake and do a test ballast, if so I will update the blog.
5 years ago by Dave M
Concrete has been used in full sized vessels, some hulls were even made of concrete.
Whilst feasible it is rather permanent once poured so you will always have a heavy model to move.
Lead on the other hand can be removed so making transport much easier, plus there will be less chance of damaging fittings with a light weight boat.
As you already have a supply of lead I suggest you build some ballast boxes in the hull bottom and make a note of the lead required in each box to save faffing around at the
last pic is a good shot of the hull finish, it turned out like glass!
You can see the shape of the rudders, the boat turns real nice, no roll, and does not slow down.
so what was the calamity.????
I broke my own golden rule, fiddling and messing at the
. I usually dont take tools, if something goes wrong, the lake side is not the place to meddle, but after a test session with the new props, although I got pretty close to what I wanted, I decided to try both props turning same direction. The results were not as good, so I swopped them back to counter rotating, had another run, in the middle of Gautby lake in Birkenhead, I heard a loud buzzing, and a slow boat, going in circles, yes you guessed it, one of my beautiful expensive hand made brass cleaver props is now at the bottom of the lake. Lesson, dont meddle at the
6 years ago by pmdevlin
(Fire Boat) Kit Shack 34'' RAF Rescue Launch
On going build, yet to fit Fire monitors and sundry over fittings, first launched 19th March 2013 at Ethrow Park, Stockport. initially using a 25amp speed controller, found very slow and stuttery a little disappointed, but all went well on up grade to 50 amp and change to 2 blade racing prop, at
, reverted to original 3 bladed prop after altering angle of blades to same as twin bladed prop with little loss of speed, did think of fitting two motors, but well pleased with set up as is, steers well forwards and in reverse unusual for a single prop. To see some of building shots and first sail head to https://plus.google.com/photos/105562993097936235014/albums/5857142598784840865 (Motor: Johnson 600 type) (10/10)
6 years ago by Peter47
If you are blowing fuses you are using too much current. Assuming your fuse is rated to protect your motor / ESC max current, two points come to mind:
1 - the prop shaft may be misaligned with the motor / couplings or too tight in its shaft due to the lock nuts loosening and tighteing up.
2 - your prop is too big or of too great a pitch for the motor. The plastic two bladed racing props can be very power hungry and require high wattage motors.
It could be that your motor is not designed to run at 9.6 volts. As you could not check the level of heat in the motor or ESC Immediately it may have cooled down by time of recovery. A common indicator is a slight burning / hot smell when you overvoltage a motor. A series of quick short circles in front of you launch point should be sufficient to indicate any problems before the boat stops out of reach.
If you can get access to a wattmeter this will indicate the amps being used both in and out of the water, just make sure you don't point the stern at anyone you like whilst holding the model in the water at the
Hope you find a solution
7 years ago by Dave M
RAF Crash Tender
HI Fellow Enthusiasts
Photo shows my RAF crash tender in the colours as it was when first built in 1956/57 from a kit. (Red tops like all fire engines, well I was only 9 at the time.) This photo was taken at
in 1993 when I first joined the Cwmbran Modelling Society. The Second photo shows the boat on display at the Portis Head Open Day event in 2000 several modifications taking place to the overall look of the boat. in 2008/9 I decided for it's belated 50th. birthday to revamp the model and bring it closer to the real thing. Damage to the woodwork being repaired and a colour scheme close to that of the real boat being applied. Several new deck fittings being made along with new window surrounds made out of plastic replacing the cardboard ones fitted in 2000. New decals and correct flag also fitted. The model was entered in the 2010 society Chairmans Comp. winning joint first place with one of my other models. Photo 4 shows my model as she is to-day repaired once again ready to sail, after hitting some Ice over the christmas period 2010 resulting in a hole in the bow that almost caused her to sink.
The model over the 54 years it's been around has been fitted with single and twin electric drives and to day it has a single johnson 550 brushed electric drive via a 2.5/1 gear box run off two 7.2 volt racing packs in series. The torque generated being too great for standard plastic props resulting in me using 40mm three blade brass props. The motor controller is an electolize 15 amp unit and I also use one of their switch units to activate the water pump for the scratch built water cannons. The water pump being salvaged from a 1960's car washer system and still goes to-day.
Hope you enjoy the pic,s as much as Ive enjoyed this model over the last 50 years plus.
8 years ago by GreyWolf
at least an older model fitted out with more modern equipment means its more likely to be used , and therefore enjoyed by even more people ? there isnt anything wrong in using the period equipment other that that of interference issues , and the Ignorance of younger generation of modellers with " toy type " models and the splatter band 27 & 40 mhz radios , who will turn up at the
& switch on without checking the frequency of anybody else who happens to be present ! I for one enjoy older wooden models , all of mine now operate with modern 2.4 ghz radio , better quality motors , etc , at least they are being used rather than being a shelf queen !