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>> Home > Tags > ballast

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Port Expo 2015 by Jerry Todd Lieutenant   Posted: 2 days ago
Constellation and Pride got stuffed into the van, and off we went. This year they had moved the pool down near the end of the dock and we got to be under the tent with the other exhibitors. I took Pride along this time as well. The director of Historic Ships Baltimore sailed on Pride when I did in 81. He was with the boat longer than me, and I think my model brought back some memories. The pool's still too shallow, but she sailed a little and looked good even aground. Pride got put in the pool for a moment, only the second time she's gotten wet. No sailing yet, her ballast fin isn't made yet. Here's a little video of Stella playing in the pool: https://youtu.be/Q9eBR-kax7k

Building a deck by Jerry Todd Lieutenant   Posted: 3 days ago
I began laying the deck on April 5th. It had snowed as recently as the week before, but it finally warmed up enough to use glue. The strips were cut to 6-5/8" length, about 20' in 1:36 scale. I used a black marker on two opposite sides to represent the pitch in the seams. The deck was laid in a 5-plank pattern to mix up the butt-joints as much as I could. My research on her decking found she's had various styles and plank widths over her life. The earliest photo showing her deck that I could find, showed it straight planked with 7 or 8" wide boards based on the number of planks between her waterway and the main hatch coaming. Her waterway logs seem to be placed ON the decking, as there's no margin planks or joggling - even today. The planking was set with gel CA. Gorilla sells it in a nice bottle with a metal pin in the cap to keep the spout open. It would up taking 3 of these bottles to complete the deck. The planks are cut at a 45 on the ends along the fore and aft access hatches, to try and hide this seam as much as possible. Once the deck was down, I scraped it. The glue is more resistant than the basswood is, so sanding would have scalloped the wood between seams. Scraping makes everything level. Some lite sanding, more to polish than remove anything, was done last. I had planned to stain the deck a very light grayish tint, but an active naval vessel gets holy-stoned regularly and wouldn't be gray as the ships that sit at a dock today are. In all it took 455 pieces to complete the deck and there wasn't any scrap longer than 1 inch left over. In all I have 3/4" deck beams, 1/4" plywood, a layer of 4oz cloth and resin, and a 3/16" basswood deck - I don't recall why I designed it so heavy, but it certainly doesn't hurt the model at all, and I think the 3/16" square strip will prove to have been easier to set than the 1/16" x 1/4" planks Pride and Macedonian will get. The deck go a coat of water-based satin poly, and I stared working on hatch coamings, cap log, and waterways. The cabin skylight and two hatched forward of it, including the capstan, and all combined into one hatch where the battery is accessed, and which hides the aft ballast rod and main power switch. The cap logs Are 1/2" wide x 1/4" tall basswood that was tren'led, glued, and copper nailed, onto the deck, flush with the outside of the hull covering this seam completely. The the angled wood waterways were installed around the inside of the cap log, and the deck got a coat of oil-based satin poly. This actually leeched in and made the marker seams bleed a little. In hind sight, I think I'll go with paint over marker for seams in the future. The coamings got painted black. I'm not sure why the Navy painted deck fittings black. It was even common to paint to top surfaces of tops black. I wonder how many injuries and losses this cost the navy that white paint would have prevented. Anyway... Constellation didn't have "solid" bulwarks, but rather she had hammock irons bolted to her cap log. These were removed when Baltimore tried to pass her off as a frigate and tossed in the bilge. When the ship was restored as a sloop of war, they found all but one. These irons are designed to have wooden rails at their tops, inboard and out, and have holes so several lines can be run through them. The Navy in it's wisdom though, decided to wainscot them to appear as solid bulwarks, despite the additional splinter hazard that would be in battle. I wasn't making all those metal stanchions just to hide them under wood and tarps, so I made wood blocks sheathed in sheet bass, scribed to look like vertical wainscotting. It was the end of April by now, and the Baltimore Port Expo was in two weeks. I wanted to have hammocks in the bulwarks, as she appears in the portrait, but there was no time to figure this out, so I layered on some balsa and shaped it so it looked like tarps were laid over the hammocks. When I figure out how I'll represent the stowed hammocks, I can pull the balsa off easily enough. The bulwarks on, I made some fittings for the spencer masts; installed the eye bolts at the base of the masts; made some bollards (or whatever name they gave those posts), made and installed the catheads, which are laminated 1/16" basswood. I then started setting up a jury rig and her controls so she could sail at the Port Expo. I set her t'gallants and all three heads'ls this time around. By the night before the Expo, she was ready to go.

Sailing for the First Time by Jerry Todd Lieutenant   Posted: 6 days ago
In April 2011 I set a deadline to sail the model for the first time on July 10th. I had places to go and other things to get done, so I figured that was far enough ahead to have her ready in time. There were a lot of things that needed to get done if the model was going to sail; * Shape the still rough cut yards; fore course, fore tops'l, crossjack, and mizzen tops'l yards. * Complete the yard trusses with mast bands and banding to attach them to the yards * A gammon "iron" for the bowsprit. * Rudder control & steering. * New winch drum for braces (the originals with wood drums warped badly). * Sails for planned sailing suit; 3 tops'ls, spanker, and jib. She was basically jury-rigged, with all three course yards linked together to a single winch. July 9th's forcaste was for perfect weather, light northerly wind, blowing up the creek so if there was a problem, the model would drift back to me. Unfortunately, I wasn't ready by the 9th and the 10th was light, variable, fluky, 90°, and humid. The top mast fids were pulled and the topmasts lowered. The model with some tools, her ballast, and what I thought I might need were all placed in the truck the night before. The radio and main batter were put on charge. Next day we drove the couple of block down the street to the Sloop Cove public dock on Stoney Creek. The rig was raised, ballast attached, electronics connected and tested, and she went into the water. With her ballast and extra lead I had she still sat 2" high in the water. I set her out, but the iffy light wind sent he back, then she threatened to get tangled with a powerboat on a lift until I managed to squeek her out into open water. She sailed a bit, but just when she'd get moving the wind would shift or reflect off something and catch her aback. Then suddenly she stopped responding at all. Something of a gust caught her and she headed for a dock. I headed over, which meant swimming, and not being a great swimmer realized I should have brought my flotation vest from my sailboat along. It being so hot, the swim wasn't exactly unwelcome, but it was a lot of work. The model sailed right into the end of a dock about 100 feet away, bounced on her forestay, and basically parked there. I got her back to shore looking like a drowned cat myself, but there was no damage at all to the model. As it turned out, the main battery failed.

It's the detail that takes the time !!! by Ballast Commander   Posted: 7 days ago
Things are moving on although a late summer launch looks on the cards as I missed the intended spring launch but I am as happy as a pig in ......... !!!😊😊😊

Masts, mast steps, inside the hull, the rudder by Jerry Todd Lieutenant   Posted: 8 days ago
The model's lower masts are made of white cedar. These were cut square, a taper hand-planed in, made 8-sided, then round. The bands are the same brown paper tape the hull was covered in. A visit to the real ship in Baltimore to get measurements, and look at some artifacts netted me some bits of live oak original to the ship. The Navy began stockpiling live oak for ship-building in 1816 with the Gradual Increase Act. It was from these stockpiles that Constellation was built. These trees were as much as 200 years old when cut, so this wood I have could be as much as 400 years old. I wasn't sure how to incorporate this bit of the ship into the model, and opted to make the mast steps from it. One piece is the size of a business card and stamped USS Constellation 1854. I'll stamp the year she's finally finished and my name into that and install it as her builder's plate. The masts step on what I call her mechanical decks. These are simple 3/8" plywood panels where her mechanics and controls will be mounted. Beams were epoxied into the hull for them, and they are held in place with brass wood screws. The aft deck is where the mizzen steps and the rudder servo is mounted. The battery lies on it's own deck just abaft the main mast as low as it can possibly be inside the hull. The cross-section drawing shows deck beams, decks, ballast rods, the external ballast, etc etc etc. The rudder is made from Plexiglas as shown in it's drawing. A brass tube passes through the stern that the rudder's head just fits into. There's no room behind the rudder head for a bell-crank setup to work, so I again went with real boat tech and installed a tiller, made of copper plate soldiered to a set-collar. There's a couple of pictures of the aluminum tubes for the ballast rods in there. You may want to right-click on an image, like the drawings, and "View Image" then click on it to see it full size and legible. Use the browser's "back" button to get out of that.

water, paint, copper by Jerry Todd Lieutenant   Posted: 8 days ago
The gun deck isn't modeled. I was building a model intended to sail in open water and didn't want to deal with open gun ports, hatches, etc. After glassing the hull, she got beams for the spar deck installed. 3/4" x 3/4", they're probably a bit more than was needed. Tubes were installed for 5/16" stainless threaded rods that would hold her external ballast on. The forward one will be disguised as her galley stovepipe, the aft one is hidden under the cabin skylight. The ballast is a 2" i.d. PVC pipe about 4 feet long, filled with lead bird-shot, and weighing some 42 pounds. With that much done, I took her to the creek to see her float, but I forgot the rods. A few days later I took her out again, remembering the rods, and put her lower masts in her. Now baptized, I applied the moldings and trim on her stern, and built up her enclosed head. Her gunport were molded in resin in the closed position with the guns clamped in the openings and a tampion in the muzzles. These were epoxied into gunports cut from the outer layer of glass and wood battens, leaving the matting in place as a backer. Then she got some paint, mainly because I was getting tired of her looking like a barkless log. The bottom was painted with copper paint, but three rolls of 1/2" wide peel-n-stick tape had just arrived and I started into coppering her bottom right off. Copper plates are nailed on with copper nails with counter-sunk heads through pre-punched holes in the copper sheets. The are FLAT with with a little hollow where they're driven in just beyond flush with the surface. They are NOT round headed nor look like rivets as so many models insist are doing. I pressed an impression of the nails into the face of each plate. Installing them pushes this dent back out and leaves a little circle that looks as it should. It took about a week to do one side, and I took a break to make the tops for the lower masts, then continued onto coppering the other side. It was bright and beautiful when finished, but it wouldn't stay that way. Copper doesn't turn green when submerged, any copper coin will show you it turns brown. I wanted her bottom to brown somewhat, but not too much, and I figured to let that happen naturally. When it got where I wanted it, I'd clear-coat it to lock it in. Two yards of Dupont Supplex cloth was ordered to make her sails. This is the stuff SC&H used on their square-rigger kits and it's great for making sails. Being a nylon, you cut it with a hot-knife, and use a pointed tip in a soldering iron to make grommets. I drew on the panel seams with a .03 marker as even the finest stitching is over scale even at 1:36. Top-cloths, corner reinforces, reef bands, etc, are all cut from the same cloth and glued on with fabric adhesive. The only sewing was of the bolt-ropes. These are done by hand much the way real ones are - I've sewn a few miles of real bolt ropes in my time. There's really no substitute for this if you want a functional scale appearing sail. A machine can't sew it properly, in the right position, or securely.

Constellation by Jerry Todd Lieutenant   Posted: 8 days ago
This model was started in February of 1999, and has been worked on, at best, in fits and starts. While progress has been made, and it's capable of sailing, it's far from finished. It began as plywood paneling pulled from the walls of my first house and cut into frames. It was to be planked with white pine strips, also scraps from remodeling, but I was distracted by a book. Nasty things books, put all sorts of ideas in your head. I got the idea of making a plug for a mold so I could turn out THREE hulls! One for me, one for sale, and one to be donated to the real ship. To that end, and with the inspiration of the book, instead of planking, I battened the hull and sheathed it with brown paper wet-n-stick packing tape. Let's just say, that wasn't a good idea and leave it at that. A lot of life changes happened; moved to a farm; got unmarried, sold the farm, got an apartment, got a house with a workshop, and 10 years later, recommenced work on the model. I continued on with the original plan for about a day when I shifted gears and decided to glass the "plug" and make it a hull. I proceeded to prep it to that end, but looking back, what I should have done was strip it down the the forms and start again, planking it properly. Instead, I covered the outside with 4oz cloth, filled between the battens with poly resin and glass matting. The images show the model from it's start to it's glassing, though the site won't allow me to dictate the order in which they're presented - sorry for that. The model is of the American sloop of war Constellation launched in 1855, and as she appeared in Naples in 1856 based on a painting of her by Thomas deSimone. She is 1:36 scale; 1 inch = 3 feet. Beam: 13-5/8" (34.6 cm) Length on deck: 61" (154.9 cm) Length between perpendiculars (American): 59-1/8" (150.2 cm) Draft, without ballast keel: 7" (17.8 cm) With 3-1/2" ballast keel: 10-1/2" (26.7 cm) Weight, with ballast: Approx. 100 pounds (45.36 kg) Length over the rig: 95" (241.3 cm) Width over the rig: 30.5" (77.5 cm) ~ Main yard w/o stuns'l booms. Height bottom of keel to main truck, without ballast keel: 65" (165.1 cm) With ballast keel: 69" (175.3 cm) Total Sail Area: 2,807.01 square inches in 17 sails (19.5 sf, 18,110 scm, 1.8 sqm) Working Sail Area: 1,836.1square inches in 13 sails (12.75 sf, 11,845 scm, 1.2 sqm)

Motor suppression by colinhubbard Fleet Admiral!   Posted: 17 days ago
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 lakeside 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.

What battery do you choose? by RNinMunich Fleet Admiral!   Posted: 22 days ago
Strangely no one has answered an important part of your original question !? 🤔 How to calculate running time! Simply put; divide the capacity of the battery in amp-hours (AH) by the current in amps (A) drawn by the load. AH/A = H !! Step 1; measure the max current drawn A(max) by the motor under load; i.e. full speed ahead in water - hang on tight!. If not possible then use the max current data of the motor at the voltage you intend to use. Step 2; check the capacity of your battery; usually given in mAH for some peculiar reason! Divide by 1000 to get AH. Divide the capacity in AH by the max current in A =A(max). Result is the theoretical time that the fully charged battery can deliver the current required; i.e. runtime at full speed. Theoretical because in practise the usable capacity will be a bit less than nominal depending on the age and condition of the battery, ambient temperature etc. Also you won't want to completely discharge the battery; it won't like it 😡 Step 3; measure current at a mid-range throttle setting 'cruising' - A(cruise). Again divide capacity AH by A(cruise). result is 'cruising time in hours. If measuring not possible use the motor current data given at maximum efficiency. Should give a reasonable approximation. Example: motor current at full speed = 10A. Battery capacity 7000mAH = 7AH. Max theoretical runtime at full speed = 7/10Hr. Approx 42 minutes. Cruising current; 5A. Cruising time = 7/5Hr = 1.4Hr. Approx. 84 minutes. Use the highest capacity batt. you can get in without upsetting stability etc.! If you need ballast use a bigger battery; then you have 'payload ballast' instead of JUST ballast. Minimise current drain by; ensuring drive train is perfectly inline, well lubricated, prop is as small as possible for the desired performance (trial and error!). Hope this lot helps, not space science but a few basic rules! 😉 Happy sailing and lots o' fun. Cheers Doug 😎

What battery do you choose? by sonar Fleet Admiral!   Posted: 26 days ago
My esc is rated at 24 volts My motors and there are two them them are rated at 12 volts to 30 volts so I use 2 x 12 volt batteries. The size of the batteries depend on the size of the boat. Another model has a 7.2 motor and the esc can run up to 11.1 volts so I use a 7.2 battery for this as the model is small the battery is also small.. The larger the boat the larger the battery that can be used. Mine are also used as part of the ballast.. so the large batteries have a dual purpose for my tug...

Battery problems by Patto Chief Petty Officer   Posted: 1 month ago
thanks Dave i got a seaking 120a watercoold brushless ESC by Hobbywing which handles the power well. Same motor as before got a 38m 2 blade prop looking for a 3 blade. i was originally useing the 12v battery to run the motor but it was no good now use a lipo which i have installed under the deck in front of the motor.the large battery is running the watercooling pump and is also the prefect weight for ballast.NO problems with the salt water as i have got stainless steel, brass and copper fittings and a good flush threw the cooling system with fresh water. might be some time before i can put up a video because the council is draining the pool next week for the annual winter maintenance which is a bummer as there other suitable ponds handy. cheers Allan

DAMEN STAN 4207 by RHBaker Admiral   Posted: 1 month ago
First open water test went well, but with two caveats: 1) Would like to increase performance somewhat, closer to her looks. The initial tests of the unfinished hull showed adequate performance. As the detail and superstructure have been added, it has deteriorated. The increased weight of over 2 lbs has increased draft and wetted area, thus drag. 2) The bow is slightly low. Decided the best way to improve performance would be to increase the NiMh battery output from 7.2 to 9.6 volts. Thus added two more cells to the forward “C” cell holder. Also increased the LED resistor capacity and added a voltage reducer to avoid burning out the lights and bow thruster at this new voltage. By examining the drawings and the model layout decided to tackle the second by moving the forward battery carrier from just in front of, to just behind, the centre of gravity. Fortunately the Damen drawings show the C of G location. This increased the stern draught by about 1/4”, with the bow similarly decreased. Also reduced the stern ballast to about 3 oz. A further open water test showed an nice improvement in speed with the model now sitting on the waterline. Running time exceeds an hour, she also looks trim and purposeful. Think this is about as fast as an 9.6 NiMh installation will operate. Adding more cells will increase weight, adding to the draught. Am toying with trying a LI-PO installation in the future. This will provide increased voltage with a weight reduction, but rather costly though. Have decided to enjoy the model as she currently is; there is plenty to look at with the working fire hydrant, the bow thruster, the work and navigation lights. Will concentrate on launching and making the RIB operate, have some ideas on how to do this and will report in due course.

Sir Kay Round Table Class Minesweeper 1:48 scale by Caldercraft by saltysnogbad Chief Petty Officer   Posted: 1 month ago
Recently constructed ballasted and tested radio controlled model boat with working searchlight, navigation lights and Ship's Bell. Needs finishing by repainting, weathering to suit and a few minor additions (e.g. Anchor - supplied). Includes: Graupner HOTT may-10 transmitter and receiver JP ENERG-PRO NiMH flat 7.5v battery NiMH Battery Charger 230 457RE5401 Electric Motor ESC Viper Marine 15 Action Electronics P43 relay switches Mylar 5m round speaker for bell Spare ballast £150:00 Ono Collection only, please, due to weight of ballast. Based in Weston-super-Mare, Somerset. Selling to fund purchase of another - fun is in the making!

Adolph Bermpohl by ChrisPSR Recruit   Posted: 1 month ago
[Score: 9/10] 79"/4400g Adolph Bermpohl Capable of 10mph and a runtime of 5mins Triple Propellors (3 Blade 25mm) Direct Drive to a 3 motors (3 Blade) Powered by LiPoly (11.1v) 3Amp/h Batteries Controlled Through Graupner (15Amps) ESC - Comments: My build and adaption of safety vessel carrying smaller stern carried lifeboat "The Vega Sac" now sold on. The drop down stern door has been made solid and she is now a self contained motor lifeboat vessel. Very manoeuvrable, quick and ballasted down rides most pond water that can be thrown at her. Currently in build, motors installed.

Phantom by ChrisPSR Recruit   Posted: 1 month ago
[Score: 5/10] 39"/3400g Phantom Capable of 1mph and a runtime of 120mins Powered by LiPoly (7.4v) 2Amp/h Batteries - Comments: AMYA type One Meter racing yacht raced in NW., Britain. Sister Ship built as IOM., is currently up for sale ex., IOM., bits + new factory sealed sails; spars; rigging & ballast all of which differ to IOM and which are AMYA., Class 'OM'