Yet to be named launch
Two or three years ago an older modeler passed on and left his tools, parts and pieces behind. As is often the case, the son had little interest in the hobby so advertised the items for sale. I don't remember where I even saw the ad, but responded more out of curiosity than anything else. The son and I corresponded via email a few times with him sending images of box-lots of what was available, Towards the end of our correspondence he mentioned there was a boat hull that he knew nothing about, but apparently had not generated any interest and I could have it for a few dollars and shipping. I didn't need another hull and particularly didn't need a 'glass lapstrake boat, but thought it might be worth something down-stream as trading material, or someone may want it. The alternative was it would end up in a New Jersey landfill. ️
I received it about a week later, checked it out, and shelved it in the "stash" group.
A while ago I was idly thumbing through a book with page after page of study plans and blew by a launch-type hull that was carvel planked. A couple of days later the plan resurfaced in my mind's eye and I looked it up again and thought the 'glass hull in a 1:8 scale would be close enough to loosely emulate these lines. The inspiration drawings were drawn by a fellow named Nelson Zimmer out of the greater Detroit MI area. My apologies to Mr. Zimmer as I've taken some subtle liberties with his drawing, all the while keeping the basic profile of his design. His title for the boat was "Utility Launch" at 23'3" and the hull I have is 35". Close enough for my purposes.
In this opening "chapter' I have drilled the shaft log hole, determined the log angle, and built a platform for the motor and drive pulley. Given enough room I like the timing belt method of propulsion as they're not real particular about alignment, (that's not to say some care isn't necessary to set up the drive,) they just seem to be quieter, plus one can experiment with different pulleys to come to a good efficient RPM for the propeller.
1. A cursory general beginning.
2. determining that everything is "on the level." (This of course starts with the bench the build is on)
3. The propulsion will be a six volt system. One larger battery didn't fit well anywhere in the hull given the open midships area, so I tried two smaller batts in the ends which will be hooked up in parallel. There was some ballast required anyway, so doing a tub test proved this a viable solution.
4, 5, & 6. The forward and main bulkheads. After the time invested in these, I decided both need some modifications. Once the forward deck is in place retrieving the forward battery can be done through the hatch, but it would have been tight with the middle open cockpit benches, flooring, and "stuff". Keeping in mind this was only a 23' launch the 1:1 main bulkhead was originally designed with the bi-fold doors as shown which was a help to access the engine. I'm thinking of reconfiguring this arrangement as well.
I'd name this "Knot Likely", but it's knot a speed likely boat...
2 months ago
Island Freighter "Son Of Jamaica"
This correctly titled would be considered a "Built Log".
The subject is a heavily kit-bashed Lindberg North Atlantic Fishing Trawler.
It was built in 2012 and modified from the described kit not only in appearance, but also to include basic RC capabilities. Forward, reverse, rudder, with port and starboard lights.
This was an exercise undertaken on a whim to discover if the Lindberg "fleet" of this scale could be successfully RC'd. The kit-bashing aspect was just to create something different. Utilizing the trawler, tuna boat, tug, lightship, and shrimper and building each stock, then building a second model of each one to a different style/configuration, would create a fleet of boats that could easily fit in the back of a standard sedan with room to spare. Another plus is the ability to carry the boat and radio to the water in one trip.
The only real downside is the pond being run in has to be pretty flat as a duck wake could be problematic.
1. An image of the final result.
2. & 3. Accomplishing float tests in a wall paper wetting trough. This hull comes in two parts and is designed for a static display. The first test included checking for any leaks after joining the hull halves with epoxy.
4. & 5. Adding the electronics and superstructure parts that will be used during the build to establish a working waterline and determine a guesstimate as to how much ballast will be needed.
6. Comparing a box stock quick build as Lindberg provided, against the potential deviations.
1 year ago
Laying the deck on this build was a little out of the ordinary. I had incorporated a false deck to stiffen everything and minimize the chances of introducing a twist to the hull while the planking went on. Even with the deck and the shear strakes installed I was constantly checking the trueness until there were five or six strakes on both sides. Even then I'd check occasionally just to be sure.
Once the hull was planked and the outside sanded, filled, sanded again, and 'glassed, the false deck had to be cut off so the inside could be tended to.
'Glassing part of the inside and epoxying the rest was un-eventful. Placing the mounts for the electronics, motor, and battery followed.
After the house size was determined, the coaming built and installed, the false deck was cut to fit the coaming and reinstalled.
The waterways were soaked, bent to shape and glued in.
Next the timberheads were placed inside the bulwarks, then all of it was sealed and painted before the deck and cap rails were built and added so the paint cutting in wasn't so tedious.
Rather than waterproof the false deck with epoxy I cut and laid a layer of .018 styrene plastic over the entire area to be planked with decking. My theory (and perhaps flawed,) was/is that if I ever wanted to add, repair, or modify anything on deck the epoxy under the deck would make everything from the deck planks all the way through to the sub-deck one solid piece. The styrene would waterproof the false deck, but would serve as a good barrier should any water ever get under the deck boards.
The decking wasn't nibbed as I told myself this was a working tug, not a yacht. Using poplar for the planks provided a good base for painting which I had intended to do, but after scraping and sanding thought what could go wrong with staining? Intending to paint it anyway, if the stain didn't work nothing was lost.
I had a stash of Rit fabric dye in gray, brown, and black which I used to stain the dock piles on a couple of previous builds which although water based didn't raise the grain to an alarming rate so why not try it here?
A couple of coats of stain allowed to dry, then followed up with a scrubbing with a bronze-wool pad provided (to me anyway,) a plausible work deck color. Adding copious amounts of sealer, and a couple coats of MinWax dead flat coating has provided what I think I'll go with at least for the time being. Should the deck get boring, there's still the paint option.
1-4 Laying the deck with poplar wood, onto styrene, with
5,6, and 7 the deck after the stain, scrubbing with the
bronze wool, and the sealer/finish coats.
1 year ago
There isn't a formal name for this tug yet. There are a couple of names floating around, but I'm waiting for the personality to develop a little more before I commit.
This build will hopefully represent a turn of the century harbor steam tug. She would have been employed shuttling barges around a local area and would usually tow her charge on the hip. It's totally scratch built and not representative of any particular boat, but of a class.
I gleaned photos of the grand old tugs and made notes of the details I wanted to incorporate and although an item here and there may be unlikely, that's the beauty of a phantom build...almost anything (within real possibility,) goes.
This build is 1:18 scale and represents a boat about 86 feet. Reverse stem, tumblehome counter, timber (barge) fenders, and a few extra's here and there. She's 55" long, 48-50 pounds ballasted, electric 2:1 reduction belt drive, to a 4 1/2" four blade wheel.
At this point the build is underway, so the first several "chapters" will bring the build up to date.
I'm a really slow builder. I often take two steps forward and one step back, but I do enjoy the journey.......
2 years ago