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HI Robert, As Tommy3917 says Poundland or equivalent are a good source. Also the net bags that fruit and veg are 'packed' In. It depends of course on the scale but I have found many colours and mesh sizes this way. For floats or weights think of craft shops. You can get various sizes of polystyrene balls, beads and wood balls. Fishing tackle shop or car boot for small lead weight - but remember lead must be painted (best with two part epoxy)to avoid polution.
[Score: 8/10] 34" Atlas - Thames Lighter Capable of 2mph and a runtime of 60mins Single Propellor (3 Blade 30mm) Direct Drive Powered by NiCad (4.8v) 2Amp/h Batteries - Comments: This was built from an MMI woodpack and free plan. It has styrene chines and floor. An electric drive was added so the model can be either tpwed or self-propelled. Many accessories have been added that can be fitted In any number of cpmbinations to create different craft with very different looks and purposes. Great fun and I never tire of adding new accessories or sailing It.
[Score: 8/10] 12" Footy Thames Sailing Barge Capable of 2mph and a runtime of 60mins Powered by NiMH (4.8v) 2Amp/h Batteries - Comments: Home designed and built from a commercial moulded styrene hull. Scale approx. 1/80th. all above deck detail hand made as no commercial products available - subject of MMI 2 part article winter 2014.
HI Lubberland, A boat after my own heart! Looks really good. Like the level of detail, even If you can't see It on the water. Which sails are controlled by the winch? How successful Is the sailing peformance with all that sail area aft? Regards, Cap'n Jim.
[Score: 5/10] 6" Micro sail 'Half Footy' Scow Capable of 1mph and a runtime of 30mins Powered by NiMH (4.8v) 1Amp/h Batteries - Comments: Built to see If I could fit It all Into a hull length of 6" (150mm) and to then see If I could make It sail. I could and It does! Not the best sailor though but learnt a lot from It. Styrene hull, drafting film sails with a battery (4x AAAA) pod as ballast In the keel. 2ch RC, a minI as sail winch on main and foresail with a microservo for the rudder. See photo gallery for more.
Hi, You don't see too many of these around but there are a number of plans available. In all the time I've had this I've not yet had a race with another! (You tend not to see yachts sailing In car parks...) Still, fun to sail - and a different technique to control, so needs practice. As with the full size land yachts the best Is sailing on two wheels. The big difference Is that you keep your feet dry to recover a capsized yacht! 😊 Regards, Cap'n Jim.
Hi, Thanks. Go for the footy! While this was fun to build there aren't that many days when I get a good sail out of this one. The wind close to the water Is very awkward and models need to be tall (in proportion to the length) which makes 'scale' models Indifferent sailors. Still worth building but a footy (in all Its forms) provides a greater range of good sailing conditions. I have a scale footy Thames Sailing Barge (scratch built to my own design) and while good It to can't compete with Footy Class boats for the variety of conditions that are good for sailing. Regards, Capn Jim.
See forum and my harbour (CapnJim) for more details. Just some footage of my weathered Model Slipways Puffer - now some years old but still cruisin'. Still appreciating the model and Is one of my favourites. One day I'll build a puffer at 1/32nd. but for now this does very well. Easy build but lots of opportunities to add detail. This has all the bells and whistles (well 'steam' whistle, smoke generator and puffer engine sound at least). Would fit In a briefcase but still able to stay afloat against the wash of bigger boats or blustery winds. Surprisingly, steers well when going astern. Speed with supplied motor about 2mph ' but this Is faster than scale by a margin. Clip prepared for YouTube resolution so best not viewed full screen.
The final construction job on the hull was to fit the cabin/cockpit sides which had been broken off. With the basic hull completed many of the original fittings were reattached after cleaning. The original gooseneck could not be salvaged however and a new brass one was fitted. A new suite of sails was made using the original, very ripe ones, as a pattern. The material came from a very cheap children tent that had seen better days. The mainsail was a success but the foresail needs to be remade as on the water It Isn't fully effective and doesn't have a good shape. The rigging was made to allow the boat to be de-rigged quickly. This Is satisfactory but would benefit from the stays being permanently attached to, rather than simply hooked Into, the eyes screwed Into the deck as they get tangled In transit. On the water my Collie has proved to be a good sailor In most weather and great fun to sail. She Isn't the fastest around being easily beaten by some modern RTR models ' the difference Is that I've made this one mine and we'll be sailing together for some time yet!
Part 3 While the hull was watertight It didn't feel very rigid and I was concerned that the hull material might be brittle with age. I therefore decided to fit fore and aft frames In the hull. Using templates made to the outer hull form and reduced by the hull thickness; plywood frames were cut out with lightening/access holes and epoxied In place. Following this attention was given to the RC gear ' primarily the working/fitting of the servos. As only a simple extended arm high torque servo was Intended for sail control the geometry was simple enough. Tubes were fitted In the deck for the sheet control and run back Into the hull to the servo positions (see photo). For durability the sheet outlets on deck were made of brass tubing with plastic tubing Inside. The RX and battery pack were boxed In case of water Ingress (although, so far, this has proved unnecessary 😀 ). The original deck (plywood with printed planking) was In good condition and was sanded down and given a number of coats of French polish until the deck had a pleasing smooth and gloss finish.
Looking at comments on the Internet I noted that the original rudder was said to be a little small and would benefit from being changed. First, lengthening It to give better bite when heeling. Second, adding a fin In line with the keel to give some protection from knocks and also to help avoid picking up weed by giving the fin a sweep backwards to push weed downward and under the rudder. Finally by projecting the rudder extension forward and fairing It Into the line of the fin an element of (counter)balance could be achieved to reduce servo strain. The rudder was replaced with wood, shaped and keyed to a new rudder shaft. The fin, also of wood, was then added by pinning plus epoxy and then the fairing process repeated. The hull was then stripped back, smoothed and primed. Next a new keel ballast weight was shaped In wood, then used as a plug to make and mould and cast (in lead) a copy with embedded pins to fit Into holes drilled up through the keel. The new ballast was fitted, epoxied In place and faired In as before. With this the hull was complete and could be painted.
I acquired this boat, dated from the 1970s, at a car boot sail for £7. She wasn't In too bad a state but needed refurbishment, a new suit of sails (the originals being 'ripe') and re-rigging (there was none!). The keel was cracked at the join with the hull and the two halves were separating plus the lead ballast was missing. It also had no fin forward of the rudder leaving the rudder exposed to knocks. She had never been Radio Controlled and while the sailing fittings were salvageable the oval cabin windows were either missing, broken or the 'glass' badly misted. There were no other deck fittings. Before starting serious work I made a cradle and researched the model on the Internet to get an Idea of the 'spirit' of the model and formulate my plans. I managed to find Images of the boxed kit and Its plans and determined that mine was an early Collie, not a Collie II that came later. The first job was to strip everything off, repair the keel and add the fin In front of the rudder. Epoxy resin (bound with masking tape until fully hardened) was used to stabilize the cracks and strengthen the joint. Car body filler was then added to further strengthen and blend the join prior to sanding and fairing Into the hull.
HI Des, On Styrene vs. Fibreglass or wood. A matter of personal preference but I have noted over the years that styrene Is great for smaller hulls, very malleable and welded joints seem to be forever. Easy to repair and even to rebuild If required. GRP/fibreglass In larger hulls Is essentially self supporting (apart from transverse struts across the beam) and gloss coat can be finished coat. Have never used on smaller hulls, perhaps a prejudice but It doesn't appeal. Structural repairs are easy but gel coat repairs less so. I prefer wood for 'proper' plank on frame but can achieve same In styrene, especially on small hulls. Personally I think styrene and wood/plywood are Interchangeable for chined hulls large(ish) or small. For scratch built round bilge hulls there Isn't, In my view, an alternative to wood (I don't want to make a 'plug' and then a fibreglass mould - I only want one!) Sorry for the ramble but hope you can see where I'm coming from even If It doesn't really Inform! Cap'n Jim.
Thanks. She's now some years old but still giving a lot of pleasure - was sailing her last Wed.. Has proved to be very sea (pond) worthy and although she bobs In the wake of bigger boats doesn't take In water. Prefer the somewhat ragged look but have seen others with much cleaner presentation and they look good as well. Either way a great kit.
Hi, A great show with the usual clubs represented - Basingstoke, Southwater Dabblers, Springbok Mariners, Portsmouth Display Team and Portsmouth MBS, Phoenix, Swiss Cottage, Southern Model Lifeboats and a couple of others whose names I'm afraid I can't remember. It rained! Attendance from my perspective was not that high, the two trade stands did attend and I think were rewarded with decent business. Plenty of good boats and chat between clubs/club members and well worth the day. Portsmouth Display Team's fort Is looking really good and promises to be an amazing spectacle when given Its planned first outing at Canoe Lake later this year. (May?) Plenty of other high quality models as well. I hope the new venue next year has more parking - the car park was full before 9am.
HI Deepstar, I've found when cutting narrow strips that they curl and bend significantly. The way to avoid most of this Is to use a steel rule to cut up to say 0.5"(12mm) from each end. Keep scoring until you cut through, then finish by cutting through to each end - hey presto straight narrow strips! Capn Jim.
[Score: 5/10] 34" Freelance MTB Capable of 3mph and a runtime of 50mins Twin Propellors (3 Blade 30mm) Direct Drive to a Unknown (3 Blade) Powered by Lead Acid (6v) 4Amp/h Batteries Controlled Through Futaba (10Amps) ESC - Comments: Refurbished MTB with additional near scale, but not specific to 1 type, detail. Looks good with converted German Tank Soldiers (approx. 1/35th. scale) figures. Am planning to rework all electrics RC and power will then be a good model!
HI Alan, Are you planning to sail without a drop keel (I see no signs of a keel box?)? I have one or two attempts to do this but unless at larger scales make the boat very tender. Adding an auxilliary motor can be very useful but of course means you can't race It. I have an HFM kit of similar size, built 13 years ago and still giving great pleasure (no motor - See 'Lady Anne' photo gallery). Good luck wih the build. In case you're not aware the 'Ivor Bittle' web site Is very good for technicalities on Thames Sailing Barges along side the AMBO. Cap'n Jim.
[Score: 8/10] 27"/4000g River Otter Capable of 4mph and a runtime of 60mins Single Propellor (3 Blade 40mm) Direct Drive to a Torpedo 500 (3 Blade) Powered by NiMH (7.2v) 6Amp/h Batteries Controlled Through Unknown (15Amps) ESC - Comments: Purchased built (poorly) from a Metcalf Mouldings kit (River Star). Am gradually tidying up, refurbishing, modifying and adding detail. Delightful model to sail, well worth the effort. Handles well, even going astern. Sails at above scale speed (1/12th. scale) and needs the lead ballast added. Am thinking about using to tow a scale lighter for added fun an excitement! Have now refurbished and renamed 'River Otter'. Have also built a Thames Lighter to tow. Will put details up on site soon.
[Score: 6/10] 29" Graupner Collie (or Collie II ??) Capable of 3mph and a runtime of 120mins Powered by NiCad (4.8v) 2Amp/h Batteries - Comments: Bought at a car boot sale and refurbished (not rebuilt) but Is still not performing as I think It should. Consequently will re-rig and balance plus add a more powerful sail servo. Not sure If It's a Collie or Collie II (but the original label just says 'COLLIE'). Remade sails from a cheaper kids light weight tent In what I think was the original box picture colours.
Joined after Easter. Very friendly, really for leisure and pleasure sailors, great pond and non-members welcomed to the pond side even when the club Is meeting. Scale and non-scale, yachts and cruisers, scratch built and RTR they have members who do It all. Cap'n Jim.
Trials at home (easily done since the model Is so small) confirmed the freeboard, balance (virtually no additional ballast required) and also an Indication of her speed - Initially from one end of the bath the other! AmalfI has proved to be quit stable In light and even fresh winds and the bow waves of larger models. With the ability to remove the netting I'm quite happy to sail her In fresh even moderately gusty winds and she takes In virtually no water. Using a 12' (3.5m) home 'swimming' pool she sails well and I use home made buoys to provide a steering course - at this size It's practical and fun If you can't get to the local pond/lake. So - I'm happy with the conversion and given the reasonable price of the kit and the use of mainly spare parts/scrap In her conversion a successful project.
Visually the main addition Is the nets. After a brief check on the Internet some fine black netting was found and small plastic beads painted orange added to the top edge (as floats). Hooks were made to make them removable and eyes, sheets and other fittings added to the mast and booms to add realism. The bow fender was made of fimo, painted with an embedded chain and side fender from dowel plugs rounded again with eyes and chains added. Two figures found at a car boot were modified to Captain and seaman and their poses adjusted to a natural position. The seaman stepping on the forward hatch also provides a convenient means of lifting the hatch quickly to get to the main switch. Additional netting and coils of rope were soaked In watered down PVA to stiffen them and superglued In position on the deck providing some 'clutter'. The cabin was roof was veneered for no particular reason (!) but additional windows with frames, hatch and door hinges, portholes (brass tarpaulin eyes with glazing), lifebuoys, searchlight, foghorn etc. were all home made from scrap. The total weight of the additional fittings (being wood, plastic etc.) Is very small with even the netting only adding 8gms.but In my view brings the model to life.
Before applying the hull chines the RC was tested, then Installed and re-tested, checking that It could be removed as required and would not Interfere with the chine skins. A balance check was also made to ensure that the weight distribution wasn't too far out leaving just the question mark about draught and freeboard! The removable cabin was made to fit Inside the coaming. Using Velcro the receiver, being light, Is fitted up Inside the cabin which keeps It dry and a little away from the electrics. The skins fitted easily with little extra fillets to fill the gap made by adding strips to the bottom of some frames. The whole was sanded down, primed and Initially sealed. Next to complete the model was the detailing. To be continued.
The motor mounting was aligned to the prop. shaft between two frames (the tube was cut to length prior to Installation). A platform was made to hold the minI servo used for steering and the pushrods made and trial fitted (for operation and possible future removal If necessary). After trial fitting the deck and hold locations the deck was planked with 1mm strip 3mm wide. Although extra weight and effort the effect does Improve the appearance - permanent Ink along one strip edge simulates the caulking. The switch was located under the forward hold and the wiring run back to the main hold. After planking and trimming the keel, frames and decking were assembled (with motor, servo and switch In place) for a final fit and access check before permanent gluing. The hull was now ready for the chines and bottom by pin (temporary)and gluing.
The kit was/is In-expensive and seemed to have possibilities as a small RC model. After obtaining the kit I did some basic calculations on buoyancy (i.e. I weighed the boat and all the extra kit plus calculated simple volume of hull below waterline) to see If It would float with all the extra gear - although not a lot of freeboard It looked possible -especially If I Increased the displacement a little. The plan was studied next to check on the practical side of conversion and getting everything to fit, while still keep the centre of gravity low and properly positioned along the keel - again It seemed to work. The keel was cut to accommodate the prop. tube and a small strip was added to the keel with skeg to take the rudder bottom bearing. Reinforcement was added to the sides of the keel where It was cut for the prop. shaft and rudder tube and the frames adjusted to fit. The rudder assembly was made and fitted In front of the transom - allowing for servo pushrods to operate It without Interference of the frames, holes In the transom or the deck. All the frames had to but cut with lightening holes and also to provide much needed access/space for the motor, batteries, servo, ESC, switch and receiver. Additional strips were added to the rear frame bottom edges to (marginally) Increase the displacement when the skin was added by making them deeper below the waterline.
Built out of house guttering to a scale equivalent to model railways HO the layout Is approx. 4 x 3 ft. Mounted In a wooden frame and provided with a protective see through cover It fits Into the car and can go anywhere. It has been an on-going project to build RC boats to suit. Those used at present are commercial products (loa 5" (125mm)) with simple two channel two prop drives - not proportional but with forward and reverse and by operating one or both props plus reverse steering Is OK. Battery life limited to 6-8 minutes with similar recharge time. Built largely from scrap and odds and ends the project cost well under £80. The Idea Is/was to have several units and link them together to make a large layout!
Thanks Hammer. Now I understand the shot of the hold and winches. Love the detail - takes a lot beat boats like this In scale sail. Food for thought on the keel - I need a bit more drop so swing centreboard Isn't quite going to do It but thanks for the Info. Are you planning a further photo gallery on Albatross - It certainly looks like plenty to cover. Regards, Cap'n Jim.
HI Fireboat, MMI ran the event In three different forms over two seasons (arond 2007/8) - a circular gutter track with as many circuits as possible and also 3 circuits In shortest time, then drag racing - straight track knock ot competition. As far as I know they have no plans to do more. They were great fun and pulled a lo of Interest, Incuding from youngsters because they were simple and cheap - but actually delivered! I have a number of build shots the Clyde Puffer build that I'll post. Cap'n Jim.
HI Stephen, The Likes and My Posts sound good! As you'll already be aware the harbour database choices are never going to satisfy everybody and there Is only a finite amount of material/questions you can collect/ask. I think It would help me, and perhaps others, If there was a (developing?) statement on the site Indicating the aims and general approach to Its development. In this way I could try and keep any suggestions within practical bounds and within the consensus(?) view of Its stakeholders (whoever they are considered to be). I am very conscious of not wanting to Increase your workload with Irrelavances or pushing In a direction that does not have purpose or support. Now In answer to your reply. I'm assuming that the Idea of the harbour Is more than logging your own boats and that over time there might be some directory or search capability for others to see other members with similar models/interests? In such a case the database needs to be as comprehensive as possible but with summarized categories of the most vital parameters of a boat - any boat. At present, and given the development of the site (I'm trying to catch up!) I can see why you have the form as Is. Given the rapid development of the membership, and I can see It as being exponential, you might be at a crucial point In leaving well alone and adding categories randomly as they are suggested or going for a significant makeover to set It up for the future - just a thought? Questions raised are: Type of Model: Everything I think? Currently Incomplete and a very difficult call to limit to say <15-20 as a practical limit, (Amphibious, Airboats, and sail or power to each of working vessel, racing boat, pleasure craft, naval ship etc..) Boat Length: 5 to 200 Inches - there are commercal RC boats of 4" loa, I have some. Boat Weight: 500g to 20kg, my solar boats and a 6" scow come In under 200gms plus large naval ships can be greater than 20Kgs these days. - New fields - Beam: 1 to 30 Inches - good Idea If there Is a use/purpose for the parameter - I think so. Draft: 0 to 12 Inches, some sailing boats have drop keels In excess of this although most ponds might say 12" Is all they would claim. ---------------- Motor Type: Brushed, Brushless, Steam, IC, (Include "not powered"?) - can't think of any others. - Everything below only If powered - Drive Type: Belt, Chain, Geared, Direct Number of Props: Single, Twin, Triple, (Include "4 or more"?) Max Constant Amps: 5A to 150A - needs from <1Amp, 1,3,5? Battery type: Everything I think? Amp/h: 1 to 15 Prop Type: 2 to 5 Blade - propulsion? Airboats - Fan, Waterjet, paddlewheel, oared.. ------------------------------------------- Average Run Time: 5 to 120 minutes Speed: 0 to 15mph (maybe It should go up to 50mph? ) - Definitely more than 15 - Fast electrics these days are amazingly fast! Sorry It's so long. Hope It Is useful. Happy to continue the chat If you have the time/inclination! Won't be offended If you choose to leave well alone. Regards, Jim Dewar (Cap'n Jim)