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Ship Reference Books for Modellers Options
Plymouth57
#1 Posted : 12 August 2013 21:08:31

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Hi All.

This is a little idea mainly for the newcomers to our hobby who may be unsure of where to get information or research to help them build their models. Most of us will probably have books such as the ones I'll be describing below but for those who haven't (yet), here's a brief description of two of the best ones that I was able to get for my own needs so if you haven't got them yourself, have a read here and this is what you get for your hard earned cash! BigGrin

Anatomy of the Ship: The 100 Gun Ship Victory by John McKay

Dimensions: 25cm wide by 25cm high
No. of Pages: 119
Photographs: 20 (all b/w)
No. of Drawings: 328 (329 including the fold out plan inside the dust cover)
Price: £25.00? (This is from my own copy which must be over ten years old by now according to Amazon new copies in the USA are $450.00!!! Even on the US Ebay second hand copies range from $50 starting bid up to $150 buy now! Sheesh!!

This was my first Victory book, bought soon after I began collecting the DelPrado weekly parts and it was becoming obvious that I was going to need something with a little more detail than the official building instructions. And yes, I’m being sarcastic!
The author John MCKay is a Canadian living near Vancouver on the Pacific coast of Canada, and this book stemmed from his desire (one we all share) to build as accurate a model of the HMS Victory as he possibly could. Before his eventual book was first printed in 1987 there were very few publicly available plans of the Victory and this book was John’s attempt to produce his own.
What he produced has become over time the ‘Bible’ of the Victory model ship builder and for all round data and information it still can’t be beaten. Only one other book comes close to equalling this one that I have personal experience of, and that will be the subject of my next attempt at a ‘modellers’ review.
John spent the next five years and three thousand hours of research to come up with this huge data base of Victory facts and figures, the great majority of which is extremely useful to us modellers. After the success of this book, John McKay went on to write two more volumes in the Anatomy series, the Frigate Pandora and the object of her epic search, the Armed Transport Bounty

The basic layout of the book is as follows:

Pages 6-7 Introduction: A brief history of the First Rates of the Royal Navy (mentions the SOTS too!) with a quick history of Victory’s namesake predecessors and a data list of all the British First Rates from 1637 to 1841 (SOTS to Trafalgar) Although only one page long, this little history is full of interesting facts: the SOTS was the very first 100 gunner and was the direct ancestor of the later First Rates including Victory. The First Rates cost the same proportionally as a WW2 battleship and were so expensive to build, maintain and crew that very few of them were ever built, of a combined fleet total of 150 ships of war only 4 or five were ever First Rates! The first Victory was an Elizabethan Galleon of 34 guns and was the flagship of Sir John Hawkins at the defeat of the Spanish Armada (how about that one to go alongside the San Fran II?) Victory number two was built to carry 42 guns by Phineas Pett in 1620, she was later rebuilt to carry 80 guns (that’s a hell of a rebuild!) and was scrapped in 1691. Number three was originally the Royal James, built in 1675. She was rebuilt in 1695, adding an extra 64 tons but retaining her 100 guns as before. The fourth Victory was the most tragic, built in 1737 she carried 100 guns with a crew of 900. In October 1744, she was lost in a gale with every one of her crew, a disaster so great that the Admiralty deleted the name Victory from the list of permissible ship’s names.
Pages 8-19 Complete history of the HMS Victory, construction, refits, battles, weaponry etc. etc. This section is a veritable gold mine of useful information, not only does it go into considerable detail about how the last Victory was built, with actual timelines of which bits came first etc. but also explains some of the ‘why things were built this way’ as well. Separate sub sections include details on Repairs and refits, the ship’s decoration, how the steering gear worked, her pumps and boats, the new invention of copper sheathing, the crew accommodation, standing and running rigging, sails and Victory’s ordnance (shooty things)
Pages 20-33 The photographs, including some very nice interiors and close ups plus some restoration in progress pictures. Interesting ones include a (too small) painting of the first version of the ship with her open galleried stern (as modelled by Bernd), as she was in 1900 with that horrible rounded bow and black and white striped hull, a nice close up of the bow and figurehead on page 22, little seen shots of the main hold under repair and the capstans and bitts on the lower deck. The modern replica of the 68 pounder carronade is also useful, if only they had rigged it up with it’s tackle! (mind you, the deadeyes and shrouds behind it are really useful!)
Pages 34-69 The main construction drawings showing just about every beam, plank and frame in the old girl, plan and elevation views (from above and the side views) and isometric full hulls (3d type line drawings) The plans and elevations are to 1/192 scale, the isometrics are to no scale. These are incredibly clear line drawings by Mr McKay himself, very useful indeed, the only thing that lets them down from my own building needs is that they are all of the Victory as she is today at Portsmouth and not, as she was at Trafalgar. The differences only amount to about 10% of these drawings however and the Jotika website photos provide those different details anyway. The large side views and plans are especially useful in measuring out exactly where the various fittings should go
Pages 70-83 Internal Arrangements: These are essentially ‘slices’ through the whole ship at specified points, again to 1/192 scale, four slices to a page with a double page spread for the points which include the full mast and yards. For anyone building the cross section, these drawings are especially useful
Pages 84-94 External Details and Fittings. This includes the bow bulkhead and decoration, chain plates and davits, the entire entry port and steps arrangement (very useful that one!) and the mast/deck arrangements, belfry, stairways, barricades, capstans, anchors, wheel and rudder system and the lanterns. (Be careful when using these plans – they are drawn in lots of different scales, – ever wondered why a 1/48 ship’s wheel won’t fit under a 1/100 poop deck!) All joking aside, I found this section extremely handy and most of the scratch built decoration and the entry steps were measured up and created using these drawings. When I get on to making the chains and channels, they will come into their own again.
Pages 95-97 Ship’s Launches and Armament. The drawings of the ship’s boats are frankly a little on the small side although they do include the rib shapes at various points along the hull and if the drawings were either scanned or photocopied and enlarged they could be quite useful. The Armament double page is really good with both plan and elevations and also ‘sliced down the middle’ drawings showing just how those murderous things worked!
Pages 98-105 Masts and Yards. Very good drawings, I used these to make up my bowsprit, be warned however, you will need a magnifying glass to read off the measurements, unless like me, you are simply measuring the drawings themselves, converting that into full size and then dividing back to the scale you are building in!
Pages 106-113 Rigging. This is a very useful section which, in theory, shows what goes where. The only draw back to this part of the book is the scale of the drawings themselves, most of them are of whole ship views at 1/384 scale. For example, on pages 112-113 the belaying plan (probably the most useful of all the rigging diagrams shows the entire Victory in plan view and measures 25cm from tip of flying jib boom to the tip of the mizzen boom. 25 inches (or feet) would have been easier to follow for those of us who haven’t a clue where that flaming rigging thread from ‘up top’ is supposed to go!
Pages 114-115 Rigging (again) This though is a collection of scale drawings of all the various blocks, hearts and deadeyes etc. There’s a lot more to these things than a machine carved piece of wood I can tell you!
Pages 116-119 This is the last section, again entitled Rigging and is a table detailing every rope, cord and cable used on the ship, the name of the rope, it’s diameter, how many used and what size blocks and hearts it was attached to. If you need (or want) to know which are the halyards, sheets, lifts, horses, downhaulers, buntlines, strappings, jacks and many more besides, this is the section for you. (Personally its all ruddy thread to me!).
Blushing Something I have only just realised now is that each of those rigging ropes in the table is numbered from 1-258, and lo and behold, those numbers refer to all the other rigging drawings and diagrams! So all you have to do to identify what a rope is, is to find it’s number beside it on the plan and then check that number in the table. Simples, and I wish I’d known that a long time ago!Blushing

So that’s The 100 Gun Ship Victory by David McKay. If you can only afford one reference book, this is probably the one to go for. As I said it was first published in 1987 and even my own well thumbed copy is a ‘revised edition’, chances are it’s been updated again since my edition which came out, I’ve just discovered, in 2000. Apart from the limitation on the size of some of the drawings this book will provide a wealth of information for any modeller. As for the 1/192 fold out plan inside the dust cover, just don’t spill a cup of tea over the book, mine is firmly glued forever to the book cover! Dammit! Cursing

My next attempt will be HMS Victory, Her Construction, Career and Restoration by Alan McGowan

Bye till then.

Robin
Plymouth57 attached the following image(s):
Anatomy of the Ship Victory book.JPG
First wooden ship: The Grimsby 12 Gun 'Frigate' by Constructo Second: Bounty DelPrado Part Works Third: HMS Victory DelPrado Part Works 1/100 scale
Diorama of the Battle of the Brandywine from the American Revolutionary War Diorama of the Battle of New Falkland (unfinished sci-fi), Great War Centenary Diorama of the Messines Ridge Assault
Index for the Victory diary is on page 1
jase
#2 Posted : 13 August 2013 03:00:47

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This is a great idea. its always difficult to judge the use of books as research material until you use them. I have some books I may review swell. I am sure we could do this for other model topics too.
Plymouth57
#3 Posted : 18 August 2013 22:35:38

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Thanks for the positive comments boys. Here's my second bestist reference book for the Victory, hope you can find some useful bits here too! BigGrin

HMS Victory Her Construction, Career and Restoration by Alan McGowan
Dimensions: 25cm wide by 29cm high
No. of Pages: 222
Photographs: 66 (10 in full colour)
Plates: (Reproductions of paintings): 12 (all b/w)
Drawings: 300 (some pages contain one large drawing with many sub-parts, others contain many drawings each with a separate title, I’ve counted each titled drawing as a single, hence the large number)
Price: RRP £40.00 This may be out of date by now, my own edition is dated 2003. A quick search on the web gives a guide price for second hand copies from £35.00 and upwards. I should stay clear of Amazon’s ‘Buy it new’ for £545.00 though!

This was my second ‘big’ Victory book and came to me by an incredible stroke of luck! On a day trip to Paignton with Mum and my brother’s family I wandered into a little traditional bookshop down a small alley off the main street and to my great surprise found a single copy of this book on the top shelf of the ‘on sale’ section. I’d never even heard of this title before, my Victory was ‘In Reserve’ (up in the attic) at this time and I had a casual look through its pages. Within seconds I was hooked completely, doubly so when I looked at the sale price ticket – instead of the £40 recommended retail price, it was selling for £9.99!!! Needless to say, I went without my fish and chips that day!
The author, Alan McGowan couldn’t really have a better pedigree for writing this book, for over twenty years he was first the Head of the Department of Ships and later Chief Curator and Deputy Director of the National Maritime Museum. Alan then went on to become Chairman of the Victory Advisory Technical Committee, the very group responsible for returning Victory bit by bit to her Trafalgar state. You will recognise many of the drawings in this magnificent book, the plans, 3D isometrics and cutaways were drawn by McGowan’s collaborator for this book; the one and only David McKay!

Right then, with the background behind this major work established, this is how the contents appear:

Foreword: By Admiral Sir Michael Boyce KCB, OBE, ADC Chief of Naval Staff and First Sea Lord

Pages 1-2: Introduction
Pages 3-9: The Royal Naval in the Eighteenth Century.
Pages 10-21: Building HMS Victory and Her Maintenance 1758-1805
Pages 22-32: Trafalgar to a Permanent Dry Dock 1805-1922
Pages 33-43: Restoration and Repair 1922-1964
Pages 44-73: Completing the Great Repair 1964-2000
Pages 74-77: The Way Ahead

Aspects of Restoration
Pages 79-80: Boats
Pages 81-84: Masts and Spars
Pages 85-86: Sails
Pages 87-89: Rigging from 1965
Pages 90-91: Anchors and Ground Tackle
Page 92: Materials and Techniques
Page 93: Rase Marks
Page 94: Fastenings
Pages 95-96: Caulking and Drainage, Surveys
Page 97: Improved Dockyard Equipment
Pages 98-99: Painting and Preservation
Pages 100-102: Damage by Death Watch Beetle
Pages 103-109: Progress Report Sept 1991-Feb 1992
Pages 110-121: Annexes (Including various drawings of the hull timbers)
Pages 122-124: The Victory Advisory Technical Committee
Pages 125-215: The Drawings. Subdivided as follows:
Pages 126-130: The body lines (If you’re scratch building the entire Victory this is for you!) Blink
Pages 131-135: Basic Frame components (including a very nice line drawing of the stern from lanterns to keel)
Pages 136-137: The entire hull, plank for plank
Pages 138-139: Plank expansion plan. This is the entire starboard side of the hull but distorted (as in the Mercator projection on world maps) This plan flattens out the hull curves to ensure that no planks are fitted with their butts (narrow ends) adjoining each other on adjacent strakes.
Pages 140-141: Expansion plan of the Copper Sheathing (very useful if you are going for the dead accurate copper plating effect)
Pages 142-143: Inboard. This is a brilliant 3D section right down the centre line of the whole ship and is especially good at showing how all the steps and stairways connect up with each other and also where the masts disappear to when they go beneath the decks!
Pages 144-145: Inboard again. This time an elevation view through the centre line.
Pages 146-147: An overview of the individual decks in 3D, this is a compilation of the larger individual drawings which follow.
Pages 148-153: Individual decks in 3D cutaway views. (Incredibly useful drawings for super-detail fans like me!)
Pages 154-155: Plan View of full decks.
Pages 156-157: The Fore and Aft Sails. For those adding the full suit of sails to their model, the Fore and Aft are the first ones to be rigged up so this diagram is very handy.
Pages 158-159: Square Sails, shown in profile (swung around to starboard)
Pages 160-161: Square sails, shown from front view.
Pages 162-166: The Bowsprit. Full construction and rigging details.
Pages 167-169: Head Sails and more Bowsprit rigging.
Pages 170-175: Foremast Sails and Rigging. Includes all the shrouds and their order of attachment to the mast and deadeyes.
Pages 176-184: The Mainmast. Full construction, rigging and sails.
Pages 185-189: The Mizzenmast. As for the Mainmast.
Page 190: Studding Sail Rigging. (For those going the whole hog!)
Page 191: The Fore Tops: Details of the fighting tops and cross trees.
Pages 192-193: Blocks. Exploded diagrams of all the rigging blocks and hearts.
Pages 194-197: The Anchors. Showing the methods of handling, stowing and weighing the anchors.
Pages 198-199: Main Jeer Capstan. Plans and exploded diagrams of the ‘winches’ used to raise the anchors.
Pages 200-203: The 32lb Guns. Construction and full rigging tackle.
Pages 204-205: The 68lb Carronade. As for the cannon.
Pages 206-207: The Chain Pumps.
Pages 208-209: The Brodie Stove.
Pages 210-211: The Mess Decks. Plans of the Lower and Middle Decks giving the positions of the tables, benches and hammocks.
Page 212: Steering Details. Binnacle, Ship’s Wheel and rope work to the rudder.
Page 213: The Figurehead. Includes a nice drawing of the bow timbers.
Pages 214-215: Ship’s Boats. Lovely 3D drawings! Curiously, there are no actual scale plans of the ship's boats, but using these drawings with the plans from the McKay book gives you the full picture (pun NOT intended!)
Pages 217-219: Glossary.
Page 220: List of Sources.
Pages 221-222: Index

From the list above, you can see that there is a hell of a lot of information contained in this large and heavy volume and even at the full RRP it is still a good value source of that information. Some of the info contained in these pages is very technical in nature and not that much of interest to modellers but as a complete history of the Victory, not only the more widely known facts but the ‘what’s been done to protect her for the future’ bits as well, this book can’t be beaten! The plans and drawings in this book, even those also found in the McKay book, are larger and clearer than in that book. There is really only one drawback to this very useful source, and that is that the plans and drawings are not marked with their scales! Instead of the stated scale as in the earlier book, each drawing and plan comes with a ruler of measurement in the corner. This does unfortunately make scaling the drawings up a little harder than the McKay method. Where a scale is given, one only has to measure a dimension on the drawing, multiply it by the scale and then divide that by the scale you are working in (in my case 1/100) to get the correct dimension for the model part. In this book however you have to measure the piece you are building, place that measurement alongside the scale ruler to determine it’s actual size and then convert that to the scale size. This brings in an extra chance to create an error in the dimensions, when checking against the ruler. One man’s 2ft could be another’s 2ft 1ins! Apart from this one little niggle however, this book is very positively recommended to all modellers of the Victory – if you can still find it!
To be honest, for a complete (or virtually complete) Victory 'manual' these two books should be read as a double act, each one complements the other beautifully and the weak points of one are covered more than adequately by it's companion.


Happy Reading

Robin

(I'll come back tomorrow and put the rest of the page numbers etc in bold - got to take the dog out right now!!Cursing )
Done that now! BigGrin
Plymouth57 attached the following image(s):
McGowan Victory pic.JPG
First wooden ship: The Grimsby 12 Gun 'Frigate' by Constructo Second: Bounty DelPrado Part Works Third: HMS Victory DelPrado Part Works 1/100 scale
Diorama of the Battle of the Brandywine from the American Revolutionary War Diorama of the Battle of New Falkland (unfinished sci-fi), Great War Centenary Diorama of the Messines Ridge Assault
Index for the Victory diary is on page 1
Marcel
#4 Posted : 24 August 2013 17:48:42

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Thanks Plymouth57 for this topic. Its a great help for me as a novice to model ships. I was in search for books that cover these topics. This give me new insight in my search for hobby books.

The nautical terms is not a language I'll be mastering soon. My browser is filled with bookmarks that refers to terms used in the builds.Blushing
I am a petrol head or a fish on dry land.

I love to read about ancient lifestyles. Without computers, those peasants were a lot smarter than us, I think.

Regards, Marcel
"Rather try and fail than had failed to try".


Sovereign of the Seas

Model Space forum: Marcel's build
Plymouth57
#5 Posted : 24 August 2013 19:22:11

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Hi Marcel

Many thanks for your kind comments and I'm glad you are finding this topic helpful.
I know what you mean about the nautical terms, some instructions seem to think we bought their kits whilst on shore leave from a tall ship voyage!

If you check out my other topic thread on Nelson Speak, I'm adding as many nautical names as I come across in the definitions so you might find some useful references there too.

Robin
First wooden ship: The Grimsby 12 Gun 'Frigate' by Constructo Second: Bounty DelPrado Part Works Third: HMS Victory DelPrado Part Works 1/100 scale
Diorama of the Battle of the Brandywine from the American Revolutionary War Diorama of the Battle of New Falkland (unfinished sci-fi), Great War Centenary Diorama of the Messines Ridge Assault
Index for the Victory diary is on page 1
Plymouth57
#6 Posted : 15 September 2013 18:15:36

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Sorry for the delay, here's the next 'must have'! BigGrin

The Period Ship HANDBOOK by Keith Julier
Dimensions: 11 ¾ x 8 ¼ inches
No. of Pages: 205
Photographs: 175 (of which 11 are colour)
Drawings: 133+ (Many of the drawings are repeated for the various ship builds and many drawings counted as one are made up of multiple parts)
Price: I'll have to check on this!
ISBN: 1-85486-081-X

Welcome to my very first ship modeller’s reference book! This is the one I bought to help me with my first wooden ship, the Constructo “Grimsby”. This book follows a completely different outlook to my other two books reviewed previously, they were reference volumes devoted to a single ship providing facts and figures which modellers could use to their best advantage. This book however deals not with a single actual vessel, but with a selection of model kits of various period ships and how to make the most of them. This book was written by a master modeller for modellers!
The Period Ship Handbook is divided into a series of fifteen chapters beginning with three chapters for complete beginners (as I was at that time) followed by eleven further chapters, each one detailing the construction of a commercially available wooden ship kit with a final chapter summarising all the techniques, tips and procedures used throughout the builds.
The contents of the book are as follows:

Page 5: List of Contents
Page 6: List of Colour Plates
Page 7: Introduction
Pages 9-11: Chapter 1: The Tool Box. A (very) brief description of the most basic of tools required for this fantastic hobby; Knives, planes, drills, abrasives, adhesives, paints and varnishes are all described with a couple of surprising ones as well (anyone used Dulux Colour Testers for below the waterline?).
Pages 13-14: Chapter 2: Choosing the Kit. The obvious basics about choosing kits from reputable manufacturers and reading up the reviews in Model Boats magazine and others to gain an insight into what you are getting for your money, difficulty and quality etc.
Page 15: Chapter 3: Making a Start: This is a warning chapter to look before you leap! Reading the instructions fully and thoroughly (sometimes easier said than done with some manufacturers!) and where those instructions are detailed and exact, the dangers of deviating from them (such as running out of materials if they are not cut up in the correct order given by those instructions!) Basically, using common sense!
Pages 17-87 The First Rate “Royal William” 1719 by Euro Model Como (I’m not sure whether this company is still going or not). This is one BIG ship! 45 inches long and “if you have back trouble, requires help when lifting the box”, primarily due to the large number of die-cast metal ornamentation. This is a really beautiful ship, and just as the SOTS marks the evolution of the Elizabethan Galleon into the First Rate, the Royal William is the very next step in that process. She is basically the SOTS without the side stern galleries and with a bow design approaching that of the Victory. Her rigging is far closer to the SOTS however and for that reason alone this chapter would be very useful indeed to anyone building the SOTS. This is a very detailed kit and definitely not one for complete beginners. Building a spiral staircase out of a square block of wood is not for the faint hearted! My Grimsby has two small spiral staircases and they were made up from many small bits, that was difficult enough!) Even the ship’s stove (the fore-runner of the Victory’s Brodie) has to be made up from scratch, I’ll stick with just the chimney on my Vic thanks very much! This chapter introduces many of the little hints and tips with their accompanying drawings which are repeated throughout the book where they apply to the other kits as well.
Pages 89-94: Chapter 5: The Thames Barge “Will Everard”. As you can tell by the number of pages in this chapter, this is a much smaller, far simpler kit which is perfectly suited to beginners. This vessel is built up using the unique Billings method of constructing two halves of the hull on a flat board which are then joined together once completed. This kit makes up into a nice little model and Keith Julier gives it a good review but also warns that you’ll need access to a suitable sewing machine and preferably someone who knows how to use it to get good results on the sails!
Pages 95-100: Chapter 6: The Faroes Yawl F.D.10. This is the second ‘beginners’ kit, once again by Billings and again, employing their two-half-hull method. The Yawl is a smallish fishing boat of about 1930, similar in many respects to the Luggers of my own Westcountry fishermen in days (mostly) gone by, although there are still a few of them about! Two masted with fore and aft sails, the kit builds up into a very nice 1/50 model, 685mm in length. In actual fact these boats were not actually Faroes but English! The fishermen of England were at this time switching over to trawlers and they sold as many of the older Yawls as they could to the Faroes, Icelandic and Norwegian fishermen who regarded them as very sturdy and seaworthy vessels. CMB still has this kit with a very good photo of it on their site.
Pages 101-107: Chapter 7: The American Raider “Hannah” by Artesania Latina. This was the first vessel to be commissioned by Washington’s Continental Army in 1775. Originally a fishing schooner she was converted to carry guns and used to steal stores and supplies from unarmed British merchantmen (so nothing’s changed in 250 years then!).BigGrin This is an intermediate kit for although it seems a relatively simple build at first glance it “turned out to be quite an absorbing project” (Keith Julier). This is a more conventional build with a false keel and frames assembly and double planking on the hull. The Hannah carries four cannon backed up with six swivel guns aft and another four at the bows, not much it would seem, but a whole lot more than an unarmed merchant had to defend itself with! Keith J. gives the kit a good review and a good choice for adding extra details to after a little research, “good value for money”.
Pages 109-119: Chapter 8: The French Goelette “La Toulonnaise” by Artesania Latina. For those like me who have never heard of a ‘Goelette’, it is a post Napoleonic sixth rate? Warship built in 1823 and armed with eight 18lb carronades and saw extensive service in the Franco-Spanish War. Her type was named after the smallest member of a family of marine birds found in lower Brittany. The kit builds up into a nice looking very streamlined two masted ship which, in her bare wood finish has a lovely cream coloured upper hull and dark wood lower, the foremast is square rigged whilst the rear is fore and aft like a schooner. Quite a bit of rigging on this one though nowhere near that of the Victory or Royal William. Again Keith regards this kit as “not really a first time model” but “the less experienced modeller could still anticipate a creditable result”.
Pages 121-134: Chapter 9: The Brandenburg Frigate “Berlin” 1674 by Corel. Definitely not a beginner’s kit, although apparently the instructions indicate that Corel thought it would be! At 830mm long, think of something resembling Drake’s Golden Hind with a crew speaking in German accents with a Captain speaking Dutch! This 20-ish gun warship has three masts, four deck levels (foc’sl, waist, and split level poop) and the same really intricate rigging as the SOTS of which she was a near contemporary. K.J. regards her as very good value for money and very good quality overall but “probably not the wisest choice for the absolute first timer”. A nice looking ship though.
Pages 135-144: Chapter 10: The Spanish Man-of-War “San Juan Nepomuceno” by Artesania Latina. This is a proud Spanish ’74 which fought with distinction against Nelson at Trafalgar only striking her colours under greatly superior fire from the British fleet and after 400 of her crew of 500 were dead or wounded. Her Commander, Brigadier Don Cosme Damien Churruca still continued to lead what was left of her crew even after he lost a leg earlier in the battle. A real pity she, and he, were fighting for the ‘wrong’ side!
This model is 910mm in length with some really sturdy looking frames and re-enforcing struts especially at the bows. The kit builds up into a very nice model with a typically Spanish open gallery at the stern although the stern and quarter gallery windows appear to be solid metal castings so a lot of extra work would be required to ‘light her up’ or even just to get a real glass effect in those areas. Overall, the kit materials are of good quality with excellent instructions including many photos and the plan drawings are exceptionally well draughted. “A most satisfying model” The only drawback seems to be that no base is provided at all, either to build her on, or to display the finished model. Judging from his remarks, I’d say this kit is intermediate in difficulty.
Pages 145-152: Chapter 11: The American “USS Constellation by Artesania Latina. When it comes to kit instructions, this one appears to be one of the best. Three double-sided sheets of plans alongside two ‘extremely well-printed instruction manuals in four languages employing a graphic symbol system which informs what the piece is and whether it has to be scratch built from the materials supplied or comes as a ready made accessory. The instructions also advise what tools to use for each part and the correct type of glues to employ. Of most use to novice builders is a set of 123 stage-by-stage photos, each cross referenced back to the instruction manuals and parts list. If only all kits were like this! This builds into a big model at 1010mm long! Despite the very detailed instructions, Keith did find that the cutting and lining of the gun ports (which does not crop up until stage 52) would have been easier to do at an earlier stage. The hull is double planked and the curves for the most part are gentle enough that the planks only needed soaking, no steaming was required. Although he doesn’t consider the Constellation to be a complete beginner’s kit, he does regard it as excellent value for money and a very impressive model requiring just “a little experience”.
Much was made at the time about the lack of success of the Royal Navy in fighting against the new Continental Navy of the Americans. Many British frigates were captured after prolonged engagements and this was put down to the American spirit and British inferiority. Nobody bothered to point out however that the Constellation, Constitution and their sisters were an entirely new breed of ship; the 'Super Frigate', half as big again as the previous British ships with twice the crew and almost twice the firepower! The first real match between a British and 'Yankee' warship of equal size was the battle between the USS Chesapeake and HMS Shannon. Guess who won that one! Flapper
Pages 153-162: Chapter 12: The American Whaling Ship ‘Charles W. Morgan’ by Artesania Latina. The Charles W. Morgan is in the same class as Nelson’s Victory and the Cutty Sark, she is the sole survivor of her type and is also preserved as a national monument. Think of Moby Dick’s ‘Pequod’ and this is what you’ve got, a New Bedford or Nantucket Whaling ship built and launched in July 1841, named after her principal owner Charles Waln Morgan, a Quaker businessman, the CWM cost over $50,000 to build and the profit of her first voyage far exceeded that cost. The ship worked on thirty seven voyages from 1841 to 1921, some of them lasting over four years at sea. She even defied the normal jinxes of the day by taking on the Captain’s wife as the assistant navigator. Finally, one George Parkin Christian was the Second Mate of the CWM, a trustworthy position considering his family’s past – he was the great-grandson of Fletcher Christian who led the mutiny on the Bounty!
This is one of Artesania’s older kits but is still a highly detailed one for all that. The six sheets of plans are based on the Mystic Seaport Museum’s research (the equivalent of the Victory’s Preservation Trust). The wood and materials supplied were all of high quality BUT although plenty of spare planking was supplied, only the required numbers of blocks and deadeyes were included leaving no room for error! The only downer was that the rigging thread, although top quality was all ‘very white’ and needed dying before it could be used. The hull construction is “extremely simple and straightforward” but care was needed to ensure that all frames were at right angles to the false keel, the joints were a bit sloppy in K.J.’s kit and he gives some good advice for the fitting of the false and main decks specific to this model as too are the planking instructions. One very nice part of this kit review was the creation of the stand for the finished model. As with many of the Artesania kits, no stand at all is provided in the kit and Mr Julier came up with a brilliantly simple (and relatively cheap) stand involving a hardwood block and a wooden drawer handle from his local DIY store (it’s on page 158) from the photos of the completed model it really sets the ship off well.
Again this is not a complete beginner’s kit but ‘any reasonable craftsman should, with care and patience, produce a model of considerable interest’ and ‘It is a long time since I have had so much pleasure from a model boat project’. You can’t get a better recommendation than that!
Pages 163-168: Chapter 14: A New Bedford Whaleboat by Amati.
This little kit would make a great companion to the last kit, it is in fact one of the Charles W. Morgan’s own Whaleboats (or Moby Dick’s toothpick if you’ve ever seen the film!).LOL This is a very detailed model complete with all the paraphernalia seen in the film; harpoons of various sizes, water keg and ladle for pouring over the harpoon rope to prevent friction combustion, short half barrels of coiled rope and two different types of oars. Unlike the DeAgostini ship's launches which were built onto a temporary base, this kit is built around a false keel right down the length of the boat which is removed after the clinker planking is complete. This kit is capable of being built into an exhibition standard according to Keith Julier but some experience would be very helpful in getting there. (I think this one would be just the job for Stevie-O, a full crew with Ahab and a huge great model Whale, well at least just the head and mouth anyway!BigGrin
Pages 177-199: Chapter 15: A Summary of Techniques
This is the absolute goldmine part of the book. As the title suggests, it is basically a repeat of all the tips and advice, together with all the dozens of diagrams which have already appeared throughout the other chapters, but all collected in one section, from hull and deck planking, tapering masts and spars, footropes, blocks and tackle, sequence of rigging the masts, lanyards and belaying pin rack coils (I found this one especially useful on the Grimsby), adhesives, deck fittings (including scratch building pumps etc) , model stands, kit enhancements and finally cannon rigging; it’s all here and easy to take in, even now I am still learning a lot from this list!
Page 210: Conclusion.
Pages 203-205 Index.All in all I couldn’t recommend this book too highly, it’s taught me a hell of a lot (and even reminded me of some things as I’ve been going back over it for this review! This was the first of Keith Julier’s model ship series, I’ve also got his second book; “The Period Ship Kit Builder’s Manual” which, although it contains much already mentioned here, is actually in a completely different format so that will be the next subject from me.

As I’ve said, this thread is for everyone to share so if you have your own favourite ship modelling books please post your reviews whenever you can, the more the merrier!

Robin


Plymouth57 attached the following image(s):
The Period Ship Handbook by Keith Julier pic.JPG
First wooden ship: The Grimsby 12 Gun 'Frigate' by Constructo Second: Bounty DelPrado Part Works Third: HMS Victory DelPrado Part Works 1/100 scale
Diorama of the Battle of the Brandywine from the American Revolutionary War Diorama of the Battle of New Falkland (unfinished sci-fi), Great War Centenary Diorama of the Messines Ridge Assault
Index for the Victory diary is on page 1
Tomick
#7 Posted : 18 February 2014 15:18:04
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Ship Modellers Shop Notes.

A publication of the Nautical Research Guild.

This popular and insightful book discusses the construction of ship models in numerous articles written by marine historians and ship model builders.
Edited by Merit Edson and assisted by Ben Lankford, Edward Mueller and Norman Rubin, it is a compilation of shop notes and articles from out-of-print material from Nautical Research Journals.
This book has been a standard for ship model building, and is highly acclaimed by professionals and beginners alike and with material that has not gone out of date.
There are nearly 170 articles, 9 plans of hull lines and many drawings contained in 216 pages.
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IMG_5175.JPG
Tomick
#8 Posted : 18 February 2014 15:32:53
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Rigging Period Ship Models

Chatham Publishing

A step-by-step guide to the intracies of Square-Rig.

The rigging of period ship models is arguably the most complex task which any modeller has to take on. The very scale of the work can be daunting, but this remarkable book of drawings, however, makes the modeller's job logical and straight forward.

The author has drawn over two-hundred detailed diagrams which show clearly how each separate item of both standing and running rigging is fitted to the masts, yards and sails; belaying plans are included and knots and fastenings are also depicted. Based on the frigate Melampus, this rigging plan is the most detailed available in any publication. Whether a modelmaker needs to rig a whole ship or just requires information on one aspect, it is all here.
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Tomick
#9 Posted : 19 February 2014 09:36:59
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HMS Victory First-Rate 1765

by Iain Ballantyne & Jonathan Eastland

Seaforth Publishing

Written by experts and containing more than 200 specially commissioned photographs, each title will take the reader on a superbly illustrated tour of the ship, from bow to stern and deck by deck. Significant parts of the vessel – for example, the capstan, steering gear, armament, brody stove, cockpit, stern cabins – are given detailed coverage both in words and pictures, so that the reader has at hand the most complete visual record and explanation of the ship that exists.

In addition, the importance of the ship, both in her own time and now as a museum vessel, is explained, while her design and build, her fighting career and her life prior to restoration and exhibition are all described.
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IMG_5178.JPG
Tomick
#10 Posted : 19 February 2014 09:43:29
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Sovereign of the Seas - The Seventeenth-Century Warship

James Sephton. 256 pages.

Amberley Publishing

The author, James H. Sephton, has been engrossed for many years in the self appointed task of researching and compiling a definitive history.

This present study contains unpublished material, showing original paintings, drawings and models. Her size in term of tonnage, a description of her decorative carvings and rigging is described, as is her history in the various actions during the Dutch Wars. There are accompanying plates, drawings, maps, lists and tables.

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Tomick
#11 Posted : 19 February 2014 09:49:15
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The Trafalgar Companion

By Mark Adkin. 560 pages

Aurum Press

The Trafalgar Companion, details the battle fought between the British Navy and the French and Spanish combined fleet in October 1805, and has been universally acclaimed as the definitive work on the subject, distinguished by its superb illustrations, articulacy and attention to detail.
The book surpasses everything previously published on the battle in both scale and authority. Former army officer Mark Adkin not only describes the Trafalgar campaign and the battle itself in unprecedented detail, he also covers Nelson's career and earlier actions. Also included is the wealth of background information on contemporary naval life, seamanship, gunnery, signalling and tactics that one has come to expect from this distinguished author. Divided into twenty chapters across nine sections, The Trafalgar Companion can be dipped into as a reference guide or read cover to cover. Detailing everything from the sailors, officers and tactics to the ships themselves, each section is placed in the context of the battle and enhanced by maps, plans, drawings and diagrams. The book also covers Nelson's boyhood and early years in the Navy, his affair with Emma Hamilton, and the six other main actions in which he took part, from the siege of Calvi in 1794 to the Battles of the Nile and Copenhagen, as well as his funeral, memorials and enduring fame.
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Tomick
#12 Posted : 19 February 2014 09:54:15
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Russian Warships in the Age of Sail 1696-1860 - Design, construction and fates.

By John Tredrea & Eduard Sozaev. 447 pages.

Peter the Great created a navy from nothing, but it challenged and soon surpassed Sweden as the Baltic naval power, while in the Black Sea it became an essential tool in driving back the Ottoman Turks from the heartland of Europe. In battle it was surprisingly successful, and at times in the eighteenth century was the third largest navy in the world - yet its history, and especially its ships, are virtually unrecorded in the West.

This major reference work handsomely fills this gap, with a complete and comprehensive list of the fleet, with technical detail and career highlights for every ship, down to small craft. However, because the subject is so little recorded in English, the book also provides substantial background material on the organisation and administration of the navy, its weapons, personnel and shipbuilding facilities, as well as an outline of Russia s naval campaigns down to the clash with Britain and France known as the Crimean War. Illustrated with plans, paintings and prints rarely seen outside Russia, it is authoritative, reliable and comprehensive, the culmination of a long collaboration between a Russian naval historian and an American ship enthusiast.
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jase
#13 Posted : 19 February 2014 12:37:47

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Tomick wrote:
Ship Modellers Shop Notes.

A publication of the Nautical Research Guild.

This popular and insightful book discusses the construction of ship models in numerous articles written by marine historians and ship model builders.
Edited by Merit Edson and assisted by Ben Lankford, Edward Mueller and Norman Rubin, it is a compilation of shop notes and articles from out-of-print material from Nautical Research Journals.
This book has been a standard for ship model building, and is highly acclaimed by professionals and beginners alike and with material that has not gone out of date.
There are nearly 170 articles, 9 plans of hull lines and many drawings contained in 216 pages.




Interestingly there is now a follow up of the same book currently in print. The same format but diferent articles and may be a lot chaeper than trying to find a second hand origonal. Also if you can find a spirol bound copy it is much easer to use on the work bench.

http://www.modelexpo-onl...roduct.asp?ITEMNO=NRG101
Tomick
#14 Posted : 20 February 2014 12:14:11
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The Battlecruiser H.M.S. Hood: An Illustrated Biography

Author: Bruce Taylor
Publishe: Naval Institute Press/Chatham/Seaforth Publications

Impeccably researched and executed, it features a details visual and textual examination of the ship from conception to destruction. It also tells the story of the crew with unique insights as to what life was really like aboard the ship. It features a large amount of images to include stills from a rare 1939/1940 colour film. It also contains incredibly detailed computer renderings by remarkable graphic artist Thomas Schmid.
This book is an absolute must for anyone seriously interested in Hood and is regarded as being the best.
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#15 Posted : 20 February 2014 20:42:18

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I-400: Japan's Secret Aircraft-Carrying Strike Submarine

BigGrin Hi All
I used this as a reference to my recent build of the model. Its the most up to date book on the market with interviews of airmen and crew a very interesting read
regards
AndyCool
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#16 Posted : 20 February 2014 20:44:24

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Battleship Yamato

BigGrin Hi All
Another must, sadly out of print but second hand copys are available
With the greatest displacement, biggest guns and heaviest armour, "Yamato" and her sister "Musashi" were the ultimate battleships. Everything about them was gigantic - each main armament turret, for example, had a total revolving weight of over 2500 tones - and they proved formidable opponents to the US Pacific Fleet. The author has assembled a portfolio of drawings, and the photographic section includes some very rare on-board views
regards
AndyCool
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Tomick
#17 Posted : 24 February 2014 08:27:40
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Haynes HMS Victory
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#18 Posted : 19 March 2014 22:04:26

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Historic Ship models by Wolfram Zu Mondfeild ISBN 0 85242 828 6

Written by an expert ship modeller for other builders and thouse wishing to enter the hobby. The Book is also a survey of ship development, charting changes in rigging and building approaches in historic ships.


arpurchase
#19 Posted : 27 April 2014 12:13:18

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BigGrin Just got this off Amazon for £1.60Cool
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#20 Posted : 27 April 2014 12:48:52

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Bonzer buy
H.M.S Victory
H.M.S Victory X Section
H.M.S Surprise under the bench
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