"ship plans courtesy of the National Maritime Museum, London."
Now so far all the searches I had done for ship plans had taken me to model ship builder forums, Which are really useful... if your not making wargaming ships I needed a large selection of old drawings, sure plenty out there but not a nice selection in just one place... until I went to the Museums Internet site and then with a bit of knowledge gifted by Uncle Wiki I was set to build... and now you can too! P.S I am still building this ship and Paul so please hang tight as this is only the first part...
Preparation: get some plans...
|go online and look for some plans some are free but the best are not|
Also try Wikipedia for some basic ship Dimensions convert to the correct scale and then Round them UP to the nearest cm or if you use imperial... umm... not quite sure half inch? perhaps. Rounding up is better as ships in scale look smaller for some reason.
|some information from Uncle Wiki... I should have looked at the crew size and gone oh it is huge|
|This is some "Lines" of a Cruizer class brig sloop|
Now that you have your plans get some materials.... You will need! (for this stage)
- some french curves (well more useful than necessary)
- a pencil
- Foam board, polystyrene or other foam material
- Craft knife
- some thick card, foam-core or some hardboard or a material thinner than the foam
- A ruler
- cutting board
- PVA glue
- patience and lots of it :-(
it is important that you get the overall length of the ship and the width so that you can make a rectangle. Draw this rectangle onto your foam and then score the foam before cutting.
Do this process twice.
Now that you have your rectangles you need to cut them out. do this carefully as you will need to do more measurements later on. I recommend that you only cut one out for now.
Step 2: Getting the curves
Now ships are not giant rectangles so we need to put in the curves for the bow and stern to do this make a grid pattern on the face of the foam. I put "vertical" lines every 3 cm.
Now you must look back at the plans to see what the curve on the actual ship is like. Now go to your foam sketch an proximate curve onto it. in the image across I have drawn the sterns lines and also some lines to represent what the underside will look like.remember do to make these smaller than the plans so bow is thinner and sharper and stern is less rounded.
Now do some cutting this must be done slowly and precisely to minimise the risk of ending up with an odd looking ship later on.
Now do the same on the underside. for this go about 1 cm in from the edge at the side and around 2-3 on the bow and stern... referring to the plans help determine the angles.
now comes the blade destroying part. cut diagonally through the foam from the bottom to the top creating the angles. it helps to cut the lines on the bottom first to reduce the risk of snapping your craft knifes blade!
Step 3: the layers - poop deck and forecastle
Now that you've done the base of the sloop you need to do the top. re-do steps one and 2 but this time follow the plans more exactly so that the curves on the ship are more like those on the plans.
make sure that the bottom of this layer matches up with the top of the previous one so that they fit together. or else you will be in trouble.
Now cut out the centre of the second foam layer so that you have the ends. These are the forecastle and poop deck. glue these in place. unlike me I recommend that if you have a clamp to use it.
Step 4: the gun deck/ centre of the ship
get your other material, I use some really thick card. its really strong which might be useful later but even some foam core or hardboard will do.
measure up the gap between the forecastle and poop deck. Once again cut out a rectangle to fit in the gap. if there are some curves that need to be taken into account simply trim the rectangle to fit without overhanging the edges.
Then glue down the card, foam or whatever you are using if like me this layer is not thick enough add another until the gap between the layers seems more like that of the plans... so in this case not to big.
End of Part one
now step one is complete you should have the backbone of a ship onto which you can put your cardboard skin and planking. More importantly you will need to put the masts on.
Thats all in part 2 though so you need to wait. also I have not even got that far yet.
Now just a look at HMS Paul... progress has been slow because I have been focusing on building the larger ship so Paul will take a while but here is what she looks like so far... She, why are ships she? even when they have masculine names?
|the sides are added and just need trimming|
|nice and smooth... as you can see this ship is also made from cracker boxes|
|I think this fig is fed up with being used for all the naval posts :-P|