Sunday, 8 May 2011

At long last - 50 Not Out!


Pictured above are the final two models for the river phase of my ACW naval project. They are a pair of stern wheelers for the Union Ellet Ram Fleet and are model numbers 49 and 50. The hulls and fittings were very straightforward and the only challenge was the stern wheel itself - both the actual wheel and the brackets for mounting it. I opted to use the 1cm grooved dowel pins (see the picture above) and a single pin is enough for three models - considering I have used one from a bag of a hundred it means that I can quite easily make a whole lot more of this type of ship should I so wish (I will need to make few more in due course). The mounting bracket was fashioned not from plastic rod but from my supply of Mega Blocks plastic bricks. When cut up you can get a very nice right angle which saves a lot of bother. The wheels are not fixed to the models as these will be glued to the plastic base when they are painted.

It has taken me the best part of six months to build the collection and that includes refurbishment on at least ten models. In terms of cost it has been relatively inexpensive - I reckon I have probably spent around £40 on materials and given that I have generous amount of kit left over that is not bad at all. Certainly my next building project(s) will have benefited from the knowledge and experience I have gained during the construction process. My Balkans 1900 idea will be the most obvious beneficiary as I intend building the ships for the naval side and given some of the assorted scrap iron on display making masts and spars is definitely a skill worth having! Joking aside though, I have had enormous fun making these models and it has been extremely therapeutic. Through the research I have undertaken I have greatly expanded my knowledge of the period and so hope to take this into the games I fight with the models once they are painted - which is of course the next phase.

I should also offer my thanks and appreciation to all that have been following my efforts with this - as ever your comments and encouragement have been invaluable and have certainly helped me over the rockier patches!

10 comments:

Man Cave said...

Well done matey - a stirling effort indeed

Peter Douglas said...

Well done indeed, congrats and get yourself a beer!

David Crook said...

Hi Tas,

Thankyou Sir! With this little lot I have not forgotten the small matter of VSF either....

Suffice it to say that there are plans afoot.

All the best,

DC

David Crook said...

Hi Peter,

Cheers old chap! Beers will be consumed in due course for sure - I will make sure they have some paint on first though!

That is the next phase and the models are ready for undercoating and break down nicely into four batches for painting.

Whilst the painting is underway I shall also be preparing the ship name labels for the bases, cutting the bases out and printing off the flags.

I am allowing until the end of next month to complete this which should be about enough time (I hope!).

In the meantime though I shall make sure the beers are chilling nicely!

All the best,

DC

El Grego said...

Well done - the stern wheel bit was a great piece of DIY!

SteelonSand said...

Well done! a fantastic achievement so far, and as you say, plenty of experience saved in the knowledge bank for future use - the dowel stern wheels are a brilliant solution - now get painting (cracks proverbial whip)!

David Crook said...

Hi EG,

Thanks old chap - much appreciated as ever.

Now that I have a bag of grooved dowel pins I also thought about some other uses - they make good engine pods for spaceships and you can saw them into solid wheels for use on scratchbuilt steampunk VSF vehicles! I would have preferred them to have been ever so slightly larger - say 12mm - but they look fine for the scale of model I shall be building.

All the best,

DC

David Crook said...

Hi SoS,

Thankyou sir! If I have gained anything from the last 6 months is that looking at everyday objects in a different light can be a rewarding experience!

Painting starts in earnest this weekend with a projected finish date of the end of June.

All the best,

DC

David Manley said...

Excellent stern wheels! s luck would have it we bought an extension kit for Philip's bunk bed and it came with a dozen spare dowels just like that, so I may well end up following your example and knock up a few stern wheelers myself.

David Crook said...

Hi DM,

Thanks old chap! I would have preferred the dowel to have a shade bigger - perhaps 12mm - but as long as the model proportions look right the 10mm versions are fine. Funnily enough it was an Ikea bed that gave me dowel idea in the first place! I plan to knock up stern wheel transports and tin clad gunboats in due course but have enough to be going on with at the moment - painting begins in earnest this weekend. I hope to be trying your MoW rules this Wednesday at the club - I have 'hexed' a version and am also looking using something similar for the Balkan project so many thanks once again.

All the best,

DC