My Workbench

Saturday, March 11, 2017

1/1200 Scratch-built Massachusetts Privateer Rattlesnake

My next scratch build is the 20-gun 1781 Massachusetts privateer ship Rattlesnake. She was built in 1780 at Plymouth. She had no wales and the quarterdeck and forecastle were detached. Length 89'3"; Beam 22'4"; Depth of Hold 8'10-1/2"; Crew 86. Rattlesnake was commissioned in 1781 and was reputedly a very fast miniature frigate. She was captured by the British 44-gun frigate HMS Assurance, was bought by the Royal Navy at New York and commissioned as HM Sloop Cormorant with 18 guns and a crew of 125 men and boys.

A nice write-up with pictures and plans can be found at

My inspiration painting
The plans

The decks glued to balsa

Decks cut out, glued together, and sanded

Plan profiles cut out and glued to hull

Stern plan detail cut out and glued to card, then attached

Furniture and grating added

Prelim paint

Mounted to base and scratch masts added

Scratch sails mounted

FInished with Massachusets Navy ensign

Scratch Chesapeake, Rattlesnake, and Halifax schooner