- Unrated 2 - 14 guns 30 MM x 40 MM
- Unrated sloop of war 16 - 18 guns 30 MM x 60 MM
- 6th rates 20 - 28 guns 30 MM x 70 MM
- 4th & 5th rates 30 - 60 guns 30 MM x 80 MM
- 2nd & 3rd rates 64 - 98 guns 30 MM x 100 MM
- 1st rates >100 guns 40 MM x 100 MM
- I use acid free mat board for bases. It's inexpensive and a sheet lasts forever. It is easy to cut with a sharp Xacto knife or a guillotine type paper cutter like I use. Next I liberally coat both sides with two coats of spar varnish. This helps prevent warping from the moist sculpting plaster later.
- After the varnish thoroughly dries, the plaster can be applied. I use vinyl spackling for sculpting the sea base. I determine how I am going to orient the sails on the ship and then sculpt the waves slanted across the base in the desired direction.
- After the plaster has set up a bit but not completely hard, I will push the hull bottom into the plaster to mark it.
- When setting it aside to fully harden I set a weight down on the center of the hull impression to ensure the base dries flat and does not bow up.
- When completely hard the base can be painted. I completely coat the base with a navy blue.
- When that dries I apply a light dry brushing of aqua green with the waves and white against the wave crests. If it is a calm sea base I skip the white.
- After the paint is dry the base is coated with Americana Triple Thick Gloss Glaze, or I have also used Mod Podge Gloss. When completely dry the base will be almost hard as rock but can still be carved with a Xacto knife if needed to make hull fit adjustments.
- I prefer to add a name and nationality to the ships I build. I create my labels using Microsoft Word and print out the sheets, I keep them in a binder and when I need a label I just cut it out.
- I save clear plastic packaging to cut up for this purpose. I cut a strip the same size as the base but a bit longer to take the label.
- After I cut out the label to size, super glue is used to glue it to the clear plastic. Then the base is super glued to the plastic strip.
- This not only helps the bases glide easily on the sea mats, but it also protects the ship information I write on the underside of the base.
So that is it! I tried other methods early on and different paint schemes, but I rarely vary from this method now.
I hope this was helpful.