My Workbench

Friday, May 16, 2014

I - Rory McCreadie’s step by step guide to painting and rigging 1:1200 Scale Napoleonic Ships - Part I

Since it is the time of year that I have little time to work on miniatures I thought it would be a good oportunity to share an excellent How-To guide written by my good friend and Christchurch shipmate Rory McCready. He doesn't have a blog site so I have offered mine. I plan to share some of his remarkable creations here from time to time as well as this informative guide.


Rory McCreadie’s step by step guide to painting and rigging 1:1200 Scale Napoleonic Ships

Part I Painting

Hi Guy's
I'm not a Modeler that wargames, but a Wargamer that models. Vol Willams is the brains behind all this, He found this helpful and wished to share, thinking it would help naval wargames of the SOL period. This is how I do it. It is not the best or only way, it's just my way. You can use this guide for most scales used for SOL gamimg. You can take it all or in part as you wish. I base the work from Rod “Langton's Paint and rigging guide” with Rory add-ons and misses. I hope this helps my Shipmates in what to do or not do with model ships. I am making wargaming models not art. So here goes. I would read through each part before starting. 

I'm going to use Langton's NR5, M-TJ, MX16 and PE4 for painting and standing rigging.

And because she is has more sails set "Selafail" 74 gun Langton's NR2 For the running rigging.

I glued sails to masts and stern to the hull. Using the Activator. This makes the glue go off faster.

I drilled a fine (small) hole just above the main mast fighting top. Through the lower bow. Behind the Catheads and Channels (4 holes each side). I also drilled bigger holes though the mast holes.

I added the Bowsprit to the ship. The Activator helps  here.
  Sprayed them all white.

Sprayed the base blue. then puff sprayed it green.
I use Citadel, Army Painter and Formula P3 acrylic paints. Why? I love Army Painter spray paints and just buy the colours I like.
I paint the Stern and the Bows, Head Rails Black.

I add blue spots to the windows of the Stern.

This one is very hard to show, I added a brown to the Head rails by dry-brushing it over the black.

I will not tell you what colours to use. That is up to you and what fleet you are painting. I dry brushed Bronze over the whole Stern. Some of you may wish to add more detail at this point on the Stern. I had to use two photos for this one.

 I painted the inside top of the Stern Bronze too.

 The hull: Most of the hulls are Black, but not all. Some had different colours or more than one colour. Sorry! But that is a guide in itself. Not for here. The Russian's had black and white ships. So I have painted mine Black. Also do the Bow post and under the stern. You can also do the Catheads and front Beakhead (The bit behind the Bowsprit with the Knightheads (the loo’s) on). I have left mine for now. Do the top of the Bulwarks too. But do not paint the Hammock netting. I paint them white later. I have not painted below the lowest Wale. I also painted the Gratings Black.

I then dry brushed over the Black on the Gratings.
Now it's time to clean out the drilled holes with a pin. Do this often.

For the decks, pick two colours that match. But one a little darker.
Using the darker of the two, paint the main gun deck in the waist and the Beakhead.
Paint the rest of the decks with the lighter colour. Sorry! Not a good photo!
Around this time I paint the model number under the new ships base.
I now paint the Catheads and the front bulkhead behind the Beakhead, both sides and along the top. This could be done at the hull stage if using the same colour as the hull. As I was using the same colour I also painted around the Gratings.
The next bit is the start of the “Oh! My God.” Mistakes can and will be made. It is O.K. as you just paint over your mistakes. It is now hard to take photos of the work as it is getting smaller for now. It is mostly just dots and short lines.
I painted the inside of the Bulwarks and Waist.
The Gun Carriages and some of the deck furnishings. Again not the best photo.
I finished off the deck furnishings and Bitts on the inside of the Bulwarks with a darker colour.
The last part of the inside of the ship is the black bits: The galley chimney, the Cannon barrels and the doorways to the inside of the ship under the decks.

The next bit is back to the hull.
I have painted the white lines on the ship. The lines are painted on the line of the gun ports.
As I was doing the white colour I dry-brushed the base.
The last bit of this run is the rest of the hull under the bottom Wale. This can be white for the lead paint. Before 1779 all ships had lead painted bottoms, after this date more and more ships had copper bottoms. As the Russians sat for a long time in iced up harbours, I have painted my Russian fleet with old copper e.g. dark green.

I painted the gun ports black and did a little (lot of) re-painting.

The start of the sails and masts. Colour of sails??? I have tried many colours of sails from dark browns to white. I try to use 2 colours on the sails. You must use what you like the look of yourself. I paint the sails a base colour.

I dry brushed the sails with a darker colour at the bottom sides. Large areas, not just the corners and across the reefs.

Using the same colour, I painted the lines across and down the sails. Sorry not a good photo.

I then painted the yard arms.

 As I was painting the yard arms black, I painted the first side of the ratlines.

The upper masts are done.
Afterwards I painted the lower masts. I find doing it this way round is better for me, as you are working from the inside of the mast to the outside.

I then paint the tops and fighting tops. They are mainly black for all fleets. I paint the underside first.

I now paint the 2nd side of the ratlines.

The last part I do of the paint job is the iron bands around the lower masts. For this fleet I use black. Nelson liked his fleets to have yellow. Before 1800 the bands were made of rope, so would be brown.

Just have to put it all together and start the rigging. That is the next part.
I use thick super glue. Langton say's to use thin glue; I find that I can control thicker glue better. You must watch for buttons of glue on the tops on the masts.

Re-drill the mast holes as painting can fill them in.

I rub off a little of the paint from the bottom of the masts with fine sand paper. This stops a collar of paint being push up around the mast.

I use a cocktail stick to put the glue on the model.

By spinning the stick you can keep the glue on the end of the stick as you move into/onto the model. When in place stop spinning and let the glue drop.

Do the foremast first. Line up the 3rd top with the jib or first jib if more than one. You may have to bend the jib or the bowsprit a little to make it fit.

Make sure the main mast is a little higher than the foremast and a little backwards.

Add the mizzen mast.

As I have the glue to hand I glue the name to the base (badly this time).

I spray the ship and base with matt varnish.

I use the pin again to clean the holes on the ship before rigging.

Well that completes Part I Of Rory's Guide. Stay tuned for Part II Standing Rigging!
Comments are welcome!


David said...

Hi there. Stumbled across this blog after doing some research wrt 1/600 scale sailing ship conversions. 1st, very sorry to hear of the loss in 2018 or Mr. McCreadie. He seemed like such a terrific fellow and hobbyist! My condolences.

I started reading with great interest the series on rigging and painting 1/1200 models. I have large fleets of various quality..British, French, Spanish, American and am always looking to improve my modelling etc. I was wondering if you have all of these parts as a single document, and if so, might I have a copy?

Best regards and hope you stay safe during this pandemic!


A Miniatures Hobby Room said...

Hello David
Thank you for your comment about Rory. He was a prince of a man, a great friend and mentor. He is still sorely missed.

Sadly no, I don't. Rory was not very computer literate, even less than me, LOL. I had to piecemeal these guides from emails he would send me a bit at a time. He would send me a dozen photos and I would send back 3 of them with a request for commentary on each one. Then the next 3, and the next 3, and the last 3. Then we would start all over with the next dozen photos of his progress on a ship. Rory was very stoked on the idea of me posting the guides and sincerely hoped they might help someone in the hobby. That is what Rory was about, helping!

You are more than welcome David to copy and paste all of Rory's guides into a Word doc for your own use. That is what Rory wanted.

David said...

ok, many thanks. I I will see what I can do to make it roll up very nicely and neatly ("tiddly"...if you will! LOL..)

If/When I get it into a good state, would you like a copy?


A Miniatures Hobby Room said...

Thank you for the offer David, but no. I have them here and I have by now done so many ships that I no longer need to refer to the guides. And I have developed my own slightly different techniques that work better for me.
Question: Do you have a blog?

David said...

Ok, . Wrt a blog, no, I do not. Have considered one on and off, but have not investigated how to etc. Maybe you can recommend methodology etc for starting one?


A Miniatures Hobby Room said...

Well this blog is using Google blogger. Being the computer challenged person that I am, it was the simplest I could find. I still haven't figured out how to use it to its full potential however. But I still can post and get the widgets where I want them.

David said...

Thanks, may have to get off my behind and try this out....I can understand being a Luddite & all...LOL

Thanks very much and stay safe!

Best regards


A Miniatures Hobby Room said...

Ok, I would enjoy seeing your work, which is the fun of blogging after all :-)

Stay well,