My Workbench

Thursday, December 9, 2021

1/700 British 24-gun Porcupine Class Frigate HMS Pandora

HMS Pandora was a 24-gun Porcupine class frigate of the Royal Navy built at Deptford and launched on 17 May 1779. She was deployed in North America during the American War for Independence. She was laid up in ordinary after 1783. She is best known as the ship sent to search for the Bounty mutineers in 1790. She was wrecked on the outer Great Barrier Reef on 29 August 1791 during the return voyage. 
  •  Length: 114 ft-7 in overall 
  • Beam: 32 ft-3 in 
  • Depth of Hold: 10 ft-3 in 
  • Complement: 140-160 men and boys 
  • As-built:   Upper deck: 22 x 9 pounder long guns Quarterdeck: 2 x 6 pounders 
  • By 1815: Upper deck: 14 x 9 pounder long guns and 8 x 18 pounder carronades Quarterdeck: 2 x 6 pounders 

 Inspiration paintings:
Figurehead inspiration
This is a 3D resin model from Henry Turner. It is beautifully detailed and quite delicate. While trying to drill or install rigging tie-off points, I had several breakouts that I had to come up with ways to repair. I also found that painting the thin rails with cyanoacrylate glue considerably strengthens them enough to hold rigging. Another challenge was creating the Iconic Pandora figurehead and getting it as right as I could at this scale. 

Note the brass loops for the mainmast stays. A breakout on the starboard side had to be repaired.

I just think this class had beautiful lines!

My mast stock arranged by size

I had to create a new page for my mast log since I had not built a ship of this size in this scale yet.

Masts cut and separated from bow to stern

Plastic bread clips make great fighting platforms

Sprit plate and platforms cut and drilled

Mast and top mast

T'gallant mast added

First mast stage complete

Trees added to complete the masts

Dry fitted

Cloth sails cut out

Masts cemented in place

Sails tinted and shaped

Spars cut and separated by mast

The process is to glue on the spars. When dry, tie them to the mast. Then tie on the sails

First half of the standing rigging is done. At this point I stop to make the ratlines and get them mounted before continuing the rigging.

Ratlines are on and the standing rigging is complete. The last steps are the running rigging and the flag.

Best I could do with the figurehead

Drat! While photographing Pandora I accidently knocked a 1/1200 West Indiaman to the floor. I don't believe it was much damaged until I stepped back to located it. I drug it under my shoe. She lost her bow sprit and foremast in the squall, but the rigging held it pretty much together. Hopefully the repairs won't be too costly.

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

1/700 French 74-gun Ship Fougueux

This is my second completed Temeraire class 74-gun Mann O'War PLA 3D printed ship designed by Simon Mann. It is also my second try at real cloth sails. Like the last ship, I have previously built and posted the Fougueux in 1/1200 scale back in April of 2017. She was launched in 1795 and fought at Trafalgar. She was captured by HMS Temeraire and perished in the storm that followed the battle. The ship's boats and all of the rest, aside from the hull, is scratch built. Hope you like it!

Tracing the sails out on the cloth

The 1/450 scale plastic sails from a Pyro Victory kit

Cloth sails dipped in PVA/water/paint mix and stretched over the templates

Making the furled sprit sail

Sails and masts laid out

Partial sails and standing rigging done and ratlines ready to be trimmed

I don't know about the cloth sails. Is it too much? The paper is a lot easier and I'm not sure how much better they look. I think I might have gone too far trying to get more billow effect on this one. The first one is probably better. Please tell me what you think, are the sails on Dougay Trouin or Fouguex better? Do the paper sails on the Argonauta and Purisima Conception look better than these cloth sails?