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PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2006 4:00 pm 
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Location: North Carolina
Here is a 1/125 scale scratch-built Fletcher class destroyer.

This build was inspired by, but is NOT the classic Lindberg "Blue
Devil Destroyer" kit.


When complete, she'll be built to represent DD-804,
as she appeared in 1945 wearing the dramatic MS 31/11d scheme.

Of the 175 Fletchers built, DD-804 was one of 21 Fletchers built
at Seattle-Tacoma. Often thought to be one of five twin-rudder
Fletchers, Jay Milliken, a former crewman, sent photos conclusively
proving this ship had just one rudder.

Here is DD-804 in the Pacific in late World War Two
wearing MS 31/11d scheme as I intend to build her:

Click on thumbnail to view larger photo

Image

Image

Inspired by, but definitely not, the Lindberg model.
As you know, Lindberg makes a popular, fun, motorized model of the
Fletcher
. It is big and pond-worthy. But it is not a very accurate
representation of a real Fletcher. There are noticeable hull, bridge
and turret shape inaccuracies with the Lindberg kit. Like many other
modelers I like the size and scale of the Lindberg kit but wanted better
accuracy. So I chose to make a new, more accurate model from scratch
using whatever Lindberg kit parts that were reasonably accurate.

1/96 scale plans obtained from Floating Drydock were reduced to 1/125
scale. The plans showed what, if anything, was accurate with the Lindberg
kit and could be used on my model. Aftermarket white-metal 1/125th
scale Bofors and Oerlikons are available from HR Products so I bought
sets of those. They are not yet installed.

First item to build was the hull. A real Fletcher has a very gracefully
shaped hull. A new, properly shaped hull was carved from a solid balsa
block and sanded to shape then fiberglassed for strength. The real ship's
hull plates were made from 1/4-inch thick steel, pretty thin in 1/125 scale.
So the hull plating was replicated by simply painting on thicker layers of
primer for the overlapping strakes.

Click on thumbnail to view larger photo

Scratchbuilt hull next to Lindberg kit hull:


Image

Image

Next items to replace were the deckhouses. The plans indicated that
generally the kit deckhouses were accurate in dimension and layout but
not in detail. For example, the pilot house has four portholes (airports)
on its face but a real "square-bridge Fletcher has five. So I replaced
the deckhouses. Let's begin with the foreward deckhouse and bridge.

Image

Image

Image

More to follow!

_________________
Best wishes to you!
-Steve Larsen

On the ways:
1:350 USS Saratoga CV-3 (1944)
1:350 USS Yorktown CV-10 (1945)
1:125 Fletcher class DD-804
1:192 USS Missouri BB-63 (1945)
1:350 HMS Duke of York (1945)


Last edited by Steve Larsen on Sat Dec 29, 2007 7:30 pm, edited 27 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2006 4:22 pm 
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Location: Newcastle Upon Tyne, England
Great work Steve, how long is she?

John


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2006 4:45 pm 
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She is 36.14 inches (91.8cm) long x 3.81 inches (9.68cm) wide. I like the big size a lot.

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Best wishes to you!
-Steve Larsen

On the ways:
1:350 USS Saratoga CV-3 (1944)
1:350 USS Yorktown CV-10 (1945)
1:125 Fletcher class DD-804
1:192 USS Missouri BB-63 (1945)
1:350 HMS Duke of York (1945)


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2006 5:25 pm 
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Location: Calgary, AB/Surrey, B.C., Canada
Cool! Couldn't you have saved the old bridge and made a second Fletcher for it?

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2006 5:28 pm 
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Excellent styrene work!! I am impressed. Another great build on the way! :thumbs_up_1: :eyebrows: :thumbs_up_1:

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2006 7:26 pm 
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Location: Liverpool
Hi Steve Good to see you posting more on your superb builds and as Bill says a nice piece of styrene work. :thumbs_up_1:
Dave Wooley


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 15, 2006 8:35 pm 
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Location: Fort Worth, Texas
Hey Stephen
From one Fletcher builder to another; excellent work, that superstructure looks great! Keep up the good work she's going to be a beauty.

Bruce
USS Stevens DD479


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 16, 2006 10:37 am 
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Steve that thing looks incredible. Right down to the "I" in the little structural I-beams. Truly a work of art!

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2006 5:48 pm 
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Thanks, gentlemen!

If you haven't seen Bruce's USS Stevens, also in the "RC and Scratchbuilding" forum, you are missing a real treat. His styrene work is superb. And check out the hull plating detail.


Work continues...


The Venturi was tricky to make. On real ships, the device deflects wind
and spray from bridge personnel. You can see it on the forward edge of
the bridge splinter shielding. Research indicates real Fletchers' splinter
shielding varied greatly. Photos from "Destroyer History"
http://www.destroyerhistory.org/
were very helpful in determining how they appeared on USS Rooks.
Reinforcing strips have been added to the interior of the forward twin
Bofors tubs:

Click on thumbnail to view larger photo

Image
_____________________________________________________________
Supporting "I-beam" structural members have been added to the
undersides of the Bofors tubs:

Click on thumbnail to view larger photo

Image

_____________________________________________________________
Roughing out the aft deckhouse and aft-most twin Bofors position. The
bulkheads and decks are cut from .040 Evergreen styrene. Stiff .040
sheet is good for structural components resisting any tendency to
warp. The splinter shields are cut from .020 sheet. The corners of the
upper structure are rounded on the real ship at the joint. The model's will
be rounded later. The small styrene piece is one of the splinter shield
reinforcements not yet installed. The locations for the reinforcements are
marked in pencil on the shield before the shield is glued in position. The
open end of the Bofors position will be filled by a cylindrical Mk-51
Director platform.

Click on thumbnail to view larger photo

Image

_________________
Best wishes to you!
-Steve Larsen

On the ways:
1:350 USS Saratoga CV-3 (1944)
1:350 USS Yorktown CV-10 (1945)
1:125 Fletcher class DD-804
1:192 USS Missouri BB-63 (1945)
1:350 HMS Duke of York (1945)


Last edited by Steve Larsen on Fri Apr 27, 2007 7:38 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2006 8:14 pm 
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Location: nearby parallel universe
Steve that's some AWESOMELY clean work. What is the technique for forming those radii? It must be heat and bend? Such smoothe looking rounds!
I still haven't decided if my next large scale model will be a 16th pt-boat or a 96th Fletcher, but this thread has me leaning this way!

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2006 8:23 pm 
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Thanks, Chuck!

To make thin sheet curve I simply pull the sheet across the handle of a small file, the diameter of which is about half that of a standard pencil. Pull it hard and quickly. By drawing it quickly across the handle the sheet curls right up in a pretty uniform curve. I then glue the piece down to marks on the deck. This technique works very well for thin sheet.

For thicker sheet, I place the sheet in very hot water to soften it then press it to the proper shape by hand sometimes using another object as a form.

PT Boats are very cool but Fletcher's rock.

_________________
Best wishes to you!
-Steve Larsen

On the ways:
1:350 USS Saratoga CV-3 (1944)
1:350 USS Yorktown CV-10 (1945)
1:125 Fletcher class DD-804
1:192 USS Missouri BB-63 (1945)
1:350 HMS Duke of York (1945)


Last edited by Steve Larsen on Fri May 05, 2006 6:46 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2006 8:27 pm 
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Location: Tempe, Arizona
Steve, loking beautiful so far, keep us updated. I hope my Arizona will turn out that nice once I can start working on it again.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2006 8:47 pm 
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Steve, the detail work is coming along very nicely. If you need more pictures of square-bridge Fletchers let me know; I've probably got 70-80 pictures of the USS Kidd that might help you.

Best,
Bruce


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 22, 2006 9:58 pm 
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Thanks, Abe and Bruce!

Bruce, if you have any pictures showing any overhead areas or bulkhead details I would appreciate them immensely! I'd like to get the details right. Finding good photos of the overhead areas has been particularly tough!

_________________
Best wishes to you!
-Steve Larsen

On the ways:
1:350 USS Saratoga CV-3 (1944)
1:350 USS Yorktown CV-10 (1945)
1:125 Fletcher class DD-804
1:192 USS Missouri BB-63 (1945)
1:350 HMS Duke of York (1945)


Last edited by Steve Larsen on Fri Feb 10, 2006 11:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 7:54 am 
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Stephen,

Looking good...

Don't know if you've seen them or if they would be of any use to you but Fine Art Models large scale Fletcher models. There are a few pics of their version here: http://www.fineartmodels.com/pages/prod ... uct_id=190

I've been using them a lot for my build of the Tamiya Fletcher (albeit I haven't been that concerned with being accurate for a particular ship).

John


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 8:37 am 
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Beautiful models, only seven thousand dollars eh?

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 9:16 am 
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Wow! What a great job on that superstructure. Really clean and crisp! :thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1:

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 23, 2006 5:12 pm 
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Nice work there Steve, it's nice to see more builds on the scratchbuilding forum, and for a change, a smaller class of ship. I am not really an American ship fan, but I do like the Fletcher's.
Look forward to more pictures, as you progress. :thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1:

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2006 8:16 pm 
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Thanks for all the kind comments and helpful suggestions!!

Slowly but surely...

A little more work done on the aft deckhouse and Bofors platform.
Splinter shield reinforcing ribs and the base of the Mk-51 Director
platform are now installed. An open-topped, circular splinter shield will be
added to the top of the director base later. The penciled circles on the
deck indicate the positions of two of the 5"/38 single mounts.

Click on thumbnail to view larger photo

Image

_________________
Best wishes to you!
-Steve Larsen

On the ways:
1:350 USS Saratoga CV-3 (1944)
1:350 USS Yorktown CV-10 (1945)
1:125 Fletcher class DD-804
1:192 USS Missouri BB-63 (1945)
1:350 HMS Duke of York (1945)


Last edited by Steve Larsen on Fri Apr 27, 2007 7:39 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2006 9:12 pm 
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She's looking good Steve; keep up the good work.

Bruce


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