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PostPosted: Tue Feb 01, 2011 11:43 pm 
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Location: Lancaster, CA USA
Hello to all! This is my first thread of what I hope to be many build threads.

The ship(s) that I am constructing are two different scales of the same ship. Why? Why two scales? And why this ship? I'll take the second part first. The ship USS Arcadia AD23 was mu Uncle Gerald's ship when he was in the Navy from '63-'67. He was an MM-2 (Machinist Mate 2nd Class) and worked of course in the engine room. Not a very glamorous job or ship, but when you are 5 and 6 and he's your "Uncle Jerry" it doesn't matter. That was my first memory of the Navy, that old funky ship. Gerald, as he later came to prefer to be called, also first turned me onto model building at that same age and got the bug planted in me. As an infant he diapered me and took me to Central park, and over the years he turned me onto a lot more, but that's for another thread.

Well he retired this year and our birthday's are only two days apart and so I wanted to give him something special this year as a "Thank You Uncle Jerry" for all that he has done for me during our lives. So at first I was going to build just one in 350 scale since that is the scale I am most used to building in and so I did some research on the ship. That whole class of ship, nay that whole type has been grossly neglected and so this would be a pretty fresh subject I thought.

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The Arcadia is a modified C3 hulled floating machine shop and supply ship for WWII era Destroyers. She was 493' long and 68' 7" beam. The C3 hull is the direct follow-on to the Victory and Liberty ships. It was the next iteration of that class of vessel. The Arcadia is a Klondike Class Tender and in-place of vast cargo hulls is every type of machine and workshop imaginable at that time. Machine shop, Wood Shop, Print Shop, Dry Cleaners, plus many others. Also in what holds it did have, it could rearm Destroyers with a full complement of torpedoes and depth charges, as well as restock it with food and dry stores. Plus staterooms for the Destroyer squadron Admiral and his complete staff. They occupy most of the 02 level. I have pics of an AD with 8 destroyers and a DLG and a Sub all moored to her and the dock, so this was a very key vessel back then when they actually fixed things on the spot.

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First step was to see what kits are or were produced that were close. The only one close was the 1955 Revell issue "Hawaiian Pilot" in 1:380 scale. (1:380? What is that all about I asked myself, soon to be made clear.) Quick check of eBay reveals they are available and I don't have to sell a limb to get it. Week later I have the kit and it's, well, "primitive" so say the least. The railings are molded in! Wow!... But the hull is nearly exact. Before I had the plans from "Floating Drydock" I had a few pictures and thought that the hull shape was wrong, so I got froggy with the Tamiya Polyester putty and thought I was "Fixing the hull". Yeah, no. I did learn how to stretch the hull though so when the replacement kit (okay stop laughing) comes I will know how to stretch it even better now.

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What is GOOD about the Revel kit is that it's hull is nearly dead on and other than length, the shape is pretty close. Oh and it's a waterline. Well I don't know what the actual draft of the real Hawaiian Pilot is, but for the Arcadia it about mid point between the actual waterline and the bottom of the hull. I am only going to use the hull on the 1:380 but correct for length and breadth. I will use no other parts from the kit. I intent to scratch build all the superstructure and decks from sheet and rod stock. The 1:192 version will have a hand carved hull, and all decks and superstructure will be likewise scratch built. I intend to carve out the hull from a 4"X4"X36" with two 1/4"X4"X36" sheets which will be laminated onto one axis to bring the rough block dimensions to 4.5"X4"X32" needed to start to rough out the hull.

It's a pretty simple hull. A big box in the middle with a tapered bow and stern. I took the plans to Kinko's or FedEx, whatever, they have a large format copier there and I had several copied made of the plans in 1:1 size and also at 50% reduction for the smaller ship. A lot of the copies I did myself on the normal format machines. I made lots of copies. Also I bought a can of "Scotch Spray Mount" This stuff is great! A light misting (And I do mean light misting, really less is more here...) on the back of a plan copy and it instantly makes it into a PostIt. It sticks just enough so you can cut or sand a part with the plan stuck right to it. So I will stick the F/S copy to the sides of the balsa block and take the bandsaw to it doing the side profile first and then the top profile.

I ordered some 24" long by 11" wide Evergreen .030" sheet stock and I started cutting out the decks: (The stainless ruler is 18" for scale)

First the 380 one:
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The 192 deck is 30.5" overall so I split the difference and made the main deck in two pieces:
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The fore-peak and foc'sle will be interesting to do:
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Here are some of the copies:
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Here are all the decks cut out for the 1/192 and arraigned close to plan order: These all have .030" plastic decks and the paper is lightly adhered to the decks.
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The boats that need to be made or bought. I know I will have to make the 50' MTL, I may make them all.
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Now here is what I have made up for the 1/380 so far: (The 1/192 is stacked up along side.)
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The one good thing about the Revell hull that will have to be duplicated on the larger one is the bow strakes are dead on to the Arcadia. I measured them and they are exact. Well that is what I have done to date. I intend to make the superstructure from 1/2" X .010 stick styrene. On both scales I will score lightly the outlines of where the deckhouses go and build them up using 1/4" for the 380 scale and 1/2" for the 192 scale. I have never scratchbuilt a kit ever, so if I do things good or bad, feel free to let me know.

Thanks for reading so far!

_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


Last edited by mclare on Wed Jul 17, 2013 8:10 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 1:07 am 
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welcome m.c this a very ambitious project you are taking on.a laminated wood hull ,many years ago i made a graff spree and bismark from a block of cedar,so i appreceat the work involved.i will keep a keen eye on this one .happy modeling :thumbs_up_1:


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 10:35 am 
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MC,

Good start! I hope you enjoy scratching the C3s.

Did two 1/350 C3 APAs not long ago, the link is here...viewtopic.php?f=59&t=40896&start=60

jim

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aux viewtopic.php?f=59&t=40896

CV-3 viewtopic.php?t=39515&p=263120#p263120

CV-6 viewtopic.php?t=33201&p=201342#p201342


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:30 pm 
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Hi MC welcome A very different subject to take on and one we seldom see . All the more interesting :thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1:
Dave Wooley


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:45 pm 
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Welcome, MC.

You have a truly ambitious project, but it looks to be a well thought out start.
I am curious about what species of wood you intend to use for the 1:192 hull.

Russ


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:50 pm 
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Location: Lancaster, CA USA
Thanks guys for the kind words of support. Not at the "Pulling the hair out by my roots" yet, but if I get there, I'll let you know.

Jim - I am reading your thread now. DAMN FINE WORK! I have that movie "Away All Boats" and if you want a copy if you don't have it, LMK.

I didn't know if it was okay to combine both boat scales into one thread. On another forum, they kinda frowned on that. I also posted a bunch of pics of my workbench and all my kits and pics of my hobby room and they didn't like that much, so I came here.

In this thread I wanted to build both side by side so the modeler can see the differences that go into each scale and then choose which size they would want to start a kit on. Each ship uses a slightly different approach of the same methods, so it will be interesting to see them simultaneously.

The 380 version will be waterline, or nearly so and I will make a base for it that will only be temporary because I intend to do a diorama with 3-4 destroyers tied up alongside her like in the first pic. Another thought I had for a FAR more interesting subject was in 1966 the Arcadia was called upon to service the carrier Saratoga. She was tied up with the Sara for over a month and I think that would be a fantastic scene. It's accurate to history and involves carriers which I love! But I don't want to scratchbuild a Sara! But it would be a stunner!

_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2011 12:55 pm 
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Russ2146 wrote:
Welcome, MC.

You have a truly ambitious project, but it looks to be a well thought out start.
I am curious about what species of wood you intend to use for the 1:192 hull.

Russ


Standard Balsa. I paid extra for the densest grain they had. After the plug is sanded to final form I intend to cover it in F/G cloth and F/G resin. 3 light coats of resin and it will be hard as a rock. Then a good sanding to crack the patina and sand to final form. I used to build R/C Jets and that is how we did the wings and fuse.

If anyone has a better suggestion I am absolutely willing to listen and learn.

_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:57 pm 
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Well in the last two weeks or so since I last posted, I have accomplished quite a lot and the carving and sanding gods have been good to me this week. More on that later.

Since I am new here forgive me if I breach protocol and make one long post. I looked around here and see that's what you guys seem to do, one post with lots of pics. I did that at another board and they wigged out so I came here.

Anyways, I have gotten a fair bit done on both scales.

First the smaller 1/384 hull. To date I still have not received the replacement hull but I did get all of the deckhouse superstructure done. In Mike Ashey's Excellent book: "Basics of Model Shipbuilding", he outlines a method of constructing the deckhouse superstructure using layers of sheet styrene. Excellent idea, but a lot of cuts I felt. Well since this ship is pretty square and a deck is 8 feet and 8 feet is 1/4" in this scale, use square rod stock. So I ordered a bunch of 1/4" by 1/4" and 1/4" by 1/2" and 1/4" by 3/4" and 1/4" by .125 and also .100 thick. I decided on a top down building method. Constructs it from the top deck, the 04 level down to the 02 level. Don't know why, just did. I ordered the rod stock in 24" lengths because they will also come in handy on the larger one.

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Here I cut the deckhouse parts into square segments as Mike directs in his book.
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Now I set up my Mitre box and calipers to start cutting stock. I like this MB because it has grooves to hold the bar in place and nice and secure:
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Now I have two blocks the same length and I will bond them together with weld:
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I use the edge of the MB as a straightedge:
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And sand flush:
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_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 13, 2011 11:59 pm 
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An absolute necessity for scratchbuilding IMO:
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You only need a LIGHT dusting to make the plan stick to the plastic:
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Now take it to the disk sander as Mike says: (I got a speed control to slow the spin so it won't melt the plastic too badly)
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Sometimes you get melted bits and you have to extract carefully: It cools quickly and snaps right off.
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Pretty close: Finish it by hand.
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Two decks done and fitted:

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_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 14, 2011 12:03 am 
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Fitting more:
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Test fit with the old hull:
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So that's where I'm at with the smaller one. Once the new hull comes I can cut it and stretch it and fill it and brace the deck supports and get the decks on. I have most of the parts and brass I need. I may need to order a Liberty Ship set though.

I am going to handle each one is a different post though so I will close this out and start a new post for the big boy.

_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


Last edited by mclare on Mon Jul 15, 2013 12:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 14, 2011 12:18 am 
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mc, you are making good progress.i am going to lose my position as a fast builder :big_grin: .one can always learn somthing new all the time,i like the movable spray adesive and putting a speed control on the bench sander. :thumbs_up_1: i can hardly wait to see the 1/192 scale.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 14, 2011 1:17 am 
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Now for the 1/192 version. As I said I ordered a 4" by 4" by 36" block of Balsa along with two 1/4" sheets and they finally came:

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I also went and got a 1/4" by 6" wide by 4 foot long piece of plate steel. Patton's Steel had a 5' min so I got that and paid for an extra cut. It was $22.00. Why you ask? An old friend of mine that taught me hos to sand wings said to get that size and then get two sanding belts and cut them and glue them to each side of the plate steel and you have an absolutely perfectly straight sanding surface. 1/4" is just thick enough that it won't flex on it's own and thin enough that it's not too heavy.

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The smaller piece is good for a smaller version of that and to also be perfectly straight weight too.

Here I am preparing the two 1/4 "skins" to widen the plug:

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Coating the core:

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Now it's all sandwiched and sitting on the plate steel with a bunch of books weighting it down. You have to keep making sure it's all aligned. LOTS of saran wrap to keep things from getting messy.

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Now I have to prepare the plan and view so that I can shape the core. You can see the frame numbers there. The plans I got only had cross sections for those frames so I found those points on the keel where the frames are marked and made reference marks on the side and top views. Then I took an Xacto and carefully cut the plan down to the main deck and trimmed it on all sides.

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Now here I transpose it to the deck plan:
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Next I took the cross sections and traced them out and glued them to .030 sheet and made gauges for the hull contours:
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Over the next couple of days I tried to contact local cabinet and woodworkers to see if I could get them to do the rough cuts for me. Simple task I thought. BUT NOOOOO.... !!! No one in this dusty little berg wanted to and normally I would go out and Pop for one, but I am in the middle of dropping a new AMG motor in my 91 SEC right now so I don't have a spare $300.00 paying around saying "Hey, go but a band saw with me..." So I had to make due with what I had which was that same sander. I had just bought 3 new belts at Lowes so I took to sanding down the top deck first. Now I know what you are all saying "The angle won't be right. Well I agreed, so I went very lowly and kept checking the square every few minutes. And once I got into a rhythm it cam off very easily and was daed on square right down to the line:

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No joke how much sawdust:
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Action shot:
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Here it is roughed out:
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And the 384 in the foreground for reference:
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Dead on square:
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So next I had to do the bottom contours. I had no idea on how to do this but i took a stab at it. I had the model with the putty from when I tried to "Correct" it. so I sanded down to see the original plastic and I meansure from the freeboard to the bottom of the hull as represented by the model and found that it is 1/2" in 384 or 1" in 192 from where the bottom really is. So I knew I could go down to that point at the keel and be good to sand up from there and round it off. So I drew a centerline down the aft section of the Revell hull and made marks every 1/4" longitudinally and then transposed them onto paper using my compass. Then I drew the curves and picked the better of the two and folded it in half and cut the line to get a perfect mirror image:

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Here is one side: I always do that. I start one something and forget to take pics of it and then I have to go back.

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First rough shaping:
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So here is how I did it: (Don't cringe!)

I take my Dremel with the wand and the drum sander and I mark the bottom of the hull with the line and I start grinding:

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Here is both sides roughed in:

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The bow taking shape:
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The stern roughed in:
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Down the centerline:
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Here I am carving a channel for a 3/4" by 1/4" by 3.5" block for a reinforcement for under the main deck. I will drill into this for the after cargo masts. I will weld it to the main deck and then epoxy it and the main deck down to the balsa.
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Now I am doing the same for the bow. It is far more sculpted than I had first thought:

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Still a little work needed, but MUCH closer now to my reference:
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Now for the forepeak: I take a piece of 1/4" sheet balsa and mark centers:
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Next I affix the main deck template to one side and the 01 level to the other making sure both side centers line up top to bottom:

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I used a knife and trimmed it first and then sanded to rough shape and then glued it to the bow:
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Next was to rough in the stern keel and rudder. Here I used 1/8" sheet and I had enough to do both pieces. I used the cutout from the plan copy and used the Demel with a grinder tip then I cleaned it up with rat files.

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Next I carved out the notch in the stern of the ship and you better you bet I measured twice, no three, no four or five times.

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Pretty good fit:
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Cutout the rudder:
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Now to drill the holed for the rudder pins so the hinge works:

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Next was a quandary, the rudder yoke has to go up in there and I didn't know what it looked like so I just took some 1/4" square hollow tube stock and I maked an outline and cutout an opening for it:

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The finished assy: (Don't know if it's right? But it looks right to the plan.
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Well that's where I am at one the 1/192 and the 1/394 too. Hope you guys like the progress and pics!

_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


Last edited by mclare on Mon Jul 15, 2013 12:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:14 pm 
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russclark wrote:
mc, you are making good progress.i am going to lose my position as a fast builder :big_grin: .one can always learn somthing new all the time,i like the movable spray adesive and putting a speed control on the bench sander. :thumbs_up_1: i can hardly wait to see the 1/192 scale.


Thanks for the kind words! High praise indeed!

_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2011 4:24 am 
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Hello to all! After about 9 months of working on the restoration of my Mercedes 560SEC, I started back on my Arcadia Project. I got a fair bit done on the smaller 1:350th version, but I really wanted to get the larger 1:192 version done for my Uncle pronto! I missed our birthday''s in May, so I am shooting for Xmas, but it might be our Bday's again maybe?

I got pretty far along so far and it will maybe take a few days to catch up.

So the next task was to carve out a channel for the mounting board. Not the lower visible one, but one in the base of the hull to mount the mounting nuts in. The balsa is too soft and they wold of course breakout easily. So I got 1/2" hardwood and traced the lines on the bottom of the hull after carefully marking it:

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And then took a chisel and cut carefully along the marked lines being careful not to go too far out of the lines, lest I have less to fill!

Here is the channel roughed out:

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Here are the blind nuts installed and glued in:

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Here it is glued in place, and I drew a center-line down both the hull of the ship and of course the hardwood board to ensure proper alignment:

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I epoxied it into place and put a 1/4" steel plate and some books to ensure it was glued snugly in place:

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And with the filler pieces: (Sorry, can't compete with the ancient Egyptians with their stone carving, I had to use fillers!)

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Now here is a trick I learned from my very old friend Russ from my R/C Jet days. He taught me the trick to sanding trailing and leading edges. You go to a steel distributor like Patton's and get a piece of 1/4" steel plate 5" wide and 4' long.

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See if you can get a 'clean' piece, little rust and no grease. Go to Harbor Freight and get a couple of their 4" wide sanding belts:

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And get a spray can of heavy spray adhesive like the 3M 'Super Trim Adhesive' from Pep Boys or Auto Zone. Cut the belt across and then spray the glue on both the steel and the belt. Let it completely dry to the touch (15-20 min) and then fasten. Make sure you lay it down well and flat. You will have a perfectly flat sanding surface. You can go thinner on the metal, but then it will bend and you lose that. So ask the guy for the first size that will not bend at 4'.

Back to the ship: So once I made up the sanding board, I sanded the bottom flat, and puttied it for days. I used a heavy 'Bondo' type Tamiya 2 part putty to fill all of the cracks and flow it flat. Once that was sanded, I filled it with the lighter, 'white' Tamiya putty, and sanded smooth from there. Didn't get a lot of pics of that, sorry..

So the next thing I had to tackle was how to make the 'strakes' I guess you would call them. The front curved parts on the Foc'sile and the curves on the main deck there. So I tried an experiment: I made a bunch of copies, both normal and 'mirror' image. I made about a doz of each. Then I cut them carefully out of the paper and taped them together at the bow:

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And then I tack glued them to plastic and cut out the outline and then I have a single bow piece. The first one worked pretty good, so I made a longer second one that included the second strake. A quick test fit confirmed what I though, that the 2D plan did not accurately represent the curve and depth of the hull. So I cut a section out and then did my calcs and measured and added the appropriate amount:

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And here is the rough fit and tack gluing:
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I'm waaay ahead of this in the actual build, but I will post more soon I promise! I have pics of most everything thus far.

Thanks for viewing!

_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


Last edited by mclare on Mon Jul 15, 2013 12:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2011 5:02 am 
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Very interesting Mclare, :thumbs_up_1: :thumbs_up_1: :wave_1: and Welcome.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2011 5:13 am 
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Thanks. Probably "Welcome Back" I was here at the beginning of the year and took a hiatus to work on my car. I appreciate the post!

Thanks! Nice to meet you.

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Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2011 7:02 am 
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Hi maclare
great construction ship
i like so much the attention and technics
welcome here :smallsmile: :thumbs_up_1:


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2011 9:35 am 
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Very nicely done and educational. Love the progress shots, keep them coming man, she's looking great. Glad to see an unsung hero of the fleet being built :thumbs_up_1:

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Drawing Board:
1/700 Whiff USS Leyte and escorts 1984
1/700 Whiff USN Modernized CAs 1984
1/700 Whiff ASW Showdown - FFs vs SSGN 1984

Slipway:
1/700 Whiff USN ASW Hunter Killer Group Dio 1984


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2011 3:03 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2011 2:48 pm
Posts: 74
Location: Lancaster, CA USA
Hi again guys! Time for another update. I kinda put it aside because I got a new GF and she has been occupying a lot of my time (Free or otherwise) but she loves my modelling and encourages it and wants me to finish this project soon so she can see it finished. Plus I want my Uncle to have it too.

Where was I? Skinning and shaping the hull I believe...

Here is a pic of the hull after I glassed it with 1/2 oz cloth and 3 coats of resin:

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Around the bow where I laid the plastic card stock I applied the resin very liberally in an effort to strengthen it for shaping.

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Here is the stern section:
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First Sanding and shaping:

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Here's the fo'c'sle area where I am cutting out the anchor chute:

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First Primer coat. Just a light spray of Mr. Surfacer 500. I love Mr. Surfacer 500 and 1000 primer. It is very light and goes on evenly and sands off easier. It lets me see the surface imperfections and correct them with Tamiya White Putty:
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Still a lot of perfecting to do:
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I sanded it all off in order to level the bottom properly:
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_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


Last edited by mclare on Mon Jul 15, 2013 12:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 29, 2011 3:19 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2011 2:48 pm
Posts: 74
Location: Lancaster, CA USA
More bottom shaping:
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Another primer coat, this time with Mr. Surfacer 1200:
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Here is the stern section after I shaped it a little more:
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The Bow:
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Closeup of the Anchors:
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Bottom spraying of the Hull Anti-Fouling Red. I used WEM paint thinned down and shot through my Iwata airbrush:
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_________________
Good Modeling!

Michael Clare

On the Ways:
Scratch-building: 1/192 USS America CV-66

Finished:
Scratch-built: 1/192 USS Arcadia AD-23
Kits: 1/350 Adm. Kuznetsov & USS Wasp LHD-1


Last edited by mclare on Mon Jul 15, 2013 1:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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