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PostPosted: Sat Sep 02, 2006 7:46 pm 
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Here are photos of the famous "Hull Model" and photos of the Smithsonian Museum's 1/48 scale model of USF Constitution.

The three photos below are National Archives photos of the famous "Hull Model" named for the model's first owner and ship's captain at the time, Isaac Hull. The Hull Model of USF Constitution was made by the real ship's crew and presented to their captain, Isaac Hull, as a gift just after their War of 1812 victories. The model now rests in the Peabody Museum in Massachusetts. Since the model was made by actual crew members it is considered to definitively show Constitution's true War of 1812 appearance. Certainly the ship's own crew knew what their ship looked like and built an accurate representation for their captain.

Of the many injection-molded plastic kits now commercially available the Revell 1/96 scale kit most closely resembles the Hull Model.

Note that Hull Model shows that Old Ironsides only carries gun port lids at the extreme bow. Period documents confirm that Old Ironsides carried no hinged lids at this time. Those lids that were present were removable and stored below decks prior to going into action.

Also note the coloring of the masts and fighting tops (white) and yards (black) and that this model of Constitution does not carry her name on the transom.
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Hull Model 1.jpg
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Hull Model 2.jpg
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Hull Model 3.jpg
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Compare the Hull Model photos to those of the Smithsonian Museum's 1/48 scale USF Constitution model which was built from early plans and using the Hull Model as a significant reference. The Smithsonian's modeler(s) chose to paint the gun deck stripe an off-white, very similar in tone and hue to what we today might call "radome tan". The rigging of this model is nearly identical to the Hull Model in arrangement.
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Some sources state that about 1809, her inner spar deck (upper deck) and forecastle bulwarks may have been painted "red ochre", a common practice at the time. The Smithsonian model is painted this way. Sometime between 1812-1815 her inner spar deck and forecastle bulwarks were repainted from red ochre to green as they are today on the actual ship at Boston. The Hull Model's inner bulwarks, rails and trim are painted green as is most of the spar deck trim moldings and the pinrails. During the War of 1812 it is believed that the inner bulwarks of the gun deck, one deck below, were whitewashed to aid in visibility. Also note that the Smithsonian model's boats are all individually colored. This is consistent with period practice in order to help identify individual boats at a distance at sea.

Various sources state that when originally built her hull was not painted black, just tarred, and that she had no white gun deck stripe or any gun deck stripe at all. The contemporary artist Michel Felice Corné was commissioned at the time to paint Constitution at Tripoli as the ship appeared eight years before the War of 1812. Note the different coloration and that the ship's name does appear on the transom.
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Michel Felice Corné  Constitution during the Tripoli campaign.jpg
Michel Felice Corné Constitution during the Tripoli campaign.jpg [ 81.62 KiB | Viewed 7229 times ]

Compare the 1804 Corné painting to this superb model in the possession of the US Naval Academy Museum.
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Some sources state that Constitution as built had a red stripe and blue stripe painted on one strake each immediately above the gun deck gun ports.

Sometime shortly before 1809 her hull was painted black and she received a white or yellow ochre gun deck stripe painted on the four strakes between the gun deck gun ports achieving her now familiar black hull with white stripe appearance. Her gun deck stripe was alternately white and yellow ochre throughout the War of 1812. Constitution acted as a raider during that war. Her log and other documents state that her crew changed her coloring from time to time partly as a deceptive measure to confuse her pursuers as to her actual identity.

The painting and a cropped detail of it below are also by Michel Felice Corné. The painting depicts Constitution's approach to HMS Guerriere in preparation for battle. It was commissioned as part of a set by Captain Hull. The paintings of that set were supervised by Constitution's purser Thomas Chew. The set of Corné paintings are considered to be accurate representations of the ship at the time of the battle, both in color and detail. This is because the artist had access to the ship and her crew, several members of which he interviewed. Corné personally visited the ship shortly after the battle and he took extensive notes regarding details and coloring from which he developed his paintings.

Here are some significant observations about the ship's appearance and coloring as depicted by Corné in this painting and others in the set. Note:

- no gunport lids
- black hull, beak and transom background
- yellow ochre gun deck stripe (in other paintings of the set, the forward end of the stripe is a semi-circle terminating just ahead of the forward-most gunport, aft of the anchor line hawsepipes)
- yellow ochre lower masts
- natural wood upper masts
- white beak decorations
- white gallery decorations
- red gallery window frames
- pale green ship's boats, which may be the same green color applied to the inner bulwarks
- white and yellow/gold colors of the transom decorations
- red transom window frames

Also note that, like the Hull Model, the name "CONSTITUTION" does not appear on the transom.

The coloring of her masts and yards also changed a bit during these early years. In all of the Corné paintings, the lower masts are painted yellow ochre, not white as they are today. It is difficult to make out the color of the yards but several, if not all, appear very dark, possibly black, a common practice at the time.


Attachments:
Michel Felice Corné 1812 Constitution vs Guerriere - commissioned by captain Hull and supervised by his purser Thomas Chew.d.JPG
Michel Felice Corné 1812 Constitution vs Guerriere - commissioned by captain Hull and supervised by his purser Thomas Chew.d.JPG [ 72.28 KiB | Viewed 7229 times ]
Michel Felice Corné 1812 Constitution vs Guerriere - commissioned by captain Hull and supervised by his purser Thomas Chew.a.JPG
Michel Felice Corné 1812 Constitution vs Guerriere - commissioned by captain Hull and supervised by his purser Thomas Chew.a.JPG [ 80.4 KiB | Viewed 7229 times ]

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Last edited by Anonymous on Mon Jul 02, 2007 10:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 03, 2006 2:52 am 
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Thanks a LOT Steve!!!! one couldn't wish more help than this I guess!

I have the Revell model as an order from someone else (the customer for the Victory model too).

Once again thanks for all the help, it should certainly work out fine now.

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Roel

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 03, 2006 1:36 pm 
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The "Ships" group over on the FineScale Modeler has had some extensive discussions on the Constitution and how her appearance has changed over the years. (For some reason, the ships forum at FSM has become the gathering place for builders of plastic sailing ship models.)

Having said that, I think Steve Larsen's post was spot on-- he gave a great summary of many of th emain points discussed at greater length over on FSM.

One resource worth checking out: CDR Ty Martin's book, "A Most Fortunate Ship". CDR Martin was the Constitution's CO during her overhaul and trip under sail int eh late 1990s. He has doen extensive research in primary documents, and pulled together a tremendous amount of material on the ship's history, including her changes in appearance over the years.

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2006 6:31 am 
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Hello Steve,
Did the Constitution have a copper coloured hull back then? I noticed she now has the "regular" dark red anti-fouling paint? Or is it just a boot topping? And if she was copper plated, did she carry a boot topping then?

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Roel

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2006 9:05 am 
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Hello Roel!

She was coppered, no boot topping.

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Catalogs of over 1900 designs for scale modelers:
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2006 10:48 am 
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This thread was too good to leave in main and possibly use.

Here are some other links:

USSConstitution.Navy.mil
USSConstitutionMuseum.org
USS Constitution - The History

She's one of two sailing ships I want to build (Cutty Sark is the other)

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2006 1:14 pm 
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I agree Tracy, I was thinking the same thing this morning but didn't want to bother Steve in rewriting that reply if I posted the same topic again in the "Calling all" forum. I already had trouble finding it back to check the colour pictures again!

Thanks Steve, I'll go forward in painting this baby then. Unfortunately I'm a bit slowed down by a colour I don't have in my posession!
I also found some mistakes on the Revell model too, I think the bow is completely different from the real one! Also the white line doesn't really attach to the bow in the correct way...

Thanks for all the help!
Roel

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 10, 2006 5:32 pm 
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Tracy White wrote:
She's one of two sailing ships I want to build (Cutty Sark is the other)


That's funny, 'cause I was just saying exactly the same thing to somebody! I don't much go for sailing ships, but I like Clipper Ships and Constitution :thumbs_up_1:

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2006 4:31 am 
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Hello Everyone,
Here's a view of my extremely messy workbench!

USS Constitution is now the priority ship, soon to be completed. If you look well you can also see a Dzeyran hovercraft, Sovremenny destroyer and Slava cruiser around.

The USS Constitution isn't worth a dollar and should be given to very experienced modellers with the aim of presenting them a challenge.
I have had to cut about every part on this ship to match them.

For example, as you can see on the top view, the masts are facing a totally wrong direction due to the small pins in the bottom to fit in the deck. I'll have to cut these off to let the mast face forward.

All the small cannons on the main deck have small pins on their bottoms too, to match the wooden supports. Funnily none of these pins fits into the holes in the wooden supports, so again cutting all of them off and just stick the cannon to the support (with of course the associated trouble of having them with the right side up and more or less straight.

Apart from that there are numerious flaws in the parts, not to mention that it isn't really a model of an existing ship but rather a "sailing ship" without a match in reality. Therefore it is also my aim to make it look nice rather than to represent the real ship. The customer for whom I'm building it isn't really demanding and likes good looking ships. He doesn't really care if this is a super detailed Constitution or something that looks like Connie.

Anyhow finished my rant, here's the pics:

Image

Image

Image

Image

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Roel

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2006 6:29 am 
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Roel,
What scale is that? I am getting ready to start my 1/96 Constitution. I hope that I do not have any of the same problems. Your build looks good. I will post some pics when I get started.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2006 1:23 pm 
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That's the 1/196 Connie, right? Glad I decided to go with the 1/96 version instead :)

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2006 7:06 pm 
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I've done her sistership, the USS United States this summer, also from a Revell kit. Even if it was listed as 1:150, it was a 1:216 in fact.
You can see a number of her photos at
http://model.worldwar2ships.info/uss_united_states

I built her in 3 weeks straight out of the box, with only replacement being handmade ratlines. I also simplified her rigging a bit, just wanted her to look right.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2006 7:13 pm 
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Roel , Your bench is worse than mine, nice build , looking forward to more, ARH :jump_1: :jump_1: :woo_hoo: :wave_1: :thumbs_up_1: :heh: :heh: :heh: :heh: :heh: :heh: :heh: :heh:

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 24, 2006 10:43 pm 
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Looks like mine at times.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 1:50 pm 
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It's 1/146 I checked the box. I don't know what it is in reality though, i'm not that interested in sailing ships apart from their nice appearance.

Currently I've all together been working for roughly 3 or 4 days on this one. No special add-ons will be done. It's getting forward pretty well, except for the bad and missing parts. She's on the workbench for a lot longer than those 3 days though, she's there for a couple of months now.
Anyway once she's finished I'll be able to clean things up a bit. Somehow I still don't feel ready to get that Slava and Sovremenny finished though!!!

Ron, maybe that's because you have more space and only one ship? (a big one in that though :big_grin: ). I kinda like to work messy, if you mess around with the paint or cut in the desk, it's not that hard. It wasn't clean so it's no disaster if there's any drop of paint more or less on it.
Could help to get things apart from each other though, I'm seeing a disaster coming, there's a PE 1/700 Krivak mast there and a Sovremenny one and an Orekh illuminator too, so I'll have to be careful with cleaning up things!!!

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 5:03 pm 
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Now THAT'S a workbench!! I would believe that a modeler was actually building models there. All these shots of pristene looking workbenches makes me want to wretch!! :mad_2:

Just kidding. You ought to see mine. Talk about a mess.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 5:37 pm 
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Clean workbench, sick mind. :woo_hoo:

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 26, 2006 3:01 am 
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les wrote:
Clean workbench, sick mind. :woo_hoo:

Well, once in 2-3 weeks I cleanup my workbench, as I simply get a few dozens of color bottles, paint brushes, sprue trees, frets etc cluttering the table to the extent that I have no place for the models! ;o)

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 26, 2006 1:02 pm 
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Heck, you guys are lucky to have a work bench to clean up or not. My work area is the kitchen table, so when I am finished it gets cleaned. Now that is a real pain in the you know what. One of these days when I retire an extra bedroom may be turned into my work area. Until then, pass the butter,.... er glue please. :smallsmile:


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 26, 2006 1:05 pm 
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Yup, kitchen table builder here too. It all has to be cleaned up by suppertime.

More Hull Model photos taken by Steve Hawley and used here with his permission.


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Hull Model new32.JPG
Hull Model new32.JPG [ 68.36 KiB | Viewed 7240 times ]

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Catalogs of over 1900 designs for scale modelers:
3D-printed gray resin (best material!) - https://www.model-monkey.com/
3D-printed Shapeways' white acrylic - https://modelmonkey.wixsite.com/modelmonkey
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