Tuesday, 28 February 2012

On the skids

Having felt like I've done lots of work but with no progress to show, the last week has seen the stern/transom come on leaps and bounds.  Well at least I think so.

The prop shafts, rudder posts and bilge keels are now all on the hull together with the bilge keel extensions and supports.  I'm really pleased with the results;

The transon supports are 3.2mm styrene tube with a 1.6mm brss rod inside for which a locating hole was drilled into the keel extentions.  The top of the supports are also pinned into the transom with 1mm brass rod.  The bolts support mounting plates also act as pins into the transom.  It's probably overkill but it makes me feel better!

I've also modified the keel extention by adding a rounded profile to the end of the keel (not the 'hockey stick').  It's not quite the right profile but I ok with it and it's better than just the square end.

I also got around to fixing the motor mounts.  Due to the angle of the prop shafts, there's not much room to fit a mounting so I had to cut down the fixing bolts.  Being lazy instead of using a saw, I used a cutting disc (or rather several!).  The metal motor mounts themselves are bolted to pieces of thin plywood epoxyed into place with balsa wedges underneath to give the correct motor angle.

The figures are now painted in their main colours - yellow for the drysuits and white for the helmets.  Detailed painting to do next...

Friday, 17 February 2012

Go Figure

I was hoping to be much further on with the drive train and hull work by now but due to being a little heavy handed I had a set back.  More on that below.

However, it gave me chance to finally get cracking on some crew figures for the Trent.  They are from Speedline Models and really pretty good.  The photo shows the figures assembled (ie with arms attached) and the heads kept separate for ease of painting.  All that was required was a little filing of the mould lines, a little filling at the arm joint and an adjustment to the Coxwain's left hand so that it was at the right angle to hold the wheel.  I simply cut the hand off at the jacket sleeve, trimmed his wrist to the appropriate angle and superglued back in place.

I also dug out copies of a feature by Kim Belcher in Marine Modelling on detailing the 1:12 versions of these figures.  He really went to town and I felt much was probably beyond me, like reshaping the helmets.  I did though have a go at adding the jacket bottoms and pockets from .0.010" plastic card and I think it looks ok.  We'll see after the yellow paint goes on!

This photo show the crew figures primered and with some pre-shading in the clothing creases.  Not sure it will show through the Halfords spray paint but it might!  Looking carefully at the hull, I have tacked the prop shafts in place with superglue.  These have been measure once but before epoxying them in place I will check and check again.  The delay I mentioned came because I like to paint the prop shafts before fitting.  With the keel and bilge keels in place it will be difficult to spray paint the tops of the shafts once in place.  It might not be necessary but better safe than sorry and it worked on the Trent.  However, after the first paint job, my test fitting of the shafts led to a fair number of chips to the paint.  Nothing for it but a sand down and respray.

I'm hoping to get the shafts epoxyed in place and the hull filled and sanded flush around them this weekend.  I might even get the rudders fitted as well!