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Constitution disaster

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  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Constitution disaster
Posted by Rick Sr on Friday, November 13, 2020 1:50 PM

While my 1/96 Connie was by all means not the best here, it was coming out nicely.

On a visit by my 10 year old grand daughter, she went to the basement with her girl friend to show her the Connie. She picked it up, and they were eyeing it, moving it around when she dropped it on the floor. Her little friend stumbled trying to catch it and fell forward, stepping on it. They were afraid they were going to be killed!

The hull was broken beyond repair, being crushed.. I had just set the masts in and was rigging the spars.

I went into a silent funk for awhile, but did have the third Connie ( I had three kits). I gave one to my son, and started the first one, the one that was stomped on.

The funk is over. Last evening I gathered all the guns, gun deck and spar deck, what ever was salvageble and started on the third hull.

The lessons learned on the first attempt have already helped. Joining the hull together, I held the two section against the lights to see any gaps where they were joining and sanded the high spots out. It was a sweet joint. I also had a problem lining up the masthead on the first, and sanded that then double clamped it, it went together nicely.

My grandaughter had been devaststed too. And she's still with us. I gave her a ten spot, then told her the least she could do was take Grampy ut fora hot fudge sundae.

I just wish I didn't have to rig all the guns back in!

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Towson MD
Posted by gregbale on Friday, November 13, 2020 2:36 PM

Kudos on making the best of one of those situations that life seems to hand us all once in a while.

Mine was a custom-detailed and fully rigged Bismarck that 'sailed' off a cabinet to its doom when someone (who should have known better) decided to move a lamp.

I didn't cry...quite...but I found myself speaking some German I didn't even realize I knew. Censored

Good luck with your 'new' build!

Greg

 George Lewis:

"Every time you correct me on my grammar I love you a little fewer."
  • Member since
    July 2013
Posted by steve5 on Friday, November 13, 2020 7:11 PM

I feel for you rick , something like that happened to arizona 1/350 . I think i was along the lines of greg , Censored .said all to myself of course .

 

  • Member since
    October 2004
  • From: Orlando, Florida
Posted by ikar01 on Friday, November 13, 2020 7:40 PM

Wasn't there a sister ship that had been captured and then destroyed by the Marines in a raid while she was in port?  I think they snuk on board and burned it.  It could make for an interesting diorama if that was the case.

  • Member since
    September 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Saturday, November 14, 2020 9:35 AM

Ikar,

You must be talking about the USS Philadelphia, which went aground near Tripoli in February, 1804. Captured by the Tripolitans, Stephen Decatur lead a small band of Sailors and Marines to burn her, which they succeeded in doing. She was not a sister of USS Constitution, being a 36-gun 18-pound Frigate. Constitution was designed to be a 44-gun 24 pound frigate. One Constitution class Frigate, USS President, went aground while trying to escape the British blockade and was captured, but she was not burned.

Bill

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, November 14, 2020 10:33 AM

"Six Frigates" by Ian Toll is a good source.

The US Navy performed very poorly against the British during the Revolution in part because they were up against the most powerful navy on the seas, but also it was nascent, poorly organized and the ships were small.

Through some super efforts of John Adams, Alexander Hamilton and others, one part of the creation of a Federal Government was commissioning six modern, capable fighting ships and their crews and officers. Some thought bigger, some thought smaller, the results worked out well.

Six yards each built a ship of their own design in respect to the specification connected with financing. And as was usual for the time, the captain to-be had a strong hand in design during construction.

As the USN was in its early stages, things such as captain and officer lists were not well established.

The first real conflict was various scrappy "quasi" engagements in the west Atlantic, but really the Barbary Pirates episode.

Good book about the foundation of the Navy.

 

Bill

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    September 2005
  • From: Groton, CT
Posted by warshipguy on Saturday, November 14, 2020 4:42 PM

Bill,

I agree; that is a great book!

Bill

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, November 14, 2020 9:45 PM

Names:

Constitution

Constellation

Chesapeake 

Congress

President

United States

Yards:

Boston

Baltimore

Gosport (now Norfolk VA)

Portsmouth NH

New York

Phillie

 

 

 

 

 

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    October 2004
  • From: Orlando, Florida
Posted by ikar01 on Saturday, November 14, 2020 11:27 PM

Thanks for the update, I sit corrected.  Being Air Force, Navy history took a back seat most of the time so some of my remembered facts were bound to be off a bit.  But at least I am building ships more these days.

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Sunday, November 15, 2020 9:52 AM

I thought your knowledge was pretty impressive.

 

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Sunday, November 15, 2020 12:22 PM

Thanks. Dad was a Navy man, signed up in 1917, got out in 1947 after WWII. Boy could he cuss! I think I repeated a lot of what he used to say when the Connie was broken.

 

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Sunday, November 15, 2020 12:26 PM

That might be a good idea...a diorama in Boston, with the hull under construction, maybe. I saved the Brody stove, all the guns and carriages, and the water and grog barrels.

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Sunday, November 15, 2020 3:04 PM

Rick Sr

That might be a good idea...a diorama in Boston, with the hull under construction, maybe. I saved the Brody stove, all the guns and carriages, and the water and grog barrels.

 

Her restoration in 1858 is well documented.

https://ussconstitutionmuseum.org/2015/05/07/maintaining-and-restoring-an-icon-update/

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Monday, November 16, 2020 7:10 AM

The hull was broken completely through,both decks are broken too. It was crushed.  The section of the hull where it is joined at the keel is intact about two inches up. Maybe a cradle with the lower hull completed and the oak framing  sticking up might be a good diorama.

Already started the last hull.

The research I have done tells me that the only time the gun ports were used were in heavy seas, so I will not use the gun ports on this build. Just need a good putty to fill in the hinge spots on the hull.

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Saturday, January 2, 2021 12:14 PM

I have the hull together, having learned from the other, this hull has gone together better. I have been filling in the hinge dimples where the Revell has the gun port hinges with putty. There are a lot of hinge dimples and it takes some time to do.

I have all of the guns and carriages from the wrecked build, so that will speed things up.

On this build, I held the hull parts up to a light, with clamps holding the parts together and marked all the areas where light showed through with white pencil, then sanded the hull halves at those spots. When no light was showing, I glued and clamped the hull together. It went together much better.

I work on it at a slow pace as two of the boys have moved back in, having lost their jobs, and we are finishing off the basement as an apartment for them. Just put in the bathroom, so working on this build as catch can.

Hope you all had a Happy and Holy Christmas, and wish you all happy modeling and a Happy Nwe Year!

Test fitting shows the Revell decks are still misaligned and will neeSadIndifferentd some work for a proper fit.

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Saturday, January 2, 2021 12:41 PM

Rick Sr. Ah ! You got this. I have faith in you.

  • Member since
    October 2004
  • From: Orlando, Florida
Posted by ikar01 on Saturday, January 2, 2021 8:21 PM

Anopther ship model suffered a similar fate.  In the remake of the Battlestar Galactica series, Cammander Adama learns that Starbuck was killed on a mission.  He's working (supposedly) on a wooden model of the Victory.  In a fit of acting grief he gets carried away and throws it against a bulkhead, destroying the kit completely.  As it turns out, the model was on loan for the episode.  Can you inagine being the one who built it?

I remember seeing a article long ago when I was in high school about a guy who hand made a large model of the Constitution.  It was an amazing piece of work to see.  He went so far as to hand turn the cannons, make stacks of individual cannon balls, iron grates, all the blocks teh wooden hand stakes the lines were tied to and so on.  After he got it all finished he decide to take it somewhere to be put on display for a while.  Slight problem, it was too big to get it out of teh basement as it was and all the yardarms and rigging had to be taken down to get it out.\

It's moments like these...

  • Member since
    December 2020
Posted by Thuntboss on Monday, January 4, 2021 12:12 PM

I had an episode of something similar in '94. I was working on the Revell Arizona and was probably 75-80% done. I had left it out to let the paint finish drying overnight and 2 of my girls, who were 3 and 5, woke up really early, saw the model and decided to "help" Daddy finish painting it {I was already done, lol}. The thing suffered a bunch of breaks, cracks and a miriad of new colors added. Total loss.     It was hard keeping a straight face watching them deny it ...... with the evidence of multiple colors of paint all over their hands, arms and face, lol.   Not really too much to do at that point. I knew they didn't mean to hurt it and just wanted to help. Would've just mad it worse to really punish them too much. 

"Do it as well as your experience and skill allow. Practice and persistence increase skill"

 

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Tuesday, January 5, 2021 10:16 AM

I see these types of disasters are more frequent than supposed. The main culprits seem to be girls, as in daughters or grand daughters,wives and cats! Thanks for the encouragements

 

I have pics in my computer in file folders. To transfer to FSM, what files(?) do you post them to?

 

The main area of misfit on the gun deck seems to be in the transom area, with port side too far forward, interferring with the galley windows and preventing an even fit. I plan on using strip styrene to correct this. It seems to have been a common problem. This willl leave a small gap where the stern and midsections meet. (Putty covers a multitude of sins) I did not address this on my other build.

The gun deck also has small gaps at the bow but that seems noncosequential.

The fit near the figure head was also off slightly, again a common problem, and the sanding and clamping solved that very well.

I am still filling in the hinge dimples for the gun port covers with putty, not intending to use the gun ports covers.

Oh...there is also a lock on the door to my work room.

 

 

  • Member since
    March 2018
  • From: Chicago suburbs
Posted by Luvspinball on Tuesday, January 5, 2021 1:56 PM

Rick Sr

Oh...there is also a lock on the door to my work room.

 

Smart move adding a lock.  The only small creatures I have to worry about are my 2 golden retrievers, who often sleep under the bench (or more accurately, ON my foot) while I am working.  they seem relatively disinterested in what I am doing, except for the ocassional hop up onto my lap.  Now that I am rigging, that has become somewhat problematic, as the flying jib often extends off the table by quite a bit.  I put pieces of brightly colored tape on the end of the flying jib and spritsail yard so I didn't poke my eye out, but the dogs don't seem to know that.

The biggest issue is their hair.  It's everywhere.  I need to vacumn my workroom at least twice a week to keep it clean.  There and under my computer desk, where they also like to sleep on my feet.

As I said at the beginning of my blog, I lost my first Constitution due to a "mishap" while it was in storage because my wife didn't want it in the house.  The current version is light years ahead my original, and my wife is truly interested this time at the craftmanship and time it takes to create something like this.  Glad she is on board this time.

Bob

 

Bob Frysztak

Luvspinball

Current builds:  Revell 1/96 USS Constitution with extensive scratch building

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Thursday, January 7, 2021 10:30 AM

It's good to see the wifey on board. My wife seems to think I'm crazy for starting a new build but is ok as long as it stays in the model shop area of the cellar. (I spill too much coffee!)

Your build is awesome! I hope this one comes out half as good as yours.

Where do you plan on displaying it?

  • Member since
    March 2018
  • From: Chicago suburbs
Posted by Luvspinball on Thursday, January 7, 2021 4:15 PM

I have a beautiful spot in the basement all picked out, which is big enough for the ship and the case I will have to build for it, lest it get covered in dog fur! 

I could also put it on the end of the bar, but I detest that idea because of people who, for some reason, insist on touching things.  I have an old Maine lobster boat on the bar now that I rebuilt for a friend who dropped it just before all this Covid non-sense started, so I have not been able to give it back to him (did send him tons of photos).  But that is a simple build compared to this.

Still debating on whether I will put the footropes now (as I rig the shrouds) or at the end (after all the other standing rigging is done).

Keep up the good work.

Bob

Bob Frysztak

Luvspinball

Current builds:  Revell 1/96 USS Constitution with extensive scratch building

  • Member since
    July 2013
Posted by steve5 on Thursday, January 7, 2021 4:20 PM

I know where your coming from bob , I once had my sister-in-law , get her hair coaght in the rigging of my 1/100 victory  , she couldn't work out why i yelled at her not to move,Bang Head

 

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Friday, January 8, 2021 6:46 AM

I'm using wire for the foot ropes. I saved some of the spars, so that will lessen the load on the new build. Will the standing rigging obstruct rigging in the foot ropes?

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Friday, January 8, 2021 8:28 AM

Did You say Cats?

  Funny that. My cat-an all Black Siamese and something Other( More Siamese than other). Sits for hours watching me work on the paper models. Occassionally cleaning a forepaw full of claws.

 She only gets P.Od when I do plastic. Then she will screw around on the bench. I don't know what it is with her and plastic!

  If I let her sniff the Box she will curl up in it if she can.Takes about ten minutes of sniffing.( she's fourteen now and I guess her sniffer doesn't work as good.) She has never interrfered with a build of paper in any way. Plastic -she likes to bat the parts around as I build them. She gets giddy when it's say a model Car or Plane engine. Guess she likes the way they spin when she bats them. 

 I decieved her on that. There is an old Diesel truck engine that I keep in a Shot Glass on the bench.When she gets too curious, out it comes. She'll play with it, then plop on top of it and go to sleep.

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Friday, January 8, 2021 8:37 AM

You Know, Besides Furry Family;

    I wonder what it is with Daughters and Models?They either ignore them completely or they do the opposite and get so enthused about what Dad or Grandpa is doing they have to break all the rules to show it to friends. Also curious little girls.

 When I told my Son, Don't touch he would actually even sit in a chair in the shop with his hands pocketed. The girls now, "Oh, what's this?" while getting their hair in the rigging.

 Ah well, Gotta love them.

  • Member since
    March 2018
  • From: Chicago suburbs
Posted by Luvspinball on Friday, January 8, 2021 11:40 PM

I also used wire for the footropes and stirrups.  I did all my rigging of the yard while off the ship.  No need to go through all that hassle on the ship.  Much easier to add all the blocks, footropes, etc. when you just clamp it in the vice (via a clothespin).  Lots more room to work, and you don't have to worry about any other ropes in the way.

Bob

Bob Frysztak

Luvspinball

Current builds:  Revell 1/96 USS Constitution with extensive scratch building

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Sunday, January 10, 2021 11:38 AM

Hear that! I do as much rigging off ship as possible. There is also less chance of knocking the build over or breaking something.

I ordered a paper model too. Never knew they existed. Just to try one out.

 

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Friday, January 22, 2021 9:41 PM

The hull is together, the gun deck has a fit problem at the stern. All three hulss I had had the same problem.

I would love to see a 1/60 scale Connie!

  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: Cape Cod, Mass
Posted by Rick Sr on Tuesday, February 2, 2021 8:35 AM

The hull is together, gun deck in place. I have the gun ports closed to eliminate the gun placement problem with the ratlines. I will leave three or four guns run out.  (for practice with a new crew.)

The guns will be placed on the gun deck only where they would show from the weather deck. (Since the gun ports will be closed) This will save a lot of rigging work on the guns too.

There was a problem in fitting the gun deck to the hull at the stern, one side being too far forward. I fixed (?) this by using thin stryrene strips as spacers, pushing the forward section back. An unexpected plus to doing that was that the transon fits much better.

I have ordered some thin planking for the decks, but will plank the gun deck only where it will show. The weather deck will be planked. The planking will be of oak.

At the moment, the gun deck is in, waiting for the thin planking to arrive, gun ports are in and gun stripe painted The transom was fitted but has to wait for the spar deck to go in before glueing to the hull. It fits much better with the gun deck adjustment.

I glued the rudder so it can not turn. I could never figure why Revell made a moveable rudder, so folks would be tempted to play with it, creating some risk.

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