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Molded lines in Revell 1/96 USS Constitution

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  • Member since
    June 2009
  • From: Cedarville, AR
Molded lines in Revell 1/96 USS Constitution
Posted by redshft1920 on Friday, October 7, 2016 4:25 PM

I'm trying my 4th attempt at a 1/96 tall ship, the well-known Revell USS Constitution. I am so sorry to see that Revell has decided to go with molded ratlines (the climbing lines to reach each sail level) instead of the original thin fragile lines in every other ship I've built in the last 45-50 years. What were they thinking?

If you consider the scale, and the 20 figures included, these molded lines are roughly equal to the size of a crewman's LEG! Not the proper scaled original lines. The originals were a real pain to work with, but they matched the scale! Had I realized this I would have never bought another current Revell sailing ship, I'd have either sought a older kit from someone who had it for sale or I'd have sought another maker.

A VERY disappointed customer

Can anyone recommend any where I can find the proper lines? Does anyone sell what I need?

Bob Moody in Cedarville AR

  • Member since
    November 2003
  • From: Naples, FL
Posted by tempestjohnny on Friday, October 7, 2016 7:00 PM
Try posting this in the ship thread you might get a better response

 

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Friday, October 7, 2016 10:10 PM

If you are looking for the old dipped ratlines, don't bother.

A good solution is to rig the vertical ropes; the shrouds by hand.

Then if you are game, try tying the ratlines.

Or not, but a better looking solution than the crud Revell has sold over time.

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    July 2013
Posted by steve5 on Friday, October 7, 2016 10:12 PM

gmorrison is right , it really isn't that hard just time comsuming .

 

  • Member since
    May 2003
  • From: Greenville, NC
Posted by jtilley on Friday, October 7, 2016 11:55 PM

I agree with the last two posts. From the standpoint of scale appearance, those plastic-coated thread concoctions were awful. For several reasons. As noted above, they were a pain to rig properly. The shrouds (the vertical lines) and the ratlines (the horizontal ones) were not scaled properly; made from the same size thread. In a real ship, the shrouds are big fat ropes (though not quite as thick as a man's leg) and the ratlines are about half an inch in diameter. (The shrouds hold the masts vertical, and transfer the force created by the wind in the sails to the hull of the ship, to pull the ship through the water. A ratline just has to support the weight of a man.) The preformed shrouds are way to small, and the ratlines are too big. And those...things...just don't look right at the top. In a real ship every shroud goes around the masthead; the big pile of loops at the bottom of the masthead is really conspicuous.

Personally, I wish the "preformed ratlines" had never been invented. Airfix used to include such things in its sailing ships too. I think the Revell Constitution may have been the last kit from any manufacturer to use them. If Revell has quit making them - good riddance.

Youth, talent, hard work, and enthusiasm are no match for old age and treachery.

  • Member since
    June 2014
  • From: New Braunfels , Texas
Posted by Tanker - Builder on Saturday, October 8, 2016 9:24 AM

Hi John !

 I do have to remind you and " G " of a neat tool I have used for years .The tool included in Heller's ships . I did use heavier thread than they recommended for the Shroud lines and real tiny thread for the Ratlines . It's very time comsuming . But I liked them a lot better that the premolded Revell thingies .

    In one instance I actually tried inserting very fine wire for the horizontal units . Worked okay , but thread into thread was definitely better .  T.B.

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Saturday, October 8, 2016 9:26 AM

steve5

gmorrison is right , it really isn't that hard just time comsuming .

 

The first few sets are indeed time consuming.  But when you get about two sets (one mast) done, your fingers learn the technique and the remaining sets go much faster.

Unfortunately, sailing ship models take so long that I get out of practice between models, so each time I start to rig the standing rigging, my hands need to be retrained.  Unlike some of my friends on the ships forum, I cheat on ratlines and use a simple overhand knot.  These friends tell me the correct knot doesn't take that much longer to train, but I have never taken the time to learn the right knot.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, October 8, 2016 11:05 AM

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    June 2009
  • From: Cedarville, AR
Posted by redshft1920 on Saturday, October 8, 2016 4:27 PM

Good information, difficult decisions, and sad news. Looking at the box, the finished molded lines on the reference pictures around the box just make me sick. Oh, well...as I said, decision time.

I think I've seen a pattern or jig for creating the ratlines either in a manufacturer catalog or in some ad. If this is what is described above as a "tool" from Heller, can you direct me to such a device? Anyone know anything about this jig? For all I know I may have dreamed it, but such a jig-type device might save a good bit of time as well as to create a much better and consistant looking finished set of lines.

I've yet to completely a completely finished tall ship model. My first Cutty Sark was almost complete when I left OK City to move back home during the slow jobs time of 1978 to 1982 (I think). I left it with a neighbor from my apartments and when I showed up to bring home the reminder of my stuff, I found it in tatters. More than 300 hours down the tubes and I had perhaps 25-35 hours remaining till completetion. I've never attained that same amount of effort in either of my other two rigged ships. Since I'm disabled now and have lots of time on my hands I think I'll finish this one. I just want to avoid the look of the box pictures and I might take on the challenge of building lines for a closer accuracy in scale.

Thanks for all the replies thus far. I'll still hope someone might have an easier solution or other suggestions. Keep 'em comin' y'all!  I am DETERMINED to finish this one!

Bob

Bob Moody in Cedarville AR

  • Member since
    May 2003
  • From: Greenville, NC
Posted by jtilley on Saturday, October 8, 2016 4:39 PM

Well, there is a "loom" or "jig" supposedly for rigging shrouds and ratlines. Examples come with Airfix and Heller sailing ship kits. I know of a few modelers who like those jigs and have gotten satisfactory results from them. Personally, I hate them. And I think they're unnecessary.

If you do a Forum Search on "ratlines" you'll get lots of links that will show how various people have done the job. If you're a newcomer, you might consider the "needle through the shroud" trick.

There's just no way to rig ratlines that's not time-consuming and challenging. Rigging ratlines does have a learning curve, though. I've said this many times in this Forum: the first ratline you rig may take fifteen minutes. But by the time you get to the masthead you'll be rigging one per minute - and wondering what all the fuss over ratlines is about.

Good luck.

Youth, talent, hard work, and enthusiasm are no match for old age and treachery.

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, October 8, 2016 7:19 PM

I do not recommend that loom thing. If TB has had success, I would like to know the secret.

It just defies the whole physics of the thing. Large tight lines in one direction and slack in the other. Then removed, somehow installed, seized around the dead eyes at the bottom and looped around the mast at the top. All nice and tight up and down and slack across, the ratlines all lined up. It just can't be done. 

Hours spent, pop it off the loom, ball of thread. We'll hear you from here. Useless piece of  dung unless you are TB.

End of rant.

When the time comes to start your standing rigging, install the shrouds. Then see how you feel about the ratlines. You may very well decide to leave the ship that way.

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    July 2013
Posted by steve5 on Saturday, October 8, 2016 7:32 PM

bob

this is an easy tutorial on how to tie rat lines .https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yMmGFWJhi8E

 

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Saturday, October 8, 2016 9:10 PM

David is a real craftsman

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    June 2009
  • From: Cedarville, AR
Posted by redshft1920 on Saturday, October 8, 2016 9:40 PM

WOW!  nearly perfect and appears to be easily repeatable clove hitch knots...THANK YOU for this video. Now I can rig my own ratlines that will be much closer to scale than the darned old molded crap. Another video I found close by was of a skilled craftsman working on deadeyes on what looked to be either HMS Victory or maybe a Mary Rose? Whichever it was, it is quite impressive although the camera recorded only the right hindquarter of the vessel. GREAT videos that will help me in my build. Happy, happy, happy!

Bob Moody in Cedarville AR

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