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Research books for the scratch builder modeler.

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  • Member since
    December 2006
  • From: Jerome, Idaho, U.S.A.
Research books for the scratch builder modeler.
Posted by crackers on Monday, March 12, 2018 2:10 AM

Zoltan Szemake shared Yijie Wangs Facebook posting of some scratch building books on building historic sailing ships. A few I have in my librarty, which I can vouch have been very helpful for accuracy in scratch building.

Here is the list of books, which I will comment, as I do know the contents of some these books which I have in my library.

Scratch building H.M.S. SUSSEX. I think this ship sank in a storm in the Straights of Gibraltar, while carry a cargo of treasure in the late 17th century.

The french frigate LE GROS VENTRE, 1766-1779. Not sure if this the English version of this book.

The French frigate LA VENUS of 1782. Not sure if this is the English language version.

English post frigate H.M.S. Surprise.

 "Sailing ships of War, 1400-1860",by Dr Frank Howard. This book is a storehouse of illustrated information in my library.

 l A scratch builders manual for building the 38 gun, H.M.S. NAIAD of 1797.

A building manual of the early Dutch 1717 East Indianman,VALKENISSE, by  Rob Napier. The author built this model which is now in a museum.

The Greenwich hospital barge of 1832. Building instructions for those of you who prefer small sized vessels.

"Ship Modeling Simplified" by Frank Mastini. For those of you who want to scratch build from the basic instructions


"Trafalgar and the Spanish Navy", by John D. Hartman. Enough has been written about this famous navy engagement from the British viewpoint. This book gives the Spanish side of the story.

The galleon, The Great Ships of the Armarda Era, by Peter Kirsch. I have this book in my library. This book is packed full of illustrations of the galleon.

VASA, by Fred Hocker. The famous 1629 Swedish warship raised and now on display.


"Wooden Warship Construction, A history in Ship Models" , by Brian Lavery.  This author is an expert on ship from the 17th century to the 19th century.

"The Ship's Longboat, 1680-1780". Useful information on a warship's important deck furniture.



"The Anatomy of the Ship" series is an absolute must for the serious scratch built modeler. Jam packed with illustrations of deck furnature, masts spars and rigging of verious sailing ships for those who insist on accuracy.

"Ship Modeling from Stem to Stern" by Milton Roth. A illustrated book for the beginner ship scratch modeler.

Want to build a fireship ? David Antscherl has the answer in building, "The Royal Navy Fireship COMET of 1783". Usually worn out ships were preped for being set on fire and sent into anchored enemy vessels, creating panic to escape being burned.

"The Mastin and Rigging of English Ships of War, 1625-1860", by James Lees, is a must have research book with profuse illustrations of English ships of this time period.

Those wanting to avoid the big battle ship of the sail era, "Sloops of War, 1650-1763", would be the answer.

A full sized replica of L'HERMIONE was made and sailed to America last year.

This book is written in French, but it is noteworthy because this French frigate built in 1744 and captured in the Caribbean in 1747, served as a protype for later English frigate designs.

Hope this book collection can be of help for the scratch builder of the sail ship era.

Happy modeling     Crackers   SmileBeer














Anthony V. Santos


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