Confederation Marine Modellers

Doug's battleship Bismarck

Steve’s Civil War monitors CSS Atlanta and USS Weehawken. 

          The C.S.S. Atlanta (pictured top right) was a Confederate States casement ironclad converted in early 1862 from the hull of a British steam blockade runner named Fingal.  The Atlanta was commissioned on November 22, 1862. Measuring 204’ long with a beam of 41’ and draft of 15’9”, she displaced 1006 tons and was manned by a crew of 145. She was armed with two 7” and two 6.4” Brooke rifled cannons.

          The U.S.S. Weehawken  (picture top left) was one of 10 Passiac Class second -generation monitors built in late 1862, after the world’s first monitor, the U.S.S. Monitor, was tested in battle against the C.S.S. Merrimac (Virginia) at Hampton Roads.
          She was built by Zeno Secor & Company, launched in November of 1862 at Jersey City, New Jersey and commissioned on January 18, 1863. Measuring 200’ long with a beam of 46’ and a draft of 10’6”, she displaced 1192 tons and was manned by a crew of 75. She was armed with one 15” and one 11” Dahlgren smooth bore cannon. 

          Doug’s newest model is the Trumpeter 1:200 plastic kit of the battleship Bismarck. It is 49½” long and weighs approx. 20lbs in sailing condition.

            The kit had 1700 pieces, and in addition Doug had the extra kit of photo-etched details, which included railings, and radar displays on the bridge, amongst others. There was also a wooden deck consisting of printed wooden veneer on a self-adhesive backing made to fit onto the plastic deck.The model is intended for static display but Doug has done a few modifications to make it a sailing model. It is powered by three 280 size motors, with propellers mounted on extra-long shafts obtained from the Prop Shop in the UK. Speed control is through a single ESC by EA Electronics and power comes from a 6V 4.5Ah SLA battery. He’s using his new 10-channel FlySky radio. The main gun turrets can be individually rotated, each one having its own servo.

           Frank's newest model is of the USS Crockett, an Asheville class gunboat which saw service in the Vietnam War. She was commissioned on 24th June 1967, transferred to reserve in July 1975 and decommissoned in 1976. She was 165 ft long, and 24' beam. Powered by two 725hp Cummins diesels and one 1370hp GE LM1500 gas turbine, she was capable of 50 knots. She was armed with one 3" and one 40mm guns, plus two twin 0.5" machine guns.
          The model is two Dumas kits, one comprising the parts to make the hull and superstructure, and the other the hardware and fittings. The model is 51" long, 5/16" to 1ft scale, or 1:39. This makes the scale speed for the model, corresponding to 50 knots, to be 11.5 km/hr. 
          Frank found this to be a learning  experience for him and he now has a greater appreciation and understanding of the skills required to build a boat of this size and detail. The instructions were very poor, consisting entirely of text with no diagrams or illustrations to help. Youtube and Bill M were able to provide more help. Frank built the hull and applied the fibreglass and Bill M. helped him with the finishing of the hull. The hull was too flexible with the 1/8 " thick ribs supplied and these were replaced with 1/4" ribs. The main deck was supplied as two halves in the same sheet of wood, so these were replaced with a single piece. The bridge front was too thin and flimsy and all of the bridge structure parts were replaced. The guns were poorly designed, so redesigned by Bill and built in a completely different way.  In addition, the railings were made from stainless  because the material provided in the kit was not strong enough.  On  the whole the kit was poorly designed and without Bill's help and guidance it would still be sitting on the work table. 
           The model is powered by two 12 motors from a 2.9 Ah gell cell battery, using a Viper speed control and an Attack 75MHz radio. The lights are powered from a AA battery pack.

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Member's models - Frank's USS Crockett

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