Doug's battleship Bismarck

           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.

         To have two club members find out by chance that they are building the same model kit and then work to complete them at the same time, must be unusual. That was the case for Paul and Dean building their models of a Flower-class corvette. The ships were known as such because those built for the Royal Navy were named after flowers. The Royal Canadian Navy chose to name them after Canadian towns.


         Paul built his model of the HMCS La Malbaie as a tribute to his father-in-law, Lieutenant-Commander Charles Edmonds (Chuck), who served on her from 1941 until 1944 out of Halifax and St. John’s.
          The La Malbaie measured 205 ft in length and 33 ft in beam. She was crewed initially by 45 seamen but this rose to 90 as more equipment and jobs were added during the war. She was successful in protecting many merchant marine vessels as they delivered goods and supplies to Great Britain from North America.
          In 2005 Chuck passed away and his sons and daughters, as a thank you to Paul for his participation in his care, provided him the funds to purchase the kit. The original kit was made by Matchbox in 1979 and included over 1200 parts. Paul bought one, previously owned but not opened, from a gentleman in Halifax. He started in on the build putting the hull together and adding a radio-controlled motor along with electronic speed controller, rudder, servo and receiver.
          Paul then ran into big issues with painting the model. At 1/72 scale things are really small and paint applied with a brush can only be described as globs. He didn’t like it at all so put the kit aside for three or four years while he studied painting. He looked into airbrushing and asked all and sundry about how it all works. He bought an airbrush and taught himself to use it (eventually) and got the kit off the shelf once again. In the meantime, Matchbox sold their plastic kit division to Revell and Revell reissued the kit in a Platinum version that came with photo-etched parts, wooden parts and brass pieces too. He managed to get this kit from one of the members of a neighbouring model boat club when he found the thought of building it daunting. That gave Paul spare parts for the ones he messed up, extra figures to staff the deck and then all that beautiful wood, and the finely crafted photo-etched parts.
          Another two winters and the model was complete. Then he realized that most damage to model boats is caused by moving the boat from one place to another so he built a storage box complete with the camouflage paint.

          Dean found his model kit while browsing in a model store and was immediately attracted to it, especially since he had a couple of friends who had served in them.
          He started building it and planned to have it as a static model, for which the kit was intended. Before he'd gone very far he joined the club and was influenced to turn it into a radio-controlled sailing model. Dean says he found the kit to be an easy build although some of the parts were not a good fit and needed some rework. Help was always available in the club when he had a question. The only things he added were metal stanchions to replace the plastic ones that were supplied with the kit.
          Painting of the big parts, including the hull, was done with an airbrush, and the small parts by hand. He went on line to get the paint scheme for the vessel that the model finally represented, HMCS Brantford.
          The 7.2V NiMH battery, motor and ESC were all purchased from Skycraft. Before the superstructure was fitted Dean made up a battery compartment to ensure the battery could not move. Lead shot was used for ballast. The radio is a pistol-grip Spektrum DX3 but Dean plans to change to a stick-type Spektrum DX6.
           The model sails well and looks good on the water.

Footnote:

HMCS La Malbaie was built by Midland Industries in Sorel-Tracy, Quebec, commissioned on 28 April 1942, and paid off on 28 June 1945.

HMCS Brantford was built by Midland Shipyards in Midland, Ontario, commissioned on 15th May 1942 and paid off on 17th August 1945. She was converted in 1950 into the whale catcher, Olympic Arrow.

Member's models - Flower class corvettes by Paul and Dean.

Click on pictures to enlarge

Member's models - Frank's USS Crockett

Click on pictures to enlarge

RC MILITARY SHIPS

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

Confederation Marine Modellers

          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.

          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.