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Gallery-4  The Falls of Clyde (model-3)

With the subject of this project being a waterline model, I felt a

need to make the water base at this point, one to hold the hull,

and two to see it on the water.  For this I obtained a plank of Iroko,

I had wanted Cuban Mahogany, but was informed that it is not

obtainable in Spain, so settled for the best of what was available.

As can be seen the grain is a little course and the timber some what

yellow in colour, however it was a large enough plank to make for

the base in one piece, the most important consideration, all else can

be accommodated and adjusted as we will see.  I also obtained

enough odds and ends of the same timber to make a frame for the

base, on which a glass case will stand to eventually cover the model -

with a model having this amount of fine detail a dust proof case is essential.

So with the base squired up and the frame made to fit, the hull was placed on it and a line drawn around it, so the wood could be removed for the hull to sit into the base by about half an inch.  It would not look realistic to sit the model ON the water, it needs to be IN the water to look convincing.  The carving tools were then brought into play to carve the ripples of the water.  She is at anchor in calm water with a very light breeze heading for the port quarter, thus pushing her back on her anchor chain.  The ripples on the port side and around the anchor chain, being slightly more pronounced than those on the starboard side, which will be in the shadow of the hull for the light breeze,

When this was completed I looked for a solution to fill the grain, and to make for a more pleasing warm colour - the sample shows the before and after of my endeavours.  To fill the grain, I used a a lot of talcum powder, first by sprinkling it over the carved surface, then rubbing this in with a mixture of white wood clue mixed with water, about one to four, with a little mahogany water soluble stain added for the colour.  This was worked hard into the grain of the timber, small sections at a time, so filling the pores of the timber with the fine powder.  When completed it was left over night to dry, after which it was lightly sanded to a smooth - ripple - finish.  When all was satisfactory it was given two coats of a two part yacht varnish, the second coat going on after the first had fully dried.  The finish is such that the grain now looks as though it is under the water, which of course it is, but the water finish looks to have a depth, while the grain looks to be on a level below.

With the very basic hull and the base complete, it was now time to think about the detailing of the hull, starting with the bigger stuff and working down to the smaller detail.  So working forward, I started with the Poop, and in particular the Turtle back - the curved section around the Poop.  This was formed in copper sheet, following my practice with the car fenders, as can be found on this web site.  the strip of copper is cut oversize, annealed, then the top edge crimped with round nosed players.  The bumps are then hammered flat over a hard wood pattern.  It may be necessary to anneal and crimp several times, to get the finished shape required.  This is then soft soldered to the hull moulding below and a brass ’T’  section moulding above, the stem of the ’T’ uppermost, of form the edge of the planked area of the Poop.

Sheet brass was now cut to form the base of the Poop deck, this I made in two sections, the rearmost resined to the hard wood core, the forward section made to slide in place.  With this removable it was then possible to get to the face of the Poop proper, which is set somewhat back from the break of the Poop, and there is also a forward section in front of the base of the Jigger Mast as well.  With all of this removable, detailing the underside and the deck in front of the Poop becomes less of a problem.  The detailing of the accommodation I will deal with next month.


For those looking for more information on the construction of the Falls of Clyde, I am running a ‘Log’ on the building of it the first two models on the ‘Model Ship World’ web site.

Check out < > and search for ‘Falls of Clyde’

Most of the photos will  be the same as here, but there will I hope be more insight into the actual working of the materials and building of the model.

Four photos are added at the start of each month and relevant text on the building.  It should be running for a considerable time to come, and hopefully will not repeat what I have here too much.