Sunday, February 27, 2011

1/300 Patrol Boat Project: Part 3

The Northern Chalupistan patrol boat Yuzz on its shakedown cruise:

Sorry about the black & white shots, but the background was horrible looking and I couldn't fix it.

Here is a front view shot:

Rear view:

Here's what she looked like before I painted her:

To smooth over the foamcore, I wrapped the ships hull and superstructure with construction paper. The searchlight about the bridge is from the tapered end of a tooth pick. The windows were cut from granny screen. They were probably way too thick. The door and the engine hatches was made out of sheet styrene. The railings were done using a jig that I built:

Its four nails. Two nails are used to set the width of the railing and the other two pull the wire taught. I used a very fine iron wire (I can't remember the gauge). The width-setting nails are about a millimeter in diameter, which seemed about right. The railing posts were made of the same wire. They were folded over and then glued with super glue. Once dried they are cut to length. You can't see it in the photo, but there are marks along the jig that indicate where to put each post.

I used parts from Scotia's neutral equipment range for the 20mm main gun and the zodiac boat, and the two machineguns were from C-in-C. The life-saver rings are copper wire that I wrapped around a nail and then cut. I sealed the gap with some Squadron Green Stuff putty.

I made one modification before I painted the ship. I didn't like the two different radar dishes, so I cut off the lower one and stuck on the plastic head of a pin. It represents an electro-optical sensor. Think of them as very high-tech telescope system. It has a range finder as well as infrared imaging.

I painted it a gray. The windows are payne's gray. You can't tell, but the zodiac is painted green.

My next project will be a river monitor. I plan to base it off of ex-Soviet river monitors.

Monday, February 21, 2011

1/300 Patrol Boat Project: How to Scale

I noticed in an earlier post that I didn't really answer a question about how I scale down the boat plans using a copier. I thought I would just post it rather than add to the running comments, which is about two weeks old.

What I do is print out the plans. I then scale them down. My boat is 30 meters long, so I am going to solve for x; x being the length of the boat at 1/300 scale.

If 1 meter = 1,000 mm, then 30 meters = 30,000 mm.

Why first convert to mm? I could have also used centimeters, but the important thing is that units must always be the same in both the numerator and the denominator. Therefore, the scale or ratio is 1 mm = 300 mm.

Now, you solve for x:

x mm/30,000 mm = 1/300

x = 1/300 x 30000 mm

x = 100 mm

So at 1/300 scale the 30 meter boat measures 100 mm or 10 cm in length.

Now, comes the reducing part. You want to reduce the drawing down to 100 mm. You measure the length of the boat in the drawing. Let's say its 15 cm long. You know you have to reduce it in size so that its length is 10 cm. You divide 10 into 15:

10/15 = 0.66

When you copy your original, go to the ZOOM menu and reduce down to 66% That should do it. It helps to have a ruler handy to make sure it is at the proper length.

I hope that helps. There are are some online scale converters to speed things up. There used to be a pretty good online calculator, but I noticed that its gone. The nice thing about this one was that you could enter any scale you want to. Others that I have seen have pre-set scales that are either for building doll houses or standard models. I wouldn't be surprised if there was some sort of app that will do it for you. Eh...its not that hard to do it on your own. Besides, its good to dust off and exercise those neuronal connection involved in algebra!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

1/300 Patrol Boat Project: Part 3

I am sort of surprised that I have time to build this boat. Nice thing about this project is that I can work on it for 15 minutes a day and get a lot done.

The next step was to build the antenna mast. The plans call for two radar antennae and a hoop radio antenna. The sides of the mast are rounded off. Initially, I cut out and laminated thin cardboard to make it:

The problem is that cardboard does not round off very well. Something I learned but forgot about from an earlier project. Instead, I used thin styrene plastic. Like everything else, I cut copies of the mast and then glued them together:

Here is the mast completed but without the radar:

Rounding the edges was a lot easier with the plastic. I used a fine grit emery board to get into the tight corners.

Finally, I added the electronics and a base, and it was finished:

The lower radar antenna was made using another thin piece of styrene. It was really tricky gluing it on. Then I found a good alternative. You know all of those little plastic wire things that hold price tags to articles of clothing? Well, they look like radar antennae. That is what I used for the upper one. I drilled a tiny hole in the mast and fitted it in. I probably should have made the lower one out of that, too, but I spent too much time gluing that one down to want to pull it off.
The loop antenna I made from some wire that I wrapped around a drill bit and then cut. The additional wire hoops will be used for life saver rings. I globed some Squadron green putty into the gap. At the time I took this picture, it was still drying. I need to go in and smooth out the putty. It is mounted on a small lollipop stick cut to size. Back in my day, lollipop sticks were made out of paper. Now, they are plastic.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Friday, February 4, 2011

1/300 Patrol Boat Project: Part 2

My next step in building the patrol boat was to build the top part of the superstructure which included the bridge. The bridge was a challenge because it flared out at an angle. I built up the superstructure by laminated pieces of cardboard. Like the hull of the boat, I glued on a template, cut out the outline of the template, then glued one layer cardboard on top of another. To cut out the bridge, I used my knuckles as a jig and rested my razor saw against against them at an angle. The picture below is the bottom of the bridge and superstructure:

Here is what it looks like flipped over:

It wasn't perfect, but good enough for government work! To give you a better idea of what is going on, here is what the superstructure looks like with the top part fitted to the bottom:

Other than gluing strips of card stock onto the bridge to represent window frames, the whole thing looks pretty crude.

For the next installment, I will build the radar mast and finish the superstructure.