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Old 02-11-2018, 03:38 PM
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Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...

Triva (trivial?) background:


I remember seeing the old windmills on Long Island, NY. They were grand old artifacts of a time gone by, oft neglected by a society too enamored with electrical motivation to appreciate the value of ambient energy sources (Funny how times change and old ideas come back around...)

In a time period where everything is driven by plug or battery, it may be hard to recall the period where the resource of wind and water were main-stays...not "alternate energy." The Romans used hydropower mills to feed the masses their bread and the Dutch harnesses the free and present wind to mechanize their production of grain, sometimes having shops in the lower portion of the mill to sell bags of product.

Hence, back to Long Island.

New York was first settled by the European empire of the Dutch, buying the land from the natives in a series of poorly planned and thought out contracts. "New Amsterdam" was bought initially from some tribes of roving natives, who had no claims to the lands, requiring repurchase from the actual residents! The cheated Dutch never recovered the traded items to the native opportunists (tools, glass, etc,) and the experience unfairly led to negative generalizations about "indians" in general and equally unfair resentments toward natives.

Noting the strong winds and flat ground on the massive sand bar that would later be called Long Island, the Dutch began distributing windmills across the fertile land. Long Island has been noted for having very robust soil; resulting in crops of very sweet corn, rich, thick-skinned potatoes, and most recently, prized vineyards. The water on Long Island has been noted for its value in baking too, producing the famous hard roll that is difficult to describe to someone not familiar with it, and the baked goods that are difficult to reproduce elsewhere.

Windmills on Long Island were used by the Dutch, and then the English after, to support the strong grain industry that fed a great deal of New England, until transportation improvements made large mills along riverfront capable of more economically satisfying results. It was cheaper to ship larger farmland product over greater distances and the local, Long Island grain fields could not economically compete. These structures were used up into the nineteenth century, until the growing of potatoes on the island became more profitable than grain.

The Dutch design had persisted during those years, even with the shifting of the Dutch, English, and Colonial independence. The efficient Long Island Windmills were often shorter than their European counterparts (often only four to five stories), squatter in appearance, and with wider sails (the framework fins that are turned by the wind). The type of windmill most common on Long Island was the Smock mill, named as such because their shape resembled the smocks that farmers often wore in times past, when working in the fields.

They were expensive and sophisticated machines of their day and represented a long era in farming and industry. With the period of grain farming passing on Long Island, these massive, strong structures lost their initial purpose and they began to be dismantled for wood, destroyed in fires or storms, or neglected; coming to look like large wooden ghosts of a former age. A few remained as storage, barns, and even electrical generators, as well as observation towers. The storm of '38 wiped out a large number of them and by recent times, very few still existed.

I have to confess that I have always tinkered with the idea of having or building one. A friend and I calculated the power of the energy that might be garnered by generating electricity from the movement of the sails, and were surprised at the potential. The energy production would equal the expense of building, but it would have been fun to try it. The initial cost of the construction, and having a place to build it, has always prohibited my vision of making one into an office.

A note about the design of these smock mills should be added before moving onto the model. These structures were designed to pull rotation out of the wind turning the sails and the head, atop the mill, would rotate the sails about the lower body to better position the wind grabbing arms into the most effective position. Behind the main head of the structure a smaller sail complex was often rigged to guide the positioning of the sails into the most effective posture to maximize wind rotation.

The framework sails warmed more efficient with sail cloth across the frames, catching the wind and turning the single. Some of these had long arms off the back, that guided the moving-rotating head around, using a wheel or track to manage the head of the mill's rotation.

Most of the mills were clapboard or shingle sided, but for function more than appearance. They quickly weathered gray and attracted the attention of model building misanthropes and Don Quixote types; a pair of groups sometimes indistinguishable from each other...
Attached Thumbnails
Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-sketch-old-smock-mill.jpg  
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Old 02-11-2018, 03:50 PM
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Choosing the kit...

Choosing the kit...

I wanted to find a Long Island Smock Mill but they are not common. I did find a rustic looking mill but the link was bad and I couldn't find it elsewhere.


pic 1

It would have been too large but the veins, or sails, were interesting and I thought to modify it.



Fiddler's Green had a nice version that would have been easy to modify, but it is not yet available, so I'll keep an eye out for when it is:


pic 2


They also had a simple one, round towered, which was too different and the graphics a bit too cartoonish for me & wouldn't satisfy the version I sought:


pic 3


The third one they had was actually a smock mill, though a bit too tall and more in line with later nineteenth century British-Colonial versions than I wanted.


pic 4


I settled upon this one, figuring to do a test build for a heavily modified one later or until I found the one I was really wanting.
Attached Thumbnails
Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-17th-century-netherlands-windmill-paper-model.jpg   Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-windmill-nantucket.jpg   Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-grist-mill.jpg   Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-cardmodel-smock-wind-mill.jpg  
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Old 02-11-2018, 03:57 PM
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The Kit:

What you start with:



The kit consists of two pages; one with the base and body and the other page the rest of the parts.

I noticed in my preplanning that the sails are one sided, which would leave the back an unsightly white, so I decided that it best to mirror the second page to accomplish providing backs to the sails and a few other parts. I printed off a few copies of each of the pages (the two with the kit and the extra mirrored page I prepared) for some personal construction plans that I considered worth attempting.


I printed the kit on 100b sheets. Because of some optional modifications I thought about making, I printed several sheets more of the kit on regular paper, in color.


If you are interested in the kit, go to the Fiddler's Green Model site. Look under the Industrial heading, near the bottom of the page (Smockmill):

https://www.fiddlersgreen.net/shop/c.../Industry.html
Attached Thumbnails
Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-smock-mill-pages-1.jpg   Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-smock-mill-pages-mirroed.jpg  
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Old 02-11-2018, 04:12 PM
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Looking forward to this.
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Old 02-11-2018, 04:18 PM
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Starting the sails

The sails are four pieces with the vein bracketing and the simulated canvass drawn across the framework as one two dimensional piece. I cut these out with a hobby knife.

Once cut, coloration issues with the kit are observable, as this was an early kit. My understanding is the computer graphics used to color it were too awkward to avoid these mistakes.

Also I noted that the removal of the kit part from the page produced a number of white spots that could be addressed.
Attached Thumbnails
Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-sails-page-.jpg   Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-sails-page-coloration-issues.jpg   Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-sail-cut-out.jpg   Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-sail-color-issues.jpg  
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Old 02-11-2018, 04:34 PM
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Exclamation Optional build choices

OPTIONAL!

Off Instructions work:



The next described steps are not required or suggested by the build. I'll make a point of noting where I divert to optional build techniques and later rate whether they were worth the effort.



My first alteration came with using colored pencils and permanent markers to touch up coloration issues to avoid what I saw as unsightly flaws. The pencils permitted better color mixing but were not always cooperative with the texture of the paper and ink. When those factors blocked the addition of color correction, I used the markers as lightly as I could. Markers have a tendency to bleed deeper and farther into the kit that wanted if you are not careful. Also, the markers were not as conducive to matching the color as the more varied pencils set. The process requires preplanning. I recommend lightly brushing with the marker top, not leaning into it like a pencil.



Of course I could have color-corrected with the computer but that wouldn't have handled the white-edge and flaking that occurs when cutting out the piece from the paper.



The touch ups were time consuming but worth the effort.
Attached Thumbnails
Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-beginning-touch-up.jpg   Tilting At Windmills; With or without the smock...-touched-up-color-sail.jpg  
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Old 02-12-2018, 03:07 PM
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Hello THE DC. It's probably too late now but I wondered if you checked out Leon Schuijt's website before deciding which mill to make:

Molens, leon Schuijt Bouwplaten

My other half made De Palmboom from this publisher some years ago. It drove her mad but it ended up a very impressive model.

I'll follow your build with interest.
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Old 02-12-2018, 05:37 PM
Maltedfalcon Maltedfalcon is offline
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e-cardmodels has the Beebe Windmill.

https://www.ecardmodels.com/index.ph...per-model.html
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Old 02-12-2018, 08:19 PM
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Regards

Quote:
Originally Posted by Philip View Post
Hello THE DC. It's probably too late now but I wondered if you checked out Leon Schuijt's website before deciding which mill to make:

Molens, leon Schuijt Bouwplaten

My other half made De Palmboom from this publisher some years ago. It drove her mad but it ended up a very impressive model.

I'll follow your build with interest.



Great site! Thanks for sharing.

I don't see the smock mill design found on LI, but there are some great examples of other styes.

I might be able to cobble one together from different kit though?


Thanks and will keep posting.
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Old 02-12-2018, 08:21 PM
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Wow!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maltedfalcon View Post
e-cardmodels has the Beebe Windmill.

https://www.ecardmodels.com/index.ph...per-model.html


Wow!


Right on target! Wish I'd seen that before starting this one.


I'll keep posting on this one and light squirrel up an order for this one soon.


Good catch!
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