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Old 06-19-2016, 01:09 AM
douglasmarrel douglasmarrel is offline
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Super interesting thread.
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Old 07-17-2017, 04:09 AM
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abhovi abhovi is offline
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Perhaps the time has come to take up the story of the 160 feet East Indiaman from 1697, where I left it last year. It’s not that I didn’t do anything about it since then. I just didn’t think it was interesting enough to show.
I left the project over a year ago in June 2016 with a hull with a wrong shape as I described above. Some time later I gave it a second try after useless experimenting with filler to obtain the angle in the bilge after all. However, I had to stop building this second hull because I discovered I forgot to check the squareness of the stem and stern in relation to each other. When I finally did check they deviated almost 10 degrees and there was nothing I could do to correct that. It was a stupid beginner’s mistake, which was punished by kicking the hull into the dustbin.

Here a small pile of models: the first try without the angled bilge, an 18th century East Indiaman of 150 feet I described before and the second failure of the 160 one on top. The small fluit to the right has been finished and was reported here as ‘the Ghost ship in the Baltics’.


Beginning this year I gave it a third try. To be honest, I have my doubts about this whole project. It’s not that I don’t want to make this East Indiaman, but it is so big that I don’t know exactly what to do with it. Though I live in a fairly big house I still think models of this size take too much space. Besides of that, this project will rob me of all of my stock in ropes and other supplies (I am Dutch, so I try to keep the costs low ☺).
On the other hand, I started all this, to see the difference in various ship types and how it visually works in respect to identification. I do a lot of work for art suppliers specializing in old marine paintings, writing about what is to be seen on the paintings. Seeing models of the various vessels with their sizes in relationship to each other, helps me to identify the right types and understand their use and significance.

-img_0106.jpg -img_0110.jpg -img_0112.jpg -img_0114-kopie.jpg

So I gave it a third try.
Nothing sensational in the technical sense, just working up to the lower deck and waiting to make progress after the lower part of the hull is all settled. I can only locate the upper gun ports after I laid the upper deck. There are hardly any examples to be found for what exactly VOC ships looked like around the year 1700, but those are all worries for later, as it will help me to keep the building process interesting for me (and hopefully for you).

-img_0117.jpg -img_0118.jpg -img_0159.jpg -img_0169.jpg

What I forgot to mention in previous threads is my choice of material. I use two sorts of card. One has the sort of spongy feel of a beer-mat, in Holland it is called ‘houtbord (wood-board) and it is mainly the same as what publishers use for laser cut frames, though a little bit softer. The is is called ‘grijsbord’ here (grey board) and is just a stiff 1 mm thick sort of card. After the necessary stages I described a couple of times before and after applying filler and sanding the hull, the moment arrived that I could finally admire the angled bilge of the hull as it should be. A small victory.

Applying strips of plastic was a breeze and all looked well, although the model took a lot of paint. Then I made my next mistake. I did not wait long enough with brushing on the dark paint to get the wood-effect and instead of a soft cloth for wiping it off, I used paper towels. Never do that. The result is as horrible as is shown here.


So I waited and applied a new coat of Humbrol and did the trick with dark brown again, this time I waited patiently until the moment was there. This time I like the result, so we can move on. It may look a bit sloppy to some of you, but hey, what do you think such a ship looks like when it returns from a trip to the Far East?

-img_0281-1-.jpg -img_0283-1-.jpg
Every now and then I will be working on this model, more for the joy of it than for gaining a result. Where in a normal household to store a model of almost a meter long?
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Old 07-17-2017, 06:42 AM
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Erik Zwaan Erik Zwaan is offline
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Ab, the historical context you place your models in is very interesting. Come to think of it, I've never really understood how such a small territory like "Holland" was able to produce such a vast number of ships and play such a leading commercial role in the world of those days. At the same time the modest number of inhabitants was the weakness of the VOC and its sister company in the West Indies, the WIC. They were traders in the first place and did not have the primary goal to colonize. From a military point of view they were no strong organizations - and ultimately that's the reason why the British took over this world dominancy in the second half of the 18th century.

Your project will definetely deliver an impressive end result so do continue! Negotiate a good place for it with your wife. Help, mijn man heeft een hobby !

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Old 07-17-2017, 07:22 AM
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Don Boose Don Boose is offline
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I am glad to see that the third time seems to have been the charm. The East Indiaman looks very good.

By coincidence, I just received a copy of Charles Boxer's The Dutch Seaborne Empire: 1600-1800 (London: Hutchinson, 1965). On Thursday, I will complete my four-day graduate seminar on the strategy of the 1941-45 Pacific War and so will have the free time to read it and perhaps find an answer to your question, Erik.

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Old 07-18-2017, 06:47 AM
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Bluenoser Bluenoser is offline
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I think your efforts are worth it. This is such a great thread. We all learn so much from this, but the greatest reward of your endeavours is the re-discovering of the forgotten East Indiaman. The rest of us do not posses enough knowledge of historical Dutch ships to know if the result is reasonably authentic or not, but you do. I hope that when you finish that you produce a nice set of lines drawing for others to build one too. As for the large size of the model, perhaps just mount a shelf on the wall and display a finished hull only.
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Old 07-20-2017, 06:42 AM
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abhovi abhovi is offline
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Thank you all for your interest and support. It might take a while before this thread gets a new posting, so don't hold your breath.... Other projects are waiting for me with riddles to be solved.
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Old 07-20-2017, 11:48 PM
Holzwurm Holzwurm is offline
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I found your log and I am really fascinated from your small paper models. Normally I build ship models from timber, but I will live for the next years near Amsterdam and could not work with wood. So I thought, that it is a good idea to try it with paper and Netherlands ship types, especially from the Golden area.
I have two questions:
1. Exist an paper kit or drawings of the small vessel in the first article of this log and where I can find it?
2. I search a description how this little model was painted. It looks very realistic

Thanks for your help

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