Monday, July 20, 2020

18th Century Longboat - Model Shipways 1:48 - Part 3

Moving right along with the longboat build, it's time to remove the inner bulkheads. These are laser cut in such a way that you just need to file off the connections at the top of the frame, and then carefully snap the remaining connection at the bottom middle. Then you can remove the bulkhead and sand the insides. It takes quite a lot of sanding actually, as the frames all need to be thinned out significantly, and the inside edges need to be faired as well. Here is a shot of the hull with the bulkheads removed and the sanding underway.

Next I added the caprails to the top edges of the hull. To make these, you trace the outline of the hull onto some thin basswood sheet to get the right curve, measure out a small distance for the other edge, cut and install. The rail is much too wide at that point, but then you sand it thinner. Note that the frames need to be thin enough not to extend beyond the inside edge of the caprail. I removed and scrapped my first rail because I had not made the frames thin enough.

Next I added the decorative friezes. These are printed on paper, sprayed with matte varnish, cut out and carefully glued in place. Then a thin wooden strip is glued along the bottom edge. You can see in this photo the waterline has been marked in pencil.

Here you can see the stern decoration, and the waterline has been painted white.

Flipping the boat over, we have another view of the decorative friezes and the painted waterline.

Next I painted the caprail and the inside of the top planks red.

Then I added the floor boards in the bottom of the boat.

Here I've added the stern and bow platforms.

After the platforms, it was time to add the thwarts, the windlass, the knees, and the eyebolts in the bottom of the boat. At this point the body of the boat is nearly finished, and next time I'll post pictures of the masts and other details.


  1. It is an honor for me to be the first to comment upon this your construction topic. Well done on this splendid build.From the evergreen gardens of Fiddle Wood UK,
    this has been BB

    1. Thanks very much Paul, I appreciate it. It's a really fun kit.

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  3. Hi Mr White, I am totaly new to model boat building, and wish I would have found your blog when I started this build. I am at this Pt 3 at the moment and I am finding it very hard to sand the inside frame and keel in such a small area. Do you have any guidance.

    1. Hi Mike, welcome to the hobby. Yes, the interior sanding is challenging, because the space is tight and the surfaces are curved. I made some simple tools for myself to help me get into those spaces. For example, I took a pen cap and cut off a section wide enough that it would only touch two frames at once, then glued sandpaper to the outside of that cylinder. Then I went from one pair of frames to the next. This helps fair them too. That sort of thing.
      It's a time consuming process, but an important one. Break it into as many sessions as you need to, so you don't drive yourself crazy.
      Also note, it's especially important that the tops of the frames, where they meet the cap rail, are thin enough. If they are too thick, you will have to make the cap rail itself wide enough to cover them, and that ends up making the whole boat look a lot beefier and clunkier than it should.
      Hope that helps. Feel free to ask anything you need to, and I'll offer advice if I am able.

  4. Thank you so much for your responce regards. I will deffinatly try that. Mike Dearman