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  1. Hello all! I have decided to have a bash at another scratch build, this time of an early steamship which was also fully rigged as a topsail schooner (it says so in the book!). I have to admit that I am not sure of the scale. She was 241.3ft in length and 30.7ft in breadth, with a depth of 25.6ft. The plans do not give a scale, but she is 9 7/8th inches long on the plan from bow to stern, and 9 9/16th inches long from bow to rudder post, and finally 1 1/16th inch from the top of the gunwhale to the bottom of the keel. The Knight Templar was built by JG Lawrie, Glasgow for Baird and Brown, Glasgow. Launched on the 6th September 1872, she had a very short service life, as she was lost on a voyage to India on the 3rd February 1873. The Knight Templar had a relatively long, slim hull and low skylights and boiler casing on deck. This combination caused problems with early steamships in bad weather. The plan has come from 'British Ocean Tramps Vol1 - Builders and Cargoes' by PN Thomas along with the potted history mentioned above. She also has a page on the Clydeships website, but sadly no photographs. On a previous build I had access to a brilliant website www.photoship.co.uk but that seems to have gone now, and I have been unable to locate any images at all. This will mean some artistic licence as regards fittings and colours, but I will do my best to make it as close to reality as I can. At the moment I have not cut any plastic, but have it all in stock. I will show a 'parts list' soon, but meanwhile, here is the plan: I want to try some new techniques on this model, and will attempt at least a hint of planning the sequence to the build. The main thing I want to learn though is soldering for the masts as I had an awkward time on my previous scratchbuild when it came to fitting booms to masts, and this one has booms and yardarms. Oh yes, and how to make the sails too! Despite having dropped in terms like 'booms', 'yardarms', 'keel' and 'bow' I am a bit of a landlubber and have been known to make the odd boo-boo when it comes to ships, so please, if you see me doing anything like that as this progresses, let me know! Hopefully I have remembered some of the guidance I was given previously. I will add more soon! All the best, Ray
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