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Knight Templar 1872 Iron screw steamer


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Hello all.

 

It is time for a little bit more to the Knight Templar story to get written. I am going to let @Bandsaw Steve off the proverbial hook and not insist that he starts SS Xantho when I restart this one. I had mentioned in another thread that after my Endeavour build, I was going to try to finish another ship with sails, but I forgot to mention that it also had a boiler too. My apologies.

 

Now for some explanation for the delay. I had spent quite some time dealing with this scratch build, and I hit a bit of a wall. I was in the first instance unsure about the sails and the way the yards would be arranged. I had some very useful information up-thread (down-thread?), okay then, previously. I was given advice about setting the ship into a sea base and how to do that relative to the waves and wind. But there was still a problem, this time one of crew. The ship's wheel is set almost half-way along the main deck in the open, and there appears to be another 'wheel' at the aft end on my plans. I have not been able to find any 1/300 crew, so this vessel may well be missing people. In addition to that, I also needed to build three winches for the decks, and they all need to be very similar. I think I have now settled in my mind how I am going to deal with this.

 

I have given the model a bit of a clean up, and dry-fitted the deckhouses and masts. I have to admit I am still hesitant about setting it at sea with no crew, so I may re-do the masts and have it set at anchor or in dock. It will be a couple of days before I properly restart this, but here is the ship as it is at the moment:

 

DSCN8999

 

And here is the proposed sea setting (I still need to trim the board as can be seen by the drawn lines)

 

DSCN9000

 

I have plenty of photo etch for this (all at 1/350 scale but looks in keeping), the colours are speculative. The main thing I must do is remember to set the hull lower down in the water, as she was on a voyage heavily laden when lost.

 

I am looking forward to getting stuck into this again,

 

Thanks for looking. One request, if I mention that I am going to do something to this which sounds wrong, please let me know!

 

All the best,

 

Ray

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11 hours ago, Ray S said:

I have not been able to find any 1/300 crew, so this vessel may well be missing people.

Gidday Ray, have you considered carving a few? @thekz in his build thread of HMS Malaya ("The Good Old Lady's Cruel Conversion") shows some made in his first post and how he's done it in his posts dated about 26th April (late on page 1 and early page 2). Easy for me to say, I know, I haven't done it myself, but it might be another option for you. HTH. Regards, Jeff.

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7 hours ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

Excellent.

 

Nice to see this back. I’m sure we will forgive you if you use 1/350 figures on this. I think Trumpeter makes them? Someone here will know for sure.

 

 


A 1/350 six foot sailor on a 1/300 deck would be about five foot two. I’d say that is well within normal human variation. 
 

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Ray, while I know that it’s the convention in dioramas to place everything in any position apart from perpendicular or parallel, it’s also a convention in ship modelling to do the opposite. 
 

Your choice of course, I just wanted to draw your attention to the alternative conventions. 
 

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16 hours ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

Excellent.

 

Nice to see this back. I’m sure we will forgive you if you use 1/350 figures on this. I think Trumpeter makes them? Someone here will know for sure.

 

 

 

That is what I was hoping Steve. I have been having a look courtesy of Google, and found that Ion Models do a number of 1/350 resin sets of figures. They also do a 1/700 set for 18 -19th Century crew...

 

https://ionmodel.com/product/18-19th-century-deck-crew-700/

 

...and I hope they will scale them up - I will keep an eye on their website.

 

11 hours ago, ArnoldAmbrose said:

Gidday Ray, have you considered carving a few? @thekz in his build thread of HMS Malaya ("The Good Old Lady's Cruel Conversion") shows some made in his first post and how he's done it in his posts dated about 26th April (late on page 1 and early page 2). Easy for me to say, I know, I haven't done it myself, but it might be another option for you. HTH. Regards, Jeff.

 

I know I have made a 1/72 scale pike (fish!) from scratch but I think people would be beyond my limits. I know for certain that I cannot draw people, except matchstalk men! I will give the topic another look and see if I can change my mind. Thanks though Jeff, really appreciated!

 

8 hours ago, Bertie McBoatface said:


A 1/350 six foot sailor on a 1/300 deck would be about five foot two. I’d say that is well within normal human variation. 
 

 

That would be good, considering what nutrition was like back in the day Bertie!

 

8 hours ago, Bertie McBoatface said:

Ray, while I know that it’s the convention in dioramas to place everything in any position apart from perpendicular or parallel, it’s also a convention in ship modelling to do the opposite. 
 

Your choice of course, I just wanted to draw your attention to the alternative conventions. 
 

 

I am still not quite sure how I am going to set the ship. I need to think about the base material for a start, I am thinking about foam board or similar, so I can carve away a hollow to put the ship in. Ideally, I want to have it angled across the diagonal, and canted over slightly if that would be right and proper for the associated 'wind direction', so it will probably be neither perpendicular nor parallel. Unless it end up in dock, of course!

 

I had a read back through my escapades last night, and I am amazed at how many boo-boo situations I have encountered already. It has rapidly become almost a trademark for me now, but usually get through them.

 

Anyway, thanks for looking and for the comments,

 

Ray

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On 8/13/2022 at 6:07 PM, Ray S said:

I am amazed at how many boo-boo situations I have encountered already. It has rapidly become almost a trademark for me now, but usually get through them.

 

Everyone hits rocky patches on the road to a finished model but not everyone is willing to talk about them. That's your trademark Ray, the honesty not the errors.

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Cheers Bertie for those comments!

 

I was able to return to this build today, and - wait for it, wait for it - I actually made some progress!

 

Ever since @Bandsaw Steve gave me a kick up the proverbial the other month when for some strange reason he remembered that this project was becalmed, I had been looking at the deck paintwork. The model had been on my workbench ever since it was born, and had accumulated quite a bit of dust and grime. I tried cleaning it up, but the colour still looked wrong, both in itself and due to the un-removable grot, so I decided to repaint it. I used ColourCoats Teak this time, rather than a Revell Acrylic as I had before - I decided that after about 6 years, the first coat should have cured! I thinned the Teak with ColourCoats' naphtha thinners, and it brush-painted beautifully, and I am much happier with the result. In fact, I think I am going to repaint most of the deck fittings and superstructure too, and follow the scheme in the book 'British Ocean Tramps Voume 2: Owners and their Ships' showing the iron well-deck steamer Waterloo on page 23, as she was from the same era (although the book says she was built in 1979!). This will give me two advantages: a- it will give me a better finish as some of my original painting was a bit rough, and b - I will know what paints I used as I cannot remember from all those years ago!

 

DSCN9004

 

I have also added a deck to the main superstructure, and I took three goes to get that somewhere near right, it is only a rectangle too! I have to re-learn scratchbuilding... I will need to make some skylights for it too, but I will have a look at my spare etch sets for that.

 

Talking of etch, I recall when I looked back through this epic the other day that I had drilled out two holes midships to act as coaling scuttles, ready to take some 2mm rod. Well, I found my 2mm rod, tried to insert it, and it would not go! I wonder if I had used some different rod? Anyway, back to the etch I was on about. I had done a 1/350 HMS Dreadnought a few years ago, and remembered that I had some spare coal scuttles left over from that, I checked the sheet and there were two, and they fit perfectly into the holes. I also found a few things that will act as the davits forward for the the anchor-lifting process, and a few other bits and pieces which could well be useful.

 

I am still seeing if I can get some insulation board or something suitable to set the ship into as a seascape, but at least this is now back officially as an 'in progress' build.

 

That is it for now, thanks for looking, and Steve, thanks immensely for the metaphorical 'shove'!

 

Ray

Edited by Ray S
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38 minutes ago, Ray S said:

I have to re-learn scratchbuilding...

 

I don't know how old you are Ray, but at 65 I find I have to relearn everything that I don't do for three months. The secret, like that one about avoiding hangovers, is never to stop.

 

edit: for example I couldn't understand why I wasn't getting notifications about this build. Turned out I wasn't following it. D'oh!

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12 hours ago, Bertie McBoatface said:

 

I don't know how old you are Ray, but at 65 I find I have to relearn everything that I don't do for three months. The secret, like that one about avoiding hangovers, is never to stop.

 

edit: for example I couldn't understand why I wasn't getting notifications about this build. Turned out I wasn't following it. D'oh!

 

I will let you into a little secret, which is that I turned 65 in early August this year. Forgetting things has been a lifetime's hobby of mine...

 

Ray

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27 minutes ago, Ray S said:

 

I will let you into a little secret, which is that I turned 65 in early August this year. Forgetting things has been a lifetime's hobby of mine...

 

Ray

 

That surprises me Ray. I had guessed that you were middle forties from your writings.

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2 hours ago, Ray S said:

I will let you into a little secret, which is that I turned 65 in early August this year. Forgetting things has been a lifetime's hobby of mine...

Gidday, pretty much me too. Except that I turned 65 last December, and I didn't start forgetting things until, oh, at least 3 years old. 😁   Regards, Jeff (IIRC)

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Today has been a good day. I continued the re-painting, this time I have given the hatches, superstructures and masts a first coat of brushed Humbrol 26 Khaki - if it was good enough for Endeavour, it is good enough for Knight Templar, at least as an undercoat. I had decided I did not like the green wood hatch covers I had done, so they will be done differently. Do any of you know what the common colours were for those? I am thinking of doing them a slightly darker brown (Humbrol 110 Natural Wood) for contrast. I have not found any photographs of this particular Knight Templar, and they would not have been in colour anyway, so anything I do is purely conjecture, but I would like something that was possible. Sadly, my colour plaintings in my Coaster and Tramp books do not show battens.

 

I also tackled the three cargo winches. Again, I was unable to find any images on Google which looked like the plan layout, so I have gone for a 'representation' rather than accuracy. The first one took me quite some time, about an hours or so:

 

DSCN9005

 

Some 5 thou card for the base, phot-etch from the White Ensign set for the 1/350 Illustrious for the uprights and wheels, and some 0.8mm rod for the spindle. Then suddenly, like busses (or rabbits), there were loads!

 

DSCN9006

 

That back one bugged me, as the top sections of the upright splayed out quite a bit in the photograph, but looked okay in real life, but it would not do. A quick snick or two with a razor blade released the uprights and spindle, and a swipe or two with a sanding stick on the spindle reduced it so the splaying no longer happened, and I was very happy. As a matter of possible interest, I used a dab of CA to glue on the uprights (which had been folded) while the base was held in self-closing tweezers. The spindle went into a couple of small blobs of Glue'N'Glaze (PVA) which then gave me time to try and align the spindle side to side, up and down, and fore/aft, followed by a slight smear of CA to lock it in. The wheels then went into spots of CA, and were positioned with a moist wood cocktail stick picking up the small etch parts. It all went quickly once I had worked out what to do!

 

Hopefully I will be able to get a second coat of paint onto the bits I did earlier later, if you know what I mean!

 

That is it, thanks for looking and for the likes and comments,

 

Ray

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Bertie, I know what you mean! Especially as I painted them last night:

 

DSCN9010

 

DSCN9009

 

Again, the colour is conjecture. I still need to finish off the 'spindles'.

 

The work today has been destructive. I have already shown the MDF base I am going to use, and today was the day where I was to create a hole in it to sit the Knight Templar in. Such an easy job, I would chain drill holes around the ship's bottom perimeter that I had marked on the board, and use one of my small saws to join them up, and file the rest - just like plastic card. Yeh right! My drill would not bite into the MDF, despite having used them on MDF and cleaned them up before. Hmm. Then, a brainwave! Yes, I do have them sometimes. I found my panel line scriber, and carefully scribed out the shape, then used it time and time again to deepen the line. My saw still would not bite in. Then another brainwave (crumbs!), and this time it was Mr Stanley to the rescue. I got my fixed Stanley knife out, popped on some goggles, and then pushed the blade into the MDF, wiggled it about a bit, and found that it started to cut the board, and five minutes later I had the hole opened up and ready to file. Please note, this is NOT the way I would recommend dealing with this sort of thing, but in the absence of the proper tools, it worked for me. Learning lesson: get the proper tools, Ray!

I have started filing the outer edge of the hole and test fitting the hull of Knight Templar, and it is getting there.

 

DSCN9007

 

As I was test fitting, I kept marking the board where the hull was touching the hole sides, and I also needed to adjust the tail end quite a bit as the ship sits quite deeply in the hole and the profile is quite different there. I did make sure I wore a mask while sanding, and also hoovered up regularly. It is getting quite close now:

 

DSCN9008

 

I am leaving it at that for today but should hopefully get it seated properly tomorrow, then I can look at fitting cocktail sticks and card to represent the waves. I have taken Bandsaw Steve's suggestion earlier on to increase the wavelength of the waves, it will not be a rough sea, but certainly one with a fair swell.

 

Thanks for looking,

 

Ray

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3 hours ago, Bertie McBoatface said:

I'm sorry Ray, I fear I may have started a tool based thread hijack. I hope you won't be sore about it.

 

Of coarse not, I can hack it!

 

8 hours ago, ArnoldAmbrose said:

Gidday Ray, TWO brainwaves in a single day? I hope you had a good lie down afterwards. 😁 But I'm following you method of making the sea, it is something I've yet to try. Regards, Jeff.

 

Hi Jeff, I was stunned, I must say. I know, two whole ideas, whatever is the world coming to?

 

This is what I have been trying for the sea base. First, I marked out (eventually) the swell wavelength I wanted. It took a couple of goes to get it the way I wanted:

 

DSCN9011

 

The wavelength was 14cm in 1/300 scale, it looks okay to me as a non-nautical sort of chappie. Then I popped the ship into its new home to see if things looked alright:

 

DSCN9012

 

Next, I trimmed some wooden cocktail sticks and used PVA to glue them down onto the thick black lines. I tried to angle the ends of the sticks so they did not poke out over the edge of the MDF base. I held the sticks in place with some clamps for an hour or so:

 

DSCN9013

 

I then put some thick card over the flat bottom of the board and drew the cut-out outline through the hole:

 

DSCN9014

 

The card I am using has an embossed pattern on it, which looks a little sea-surface like in a calm condition sort of way:

DSCN9015

 

Then cut that out with the help of my new-found friend Mr Stanley and his heavy, solid knife:

 

DSCN9016

 

Then it was a case of adding lots of good, strong double-sided tape onto the MDF, and then pressing down the prepared card, aligning carefully along two sides that had become datum lines during the prep stage:

 

DSCN9018

 

I had cut the card a little over-sized, which presents on the two non-datum sides, and will be trimmed later. This process creates some gaps along the four edges, and a few along the hull line when the ship is fitted, but I will come to resolving that in a future post. I am now off to try and work out the paint scheme for the water, as I want to do it in an Atlantic Ocean colour of some sort, but not stormy, as that would be too close to when she foundered.

 

I hope that has helped,

 

Ray

 

PS keep the 'saw' jokes coming if there are any others on file

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The upshot of all that work, along with a little trimming of any card that overhung the location slot was this:

 

DSCN9019

 

This allows a restricted view of the hull red underwater section in places, but there is quite a gap under the stern which will need resolving.

 

DSCN9020

 

Here you can see the cocktail stick created gaps - Polifiller will be to the rescue there, and finally, I was able to set the ship at a slight angle as I wanted so she is listing slightly:

 

DSCN9021

 

Knight Templar sits in her position purely by friction at the moment so she is adjustable, so if any of our knowledgeable crew think it is too canted over, please say!

 

Anyway, that is it for now, thanks for looking and don't forget, if I am about to do something seriously wrong, please shout it out! I am always ready to learn, and that is one main reason I frequently state what will be done next.

 

Ray

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39 minutes ago, Ray S said:

 

Knight Templar sits in her position purely by friction

That alone is a tribute to your carpentry skills. 🙂

 

I'm enjoying this build. When you come to setting your yards, I have posted an illustration on p.17 of my Beaglebuild that might help. 

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Lovely model coming along there. It's always a sign of excellent modelling when a build suddenly re-appears after several years and as a reader, you immediately remember it.

 

As for display options, how about depicting her riding at anchor? It's rarely modelled, and would work well with the position of the ship relative to the waves as you've modelled them- as though she was swinging around into the wind. You could also play around with representing furled sails. Just an idea.

 

As for the hatch coamings, I think it would be more or less a moot point if the canvas covers were in place, which would cover most of the coamings too (coamings were much shallower than in more modern times). That said, in the later 19th century it appears from builders models and paintings that pretty much anything is plausible colour-wise for superstructures.  Wooden structures appear to be generally remain simply varnished, or perhaps a 'scumbled' painted wood effect. Steel structures most commonly painted variously in white, buff, black. Also a two-tone white/red oxide (split at dado level) being more and more common as you get closer to the 20th century, It seems to depend largely on the individual line house style and the prestige accorded to the vessel. The wooden deckhouses, companionways and hatch coamings of some vessels in the period of mid- Victorian decorative excess were also 'lined out' in the manner of contemporary railway carriages. This seems to have died out by the last quarter of the decade.

 

Looking forward to seeing her progress.

 

Will

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4 hours ago, Bertie McBoatface said:

That alone is a tribute to your carpentry skills. 🙂

 

I'm enjoying this build. When you come to setting your yards, I have posted an illustration on p.17 of my Beaglebuild that might help. 

 

Bertie, thanks for that, I will have a look later on.

 

EDIT: Right, I have just had a look, and it was very handy. I think Knight Templar would have struggled with 128 sails on, or did you mean the illustration with the wind blowing! Thanks for that suggestion, it is duly noted and by sheer luck that is pretty much how I set them, thanks to the crew on here.

 

@Killingholme, thank you for those kind words! I had thought about the 'at anchor' scenario, but I have set the boom and gaffs for sail already. I do like the anchored image a lot though, maybe another day, another project.

 

I have started to fill in the gaps by the raised areas of the waves at the side of the seascape, using polyfilla (I think I spelt it right this time!). I have to do this two or three times, as there is nothing in the gaps to stop the filler falling in, just blind luck, and pressing lots in at a time, remembering not to raise the sea level. It sands off easily, especially as the first lot was extra-light 'no sand polyfilla', so do not worry about those blobs around the edge, they will be history. I am thinking about a backup plan, namely getting some beading to go around the edges, then I will REALLY find out how my carpentry skills are.

 

DSCN9022

 

At this point, yet again the inner 6-year-old in my mind wanted to see what Knight Templar looks like now, all just dry-fitted, but not with those winch-like things I made the other day, in here new colour scheme. I am still frightened to get the winches off their masking tape and concerned that the 0.5thou card will bend, or various bits ping off into the oggin.

 

DSCN9023

 

DSCN9024

 

DSCN9026

 

You can probably see where the extra filler needs to go, that has been addressed now. I have found a place on another forum which shows various sea colours:

 

http://www.shipmodels.info/mws_forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=157447

 

If you scroll down to the end of the first post, there is a handy illustration showing various shades of sea, which will be handy. I just have to experiment and sea (sorry!) how I go. That post is by Chris Flodberg, a very well respected maritime modeller.

 

That is it for now, thanks for looking and for the comments and likes, and advice.

 

Ray

Edited by Ray S
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