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Chains and stuff


AE2, and indeed all E-class submarines, had a fair amount of chain and cables and stuff stored hanging visibly on the sides of the casemates.  Which chain did what and exactly how they were arranged and why they were arranged the way they were remain something of a mystery to me.  This is especially true as the cables and chains seem to be arranged symmetrically, yet the anchor is only on one side of the vessel.  Furthermore, if I'm reading the plans correctly, there appears to be an anchor chain stored on the inside of the vessel suggesting that all of this exterior 'tackle' may have had nothing to do with the anchor at all. My best guess is that all this gear is something to do with recovery of the vessel, for example if needed to be towed. If anyone knows the answer please chip in.


Anyhow, time was running out - so despite a fair measure of uncertainty, I just pressed on and built my 'best guess' according to the limited photos available.


First, drill a little hole about on the side of the casemate towards the rear of the conning tower.  This is where the cable appears to terminate in period photos, I suspect it may have been tied off in some way,  but I'm going to show the tail end of the cable disappearing into the casemate.    The little hand-held twist screw is good, but they are very, very susceptible to breakage. This one survived somehow.



I reckon this type of chain, from a local wargaming shop, looks about right. Nice big oval links look fairly nautical to my eye.



Thread it through the relevant bung-hole and hold it in place with some two-part epoxy araldite.



Now find a length of lead modelling wire and rest it carefully on top of the little brass hooks that I glued on the side of the casemate a few months back.



Squash each hook over the cable to hold the cable in place - no glue required this time. Don't worry if there's a bit of slack in the cable between each hook because according to period photos it was rarely stored fully tight.



Now it looks a bit like this.  Don't worry about the rough paint job on the canvas screen, at this point there were still a few more coats to go. 



Next step is to connect the cable to the chain.



Very simply done. Just wrap the lead wire around a chain link to form a loop.  I'm guessing this is basically what must be done in real life.  



Cut off the surplus chain links and cut off the surplus wire.  Stick the trailing edge of the cable in the little casemate bung hole that was drilled for it and voila...



One possibly accurate representation of the chain and 'recovery cable' - if that's in fact what it is.


Best Regards and thanks to anyone who persists and follows this 'old news'.


Bandsaw Steve.


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just catching back up on this.  Excellent work Steve, and congratulations on completing the sub.  Definitely something worth a place on your display shelf

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Getting Stuck In


Now that the submarine is basically finished it needs to get stuck into the seascape.


Drill some holes in the base.



Screw the submarine into position. Note that as submarines are weapons of stealth the model has been made invisible in this picture.



Assemble any furry white fluffy, wavy, frothy looking stuff you can find - except cotton wool. Cotton wool never seems to work quite right for modelling purposes I find.



Note that when I cut the hole in the seascape for the submarine to sit in I cut it far too wide at the stern, see the big gaps that have formed. I'm about to pay for that mistake. If I do this again I will keep the hole as closely conforming to the hull's waterline as possible.



What should happen is that I should be able to stuff a thin slither of fluffy stuff, in this case more of the rayon from the cuddly toy that I disembowelled a few months back, to fill in the tiny gap.  What I have here is a canyon that needs to be filled in.  Oh well, carry on...



It's not so bad near the bow.



Once you have had a fair go at loosely filling in the gaps all the way around the vessel, start painting this all over the fluffy selvedge.



Just like this...



Then repeat the process, filling in all the gaps up to the water line. It's much quicker and easier where the gaps between the seascape and the vessel are smallest. Even once the gap was filled, the edge between the fluffy gap filling rayon and the solid sea base was quite visible. Here I'm hiding it under some white oil paint. The Rayon seems to turn a bit greyish when saturated with liquid resin so a bit of white paint also helps to 'lift' the appearance of the wake.



So, when it was all done it looked something like this.  My only concern is that the vessel looks like it's going fast - really fast. Perhaps too fast for a WW1 submarine that probably rarely exceeded about 8 knots? Part of the problem is as discussed above, I made the gap too wide between the base and the waterline of the submarine so there had to be a lot of froth in the water to fill the gap, which makes the boat look like it's really moving! Still, I have to say that I am pretty happy with this and many people have seen it now and no-one has commented on the fact that  the thing's about to start hydroplaning!



Note that in this picture this one is flying a white ensign. How that got there can be the next post. 

Only three more updates to go now I think...



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1 hour ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

I made the gap too wide between the base and the waterline of the submarine so there had to be a lot of froth in the water to fill the gap, which makes the boat look like it's really moving!


maybe the ocean was going really fast in the opposite direction



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White Ensign


A problem that rattled away for some time in the back of my rattly old brain was how I was going to make and then hang a white ensign off the back of this model.  Eventually I came up with a plan that did not involve internet shopping.  On my way home from work one day I dropped into a chemist's shop and asked the nice young lady behind the counter if she had any medical tape that might be suitable for making a 1:100 scale white ensign.  The strange thing is - this time I actually did that! I actually told her what I needed this for! No bull! And after a couple of minutes poking about we came up with this stuff, which, as it turned out was just about perfect.




Here's the other bits and pieces I collected. Some fine beading wire and some foil from a bottle of Italian Riccadonna bubbly, left over from the Christmas season.



Cut a rectangle of  Riccadonna foil to exactly the right size (note here that some research had to be done because the Royal Navy it seems is very particular about the size and shape of its ensigns) and cut a length of medical sticky tape exactly twice the length of the Riccadonna foil. Stick the foil onto the tape and lie a length of beading wire along the center as shown.



Now fold the tape over itself, trapping the foil in between the two lengths of tape and trapping the wire into position.



Paint the whole thing white in order to suppress some of the fluffiness of the medical tape.



Use a blow dryer to make the little flag go 'buzzyzzzzzzyyzzzyzzzyyzzzzyyyy' in the wind - as shown.



Now comes the big reveal. This was the best stroke of luck in the whole build. A few years back my lovely wife bought be a Hobbyboss 1/72 scale Royal Navy Lynx for my birthday.  I still have not built it 😬 but it did come with these decals.  Have a look at number 41 folks!



Perfect size!



Find some old generic red decal - in this case from a 1/48 scale Revel Bf 109 G - just in case anyone' s interested.



Add stripes and smooth things out with some matt varnish.


That last photo's a bit rough - but I'm sure you will get the idea.


Next post I'll attach the ensign to the back of the boat and bend it about a bit (that's why I sandwiched the foil in the middle) and I'll also sort out the safety cable / wire that runs all around the stanchions.  Must just about be done if I'm right down to sticking the flag on the thing!


Best Regards,



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On 6/19/2018 at 8:32 AM, Bandsaw Steve said:

I dropped into a chemist's shop and asked the nice young lady behind the counter if she had any medical tape


Nope! don't believe it for a moment.  That's just too far fetched a story to be credible.



Nice flaggery though

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Nearly there


There's a thing that the psychologists call the 'closure motive'. This is the urge to finish something once started even if completion of the task is utterly irrational.  That's about where I am with this thread. I 'feel' I have to finish it, even though you all know that the model was completed over two months ago!


Anyhow - by my reckoning there's only two more posts to go counting this one - so we are nearly there.


This will be reasonably short because the job that follows - laying out the safety railing or cable or whatever it's called turned out to be fairly easy because - most unlike me - I had planned ahead!  The other reason it was easy was because I used this stuff which is absolutely invaluable in my view...  If you don't have this and you want to rig something then get some!



Here's another good thing to have. It' a WW1 Submarine Safety Cable Threader - just ask for one at any haberdashery shop.



Here the safety cable threader has been threaded through a hole in the conning tower and the 'EZY Line' has been threaded through the little loop on the end of the threader.  The small red circle shows the line going through the loop and the big red circle shows the handle on the threader. 



Now just pull the threader back through the hole and the line follows through quite happily. See - there's nothing difficult about this scratch building business.



Here's the same job being done, passing the thread through the eyes of the needles that I used for the stanchions.  This is where the forward planning paid off, it's almost like the needles are supposed to have something threaded through them!



And so and so and so... Simple job really.



And when you get to the end just wrap the 'EZY' line a few times around a stanchion, dab on a few drops of cyanoacrylate super-glue and it's onto the next job, which is...



Attach the ensign.


Note that I have managed to attach a length of 'EZY' line to the flagstaff that runs parallel to the flagstaff and a couple of mm clear of it (it's in the background of this photo).

Here's the Ensign that I made earlier.



Here I have wrapped the beading wire at the base of the ensign around both the flagstaff and the 'EZY Line' lanyard.  This pulls the 'EZY Line' in nice and tight against the flagstaff while leaving the flag slightly clear of it. 



Here's the effect once the top is done. I think that it's important to make the flag stand clear of the flag staff, except at the very top and bottom, because that's the way these things are attached. What I did not want was to just 'stick the flag on the mast' so I'm actually pretty happy with the effect I achieved here. I also bent a gentle wave into the ensign so it wouldn't look so much like a slab of plywood.  The wrapping of the beading wire around the flagstaff looks a bit rough in this photo, but it doesn't look quite so bad in real life, photos always make these things look worse - that's my excuse anyway. 



And then it was time for the final touch on the model per-se


So, that's it really. There's just one more thing to go on this project and that's to give the old boat some crew.

Next time please join me to see for yourself just how badly figure painting can be done!  


Bandsaw Steve


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Thanks for the EZ Line tip Steve.  I've ordered both black & brown. 👍

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17 minutes ago, JohnWS said:

Thanks for the EZ Line tip Steve.  I've ordered both black & brown. 👍

Wow! I feel a weight of responsibility now. Hope you like it!

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1 minute ago, Bandsaw Steve said:

Wow! I feel a weight of responsibility now. Hope you like it!

You should get a sales commission from EZ Line. :D

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Excellent information again Steve.


You are teaching us all sorts of different uses for the most esoteric devices out there! Lesson learnt: Must think outside of the box...


Looking forward to you crewing the boat!


All the best, Ray

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The Last Post!


Well this is it, the last step in this project which will involve, of all things figure painting! A field about which I have practically no experience and expertise at all.


Truth be told, finding appropriate figures was damned tricky. I'm building at 1/100 scale and figures at that scale are relatively rare.  As luck would have it though, there's a specialist wargaming shop here in Perth and they had a small set of 1/100 scale Afrika Korps officers that I thought with a bit of panel beating might fit the bill.


And here they are set up as a dry run. One of the guys was just the right height to rest his hand on the dodging screen which looked great. I was especially pleased with the guy with the binoculars, he looked like he was alert and interested in where the boat was going but still relaxed. I thought he was a natural fit for this environment.



So I decided these would be my crew. The only alteration I made to the these German gentlemen was to file down the crown of their desert caps and stick some discs of plastic sheeting on top. This gave them all SD caps.



 I probably could have done a bit more with these figures, but they are pretty small and fairly well hidden in amongst all of that stuff on the top of the bridge. So I just left them like this...



undercoated them...



and brush painted white shirts and black uniforms. I gave each of them a black tie, since they were all officers. It was just as well too, because this hid the fact that one was wearing an iron cross around his neck.



 I mixed up some flesh coloured oil paints,



and slapped it on the fleshy bits.



Give each officer some gold braid - a bit rough and probably a bit too 'yellow' but there you go.



Some two-part epoxy saw these chaps stuck in place.

DSC_0759 (2)


And that's it folks - this WIP thread finally complete! 

DSC_0757 (2)


Those of you have been following along will know that this model was actually finished in April 2018 and that these final threads have just been here to complete the story.  If this project is new to you please feel free to use this link to have a look at the RFI thread.


And now it remains only to thank everyone who offered advice, encouragement and interest in this project. The fact that so many people have viewed, 'liked' and commented on this project has offered me a lot of encouragement throughout. I really am not sure that I would have reached the end without the input and support that the Britmodeller community has provided.


Thanks again.

Bandsaw Steve.



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Yes Steve, thanks for adding these final posts after you had finished the model. It has been a wonderful project to read along, and as you know, it has inspired at least one modeller to contemplate what he thought was impossible!


All the best,



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finally.... the icing on the cake



that little assistant down the haberdashery store will be getting lonely now, poor girl

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