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I have recently bought the 1/50 Artesania Latina le Renard kit. Le Renard was a French privateer Cutter built in the early 19th century. I actually bought the kit not so much for building it but rather for upscaling its parts to 1/25 which is my favourite scale for model boats. I simply enlarged the parts by 200 % on my printer and glued the copies onto 4 mm plywood.

 

The AL kit is disappointing in that no drawings are provided, the instruction booklets only contain colour pics of the model. By the way, the kit is based on the le Renard replica which is currently in St Malo and not on the original vessel. In fact the original le Renard was bigger and carried much more sail. Apparently today's safety regulations no longer allow the original sail plan and besides that would require a bigger and more experienced crew.

 

My first steps :

 

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A nice shot of the replica showing her asymmetrical bowsprit :

 

OdutvOG.jpg

 

 

Arjan

 

 

Edited by Arjan
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Thanks gentlemen ! Bill, I did most of the cutting with a simple electric jigsaw fitted with  a scrolling blade suitable for soft wood I also used a hole saw for the lightening holes :

 

8hFDZsS.jpg

 

It was an ideal job to do outside in the shade because we've had some very warm days lately.

 

The advantage of modelling a vessel which exists as a  replica is that there are lots of reference pics to be to be found on the internet. These are the only drawings I managed to find of the original vessel :

 

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Regards,

 

Arjan

 

 

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It always amazes me how much sail they could pack onto these cutters and stay upright. :shrug:

 

You would certainly need a large well trained crew

 

Looking forward to seeing this develop.....

 

Kev

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1 hour ago, Arjan said:

Thanks gentlemen ! Bill, I did most of the cutting with a simple electric jigsaw fitted with  a scrolling blade suitable for soft wood I also used a hole saw for the lightening holes :

 

8hFDZsS.jpg

 

Big Boys Toys that's what I like to see  :coolio:

 

I am sure this will be just as interesting as your last build Arjan  :popcorn:

 

beefy

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An interesting account of a bloody battle Le Renard was engaged in  :

 

 

" Action in the Channel

Here is the subsequent report by Captain Desrochette, which gives an impressive description of the fierceness of the battle with the British Navy Schooner Alphea. ‘I had the honour to inform you that I dropped anchor yesterday evening in the bay of La Grande Anse, Diellette, back from my cruise. We left Batz Island on 8th September 1813, with a strong west wind and we crossed the channel during the night. The next morning at 4am we saw Start Point, four leagues away to the north west. At 3pm we saw a sail on our lee side and ran for it. At 5pm I realised that it was a British Navy schooner. I put about and she did follow and took chase, two leagues behind us. Within one hour she closed in and I ordered that we clear for action. She started the fight with her chase guns. She went about and I fired with my guns several broadsides into her at pistol range, with the additional support of all our musketry.

During the firing, my First Lieutenant Devose, as well as two Lieutenants Berhelot and Rameire, were all wounded, as well as a great number of my crew. The wind dropped off, although there was still a heavy swell, and the enemy drifted on our lee side. I ordered my crew to board her. Superior in number the enemy was able to fend us off, although with heavy losses and firing grape shots on to the whole forecastle. My executive officer got killed and I had some additional crewmen wounded. Nevertheless, I did not have to encourage my crew and Mr Herbet, the officer on the forecastle, with the support of Sub-Lieutenant Lavergne, got together several men to make another attempt, but the two vessels broke their grapples and parted away from each other. During this time, the guns on both sides were firing and the forecastle officers threw several hand grenades. While the vessels were still together, we were fighting each other, grabbing lances or pistols from the hands of our opponents and maiming each other without needing to board. The enemy drifted further on our starboard side, actively firing at us broadside after broadside.

One of them tore away my arm and I encouraged my men by shouting: ‘Be brave, they are going to strike!’ I asked Mr Herbet, the last remaining lieutenant , to take over command of the vessel and he arranged transportation to my cabin. Time was now around 3am. Mr Herbet and Mr Lavergne encouraged the remaining men still alive to keep fighting, until two of our shots seemed to bring distress on board the enemy ship. As the commanding officer was shouting: ‘Cease fire, they have striked’, the schooner blew up at pistol range on our lee side. We were engulfed with flames and debris which were falling all around. The commanding officer ordered water to be thrown everywhere and asked to lower the launch to save the enemy crew who had survived the explosion, but it had been completely shattered and our aft davits destroyed. We saw three or four survivors swimming among the debris and we were able to shout to them to come to us. as we were unable to manoeuvre due to lack of wind. None was able to reach us, they shouted that they were blind. Time was 3:30am. Our first task was then to take care of the wounded, 31 of them, with only five dead.

Only 13 sailors were still not wounded, and we repaired the damage as much as we could, whilst aiming towards the French coast where we arrived on the 14th’. Signed for Captain Leroux by Jean Herbet, Lieutenant.

Captain Leroux, like four other crew members, died soon afterwards from his wounds. They were buried in Tréauville cemetery, within the Diellette Harbour Parish, where the cutter called to recover from its fight before sailing back to St. Malo. " 

 

Source of the quoted passage (also some pics of a fantastic diorama) :

 

https://www.modelboats.co.uk/news/article/le-renard/602

 

 

I'm surprised by the ferocity of the engagement described in the above. It's clear that human lives were not terribly precious in those days .....

 

Regards,

 

Arjan

 

 

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I'm amazed at the size of the crew for the size of the vessel.  There's not many places to hide when under fire.

 

John

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Lain, this build has been a process of trial and error, (the latter mostly 🙂).  In the original Artesania kit the stem, keel timbers and stern post are separate parts which are to be added only after planking the hull. I should have made them as one piece with the main center part. The bulwarks also posed a challenge, I fitted some nails temporarily so I could use these for screwing on clamps. I used Abachi planks (1 cm in width and 3 mm in thickness) for the bulwarks but the planks proved to be too difficult to bend. So I removed them (only after the glue had set ....) I'm going to use thinner 2 mm pine planks now instead, these are much more pliable.

 

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Regards,

 

Arjan

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