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S309, Grey Fox was one of the 7 steam gunboats built to the Denny & Sons design.  They were intended to counter the S-boot threat in the channel and were the smallest RN vessels equipped with steam turbines. 


They were 135 ft on the waterline, 23 ft 4 inches in breadth and had a draft of 3 ft 9 inches forward.  Displacing 135 tons (initially) they could make 36 knots.  Grey Fox was built by Yarrow and launched in September 1941, she survived the war and was sold in 1947


They bristled with guns, of various calibres', really being armed from whatever guns were available at the time.  The main armament was a HA 3inch gun of WW1 vintage, originally intended as a land-based anti-aircraft gun.  The gun shield sshows was only fitted to this gun when mounted in SGB's.


Grey Fox saw action in the channle and was there at D day.  


The following action report is taken from a thread about Grey Fox on the BMPT forum


July 10th 1942.
In a furious night encounter, off Etaples, Grey Fox and Grey Wolf engaged 6 German minesweepers. They sank 2 but a 3rd collided with Grey Fox with such force that everyone on her bridge was thrown on their faces and a huge hole was driven in her hull. Grey Fox struggled home, with her bows almost awash.


And is backed up by this first hand account of the incident


So far as I remember the almost simultaneous result was a sharp heel to starboard as the ship turned, and a burst of gunfire from our own gunners. This was followed by what my mind registered as an explosion on the port side forward. I was thrown violently out of my seat and against the ship's side. As I picked myself up the ship slowly righted itself and I have an indelible picture on my mind of seeing sea water pouring through the open watertight door in the bulkhead between the galley flat and the wardroom passage through which spare ammunition had been passed. At that precise moment there was no one forward of that bulkhead and by good fortune, or perhaps design, the watertight door closed from forward and as I pulled it together the inrush and water pressure behind it helped to shut it making it easy to knock the clips on. We were well down by the bows and I think fear of sinking was uppermost, but our forward gunner was still firing. Some minutes later the First Lieutenant came down and between us we completed shoring up the bulkhead with timbers kept at the far end of the galley flat for that purpose. I then learned from Lieutenant Erskine-Hill that what I had thought was an explosion was the sound of the German R-Boat as it rammed itself through the ship's side into the wardroom and forward messdeck. It shortly afterwards fell away and sank, leaving a large gash in our bows ... The next couple of hours or so were considerably nerve-wracking, sitting on watch with the ship very much down by the bow and wondering, apprehensively, whether the bulkhead against which I sat would hold. The level of water on the other side could clearly be seen by the condensation line which was somewhere near shoulder high, with the deck of the wireless office awash ... We were apparently wavering sluggishly all over the place but heading slowly in the correct general direction and managed to get within sight of Newhaven under our own steam. However, we could not be trusted to keep a straight course to enter harbour unaided and "Grey Wolf" took us in tied alongside. I do not remember ever being so relieved to get off watch! Daylight revealed what a remarkable escape we had had. Lieutenant Erskine-Hill solved the problem of inspecting the damage by the simple expedient of rowing the dinghy through the hole in the ship's side!


Following the conclusion of the build tread Grey Fox build, here is the finished vessel in its display case and some detail shots


DSCN1957 DSCN1956
















And for a size comparison, here it is next to the Fairmile B I built last year to the same scale Fairmile B build, waterline the same




Thanks again to those who followed and provided help and kind comments, Schnellboot thread starting tomorrow



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Stunning build Steve and a great WIP I like others have learned a lot from your builds and look forward to the next one  :worthy:


Stay Safe


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12 hours ago, robgizlu said:

Beautiful model(s) - and lovely display case BTW.

Thanks Rob, case from Peter Jones at  DSC Showcases in Newbury.  Great guy, has made all my cases, I can thoroughly recommend him 👍


And to you and the others who may have learned something from my mistakes, that's what this is all about.  Encouraging scratch building to (hopefully) a high standard finish makes so many more subjects and scales available for modelling than the kit providers offer



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  • 4 weeks later...

A replica to be proud of @Steve D - definitely a contendender for the Britmodeller project of 2020.


The product of craftsmanship of the very highest order coupled with a willingness to share and explain the wide range of techniques you used through your WIP thread.

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Thanks again for all the kind comments, I have to admit to being pleased with the result. 


If we ever see exhibitions again, I will enter it to see what people think of it in the flesh..



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