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  1. #1
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    I have decided to spend the time here to post my experiences and build-up pics of this great kit. The kit was purchased from: http://www.modelsailingships.com at a price of $2100.00. Here is some info from the above site about this ship:

    The Prince de NeufchΓ’tel
    Adam and Noah Brown's Privateer Schooner

    Built at New York in 1813 this ship was one of the fastest and most successful Amercian ships of the War of 1812 (6 prizes in 6 days in the English Channel (1814); chased 17 times by men-of-war that summer, but outran them every time). A large schooner (110' 8", 33.7m length on deck), she was typical in body plan of the American privateers. Very highly thought of by her country (she changed owners in 1814 for $21,000) as well as her enemies. When finally taken, the British copied her.

    Our ship is armed with 16 18lb carronades and two 6lb cannon, has three square sails, a driver (supplied as a double reefed version as well) a topmast gaff sail, a fore gaff sail, and three jibs. She has two sail servos (one, a sail winch, for the fore and aft sails, one for the square) and one rudder servo.

    Length on deck is 55.3" (1.4m)
    Hull weight is 25 lbs (11.4 kgs), Sailing weight is 47 lbs (21.4 kgs)
    Ballast keel weighs 22 lbs (10.0 kgs)
    Ready for sailing she measures (extreme) 97" long, 63" high and 33" wide (2.23m x 1.6m x .33m). She packs into just one box, 64" x 17" x 13.5" high (1.63m x .43m x .34m high)
    The price for this vessel is $7,000.00 fully assembled, or $2,100.00 as a complete kit.

    I really wanted to build up the British brig "Grasshopper", but after reading about the exploits of this American vessel decided to go with it instead This is a link to her exploits: http://www.modelsailingships.com/shi...nce_story.html

    Here is the way she came (sorry about some of the early photos, it was before I bought my digital camera and I used a webcam).

    That is "Little Big Dog" inspecting the new addition to the house![:-]
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  2. #2
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    After checking out the parts for damage first you sand down the gel coated fiberglass hull to remove seams and minor imperfections. Next make up servo blocks (for the sheets) and glue them to the preinstalled servo deck. You then attach the sheet blocks. You also install the drain plug and O ring (screwing in the plug broke my keel when I tried to install it and I had to glue over the plug and seal it permanently...be careful here!) The pics here also show the blocks that will support the deck later along with the keel rod tubes which are also preinstalled.
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  3. #3
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Next came marking and cutting out the two access hatches in the deck. The plans were confusing on the location of the aft rudder servo (coach house) opening as the plans had been changed, and the pre made marks on the deck no longer were correct. The next problem was the mechanical hatch did not have a curvature on it to match the deck curvature so after several trys at gluing it I contacted Philip , the designer, and found out the hatch sent me was cut wrong. Too late I already had it CA glued it for the third time and was not removing it again. I had to fill in the area between the deck and straight hatch with marine grade epoxy.

    This should be fixed on all future kits. Keep in mind that I am the first person to build up one of these kits. At least none of the other buyers have given Philip any feedback. I have hull number 4 with #1 being the prototype.

    Next was the test fit of the deck to the hull, after drilling for the keel rod tube holes. This is where I discovered my biggest problem, and little did I know how bad this problem would effect other things later on!

    The deck was cut wrong! It was too narrow. I had a 1/2 inch gap in the fore end on both sides...see pics. I called Philip and he was willing to send me another piece of laminate deck to glue over the old one, or let me send it back and he would fix it. Being the stubborn one I declined and decided to try to resolve the problem myself....besides I didn't want to be bothered with having to pack up this huge model or have to re-cut the deck openings and deal with that hatch again!
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  4. #4
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Having decided on a strategy on how to solve the too small of a deck issue, I proceeded to prepare and install the pvc pre-cut bulwarks. Other than breaking one while the other came that way, I had few problems here. Lots of sanding cutting and re-test fitting here. They were glued to the hull with marine grade epoxy and held in place as in the pics. You need a lot of clips here or you might want to drill (in the future gun port locations) and bolt them temporarily as done by another chap on his brig. Notice the keel rods are in place to help hold the proper position for the deck. Also notice the temporary blocks on the hatch to help me to remove it...these will be replaced by the boat chocks and baulks later.
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  5. #5
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    The deck...now for the deck! I tried to glass this in as per the plans but my limited knowledge and bank account led me to deviate from those instructions. I was supposed to fill in the gaps with a glass resin mixture, only...my mixture fired off and hardened before I could even get it mixed. An expensive lesson as this was special west marine grade stuff.

    So...what to do now.....I then decided to...yep...the ole stand by....duct tape the cracks from the underside and pour straight resin around the deck edges to fill in. (This is after gluing the deck to the spacer blocks down under). This worked OK but I had leaks and resin ran down the sides and I had to find the leaks and do some more filling in. As for the area fore that was going to be showing where the deck was missing, I filled in on top the hard resin with wood filler and sanded. It came out quite well and after 4 coats of poly on the deck it looked great!

    I did have to sort of guess when the deck was in the right position as I could not press it up against the bulwarks in places due to the too small deck and the gaps left(this is what will cause me the most problems later).

    Then came the gun ports...I used a zip tool laminate trimmer here...and lots of filing and filling and sanding. I also decided to cut the 2 stern gun ports and 2 forward ports although they were not supposed to be (I like to be different sometimes). These pics also show the houses and hatches built...they were not glued in these pics. The mast and bowsprit openings are cut and the waterway and scuppers installed. The rail is also added.

    I had a problem with the angle of the bowsprit at this point and had to add on to the stem rest (after Philip sent some extra material) after having to cut the hole in the bow higher for proper bowsprit angle. The deck was installed a little too high up forward, just enough to cause numerous problems...this being the first noticed. I also had to fill the now ob-longed bowsprit hole and make it presentable. I hung the ship from the hobby room door frame, bow down, and once again duct taped a form and used epoxy to fill in the hole with a taped over with plastic bagged bowsprit in place. Hey...worked for me!
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  6. #6
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    At this point I have deviated from the plans and am working on various things simultaneously. I have built and installed the masts. Installed the rudder servo block and servo with rudder and painted. The paint I used was semi gloss latex enamel. I placed 7 coats over 7 days and let it dry for 2 more then tried to remove the tape. It took up paint in spots from the bottom of the hull. I had used painters tape. I think that I sanded the hull too glassy and the paint didn't stick as well as it could have if I would have just rough sanded. I also didn't prime...bad on me! Anyway after touch ups....and two more weeks...I spayed the hull with over a dozen coats of clear acrylic krylon. Lookin good now!

    I decided at this point to bring her to life and went to test the rudder. Now I knew that the electronics were practically bullet proof and I should have no problems here....right...wrong! I had noise, I had a good deal of oscillation, and I had only 20-30 degrees of rudder travel...total! I sent the servo back to the Hitec factory after getting the runaround from the hobby shop Philip bought them from. Guess what...the reworked servo was worse...if that was possible. I then decided it would be easier and cheaper to just buy another servo...so I did....guess what...it was the same! I tested the others so I know it was the 2 rudder servos. I then contacted Philip and sent everything to him for testing. I sent him the servos and remote control. He verified my findings and after a good delay...got everything back to include 2 more new rudder servos. These work...finally!
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  7. #7
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Check out the shine!

    Is was at this point that I discovered another problem...my fore mast was leaning to port. The deck was also missaligned by about 1/8 of an inch from side to side and I had to either redrill the mast step hole in the below deck or oblong the hole in the main deck. I decided to try to pull it straight with the standing rigging instead because of the slight amount of play at the mast hinge joint. This worked! The slight bend in the mast is unnoticeable. I only needed an inch at the top of the mast.
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  8. #8
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    These are the latest pics (last night) and you can see she is getting close to being finished. I found many other little details such as wrong parts, missing parts, numerous wrong things on the plans but these should all be fixed for the next lucky fellow. I will post some detailed shots of the rigging and inside the hull as soon as my camera software gets backs up and working. I also hope to have some action shots sometime soon.
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  9. #9
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Next are the electronics and internal rigging..other than the initial problems as noted earlier I had no real issues here. I decided to add some gauges as seen in the attached.
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  10. #10
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    More rigging pics.
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  11. #11
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Here is the finished ship with an attempt to make a boat cover. Also attached is the float test. Next shots will be the first voyage.
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  12. #12
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Very Nice

  13. #13
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Here is what she looks like in the broken down ready to travel mode. Note the ballast placed in the fore ground with the spacer and rods.[8D]
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  14. #14
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Here she is on her dolly....I just pulled her out of the lake.
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  15. #15
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Here she is with 2 of the 3 square sails set. I sailed her in this configuration and I think I prefer her handling abilities without the squares. Man that is some UGLY wallpaper![:-]
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  16. #16
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    I almost forgot...this is very important and will save you a lot of muscle and possibly damaging your shipl. After you paint and before you try placing the ship on the keel rods, take the rods and push them in and out of the holes and let them wear in a nice loose hole. If you don't you will find that the ship will get stuck on them and is a real beast to remove. All that paint will tighten those holes. I almost broke my keel and had to roll the ship onto the floor on its side to get the halfway on and half way off ballast back off. DO NOT screw the keel rod holders (barrel and funnel) all the way down...leave half a turn or so. They will somehow tighten up when the ballast is hung from under the ship and you will have to take the pliers to them like I did....rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr![>:] One more thing, allow a few more than the 4 rod threads that are in the instructions at the top of the rods above deck. Mine both some how came up a little short.

    Ok...that is all!
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  17. #17
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Oh yea...if you didn't see the thread about what the storm did to my ship....you will want to leave a little more room for that mast and bow sprit to fit into their places and through the deck and bulwark if you plan to get them wet for extended periods of time. Wood expands when wet, even minwax treated wood...trust me on that!

    Carry on!
    Always choose the lesser of the two weevils!

  18. #18
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Everytime I think I'm done today...I remember something else. The dolly! Two things here...first it floats...I mean it really floats! All that wood and all that air in the tires make it hard to get out from under and back under the ship. I have to remember to place my foot on it. Also...the front cross support piece....it floats away everytime I use it. I need to pin it down somehow...but keep forgetting till I see it floating off. One more thing...the weight of the ship is enought to make it difficult to roll the dolly into a lake with a muddy or uneven bottom. A boat ramp would be better...if you don't slide all the way in on the slick concrete![sm=drowning.gif]
    Always choose the lesser of the two weevils!

  19. #19
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    Here she is underway.
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  20. #20
    hoghappy's Avatar
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    RE: Building details/photos of the 1/24 scale Prince de Neufchatel privateer.

    BTT...hey mod...please find a way to keep from losing this thread as it took a lot of work to place here. I also send others to this thread/sight form other sites to checkout.

    Thanks
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