by Bob Wilson


American steamship built by The Consolidated Steel Co. Wilmington U.S.A. in 1944 as the CAPE KUMUKAKI. With a gross tonnage of 6,711, she had a length of 396.5 feet, a beam of 60.1 feet and a depth of 25.8 feet.

After the war she was bought by the Isbrandtsen Line and re-named FLYING ENTERPRISE. She became internationally famous in early 1952 when she sank off Falmouth after a long and desperate battle to get her into port after her cargo had shifted in a gale in the North Atlantic.

I obtained the plans from the August 1941 issue of THE MOTOR ship which reviewed the class (standard design C2). There are some good photographs of the drama unfolding on The model (No longer in my possession) was completely scratch built to a scale of 32 feet to one inch . There are no shop bought parts in it.



A fine example of a British Tea Clipper. This small full-rigged ship was built by Charles Connell & Co, Glasgow in 1865. With a length of 192 feet and a beam of 31.5 feet, she had a net tonnage of 815.

I obtained the plans from page 167 of the book The Tea Clippers, Their History & Development 1833 1875, by David R. MacGregor.

The model (No longer in my possession), was completely scratch built to a scale of 32 feet to one inch. The hull was built up bread-and-butter fashion from 1/8th inch obeche. The masts and rigging are 100 per cent metal. The masts and spars being of brass tube, rod and copper wire. The rigging, including ratlines is completely made from enamelled copper wire.


I am often asked how I blacken the rigging wire. No great mystery I use a thick black felt-tipped marker pen!

The display case were made from 3mm acrylic with a base border of 18mm pine quadrant and chestnut veneer corner edging. The acrylic was cut on a small band saw and stuck together with Hard Plastic Adhesive, whilst the quadrant beading was screwed on from the inside of the case base. The chestnut veneer was stuck on using Evostik Contact Adhesive. The acrylic comes with a protective sheet on both sides. This is left on whilst it is assembled, only the edges being cut off where the veneer is to go. The woodwork is also spray lacquered (Halfords automobile supplies U.K.) whilst the protective coating is still on. Finally, run a scalpel along the wood veneer edges before peeling off the backing from inside and outside. Clean with an anti-static cleaner (Maplin Electronics stores)

I find it sad that in the year 2003 there is so little interest shown by model makers in scratch built miniatures.

Thank you for your interest
Bob Wilson