Model Boat Mayhem - Forum

Dry Dock / Shipyard: Builds & Questions => Yachts and Sail => Topic started by: goBulawayo on August 23, 2012, 10:13:47 PM

Title: Scale Yacht models
Post by: goBulawayo on August 23, 2012, 10:13:47 PM
Hi All, are there common scales that scale models of yachts are built to? I am looking to build a model of a yacht that was built in Rhodesia (where I am from) and was raced in the 1979 Cape to Rio yacht race. I am looking to find out what scales various fittings are made to, such as windlasses, winches, bollards etc - Not sure as yet whether to RC the model

Many thanks

Title: Re: Scale Yacht models
Post by: tobyker on August 23, 2012, 11:41:47 PM
Hi Wayne - I don't think there are a lot of scale sailing boat fittings about, and if there are, the scales they are available in will force a scale and hence size of model, on you.  It might be more realistic to choose the sort of length you want the model to be, which will give you a scale relative to the full size, and then make the fittings based on the plastic brass and wood sections available from modelling sources - not forgetting useful round things like cassette tape rollers etc. Commercially available winches etc are never going to be exactly right, and to my mind a good scratchbuilt attempt at a representation of a fitting always looks better than a bought incorrect fitting plonked on the deck. If you need to make chainplates or other rigging mounting points which will need to have some strength, get some thin brass sheet and find out about silver soldering - if you find a decent little torch and flux, it works better for me than soft soldering. There's my two penn'orth!
Title: Re: Scale Yacht models
Post by: goBulawayo on August 24, 2012, 09:41:52 AM
Thanks tobyker - I had thought of a model of a metre length which is 1/14 however had bits been available in say 1/15 I would have sacrificed 8cm to build it 1/15 - As I am going to have to assume what some parts look like, such as windlasses etc I figured off the shelf parts would have helped, I do not have a lot to go on. It does look like I will have to go the scratchbuilt path though.
Title: Re: Scale Yacht models
Post by: tigertiger on August 24, 2012, 12:41:34 PM
I agree with tobyker

The first consideration is the size of model. Over 1m can be really difficult to transport without special considerations to vehicle or breakdown of the model. Most models are 1m or under, giving a wide range of scales on the lake.
Once you have a rough size you can work to a rough scale.  1:12, 1:15, 1:16, 1:30 etc. You can work to the nearest convenient scale for parts/figures that are available. Model railways or military models are a good source, as well as people like George Turner who makes nautical models of gear and figures.

For many items on a working boat there is no scale as such. For example, deadeyes would be the right size for the size of vessel. There are a lot of scale parts available from The Model Dockyard, and they sell deadeyes by size, i.e. 3-4-5-6mm etc. You pick the size that is right for your model. Same goes for ships wheels.

For most working models, many modellers opt for a 'stand off' level of detail. That is it looks right from a distance, but would not stand up to close measuring. There are modellers who go to extremes of detail, but for most of us there is a compromise between detail accuracy, working parts of the model, costs, and build skills. The other thing to consider is the fragile nature of some of the details you may want to add.

Also rememember that for working boats, the crew often made their own tackle and bits and bobs with available materials, and so every bucket or pole (for example) could be different sizes.