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Author Topic: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer  (Read 5908 times)

Dave J

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Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« on: August 21, 2014, 07:25:39 pm »

This once working model was in a sorry state, over the years nearly all the fittings had been removed and lost, only  the guns and launcher remained. The hull was intact with the original paintwork part removed, the pair of electric motors were solid and not recoverable. I was donated this model as a challenge to refurbish or it would be put in the scrap bin.
The model which is 41.5" long and had been built from a kit and the main components hull, superstructure guns etc have been made from balsa wood.
I decided to base the model on the H.M.S. Devonshire which was the first of class and built at Cammell Laird's shipyard in the 1960 era. I got a set of plans from Jacobin of H.M.S. Fife, 1/96 scale (1966 era) which is the same class and clearly show some of the missing similar details for the fittings which I would need for the Devonshire.
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Dave J

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #1 on: August 25, 2014, 11:41:21 am »

The hull and superstructure were sanded down and any indentations were filled with  P38 filler and sprayed with Halfords gray paint. One problem was small areas of the old original paint reacted with the spray coat and started to bubble through. When dry these areas were gently rubbed down and hand painted which solved the problem. The lower hull then was hand painted with Humbrol red satin paint and the boot topping black waterline was added. At this stage I tried the hull in the test tank with all the loose internal equipment, motors, radio main sealed lead acid battery etc and necessary lead ballast to float the hull to the correct waterline. With the superstructure on the model appeared to be top heavy only the slightest touch and it rolled from side to side very easily. to try and improve the balance I have put a centre metal keel and bilge keels which improved the balance.
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Dave J

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2014, 07:02:27 pm »

The Devonshire had 5 ships boats, 4 launches and 1 open cutter all supported on davits. To keep the topside weight down I carved the boats out of medium grained balsa, painted with sanding sealer and painted each one with Humbrol paint. The davits have been cut out of plastic card on a band saw and then painted.
The A and B forward 4.5 gun mountings (which had been made from balsa) had the joystick lookout position added and have been pegged and glued to the forward decks. The aft Sea Slug launcher had missile launch rails added and extra support tubing on the frame structure, with plastic rod and card and glued with cyno and was then hand painted. I was able to get numerous photographs off the internet and various reference books which helped to show the Devonshire detailfor these fittings.
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Dave J

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2014, 09:22:35 pm »

The aft large radar unit has been turned on the lathe out of aluminium and mounted on plastic base. The side supports and small raised deck are from plasticard with etched rails. The unit was hand painted and the attached to the aft structure. The main mast radar has a single line of reflection units later county class ships had the double row versions. The first attempt I made from fine aluminium mesh on to a wood and plasticard frame work. I glued this together with cyno but unfortunately I put to much glue on which went on to the mesh. I then sprayed it matt black which highlighted the excessive glue, it did not look right so a second one was made, with a lot of care with the amount of glue used and only a light coat of paint, when dry this was glued in a fixed position on the top of the mast structure. The helicopter was purchased as a kit from Mark1 models. at 1/144 scale I found the model which was a British Anti-Submarine Helicopter very detailed and I found assembling and painting this scale model hard but the end result looks realistic when positioned on the aft helicopter pad deck.
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rsm

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2014, 09:26:34 pm »

Good job. Looks good.  :-))
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Roger

Dave J

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2014, 02:20:35 pm »

Thanks Roger,
It seems to take longer to write about than what I plan to do!

Dave
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Dave J

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2014, 03:40:13 pm »

The bow forcastle deck on the original model did not have any anchors fitted these required recesses into the deck and hull sides to house the stockless anchor, also the hawsepipes had to be drilled and lined with plastic tube, capstans have been turned from dowel and chain added from the anchors, round the capstans to the locker storage positions. The breakwater was cut from thin ply and glued to the deck with two part epoxy. Large bollards and enclosed fairleads have also been fabricated and glued in position. The forward deck has been painted with matt green paint, the breakwater matt gray, the chain matt white and also the capstans bollards and enclosed fairleads matt white. The numerous inflatable which sit on cradles (single and double banked) along the edge of the deck midships near to the davit positions have been made from dowel painted matt white and glued to the deck. From midship to the A and B gun positions the deck is wood, to represent planking I experimented with pen lines on thin ply but to the scale of 1/150 I could not get the correct impression of the planking then I managed to get length of thin veneer, light in colour and with straight grain lines which when fitted represented the planked deck, this was glued to the original deck and the coated with clear matt varnish.
The two Sea Cat launchers have been constructed and sit on the deck midship near the heli pad deck
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Mad Scientist

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2014, 10:28:25 pm »

This brings back memories - I joined HMCS Margaree in early 1984, and quickly learned that my Yeoman was a huge fan of all things RN. He was also an artist, and, to that end, had 'acquired' a copy of an RN publication which contained the standard for the external appearance of all RN ships. AND, it used a County class destroyer as an example.

3 decades later (and especially since I joined MBM), I'm still kicking myself that I didn't make a photocopy. :((

Tom
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Dave J

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #8 on: August 28, 2014, 07:41:18 pm »

Tom,
When I was researching for information on the County Class Destroyers I came across a paper back book by chance, which at first glance I did not think it would provide the detail I was looking for. It had a number of b/w photographs which were interesting, but when I read the book it was a very good descriptive text of life on board during the Falklands  war 1982 on HMS Glamorgan. The book is called "Ordeal By Exocet" by Ian Inskip. published by Chatham Publishing.
Dave.
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Dave J

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2014, 12:59:37 pm »

To finish the fittings, the upper half of the front mast had to be completed out of dowel, brass rod, the cross spars have been soldered and painted matt white.The whole assembly has been glued to the top of the mast box section. The side spars have also been added to the main mid section mast structure. To complete the decks, brass etched hand rails have been positioned on the edge of the hull deck and superstructure decks, these have been glued with cyno and painted with matt paint, these rails have proved to be fragile and I have to be careful when I carry the model.
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Dave J

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #10 on: August 29, 2014, 04:19:37 pm »

To complete the model the drive system and r/c had to be installed, the original propellers and shafts had only to be cleaned up and re greased to be acceptable. The two 12volt brushed motors have been wired in parallel and fitted with flexible couplings to the shafts, A servo was added for the rudder, a suitable speed control unit coupled to 2.4 radio system receiver and in a midship compartment the 12volt 1.3amp hour sealed lead acid battery. The model was placed in the test tank and floated on the intended waterline, the radio functioned correctly and at this stage looked promising. At the lake side a slight breeze caused problems the model tended to heel and would not answer to the rudder except when going into the wind. this was a disappointing outcome.
To solve the steering problem extra rudders have been cut from brass sheet and positioned each side of the existing rudders directly behind the propellers, these two rudders have then been linked with brass strip control rods to the original rudder. The unstable heeling problem was rectified by cutting a hole in the bottom of the hull to  be able to position the battery to lower the centre of gravity. A box was made open to the inside of the hull and glued with two part epoxy the edges blended in with P38 filler and then painted black. The battery had to have a extention glued to the top to enable have battery to be removed after being lowered into the hull. With these modifications back on the lake the model sailed without any steering problems or heeling, which was a great improvement and now the model balances on this battery box with no need for a separate stand. All I have to do now is to make a plastic dust cover for storage when the weather is unsuitable to sail
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ballastanksian

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #11 on: September 03, 2014, 10:28:27 pm »

Now that is one impressive destroyer model! Thanks for the step by step ressurection. It came out a treat. I am glad I am not the only one who brush paints (I do dabble with an airbrush once in a blue moon) for the finish, though I use rattle cans for priming etc.
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hmsantrim

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2014, 05:40:23 pm »

Hi Dave.
 Nice refurb of the PBM County  :-)) .  I have have the origonal build plan which you could have had a copy of if you asked.
 The partner to this a Type 42 is on flea bay just now if you want the pair.
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Model-of-Type-42-Destroyer-/271594488905?pt=UK_ToysGames_RadioControlled_JN&hash=item3f3c4b0449
 Frank
photo 1_zps04740218.jpg
 
photo 4_zps9d0aac22.jpg
 
photo 3_zps463aa0d2.jpg
 
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Dave J

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Re: Refurbishing County Class 1/150 Scale Destroyer
« Reply #13 on: September 10, 2014, 07:31:10 pm »

Hello Frank,
I had not seen the plans of the original county class destroyer, I was surprised they are "stand off scale" and do not show the fittings in detail, when I received the model I assumed the fittings had been removed. I have been pleased with the HMS Fife 1/96 scale drawings which gave me the choice of how far I could go with making the detail at 1/150. Which was on my limits for size. The length of the model 41.5" for me was good for handling purposes and easy to store at home.
Dave.
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