Model ship

The naval model , or nautical, has for object the realization, and sometimes the use, of models of boats . He proposes models under glass (bottles or dioramas), models of old rigorously reproduced boats ( model of arsenal ), a simpler static modelism and dynamic model-making, generally radio-controlled.

Models of boats under glass

A bottle vessel is a model ship locked in a bottle of glass , serving as an object of decoration . Very common in the early xx th century , these representations were often the testimony of a sailor who wanted to show her around the ship on which he sailed.

Several models of boats are sometimes grouped together in a diorama , with maritime decoration, which protects them.

Modeling arsenal

Considered to be the crowning achievement of naval model making, the model making of the arsenal forces the model maker to respect in every detail not only the external appearance of the ship, but also the methods of construction of the various elements constituting the ship: frame, linings, interior fittings, rigging, going as far as to reproduce the techniques and devices of assembly and assembly of the original model, such as mortises and tenons, embedding of parts, studs and pins, caulking of bridges, fodder of ropes …

The arsenal modeler finds pleasure in the manufacture, as close as possible to the original model, of all the parts used in the composition of his model, even cutting his own wood from logs, and manufacturing himself. even its ropes with adequate diameters.

This activity requires searching for reliable sources of information in local, regional, national and international archives.

Static Naval Modeling

In the general public, naval model making often passes through plastic models of limited dimensions, a few tens of centimeters at most. Which represent all possible forms of watercraft with a measurable predilection for surface ships of contemporary military fleets.
Some enthusiasts practice their hobby enthusiasts around static models wooden generally old surface ships (mainly ships xv th to the xviii thcentury). One of the stakes of the expertise in this field is the reproduction of a lot of details at the level of both deck equipment and rigging (all the mats, spars, shrouds, and pulleys). An activity that, regardless of the scale of reproduction adopted, requires “fairy fingers”.
We can distinguish several levels of increasing difficulty in this type of model:

The kit 

Models sold in box.
The boxes normally contain all the necessary parts, including but not limited to hardware in wood or cast metal, and sometimes including, especially for beginner models, accessories such as paint, brush, glue tube, paper glass … These models are fast enough to mount, but generally fish with a simplified approach of many details, or a relative conformity with the original model.

The bashing kit 

Improvement of commercial kits.
This model is based on the kits, but the modeller modifies the content of the model provided, remaking some parts, adding others, completing and specifying the level of completion of the model thanks to information collected elsewhere, such as as the plans available from the Naval Museum .

The scratch 

From English scratchbuilt handmade, or pattern making on plan. With a little experience, the passionate model maker can start making scratch models (literally: from scratch ). All you need to do is start by obtaining a model plan, or better a monograph of the ship to be built, wooden boards of different thicknesses, a knife with a retractable blade (cutter), a manual coping saw and sandpaper . With experience, the acquisition of electrical machines will make the job more sophisticated. The Arsenal model is the most rigorous form of this technique.

RC model shipbuilding

This category is actually divided into 4 distinct sub-categories, all of them sailing:

  1. Models reproduction of an existing model or having existed but can also be imaginary.
  2. The models of speed, with electric motorization or with thermal engine.
  3. Sailing boats that is to say whose main propulsive force is the wind.
  4. Steam ships.

These different models are either made from scratch starting from plans of construction and made of wood, or fabric glass more resin and / or carbon depending on the types of models, either purchased kit to build, boxed, or more rarely already finished, a new fashion at some manufacturers.

Each sub-category is of course distinct from the others, because in each of them, there are still differences, such as radio-controlled sailing for example, which includes both models and race boats, totally different, with specific construction rules (gauge) for models that compete.

RCM covers everything that navigates with a radio control. The dimensions (independently of the scale) are often between 40 cm (below the stability of the boat is difficult to guarantee except on an abnormally calm water level) and two meters (transport becomes difficult beyond). All types of ships are then reproduced. Sailboats of any size (from 50 cm to 2 m) can mix the passion of a careful reproduction with a technical handling that varies according to the number of functions that the model maker has chosen to have on his model: for the simple 2-way sailboats are enough (sails and rudder), for others more complicated, additional functions are added to manage (among others) a genoa or gennaker, a pivoting keel, runners etc ..).

Examples of sailing class: class 1 meter for 1M sailboat, class M (yachts 1.27 m ), the Class 2M (trimarans 2 meters ) which are official gauges recognized by the federations French model shipbuilding (FFMN, FFV) and international ( ISAF ). The other gauges are purely friendly and have no official value … (like class RG65 (category for 65 cm sailboats for example);

More rarely, we observe the reproduction of submarines whose models can be radio controlled while remaining able to dive into static or dynamic. This practice remains limited by two main factors:

  • Water is relatively effective in the transmission of waves and limits the possibilities of remote control. The radio range in fresh water is only 3 to 4 meters deep. In salt water , the radio range is almost zero.
  • Underwater navigation is very risky in a small model where natural obstacles (algae, grass, sunken wood, rocks, etc.) can be a problem. We often prefer navigation in the pool or in a well-known water body and not too deep.

Main brands of model manufacturers

RC models

  • Graupner
  • robbe
  • Mantua
  • Harbor models California, United States
  • Model Slipway, United Kingdom
  • Amati
  • SOCLAINE
  • Billing Boats, Denmark (very detailed finishes)
  • CAP Models France
  • Joysway

Hardware and Accessories

  • CAP Models
  • Billing Boats
  • Graupner
  • robbe
  • Rivabo ( metal propellers )
  • Fvmodelism  [ archive ]

Static models

Wood models

  • Amati Modellismo
  • Miniature boats Leclerc, Quebec, Canada
  • Blue Jacket, Maine United States
  • Harbor models California, United States
  • Artesania Latina
  • Billing Boats
  • Constructo
  • Kiade models
  • Mantua
  • SOCLAINE

Plastic models

  • Heller
  • Lindberg

Carton Models

  • Cardboard boat race

Documentation / Plans

A good model can not be done without serious documentation. This one is often available, in the form of books, magazines, plans or on the net.

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