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Scratch build HMS Resolution Class SSBN

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  • #46
    Originally posted by He Who Shall Not Be Named View Post
    Yes, parts I produce today are ready for degreasing and priming out of the tools. I'm that good at it.

    You? You're learning. Your work, currently, is unsymmetrical, rough, and the scribing is awful.

    So was my work in the beginning. Nobody comes out of the gate an expert.

    In the future you will look back on this current effort with horror and shame -- because by then you will have progressed so far ahead of what you started with that the difference between old and new work will stagger you.

    You are near completion of this piece -- then there will be another piece, and so on. With each new project you will bring to the table the lessons learned from the past. And your work will improve. In time, you will assume the mantle Joel and I now hold.

    You are learning techniques from the best; we, the current Masters of the Craft. With time, and study -- as Joel and I have -- you will become a master of this craft. The masters of today stand on the shoulders of the masters that came before us. It has always been that way. It always will be that way. The magic ingredients: dedication, and time.

    Go get 'em, Tiger! We're there to help when you need it.

    If your like me, I look at something I did a few weeks ago and thought it looked good to go after eons of work. Then after prouducing a slew of the item find that I end up tossing the initial work, deeming it now unacceptable, Because of asthetics of contnuity or accuracy. Other words If it dont look right, pitch it. My problem is, I cant just pitch it. I have to store it, for some un known usage later. Ma Hilde doesn like that. My cave is only 12x12 8ft hi. Im not alowed to cut limber holes on the kitchen counter anymore. Only pictures. Thinking of renting a storage shed or picking up a used ships container conex box cheap, and chopping a hole or two in the sides for a little wall banger a/c and some windows. There building some real nice sturdy houses out of the big ones. Stacking them and arranging them into geometric configuration, not unlike shipbuard compartmentation. My point being, its the same as the answer to the question the lost NYC tourest asks. How do you get to Carnagey Hall??? ans. PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE!
    Last edited by Von Hilde; 11-25-2014, 06:55 AM.


    • #47
      Dave would make a lousy politician. Being a straight shooter is a liability.

      Anyway getting back to it.

      I have finished working on the sail. Did some further scribing on the side. My moulds are simply not detailed enough to pick up every scribe line. I think Dave could probably write a whole gazette or do a video just on the art of doing good scribing. So some post part scribe work will be what I'll do to make up the difference somewhat. The holes drilled out into the top of the sail have been located away from where they could line up with the drainage holes in in the top of the side pieces. This means that you cannot look directly down through the sail. The only time they line up is where a mast needs to go through.

      These photos have shown how the sail has turned out. After plenty of wet and dry and then primer and more wet and dry to get the surface just right. After that then a shot of Satin black finish. This comes up quite nicely.

      The sail has a stainless steel bolt glassed in on a rectangular section of fibreglas board. It is then glassed in underneath the bottom of the sail mounted vertically. It extends lower than the sail so that the bottom of the bolt will protrude through the top of the missile deck. Then a nut will simply be attached and wound up underneath the missile deck to hold the sail down. The air pipe for the air pump will also extend further so that the nitro tube that comes from the Driver can be slipped over then end.

      The other photos show the master plug of the hull with the combined sail and missile deck. You can see I've made rough foreplanes just to get an idea of what it will look like.

      Monday is the first of December. That's 1/12/14 for all the Americans out there that have up to 30 months in the year. Ha. That means that I should hear back from my shadowy contact in the MOD (whitehall) about some declassified images of certain British SSBN's. I'm hanging on with baited breath. I'm also following Dave's advice and not provoking them futher because they might avoid the easy 'no' answer and give me some gems.

      Next installment will be where i look at working on the bottom of the boat. getting this smooth and scribing the vent lines.

      David H
      Attached Files


      • #48
        You are progressing. You are moving forward with the project. Excellent. Keep at it, Dave.

        "... well, that takes care of Jorgenson's theory!"


        • #49
          Back again,

          As mentioned in my last write up I was waiting with baited breath for the MOD to get bck to me with pics of the rear end of the Resolution class SSBNs. The response was dissapointing. They informed me that they were still considering my request for pictures of the Resolution class in drydock and they need a further month. They would get back to me in late december. How hard can this be! Is this just a delaying tactic to get me to give up? Is it really that hard? The french have put one of their SSBN's of similar vintage on display. So I really can't see any further justification in delaying or saying no. which they haven't said yet,.. fortunately.
          I don't see what is still so secretive about the back end of these boats.

          Anyway back to the build.

          I finally get to turn my attention to the bottom of the boat and where to put the ballast tank vents and other features. The problem that I have here is that I have virtually no information on the underside of these boats. It seems to be hard enough just getting dry dock pics of these boats I really don't think I'm going to get lucky with underhull arrangements.

          I have decided to go with square vents and clustered in groups. I have needed to consider the positioning of the mounts for the subdriver and the location of the forward cut line for the top of the hull.
          In order to try and get the vents consistent, I have made a scribing template. I have cut out a small aluminium plate with a square profile and simply used that as the template. Scribing into the PVC has been easy as the material is consistent. At either end where there has been pine it has been a little more challenging. It has invariably called for some filler now and then. Then some sanding down with wet and dry.

          I am finally at the point where the overall hull master is where I am happy with it. I have got as much detail in it that is practical for my moulding abilities and I have done all I can to get her as symmetrical as possible and consistent. I have scribed some extra moulding lines that run vertically down the forward hull and also some horizontal ones. I will not be detailing the boat with Anechoic tiles though.

          So after all the final checks on the hull master I am ready to start contruction of the mould box that I will use. This box will be made out of some laminated MDF kitchen benchtop that I scored from a friend whom had it lying around and was going to get chucked anyway. I see enough of it lying by the side of freeway on my way to and from work everyday that I could easily have found it there. The first task was to cut out the profile of the hull (vertical) so the the hull would sit inside, right down the centre axis. Then after this create a stiffening box around it to keep the board absolutely flat.

          Anyway, enough for now,

          David H
          Attached Files


          • #50
            Some shots to show how I proceed at this stage of the tool making:

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            "... well, that takes care of Jorgenson's theory!"


            • #51
              Thanks for the Pics dave.

              So now I am up to finishing the moulding board for the two main hull moulds. As mentioned the lower hull half is actually going to be a split mould, this is based on the flank array that runs down the lower section of the the hull and would create quite an undercut if I were to do it as a one piece mould. It could potentially be really hard to get out of the mould if done as one piece.

              Getting the board nice and stiff has been the priority. I have had to use some extra pieces screwed down just to get the reinforcment needed and to get the surfaces absolutely straight and flat. I have incorported bulged rounded dowel ends and glued them onto the vertical parting board. These will act as registration points for the split halves to align together after you have pulled the mould apart. They are a hassle to mould around however they are a must to get alignment right.

              Around the the edges of the master you can see the green pasticene that I have pressed around the edges to seal the master to the board. So once that's done it is a case of applying a few coats of PVA. I have never used waxes. I just haven't. I have found that PVA works well and will give me the detail very effectively. Then I mix up a get coat of sorts. I use polyester resin for my moulds. I have only used epoxy on my sailplanes. I have mixed in some orange pigment, going once again with that theme. I then add some talcum powder to get a nice thick initial coat on the master. Then when this is tacky I will lay up the first layer of cloth. I make sure there is a wide flange around the edge as this will support especially the registration bulges.

              The good thing is that I'm now on summer holidays (school teacher) so I have some more time to work on this model and should be able to post a few more frequent updates.

              Attached Files


              • #52
                Good solid model building here, Dave. Keep at it.

                "... well, that takes care of Jorgenson's theory!"


                • #53
                  Back again,

                  Well being on summer holidays has allowed me to move a bit quicker on this one. I have managed to pack about three weekends worth of work into a week.

                  Laying up moulds I find to be a very messy business. Polyester resin stinks , so obviously I work outside and usually most of the time there is a good breeze blowing across my driveway. This helps. The 25-38 degree days also help. Sometimes the resin is dry in about 15 minutes.

                  So the last photos show the initial layup and gel coats that I put down on the mould. The underside or lower section of the hull needed the most detail and was the most time consuming because of the split mould brought on by the two flank arrays that run dow the length of the lower hull. I initially layered up material around the tight radii as this is where the glass weave likes to pull away from the mould. I dont have vacuum bagging so have to get creative. I was given a whole bundle of fibreglass cloth, offcuts and longs strands of the glass by a work colleague who used to be a surfboard shaper. The long strands are usefull for laying top and bottom of the array and then laying up the weave over the top so there's less of a radius.

                  I also used a crude technique where I clamped a wooden dowell along the lenght of the array bulge and pressed both above and below it to stop the weave from delaminating and coming off the tight radius. I covered the dowell in sticky tape to stop it sticking to the resin. Generally worked.

                  I have used several layer of 6-8 ounce weave and then a layer of chopped strand which really sucked up the resin. That would be it. Producing a very rigid mould, but as David suggested I have also added increased stiffening in the form of plywood formers that run down the axis of the mould. Once I popped the lower half of the mould off the splitter board It revealed a really rigid mould.

                  As can be seen by the pics the flange is straight along the horizon that will become the partline.

                  Hopefully , (fingers crossed) the next time I write will be to say that the MOD in London has granted my requests to showing a bit more of the full size boats , backside. Hopefully in the form of declassified photos showing the rear fins and bulges. This would be fantastic as so far the response to my requests for information from the UK have been somewhat underwhelming.

                  dave. H
                  Attached Files


                  • #54
                    Good looking stuff, Dave. Keep plowing!

                    "... well, that takes care of Jorgenson's theory!"


                    • #55
                      Looks like DavidH knows what hes doing. Looks Great


                      • #56
                        Wow, there's an assumption. Thanks Greenman and HWSNBN.

                        Well amazing things do happen. I received an email from the MOD with a long awaited deliberation regarding the request for pictures to be declassified. They have sent several pictures in dry dock of the HMS Resolution. I've uploaded a sample. They did'nt quite give me photo's of the exact area that I wanted but it was better then nothing. They did'nt include pics of the top rear of the hull however they have given me more detail then I've ever had so that has been fantastic.

                        Now I have to work out how I'm going to 'retro scribe' some of these new details into my model and mould.

                        On with the build.
                        I have completed the bottom halves of the mould and am at this point poised to work on the top half mould. The single biggest mould part of the job. This top half is however easier than the bottom. It would not require any formwork and is a straighforward layup. Once again I put a thick get coat down to get a nice even surface and make sure that the mould would be consistently orange as has been the tradition. Once this layup is tacky I then laid down a couple of layers of 6-8 ounce weave from my large scrap pile. Then I finally laid down a layer of chopped strand. Man that stuff sucks up the resin! Onto my third tin of the polyester. This whole layup can be done quite quickly. Each layer taking about 20 minutes in this 30-35 degree heat.

                        I decided to put a stiffener running from the back of the bow section where the missile deck starts to where the stern drops away. This would stiffen the mould if I need to pull from the front, backwards. There were also the usual quarter circle stiffeners like what I used on the lower hull moulds.

                        Once I pulled to top mould away from the two bottom moulds I could see if all that hard effort and sweat had been worth it. The molds came away clean with only one or two areas where there was a little damage to the detail on the moulds or tiny bits of the mold stayed with the master.

                        The photos of the moulds that show the sanded light bits are where some reparis had to be done. Overall pretty happy.

                        Enough for now

                        David H
                        Attached Files


                        • #57
                          Good stuff. CSM uses about twice the amount of resin than cloth, however I always use it with polyester, and minimise my use of cloth. Multiple layers of cloth with polyester is not generally advised, as with polyester being an inferior glue to epoxy, it runs the risk of de-lamination. What they advise is to put a layer of CSM in between layers of cloth, because that holds much more resin, and it acts as a binder. Generally I don't use cloth at all with polyester unless making a very thin laminate.

                          Do you apply a layer of tissue over your gelcoat? I always do and find that prevents voids in the laminate between the gelcoat and subsequent layers of resin and glass.
                          DIVE IN! Go on, go on, go on, go on, GO ON!


                          • #58
                            Thankyou Subculture,

                            I have always used several layers of weave and haven't really encountered any problems yet. However It sounds like a good idea to intersperse layers of weave with chopped strand. Haven't had any de lamination problems.

                            Still havent heard from Ron Perrot.

                            Anyway getting to the job at hand. I've completed the two moulds and so far so good. They are reasonable. There are some minor blemishes and small areas where the gel coat has pulled away however with a little cosmetic work you can bring it back to good. The alignment pins work well and the flanges are dead straight and true which is essential. The two moulds are then held together by stainless steel bolts and butterfly nuts.

                            So now I put down a couple of layers of PVA release agent. Let those dry and then put down a nice thick gel coat. This time black. Allow that to go tacky after 20 minutes or so and then cut up strips of 6-8 ounce weave. I have also cut up some long strips and lay these up around the sides. This is to ensure that the edges near the part line are adequate and reinforced.

                            Laying up the lower hull which is a split mould means that it's highly likely that there would be some flashing along the line at the bottom of the mould where the two parts meet.

                            In order to make sure that there was enough cloth going into the trough created by the flank array I decided to use some of the fibreglass 'rope' or string. It's basically just long strands of fibrelgass that was given to me by a colleague at school who used to be a surfboard shaper. Pack it in and wet it up untill it's virtually flush with the edge of the trough at then lay weave and chopped strand over the top.

                            After laying up a few layers of weave I then finished of with a layer of chopped strand.This gives plenty of strength. Given time to cure it was then ready to pull from the mould. This is where the split really helps as I can take one side off at a time. You can see this from the photos. These two moulds came away relatively easily and the detail resolution was quite good. Once I got the second side off the part line appeared between the two molds. It was subtle and would simply need a stanley knife to remove the waste. Then simply a piece of wet and dry.

                            Enough for now

                            David H
                            Attached Files


                            • #59
                              Excellent work on those hard-shell tool elements! You're teaching me new tricks.

                              "... well, that takes care of Jorgenson's theory!"


                              • #60
                                I am enjoying your build. Thank you for documenting your work. Doing a lay up like this has been on my mind for awhile. This WIP is helping me get the courage to step up to the plate.
                                If you can cut, drill, saw, hit things and swear a lot, you're well on the way to building a working model sub.