Monthly Archives: December 2012

DeAgostini “Sovereign of the Seas” Progress

Up to Installment 11 of the build

I’ve posted build progress through Installment 11 at the build blog, “A Yankee Builds DeAgostini’s “Sovereign of the Seas“.



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Ships’ Plans from HAMMS, the Historic American Merchant Marine Survey

16-72 Crowley 21 2-4

An example HAMMS drawing

I’ve previously written about the Historic American Engineering Record (HAER), which seeks to document all kinds of historic engineering objects– but especially structures and ships. A forerunner of HAER is HAMMS, theHistoric American Merchant Marine Survey. HAMMS was a New Deal project intended to employ marine architects and surveyors. Much has been written elsewhere of HAMMS, and one of its biggest champions, Howard I. Chapelle, so I’ll only mention that it lasted about 18 months, 1936-1937, and yielded drawing sets for over 400 vessels, large and small.

The HAMMS collection is a wonderful resource for historians and ship modelers, but there’s a problem. Unlike the HAER works, which are indexed online and are freely available for download from the Library of Congress, the HAMMS material is held tightly by the Smithsonian and is by no means free.

I’ve posted some examples of HAMMS plans to give you an idea of what’s available… follow the link to the article:





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Road Cases for your R/C Models

Road case

I have always been jealous of static modelers’ display cases. My R/C models all sit in various plastic tubs designed for transporting the models safely to the lake, and for keeping dust off them when they’re in storage… but the travel cases don’t work for displaying the models on the shelf, just hiding them.

But then I stumbled upon suppliers of hardware for DIY road cases- mostly marketed to musicians who want to make their own roadie-safe cases on a budget, but also to low volume manufacturers of specialty cases. This hardware centers on robust aluminum extrusions for building case edges, and the “tongue-and-groove” lips where case halves (bottoms and lids usually) lock together. Also big on the list are special recessed latches which resist being bumped open, and metal stampings for reinforcing case corners.

Read all about this hardware and the 4-foot long travel/display case I built for my tugboat Dearborn at RC Groups:


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DeAgostini’s “Sovereign of the Seas” Post #02

The "first" installment

The “first” installment

I’ve agreed to review the Sovereign of the Seas kit from DeAgostini.  It should be interesting– while I am an experienced model builder, I have not been building “age of sail” display models, so much of this will be new to me. And as the installments will come to me at an undisclosed pace (due to my remote location from DeAgostini’s usual customer base), the excitement of waiting for the mailman will be even more acute than for those in the UK.

Full disclosure: The price of the review kit is my attention to the build and continued blog postings… but I receive no other compensation. And I can be a honest as I like about what I find… which hopefully will be apparent to my readers.

Due to my late start here, the first installment arrived with the first thirteen packets… normally, I believe, these arrive every week or two, allowing you to take on this large elephant of a model a bite at a time.

To avoid cluttering up this blog with all the details of the build, I’ve started a separate blog just for this build:
A Yankee Builds DeAgostini’s “Sovereign of the Seas”. It’s already well begun, take a look!


My previous Post, SotS #1

DeAgostini SotS website

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