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"Scratch Built 1/1200 USS Chesapeake 38 Gun Frigate" Topic

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Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian looks at some new terrain products, which use space age technology!

2,594 hits since 19 Jan 2017
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Volunteer Fezian19 Jan 2017 7:57 p.m. PST

The USS Chesapeake, a ship no one seems to manufacture for some reason. Its famous foe HMS Shannon is easy to find, but not Chesapeake. So I decided to build my own.

Inspiration painting:


The plans scaled to 1/1200:






Comparison Shot left to right: Langton Essex, Scratch Chesapeake, GHQ Constellation


Full build at link

HP2Sport19 Jan 2017 10:29 p.m. PST

Good skills. Nicely done.

Oberlindes Sol LIC Supporting Member of TMP19 Jan 2017 10:43 p.m. PST


mad mac20 Jan 2017 4:17 a.m. PST

What a lovely job, ans good to see your build process.

ModelJShip20 Jan 2017 5:07 a.m. PST

I like a lot these ships scratch built. You have good skills.

whitejamest20 Jan 2017 6:47 a.m. PST

Absolutely fantastic Vol! How long do you think the process took start to finish?

capncarp20 Jan 2017 10:48 a.m. PST

Where did the plans come from?

Frantic20 Jan 2017 11:11 a.m. PST

Very nice!

devsdoc20 Jan 2017 7:35 p.m. PST

Master (Model) shipbuilder, Great ship, lovely photo's.
Be safe

jowady20 Jan 2017 7:56 p.m. PST

A very nice build of a hard-luck ship.

Volunteer Fezian21 Jan 2017 12:37 p.m. PST

Thank you gentlemen, your comments are much appreciated.

capncarp: I peruse the following sites for the plans I download




link (at the left side of the screen "Browse By" select the "Collections" arrow, then scroll down to "Ship Plans")


And then there is always Pinterest

Brechtel198 Supporting Member of TMP23 Jan 2017 10:03 a.m. PST

Very well done.

Kevin in Albuquerque23 Jan 2017 7:26 p.m. PST


Rockatansky09 Feb 2017 2:03 p.m. PST

Vol, excellent as always!

A while back I mentioned doing a similar scratch build of L'Hermione, and unfortunately I got sidetracked from it and put it down for a good while, but I definitely am doing it, and in fact it's nearly done except for the rigging.

One big question, among others, is what do you use for the shrouds/ratlines? are they pre-made pieces? I know I have seen some rigging done on these models and people still use the ratlines available from kits. But I assume you made yours?

That's really the last thing I'm worried about on the build coming out somewhat realistic-looking.

Volunteer Fezian09 Feb 2017 10:12 p.m. PST



I found two different sized meshes at Hancock Fabrics that is much better for these small ships. Below is a comparison photo. The two on top are the Hancock Fabric meshes and the one on the bottom is the screen mesh. I use the smaller mesh for sloops, brigs, cutters, etc. And I now use the medium size for everything else. The screen is really too big. I have gone over many times how I make the ratlines on my blog.
Try link or this one link

Rockatansky10 Feb 2017 6:47 a.m. PST

awesome! i figured you probably had a how to on there somewhere. i just didn't dig deep enough. i'll check the fabric store this weekend and see what i can come up with. i have some really fine mesh material that just wont work. its too fine, plus when i try to cut it that small the weave falls apart.

other than that i'm super happy with how it's turning out. i'll have pics up soon! just a little more rigging to do and it's done

Volunteer Fezian10 Feb 2017 10:40 p.m. PST

The mesh I use is from Hancock Fabrics, 4" Medium Heading 8540CL, skew# 3126042 at $1.59 USD/yard. The strands are thicker in one direction than they are in the other, so orientation is thick for shrouds, thin for ratlines. I spray paint it black. It will in deed fall apart when you cut it, so I also spray it with a cheap hairspray and let it dry thoroughly before cutting. The hairspray is a great fixative for all kinds of stuff. I also use it on terrain.
Good luck. Our Hancocks closed up business last year so I bought 3 yards of it, enough for about a thousand ships!

Rockatansky11 Feb 2017 10:59 a.m. PST

well we don't even have hancocks, so hopefully the fabric store here will have something comparable.

hairspray is a good idea! it's amazing how many things lying around the house manage to be so useful for modelling haha!

and one of the things i love about doing small scale miniatures is that pretty much any consumable material you buy for it is enough to do dozens if not more of a particular model! yards of thread, bottles of paint, etc. one sheet of letter sized paper is enough to make fleets worth of sails!

Rockatansky11 Feb 2017 7:59 p.m. PST

i was reading the comments at the end of the blog, and i'm curious, are you going to tell us what the glaring error is haha??

Volunteer Fezian12 Feb 2017 11:03 p.m. PST

Nope! ;-)

Rockatansky13 Feb 2017 2:53 a.m. PST

Grr! well i made several on mine too, which i'm sure will be easier to spot. i want to start a thread but i can't figure out how to add images. am i just going to have to use an image hosting site and post a link there?

devsdoc13 Feb 2017 5:40 p.m. PST

I know how you feel. About the I.T.stuff on this site (adding images) and the "Glaring Error"
Be safe
P.S. What is am image hosting site and how does it work?

Rockatansky13 Feb 2017 6:59 p.m. PST

an image hosting site is basically what it sounds like. you upload pictures to it and they get stored there in galleries and others can visit it to see the pics. imgur and photobucket are a couple examples. im not sure which ones you need to create an account to use, but most are free.

devsdoc14 Feb 2017 12:10 p.m. PST

Thanks Rockatansky.
I must have a look. It will be in a week or so. I must find a way. Vol has tried to help me. I'm a dip-stick in I.T. stuff
Be safe

Rockatansky14 Feb 2017 6:50 p.m. PST

oh don't worry, i'm not all that tech savvy. i know how to upload pics and copy and paste links, thats about it. for instance, last night my computer decided to go black and i haven't figured out whats wrong yet. its on and running, but no picture. i have no clue what's wrong! and that's where all my images and google bookmarks are for plans ha

Volunteer Fezian15 Feb 2017 10:28 p.m. PST

Are you running Windows 10? It seems to do that quite a bit.

Rockatansky16 Feb 2017 6:28 a.m. PST

haha no actually its windows 7. its an older computer. i saw it go black and paid no attention because i figured it was just going to sleep mode. then when i clicked the mouse and nothing happened i knew something was up haha

Volunteer Fezian15 Apr 2017 11:36 a.m. PST

James White,

So sorry I missed your question. I would estimate a full 10 hours of work to complete this model. Spaced over several days of course.


whitejamest16 Apr 2017 7:59 a.m. PST

Hey Vol,

Wow that's actually a lot faster than I had expected, given how much you did on it. You not only do beautiful work, you power through it. Well done sir!

epengr18 Apr 2017 8:08 p.m. PST

Hmmm… Is it me, or are there a couple of steps missing between "The plans" and "Results"?


Amazing work. This is where I thing, eventually, I may show my 3D prints to shine. Realistically, the hull doesn't matter that much. Excellent rigging so what makes a models. You have both, but is I can print a mediocre hull and rig it well, I believe that I can hide the hulls failings…

I had some mesh from a fabric store discount bin laying around that I've played with, but it was hexagonal (grabbed it thinking of chain link) and I gave up on it. Now I want to go to a fabric store…

Amazing work.

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