Friday, October 4, 2013

Sea Witch Update

I've spent part of this evening repairing some of the smaller parts, bits and what have you, and then turned my attention to the hull.
As I lamented before, the person who undertook this model such a long time ago used a lot of glue. So much, in fact, that I doubt that I will be able to remove all the vestiges of it. Still, this model is worth the effort, and I am working, cautiously, to remove as much of it as I can. I suspect that plenty of sandpaper will be used here shortly. 
Another problem has to do with any long, thin parts. As Lloyd McCaffrey complained about in his diatribe against polystyrene models, I see here; this model is exhibiting all of the deterioration that he predicted. Interestingly, I've got older models that don't show any problem like this. As recent experience with some model railroad equipment has taught me, though, is that the quality of polystyrene seems to vary. Some of the older models I have are rock hard brittle, others still fairly soft, none of them showing signs of warpage. 
Not so here. While the plastic has become brittle somewhat, the masts are now completely unusable, having become twisted and severely warped. As I normally do, they will be replaced with wood, probably birch and cherry. 
This is much harder than simply picking up a kit, granted. What makes this worthwhile isn't just that it is such a rare model, but the scale (about 1/120). This makes for a great compromise, not too big, not too small. I might one day pick up the Aoshima (Imai) Cutty Sark (1/120, though very pricey), or the slightly smaller Airfix kit (1/128). 
In the meantime, work proceeds, slowly.


  1. Reading this takes me back a few years ago to visiting my good shipmate and friend William Thomas Moore in his maritime store on East Bay St. in Charleston, SC. Bill was a well known historic ships model maker, and did restorations, some original 18th century even ones! His model [huge] of the Queen Anne's Revenge graces the restaurant by that name out on Daniels Island. Great memories! Good job too in tracking down the Nina in Spain!

    1. Sorry for the delay in responding, but thank you for the appreciation. Soon, I hope to be back to work on this, but the past couple of years have been a bit hard. Still, I hope to post some more.