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  • "Golden Bear" started this thread

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1

Friday, July 20th 2007, 5:24pm

Massena, French Pre-Dreadnought Battleship, 1:400, Scratch build

For the few pre Dreadnought lovers around here, I want to share my new build of the battleship Massena. She has marvelous extreme tumblehome and a beautiful long bow. She was built and completed in the 1890s and seems to have incorporated at least one of the lessons of earlier French ships by having almost no superstructure.

I've been incorporated my learnings from my first attempt, the Hoche, so that hopefully this build will go more smoothly. If my plans work out it should be fairly straightforward to turn it into a kit. If so it will come out before the Hoche does since the latter needs a complete redesign before it can be a kit.

One of my goals was an improved hull frame structure. I've made it completely interlocking to remove any possibility of misalignment and also, hopefully to reduce chances of warping. The first picture shows the framing assembled (without glue) and the second picture shows it partially disassembled to display the interlocks. The spacing of the cross frames is chosen in order to allow building of shallow internal structures behind the hull sides.


Carl
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Royaloakmin

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Friday, July 20th 2007, 7:06pm

RE: Massena, French Pre-Dreadnought Battleship, 1:400, Scratch build

There may not be many of us pre-dreadnought fans out here, but we sure do appreciate what you are doing with the French battleship builds. I for one hope you clean up the Hoche and make it available.
best regards
mit herzlichen grussen

Fred

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Friday, July 20th 2007, 8:36pm

RE: Massena, French Pre-Dreadnought Battleship, 1:400, Scratch build

Golden Bear,

it is so great this will become a whole series of those most unusual ships! Frankly I doubt royaloakmin's opinion that there aren't many pre-dreadnought enthusiasts around here at kartonbau.de. On the contrary I am quite sure that most of the site's active members, including me, really appreciate your work and very attentively follow your reports. I am the more sure of this since your reports are not merely building reports of known kits but construction reports which makes them even more interesting. So please keep up the good work and be assured that we all here are most eager to watch your progress. If you really make up your mind to publish your models as kits I am sure you will have a good deal of request by us.

Simon
Wiedereinstieg in den Kartonbau nach vielen Jahren ...

  • "Golden Bear" started this thread

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Saturday, July 21st 2007, 12:57am

Thank you both for the kind words. I would like to find a way to share my work with folks... unfortunately some bad experience with free models has discouraged me from this. If I have success with the Massena I will go back to redo the Hoche. However, there are still lots of other ships that I want to build!



Carl

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Saturday, July 21st 2007, 1:58am

Hoi Carl,

As you are endouvering the species I am instantly encouraged to have discovered one of my friends in naval history. As you are exploiting one of the facts of DESIGN incorporated in its time (Jugendstil, Art Deco) as people on the brink of society expressed themselves, especially in France, clears just our respect to the outmost expression of society those days. I can just say: those wonderful pieces of art, as they appear to me.....How could this happen,,,,It happened.....being breathless....astonished....

The Fin de Siècle attitude must have been something completely different to our rationalised attitude to serious matters....

As ships of the Emperial German Navy, like Scharnhorst e.q. thoughts must have been guided by esthetical principles to lead to the design...

I am very pleased by your efforts, hopefully we, as being addicted, might have the opportunity to build your ships,

Grateful,
Gert
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Saturday, July 21st 2007, 9:53pm

Salut Carl!
I'm very happy to see you again with a pre-dreadnough. Please continue! It' a shame, you are starting that thrad while I can't follow, because I have to go abroad for 3 weeks;HOLLYDAYS :D
Andreas

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Tuesday, July 24th 2007, 11:25am

Massena

Hola Carl:

Glad to see that you are proceeding with your French predreadnought construction program. We all look forward to your progress updates. I know I am getting ahead of things, but as a naval attache of a friendly navy, I would like to know what your proposed building program consists of (what are your thoughts of additional projects in the future).

  • "Golden Bear" started this thread

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Tuesday, July 24th 2007, 6:47pm

Hey Greg! Future building plans? Hmm. Realistically? I would like to cover all the different pd French BBs up until they get boring. Also, several of the interesting cruisers. Then, some of the British BBs and a couple of token cruisers. Eventually, if I keep after it I'll do some U.S. ships and some Russian ships. None of these will be later than 1905.

Is it a concern if we overlap?


Carl

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Wednesday, July 25th 2007, 1:51pm

The challenge for this model will the fitting of the side barbette/turrets correctly into the sides. While I work on coloring the pieces I'm also grappling with the technique for managing this. Here are a couple "in process" shots to show some of the design technique. The first shows the pieces loosely assembled. You can see how the side guns will need to fit into cutouts in the hull side. By the way, this is one place where you don't want to color edges! The sides of the square ports are supposed to be white.

The second picture shows the thing partially disassembled. Note that the partial decks at bow and stern interlock with the frames.


Carl
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G Shoda

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Wednesday, July 25th 2007, 10:01pm

pictures

Your tumblehome looks great as do the printed parts you made. They look "simply marvelous." I just printed out the plans for the Massena from the French archive service last night. You must have done a lot of work to convert those to your final product. My hat is off to you.

Looks like you have some tricky parts ahead of you. I have a suggestion: Glue the edge of the waist gun deck to the hull side piece & before gluing the hull side piece in place, fiddle with the height & positioning of the support for the waist gun deck. Doing it that way can reduce warping & wrinking. Also, the support for the waist gun deck should not be made too strong (built to allow some give) so as to allow last minute corrections in height.

As I mentioned earlier, I expect that the tough parts will be the snout & the stern. No suggestions from me on those areas as compound curves are not my forte.

I think Massena & Charles Martel are my favorite French battleships. Looking forward to your updates.

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Thursday, July 26th 2007, 12:23am

Greg, I think that is sort of what I have planned. If you look closely you will see that the cut out lines are marked on the side already and I've tested them for fit - they are pretty good. I'm going to assemble the entire turret assembly before installing them, but possibly cut a little short since I can always shim the base before gluing. The cutout assemblies will be attached before gluing in the side. I'm not certain about whether to put on the "lid," the top deck before gluing the sides. I usually like to. After test fitting the turret assemblies and getting them right, I'll glue in the side and then slide in the turrets afterwards. We'll see.

I guess that I have not spent enough time yet on the bow since it seemed ok on my preliminary test fit. I've down a test fit on the stern and it actually looks good except that it came out a little short.

Those compound curves are difficult but they look so very nice on the models!


Carl

P.S. I also really like the Charles Martel. Do you have a line on any plans for it?

This post has been edited 1 times, last edit by "Golden Bear" (Jul 26th 2007, 12:35am)


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Thursday, July 26th 2007, 5:15pm

I've made a prototype of one of the side turrets. The assembly for allowing it to turn is difficult to assemble, however, and would be even more difficult on the smaller turrets. I've got a redesign in the works to make it more buildable.


Carl
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Saturday, July 28th 2007, 2:30pm

Turret design has been occupying my time recently. My first design used a layered disk approach to allow the turrets to turn. However, that was very difficult to put together correctly in the tall skinny tubes of the bases. I've worked to a different technique which is much simpler and buildable for the smaller turrets particularly. I'm simply using a tube that is constrained by appropriate holes in the turret base... shown in the second picture. Each of the small turrets takes me about an hour to put together.


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  • "Golden Bear" started this thread

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Tuesday, July 31st 2007, 2:40pm

After much efforting and refitting, I managed to assemble an entire side along with turrets. One of these pictures shows the turrets swung out, to demonstrate that they turn. THe bow pieces fit surprisingly well although the recess around the forward secondary turret is kind of chunky.

I also tried to repair the gap at the back of the center hull section but without much luck. I've decided to do a rebuild in order to have cleaner hull sides so I'll be set back a little bit in time.
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Tuesday, July 31st 2007, 6:23pm

Hello Carl,

great work! It's really hard to believe that there ever existed so strange looking a ship. To be honest I can't see the reason why you would prefer to rebuild the hull. But do whatever you like as long as you continue your construction ...

Simon
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Tuesday, July 31st 2007, 8:30pm

Golden Bear:

Looks good so far! The hull is the hardest part, I think, with all the waist turrets & complex curves. I admire your determination to get the hull right, regardless of the hours & hours of extra work that entails. This is an area that I need improvement in.

Did you solve the bow using two pieces of card?

Do you mind if I ask, how hard is it to use Rhino? Your results are excellent. I am too cheap to buy a graphics program, but I was curious.

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Tuesday, July 31st 2007, 8:46pm

Hey, Simon. I just don't like that big gap in the hull side. I've solved it by making the center hull piece into one continuous segment.

Greg, there is actually a small break between the upper and lower parts of the bow so I did use two separate pieces. It took a little bit of fitting and redrawing but I was surprised at how easy it actually turned out to be. That stern is difficult however. I found Rhino to be incredibly easy to pick up. I've used CAD software a lot in my job over the years so it was simply a matter of looking for the commands that would allow me to do the things that I want to do. The "smash" command for making flat pieces out of surfaces causes distortions that you need to account for when laying things out. I've found that breaking continuous surfaces into smaller bits, smashing them, and then reassembling them works better for keeping dimensions constant.


Carl

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Wednesday, August 1st 2007, 2:42pm

Some progress pictures of the rebuild. The first shows the new design assembled frame in stealth black. I got tired of coloring behind open ports and whatnot and just decided to do the whole thing in black. It will also hide any stray gaps. In the second picture I have fully attached the near (port) side and started on the starboard. They v.2 build behind it offers comparison for the neatness of the side now that it is built as a single piece.


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Friday, August 3rd 2007, 2:44pm

Now the sides are attached and I can proceed to finishing the side turrets. The bow still looks nice I think. The second pictures displays my next attempt at a system to allow the turrets to turn. It is both very stable and easy to build with little tiny turrets. It is simply a sleeve that fits inside the outer tube. By making it a snug fit I allow the turret to turn easily but without worrying about any tilt or wobble.


Carl
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Jan Hascher

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Friday, August 3rd 2007, 2:49pm

Hi Carl,
the black structure is actually a really neat idea. I like that.

Cheers
Jan
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Friday, August 3rd 2007, 8:17pm

Hello Golden Bear,


all I can say is that I am enjoying your constructions tremendously. The models shape up great.

But on the thought, that these great models will not be available, I could weep.

Keep up the great work !

Zaphod

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Saturday, August 4th 2007, 6:10am

Zaphod, I am working on the Masséna with the plan that the parts will be ready for a kit when I am done. It slows down the build somewhat but I think that it is worth it. The problem is the Hoche. It cannot possibly be made into a kit without entirely redoing it. I personally would rather build something new than go back to it and thus it may be a while before it gets done. Just keep thinking good thoughts for the Masséna and I'll attempt to get it available.



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Saturday, August 4th 2007, 10:17pm

Hello Carl,


these are great news indeed !


Zaphod

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Sunday, August 5th 2007, 2:40pm

Of course your realize that if this does become a kit that you will need to build 12 separate turrets! :)

...and I have completed 10 of them. All the barrels are rolled also. I still need to work on the more complicated forward secondary turrets but I feel that I have accomplished a lot just to get this far! I also rebuilt the bow pieces just ahead of the positions of the secondary turrets so that the big slab vertical pieces look correct - compare these pictures to the last set. I am looking forward to finishing with the hull pieces and moving on to something else!


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Sunday, August 5th 2007, 7:10pm

Hello Carl,

every time this built grows it looks more unique. If I wasn't aware of the fact that this ship really existed I probably would think you invented some kind of strange floating fortress overloaded with all kinds of guns. I really look forward to seeing this thing complete!

Simon
Wiedereinstieg in den Kartonbau nach vielen Jahren ...

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Monday, August 6th 2007, 1:50am

Hey Simon! Yeah, I always look forward to finishing the model and then realize how much fun I had building it. I think that this will look pretty fine when it is done.

I finished installing the last of the hull turrets with the installation of the forward set. I used the same "sleeve" installation with the turret base in order to make it turn and it actually makes the entire assembly easier to put in and align.


Carl
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Wednesday, August 15th 2007, 6:16am

After a short break I'm working again on the Masséna. First I attached the funnels and then started on the foremast. In the first picture the mast is a temporary one but I like the view of the bow so I'm showing it. In the second picture I have rebuilt the mast and started gluing down the decks. I build and attach each deck from the bottom up so that I can spend time on the railings as I go.


Carl
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Royaloakmin

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Wednesday, August 15th 2007, 3:23pm

GB, looking good. I imagine the worst is over once the hull and turrets are complete? What do you use for the railings?
best regards
mit herzlichen grussen

Fred

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  • "Golden Bear" started this thread

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Thursday, August 16th 2007, 5:48am

Fred, I think that the toughest part should indeed be over. With the minimal superstructure the model really develops around the hull and the turrets. However, there is a lot of detailing to do yet before I can put this thing to rest. There are still eight light guns with shields to model that will sit on the top deck - and ventilators, cranes, masts and similar goodies! The railings are PE paper in 1:400 that come as three strand. I'm cutting out the bottom strand and shortening them a little for the model. It takes a little work to piece them together so that the posts come out at corners and whatnot.



Carl

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Sunday, August 19th 2007, 2:28pm

A few more pictures of the main bridge on the Masséna:
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Sunday, August 26th 2007, 6:09pm

A couple new pictures of the model. I've added transoms and the aft bridge. The tops are not glued on yet. Also repainted the railings to match the topside color.
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cerberusjf

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Monday, December 10th 2007, 11:40pm

That's a great looking model, would you be doing an underwater hull for it as well?
Thanks
John

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Monday, December 10th 2007, 11:52pm

I am indeed afraid, that Carl isn't here any more. There hasn't been any progress with his ship since September and I think he hasn't visited kartonbau since then. Perhaps he returned to the english speaking forum where he came from. Does anyone around here know something about his whereabouts?

Simon
Wiedereinstieg in den Kartonbau nach vielen Jahren ...

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Wednesday, December 12th 2007, 3:17pm

Masséna

Goldenbear has moved here, link below, and until he gave me the information, I was wondering where he had gone, I guess other people here or elsewhere in the world are the same.
He has completed the Masséna awhile ago, and he is now building a 1/250 pre-dreadnought, the Charlemagne, which was laid on keel just after what we call here " la flotte d'échantillons", the Massena is part of, along with the Bouvet, the Carnot, the Charles Martel, the Brennus , as all differ one another.

Early July, Goldenbear warned on cardmodels.net the enthusiasts about his moving, some paid attention, others such as me, did not.

www.papermodelers.com/
Renaud

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