Imperial Shipyards

Achille, a French frigate carrying 36 guns

62 posts in this topic

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Building Achille began in October 2009 as a side project of what was then my main shipbuilding project, Superbe. At the beginning it was much inspired by CGH's Build a frigate tutorial since I just wanted to quickly figure out how his techniques look like. At that time, Achille wasn't supposed to feature any interior or much detail and i planned to finish her in less than a month so that I could practice rigging techniques for "Superbe".

When I posted a WIP topic though, my plans turned upside down. Through much feedback, for which I am extremely grateful, and my ambition to challenge what is possible on prefabs to the maximum, Achille became my main project, "Guerrière", her sistership, my side project while "Superbe" was given up (for now).

Finally, Achille took me some 13 months and almost 300 hours to build. It contains about 5200 Lego pieces of which most are small and some very rare. To make her 32 sails and rigging, 1,5 m2 of linen and some 220m of 6different types of string have been consumed. It weighs 4,6 kg and measures 76cm in height and 105cm in length (over all). It is completely modular; the deck can be taken of to show the full interior, also all sails can be removed.

I would like to credit Captain Green Hair, Admiral Croissant, Admiral Bejaune and Captain Blackmoor for their building techniques (esspecially CGH!), much inspiration and their valuable help and assistance on MSN. :thumbup:

Also there has been an important, keen competition with Admiral Croissant's project Vesta which was build during the same time and drove me to invest much more time for rigging and sails than what I would have oherwise. :thumbup:

Thank you so much! Now it is time for some more pictures:

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A bird's eye shows all of Achille's 32 sails.

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Of course the studding sails can be easily removed, as all other sails can be too. As a vessel of the Ancien Régime she flies the royal standard of France, a plain white flag.

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As you may spot in this picture, I used metal hook and eyes for making the sails modular.

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The bow shows her very unique headrails technique. :pir-wub:

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The stern has been rebuild several times:

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This one is for Captain Green Hair:

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Now let's show you some details. Here, you can see the bow with the massive Ancors.

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This is where the ship's bell is situated. You can also see the upper part of the galley.

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Here we have the two boats Achille is carrying for various tasks, one of them being to pull the ship when there is light wind.

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This is the capstan used for raising the anchor.

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This is one of the most vital places on a ship: the steering wheel!

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Now let's go and see what it's like below deck.

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(Nicely shows how the modularity works; notice the two-way curved deck and the golden flag tops.)

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Here you can see the galley, you may have seen the upper part in front of the bell.

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This is the storage compartment - hmm looks like we forgot a prisoner down there! :pir-devil:

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Now let's go to a much nicer place: the captain's cabin!

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The bed for the captain is situated on the port side, while navigation equipment is starbord.

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Of course, Achille has a brave crew as well.

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With a neat little trick, placing minifigs on the tiled deck isn't so hard:

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:cannon: FIRE!

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More pictures can be found on Flickr

Now it is time for me to shut up and pay attention to your comments and reactions. :pir-classic:

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A fine and amazing ship!

Nice job on the SNOT for the mast platforms, and the galley, and of course the captain's cabin walls...

And a very interesting colorscheme that gives your Achille a fierce look!

Congrats :thumbup:

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So much awesomeness! I think you've beaten the Vesta here :thumbup:

But that's nice about this forum, keep trying to use other people's techniques and improve it with your own. A keen competition like you said :pir-classic:

I really like the fact that you gave it studdingsails. It shows that it's possible and they look great.

I think I mentioned quite a lot of features of this ship in previous posts, so I'll mention mostly the new things now.

The gally is new to me and has a nice design, and the stern improvements are great as well.

What I'm also very fond of is your way of making it modular. It's very clever and I will keep it in mind for my next ship.

I will of course blog this, but actually I think this should be on the EB-frontpage as well :pir-sweet:

[bloggedcp][/bloggedcp]

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Hi Perfectionist,

for me is this the best Lego-ship ever!!! :pir-wub:

Absolutely fantastic!

I have already followed up the reports on the construction of the ship.

Actual a very good work. I more cannot say to it.

Capt. K

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Well, what can I say... MOC ships don't come any better than this. It's the pinnacle of ship design and ranks up there with the few other creations of this magnitude and attention to detail. A perfect example of what is possible not only with enough time and money, but creativity and enthusiasm as well. Just great! Let's hope it never gets broken down into it's bricks again ;-)

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That really is impressive! Such a great looking ship with so many great details. You really have tried to make this as detailed as possible and added in so much. The fact that it has a really nice interior just adds to the beauty, plus that's one of the best stern/cabins i've seen. Your hard work and time has paid off, this is an awesome moc. Well done, have yourself a beer, you've earned it :pir-classic::thumbup:

Lets be honest, this forum has the best fleet on the web!

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wow not only have you created one very detailed ship both inside and out but you managed to keep the playability level right up there with the removable top deck with out compromising your awesome rigging :thumbup:

my hat goes off to you sir!!

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A real masterpiece of construction on the prefab hull. Really makes me want to have a proper go at one of these Captain Green Hair hybrid frigates :pir-classic: . You should have named this one the Superb!

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The final pictures turned out great. She's a real beauty! For me the best Frigate so far... and even during the wip a great source of inspiration for my frigate! well down, even if she's a frenchmen ;) I really hope you'll finish her sistership, too. they would look great together!

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Oh my, This is a really beautiful ship! I guess thats how you got your name, because this is perfect!!! I really enjoyed this, as I have been following your build for some time now. It's really nice to see an idea go from wip to finished project. Your last pic made me feel as if I was there, watching Achille fire a broadside, sweet music to my ears. Great job, keep up the good work!

Capt. Stabbin

:jollyroger:

Edited by Capt. Stabbin

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Everything has alredy been sayed but, look at this beaty :pir-wub: My words cannot tell enough, and the word "Unbelivible" Isnt even close what i think of her. I can only say at this is very well deserved blogging and she is a real beaty. You should b very proud of her captain :pir-cry_happy:

Captain Becker

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WOW!! All your hard work and long hours has payed off. This ship looks fantastic very highly detailed I love the sails and the rigging and everything else... Job well done!

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And there she is! :pir-wub:

What a lovely ship, the build already promised this would be one of the most amazing ships I have seen.

The amount of detail you have poured in this ship is incredible, everything is just there! You have also used new techniques in this ship, and I'm sure we'll see them used in more ships soon!

The sails could be a bit darker, it would add withered look to them. The shape of the sails are great, sharp edges and no raffling. The rigging is incredible, it looks very sturdy. The colours and thickness perfectly fit with this ship. Until now I only have seen this kind of rigging on wooden ship models in a museum.

It looks like the build had another reward too. :pir-sweet:

moc_tag.gif

:pir-wink:

Congratulations!

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This truly is an amazing ship, I like the little details that make it better like the bed in the captains quarters and the brick built anchor. The crew also look very cool. Very good job, I would never be able to build something like this.

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An amazing ship really, phenomenal rigging. And to top it all off its all modular! Great job.

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Most impressive. I love all the little techniques you've used for the little details here, especially the head rails. Look at all those hands... :wub:

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these are the things i love on this MOC:

1) everything

end of the list :)

between achilles and vesta, the french army on this forum keeps the most detailed ships!!

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Since the forum became incredibly calm this weekend I'll answer a bit earlier than planned:

Nice job on the SNOT for the mast platforms

Thanks for pointing that out! It has indeed taking me quite a while to construct masts that are looking at realistic as possible in that size and are also very stable ( a must for taking the topdeck of). I'm quite happy with the result.

So much awesomeness! I think you've beaten the Vesta here :thumbup:

But that's nice about this forum, keep trying to use other people's techniques and improve it with your own. A keen competition like you said :pir-classic:

I really like the fact that you gave it studdingsails. It shows that it's possible and they look great.

I think I mentioned quite a lot of features of this ship in previous posts, so I'll mention mostly the new things now.

The gally is new to me and has a nice design, and the stern improvements are great as well.

What I'm also very fond of is your way of making it modular. It's very clever and I will keep it in mind for my next ship.

It really does make me feel most proud that it is you to say that. Actually I still think Vesta has better sails and more detailed rigging, something that was only possible because of your model building experience and that will make your ship stand out for a long time. The modularity has it's good points, but it also means some tradeoffs on the rigging, so I don't see it as a problem your ship is less modular. :pir-blush:

Hi Perfectionist,

for me is this the best Lego-ship ever!!! :pir-wub:

Music in my ears, thank you so much!

A perfect example of what is possible not only with enough time and money, but creativity and enthusiasm as well. Just great! Let's hope it never gets broken down into it's bricks again ;-)

Well, i cannot deny that this has been an extraordinary money and time-intensive project, I put in a lot of effort and paid a lot of attention to every detail, so I'm happy you noticed that. Quite obviously Achille will be well-protected; I built a plexiglass showcase to protect her from physical damage as well as dust. :pir-sweet:

That really is impressive! Such a great looking ship with so many great details. You really have tried to make this as detailed as possible and added in so much. The fact that it has a really nice interior just adds to the beauty, plus that's one of the best stern/cabins i've seen.

Lets be honest, this forum has the best fleet on the web!

Thanks for commenting! I have always found a ship's stern to be most important for it's beauty, so I rebuild that part most often and I'm very happy you like it! I also enjoyed that part of the building process the most.

And indeed, there's no better fleet on the web, but there's also no better French fleet anywhere, not even here! :bonaparte:

Simply perfect, the name is program :thumbup::pir_laugh2:

Well, my nickname is meant to be a bit self-ironic since I often have not managed to finish the MOCs I spent most time on (mostly large ones) because I rebuilt them again and again, but by now I manage that much better. Let's just say I like continuously improving constructions, but I can put a limit to that. I'm rather playing with perfectionism than trying to achieve it. As a result, Achille isn't really "perfect" (which might actually be boring), but it's as good as I can make a ship of that scale.

wow not only have you created one very detailed ship both inside and out but you managed to keep the playability level right up there with the removable top deck with out compromising your awesome rigging :thumbup:

Yeah, well despite all AFOL complexity, it's still a toy, isn't it?

A real masterpiece of construction on the prefab hull. You should have named this one the Superb!

Na, Superbe might still be build. But I'm glad you like her.

The final pictures turned out great. She's a real beauty! For me the best Frigate so far... and even during the wip a great source of inspiration for my frigate! well down, even if she's a frenchmen ;) I really hope you'll finish her sistership, too. they would look great together!

I am pretty bad at taking pictures, but I really did my best this time. I hope you'll manage to build the frigate you want to and I'm glad you found inspiration in my ship. Of course I will finish Guerrière since it's only sails and some rigging that needs to be done. She'll be shorter than Achille (5 midsections) since I feel two identical ships would be boring. Oh, by the way: Achille could use an Englishman for capturing! :pir-tongue:

I guess thats how you got your name, because this is perfect!!! I really enjoyed this, as I have been following your build for some time now. It's really nice to see an idea go from wip to finished project.

As I explained already, complete perfectionism isn't quite my aim, but I prefer MOC quality to quantity. Thank you for referring for the WIP topic, the feedback provided there has much improved Achille and it also explains both her making and techniques.

You should b very proud of her captain :pir-cry_happy:

Hehe, I am. Thanks! :pir-sweet:

WOW!! All your hard work and long hours has payed off. This ship looks fantastic very highly detailed I love the sails and the rigging and everything else... Job well done!

Thanks! Detail is what very often distinguishes a good MOC from a set nowadays (like no control panels in cockpits :pir-laugh: ).

And there she is! :pir-wub:

What a lovely ship, the build already promised this would be one of the most amazing ships I have seen.

The amount of detail you have poured in this ship is incredible, everything is just there! You have also used new techniques in this ship, and I'm sure we'll see them used in more ships soon!

The sails could be a bit darker, it would add withered look to them. The shape of the sails are great, sharp edges and no raffling. The rigging is incredible, it looks very sturdy. The colours and thickness perfectly fit with this ship. Until now I only have seen this kind of rigging on wooden ship models in a museum.

It looks like the build had another reward too. :pir-sweet:

moc_tag.gif

:pir-wink:

Congratulations!

That is a very pleasant surprise! :pir-wub:

Of course I have noticed some builders used techniques which I introduced on Achille, most notably the grates made from headlight bricks. As long as they don't pretend to have invented everything themselves, it makes me feel proud they do.

The sails have clean edges because I covered them with nail polish to pretend them from frazzling. That was extremely annoying because of the smell, so I appreciate you mentioning it.

You do have a point with the sails; I wanted them to be realistic, but at the same time I was slightly worried the tea would leave a pattern, so I put them out rather early.

Well, It's not a fundamental flaw, so let's just pretend it's a new ship whose sails are not yet withered. :pir-wink:

I would never be able to build something like this.

That might change. I notice you're building a frigate too? I'll comment on it when you next update it, it's looking good so far.

An amazing ship really, phenomenal rigging. And to top it all off its all modular! Great job.

Thanks, General! When I planned her to get an interior, she had to become modular, otherwise it would have been pointless. I used a few techniques I planned using on my larger Superbe, and I hope I will also transfer some back from Achille! :pir-classic:

How's your frigate?

Absolutely brilliant Perfectionist. One of the best ships I have ever seen.

Hehe, thanks. I hoped finishing an age of sail MOC ship of a very high quality, but initially it wasn't supposed to be Achille. Still, I'm not displeased about how it all developed and I get the impression I have been able to set a new standard.

Most impressive. I love all the little techniques you've used for the little details here, especially the head rails. Look at all those hands... :wub:

Yeah, thanks for mentioning that point. I can still remember how my fingers hurt from putting those hands in the 3mm hose, but I have planned using that technique for headrails for a really long time, probably since I came out of my little dark age. I'm wondering nobody attempted to copy it so far... maybe it's too tricky - or it hurts too much... :pir_wacko:

So: Captain Green Hair, where are you? :pir-tongue:

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What a fantastic ship! I really like the finished outcome. One question though, why is she flying white flags? Has this bluecoat vessel already surrendered to the mighty Redcoats fleet? :bonaparte:

Congratulations Perfectionist! :thumbup:

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What a fantastic ship! I really like the finished outcome. One question though, why is she flying white flags? Has this bluecoat vessel already surrendered to the mighty Redcoats fleet? :bonaparte:

I was afraid someone would ask that question, well I edited the first post accordingly. :pir-hmpf_bad:

Historically the Acien Régime in France used a plain white flag as the royal standard on their warships in the 17th and 18th century. This can be found on numerous paintings as well, for example this one from the American war of Independence.

In sea combat, surrender would take place by striking the ensign. This could sometimes happen accidentally, in which case the concerned ship had to give message that they were eager to continue fighting. :pir-grin:

By the way, there are far more bluecoat vessels on this forum than redcoat ones.

Edited by Perfectionist

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Historically the Acien Régime in France used a plain white flag as the royal standard on their warships in the 17th and 18th century.

So you're actually on the bluecoat side :pir-classic: And the enemy of for example the Fourageux and the Vesta.

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So you're actually on the bluecoat side :pir-classic: And the enemy of for example the Fourageux and the Vesta.

What should that mean? France is France and both the Fourageux and the Vesta are French (=Bluecoat) ships, even if from the Napoleonic period.

Somehow your response doesn't seem to make sense to me. :pir_wacko:

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O wait, I mean you're on the redcoat side. You're carrying the white flag, which is from the ancien regime.

During the napoleonic wars, the ancien regime/bourbons fought alongside the British, and against the revolutionary French, like Vesta :pir-classic:

Edited by Admiral Croissant

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