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WIP Barbary Corsair Xebec


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100 replies to this topic  – Started by cb4 , May 07 2011 08:11 AM

#1 cb4

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 08:11 AM

With my other ship more or less shelved until I can make myself do some sewing, I've started working on a new project. My other ship was more or less built out of my own head, and I'm not confident that I got all the proportions and curvatures correct. This time I'm basing my ship off some plans that I found on the intertubes. Although the plans themselves may be from a French ship (they're derived from a model in a French museum), I think they should be reasonably close to an actual Algerian design. I particularly wanted to build a xebec because they look very exotic compared to traditional european warships, and because I feel that the infamous barbary pirates are woefully underrepresented. I confess that the simplicity of the rigging also appeals to me. Here's what I have thus far.

The plans, which include hull curvature  :thumbup:
There are several unusual features, notably the complete lack of tumblehome.
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The frame, from above.
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The bows.
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The stern. I've matched the sternpost angle from the plans as closely as possible here. It's quite aggressive.
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From the side. As it's mostly empty space, the frame is quite light.
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Prototype for the rudder attachment.
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Comments and criticisms are very welcome.

#2 Bart

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 08:16 AM

I love it, I love it ..
Great to see you're technique again, :D

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#3 Tazmaniac

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 08:30 AM

Very very nice looking frame work cb4 already I can see a great ship in the making.
Your technique is great and looks to work well on larger type vessels.

Looking forward to updates!


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#4 Aalak

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 09:19 AM

Intresting choice of Ship to MOC! The framework looks nice so far. I really will enjoy watching the process of this one.

#5 Admiral Croissant

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 10:34 AM

I don't have any suggestions for improvement as I see you're working very close to the original ship.
The shape seems perfect and it's indeed great that you're making on of these 'underrepresented' ships.
On the other hand I believe that of the underrepresented ships, the Xebec is still the one we see the most here.
Anyway, good luck! Are you also going to make the small sloop you can see on the instructions picture?
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#6 Sebeus I

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 04:30 PM

Very nice, you start by building the frame ? Very interesting.

#7 Dread Pirate Wesley

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 07:04 PM

Great stuff  :thumbup:  I am a great fan of your technique on a small ship but I dare say it looks even better on a larger one so far!  Good choice in model too, the sail plan looks tricky with the raked masts but I'm sure you'll figure it out, good luck!

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#8 Commander Red Hat

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 07:55 PM

Your frame looks very good and close to the original.
I'm curious to see how you will make the planking on the sides.

Best of luck!
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#9 cb4

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 10:38 PM

View PostAdmiral Croissant, on 07 May 2011 - 10:34 AM, said:

I don't have any suggestions for improvement as I see you're working very close to the original ship.
The shape seems perfect and it's indeed great that you're making on of these 'underrepresented' ships.
On the other hand I believe that of the underrepresented ships, the Xebec is still the one we see the most here.
Anyway, good luck! Are you also going to make the small sloop you can see on the instructions picture?

It's true, there are a fair number of very nice xebecs on this forum - it must be the cool factor.

It's the barbary pirates themselves that I feel are underrepresented, particularly in light of their longevity and success in the Mediterranean.

I'll be building the sloop (referred to as the "chaloupe" in the plans), but it remains to be seen exactly how I'll go about it. It's relatively small so it'll be tricky!

View PostSebeus Iniwum, on 07 May 2011 - 04:30 PM, said:

Very nice, you start by building the frame ? Very interesting.

Yup, you can see an example with a smaller ship from the very beginning in this thread. Yes, I've learned my lesson about taking pictures of black bricks.

There are a few differences with my new project - particularly the different style of hinges I'm using, which have distinct advantages and drawbacks, but the principle is the same.

#10 Bonaparte

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 11:03 PM

Very impressive start!

This could be the beginning of a fantastic ship. I hope you'll post progress pictures as you continue. I'm very curious to see how this will turn out.

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#11 Darth Yogi

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Posted 08 May 2011 - 03:43 AM

A very impressive MOC cb4.  The building techniques are very interesting and I'm sure it will work even better than you last.  Can't wait to see it finished, and good luck.

Great job :thumbup:
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#12 cb4

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 04:34 AM

Quick and dirty first pass at the sloop, using hypotech due to space constraints.

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#13 Captain Becker

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 06:55 PM

Too small for a sloop, i think its more like a cannoe than a small ship. This technique what you are using is good only for bigger ships. For smaller ships, you actually should use offical Lego rowboat or 4+ Pirates Captains Kragg`s ship piece for sloops (At least i do). The first ship wich you made by using this technique, was already great size for a sloop, for a cutter it was a bit too small IMO.
Back to Xebec, the start looks great so far, im intrested to see how you manage to make the sails and the hull. Good luck whit this project.

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#14 cb4

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 02:03 AM

View PostCaptain Becker, on 09 May 2011 - 06:55 PM, said:

Too small for a sloop, i think its more like a cannoe than a small ship. This technique what you are using is good only for bigger ships. For smaller ships, you actually should use offical Lego rowboat or 4+ Pirates Captains Kragg`s ship piece for sloops (At least i do). The first ship wich you made by using this technique, was already great size for a sloop, for a cutter it was a bit too small IMO.
Back to Xebec, the start looks great so far, im intrested to see how you manage to make the sails and the hull. Good luck whit this project.

Captain Becker

Yep, it's a rowboat. Sloop in this sense is just a translation of "chaloupe" in the plans. I think "chaloupe" might actually be better translated as "launch" in this case, but "sloop" is pretty broad to begin with.

I may end up using the lego prefab boats, but I want to try with bricks first - more fun. This just just a rough attempt - I suspect I can do better.

#15 Admiral Croissant

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 09:47 AM

Yeah the chaloupe looks a bit small for minifigs, but on the other hand this is probably the right size compared to the xebec.
Still, it might also be too small for this technique as Capt. Becker said, although I think it looks quite good.
It's a hard choice because the LEGO boats are so short and wide IMO..I leave it up to you :pir-classic:
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#16 Phred

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Posted 10 May 2011 - 01:11 PM

Great idea for a MOC cb4 :thumbup:
What is your source for the plans of this Xebec?
I would like a higher resolution picture to create my own Xebec.  :pir-classic:

View Postcb4, on 07 May 2011 - 08:11 AM, said:


Prototype for the rudder attachment.
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I have a (hopefully) simple idea to improve upon your rudder.
Instead of using
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to attach the rudder.  I would use
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Posted Image could then be closer to the angled edge.
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I believe there then would be fewer and smaller gaps in your rudder assembly.

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#17 cb4

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 07:27 AM

You're right, I might have less complication using
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My main issue with that piece is that it makes a really stiff connection and I'm not sure I'd be able to turn my rudder if I use it. It would also have its own unique clearance problems with respect to the edge - I think I might have to remove the cheese slopes to have enough room to swing it that way on the hinge, especially if I have to shim it with 1x1 plates to get it on the right axis. My plan for hiding everything is to use some snot pieces to attach plates that cover the sides. I'll have to see how it turns out. It's definitely a bit of a phone booth  :pir_laugh2:

I got the plans from this thread in a russian forum I found using google image search. The post is about halfway down the page. There are actually a bunch of detailed plans for different kinds of ships in the thread, including several xebecs.

Here's a quick update. I've installed the rudder, and I've created the framework for the quarterdeck. I've also lowered the main deck and improved the  way frames at the bows and stern are constructed. There's also a little bit of test rail amidships.

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#18 Blackknight112

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 07:44 AM

This looks amazing. I cant wait to see it finished. Keep up the good work.

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#19 Sebeus I

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 08:29 AM

Looking fantastic already.

#20 Admiral Croissant

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 10:15 AM

Looks excellent and very accurate.
I especially like the last picture with the beautiful aerodynamic shape. Keep it up :thumbup:
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#21 Bart

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 11:24 AM

I guess you mean hydrodynamic ;).
unless you build a powerboat ærodynamics have not much use for ships.

but its looking good cb4, I'm looking forward to the next update.


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#22 cb4

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 07:17 AM

Gunwales.

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#23 Red Bricks

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Posted 21 May 2011 - 09:28 PM

All that framework is making me queasy  :pir-sick: A bit to complex for me but I do like it  :pir-sweet:

#24 gotoAndLego

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Posted 22 May 2011 - 04:55 PM

View PostRed Bricks, on 21 May 2011 - 09:28 PM, said:

All that framework is making me queasy  :pir-sick: A bit to complex for me but I do like it  :pir-sweet:

Yes, but brick-built hulls are always better than using Lego hulls.
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#25 Big Cam

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Posted 22 May 2011 - 07:02 PM

This is impressive, I don't know how I overlooked this thread in the past.

I see you are taking your time and keeping it spot on with the original.  I'm sure bricklink is happy you've arrived.

I can't wait to see this done and I can guarantee you a frontpage spot on Classic-Pirates.com when it's completed.




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