Plaid Beard

Topsail Schooner "Lady Kathryn"

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After many months of planning, research, reading, studying, building, rebuilding, tearing-down, tearing out hair, and experimenting, I finally am able to present to you the Yankee topsail schooner Lady Kathryn (The Kate, for short).

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pirates-indexed.gif Brig - Two Masts - Two Square Sails on the Main 21B

The Kate was built in the shipyards at Portsmouth, New Hampshire, in the 1720s, and transports cargo from New England to the Caribbean (with the occasional smuggling run to the French at Québec).

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She runs heavily armed to defend against pirates, and sails fast close to the wind to outrun Royal Navy revenue patrols.

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I chose the figurehead I did because it looked so much like the young friend of mine for whom the ship is named.

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The captain's cabin is not yet furnished and finished, but it's going to be a while before I can get around to that.

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Being thrifty Yankees, the old, ripped blanket in the bunk gets patched instead of thrown away.

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I tried quite a few building techniques that I learned from studying other ships on this site, so thank you to ALL of you who have posted pictures of your creations so fellers like me can learn from your talent and experience.

Hope you all like it! By the way, if there are too many picture, please let me know and I'll delete some. This is my first major MOC post and I didn't know if there were a limit.

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The windlass is functional and raises both anchors.

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The Kate flies a flag associated with Colonial New England, the Pine Tree flag.

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Building the binnacle was a giant pain, but I like the way it turned out.

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She's not perfect, but I'm pretty happy with her. Building her gave me the opportunity to buy a LOT of amazing books on 18th Century sailing ships, and schooners in particular.

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Wow! I love it! I really, really like the design, especially the stern. The cabin and interior of the ship looks great, I also like the custom flag. Consider me a big fan of your building style, and when I make a smaller ship(s), I may use this as an inspiration, along with a few other LEGO ships, and real life pics/blueprints. Great, job! One suggestion: Add more crew pirate_wink.gif You don't want those pirates taking such a lovely ship!

Edited by James Wellington

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Nice schooner! She looks very good overall. The bow design is slightly blocky - not as smooth as the prefabs - but the fact that you went with a brickbuilt hull is great. Likewise tumblehome sides would be nice but for smaller vessels like this it's not a big deal. You may hear some criticism for making so much of the hull black but I think it looks pretty good that way and the tan deck provides a nice soft contrast. The cabin is good the way it is, but I won't complain if you detail it a little more. I like the view of the cargo hold and those custom guns are lovely. She's certainly not lacking swivels either! You've built for a sail plan rarely seen in these waters - any chance of seeing her under sail? I wouldn't worry about any pic limit for something like this and I'm sure more would be fine. It's good to see someone addressing the shortage of good merchant vessels. Good work!

Edited by Captain Dee

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I like your ship a lot! You've captured the feel of this type of merchant vessel well. Nice detail in a small amount of space. I like the visible cargo hold, the working windlass, and the design of the swivel guns is very interesting; I may borrow that! The custom flag is a nice finishing touch!

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Thank you all for your comments and support! The color-scheme was tricky - I actually completely tore apart the ship and rebuilt it several times before I got a color-scheme that looked okay. My research books helped some with picking colors, as well.

I also do plan on making custom sails for it when time allows, and I'll post those photos when that project is done.

And now that this one is finished, I can finally turn my attention to finishing my Bluecoat frigate and my Spanish galleon.

Edited by Plaid Beard

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Very fine, very cleverly built!

Can't wait to see this ship being fully manned and setting sails!

Custom guns are fine too.

As far as I have understood there is no limit to the number of pictures that you can include in your post.

And all of your pictures make perfect sense in depicting your creation. pirate_satisfied.gif

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Really nice merchant ship. We should see more of them in our piratey waters. I especially like how you immediately climbed from the prefab to brickbuilt hull threshold. Swivels and cannons are excellent and so is the cargo haul, the compass emplacement and captain's cabin (try adding a table or something. it may look even better). As many have suggested, try to add more (merchant looking) crew to your ship and let her do business to earn you money!

And if you ever consider adding sails, judging from your hull competence, you will do fine.

P.S: I am still at the studying/reading part of the journey of LEGO ship building :) I might try doing some imperial outpost/beach landing till i can finally build some worthy ship

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I'm looking forward to hand-picking a crew for this vessel. I have almost 30-years'-worth of Pirates sets from which to draft a crew, as well as many custom figures I created, myself. I will be a nice project for an upcoming rainy day.

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With regards to the crew, you have an excellent start with that decidedly non-pirate fig who is currently onboard. When I got several of those torso pieces trade and commerce were the first things to come to mind. Some of the pirates over the years have been useful as merchant figs but several of the licensed minifigs work too, as you've shown. I'm sure you'll do fine and I'm anxious to see that galleon.

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With regards to the crew, you have an excellent start with that decidedly non-pirate fig who is currently onboard. When I got several of those torso pieces trade and commerce were the first things to come to mind. Some of the pirates over the years have been useful as merchant figs but several of the licensed minifigs work too, as you've shown. I'm sure you'll do fine and I'm anxious to see that galleon.

Thank you! One of the minifigures on the ship was the fencing instructor in my ecole des armes (which was possible because of the fencing swords that came with the musketeer minifigs), but you're right - they are perfect for merchants.

I have a lot of work to do on the galleon. I had it completed and ended up tearing pieces off it to make my frigate, plus I want to rebuild it because I feel like it's a little lopsided. But galleons have always been my favorite ships - I've been studying them since I was a kid, and I always wanted TLG to come out with one.

Edited by Plaid Beard

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Hey - sorry for the late post. You mentioned the vessel on a recent response to a post, so just taking a look now. I really like it! Great cabin details and storage, and love the cannons with the rounded end. Best way to go , custom cannons, with the smaller vessels IMO. Did have a long hard thought about tumblehomes and experimented: they were present on most vessels of around this size but pretty minimal in some cases. In my opinion, adding tumblehomes to vessels of this sort of size isn't necessary: in fact, when I tried, it made my brig look odd - almost like an ironclad or the hull started looking like something out of WW1! Just didn't fit. Really think if going up to corvette/frigate size (prefabs or no) it does look better with a tumblehome however if building fun but reasonably realistic ships.

All the best! Great build!

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Hey - sorry for the late post. You mentioned the vessel on a recent response to a post, so just taking a look now. I really like it! Great cabin details and storage, and love the cannons with the rounded end. Best way to go , custom cannons, with the smaller vessels IMO. Did have a long hard thought about tumblehomes and experimented: they were present on most vessels of around this size but pretty minimal in some cases. In my opinion, adding tumblehomes to vessels of this sort of size isn't necessary: in fact, when I tried, it made my brig look odd - almost like an ironclad or the hull started looking like something out of WW1! Just didn't fit. Really think if going up to corvette/frigate size (prefabs or no) it does look better with a tumblehome however if building fun but reasonably realistic ships.

All the best! Great build!

I also thought long and hard about how to add a tumblehome to this ship, but a lot of the sources I looked at agreed with you - that tumblehomes on ships this size either were minimal or nonexistent. But then schooners of the 18th and early-19th Centuries could vary quite a bit in size, so if I were building a later-period schooner I could make it larger than this one and include a tumblehome. It also would be easier to do an early-19th Century schooner from a construction standpoint because the top decks tended to be much more flush to each other and the angle of the stern was considerably sharper than on earlier schooners such as the one on which I patterned mine.

I would like to do another schooner sometime - one from the early-19th Century. I've got my eye on building the USS Hamilton, which sunk with USS Scourge in the Great Lakes in a storm during the War of 1812. I'm fascinated by the large pivoting deck cannon on Hamilton, and I think it would be a fun build.

Thanks for the comment!

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Beautiful color scheme and attention to detail! It just looks really well built and designed overall, thank you for sharing it.

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Beautiful color scheme and attention to detail! It just looks really well built and designed overall, thank you for sharing it.

Thanks! If I were building it again there are several things I'd do differently, but I do like the way it turned out. Hoping to get some sails on it soon.

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Brig?! Why is she indexed as a brig? She’s a topsail schooner of the Marblehead variety, Plaid Beard as much said so himself. Someone please change that?

Sorry…

Ok on to the topic at hand. Sorry to bump this but I missed the boat when she was new.

At first glance I like her. There are no real problems, issues or anything incorrect about her, and that’s high praise. What you have is instantly recognizable and very well done.

That being said: I honestly feel if you got this far you can go a little further. I see everything you’ve included and why. I love your attention to detail. Be honest though, isn’t she a bit “slab sided” and “bluff in the bows”? I know what you’re thinking: you think I want you to replicate my schooner but no. I’m just saying there are a few tricks you might want to incorporate to give her some more of the shapeliness characteristic of schooners like her.

From what you have already it’s a short step to a DPW/Pickle type hull . I did something like it on a previous iteration of Scorpion.

*Edit: came to me after the fact, Mr. Townsend's Pinnacle might be a better example. She's so similar in size and scale. http://www.eurobricks.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=94128 *

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not down on her, I DO like Katy and if you’re happy with her, then ignore me and don’t change a thing. I only offer since you expressed an interest in my Ramcat/Nonesuch style and you’re really not far off. All in all, she’s a great build and I thank you for sharing her.

P.S. do any of your books corroborate what I’ve theorized over here?

Edited by kurigan

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I just noticed she was indexed as a brig, as well. Not sure how I missed that.

Anyway,yes, I think you're quite right on a lot of your points. Part of the challenge for me in building her was that most of the examples I saw of Lego-built schooners were early-19th Century, while I was trying to build an early-18th Century schooner. The stern is general less sloped on 18th Century schooners, and the rear deck is higher.

I also wanted to make it as close to the waterline as I could to give her smooth lines, but I did not count on the bow coming out so blocky. In one way this works better for an early-18th Century schooner because they were rounder in the bow than their later cousins, but it does make the bow look more blocky than I wanted.

This was the first (and thus far only) brick-built hull ship I've made, so there was a lot of experimentation, trial-and-error, and redesigning on the go. Next one will go more smoothly.

I've been planning to refurbished her for a little while now. I won't be doing custom rigging because 1) I don't have the time to put into it, and 2) I want to try that on a much smaller vessel first.

Thanks for your insight! I think you nailed it when you said I could go farther on it.

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Brig?! Why is she indexed as a brig? She’s a topsail schooner of the Marblehead variety, Plaid Beard as much said so himself. Someone please change that?

I just noticed she was indexed as a brig, as well. Not sure how I missed that.

The monkeys who update the ship index are not trained very well and also have a drinking problem. :monkey:

The rations of rum has been decreased to 5 liters a day per monkey to hopefully increase discipline and accuracy. :grin:

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How did you do the front? That as, how did you implement the plat for the deck in there? I was wondering, because I am planning on doing a ship with the same technique.

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9 minutes ago, Admiral John Turkey said:

How did you do the front? That as, how did you implement the plat for the deck in there? I was wondering, because I am planning on doing a ship with the same technique.

Though we do appreciate your interest and enthusiasm we do ask that you refrain from bumping old topics. This post was last commented on for nearly a year and a half. For your edification please revisit the Site Guidelines as well as this topic on Bumping Old Topics. Thank you for understanding. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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