Salty old sea dog GE­ORGE DENT dons his oil­skins and grap­ples with a 1970s-era plas­tic kit, por­tray­ing one of the iconic North Sea fish­ing fleet.

Model Rail (UK) - - Work Bench -

I’ve al­ways wanted a lay­out with a mar­itime flavour. Alas, I’ve yet to get around to it - un­til now… Well, it’s not a lay­out as such, rather a dio­rama. But it’s a start. Fur­ther­more, I haven’t built a model ship for ages, so this past month has given me my fair share of prac­ti­cal chal­lenges! There are nu­mer­ous sources of model ships from the likes of Ar­titec and Lan­g­ley Mod­els. How­ever, these are mostly resin or cast metal but I fan­cied some­thing in plas­tic. Rev­ell’s in­jec­tion-moulded fish­ing trawler kit fit­ted the bill. Be­ing styrene, it should be easy to build, de­tail and mod­ify and, at less than £15, it wouldn’t mat­ter if I made a mess of it. And if the project proved a suc­cess, maybe I could add a few more to the fleet. The Rev­ell kit was first re­leased in 1970 and it rep­re­sents one of the many Grimsby-based trawlers op­er­ated by the Ross frozen food com­pany. The orig­i­nal in­spi­ra­tion seems to have been GY123 Ross Kan­da­har. • Knife • Files • Abra­sives • Tweez­ers • Drill and bits • Scis­sors • Paint­brushes Fea­tur­ing a pair of dis­tinc­tive gal­lows on the star­board side, for low­er­ing and haul­ing in the nets, the ships were re­ferred to as ‘Sidewinder’ or ‘Gal­lows’ types. Ross or­dered a num­ber of sim­i­lar ves­sels dur­ing the 1950s/ early 1960s, sail­ing from Lin­colnshire ports un­til the vir­tual demise of the in­dus­try in the 1980s. A num­ber have been pre­served, in­clud­ing GY398 Ross Tiger at Grimsby Docks and Arc­tic Cor­sair at Hull, both now coun­cilowned float­ing mu­se­ums. Ren­dered in 1:142 scale, it’s ideal for ‘N’ gauge lay­outs and the lat­est ver­sion por­trays Grimsby’s GY637 Ross Jackal. The parts are a bit ba­sic, but there’s much po­ten­tial for su­perde­tail­ing and, at 370mm long, it doesn’t take up much space. De­pend­ing on your de­sire for fidelity and re­fine­ment, much of the deck fit­tings could be re­placed, along with items like the handrails and masts that would look much bet­ter ren­dered in metal wire, rod and tube, rather than bulky plas­tic. How­ever, for rea­sons of econ­omy and a lack of off-theshelf re­place­ment parts, I opted to make the best of what was al­ready at hand, adding a min­i­mum of new fit­tings, crafted from plas­tic stock. Hav­ing set aside a few days to get the kit built and painted, my op­ti­mism soon proved mis­placed. It ac­tu­ally took over a fort­night to get the ship built and painted, due in part to the need to fet­tle most com­po­nents be­fore they could be joined. The other rea­son was be­cause I needed to cre­ate some new parts: not to re­place in­fe­rior mould­ings, but be­cause the orig­i­nals were miss­ing. The stair­ways be­tween decks were the main omis­sion. Scratch­build­ing the steps proved a fid­dly ex­er­cise, due to the small na­ture of the parts and I omit­ted one of the pairs of steps fit­ted to the port side on the real thing, judg­ing one set to be enough. I man­aged to find some nice etched 2mm scale lad­ders and handrails from the Nbrass

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