KM Prinz Eugen
PAT KEOUGH, a South African reader, describes his model
Basic hull construction
Once all the stringers were in position the deck was fitted to the framework so that it would form an integral part of the hull. The veneer hull plating used was Meranti which is a very fine grained wood cut down to a thickness of 0.7mm. There were two layers of veneer applied to the frames and then it was all sanded smooth as far as possible ready for a coating of GRP resin. Anyone who has worked with fibreglass (GRP) will know just what a mess it can make and not to mention all the lovely little pieces of glass fibre that find their way onto your skin!
Two layers of GRP resin were applied and allowed to set by being baked in the South African sun for two days - ideal curing conditions! Then the real fun began, turning the hull’s now rough(ish) surface into a smooth slick exterior. It was during this that I learnt a neat trick that speeded up the work considerably. On previous hulls I had sanded the fibreglass itself down to a smooth surface, which took days of elbow grease. On this hull, it was sprayed with general purpose primer and then sanded with 100 grit wet or dry paper. Once the surface felt reasonably smooth all the sanding residue was washed off and there were now highly visible grey patches on the hull where there were areas below the surface that had not been sanded. These were filled with Tamiya white plastic filler, lightly sanded and the hull sprayed again. With the next full hull sanding and subsequent washing down, the number of blemishes was noticeably reduced. So the process was repeated until the grey primer coat remained even after each sanding. You can even alternate between red and grey primer, so visually help see the effects of rubbing down.
Detail work and superstructure
If anyone wishes to correspond with me about this model and the hobby in South Africa, my email address is: pdkxyxkoshcom.co.za. (substitute @ for xyx)
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