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Member postings for Banjoman

Here is a list of all the postings Banjoman has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Coming off the tangent ...
07/04/2020 10:42:18

Hello Bob,

And thank you very much! Yes, it is of course seriously over constructed for the purpose, and I'm sure I could have gotten summat from Ikea for less money and much less trouble, but part of the point of the exercise was to practice my (as yet fairly limited) skills with hand planes, saws and chisels.

I will admit, though, to a certain sense of pride when, after assembly, I checked all the internal corners with a precision square, and every single one turned out to be exactly 90°!

Now, a Stanley plane for a wedding present – well done, your wife!

If the blade on your plane is acting up too much, there are top quality replacement blades available from people like Ron Hock (**LINK**) or Ray Iles (**LINK**).


07/04/2020 10:05:45

The edges and the underside of the sub-top where then varnished ...


... and finally glued with 30 minute epoxy to the actual top, which is from some old 10 mm thick Corian that I'd kept from a kitchen renovation many years ago.


... while the shelf was also made up from another piece of said Corian.


And then this morning ...


... the table was finally installed next to the workshop sink ...


... with all my sharpening stuff handy: Japanese waterstones for sharpening, a set of diamond stones for grinding, a diamond lapping plate to keep the waterstones flat, plus various bits and bobs.

So! Back to model boats – at least for one project! A new thread will follow shortly ...


07/04/2020 10:05:30


As mentioned recently in another thread (see **LINK**), I have been off on a full scale woodworking tangent now for some time, and while I have no intention whatsoever of abandoning that anytime soon, I have decided that now is a good time to intersperse a moel boat project.

An important reason is that my next woodworking project will be a seven foot Roubo style workbench, made from hard maple, to get which I'd been planning to travel up to Arnhem in the Netherlands, where there's a top notch timber yard. However, under current lockdown rules the trip would certainly count as non-essential, and thus neither it nor the border crossing involved would be allowed. And, even when I will eventually be able to make the trip, I would still want to let the timber accilmatise to my workshop for a number of weeks or even months.

Oh, and just to be clear: I much prefer to have only one project going at a time; I tend to lose focus if I don't.

Anyway, another reason is that this morning I finally finished the sharpening station that I've been working on since mid-January! For the first bit of that build, see my post in the thread linked to above, where I left off at the time of chopping out the mortises ...


For the shelf support mortises, that are set against the grain, I prefered to define the openings with chisel and router plane ...


... and then drill and pare out the actual mortises ...


... to take the shelf support stringers.


Next up was sawing all the tenon cheeks ...


... and shoulders ...


... until I finally had all the parts ready for clean-up and assembly, including a set of 6 mm diameter draw bore pins made from riven ash.


So, after cleaning up all the inner faces with smoothing plane and, where required, cabinet scraper, it was time to asemble first the two gables ...


... and then join these together with the long rails ...


... to produce a complete table undercarriage, which was then cleaned up also on the outer faces.


As sharpening is a wettish and sometimes messy business, I wanted a finish that will give good protection, and therefore opted for four coats of Le Tonkoinois – a French linseed- and tungoil-based yacht varnish.


Once the varnish was fully cured, it was time to make up a sub-top from some 18 mm birch plywood, with a first piece fitted just inside the top opening ...


... and then glued and screwed to an overlay piece. As the edges of the latter will be visible, and plywood edges are not the prettiest of sights, I covered these with some 1.5 mm maple veneer, produced from offcuts from the main build ...


... to this effect.


To be continued ...

Edited By Banjoman on 07/04/2020 10:07:47

Thread: Soldering Irons
02/04/2020 08:33:24

I have precisely the same model of Weller Soldering Station as the one Dave M. recommends, and while I would not for a nanosecond consider my opinion to be worth even tuppence, compared to one based on the experience and expertise of Mr Milbourn, I will nevertheless chime in to say that I wholeheartedly second his recommendation. Yes, it's ruddy expensive, but an absolute joy to use; takes a huge variety of tips, that are easy to switch between; heats up very quickly; has precise heat adjustment; and in general allows for very exact work.

In short, when it comes to soft soldering, it is the Apis's genua!


Edited By Banjoman on 02/04/2020 08:33:49

Thread: Micro Schooner
12/03/2020 07:16:47


A very pretty little sister to Miss Morris, it looks like! Any chance of another photo, giving a closer look?


Thread: Cornwall Again
09/03/2020 06:45:17


Thank you very much! An interesting ship in its own way, although strictly speaking not truly a genuine article, as it were ... still, though: interesting!


Thread: Scratchbuilding Miniature Steam & Motorships
09/03/2020 06:43:00


May I take it that this latest e-publication would be superfluous to requirement if one already has several of your printed books?

Kind regards,


Thread: Cornwall Again
06/03/2020 06:46:42


Very nice photos indeed! Do you know what ship that brig is?


Thread: Sails and ropes
26/02/2020 20:12:51

A very Happy New Year to you, too, Bob

Well, yes, I am currently building summat, but not anything at all boat or ship shaped, I'm afraid, as right now I'm busy making a small table to use as a sharpening station in my workshop, based around two old offcuts of Corian that I saved from a kitchen renovation some 15 or so years ago; they will of course make up the top and shelf, being nice, smooth, flat, water proof and very easy to wipe clean.

This is my sketch for the project (all measurements in mm):



Apart from giving me a dedicated sharpening station (which is handy, as it can go next to the workshop sink, and have the most frequently used stones permanently set out and ready), the project is also a test of my own mettle against American hard maple as a timber, as that is what I'd like to use for an upcoming work bench build; I thus started this particular job by ripping and cross cutting a couple of raw planks of 8/4 and 6/4 hard maple ...


... to break the stock down to rough size ...


... before hand planing it smooth, to thickness ...


... to width and foursquare.


Right now I'm chopping out the mortises in the legs ...


... after which it'll be time to saw the tenons on the rails.


As I just said, this is, as it were, a warm-up and training project for what I plan to do next, which is to build a 7' x 24" x 4" work bench; I have already bought all the hardware, and sometime in March or April I plan to travel up to Arnhem in the Netherlands, where there is a first class timber yard, and buy the timber I'll need for that.

However, given that I will then want to give that timber a fair amount of time to acclimatise to my workshop, my thinking right now is that once the timber had been laid in, it would not be a bad moment to finally get on to the Fairey Huntsman that is next on my model boat build list ... We'll see about that, but if I do, I'll be sure to post about it here

Edited By Banjoman on 26/02/2020 20:14:01

Edited By Banjoman on 26/02/2020 20:14:24

26/02/2020 10:56:23


On YouTube, there's is a short video where the Vasa Museum (and others, I think) are test firing a full size replica of one of the Vasa's guns against a target which is also a full size solid oak replica of a wooden man o'war's sides. I believe the tests were carried out at the Bofors test firing range ...

Anyway, here's the link: **LINK**

There are more video clips from the same occasion available, although mainly in Swedish. Still, the images speak very much for themselves!


Thread: Miss Morris
09/02/2020 20:40:34

That, Bob, is just plain lovely! A fantastic model of a beautiful ship!


Thread: airbrush question
09/02/2020 20:36:10

Hello Neil,

I paint my r/c boat hulls pretty much exclusively with an airbrush and the Vallejo RC Premium Airbrush (**LINK**) range of acrylic paints, which come in 60 ml bottles. To give you some ideas of coverage, you could have a look at the painting section of my old Eilean Mór thread ( – see about halfway down the page).

For the exterior of that hull (which is approximately 33" long with a 9.5" beam), I used about 120 ml (i.e. two bottles) of white primer, and (if my memory serves me) something like 40 ml of red paint and perhaps 20 ml or so of black.

In other words, these paints cover really well!

The method is without doubt considerably slower than rattle cans, as one has to build up the paint in several thin layers, but I've not found it to be a problem.

For these large areas, I generally use a 0.6 mm needle and a 5 ml cup on my airbrush, and find that that combination works fine.

I have never tried to airbrush other paints for this sort of large surface, so don't know what sort of coverage one would get with for example Humbrol enamels.


Edited By Banjoman on 09/02/2020 20:36:32

Edited By Banjoman on 09/02/2020 20:47:57

Thread: Airbrush Kit
23/11/2019 22:25:24

Personally, I have a EuroTec 30A oil lubricated compressor with which I have been very pleased. The 30 refers to its airflow capacity of 30 litres/minute, and when painting hulls with a 0.6 needle, I would not have wanted anything much smaller than that. At a pinch, I think I could have managed with a 20 l/m one, but I would have been asking such a one to work to its absolute limits for much of the time. As it is, with the 30 l/m, I might just be able to handle a 0.8 needle (although I've never tried), but anything larger than that would most likely struggle. This is a fairly expensive piece of kit, I'm afraid – in the +/- £400 range – and while I'm not specifically recommending this particular compressor or brand over it's comparable competitors, I would propose that you invest in as good and as powerful compressor as you can afford. Unless you are in a situation where a garage compressor would do you: that would give you all the power needed at a quarter or so of the price, albeit with a lot of noise thrown in for free.

As you may have gathered, I am of the opinion that the compressor is a very important part of the kit. The AB itself is of course also a consideration, but here I would say that as long as you stay away from the cheapo knock-offs of the major brands, basically anything will be good enough. If you then find that you like working with an AB, you can always upgrade or get a second one later.

Apart from a few boutique makers (with boutique prices to match) that I think are not what you are looking for anyway, there are a number of reputable makers on the market. I'd say that the two top brands are probably Iwata from Japan, and Harder & Steinbeck from Germany. These two are very good. They both also have budget brands, Neo and Ultra respectively, which are both good value for money. Other known brands such as Badger, Olympos, Sparmax, Paasche etc. are also perfectly servicable.

More important than the exact brand is the type of feed (top, side or bottom) and action (single or double). Personally I prefer top feed, which is where you have a smaller or larger cup screwed to the top of the AB, from which the paint is fed by gravity into the needle chamber. The advantage is that you get just as good feed whether you have 0,5 ml or 5 ml or whatever in the cup, or in other words that it will serve very well for both smaller and larger jobs. Some people like side and bottom feeds, because they can be used with very large containers of paint, but I've not had any problem with mine, which has two exchangable cups, one with a 3 ml and the other with a 5 ml capacity. Yes, when I'm painting a hull, I need to top up the (larger) cup regular, but less often than what one would think.

As for action, single action is slightly less difficult to get started with, but my strong advice would be to go with double action. Single action means that you have a constant airflow going, and that the trigger is just used to open and close the needle, i.e. to release paint into the airstream. This would be fine enough for larger jobs, but is less sensitive than double action for the finer stuff. With double action, the trigger serves both to gradually open and close the airstream (usually by pushing it straight down) and then operate the needle (usually by pulling the trigger back). This takes some practice getting used to, but once mastered gives more variability and control. The important thing is to make it a muscle memory/reflez to always follow the seuqnce of airflow on, paint released, paint stopped, airflow stopped. If one cuts of the air on a double action while the needle is still open, paint is likely to remain on the tip of the needle, which will quickly clog up the nozzle.

My own main airbrush is a Harder & Steinbeck Infinity Two-in-One, with which I have been most satisfied. Again, I'm not specifically recommending that which I happen to have, as comparable stuff from the competitors is just as good and sometimes better. What I like about this one is the fact that it is very easy to change nozzle and needle sizes on it (hence the two-in-one moniker): I use it with wither a 0.2 needle for finer work or a 0.6 needle for larger stuff. I also find it to be quite robust and easy to dismantle and clean (which one has to do after every painting session, or things will quickly get clogged up). However, I think that most H&S airbrushes are actually made so that most nozzle and needle sizes will fit any body, so that a similar set-up might be had for less money than what I paid for mine.

All this said, there will be a number of people out there who get perfectly decent results with budget equipment. More power to them. My personal experience has been that this is an area where you get what you pay for, and for my part I have never regretted getting good quality airbrush tools.


23/11/2019 22:25:17

Hello Simon,

The short answer is that with auírbrush equipment, you very much get what you pay for. Or don't, as it were.

The long answer can be very, very long, indeed but I'll try to keep the below at least shortish.

I should perhaps add that I do almost all of my model boat painting with an airbrush, including hulls in the 35" to 45" range, so I have some experience of both smaller and larger AB paint jobs.

As a starting point, I'd say that the most important aspect of an AB set-up is actually the compressor, rather than the AB itself, and also that compressors tend to get rather expensive quite quickly. However, if you want to be able to paint also larger areas, you will be much better off with a sufficiently powerful compressor. To paint larger areas, you will need a larger needle size – at least 0.6 mm – than those which are usually used for painting plastic models and suchlike, where needles are more often in sizes from 0.018 up to 0.2 and 0.3 mm, and in order to furnish enough airflow to run a larger needle AB for the amount of time involved, the smaller (and less expensive) compressors will not be up to the job.

Dedicated AB compressors come in three basic types: membrane, oilless and oil lubricated. Membrane compressors are those quite small ones you may have seen, that usually come with complete "beginner's" AB kits, and can pretty much be discounted for what you seem to be thinking about. They are usually rather noisy (in the, say 65 to 75dB range) but more importantly will very quickly overheat if you try to paint e.g. a largish model boat hull. Or you will need to stop painting very regularly to let the compressor cool down.

Oilless compressors exist in all sizes, and have the advantage of not needing to be filled up with oil ("maintenance free" is an of quoted description), which means that they are much easier to lug around, as they can be put on any side without risk of oil leaking out, and also that they don't need an yey kept on the oil level nor any oil changes. Less hassle, certainly, but the reverse side of that coin is that they are usually noisier than oil lubricated ones (mostly in the 55 to 65 dB range – think noisy vacuum cleaner) and also that rthey tend to last for less long – the lack of lubrication means that they will wear out faster.

Oil lubricated compressors, lastly, are usually the quietest ones, normally in the 40 to 45 dB range – think slightly noisy fridge. They are often marketed as "silent", but that is perhaps not quite true; they are, however, noticably less noisy than the alternatives, so if you live in a place where or plan to paint at times of the day (or night) when the level of noise will be a consideration, this is worth thinking about.

Another aspect to think about is whether the compressor has a tank or not. For larger jobs, you definitely want a tank, the larger the better! A tank is what it sounds like: a tank on the compressor which is filled with compressed air, and from which you then draw the air you need. Usually, once the pressure drops below a certain level, the motor will kick back in and top it up again, and then shut itself off until it is needed again. With no tank, the motor has to keep running constantly, which on larger jobs seriously raises the risk of overheating. Furthermore, the tank acts as a buffer, which means that you will have a constant, pulse-free airflow, which is not always the case on tankless models.

I should definitely add that if noise is less of a consideration there is one less expensive option than a dedicated AB compressor, namely a large garage compressor. These can often be had from DIY stores and the like fro around £100 or so, and will give you all the air yiou need, and then some. However, they are very noisy: usually in the 90 to 100 db range! The thing is, though, that they can be had with tanks of 50 liters or more. If you are able to run that very noisy thing for maybe five minutes or so during the day, you can then turn off the motor and just take your air very quietly from the tank, which will last you quite a long time. However, if you do run out of air in the middle of the night, you'll be stuck, unless you happen to live in a spot where none would react to that kind of noise at 2 am ... And please be aware that one must also fit such a compressor with an appropriate moisture trap/air filter, or you are likely to get condensed water droplets and oil traces into your paint flow, with less than desirable results.

Getting back to dedicated AB compressors, there are fewer makers on the market than what one would think. A number of different brands, such as Eurotec, Hansa, Sparmax etc., are all made by an Italian company called Werther. If one looks beond the colour schemes and logos, one finds that they all look very similar – and there's a reason for that!

The other major maker of dedicated compressors is Iwata from Japan, who also make some very, very good airbrushes. There's also a UK maker, Bambi, which I believe is mainly geared towards the dental and laboratory markets, but whose compressors will also serve for AB use (compressed air is compressed air).

(to be continued)

Thread: second plank layer problem
11/11/2019 12:56:45


You will find a great deal of relevant information at the Model Ship World articles page on framing and planking, here: **LINK**.

It might well take you several hours to go through it all, and some further mulling things over may also be needed, but I think you will find it worth the time and effort.


Edited By Banjoman on 11/11/2019 12:58:01

Thread: Latest Book Production
31/10/2019 11:50:59

Hello Bob,

Am deligted to report that my copy of the book arrived in the post today, safe and sound

Many thanks and kind regards,


29/10/2019 11:05:46

Hello Bob,

That looks very interesting -- could you perhaps post a link to your order page? I should be able to find it any way, but that'd make it even easier.

Many thanks in advance and kind regards,


Thread: Second Model HMS Sherbourne?
18/09/2019 20:10:16


I have no specific experience of the Sherbourne, but in 2009–10, I built another, and not dissimilar, Caldercraft kit, namely HMS Pickle.

I found it to be a top-notch kit, with all parts and materials clean, sharp and of excellent make and quality. As for the instructions, they were incredibly good and included several sheets of very clear, full-size plans, together with a 64-page (if my memory serves me correctly, but something like that anyway) set of very thorough, step-by-step build instructions, illustrated with clear colour photos and written in excellent English (by, I'd say with almost total certainty, a native speaker of that language).

Based on that experience, I do not hesitate in the least to unreservedly recommend Caldercrafts period ship kits.

My only very minor caveat is that, as I haven't built another one since, I wouldn't know if they've kept up their very high standards from ten years ago, but I have certainly not heard anything to the contrary.


Thread: New to GRP
17/09/2019 13:16:12


No need to apologise -- you are of course quite correct! Yachts can be rigged in many different ways (or not at all, if they are motor yachts), including as a schooner. The OED defines a yacht as

" [...] a vessel, usually light and comparatively small, propelled by motive power other than oars, and used for pleasure excursions, cruising, etc., and now esp. one built and rigged for racing".

So while I would certainly say that Moonbeam is a (model of a) yacht (or rather, a replica of a pond yacht, which in its turn would have been a model of a yacht), to call her "yacht rigged", as I did, is fairly meaningless. I was in a bit of a hurry, and, well, nuff said. Mea culpa, and all that. But at least, she is not a schooner-rigged yacht, which was the point I was really trying to make

So thank you very much, Tim, for letting the pedant in you out!


17/09/2019 07:14:31


If you'd be happy to scratch build from plans, rather than from a kit, Harold A. Underhill's excellent plans for various schooners are available from Brown, Son & Ferguson (**LINK**). If you put "schooner" into the search box on their website, you'll get the full list. Please note that most of these are multi-sheet plans that are sold as individual sheets.

It should perhaps also be noted that Dave Metcalf's Moonbeam is not really a schooner, but yacht rigged; this does of course not detract from its attractiveness in its own right, but if you explicitly wish to build a schooner, it doesn't quite qualify as such.


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We welcome well written contributions from Website members on almost any aspect of Model Boating with a particular emphasis on practical hints, tips, experience and builds.

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