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Drlling holes for metal fittings.

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John Arnold 316/01/2018 09:03:20
141 forum posts
6 photos

Firstly I hope that is the correct term for the metal parts attached to the side of the hull which the shrouds are attached to (that is what the user guide refers to them as).

The same metal pieces are used on the front edge of the rudder and the rear of the hull to hold the rudder to the rear of the hull (see attached images marked as F137)

On my model (scale 1/100) they are quite small (as are all the other pieces for rigging the mast) and I am wondering what other model makers use to drill holes for chain plates to be attached to the hull. Obviously if holes are drilled a very small drill bit is required - 1 or 1.5mm. And what tool should be used? A normal cordless drill is large and maybe difficult to control.

Also what is the easiest method to put a taper on the timber supplied for masts and gaffs (the instructions only give the diameters at each end and they taper from 5 to 3mm and 3 to 2mm. The timber supplied is round but the same diameter from one end to the other. Maybe don't bother tapering them? Will that be noticed by friends?

Lastly. The rigging. Supplied in the kit as thin thread. Use a fine sewing needle to thread through the very small 'dead eyes'?



bluenose chain plate.jpg

bluenose chain plate 1.jpg

Ray Wood 216/01/2018 09:31:00
2048 forum posts
720 photos

Hi John

Depends on how much you want to spend, but I'd recommend a Proxxon or Dremel drill which is equipped with a pin chuck, also a set of number drills size 1 - 60 and a smaller set of numbers 60 - 80, also a digital readout vernier is useful for measuring your fixing pins and the size of the drills to form the holes needed. Hope this helps ?

Regards Ray

Banjoman16/01/2018 11:55:41
1142 forum posts
2414 photos


For this kind of drilling I might also use a small rotary tool, as suggested by Ray, preferably held in a stand for better precision, but would be even more likely to put my hand out for a pin vice, such as this one: **LINK**.

It is quite surprising how efficient a tool that is; I have used mine to drill holes from 2.8 mm down to 0.3 mm in diameter, and getting a 1 mm drill bit through 3 or 4 mm thick brass only takes me a couple of minutes. The main advantage compared with a rotary tool, apart from the price, is the improved precision. With a rotary tool, even with a punch mark to start you off, there's always more of a risk that the bit goes dancing across the surface. Also, it is very easy to hold the piece still against the very limited rotary force created by the pin vice, while a rotary at, say, 5000 rpm will be inclined to spin the work piece around.

It is not that I don't use my rotary tools -- I even have two, a Dremel and a cordless blue Bosch -- but for really small jobs in thin material, I usually prefer the pin vice.



Edited By Banjoman on 16/01/2018 11:57:40

Edited By Banjoman on 16/01/2018 11:58:11

Banjoman16/01/2018 12:04:59
1142 forum posts
2414 photos

I should perhaps add that there are different models of pin vice out there; the ones I use are of the type I linked to. However, have also tried the Archimedean drill type, but could never get it to work properly, finding it too much of a hassle to control the piece, the pressure, the point of attack and at the same time work the mechanism to be worth it.

I'm sure others' mileage will vary, but that's my tuppen'orth!


Tim Cooper16/01/2018 12:51:27
376 forum posts
164 photos


Like Matthias I use a pin vice for most of the smaller holes. I used to use one like the picture Matthias posted, but found one with a 3 jaw Chuck on Amazon and quite a reasonable price.


Paul T16/01/2018 13:24:39
7163 forum posts
1214 photos
2 articles


Not sure where you live but Lidl are selling a cracking cordless hobby drill for £17.99 link a very respectable cordless drill for £24.99 link and a separate pack of hobby drill bits/accessories for £12.99 link.

Don't be put off by the perceived 'cheap and nasty' image of Lidl as these tools are of the same quality as Dremel or Bosch.


Banjoman16/01/2018 13:50:04
1142 forum posts
2414 photos


Are you really zartain shure that the Parkless rotary tool @ £17.99 is "of the same quality" as a Dremel at £ 99.99 (**LINK**) or a Bosch at £136 (**LINK**?

Good enough at the price, I don't doubt at all, but "of the same quality" as something that costs five or even seven times as much? Even considering big brand mark-up for name, and Lidl price pressing, that would suggest that Dremel and Bosch (these days Dremel is actually owned by Bosch) are completely ripping their customers off in a way that I very much doubt that they could get away with for long.

This is not to say that the Parkside rotary tool wouldn't be worth getting at what is indeed a very attractive price, but for my part at least I will need much more convincing proof before I accept your statement that they are of the same quality as models from more expensive brands.


Banjoman16/01/2018 14:00:31
1142 forum posts
2414 photos


I only now noticed your second question on getting thin threads through deadeyes, blocks and similar, when setting up the rigging.

For my part, I would not use a sewing needle, as these tends to be too thick around the eye. One way is to use a needle threader (essentially a piece of double bent, very thin steel wire attached to a simple sort of handle), that you could pick up at any haberdasher's for probably under a quid.

My own preferred method is to put a small drop of thin CA glue on the end of the thread. This is then wicked up along the thread for maybe half an inch or so, making the end perfectly stiff and very easy to pass through any hole that's large enough for the thread itself to go through. Other glues will work too, but the advantages of thin CA are (a) that it wicks very well, and (b) that it sets in seconds, meaning that one doesn't have to wait long at all for the end to stiffen up. In addition, I usually wipe off any excess with some kitchen roll, to avoid bead forming (which will of course defeat the purpose) and to further hasten the setting time of the CA so that I can get on with the rigging work.

Once the line has been reeved and secured, the stiff half inch is easily removed with a pair of snippers.


Edited By Banjoman on 16/01/2018 14:00:43

Edited By Banjoman on 16/01/2018 14:01:16

Paul T16/01/2018 15:01:29
7163 forum posts
1214 photos
2 articles


I am a professional engineer and not one to proffer such advice without having first closely examined and thoroughly inspected all of the tools in question.

You mention that Dremel is now owned by Bosch but you might not know that most of these products are actually manufactured by factories in Mexico whereas Parkside tools are manufactured to professional tool standards by companies such as Einhell.

In my experience a high ticket price does not always indicate a better quality.

Eddie Lancaster16/01/2018 15:12:04
695 forum posts
526 photos


Hi, John,

These are the tools that I am using, in the foreground are a pack of micro drills and an eclipse secondary chuck it will hold drills from 2mm. down to about .3mm. In the background are the 2 planes that I use, with either of these you can taper the top of your wooden mast.

Regard and happy modelling


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