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Our  Models

Virgin Atlantic Challenger I

Everyone was disappointed when the news broke that Virgin Atlantic Challenger I had hit an underwater obstruction and sunk, just a few miles short of the record. [Read more...]


Virgin Atlantic Challenger II

Inspired by Mr Richard Branson crossing the Atlantic in record time, we thought it would be nice to have a model of the Virgin Atlantic Challenger II. [Read More...]


H.M.S. Norfolk.

F230 Duke

Class Frigate.

A world record holder.

[Read More...]



Motor Torpedo Boat  [Read More...]


Fitting Out

Floor and Foam.

From here on it became progressively more involved, difficult and intricate. Peter made a temporary stand for the model and I started on the false flooring. Why, you are asking, do we need a false floor?

Well I thought that it would be easier to kit out and I was going to insert foam into the cavity as this would make it much stronger and lessen the noise and vibrations through the hull.
Also I included internal wall skins and these I filled with foam as well. The sections I have foamed are the forward battery hold, just after the joining bulkhead and the other holds include the main battery section, motor connectors section and the radio gear hold.

Peter started making the main mast and when this was done he gave it to me to finish as I was going to install the motor and the electrics later on. I felt that the joining sections of the hull would not be strong enough on their From here on it became progressively more involved, difficult and intricate.

The middle bulkheads had to be very strong as these sometimes would have to be parted. So I made up L brackets made of aluminium with holes drilled in them, as this would help the Epoxy glue and chopped fibre glass paste penetrate the holes and make it much stronger. I placed the L brackets along the inner skin and bulkhead, with 6mm x 50mm strips at the top and bottom. As these would be much stronger when bolting the bulkheads together. In all I used 1 3/4 lb of fibre glass to glue in all the brackets, I know this sounds a lot but it was needed.

Martins Plastics Ltd


Motor connection hold with foam in place.Motor connection hold with foam in place.

The Connecting to earth to the Bulkhead Bracing boltThe Connecting to earth to the Bulkhead Bracing bolt




Main Mast, Top Walkway, Radars and Other Metal Work

Peter finished making the main mast structure, I was making the 8 sided radar diffuser and I thought it would better if I made it from beech hardwood as this would be easier to work. I decided not to make the awkward diffusers as there were many other things to do on the mast and it would not spoil the looks.

I decided to use 2mm brass plate as the foundation for the main radar walkway side and forward lights. This I screwed down with stainless steel self tapping screws.
Well as you know, we all break old radios, record players and other items for bearings, pulleys, plates, motors and lots of other bits and bobs!
So when I came to construct the main radar shaft I used two oilite bushes that I inserted into brass tubing. Also I used stainless steel shaft as this would not rust. I mounted the radar motor upside down onto a piece of Paxoclyn, a very hard substance and a good insulator. I used two small connectors, one from the motor to the stainless steel rod and one to connect the top rod.

Halfway up I inserted a small pulley as this was to drive the secondary radar. I also made a door in the rear of the main mast as this would help in any maintenance that I would have to do. The last bearing which had to support the main radar was at the very top and I tried make it look like the real thing with a gearbox and plates.

When making the horn pod I wondered what I should make the horns from and I came up with an idea of using tips from a pen that we used to use at work. These were chrome plated and looked like the real thing.
I drilled out the holes with 3mm Bosch Brad Point wood drill bit as these have a centre point and the drill bit does not wander across the wood. After this was done I then found a steep sided countersink to make the correct shaped hole and then glued them in.


Metal Walkway Frames Near the Top of the Mast

These walkways above the hooters were extremely difficult and baffled an old sod like me but after a little thought I came up with an idea. I would have to make a jig for the ladder parts. The main stems were 110mm long and made out of 3mm square brass.
There are 11 pieces in each of the walkways of 1.5mm brass rod that was inserted into holes drilled into the brass box. There was a 3mm sq piece of brass box plus a piece of brass strip half way down and at very end. (Sorry about the poor photos as I didn't think I was going to make a website.) They were mostly silver soldered together.




I made the walkway hand rails from 1.5mm brass rod and these were 18mm high.

There was also a middle support beam also in 3mm square brass x 85mm long which had to be at an angle with a small connector box section near the front.
I had to make 4 of these so it took a good deal of time and effort. I was NOT looking forward to inserting these walkways into the main mast but as it turned out it was a straightforward job to do. These were all inserted 20 mm into the mast housing and then all glued in with Epoxy glue.
They are now very strong. The middle set of beams were made with similar materials but later, when in use the rod front plate fell off. As you can see it still needs a little touch up.

The walkway directly under the top Radar

All the brass box that I used was 3mm square with 1.5mm rod for the hand rails, including 1mm brass sheet.

To explain how I made it would take a great deal of time to do and I do not want to bore you all.  
Just to say that I had to make two lots of framework. One for the top walkway and the main frame to hold it all together. It seems I am very good at silver soldering as it is all very strong indeed.

Main Radar Unit

I tried to make the main radar look like the real one.


Of course it’s not exactly right but it’s good enough for me.
You wouldn't think that there are 28 small parts to it but there are you know. Where you say! They’re made from Ramin, ply, brass and many other bits and pieces.





Main Mast Secondary and Bridge Roof Radars

This radar was little bit difficult and fiddly to make.

Yes it does show screw heads on the side plate and needs a little touch up paint. (It is well used on ponds and on rivers.)
The main bearing I used was from an old record player and this was inserted into the ply outer shell as it had a plate attached to it.

I used a rubber band that I had taken out of a cassette player as well. This was attached onto the small pulley on the main radar shaft. It seemed to work very well.
I used a small geared down motor that I had bought when I went to the Model Exhibition sometime ago and I used it for the radar on the bridge roof. It was driven by a 1.5 volt battery and it could, if left on, last a week before the battery gave out.