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Posted by augustus | Jul 03, 2015 @ 04:08 PM | 4,061 Views
With our continued Funky Extra Wet Spring-Summer my Drydock pretty much got Washed Out... Had to pack everything up as I had to keep pulling my Kids out of my Parts Boxes. That and my wife was shining the Evil Eye on all the Boat Parts Lovingly stacked by the back door.

I was beginning to worry that she might drop the Lot in the Recycle Bin...

Should have the Drydock Crew back to work after the July 4th Weekend...

First back in the Drydock will be Cranking Up a Vintage Dumas Drag-N-Fly...
Had the Mechanicals apart, cleaned and back together.
Starter should be here today or tomorrow.
Looking forward to getting her running.
She should be a bit faster than my Zipkits Tugsters...

Sorry no photos this time round.

Until next time,


Except for this one...
She sure is Purty!
Posted by augustus | Jun 08, 2015 @ 04:41 PM | 4,073 Views
Well it's been about six weeks since my last update...

We've had a Lot of Funky Weather here in Southeast Texas.
Complete with Severe Thunderstorms, Tornados and Flooding.
My Drydock was Flooded for for an entire week on two different occasions.
Had rainy weather roll in after a paint day and foul up the paint.
On another occasion my neighbor decided to run his weed eater and lawn blower after another paint day.

I've got so much paint on "Mr Orion" now it may capsize when we launch...
But even with all the hullabaloo we are nearing completion...

The Hull is ready for final assembly.
The Wheelhouse and Mast are being wired for lights.
The Deck and Hatch are ready for final assembly.

All in all I'm liking the way it's coming together.

Some Photos:

Thanks for looking...

-...Continue Reading
Posted by augustus | Apr 26, 2015 @ 08:54 AM | 4,783 Views
Have made decent progress over the past three weeks.
Still focusing on Wheelhouse Details. Inside and Out.

Got the Hardwood Floors Installed.
The Chart Table as mostly done...
Trash Can mostly done.
Captain's Chair done enough.
Extended the dashboard a bit to make room for Nav Gear.

Work continues on Mast.
Flag Staff added (2)
Middle and Lower Light Platforms added.
Still reading up on Light Installation on the Mast...
So things are moving slow...

Got some Primer on the Mast Base.
Flat White on Deck, Hatch and Wheelhouse.
Starting to look like a Boat.

Some Photos:

Posted by augustus | Apr 09, 2015 @ 05:19 PM | 4,837 Views
Work continues on Tugster "Mr Orion".

Got the Inside paint Satin White laid down on Hull, Deck and Hatch.
With this done it's just about ready to mate the Deck to Hull.

Continued work on details for Wheelhouse.
Built up the Mast base from scrap 1/8" ply.
Cut 1/4" Brass tube for mast.
Built Main Exhaust Stack from 1/4" Brass tube.
Built Auxillary Exhaust from 1/8" Brass tube.
Drilled mounting holes for Exhausts and Mast in Mast Base.
Built Map Table from scrap 1/8" ply, sheathed in Mahogany.
Built up Captain's Chair Pedestal from 1/8" ply and 3/16" Brass tube.

Still have a lot to do...
Need to cut a groove in Mast Base for Wiring Mast Lights.
Need to finish up Mast, Light Platforms, Flag Pole/Yard...
Still plan to add more fittings to Wheelhouses roof.
More fittings for Deck.
Mahogany Floor for Wheelhouses.
Pretty much More of everything...

Some Photos:

Posted by augustus | Apr 02, 2015 @ 11:01 AM | 4,828 Views
Made good progress over the past week.

Got the Dumas Prop Shaft and Stuffing Box cut down.
Used my Dremel Saw Max with a Cutoff Wheel to cut the Brass Stuffing Box and Stainless Propshaft Seperately. Then further used the Cutoff wheel to shape the Prop Shaft followed by Files and Sandpaper to finish the Shaft and Stuffing Box.

Added a brass Oiling Tube to the Stuffing Box.
First I wrapped 120 grit Sandpaper around the Stuffing Box and sanded the mating surface of the Oil Tube to the proper Fish Mouth shape. Next Soldered the Oil Tube to the Stuffing Box using Silver Solder and Micro Torch. Then going through the Oil Tube, I drilled through into the Stuffing Box. Then cleaned it all up with 200 Grit Sandpaper and inspected to make sure everything looked good.

Got the Rudder Support Block glued in with Hot Stuff Thick CA.
Kept adding the Thick Stuff in layers until all the seams were Proud, then sanded the glue down smooth once cured.
Then installed the Running Gear (from Motor to Prop) in position Dry, No Glue! To get everything lined up for Rudder Installation.
Next I Dry Fit the Servo/Radio Shelf into position and using the the kit provided Drill Guide, drilled the Rudder Shaft hole.
Everything Lines Up pretty nice.

Used Thick CA and Accelerator to Tack the Stuffing Box and Rudder Tube in place.
Using Evergreen Strips, Thick CA and Accelerator, I built a Dam around the Stuffing Box and filled it with Unthinned Zpoxy. Be Sure Dam Is Sealed!!! (note to...Continue Reading
Posted by augustus | Mar 26, 2015 @ 08:42 AM | 5,048 Views
Got a Good bit Done on Springer Tug "Mr ORION" last night.

Selected the Running Gear:
Dumas M4 Shaft and Stuffing Tube.
Raboesch Brass Prop 174-08 4BL-45-L-M4.
Using the Kit supplied Rudder.

Will need to trim Stuffing Tube and Shaft to proper length.
Reinstall the Bushing in the Trimmed end of Stuffing Tube after Cutting to length.
Measure Three Times cut Once!
Also plan to Install an Oiling Tube on Stuffing Tube using Silver Solder.

Back on the Hull:
Got the Rudder Support Block cut and shaped, and the Equipment Shelf sanded
to fit in its place in the hull.

Using Z-Poxy thinned with Denatured Alcohol, 60/40 Z-Poxy to Alcohol mix.
Got two coats applied to Inside of Hull, Hatch Cover, Underside Of Deck, Equipment Shelf and Rudder Block.

After my first Go working with Thinned Epoxy I Am Sold!
It is "Palm Smacking Forehead" Good!!!
I'm still getting a Feel for the Amount of Alcohol to add to the Mix...
But Man! My first impressions are Outstanding..!

Also applied a coat of Unthinned Z-Poxy to inside of Ladder Trunk that will be
mounted on the Forward side of Wheelhouse... The Crew needed a way to get
to the Head without going outside...
This thing is gonna take a Lot of Sanding to get straight...
But in the End I believe it will work.
I used Blue Masking Tape on the Outside of the Ladder Trunk to hold the Z-Poxy
in while it cured. Had to keep rolling and turning the piece until the Z-Poxy began
to set up.

That's it for now.
Here are some Photos...

Posted by augustus | Mar 25, 2015 @ 08:24 AM | 5,654 Views
After looking at the Helm area I decided it just wasn't cutting it.
Even though I'm not really going for a Fully Scale build I thought I could do better.
Another thing that got me thinking about redoing the helm was the arrival of the Crew... ;-)

In any event I decided to add a Pedistle for the Wheel to be mounted on, and rebuilt the Throttle Housing.
I also built up the Captain's Chair.
Got the Dashboard and wooden Inside Hatch sanded and Sealed with Minwax Polyutrthane.

I'm liking it much better over all.
Still need to finish up the Chair, and build a mounting Pedistle...
And I'm considering adding a couple of Bunks on the back wall.
We'll have to see about that.

Plan to get back to completing the Lower Hull today.
Need to add a couple coats of thinned resin and some sand it down again.
Get the Running Gear mounted then attach the Deck.

Here are a photo or two.

Posted by augustus | Mar 14, 2015 @ 06:20 PM | 4,966 Views
After two plus weeks of Rain... Gus's Drydock is finally Dry again an back in action.

Don't get me wrong, after nearly Five Years of Drought Conditions I Thank The Great Sky Admiral for all the Rain... Our Lakes and Waterways are back to Plan Levels or a little over... I'll Take It.

In any event I have been slowly coming up with an Interior for the Wheelhouses.
Nothing fancy as I'm trying to get a handle on scratch building.
But Hopfully decent.

Going to be a 1/18ish boat, so I can use some readily available figures that are out there.

Also plan to add some Lighting to this boat.

Here are a few photos:
The First is my Washed Out Drydock...
I'm using 1/16 x 1/8 Mahogany strips for Trim and plan to use 1/16 x 1/4 strips for the Floor.

Posted by augustus | Feb 26, 2015 @ 03:09 PM | 6,105 Views
Got a little work done on "MR ORION' s" Wheelhouse.

Decided to go with a Port Hole style window on the wheelhouse door.
Sandwiched two pieces of 0.64mm Evergreen sheet cut to receive port hole "glass".
Using some 0.50mm or so, clear plastic recycled from packing material from a Gaming Headset I bought last year, for Windows.

Was able to cut Windows for the entire wheelhouse from the recycled packing material. Glued up a test piece on some scrap wood using CA Gel. If the CA Glue reacts with the clear plastic I'll have to find an alternate adhesive.

Planning to add a simple 90 degree working handle to the wheelhouse door made from Brass Rod...

Some photos.
Posted by augustus | Feb 25, 2015 @ 06:31 PM | 6,409 Views
Finally found some time to make a new Entry.

Work on "MR ORION" continues in bits and pieces here and there.

My Three, soon to be Four Year Old Son's Birthday is TOMORROW. With the Party this coming weekend, most of my free time has been aimed in that direction. The left over Free Time was taken up with Venison Sausage making. But now most of the Party Prep is Done, and the Sausage is in the Smoke House...

So time for a Model Building Break.

Got the Wheelhouse Filled, Sanded and in Primer.
Looking real nice.
Then decided to add a Door.
Got the Door Cut in to the Wheelhouse wall.
Laid out 2 pieces of 0.6mm Evergreen for the Door and got them Cut and Trimmed.
Still need to decide on, and cut out, the Window for the Door.
Planning to do an Interior in the Wheelhouse this time.
Still working on Layout and gathering pieces for it

I also got most of the Hull Glassed In before the Weather turned Cold and Wet.
Still need to add Glass on the Starboard Side and Stern.

I got the little Keel built.
This go round I added an extra layer of 1/8" Ply from Scraps to the Keel.
I also Glasses the Keel.
Planning to use Different Running Gear on this Boat... 4mm Shaft...
As much to get a Feel for the New Gear as anything else...
With a Four Blade Brass Prop and a Scratch Built Rudder.
Not sure if I'll attempt Flanking Rudders on this Boat.
But I'm thinking on it.

Here are a few Photos:

Posted by augustus | Feb 19, 2015 @ 01:17 PM | 7,270 Views
Alice Cooper's St. Valentine's Day Show ROCKED!!!

Going to eat Mexican Food at a new place(New to me) down the road from the house was a BAD idea... Five daze later I'm finally getting back in the saddle.

Got "MR ORION's" hull sanded down. Next step will be to Glass it in.
This will be my first go at Fiberglass. Been reading on the subject, hopefully it will go on smooth. Just waiting on Temps to go up a bit in my outdoor work area.

Also finished up the Visor on the Wheelhouse.
Now I'm trying to decide if I will be adding any interior detail befor I proceed to button up the Wheelhouse-Hatch area...

I did order a Twin Tugster from ZippKits earlier this week.
Tracking says it should be here today. Planning to build out the Kentucky Wheelhouse for the Twin Screw hull.

Posted by augustus | Feb 13, 2015 @ 09:13 AM | 5,037 Views
Got the Bottom Skin on last night.

Used Planking Clamps from MicroMark for the most part to hold the Bottom Skin in place after gluing with Titebond II. I like the results. The Rib Clamps aren't cheap at $20 Dollars for 10, if you buy two or more sets of 10 you can get them for $17.50 per set... They are Handy. Just ordered a few more sets. Titebond II should be good enough as I will be Glassing in the Hull.

Used a Tamiya Handy Dril and a 0.5mm bit to drill pilot holes for the Rib Clamps. I've been using the Handy Drill for about three months now... It's a Handy, Low RPM alternative to my many Pin Vices for use with Small to Tiny rotary attachments. And it's pretty much tooless use, with a locking lug for bit changes.

Happy Boating/Building,

Posted by augustus | Feb 12, 2015 @ 08:34 PM | 5,203 Views
Got the Hull and Wheelhouse Squared (Faired) up.
Ready to Skin the Bottom.

Still need to lay out the Visor for the roof of the Wheelhouse,
get the Visor cut out and beveled and come up with a Basic interior before I proceed with assembly.

Hoping I can get a lot of the Hull done tomorrow through the Weekend.

But Most of Saturday will be a Wash, Build Wise...
Taking my Honey to see Alice Copper for St. Valentine's Day...
Nothing says "l Love You" quite like Simulated Decapitation, Evisceration and Mutilation... All done to CRANKING Rock Anthems from our Youth.

Posted by augustus | Feb 10, 2015 @ 01:20 PM | 5,888 Views
Got the Wheelhouse glued up last night.

It went together much easier and Cleaner than the First Wheelhouse.
On the First Tug I filed Angles on the Forward Edges of the Side Walls and All Edges of the Two Forward pieces of the Wheelhouse going for a Picture Frame type joint... it was a Complete PITA, and the mating surfaces didn't mate up too well, as it was done by File, Hand and Eyeball.

On this second Wheelhouse, I only filed an angle in the Upper edge of the Lower Panel. Leaving the other edges Square, so that the Upper section with the Main Windows sits down in the Filled Angle on the lower panel. It went together Much Better. And should make for a Stronger Wheelhouse overall.

I will lay out a new Roof, with some Overhang on the Sides. Also want to add a Sun Visor to the Roof Line.

Posted by augustus | Feb 09, 2015 @ 09:22 PM | 5,952 Views
We have had some nice weather the past few days, almost Spring Like.

Thanking advantage of the warm days, I went ahead and prepped the Hull Members of Tugster Number Two. Got everything Sanded and Cleaned over the past couple days. Glued up the Hull structure yesterday. Still need to Fare up the Ribs of the hull before I can skin the Bottom.

Started gluing up the Wheelhouse today.
Hope to finish the wheelhouse structure tonight.

Posted by augustus | Jan 31, 2015 @ 02:25 PM | 5,258 Views
Working up a design for a Boat Box for the Springer Tugs I'm building.
Loosely based on a couple boxes I've seen here on RCG...
I been Thread Hopping so much lately I don't remember from whom I got the idea.
If I run across them again I'll add their names to keep it straight.

I still need to modify the design to add a place for a Radio.
But there is plenty of room under the boat for Batteries and Tools.

Picked up an inexpensive 4'x8' sheet of 1/4" Oak plywood from Lowe's.
Glued together with Hot Stuff CA Glue.
Stained with Minwax Red Oak.
Distressed it a bit with Hammer and Saw, and left some Glue Over Run for a Used and Abused look. Finished with six coats Rust-Oleum Satin Clear.
Used Barge Cement to glue down some Pig Skin on the runners to protect the Hull. Sealed the leather with Tandy Super Sheen.

Posted by augustus | Jan 27, 2015 @ 06:12 PM | 5,720 Views
Got a bit more done on "MR ELYAS" yesterday and today.

Had my first go at Building with Brass, and Torch Soldering.

I used 7/16" Tubing for the Uprights of the Bit and 1/4" Tubing for the Cross Bar.
Used 0.040" Brass Sheet for the Endcaps, and Rossin Core Solder.
The Solder I used is probably too small in diameter... Might need to get some heaver solder...

Took a couple hours with Files and various Grit Sanding Sticks to clean up my Cotton Candy style soldering job. But in the end it came out pretty decent,

So I go the Bit finished and Painted last night.
Three coats of Rust-Oleum Flat-Red Primer.
Then Two Light coats of Krylon Brass Metalic.
I used the same mix on the Brass-Orange for the color on the rest of the boat.
Bam Bam Elyas is my ORANGE Boy...

Also Mounted 3/4" x 1" Cross Bracing on the under side of the Deck, to drill into, to support the Bit. Did I mention my Sweet Lad is a tad Heavy Handed?

And I got the Bit mounting location marked out.
Used Blue Masking Tape to keep the progressively larger drill bits from wandering and stop the drill bits from lifting a splinter, worked Great.

Today I got the Bit Glued in.

I had picked up some Tamiya 1/10 scale Truck Tires a couple weeks back for the Push Knees. I got them Cut, Trimmed and Installed with Hot Stuff Thick CA Glue today.

All in all, I'm pretty happy with "MR ELYAS" so far.
Still have a little paint touch up do.
Order the Name for the Stern, and get that mounted.
Then a few clear coats to lock everything in.
And tidy up the Ballast and Wiring.

And this Tug will be Done.

Posted by augustus | Jan 26, 2015 @ 05:23 PM | 5,442 Views
Tugster Number One is nearing completion.

As I'm building this one for my Three Year Old "Bam Bam" I'm not planning to add a lot of additional detail.

I have two more to build one for my Six Year Old and one for me.
Tugster Two and Three will have a bit more detail added.

Also have several other boats on the waiting list for some Bench Time.
Several PT Boats ranging in scale from 1/32nd, 1/30th and 1/24th.
A 1/200th Bismark to be RC'd...
And a 1/16th LCM-6 is do to arrive today from across the Pond.

Should be a Busy Year...

Here's a Shot of Springer Tug #1 to be named "MR. ELYAS"...
Posted by augustus | Dec 04, 2014 @ 01:17 PM | 5,303 Views
Finally got some Time to Work on Tugster #1..
After spending the Two Weeks leading up to Thanksgiving taking care of Two Sick Sons and a Sick Wife, Bronchitis... now I have this Crud...

But I'm going Stir Crazy... so back to work on Tug #1.

Got All the componet groups assembled and sealed.
Got all the Hardware installed then removed.
Shot Rust-Oleum Prime, White, inside the Hull.

Still waiting on a Shipment of 2s 5000 LiPo batteries to show up...
Turnigy Hard Case, $20 each on Cyber Monday Sale!

Posted by augustus | Nov 11, 2014 @ 08:19 AM | 4,981 Views
Happy Veterans Day!
Thank You for Serving!

Big Thank You to All of Our Brothers and Sisters on Acive Duty today...

B. Elliott
Bravo Company, 1 - 37 Armor (85-87)