Ace sloop First build - RC Groups
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Jan 02, 2013, 02:18 PM
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Build Log

Ace sloop First build


I have experience in woodworking and furniture finishing but this is my first swim in the pool of small boat model making. My Christmas present is the
1109 Ace Racing Sloop made by Dumas. I am very happy to see there are several Ace Racing Sloop builders here.

My initial comments on opening the kit "Ace Sloop
The first thing I noticed was the directions do not appear to be very well formatted. They are on a single sheet of paper, single spaced as one large paragraph that is about 3/4's of the page. The drawings of the ship and its pieces on a seperate and much larger sheet of paper are clear but I am unsure as to how I am going to do the detail work which is what it is all about. For example, shaping the hull and deck pieces so that they fit together with out an ugly seam. I was hoping to find a YouTube video showing someone putting together the hull, or deck to hull, without having an ugly joint.

Bombs away. Starting a Building Log.

Thanks very much,

Jim Lee
17" Ace Racing Sloop
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Jan 02, 2013, 02:47 PM
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marter1229's Avatar

Jan 02, 2013, 02:48 PM
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First step on Acer Sloop

Hi sailors,

I am hoping for this to be the first post on a kit build log for an Ace Sloop by Dumas. This is my very first build attempt so please be easy on me.
I will quote from the directions with my many questions as follows. If any of you guys who are actually working on this boat are tuned in to the forum that would exceed my wildest expectations. Tell me if quoting directly from the directions helps or hurts my cause.

Feel very free to suggest other writing formats for asking all my tenderfoot questions.At least you will see how terse the directions are. These guys are probably Unix developers in their spare time.

"Cut end of backbone at angle to fit Stem #A and Transom #G."
?? I pretty much get this except I am wondering if there is any way to be accurate on angle that I cut for the transom.

"Cement on Stem #A.."
?? I am not sure from the drawings exaclty where Stem #A connects to the backbone. My best guess is where you see it in the pictures I uploaded. Butted against the very front of the backbone.

"and Transom #G, then add Bulkheads #B, C, D, E, F" also Bulkhead #K"
?? All pretty clear but what about Bulkhead #C ? All the other bulkheads have a positive fit but #C's indent is wider than the backbone. How do I attach that firmly and make sure it is centered? I am thinking of attaching another piece of wood on each side of the backbone to take up the empty space that the bulkhead leaves.

“also Bulkhead #K”
?? I see where this bulkhead goes but I do not understand the note that you may be able to see that says “Dowels to anchor keel plate” and “Bulkhead to anchor Keel Plate”. It is not clear to me if I need to do anything other than simply glue the Bulkhead #K between the two other Bulkheads.

A couple of other questions:
? - Is it normal for the directions to be this terse? All the directions are single spaced and only take up 3/4’s of a single page. Do other models have more detailed instructions?

? - Is there a book or video that can show me the finer points of building that I will need to know when making important joints like at the bottom of the hull?
Thanks very much,
Jim Lee

Pictures a following:

Jan 02, 2013, 03:11 PM
Don't lie to my dog.
Gregg28's Avatar
There are several threads on here for this build for you to draw from. Plus the authors are still around to ask questions. Good Luck and Enjoy!
Jan 04, 2013, 12:53 AM
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Drifter1soc's Avatar
Good luck to ya. They look just like Dumas plans. That is how they do it. The only advice I can give you is take the plans to Staples and make yourself some copies of them and save the originals in a tube. Don't build on them. Once you get too much stuff on the plans or accidentally cut them where you need to read something, it's nice to have backups.
Jan 04, 2013, 09:32 AM

building on plans

When I want to build over the kit plans, I put a sheet of wax paper on top. You can see through it and save making a mess of the plans.
Jan 10, 2013, 07:54 PM
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Jan 10, 2013, 08:28 PM
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Hi all,

Please ignore that last post. It was a gutter ball.

I am very happy to say that I have made some more progress on my Sailboat and have learned alot more about model ship buildling and the difference between RC oriented boats and non-RC. This is an RC and I have taken some advice and have a Midwest Products Skipjack on its way.

I have no great need to actually sail my model boat but this is what Santa bought me and I need to start somewhere. I have a million questions so I will try to limit myself to the most important ones. I have glued on the first piece of mahogony to the side and want to know if what you see below makes sense. I used Titebond II glue which I know is not waterproof but I could not find Titebond III. I am planning to put silicone caulking on all the below waterline seams just in case I get the notion to actually float this boat. I used CA glue, both thick and thin, on the framing. I thought that I needed to use white glue on this side because there is so much more area I am gluing. Does that make sense?

I wet the piece of mahgony before I glued it. I am experimenting with a Dremel flexible shaft using the saw you should see below at the lowest speed I can get. Which as you all probably know is not very slow. I am not real happy with the way it cuts the mahogany. It can do some rather ugly tear outs. Would you guys use a nice stiff back stroke handsaw to trim the mahogony down to size? The Dremel seems to work well when using the drum sander for evening things out. I have read that the Foredom rotary tool is a little more sophisticated than the Dremel, dremel. I am real interested to hear about any of you using a power rotary tool and what you find it good, and bad, for.

A very specific question for Ace Sloop Dumas builders is whether the square piece of metal you see below is supposed to be shaped into my rudder? I have seen nothing in my kit that resembled the rudder I have seen on other Ace Sloops.

Is there any place that I could see a video/s of builders doing these really elementary steps in building wooden models? I have looked all over YouTube land and have not found anything. Any ways of practicing these skills without wrecking your one and only, and relatively expensive, project? I guess that I am learning from having to fix my mistakes but I have a feeling the final product might show that a little too clearly.

Thank you all very much for helping this noob off the ground.

Jim Lee

Pictures a following:

Jan 11, 2013, 11:08 PM
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Vince Hoffmann's Avatar
I gave up on my Ace, the mahogony veneer was &$*@!!! It resides in my closet now. I'll be watching your build, perhaps you will give me new enthusiasm to get back to my model!
Jan 12, 2013, 05:04 AM
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i have never like the wood in Dumas kits and most of the time just use the kit wood for a pattern, do not give up on building though, just take your time and have fun, after a while building models becomes almost an addiction , lol for me anyway lol
Jan 14, 2013, 07:24 PM
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Let us just say I am learning alot..which is what it is all about I think.
I have the bottom and the sides on and poly'ed. Now for the top.

Question: When I put the top on I will not longer have access to the two tiny dowels that hold
up the ballast. I thought the dowels were not glued for possible removal in the future but if I am putting the top back on I am guessing that they need to be glued in.

If the dowels are glued in what is the point of using dowels. Why not just epoxy the keel in?
Is it for mishaps that could happen when the water gets too shallow?

I am also starting on my Midwest Skipjack tomorrow. I got half a page directions for this boat and 83 pages and two plan drawings for the Skipjack.

Is this Ace sloop considered a 'scratch build' or is that when you design and build from the ground up?

Jim Lee

Ace Sloop Dumas
Jan 19, 2013, 08:44 AM
Hi Jim Lee, as a first time builder you are flying along in leaps and bounds. From your questions I can also see that you are learning buckets of knowledge in the craft of boat building. As you build, observe your boat from all angles to see how the curves all join up at the ends, and how they flow to get there. Take a strip of wood and see how it bends onto the frames before gluing the part on. The strip will show where the frames are low or high. Sand the frames to achieve the flowing lines and not build in the bulges. Dumas always puts in a frame that is the wrong size to try your patience and frustrate you. Because it is a kit, don't asume it is perfect. Always look for ways to improve and catch the mistakes they made. On the keel dowls, I would use brass machine screws with nuts glued in place. If you can't get to it again, make it permanant, your thought to epoxy it in sounds like a great idea too. Mahogany is terrible for splitting, if I have to sand off an inch to get to where I want, then that is what it takes to get it done. The Dumas plans are poorly drawn at the bow. From the lines (arrow) the stringers end at the bow block. The other angle (circle) shows the stringers up on the bow block. Your sides are probably on by now, so sand out a nice curve or line to the bow and carry on. You have two paths to take. 1) this is too hard and I quit, or 2) I learned something today and won't do that again. The more "I won't do that agains" you gather up, the closer to building your dream yacht you will be. Take a break for a day, a week, or a month, but never give up.
Feb 01, 2013, 04:46 PM
Hi Jimmy Lee, any progress on your sloop? If you are busy working on your skipjack instead, can we see some pictures? Post them here and we can watch them both take shape. Thanks. As to the couple of questions you had...... Although Dumas makes their kits without too much explaination for building, no it is not a scratch build. A scratch build gives you nothing. You draw some plans, or find some, and start cutting wood from plywood sheets and ripping stringers from pine boards. All measured and cut by you. You have to find all the parts to make your boat. The Ace Sloop has die cut frames that you popped out to start. The kit has provided all the things to finish one yacht as pictured on the box. As to just using glue on the keel, it is difficult to glue metal. A bump could seperate things. Two bolts for insurance isn't going to hurt things in the end. Good Luck.
Feb 01, 2013, 05:03 PM
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seefest's Avatar
The keelson and stringers need to terminate on top of the bow block. Otherwise it will be tough to lay the bottom planking down fair.
I just stumbled onto this thread. I built an Ace when I was in my early teens, another when my nephew was young, and now another for my 3.5 year old son.
My latest kit was very discouraging. Frames that don't fit on the backbone, cheap balsa stringers, cheap split mahogany.........very poor kit.
I threw most of the wood away and am only using the frames and mahogany deck from the kit. I bought a new backbone, hardwood stringers and have planked it with balsa(as I'm going to paint the hull anyways).
Anyway, its a beginners kit which is not very well suited for beginners(I'm not a begginer, I've been building boats for 30+ years)

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