Dumas Chris Craft Runabout - RC Groups
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Jan 04, 2005, 10:17 PM
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Dumas Chris Craft Runabout

I received the Dumas Chris Craft Runabout Model 1230 for Xmas from my wife.

I'm still pretty new to boat modeling, so as could be expected I'm a little nervous jumping in full tilt into such a model. My last model was Constructo's Blue Nose.

I have a couple of questions that I'm hoping someone can help me answer:

1. Is there a book, magazine or website (other than this site) that I should read to get add'l tips about building such a model.

2. Has anyone built this model, if so do you have any general hints or suggestions?

3. Specifically, other than an exacto knife set and a dremel tool what tools should I invest in? Do these kits need a plank bender? How about airbrush set for the finishes and paint?

I'm clueless when it comes to 'finishing' the boat, and thus will probably be posting a lot of questions about the finishing steps (what do people use, where do they get it...).

Thanks in advance. Hopefully this will be the first of many posts for me!!
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Jan 05, 2005, 04:10 AM
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OhioMike's Avatar
I'm hopeing CG Bob will jump in here and discuss with you finishing techniques, he's a master at it. I think.....i'm qualified to discuss tools though and so far, you've got two of the most inportant and most used already. One other i might suggest that i use frequently is sanding bars of various sizes. You can go to the expense of buying them at a well equiped hobby shop with the self-adhesive sand paper, or you can make your own and just use carpet tape to hold sand paper to them like i do. Plank benders are great tools for almost an exact specific situation with an exact location on most hulls! Spend the money on a PVC tube, with an end cap, fill it with scalding hot water and dip the planks for the forward hull in that, 15 minutes later, you can bend easy to your hearts content! Tape, tack, or clamp them in place to hold till they dry and wala!!!!! A variety of adhesives is another good investment, many i know swear by CA and use it exclusively for their KIT building, i do to with a good dose of various epoxies and even the old standard Elmers wood glue! Another thing i use so frequently, i dont know how i could do without them now, is the old standard clothes pin as a clamp. I mean the spring ones. You take half of them and turn each peg around so you end up with a flat narrow clamp surface. They take a little skill cause they want to bite you occasionaly when you open them....You'll learn that technique though soon enough! Good luck and remember, Follow the directions when building. Thats after haveing read them 4-5 times before even starting construction. Not only will this be an adventure with a positive outcome (with a healthy dose of patience!), but it will become an addiction and soon you'll be looking at projects where only plans are available! Web sites also abound although the printed press for model ship building has declined over the years. Theres a web site called, "The mother of all maritime links", they have several modeling sections (With hundreds of other web sites listed as links) among a thousand other things nauticle related. Here though is a great place to start. Look at Pat trittles threads in this section about his builds, another Master at work! Hope this helps!
Jan 05, 2005, 10:25 PM
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Is there a particular online hobby shop that is good to order supplies and tools from? I'm struggling to find a good one in my area.
Jan 06, 2005, 11:03 AM
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escipion's Avatar
Try this site for hobby tools: http://www.micromark.com/
Artesania Latina have some interesting tools, you can find them in http://www.towerhobbies.com/

Good luck
Jan 07, 2005, 11:59 AM
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First off, check out the thread on the Typhoon. You'll find many tips and ideas in that thread. I've built both the Dumas Barrellback and the Runabout and am now currently building the Typhoon. The Dumas instructions are very well written so as long as you follow the instructions, you'll be fine.

Take your time building and fitting the parts and planks. I didn't use a plank bender on my boats. The instructions has a list of tools that you may need. Sanding blocks, a model sized plane and a Dremel with a cut-off wheel and a sanding drum is pretty much mostly what you need.

These boats take quite a bit of time to do but the end results are SO woth it!!
Jan 08, 2005, 02:56 PM
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P. Tritle's Avatar
Chi, The first Chris Craft I built was the 24' Runabout, and from there I was hooked. Beyond the Dremmel rotary tools you won't need much, but for doing the ply sub-planking a scroll or band saw would be real helpfull. But, a cheeper alternative for cutting the ply is a simple pair of "Handy Cut" loppers from Sears. They work really well on both the ply and mahogany.
For bending the planks, I make a holding fixture from scrap pine and use a Monocoat Iron set at full throttle to steam the wetted mahogany planks. If you would like to see a photo of how that works I'll be happy to take one and post it up.
You might also look up the thread on the 19' Racing Runabout, the structure is a bit simpler, but there's some detailed info regarding the fiberglass finish.
Jan 08, 2005, 05:37 PM
CG Bob's Avatar
First - read the directions SEVERAL TIMES before you even start construction. I found several places where it was easier and better to do some steps way before the directions call them out: especially when gluing 1/8 inch square stock to the frames for hatch or deck supports.

Don't try to apply a coat of varnish to the entire boat in one session - you'll end up with lots of drips and runs. I spent 5 days applying one coat of finish to the entire boat: stern; upper deck; port side; starboard side; and bottom. I used several differnt jigs and clamps when I applied my finish, so each coat was applied to as horizontal a surface as possible.

Check out Wooden Boat Magazine - a few years ago they had an article on how not to apply varnish. I followed that article when I applied the finish on my runabout.
Last edited by CG Bob; Jan 08, 2005 at 05:42 PM.
Jan 08, 2005, 08:26 PM
Dragon Slayer
ropanach's Avatar
whin you built your trailor, I assume it's aluminium, how did you attach all the parts together, was it welded, it looks quite good.
Jan 08, 2005, 09:27 PM
CG Bob's Avatar
I built the trailer from brass channel and square tube. Some R/C car rims and tires were uses. The fenders are sheet brass. All brass was silver soldered together with a small butrane torch. The finished trailer was coated with a cold galvanizing zinc spray - most trailers I looked at were galvanized. Here's another discussion on model boat trailers.
Jan 09, 2005, 08:46 PM
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Thanks All. I spent the weekend putting together my workspace and actually started separating out the frames tonight....

I'll keep you posted as I go.
Jan 09, 2005, 10:57 PM
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CG Bob, did you cover your C-C with glass or is it varnished only? Looks very nice!

Good luck with your project chi buck! that one is onmy wish list! I look forward to seeing how you progress!
Jan 10, 2005, 09:58 AM
CG Bob's Avatar
After I applied the stains, I applied a coat of finishing resin (Bob Smith Industries - labeled for the LHS). The first coat of finishing resin was applied with an acid brush and squeegees. After the first coat cured, the hull was sanded and several more coats of epoxy were applied. After four coats of epoxy and sanding, I had a smooth hull, and applied the bottom paint (Floquil CSX Enchantment Blue), Christ Craft decals, name and registration. I applied about 10 more coats of finishing resin, thinned with alcohol, and applied with a 1 inch disposable foam brush. The hull was lightly wet sanded after each full coat of resin was applied. After the last coat of resin was applied, the hull was wet sanded with 1000 grit paper. I applied three coats of Minwax Helsmand Gloss Varnish; each coat was wet sanded with 1000 grit. The final coat was wet sanded with 200 grit paper, and polished with automotive polishing compound.
Jan 10, 2005, 12:32 PM
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Thanks CG Bob for the info on the finish build-up! Very nice boat you have there!
Jan 10, 2005, 06:13 PM
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CG Bob - I apologize if this is a stupid question.

Do I have the order right on your finish:
- Stain
- Finishing Resin - Is this the BSI Finish Cure Epoxy? - 4 coats
- Paint/Decals
- Finish Resin (same kind as before) - 10 coats
- Minwax Helsmand Gloss Varnish
- Auto Polishing Compound

It looks like you didn't use any fiberglass, is this because you wanted to use more coats of resin instead?

What's the advantage to using fiberglass vs additional coats of resin?
Jan 10, 2005, 09:33 PM
CG Bob's Avatar
chi_buck -
You got the finish order right. I think it was the BSI Finish Cure epoxy I used - I built the boat in 1999 when I was stationed at USCG Air Station Clearwater, FL. I forgot the exact number of coats of resin I applied. The first several coats were applied full strength (just the two part epoxy mix). After painting the hull bottom and applying decals/name, the remaining coast of epoxy were thinned with rubbing alcohol. No fiberglass cloth was used, mainly because I didn't want to fill the weave with resin. I think all my coats of resin are thinner than fiberglass cloth and several coats of resin. The fiberglass cloth adds some strength to the hull, and can keep seams from opening up. A lot of double planked boats (WWII PT boats, Chris Crafts, et al) used a layer of Dynel cloth between the layers of planking for much the same reason - add additional strength to the hull.

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