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Posts Tagged ‘Model Ships’

Cannon of Blackbeard’s Legendary Queen Anne’s Revenge Finally Raised!

October 31st, 2011

"concretion" encrusted cannon

As one of the most recognizable and renowned pirates in all of sailing lore, Blackbeard (Edward Teach) sailed throughout the Caribbean and up the North American east coast for three years in the early 1700s, building his fleet, wealth, and legend in the process.  The Queen Anne’s Revenge, dreaded flagship of his fleet, came to be known as a formidable vessel; one that was sadly sunk in 1718 as Blackbeard absconded with a wealth of loot. Based on Oracoke Island, on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, Blackbeard ran the ship aground following a week’s long blockade of the harbor in Charleston. Now, some 300 years later, the treasures of this sunken beauty are coming to the surface, exciting the minds and imaginations of scientists and nautical enthusiasts alike. As the largest underwater archeological project in America, the Queen Anne’s Revenge site has fascinated scientists since 1997, with multiple artifacts discovered, studied, and placed on display in museums throughout the country. As some of the grandest prizes, however, the massive cannons from the ship were exceptional finds, treasure troves of great historic import. Twelve cannons have been discovered thus far, with the newest one recently making headlines as it was raised from the wreckage. At 8 feet long, covered with “concretion,” or layers of sediment that form a hard shell, the cannon is a magnificent puzzle that must be carefully unlocked over the course of the next few years.

Handcrafted Model Ship's 24" Queen Anne's Revenge model ship

HMS 24" model of Queen Anne's Revenge

Though Blackbeard had received a pardon following his initial pirate activities, after a brief respite from the sea he soon returned in search of further plunder, leading soon afterwards to his death. Following his success in blockading the port of Charleston, Blackbeard became a much sought after target, pursued by British Lieutenant Robert Maynard under charge of Virgina Governor Alexander Spotswood. In what would prove to be his final battle, Blackbeard and his remaining crew were discovered in late November, 1718, and quickly blockaded by Maynard’s fleet before coming under attack. Returning fire,  Blackbeard’s pirates leapt aboard Maynard’s seemingly empty vessel only to be surprised by sailors hidden below decks. During the brief battle the legendary pirate was struck down by blade, with Maynard taking Blackbeard’s head as a trophy; hanging it from the bow of his ship as he sailed triumphantly back to shore. Though Blackbeard’s life at sea was cut short, he left the world with his fascinating story and a legendary ship that now, 300 years later, is met not with dread, but pure fascination and wonder.

Famous Ship Models, Model Ships, Nautical Decor, Pirate Ship Models , ,

Model Ship Collecting Around the World

March 29th, 2010

Model Ship Collecting Around The World

Model ship collecting is one of the worlds oldest hobbies. In the ancient world, model ships reflected the peoples love and sometimes fear of these outstanding technological advancements. Back then, ships were the most advanced and complex technological achievements in the world. Interest in ships were high due to the impact they had on trade, adventure, and war, among other things. Model ships were used for many different purposes. Some of which coincide with what they are used for today, while other purposes have dropped off completely mostly due to cultural changes. Today, model ship collecting is still a world wide hobby. It seems that our fascination with sea faring vessels remains intact, and the enthusiasm has not died down one bit.

Model Ship Collecting in the Ancient World

Ancient model ships from Greece, Egypt, and Phoenicia were discovered lining the Mediterranean. Using these models as guides, we can determine the cultural influences and economic conditions of the time period. Model ship collecting in the ancient world was done for a variety of reasons. For instance, many model ships served as burial votives for the dead. While this may not be seen very much or at all in modern culture, ancient ship models were also used as toys, household decorations, and as art. Furthermore, the model ships used as household decor could also serve as more than display purposes. Some models were made into lamps or used as drinking appliances.

In Europe, up until the the 18th century almost all model ships that were made were done so strictly for the purpose of showcasing how the actual ship would look when finished. It was not until the Napoleonic wars that model ship collecting became a hobby, and even an art form, in Europe. This was due to imprisoned French and English seamen who created ship models out of random scraps laying around their cell floors. When people began buying these models, the prisoners where supplied with better materials such as ivory to craft much more luxurious models. And by the 1880s Britain was home to three model ship sailing clubs.

Model Ship Collecting in the Modern World

Today model ship collecting around the world is still very popular. They make excellent toys for children, great decorations for households, and fun gifts for those people in your life that you are unsure of what to get come the holidays. Unlike model ships of the yesteryear, in the modern era model ships can be manufactured much more easily. This is because of the industrial revolution that made it so that practically anyone can build a model ship from pre-existing kits. Before that, model ships were built strictly by master artisans who slaved for hours on end in order to create works of art. In spite of this there are still master craftsmen today who take model ship building and collecting very seriously. Furthermore, new to the modern era of model ship collecting are RC boats. RC boats are remote controlled boats that can be fully functional on water. These boats are great fun for young and old alike.

Model ship collecting around the world is as strong as it has ever been. While there have been some changes in the application and practical purposes of ship models, the joy of creating and collecting them still remains the same.

Model Ships, Pirate Ship Models, RC Boats, Uncategorized , , ,

Why Model Ships Make Perfect Gifts

March 10th, 2010

Model Ships Make Great Gifts!

Model Ships Make Great Gifts!



 

When we see a model ship that someone has put together, we no doubt wonder, "How on earth did he do that?" What’s even more exciting is when you tear open all that colorful wrapping paper on Christmas Day to find a miniaturized nautical treasure waiting for you underneath. But what makes model ships so appealing to give as gifts?

Ships in History

The historical significance of each ship and the incredible accuracy that goes into each model is certainly a huge factor. Giving a small piece of history to a loved one so that he or she may also enjoy its superb craftsmanship will spur further curiosity over why that particular vessel was so important.

Once the history of one ship is discovered it will lead him or her to read about other ships from the same or concurrent time periods. This may also spur an interest to later get other models in order to continue this educational experience.

Admiration of Skill

When seeing an assembled model ship, interest is enlightened when the admirer realizes that he or she would not have the patience to build it. So giving a model ship as a gift offers the admirer a chance to truly enjoy the effort that’s gone into its creation. Perhaps while marveling at each intricate detail he or she will be inspired to grasp that patience.

Others may not want to try assembling ships on their own, but they will be more inclined to see what else the builder has to offer. After peeling away the wrapping paper and the bow and staring at the treasure inside, they will likely ask "Where did you get this?" You can proudly tell them where you found that pirate ship and how impressed you also were with its craftsmanship.

Model Ships Bring Fond Memories

A common practice when giving a model ship as a gift is offering a bit of remembrance from a trip or other fond life experience. Especially with luxury cruises very popular right now, many of us have taken at least one journey on a big ship. Usually we come home with a model ship so that every time we see it, we think of our trip and how enjoyable it was.

Model ships are also popular gifts for those in the armed forces who once served or still serve on a particular vessel. These models are accepted and displayed as a grand form of pride from his or her efforts as a member or the military. Whatever station he or she may have served, looking over at that miniature ship time and time again will certainly make them smile.

So whether you give a model ship for a loved one to collect or enjoy, or if you want to just see the ships when you visit him or her later on, they will always make a fantastic gift. If anything, it’s relaxing to just sit and enjoy seeing the ships, and perhaps dream a little with it.

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Model Ship Buying Guide

March 2nd, 2010
How To Buy Model Ships

How To Buy Model Ships

 

Purchasing a model ship is a significant decision. If you’re not already a model builder or collector, it can be very difficult to determine the exact value of the model you’re looking for. With the infusion of the internet, there is also the added challenge of not being able to examine the model in person, or to compare models of different builders for details. A model might look good from afar, but when closely examined it could be a disaster.

When looking for a ship model, first ask yourself these questions:

  • How many pictures does the seller provide?
  • What is the quality of each picture?
  • Is the model historically accurate?
  • What components were used in building the model?
  • Does the seller have quality control and/or inspect all models prior to shipment?
  • How will the model be packaged for delivery?

A Picture is Not Always Worth 1000 Words

Since you cannot see the model in person, the next best thing you have is photos on the web. Depending on how large and/or complex the ship model is, you have to hope the seller will offer you as many angles as possible to reaffirm your decision.

At minimum you should have pictures of the bow, stern, port and starboard sides of the boat. If the ship has sails, a close up of the fabric and stitching are also helpful. If the stand has a plaque, that should also have a separate picture. If it has any specific historical details such as raised colors or deck contents, those should also been shown.

Each photo should also be an exceptional resolution and size for better inspection. Blurred or hastily Photoshopped photos also give the impression that the seller is just as careless with his or her product.

Accuracy is Key

This is where the digital age becomes the most useful. With the World Wide Web at your fingertips, it’s very easy for you do your homework and make sure that the seller has done his or her fair share as well. Do a side by side analysis of drawings, paintings, and historical photographs for the ship you’re looking for with the various photos shown by the seller. Are the painted colors correct? Does the ship have the right amount of cannons on each side? Does it have 3 turrets or 4?

How the model is made is also a huge factor in quality and pricing. If the model is made of high quality rosewood, it will certainly be a more prestigious sale than one made of cold cast resin or plastic.

Inspections & Shipping

The ultimate way to tell if the seller is offering you good product is if he or she inspects the product before shipping. Often you’ll find a link to a guarantee with multiple points of inspection offered before the ship is sent.

Also a good thing to look for is any info on how the boat is packaged for delivery. If the seller shows photos of how the boat is stored and protected, the better. Using a specific shipping company with excellent standards is also a plus.

If the model and the seller offering it meet all of these criteria, then you’ve got a better edge on determining if the model will be perfect for you or as a gift for someone else.

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Model Sailboats Reflect on History

February 9th, 2010

Model Sailboats - Americas Cup Contender Model

Model Sailboats - America's Cup Contender Model


 
Owning a model sailboat offers the boat lover an opportunity to reflect on their experience sailing the open waters. Sounds of the sea echo in their ears, as the imagination leads them to these special places and times.

Whether a sailor or simply an admirer, owning a handcrafted model sailboat is an elegant addition to any home, office, or study.

To the collector, a model sailboat tells a story. Replicas of famous crafts, from the American classics to the internationally famous schooners, often grace their mantles and curio cabinets. They are passionate about showcasing these treasures.

The detail that the model sailboat exhibits is amazing. Through the intricate stitching on the sails, to the glossy hand painted hulls, the fine craftsmanship the artisans put into their work is apparent.

Model sailboats come in many types, sizes and shapes. These masterpieces are found for sale online, and in some of the finer furniture stores. However, due to specific requests, numerous sailboats are made to order.

Crafted sailboats in a bottle

When eying the beauty of the model sailboat in a bottle, you will be reminded of bygone times. These delicately crafted vessels are presented in several types of bottles.

Depending on the sailboat you choose, it may be housed in a round bottle, a flat-bottomed bottle or dimpled bottles, designed to sit on a table or mantle. The bottles are corked, waxed, and lined with cotton fishing line, then topped off with a sailor’s knot.

To achieve the realistic effect these vessels exhibit, crafters use only quality materials. For every detail – from the mast to the sea – your model sailboat in a bottle is sure to be a prized possession.

Every piece will have a descriptive plaque engraved or otherwise affixed to the bottle. Many offer the history of the sailboat. This addition makes these wonders not only a stunning curio, but a source of education, and conversation.

Decorative model sailboats offer timeless classics at affordable prices

Owning a decorative model sailboat will put you in the seat of history with your hand on the sail. It is up to you where you take the vessel, and where it takes you. It is the discerning taste of the novice or collector that draws one to these water crafts.

The building of these sailboats requires a steady hand and a love for the craft. Decorative handcrafted model sailboats are not fashioned from prefabricated model kits. Craftsmen research each vessel’s history before embarking on its creation. Museums, photos, boat plans, and visits to the actual boats are a few techniques used in crafting a decorative model sailboat.

After careful review, model plans are drawn which mimic the original vessel. This is accomplished by the use of special computer software.

Following the plan creation, the tedious process of shaping the sailboat begins. The wood for the bulkhead and deck are hand formed. While some machinery is used to move along production, the majority of the work is done by hand.

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Top 10 Most Famous Ships in History

February 6th, 2010

Famous Ships - Titanic Model

The Most Famous Ship - The Titanic


 

There are many ships with a claim to fame due to how they were build while others are due to some significant historical event(s) that they were involved in. Whatever the reason, this select number of vessels has left a permanent imprint in our minds.

The Titanic

One of the most recognized navel disasters of the early 20th century; the RMS Titanic was quoted by The Shipbuilder Magazine as "practically unsinkable". Nearly 100 years later, the story of this great ship’s demise is still shrouded in controversy. Regardless, the Titanic has left an enduring legacy for many historians, treasure seekers, and enthusiasts alike.

The Enterprise

There have been many vessels with this recognizable name; some factual and some fictional. Regardless of history or myth, The Enterprise in its various personas has grown into a cultural phenomenon. Some of the most notable crafts include the USS Enterprise nuclear aircraft carrier and the Space Shuttle Enterprise currently on display at the Smithsonian’s Air & Space museum.

The Victory

The most famous ship of the Royal Navy, the HMS Victory is mostly remembered when Admiral Horatio Nelson commanded her between 1803 and 1805. She’s the oldest commissioned warship in the world and currently rests in Portsmouth.

The Cutty Sark

The world’s only surviving extreme clipper ship; the Cutty Sark is mostly remembered not as a sailing vessel but as one of many significant sites to see in the south-east London. Even after an accidental fire in 2007, the ship was restored through charity efforts and is one again on display for all to see.

The Mayflower

Originally designed as a trade cargo ship, the Mayflower is most known for its transportation of English Separatists across the Atlantic between 1620 and 1621. After reaching Cape Cod, the surviving Pilgrims stayed behind while the ship then returned to London.

The Britannic

A sister ship to the Titanic, the HMHS Britannic would start as a luxury ocean liner but then be commissioned as a hospital ship for the First World War. In 1916, she would be struck with a mine off the coast of Greece and quickly sink into the Mediterranean.

The Constitution

The USS Constitution is most recognized as one of the few navel vessels with a perfect battle record. Nicknamed "Old Ironsides", the ship was later dry-docked and converted into a museum in Boston, Massachusetts as a symbol of longevity and American might.

The Arizona

The USS Arizona is one of the US navel ships which was subsequently attacked and sank during the Japanese attack in Pearl Harbor December 7, 1941. Its remains are still in Pearl Harbor as a memorial to that historical day and to those who lose their lives.

The Niña, Pinta & Santa Maria

The Niña, Pinta, and Santa Maria will always be remembered as the trio of ships that carried Christopher Columbus and crews across the Atlantic. Despite the loss of the Santa Maria in Haiti, the other two ships was used on many of Columbus’ later voyages as well.

The Bounty

Romanticized by Hollywood, the mutiny upon the HMS Bounty in 1789 is most well known for its aftermath of its crew through various stages of trials, tribulations, and betrayal. Lt. Bligh was eventually acquitted and descendants of the mutineers still live on Pitcairn Island to this day.

Model Ships, Top Selling Ship Models , , ,

Fully Assembled Museum Quality Tall Ships For Sale

January 31st, 2010

Tall Ships - Cutty Sark Model

Tall Ships - Cutty Sark Model


 

If you asked four out of five people they’d tell you that what they understood about tall ships was what they’d seen on a movie screen, but in reality these boats are anything but a relic from the past. The economic bonuses for the people and places who understand the value of these tall ships are still helping communities around the world today and the interest in these boats remains unabated judging by the number of people and places that take an active interest.

If you don’t think that these vessels are still vibrant, all you need to do is ask the people of Nova Scotia, Canada. The recent 2009 Tall Ships event that was carried out there injected a whopping $32 million into the local economy and drew close to 100,000 visitors. More than 40 ships and thousands of sailors were at the event last summer.

Sailing Tall Ships To The Bank

If you’ve got the money and you’re so inclined a stay the Winter Olympics can be even more interesting than you first thought since one of the Russian tall ships, the Kruzenshtern, will visit Vancouver during the Olympics and possibly even offer interested visitors a ride. The ship is scheduled to arrive in Vancouver on Feb 10 and there will be 120 cadets aboard who will be learning the expertise needed for sailing tall ships.

There are those who think that tall ships are the stuff of Europe only and that when you think about American history, you need to only concern yourself with the canoe. However, that’s not the case at all as these tall ships and their history have a place in the American story as well

Tall Ships And American History

Across the United States there are several maritime museums that cater partially to the past of these tall ships and you can make plans to go to places like the Maine Maritime Museum that includes some realistic models of the tall ships from a bygone era. There are many other museums that cater to this important part of American history and the San Diego Maritime Museum has information on sailing these interesting boats there as well.

As you might expect, the West Cost has a special affinity with these boats in general with places like San Francisco being home to large fleet at the end of the 1800s. These tall ships helped to establish the California and Hawaii Sugar Company that brought raw sugar from Hawaii to the refineries that were located on the coast. In 1898 one the Schooners embarked on the journey with a 19-year-old captain on board. William Olson was to become the youngest sea Captain on the Pacific.

Tall ships have seen the history of the world and of the American continent and played a role in both. These are the boats that live on today and still represent a vibrant part of the lives of the people interested in the sea.

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Model Ships for Sale

January 23rd, 2010

Model Ships for Sale - HMS Victory Model

Model Ships for Sale - HMS Victory Model


 

Model ship collecting is about as classic a hobby as you can get. Prior to the industrial revolution, model ships were bought and sold mostly among the wealthy population. This was because of the uniquely skilled craftsmanship put into the each model’s design. However, in this day and age model ships sell to anyone and everyone. Some collectors prefer building models from scratch, while others simply want to find whole model ships for sale. If you are just starting out in your hobby and looking to find some model ships to start off your collection, there are loads of great sites that offer model ships for affordable prices.

Model Ships for Sale Online

One such site for the model ship enthusiast is handcraftedmodelships.com. Here you can find a large variety of model ships for sale. Ship sizes conveniently range from 14″ and under to 50″ and over. While ship pricing ranges from the affordable $50 and under to the more diehard $500 and over.

For the collector looking for certain themes, different styles of model ships are also sold at handcraftedmodelships.com. For instance, civil war ships, pirate ships, and WWII ships are among the site’s model ships for sale. Also, ship decorations such as telescopes, ship wheels, and compasses are available for the model ship collector looking to enhance current models they own.

Mode ship categories include: tall ships, speed boats, cruise ships, yachts and special edition models. Display cases for your most prized model ships are also available. Each display case is made from pine, and is fashionably styled to store your model ship in luxury. Most newcomers to model ship buying probably won’t be interested in spending an extra $150 on just a case; but the accomplished and prideful model ship owners will scoff at the thought of dust gathering on their ships.

Another great way to find model ships for sale is eBay.com. Newcomers to model ship collecting may find the prices on eBay very affordable, while the quality of the ship may not be that great. However, distinguished model ship collectors looking to spend a bit of money will find many great and/or rare model ships for sale. However, eBay can either be your friend or your enemy. If you don’t know what you are doing, you may spend too much on a model ship not worth a whole lot. But when looking for rarities, eBay will help you find those model ships that other sites don’t sell.

So, whether you are new to model ship collecting or are a seasoned vet, there are many online ways to find the perfect model ships.

Model Ships , ,

Wooden vs Plastic Sailboat Models

January 13th, 2010

Model Ship - Enterprise Model

Model Ship - Enterprise Model


 

The subculture of model ship making dates all the way back to the ancient Egyptians who often placed small replicas of ships inside tombs in the belief that it could be used for the soul to travel across the Nile. The Greeks and Phoenicians were also known to create representations of ships for pottery and paintings. A modern boost in ship modeling arrived in the 1930’s when the designs of ship builder, E. Armitage McCann were published in Popular Science Magazine.

So it’s no surprise that at the dawn of the 21st century, model ship making is still a challenging and rewarding hobby. Some choose to do it due to a fascination with the sea itself. Others enjoy the creation process as the model slowly takes shape. Still others are amazed by the amount of detail that goes into many ship model designs.

Toy Boats or Much More?

To those who are new to the model ship culture, they may see these small boats as children’s toys. While some are made for the purpose of play, many other ships are meant to be placed on display. In fact, upon witnessing the precision that goes into many of these designs, you would not expect to see them floating sideways in a child’s bathtub.

Some models are seen in captain’s cabins to show pride in the craft he or she commands. Ship building companies keep miniatures of all their current designs on display in board rooms and offices. These scaled down versions are also often used to understand how ships in centuries past were built.

Plastic vs Wood Models

Since many nostalgic boat designs were made out of wood, a lot of early model ships were made the same vein. In many cases wood was one of the only materials available and easy for hands to manage. Many collectors and diehard enthusiasts even now stress the need for accuracy, so they will only work with wood, string, and in some cases even small metal parts for cannons and anchors.

After World War II, the innovation of plastic models started to become more popular due to supply and demand. Many of these models were made from master designs of wood, plaster, clay or other materials. These designs are then used to create plaster or epoxy molds for mass production.

Some of these assembly line-styled model ships come preassembled so they can be displayed directly out of the box. Others arrive in various pieces in order for you to enjoy the achievement of making the model. In either case, the accomplishment of these kits has made model ship collecting more accessible to the general public.

Are Model Ships For You?

The hobby of model ships does require patience to go along with a passion for the seafaring crafts they represent. What’s most important is that the experience can be fulfilling and even provide you with a wonderful story about the boat and even some information about the period in history it came from.

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How To Buy a Ship Model

January 7th, 2010

Model Ship - Titanic Model

Model Ship - Titanic Model


 

One of the most popular pastimes all over the world is building ship models. A ship model is a small-scale reproduction of a ship. People may enjoy building them because they enjoy nautical history, are interested in the engineering of ships, or simply because they think ships are cool. Ship models range in size from miniatures to large models that are actually manned by people.

People have been building ship models since ancient times. Some of these models have survived to the modern era, which gives historians a firsthand look at the ships and the culture surrounding them in the olden days. Ship models were often used in ancient times as burial votives, home décor, or as toys for children.

Times haven’t changed all that much, as ship models today are often used for the same purpose (although not so much as burial votives these days). A ship model displayed in a den is still an impressive sight, and modern children still love to play with toy boats. Model shipbuilding is a timeless hobby that will most likely stay around until there’s no water left in which to float the finished products.

Types of Ship Models

A ship model can range in difficulty from simple enough for a child to complete alone to complicated enough to take weeks for a shipbuilding professional to finish. Model kits are available for many different types of ships, from pirate vessels to modern warships, in materials from wood to plastic. They serve a variety of purposes from decoration to entertainment to research.

Some enjoy the challenge of building an exact replica of a famous ship in perfect detail. Others ratchet up the challenge factor by attempting to build the ship inside a bottle. Ships in bottles are fascinating to look at, but not much fun to play with.

Those who prefer a high-tech thrill could invest in a radio-controlled ship model. An RC ship model may come preassembled, but it’s still a challenge. The challenge lies in navigating it, not in building it, but it’s a challenge nonetheless.

And for those who think that bigger is better, one can even build a ship model that’s large enough to hold people in it. Generally speaking, these manned models are used for research, engineering, or training, but it’s not improbable that some enthusiasts build manned models for recreational purposes.

Where to Purchase a Ship Model

Ship model kits are available for purchase in a variety of avenues. A ship model from a local toyshop or hobby store could make a great last-minute birthday or holiday gift. Online retailers offer every possible model kit in existence. There are even specialty shops dedicated solely to this pastime.

Some may dismiss model shipbuilding as nothing more than silly toys or a leisure hobby, but it is more than that to those who love it. Ship models not only help to preserve history, they have a long history of their own that’s worth preserving. As long as there are model enthusiasts to carry on the tradition, it will live on.

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