For some reason wooden kits keep attracting me more and more. This one is the third I’m building, all from the same Russian company called Master Korabel (Мастер Корабел).
St Gabriel deck-boat
This was the main ship of the First Kamchatka Expedition lead by Danish explorer Vitus Bering for Russian Tsar Peter The Great in 1724-1730.
Just as with previous kits from this company I had no major issues with the model, wooden parts are awesome and very well engineered.
The only thing that is absolutely awful is threads supplied with the kit - those are simply not fit for purpose, with colors so off I can’t even think of using them in any model.
The other issue is the instructions. They start great, very detailed, tons of advice on how to build the thing. But further on they become less and less detailed/specific, and by the time I was finished rigging some parts of it were simply missing from the instructions. Luckily models comes with set of very detailed plans specifying all the rigging details, it’s just the written part that was lacking.
This kit is POB (planks on bulkheads), and it’s hull is designed to be extremely rigid and sturdy. Even by looking at the amount of bulkheads for stern and aft you can tell how thorough is the kit’s design.
Once bulkheads were installed I proceeded with the first layer of planking:
First planking layer is done, time for the second layer - beautiful colour this time.
And finally planking is done!
Then I glued in the deck and proceeded with detailing the hull, like making a rudder blade and all the hatches.
More details are added…
Until finally the ship is ready for the mast!
I decided to use the small boat I’ve made last year on the deck.
And made all the components for a mast, bowsprit and sailyards. It took quite some time as I had to make rounded things from square pre-cut pieces of wood.
Installed mast, bowsprit and main sail. Just making the ratlines took me 4 days.
And countless knots later the ship was finally finished!
I’m very proud with the result. It’s definitely the best model I’ve made so far, and being wooden it looks luxurious. It took me 4 months to build it, and I’ve learned a lot. Now I feel confident enough to start some big POB ship where planks are not laser cut.