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In The Bleak Mid-Winter

I think it true to say that we’re all quite fed-up with “Covid”, it doesn’t matter what …….. it’s been affecting just about every aspect of our lives, young and old alike! Having a hobby has been a real help for many of us, a break from talking to ourselves, the boring TV and anyone else who will listen ( pity our significant others). It’s been a relief from all that unwanted exercise ……..clearing snow, hunting for elusive Christmas candy bars, and over indulging at suppertime! Fortunately it seems that we have put our talents to good use; if, as and when we could get the necessary supplies the dockyards have been kept busy. Well done, guys!

Bob has completed another masterful job, using a Mini-Craft kit he now has the problem of what to do with a really great model of the Titanic (1: 350 scale). I fear the Miss’s may have already or soon will express some gentle comments about space requirements ……… a problem common to most of us. There are of course 5 possible solutions to the dilemma (in ascending cost):

Ignore the problem (and prepare for disaster),

Stop making models (and go “squirly”),

Build smaller models (not so easy when we get older),

Build fewer and larger and more complex models (that take much longer to do),

Build or buy more space (if that becomes available, prepare for someone else to claim a higher priority for it).

So, of course we’re damned if we do and damned if we don’t, so just keep the dockyards humming!!!! By the way, I’m sure this is the Titanic and not the Olympic (the name is on the box), and for those of you not familiar with the conspiracy theory, some folks have suggested that the two ships were switched as part of an insurance fraud that went wrong ……. and it was the sister ship and not the Titanic that sank … way! Now let's have a look at Bob's work, first there's a rats nest of lines, guy wires and an unbelievable number of portholes and rivets ........ all looking positively authentic.

I hope you'll agree, the ship looks really great (and there's even a boat drill getting underway)!

Of course members have been commenting about progress amongst each other and Jeremy has been putting his time to good use. His model of the USN Crockett (Ashville Class) paid a visit to the bathtub recently and, at 51 inches LOA, there wasn’t any room for him as well. However, as he said there was a ton of ballast in it and it neither sank nor rolled over ………… so the first trial went well. At that stage, the electronics were complete including the rotation mechanism for the forward gun turret. Lots of “fiddly work" remains including the rear gun turret, deck hardware, the fire director, and lights. Jeremy reports that he is scratch building several of these parts and adding a few more bits and pieces to make the vessel more authentically battle ready.

Top left is the fire director, centre is the AAC Bofors gun, right are the life rings and the two .50 Calibre machine guns. Centre left is the 3 inch/50, centre are the ladders, and right is the intake screen for the turbine engines (only the guns are not scratch-built).

Will it be ready for the first Pond Day this year …….. here’s hoping so (maybe a different colour too)!

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