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Balao/Gato

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Balao/Gato

Postby Super18 » Sat Dec 24, 2011 10:23 am

Hello,
Let me start by saying, what follows is the main reason my husband and I joined the site as full members.
He purchased a 1/32nd scale 32nd Parallel Gato/Balao sub! He purchased everything for it. This was some 20 years ago?
In the beginning all started well. using the supplied wood and plans the build commenced. Slowly things began to take shape, the deck and the conn started to look like pretty good. The "Formers" were installed in the hull and prop shaft/stuffing boxes as well. Then a move into a new home and a job change meant that the sub never made it's way out of it's new home in the extra room of the new house. So there she sits! in her cradle waiting.
Fast forward 11 years... We now want to finish her! Times have changed, technology is better. And most important this forum!
Help and information was scarce back when the build began. Magazines were about the only thing out there. Skip Assay's model was a good read for information.
So here we are, ready to pull her out of storage and gather up all the pieces.
The game plan is to get the holidays out of the way. and to get a R/C air plane off the build table so we have room to to take a look at what needs to be done. changed, fixed or replaced.
So bear with us...we will have a lot of questions.
Here's the Conn...That's the Revell 1/72nd scale scale conning tower on top!
Image

Sharon
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby raalst » Sat Dec 24, 2011 12:29 pm

My, that IS a biggie.

what is the length of the boat when finished ?
Regards,

Ronald van Aalst

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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby Super18 » Sat Dec 24, 2011 2:01 pm

raalst wrote:My, that IS a biggie.

what is the length of the boat when finished ?

Ron,
They claimed in the ad...10 feet!
9' 7" on the hull is what I get.

Sharon
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby sam reichart » Sat Dec 24, 2011 2:55 pm

First off, kudos to you for joining with your husband. That's very cool. 8)

Gene Berger used to run his 32nd P at regatta's and here in Va at Lake Trashmore. That Gato sub is impressive as hell when underway, just on sheer size alone. Gene is a craftsman, and his model had incredible detail, working torpedoes, dive alarm; the works. It took two to get it into the water.

I'm looking forward to seeing you complete your model. Good luck!
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby Super18 » Sat Dec 24, 2011 6:27 pm

sam reichart wrote:First off, kudos to you for joining with your husband. That's very cool. 8)

Gene Berger used to run his 32nd P at regatta's and here in Va at Lake Trashmore. That Gato sub is impressive as hell when underway, just on sheer size alone. Gene is a craftsman, and his model had incredible detail, working torpedoes, dive alarm; the works. It took two to get it into the water.

I'm looking forward to seeing you complete your model. Good luck!


Sam...He came very, very close to selling her this past summer. He has thinned his model collection down to almost nothing, tough times make people do things.
But the sub is something I really didn't want to see him let go...So she got a reprieve from the cutting torches.
My hand in this will be more of yardmaster?...Finance officer and such... :mrgreen:
He'll do 99% of the building and such, I'll just be his second pair of hands and photographer.


Sharon
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby JWLaRue » Sat Dec 24, 2011 7:20 pm

Sharon,

Welcome to both you and your husband. You have a great hull there...and there aren't that many left out there. As Sam noted this is one impressive boar when sailing on or below the surface. Judging by the workmanship of the conning tower, I think we can expect to see more excellent wok as things progress.

Have you worked out how you will implement the ballast system? If you haven't, may I suggest that you get in contact with one of our premiere fleet boat builders/sailers? Jim Butt has been running a 1/48th scale Balao for a long time. He has a CO2-based ballast system that has been very cleanly designed and implemented. For a boat as large as the 32nd Parallel hull, going the same route could be a great choice as you will have a large ballast volume to shift when diving/surfacing. Jim is often on the forums here...with a forum name of "subdude".

May I also ask that you consider documenting the build and writing it up as an article for the SubCommittee Report? I know folks will want to see more about this build. If you're interested, please feel free to contact me and I can provide the easy specifics as to what we look for in article submissions.

-once again, welcome to the SubCommittee,

Jeff (managing editor, the SubCommittee Report)
Rohr 1.....Los!
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby Super18 » Sat Dec 24, 2011 7:46 pm

Jeff...........Slow down........ :mrgreen:

I got stuff to do for Santa's arrival tonight and your gonna make me grab my husband off the roof (Don't ask!) to help me the hull out a start taking pic's!

All kidding aside...Jeff these are just a few of the the things we have been trying to figure out. It will not be a Dynamic boat! That much we know for sure.
When you see the "Dry Compartment" you will see why we have so many things to figure out. Just remember she was being built as per the plans for her back then, It ain't pretty in there.
As far documenting the build...PhotoBucket has a lot room for pic's. Writing for the "SubCommittee Report"...well, I'm not sure our talents are up to that. But you can if like Jeff, use whatever we do to get her sea worthy as long as the ideas of others that are used be mentioned.

But for now...I have to run...Oh heavens...here we go again!...Honey...they'll think it's the airport again with all those lights on the roof! :roll:

Merry Christmas guy's.


Sharon
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby JWLaRue » Sat Dec 24, 2011 8:25 pm

We're here to help! There's no implied 'rush' here. Take things at a speed that you are comfortable with. Posting progress here on the SC forum is a great way to document what you are doing and can serve as the basis for an article if you wish to also do that.

I think you'll find folks in agreement that you should consider, shall we say, alternative internal arrangements..both because of the size of the boat and also because the technology has advanced quite a bit since Simon first started selling that kit.

Go get your other half off the roof and enjoy Xmas!

-Jeff
Rohr 1.....Los!
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby salmon » Sat Dec 24, 2011 9:30 pm

Sharon,
Welcome and what a thrill it is for me to see your sub. I have admired the 32nd Parallel Gato since it was first released. All the years that have past and I am now building/completing my first sub. Please provide pictures!
The work that you have shown is wonderful and I do look forward to see what you will do with her.
Peace,
Tom

p.s. Merry Christmas!
If you can cut, drill, saw, hit things and swear a lot, you're well on the way to building a working model sub.
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby Super18 » Sat Dec 24, 2011 11:35 pm

Shhhhh.....
Hubby grab the plans I grab the camera. Have to make sure it works for tomorrow!
Okay nothin spectacular, just some to give you an idea of how bad it is going to be!


Image
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Hi-Tech stuff...I know!
4 Pittmans on belt drive...Arrrgh! Plans show a "Pump Boat" I think I said that right?
We gotta wonder, If Dave could make up an RCABS? That would be nice. Motors have come a long way, as well as gear boxes.

Jeff...He's down safe and sound!...But we had to call Sky Harbor airport...AGAIN...The roof resembles an IFR landing light system!...Again!
There is a lot to re-think for sure. It must be a "Static Diver" for sure. The "Pressure Hull" will need some (Re; A lot!) redoing. Just not all fired up about all that wood in there. All of the False deck supports are wood. We are thinking of using G-10 to re-do alot of the wood?

Hang in there Tom..it may be a long bumpy ride!

Any ways for sure I've got to get going...It's quite and the kids are sleeping, we have a few more things to get done for Santa...

Sharon
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby JWLaRue » Sat Dec 24, 2011 11:52 pm

Super18 wrote:Jeff...He's down safe and sound!...But we had to call Sky Harbor airport...AGAIN...The roof resembles an IFR landing light system!...Again!

Ahh! I get it......it's your secret way of flagging down Santa! :mrgreen:

I agree that getting the wood out of there will be a desirable thing to do. To quote the movie The Graduate: "I just want to say one word to you. Just one word. Plastics."

Also, the generally accepted building wisdom is to not use two ballast tanks...but to instead use a single one. Makes it much easier to control trim.

Okay, Santa is almost here (east coast)....time to go!

-Jeff
Rohr 1.....Los!
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby Feet Wet » Sun Dec 25, 2011 5:13 pm

Sharon,
Hats off to the both of you for hanging in there with this project.
With the size of your beast( it is one!) you might consider a compressed air ballast system. The type I have in mind uses a scuba pony bottle(11 cu ft). besides ballast it allows for deploying scopes and masts and other neat stuff.
Only draw back is that one needs to be a certified diver to get the bottle filled. If you are not one, then I'm sure you must be able to find someone to have it filled for you.
Johann Saurer uses this system in his boats and he always impresses all who see it.
Cheers
Jonathan
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby Sub culture » Tue Dec 27, 2011 6:24 am

You could look at diaphragm pumps to evacuate a main vented tank.

These pumps by Sparkfun are good value, and move a lot of air at moderate pressure. For a large boat like the Gato , you may want to use a pair running in parallel-

Image

http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10398

Other things worth looking at are rotary compressors used for car hooters/horns, which move serious amounts of air, and centrifugal water pumps by companies like Whale and Reich.

A small trim tank, which could be based on a system of your choice could deal with the last 10-15% of buoyancy.
'Why are you staring at an empty pond?'

Want to dive your boat in crystal clear water? Then you had better Dive-in- http://www.diveintomodelsubmarines.co.uk
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby wlambing » Tue Dec 27, 2011 11:33 am

Sharon,

Mike's Sub Works (See SC Vendor page) has some pretty bullet-proof MBT systems available. Gas, Pumped, either way Mike can get you going. The water pump they use is wicked efficient. Check out their site, and don't be afraid to ask them questions! Good people!

Happy New Year!

Bill
"If you ignore the problem long enough, it will go away. Even flooding stops eventually!"
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Re: Balao/Gato

Postby wlambing » Tue Dec 27, 2011 11:50 am

OOh! OOh!

Another idea!!!!!! Sorry, only one bucket o' joe so far. Thoughts are still disconnected! You have taken on a big task in converting/updating your 32P boat, for sure. Something to do to help minimze struggle, heartache, and frustration- Contact the SC Local Chapter nearest you. Unless you're in the middle of East Moosehump, there's someone not too far away that can help you with their experience and expertise. We're all about helping each other enjoy the hobby and we take to making some very good friends along the way. Don't feel intimidated by any means, leap in and ask away!

In our own group, SubRon 4, we've gotten some very good results salvaging wrecks and coming out of it with really nice, well running boats. We're having a resurgence in our enthusiasm at present and are in the midst of a sort of building marathon, often trying new and different ideas (to us) and going forward. Some of our boats are into their 4 th or 5th "overhaul".

Whatever you do, try to keep it simple and fun!

Happy New Year (again!)

Bill
"If you ignore the problem long enough, it will go away. Even flooding stops eventually!"
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