Okay, this isn't going to be a traditional build thread -- at least not in my mind. To me, a build thread is where virtually every step is documented and methods are discussed at length. Unfortunately, time (and camera) won't allow me to do that. Besides, if you want to know my methodology on this build see my 1/96 ThorDesign Permit thread.
Since I've gotten the kit from Joel Stadnick at HMK (my write-up of the kit contents is in the latest SCR) I've basically been tinkering with the parts, trimming flash, and fitting things together. Then last weekend I had a curious incident with the hull halves. They arrived perfectly matched. However, while sitting in the shop over the weeks a gap appeared on each end where the halves pulled away from each other. Had to be due to the humidity and temperature difference between Texas and Canada. Still, it surprised me because normally epoxy doesn't shrink that much and it usually isn't that localized.
At any rate, I taped the internal hull formers and WTC saddles in place, top and bottom, taped the hull halves together, and held them tight with rubber bands. The mated hull was placed outside on top of my BBQ grill in the heat of the day. I rotated it every few minutes, giving equal exposure to both sides, top and bottom. Then I took it inside and let it cool. When the tape and bands were removed the hull halves were perfect again.
Finally this weekend I got to put in some shop time. Having been down this road before I plowed through the z-cut, indexing lips, MBT floods, installing and truing up of the sail, and mounting the bearings for the stern appendages. The stern planes are not installed permanently quite yet -- I'm still fine tuning the fit. Overall it was a pretty eventful weekend.
Been also doing research on the class to decide which boat to build. Along the way I was fortunate enough to strike up a conversation with Captain David C. Minton, Capt. USN (ret) who commanded USS Guardfish (SSN-612). As a result I've settled on depicting his boat as it was in the summer of '72 when she famously trailed an Echo II off Viet Nam.
So far this has been a fun kit to work on. And though the pictures don't do it justice, it is going to be a nice, big boat.