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Monstrosity! 1/72 Seawolf

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Monstrosity! 1/72 Seawolf

Postby ManOwaR » Sat May 16, 2009 11:32 pm

Well, Hello again everyone!
The time has come to kick off my new mega project; the SSN 21 USS Seawolf – built in 1/72. This is exciting for me as I have worked on nothing save the Permit class boats for long last while. Lots of lessons have been learned, lots of knowledge and new skills have been acquired from that last build. It will be good to have a new modeling subject!

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Why did chose the Seawolf for my next build? A couple of reasons I guess. To my knowledge no one has built a 1/72 Seawolf, which means it has to be made. Second, I love the Permit boats with their sleek lines and all that, but the Seawolf is in my opinion the unrivaled king of the sea when it comes to deep water dominance. Finally, it will have presence. This will be big, as it will come in at over 5’ long and almost 7” wide there will be no missing this boat when surfaced on the local pond, it will have a wide stature that can only be recognized as of itself, the Seawolf!

I view those boats to be more in the spirit of an underwater battleship than simply an attack submarine. They were made to dominate the front line of battle to deal with the enemy’s greatest seafaring threats and multiple targets at a time. The Seawolf is not only fast, it is extremely quiet with its pump jet propulsor. The threats in which the Seawolf were designed to counter disappeared after the cold war, and the American navy opted to build a cheaper , and in my opinion as well as a few others’, a less capable submarine in combat roles in the form of the Virginia class.

The plan here is to start relatively slow on this build. I will be building the odd thing here and there for it as finishing the last phases of mould building for the Jack and Permit kits allows. Between those kits subsequent production for customers and summer holidays, I predict going full steam on the Seawolf sometime in August. I plan on spending a fraction of the time that I did with the Permits as hopefully I’ll have to do everything only twice compared to 4 or 5 times over…LOL! The Permits ate up most of the high learning curve time required to complete such an endeavor. I will base this build loosely upon the Deep Sea Design prints, but they are old and new revelations have been discovered on this behemoth and what makes it tick. This will be good; there are a few changes and some rather large surprises as far as detailing this monster.
The scope of work:

• Build hull plug mould from white pine
• Appendage and most other masters to be made from white pine
• Build sail and hull moulds using epoxy FRP
• All other moulds to made from RTV rubber
• Build an FRP insert for Jimmy Carter Conversion
• Other than these preceding points, it’s all up in the air. I’m not going to kid myself that plans will change or better ideas will come along. We’ll play the wind, just like in golf

There she is in all her glory, white pine boards lying on garage floor ready to worked and shaped into a model of one of the most powerful weapons ever made at the hands of mankind. Hopefully you all will enjoy following along in its progress as I will in building it

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Regards,
Joel
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Postby wlambing » Sun May 17, 2009 9:42 am

Joel,

It is my sincerest hope that you will not make the mistake of others by modeling the ship "as-built". By that I mean before being coated with the special hull treatment. Several folks have put out Seawolf models with all the pre-coating hull fixtures modeled as stand-offs to the hull itself, as well as the sail (i.e., sonar window as a raised projection). After receiving the coating, these ships are all smooth and fair. There are some areas topside where the coating edges are beveled around fittings and the main deck walking areas, similar to the British Trafalgars and Upholders. I very much look forward to your progress on this endeavor.
Good research will pay off!

Take care,

Bill
"If you ignore the problem long enough, it will go away. Even flooding stops eventually!"
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Postby ManOwaR » Sun May 17, 2009 10:25 am

Bill you bet,
I'll be building the boat to it's current duty state, so most of the details will be flush like you said. I'm going to get this as scale as humanly possible. As always, if you or anybody see that I'm doing something wrong, by all means be sure to let me know!

Thanks,
Joel
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Postby Kerry Addington » Mon May 18, 2009 8:03 am

This would bring up the question of just how thick is the anechoic coating on average? Would the desire be to add this dimension to the 'as built' numbers, increasing the hull circumference and sail dimensions?
Plus, the whole matter of Jimmy Carter. See attached 'rollout' shot of SSN-23 with deep relief around the torpedo doors, compared to the 'smoother' relief on the attached shot of SSN-22 being refloated after a 2004 refit. Hey, we're just getting started here!
-Kerry
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Postby aquadeep » Mon May 18, 2009 9:54 am

Hi do you have any ideas on the type of ballast system ,or propultion and will you have retractable bow plains,on my Alfa that is almost 9 inches wide and 5ft long it has lateraly retracting bow plains operated by hydraulicks,very cool.

I would sure love to go to sea with your Sea Wolf against my Alfa! Wow that would be fun. :D

Not to mention impressive.

You build beutyfull subs I know this one will make us proud!
I always crissen mine, and my wife she does the honors like it should be.


Dave Amur Sub Yard


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Postby ManOwaR » Mon May 18, 2009 11:38 am

Kerry Addington wrote:This would bring up the question of just how thick is the anechoic coating on average? Would the desire be to add this dimension to the 'as built' numbers, increasing the hull circumference and sail dimensions?
Plus, the whole matter of Jimmy Carter. See attached 'rollout' shot of SSN-23 with deep relief around the torpedo doors, compared to the 'smoother' relief on the attached shot of SSN-22 being refloated after a 2004 refit. Hey, we're just getting started here!
-Kerry


Hi Kerry,
Good questions, according to the Deep Sea Design plans the coating comes in at 1" on the sail, whether that aplies to the hull or not is the question, perhaps some of the boys in the know here could fill us in?

The torp doors on the Connecticut pic definately are more subtle It looks like they put less of a bevel (if any at all) on the hull coating surrounding them and then built up the doors themselves. This brings up a question then; In what manner do these doors open? If they rotate then the extra coating would interfere? I have been working on doors for the Permit and it would be nice to do for this boat as well.


aquadeep wrote:Hi do you have any ideas on the type of ballast system ,or propultion and will you have retractable bow plains,on my Alfa that is almost 9 inches wide and 5ft long it has lateraly retracting bow plains operated by hydraulicks,very cool.

I would sure love to go to sea with your Sea Wolf against my Alfa! Wow that would be fun.

Not to mention impressive.

You build beutyfull subs I know this one will make us proud!
I always crissen mine, and my wife she does the honors like it should be.
[/img][/quote]

Dave,
Ballast system for now will be user's choise. I would be capable to build a system myself, but to be honest, I would rather put my time into the hulls and modelling. Maybe when I quit my dayjob!

Because I like things to be as functional as possible on my stuff, I am going to attempt retractable dive planes and is successful, include it with the kit. I think I have a fairly good idea of how to do this, it will be a matter of making it easily reproducable for me, and then easy to install and maintain for the end user. Maybe scopes too, at least this thing will have a sail large enough to get some stuff into.

Thanks very much for the kind words, Dave! Oh yes, how does does your wife christen the boats, by smashing champagne bottles on them? LOL!

Regards,
Joel
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Postby Kerry Addington » Mon May 18, 2009 11:59 am

Here are some pictures to ponder of SSN-22.
That coating/relief on the sail looks a bit more than one inch, and the hull relief in the other shot is who knows how thick?
Hopefully those in the know will chime in on this and other points of interest!
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Postby Boss subfixer » Mon May 18, 2009 2:26 pm

Kerry Addington wrote:Plus, the whole matter of Jimmy Carter. See attached 'rollout' shot of SSN-23 with deep relief around the torpedo doors, compared to the 'smoother' relief on the attached shot of SSN-22 being refloated after a 2004 refit. Hey, we're just getting started here!
-Kerry
Image

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Kerry,
I believe what your seeing is a bit of an optical illusion. The Carter is in the sun, therefore you can plainly see the transition areas from the hull covering to the torpedo tube shutter doors, the Connecticut shot is on the shady side but if you look real close at the draft marks for 23 (forward) and 24 (aft) feet then you can see that they tend to bend towards the hull.
The Carter rolled out pretty much with all the hull treatment done because of the set back in time for adding the extra length.
Don Evans
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Postby Kerry Addington » Mon May 18, 2009 2:44 pm

As always,the Boss is spot-on !
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Postby aquadeep » Mon May 18, 2009 4:02 pm

My wife and I and sometime freinds go to the pond and she makes a picknick ,at the end the sub is at the edge of the pond.

She says its time,and we all gather and with a vial of liquor somtimes shampaighne she says those famouse words I crissen the so on and so on and then pours a small amount onto the bow and I launch her.

just something fun we do. :D

Yes thats my way also to build the internals as much as possible from ones own desighne and make it easily servicable,to where any one can fix it.
The exterior as well deserves a tremenduse amount of attention to detail just depends how far one wan'ts to go.

Readily available parts are a must in kit production and marketing. :D
"I like submarine comanders ,they don't have time for bull!!" and
"Don't tell me it can't be done!"

President Roosevelt

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Postby PaulC » Mon May 18, 2009 5:18 pm

Is that a float or something aft of the rudder in that one shot? For a second I thought it was the pumpjet housing above the waterline -- but no. :(
Warm regards,

Paul Crozier
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Postby wlambing » Mon May 18, 2009 5:29 pm

Paul- That's a tarp with a bubble in it! It's covering the vegematic.
Joel- The tube shutters roll inward by rotating up. Same as all 594's and up.

Hull coating is about 2 inches thick. As Don points out, the light and angles we're seeing the beveled edges on are a bit illusory. (my big word for today, I can take my nap now!)

I believe Peanutfish looks different as she was the first to receive MIP coating during construction. The others got theirs during Post Shakedown availability.

Take care,
Bill
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Postby PaulC » Tue May 19, 2009 8:01 am

Bill,

Thanks for the clarification. I see it now. :D

Joel, I'm sure it will be an outstanding boat. Can't wait to watch the progress.
Last edited by PaulC on Tue May 19, 2009 1:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Warm regards,

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Postby Kerry Addington » Tue May 19, 2009 8:16 am

I'm working on a 1/96 version of SSN-22 right now and opted not to show the coating relief changes but it would be a great feature in the larger 1/72 scale. Thanks now and going forward to all who share their knowledge about these three boats, because Seawolf modelers face unique frustrations. Plenty of good archive exists of every prior class, and a schoolchild can easily find stills and video of almost every square inch of a Virgina, but comparable Seawolf public media is non-existent. I presume the origin in a Cold War timeframe has something to do with it, but can anyone shed light as to why images of the Seawolf class are so rare?
For instance, when the attached shot was released in Feb 07, it was followed by multiple tighter views of Virginia shot from the pier, but Zero-Zip-Nada of USS Connecticut right next door.

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Postby hakkikt » Tue May 19, 2009 12:45 pm

A question about the anechoic coating:

As I understand it, the first photos of Seawolf were done during shakedown, when the anechoic rubber tiles had not yet been attached. This is why the sonar piece on the sail stands out - it is supposed to be flush with the rubber tiles, which had however not yet been put on.

I see in one of the above photos that the torpedo tube doors and bow diveplanes of SSN-22 are flush with the hull surrounding them (a great photo btw!).

Since I am building a Trumpeter Seawolf, which represents the shakedown status, and I am going to model it in that status, here is the question:
Did the ends of the diveplanes and the torpedo tube doors stand out like the sonar piece - given that the anechoic tiling was not present on the hull, too?
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