DETAIL & PAINT - Detailing The Boat
The ThorDesign Permit kit depicts USS Permit (SSN-594) in it's as-built condition circa 1962. However, the boats of this class served well into the 1990's and underwent many modifications. To properly detail your model, chose the specific boat and service period you wish to depict and research her thoroughly. For the purpose of this build, I chose to model USS Thresher (SSN-593) at the time of her loss on April 10, 1963.
Deck Fittings - Permit kits come with a selection of white metal parts to represent all the major deck fittings such as cleats, windlasses, etc. The hull is molded to represent these fittings in their retracted, at-sea positions. To depict them in their extended positions, drill a pilot hole for each fitting in the upper hull and file out the opening. Clean the flash from the white metal part and insert it in the proper hole. From the back side, apply epoxy to glue it in place. On this build, I chose to leave the in-port details off.
Stern Light - 1. Drill a hole in the upper rudder to accept the white metal part depicting the stern light beacon. I shaved off the resin housing molded into the top of the rudder for a more accurate appearance.
2. Apply a drop of CA to the bottom of the stern light part and insert it in the hole.
Periscopes & Masts - An assortment of resin and metal parts are included to depict the various periscopes and masts. Using the plans, drill and file out holes in the sail top for the masts you wish to install.
1. For this project only the single attack periscope was used. Cut a length of brass tube to represent the periscope barrel. Clean the white metal periscope top and glue it in one end with CA.
2. Next, drill a hole in the sail top. Insert the periscope. Friction will hold it in place during patrols. For other masts, insert a small threaded rod in the bottom of the mast. A washer and nut can then be applied from the inside of the sail to hold it in place.
MBT Vents - A tree of stainless steel photo-etched Main Ballast Tank vents are supplied with the kit.
1. Cut or twist a vent from its tree. File off any rough edges. Due to their tiny size, it is best to hold the part with a pair of needle nosed pliers. To increase grip and avoide scratching the part, wrap masking tape around each half of the pliers.
2. To countersink the part in the hull, I beveled the hole out with a small rat tail file. Masking tape was put around the area to prevent scratching the hull. The photoetched part was the placed in position and held in place with masking tape. The tape was sealed tightly around the mating surface and MBT opening.
From the back side, a drop of CA was placed in the joint between the hull and part. Capillary action draws it into the gap and secures it. Once dry, the tape can be removed and the outer seam between part and hull should be clean and glue free.
Early Permits had their stainless steel vents painted black, but at sea the paint would quickly wear off. As a result, they were left unpainted starting in the mid 1960's.
Zincs - Once the final paint job is finished, the zincs should be affixed to the stern. Their location is indicated on the plans and scribed in the hull. Place masking tape on either side of the scribe mark, apply CA to the underside of the metal part and lay it between the tape in the proper location. This prevents the glue from damaging the adjacent paint. As full scale zincs were unpainted, leave these parts in their raw, white metal condition.
Strainers - A 1/96 scale set of photoetched SSN vents and strainers was purchased from Jeff LaRue. The 637 MSW suction and discharge strainers were used in the Permit hull. They dressed out the big round holes very nicely. Installation was accomplished in the same manner as the MBT vents.