Like most every kit I have worked on I did make a few mistakes, most of these I was able to correct on the fly, and one caused me a lot of extra work as I didn't realize that I had made a mistake until something didn't go together correctly. I think a couple of these I could have avoided if the instructions had been more detailed. They are well written and understandable but could use a lot more pictures, particularly of some of the more complex assemblies. I would call these a beta set of instructions since I think there are only three copies of this kit out there right now. I'll outline in the pictures where I had some difficulties because of the instructions as well as those spots where I managed to screw up all on my own. I'll pass corrections along to Matt at Laser Dream Works and I'm sure that corrections will be made pronto! So let's move to the build!
First off we have the parts, and instructions:
|The big cutout in the foam is where the masts, spars and other parts are placed for shipping|
|The front side. Looks good from here!|
|The backside, maybe a little deeper next time! In my case there was a whole strip moving up in an arc of pieces that the laser didn't punch all the way through.|
Now we start the building up the sides, first up is attaching the ribs. There is a notch engraved on each of the ribs, be sure this is flush with the deck. A misalignment here makes things much more difficult later on. I'm still not quite sure if I made a mistake at this point or not but at the end the starboard side was taller than the port side. My port side is correct, the starboard side is in error and you can tell because the top of the ribs is doesn't come up flush with the top of the last set of planks like the port side does. Although I was more worried at getting the bow finished correctly when I discovered this it is far more noticeable in the stern. In the long run my gaming buddies aren't going to notice though. But pay attention to what you are doing. If I was doing it again I would dry fit a section of planks together on both sides to make sure that the ribs where placed correctly. Its also very important to pay attention the parts are layed out in the proper order. Initially I punched them out of the sheet as I needed them and still managed to reverse two numbers in the build sequence. After that I punched out all the parts for each layer and layed them on the deck in the proper order so I wouldn't make that mistake again. Not only are the parts specifically created for the curve of the hull but they also layout the ore holes and the cannon ports and a mistake here can give you something that isn't right for either. There are a lot of pictures in this section, and a whole lot more that I left out. I just try to show the basic build concept and point out a couple of my mistakes.
|Nothing but ribs|
|First plank, port side.|
|The right way to lay out the parts. Numbering starts at the stern|
|The mistake I made here is why I started laying out the parts first. Can you see it?|
|A better shot of the out of sequence parts|
|Starting to look like something at this point!|
|The English ships draws American blood. This was one of the pieces that the laser didn't cut all the way and I wounded myself getting it out of the plywood sprue.|
|Clamps at attention.|
|Sigh, a mistake I missed. This section of the planks didn't set all the way down. I corrected this later with wood filler|