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  • Writer's pictureScale Model Spot

Galliot from Psara 5: Choice of Woods

Updated: Dec 3, 2020

I decided to go with the solid hull method for this build. So, instead of creating an internal skeleton for the hull, I will build a solid on which all the planking and decking will be placed. This method ensures stability and uniformity of the lines, giving a smooth hull without bumps and irregularities. In a speculative build such as this one, lacking reliable plans, it will allow for better control of the hull shape before the planking begins. I will then be able to correct any mistakes or irregularities by sanding or adding wood without affecting the final appearance of the model, since the mold will be entirely covered by the planking. This method is often used in museum models, when the internal structure is not visible, since it combines a smooth and exact recreation of the ship’s lines with a solid, strong construction.

As far as wood types are concerned I decided to go with the following:

  • Linden (basswood) for the solid hull (it will not be visible on the finished model). Linden is a hard and dense wood that holds its shape very well and is ideal for woodcarving.

  • Cherry and maple for the planking of the hull and the decks. These are also hardwoods with good behavior and smooth texture.

  • Black walnut for the keel, bulwark rails, benches and deck details.

  • Birch for masts and yards. Birch wood is very durable and, if properly dried, it will retain its shape in time. It is often used in modelling for thin, elongated structures, such as mast and oars.

All woods mentioned above are hardwoods from deciduous trees or fruit trees. They are solid, bend well, are resilient in time and can hold details very well.

I began the construction by building the solid hull and correcting any irregularities and mistakes according to the corrected plans. I then used walnut to cut the shapes for the keel.

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