Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

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Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

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Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

Postby Mark » Thu Mar 29, 2012 11:51 pm

DeAgostini are offering a model of the San Felipe as an on-line part work which is available through their Model Space web site. http://www.model-space.co.uk/ships/our- ... an-felipe/
Instructions are made available as PDF files to download. There is no printed magazine. The San Filipe was a three decks gun ship built in 1690. She was heavily armed, with 104 cannons. The ship was very ornate, with distinctive galleries around the stern.

The model is 1/84 scale, and the finished model will be 63 x 32 x 83 cm. It is a traditional plank-on-frame model complete with detailed rigging and sails. The hull is double planked with hardwood outer planks and hardwood masts.

The ship, being an early design has a very elaborate hull with lots of detail. The masts, sails and rigging on the other hand, are more basic than later sailing ship. Therefore it comes as no surprise that the majority of the series is devoted to the construction of the hull. The sequence of assembly is well structured. The hull is competed first, followed by the masts, rigging and finally the sails.

Construction starts with the frame. The frame is constructed from ply wood that looks like it is cut with a water jet. The frame is very accurately cut and fits together well. There is no charred edge which is an advantage of water jet cutting over laser cutting. The bulwarks are added next. These are water jet cut thin ply. The quality looks very good and all the gun ports are cut out.

Image

Forward frame.

The bulwarks are water jet cut from think ply and feature pre-cut gun ports. The quality is very good.

Image

Ply bulwark.

The first layer of planking is a light wood, which looks nice and easy to work. The instructions describe a non-standard method of planking. It avoids the need to fit dropper planks, so may be easier for a beginner. However, you could get better results by using more traditional methods if you are confident. Beginners should keep to keep to the instructions.

The second layer planks are a red coloured hard wood. I'm not sure what wood it is, but it should give an attractive finish. The second layer planks cover the entire hull, from keel to bulwark.

Image

First and second layer planks.

The keel, stem and stern posts are made from a ply which is faced with a dark hardwood. The exposed edges are faced hardwood planks so the light inner plies are hidden. The wales (or rubbing strakes) are strips of a dark hard wood. They are a walnut colour.
The decks are planked with a light coloured wood.

Image

Deck planks and strakes.

The deck houses, etc. are made from a thin ply faced with a dark wood. These are water jet cut and look very good. They would probably benefit from having the edges painted with a dark wood stain to disguise them, but this is a minor detail.

Upper deck cannons are full cannon kits. The lower deck cannons are stub barrels fitted onto ply plates fitted behind the gun ports which is a common method of representing lower deck cannons. Cannons are made from two metal castings. One for the barrel and one for the carriage. They are pre-coloured and do not need any further finishing. They could, of course, be painted if desired. Other fittings are pre-coloured cast metal. The decorative emblems are cast white metal which can be bent to conform to the curve of the hull. These are very nice castings. There'd are also some photo etched brass details form some of the details. The ship's bell is turned brass. The quality of the fittings is very good.

Image

Cannons.

The masts are all made from dark hard wood dowels. There are well drawn plans which aid construction and help keep the instructions simple. The fighting tops are made from a combination of water jet cut ply and cast metal parts.

Image

Mast plan.


The rigging is made from several different thickness of dark brown and natural thread. There are rigging plans supplied, which are clear and easy to follow. The instructions rely on the plans and are brief but should be easy to follow. The sails pre-finished. They are neatly made and pressed. In common with most kits, the hems are a bit wide.

Image

Rigging plan.


This looks like it will be a very enjoyable build. The parts are all good quality and well manufactured. The finished San Felipe will make a very impressive display.

Thanks to DeAgostini for providing the review sample.
Cheers
Mark

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Re: Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

Postby SkyFire » Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:48 am

The 2nd layer hull planking looks like Sapele, (from Africa) and I've been wondering if the frames were actually cut with a CNC machine, never heard of water cutting.

A bit about the tree that Sapele comes from.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sapele
bItuHpa' BIHeghjaj - (Death before shame). ortaS bIr jablu'DI', reH QaQqu' nay' - Revenge is a dish best served cold. Qapla'!
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Re: Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

Postby chill » Fri Mar 30, 2012 8:00 am

Good looking model there and superb review.
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Re: Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

Postby Mark » Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:03 pm

SkyFire wrote:I've been wondering if the frames were actually cut with a CNC machine, never heard of water cutting.


Water jet cutting is where they use a very high speed fine jet of water to cut materials. It has that advantage that it can cut carbon fibre and other composite materials that can't be laser cut. I had some carbon fibre rocket fins water jet cut. The results were brilliant. The corners on the frames look too square to be CNC routed. No internal radius at all.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_jet_cutter
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Re: Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

Postby jim » Tue Apr 10, 2012 8:13 pm

I have been looking at this with a view but I prefer HMS Surprise, in a quandry
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Re: Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

Postby Mark » Tue Apr 10, 2012 8:34 pm

I haven't seen the HMS Surprise kit, so I don't know what the kit is like. The San Felipe is a bit different. Depends on whether you like the older ship's or not I guess.
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Re: Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

Postby jim » Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:12 am

Model space are doing it as a partwork or complete kit. It is a beast over 1.3 metres but looks very nice
http://www.model-space.co.uk/ships/our- ... -surprise/
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Re: Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

Postby williammcdougall » Mon Apr 23, 2012 5:42 pm

Hi,

I'm up to issue 19 of the Surprise haven't started building yet so can't comment on any construction issues but quality of materials is great.

I shied away from the San Felipe as I believe this kit is manufactured by the same company as the Eaglemoss Endeavor, I subscribed to this for about 10 issues but gave up as I found the quality of materials and their customer services to be very poor.

Just my opinion but hope it helps.
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Re: Review: San Felipe from DeAgostini Model-Space

Postby jim » Fri May 25, 2012 6:42 pm

I just ordered HMS Surprise woohoo
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