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Sailing Ships from Plastic Kits (Hardback)

Maritime > Seaforth Publishing > Seaforth: Modelling

By Dr Kerry Jang
Seaforth Publishing
Pages: 128
Illustrations: 235 colour
ISBN: 9781399078603
Published: 30th August 2024

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Models of sailing ships, with their towering masts and billowing sails, have always held a special fascination for model makers because they capture all the romance of the sea, shipboard life, and a fighting spirit. However, many would-be modellers are discouraged by the inherent complexity of the subject – especially the masts and rigging, as well as the often-sumptuous decoration. Plastic kit manufacturers were quick to capitalise on this interest and produced kits that were advertised as easy and reasonably quick to assemble, featuring ready-made detail that is easily tackled by modellers of varying skills and ages with the promise of a good result. Plastic sailing ship kits are affordable, especially in comparison to wooden ship kits, and building a fleet of the most famous ships in history is easily achieved.

Despite their ease of assembly, plastic models of sailing ships, like the ships themselves, remain complicated to build. Manufacturers devised several simplifications of the most difficult aspects, such as moulding the lower, upper, and topmasts in one piece, offering preformed moulded plastic shrouds and ratlines, or sails in vacuum-formed plastic. However, modellers have long complained that these simplifications, the physical limitations of injected plastic mouldings, and the very medium of styrene plastic itself have resulted in often crudely detailed and unrealistic finished models.

This book is the remedy. It describes and demonstrates techniques unique to plastic sailing ship models that overcome these limitations, allowing the construction of authentic and personally satisfying models. Each modeller has a different expectation for their model. Some will want a simple build with some straightforward refinements, whereas others will want a more detailed build that takes advantage of the many new aftermarket items, and there are those who seek the most accurate and detailed replica possible. Sailing Ships from Plastic Kits aims to give every modeller – regardless of skill and experience – a range of fundamental and advanced techniques to choose from when transforming a plastic kit into an authentic sailing ship model.

Heavily illustrated in colour throughout, this book is an ideal addition to the purchase of any plastic ship kit.

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About Dr Kerry Jang

KERRY JANG teaches at a Canadian university and is the author of numerous academic books and papers, but in his spare time he has developed his ship modelling skills to professional standards. For Seaforth he has previously published Large Scale Warship Models (2019) and Ship Models from the Age of Sail (2022).

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