Dear Model Expo-
After reading my original posting of 4 months ago, I now realize just how harsh I was regarding the Fair American kit build. I started this kit on commission for my good friend Josh, who by the way has 8 of my finished ship models in his private ship model collection. All of those 8 ships are plastic models, but super detailed and all built with care and highly researched as any ship should be before tackling a model of the prototype.
Josh wanted me to "kick up his collection a notch" and asked if I could possibly build him a true museum wooden model. I gladly accepted taking on the kit.
The transition of building plastics for some 30 + years and then going head long into a wood ship model is a much different animal. Yes, I was faced with some difficulties, but my patience overcame those hurdles and I steered to proceeding with the model.
I will say this about Model Shipway kits, they are tops!! The hardest thing about the shipmodel was the planking and I have done a lot of internet research on just how to do it. After all I have read and looked at it left my head spinning. I decided that the best way to learn is by doing it, try or fail, it's a true learning process, and I'm a better modeler because of it.
I started the Fair American back in late February of this year and I expect to deliver the finished model to my client before Christmas.
I love doing the rigging and it is my favorite process of scale ship modeling. Many guys in my model club cringe when I explain the rigging process to them, but to me it's the absolutely most relaxing part of constructing a classic ship model.
I have saved every shot of the construction process of the Fair American just for my own study and I would suggest this process to anyone assembling a wooden ship model for the first time. It's a great way to see the model "come together and get salty"!
I will send you photos of the finished Fair American when she is completed! I have to say that she is museum quality. I had researched the rigging for the type of rig of a Colonial brig, and my model is very accurate in that case. I have read that the rigging plan for the Fair American is not accurate and a little research on the part of the ship modeler will pay off in huge benefits and a model the builder will be proud to show off to anyone anywhere.
I know this reply is long in the tooth, but I just had to express fully that Model Expo is the best place for the scale ship modeler, fledgling beginner or expert model shipwright, period!!!
High tides, always-
Frank J. Ryczek, Jr.
Maritime Artworks Limited