The Nautilus Part 6: Masking

Posted April 9th, 2014 by Devin and filed in Modeling, The Nautilus

IMG_5247There isn’t a lot of surface area to mask on the Nautilus, but some of what there is happens to be quite intricate. For the forward bridge area, the two “gator eyes” looking protrusions, I decided to leave the clear plastic/glass out for better visibility of the small interior that I built.  Continue Reading »

The Nautilus Part 5: Lights

Posted March 10th, 2014 by Devin and filed in Modeling, The Nautilus

I’ve learned something over the past several days: whatever skill at soldering I once had — gleaned through lessons from my father and repair schools whilst in the Navy — has all been lost. While soldering these simple connections for this model I cursed a lot, burned even more, and even completely cooked an LED from the inside out. I finally got the wiring and lights hooked up and into the model, but it wasn’t a fun process. I either need to practice this skill, or I need to start buying pre-wired lighting kits.

The setup is simple, though, and that probably saved my sanity Continue Reading »

From WWI to Thomas Edison to the New York Circle Line to the banks of the Ohio

Posted March 10th, 2014 by Devin and filed in History

8561349835_7276b0d119_oHere’s a fascinating article about one of my favorite things in life: abandoned and rusting ships. Known as the USS Sachem during WWI and Circle Line V in New York City during the 1980′s, the boat has had a long and varied life, but now sits on the banks of the Ohio River in Kentucky, rusting away. While I hope someone comes to the boat’s rescue, for now I really love the photos of this rusty old hulk.

Full article on the Queen City Discovery website HERE.

The Nautilus Part 4: Bridge and Soldering

Posted March 5th, 2014 by Devin and filed in Modeling, The Nautilus

IMG_5225Ten days in Costa Rica and the coldest winter in memory in the north east have slowed my building.  Since I still can’t airbrush a lot (opening the window is NOT an option), I’m still plugging away at other items. I’ve added brass rods through the lower hull that will serve two purposes: to mount the sub to its base, and to provide power into the hull for the lighting.

I also installed the bridge assembly, Continue Reading »

Tamarindo Monkeys

Posted February 19th, 2014 by Devin and filed in Travel

IMG_5147I always say I’m going to shoot more photos and video when in Costa Rica, but I always get caught up in the working out (Kristen and I take part in the ReBoot Camp Retreats) and the other activities and forget to do much of anything else.  I happened to have my camera the other morning as we were heading out, however, and caught this video of monkeys on the move.

Click the photo for the video.

150 Years Ago Tonight: CSS Hunley

Posted February 17th, 2014 by Devin and filed in Civil War, Ironclads and Gunboats, Writing

hunleydock150 years ago tonight the Union 205 foot long sloop of war USS Housatonic reeled from an explosion and sank off the coast of Charleston, South Carolina.  The shallowness of the water, only about 25 feet deep,  would save most of Housatonic’s crew.  They climbed the masts and into the rigging to await rescue, only 5 out of a crew of 155 lost their lives.  As one of the survivors, Robert Flemming, clung to the rigging waiting for rescue, he saw something low on the water: a blue light.  He didn’t know it then, Continue Reading »

The Nautilus Part 3: More Cutting

Posted January 30th, 2014 by Devin and filed in Modeling, The Nautilus

IMG_5045Slow progress as of late. Honestly it’s just been too damn cold to do any building, so I’ve been focusing more on writing. I’ve forced myself to eek out a little progress on Nautilus ever few days, though, and since most of it has been in the hack/cut/destroy department, I’ve made a little headway.

I’m definitely lighting the model. I picked up some LED tape, which is exactly what it sounds like: adhesive backed tape with an LED approximately every three-eights of an Continue Reading »

The Nautilus Part 2: The Lounge

Posted January 20th, 2014 by Devin and filed in Modeling, The Nautilus

globeBeing a swanky science-fiction-enabled underwater craft, the Nautilus has a Victorian lounge with large bay windows. The scale of the sub is in question, as I stated before, and the lounge area really brings this to light: the desk along the wall has sets of books that are quite large compared to the built-in book case contents. I’m telling myself the ones on the desk are log books, and thus larger, and the ones on the wall are paperbacks for casual reading. That doesn’t explain why a writing desk dwarfs a pipe organ, though. In retrospect, I should’ve scratch built a smaller replacement writing desk. Oh well, next build.

In the previous post I showed the brass ceiling beams that went in looking all Continue Reading »

USS Monitor Lab Dark and Shuttered

Posted January 10th, 2014 by Devin and filed in Civil War, History, Ironclads and Gunboats

Photo taken during September 2011 visit to Mariner's Museum.

NOAA doesn’t have the funding to support operations of the USS Monitor wet lab at the Mariner’s Museum. While the regular museum, and I assume the research library, is still open, the lab with the tanks that house the turret, guns, engine, and other artifacts, have had the lights turned off and the tanks covered with tarps.

You can read the full story in the Virginia Pilot’s Online Edition.

The Mariner’s Museum web page has the full press release and various links of use.

There’s also a Change.org petition on the matter.

Wreck of Gunboat USS Westfield Recovery

Posted January 7th, 2014 by Devin and filed in Civil War, History, Ironclads and Gunboats

USS Westfield image from gulfwrecks.netOne of my big areas of interest that I’ve yet to really delve into in Civil War history is that of the ferry gunboats. When President Lincoln immediately implemented a blockade in 1861, there simply weren’t enough ships in the Union Navy to seal off the Confederate ports. The government set to buying anything that would float, including New York City ferries. The idea of a Staten Island ferry, loaded with guns, sent south and made a Continue Reading »