As the title suggests, in this thread I will attempt to cover my build of a Roberts Class monitor in approx 1/144 scale. Hopefully it'll end up looking something like this, somewhere around 31" long.
A while ago I found a line drawing on the net and thought 'that looks interesting, I'd like to build that...'
like you do.
After enlarging the above drawing to the maximum useable size, I was left with a very blurry image still a quarter of the size I needed so this will not be an exact scale replica, more an interpretation. Luckily I've been able to use a CAD program to create a fairly accurate drawing on top of a jpg image which I was then able to enlarge to more or less the right size.
Sadly I don't have any pictures of the early stages of construction but it's simply a series of 3mm plywood frames and some long bits of 5x5mm timber with a proper technical name that I've forgotten and therefore probably a bit boring. I've half clad the hull so far with 150x3x2mm balsa planks but I've run out of wood. I did order more but it turned out to be thin ply that was no use for what I wanted to do so the hull was put on hold temporarily. I've fitted both motors and shafts, built and fitted 2 brass rudders and kitted out inside the hull for the various electrical bits and bobs.
The superstructure of the ship has been quite interesting to build, trying to decipher the rather rough drawing. On recommendation I bought myself a copy of Big Gun Monitors
by Ian Buxton and it's proved really useful with loads of photos and descriptions so I've managed to work most of it out. I've used a laminate of 20thou plastic card for the major components that I have drawn out with CAD then transferred to a Silhouette cutter along with various bits of brass sheet and tube.
Hull 13 - F40/F109 HMS Roberts/Abercrombie... I haven't decided which yet with various parts placed for photo purposes.
13x single and twin barrelled 20mm Oerlikon cannons, 2x quad barrelled 40mm pom poms, an octuple barrelled 40mm pom pom, 4x twin MkXVI QF 4" AA guns (in turrets) and the almighty twin 15" main gun - which incidentally is radio controlled, rotation and elevation - have all been lovingly handcrafted by yours truly. In fact, everything so far has been. The only things I have purchased have been the 2x 385 MFA motors. Everything else has come out of various scrap boxes. For example, the main turret is actually a corner block from an old pallet I 'accidentally' broke at work, hollowed out with a router as are the bow and stern blocks and the funnel is an offcut from an aluminium brush handle. Everything has an alternative use, you just need to use a bit of imagination.
When my new order of wood eventually arrives I will finish cladding the hull, then P38 it and test float it in the bath and hope it doesn't sink. The plan then is to tissue and dope it before painting in filthy primer red & grey. I have a feeling it's going to need a fair amount of ballast given the shape of the hull but I have a cunning plan. More on that later but I can assure you it will only cost 'pennies'