Sunday, March 13, 2011

LST Scratchbuild Update and a New Ship

I've been a little slow in finishing up the LST for my Enfilade scenario, but I wanted to post a short update with a few picture of my work.

First off, just a short review. I'm scratchbuilding an LST based on the Iranian Hengam class, but my version will be a little shorter. A real 1/700 scale ship would be over 5 inches long, while I'm cutting mine back to 4 inches. So the final version will look a somewhat squished.

I'm using 1/4 inch basswood as the base of the hull. I originally glued two pieces together for the hull, but later figured out that would make the ship too tall (I had to go back and revise the design a little after these pictures were taken). Below you can see the original base hull design.
LST base hull design from basswood, with a cutout area for under the helicopter deck
After getting the base hull done and sanding it to be a little smoother, I added some sheet styrene for the main deck and the raised forward part of the ship.
LST- main deck in place
Now I was ready to add the side of the hull, which will be done with very thin sheet styrene. I used a continuous piece of styrene that wrapped around the right side, the bow, and then the left side. I will cover the aft end later.
LST - sides of the hull added
It was really at this point I decided the ship was too tall (I should have figured this out earlier, but didn't). I need to reduce the height by about 1/8 inch. It will still be a tall ship, but I think it will look better. Right now I'm working on reducing the height and I'm building the superstructure for the ship.

I will have some more photo updates of the LST and the painted missile boats, including the modified hydrofoil, next week.

Finally, I decided to buy a few things during the PT Dockyard's Winter Doldrums Sale. I got a few Taiwanese missile boats (those are for a later project) and I got a USS Independence LCS-2 ship. I had procrastinated on ordering my ships and Dave had removed the LCS-2 from the website just when I was sending my order (if you check the website you will see that it is no longer there). After a few e-mails back and forth, he said he would make one last ship for me. I thought I would share some pictures of the ship.
USS Independence LCS-2 hull
It is a really big model (and uses a lot of resin), especially when compared to most of the missile, PT and gun boats PT Dockyard makes. It measures almost 7 inches from bow to stern and the back end is around 1 3/4 inches wide. There are a lot of panels and doors on the sides of the ship (I'm not too sure how they look in the photo, but you can click on it for a slightly larger view). Here it is in comparison on to some of my bigger 1/700 scale ships. 
LCS-2 and OH Perry FFG size comparison
LCS-2 and OH Perry 3/4 view
LCS-2 and Burke DDG size comparison
LCS-1 and Burke DDG 3/4 view
The LCS-2 is a nice looking model, but because of its size and amount of resin that goes into each one, I can see why it is being retired from the PT Dockyard line. I'm looking forward to working on the model, but not until I finish my Enfilade projects.


  1. One of the far Eastern plastic kit companies is doing LCS-2 in plastic now - but it comes in at about £30

  2. The release of the plastic kit was one of the reasons Dave G. at PT Dockyard gave for pulling his version. I've seen the plastic kit for sale and it looks like it comes with photo-etch parts, which would make them more detailed than the PT Dockyard version. It would be nice if I could find the PE parts somewhere, but I don't expect them to be sold separately. I'm just hoping I can make this one look good when I'm done with it.

  3. I am looking forward to seeing the next stage in your work on the LST. Two questions, did you use a scroll saw to cut out the hull? Second, what sort of glue did you use for the siding of the hull?

  4. Chris,

    I actually used a coping saw to cut the parts (I would use a scroll saw if I had one). My friend Kevin, who is making cogs, uses a Dremel tool to cut his hulls.

    For glue, I use the Zap-a-Gap Medium CA+ super glue. I put it on the styrene fairly thick before putting it on the wood. For the thin sheet that I wrapped around, I glued one side, letting it dry, then the bow, again letting it dry, and finally the other side. It took a while to do, but turned out pretty well.