HMS VICTORY in dry dock

This is my second Victory – the first one was in a 1.5 litre bottle.

I was given a Demi-john and decided to do Victory in dry dock, the dockyard forming the bottle stand.

The hull was constructed in four sections, the fifth section being the deck which carried all the masts and rigging.

A long thread was inserted loosely into a piece of rubber sleeving fixed into the side of the bottom left hull section. This would be used to pull up the masts and rigging when the ship was bottled.
A temporary base was made which was used to position the locating holes in the hull. This base was then used as a template for the position of the locating pins in the dry dock.









The furled sails were next made from strips of wood. Paper templates were glued to the strips and the shapes cut out. 



The strips were then sanded on both sides to create the furled sails effect and painted white. Strips of brass rod were glued along the tops and painted black. More brass rod, painted ochre was fitted above them to simulate the yards.
Thread was wrapped around the narrow sections of the sails to simulate the lashings.
The yards were pinned in the centre and holes drilled in their positions on the masts so that they could be loose fitted in order to rig them and then left hanging whilst the deck was inserted and then re-fitted when the masts were pulled upright.



The masts were constructed to fold forward and fitted to the deck section and then the standing rigging from mast to mast was fitted with the masts held upright. The rigging was designed so that they would all be pulled upright with the masts by a single thread attached to the lower jib on the Mizzen mast, via the tube fitted in the lower hull.
The stays from the masts to the sides of the deck were fitted to the deck and left loose. These were then attached to their positions up the masts after the ship was bottled.





A template was made of the interior of the bottle. The dock was fabricated with strips of Jelutong and covered with a stone pattern which was selected from Google and printed on 160gm paper.

The temporary base was then incorporated into the base of the dock where the hull would sit and covered with the paper stone pattern. 



The dock was then inserted piece by piece into the bottle,  assembled and glued to the base of the bottle. A ladder was fitted inside at each end of the dry dock.

Next, the two bottom hull sections were inserted into the bottle and glued together.The left and right top hull sections were next inserted and glued to each other.

When dry, the top hull section was fitted over the tube and thread and glued to the bottom hull section. The thread was then pulled from the stern end and attached to the lower Mizzen mast jib on the deck assembly outside the bottle, making sure that it was long enough so that the other end of the thread coming out of the bow section of the hull was still outside the bottle.

The hull was now glued to the base of the dry dock.

When the hull was set and cured, the yards were unpinned from the masts and the masts were then folded down and the whole assembly inserted into the bottle and the deck glued into place on the hull, making sure that the jib thread was still free to move in its tube.

When the deck was dry, the jib thread coming out of the bow of the hull was used to pull up the masts and attached rigging. This thread was then glued where it came out of the hull at the bow section. When set it was trimmed and then also glued where it went into the deck from the jib for good measure.
The deck stays for the masts which were still trailing outside the bottle where then glued one at a time to their positions on the masts and then trimmed.



A box base for the bottle to sit in was made from 2mm card. A raised step was fitted all around about 10mm away from the bottle. Inside this strip it was covered with the same stone pattern as the dock and outside it was covered with a cobblestone pattern. I had some 1/200 scale photo-etched brass railings from a previous project and fitted them onto the raised step.



The finished bottle resting in the dockyard.


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