BlueJacket blue sailor logo

December 2013
Vol 3, Issue 11


News,Tips and Happenings

Dear Shipmate:
Thanksgiving is just behind us, and the holiday season is getting into full swing!  Here at BlueJacket we get many questions about giving models as gifts. There are a lot of lucky husbands whose wives are shopping with us, and asking that we use a neighbor's address, or other clandestine ways of getting their gift purchase into their house without hubby getting any the wiser.  What a treat to listen to some of the schemes!

Of course, a gift certificate from BlueJacket is always appropriate, too.  My nephew always said about cash & certificates as presents that they are "always the right color and always the right size"

Hard to believe that the next newsletter will be in 2014.  Time has evaporated for me, but in a good way.  If you plan on ordering from our website, you will notice that we now take Paypal.  Also, we are offering a sale on some obsolete Floquil paint colors in our "Last Voyage" section.  Colors like "concrete" and "grimy black" etc.

In This Issue
Model of the Month
Something Fun
Tip of the Month
final message
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Model of the Month  -  Nantucket Lightship LV 112
For 47 years, Nantucket Lightship / LV-112 guided transoceanic shipping to and from U.S. east coast ports, through some of the most treacherous shipping lanes in the world. Mostly she was stationed 60 miles offshore to mark the Nantucket shoals, thus she was the first symbol of America encountered by thousands of immigrants. Many famous vessels such as the SS United States, the Queen Mary, Normandie and naval cargo vessels depended on her as a navigational aid. Her active service ran from 1936 all the way up to 1983
Currently, she resides in East Boston, MA as a floating museum, owned by the US Lighthouse Museum, Inc.  The above photo is from their website.
Our model of Nantucket is built to a scale of 1/8" = 1', for an overall length of 19".  It is a colorful and handsome piece, and the kit has a lot of photo-etched brass and Britania fittings that assemble over a solid carved hull.  The photo below shows what amazing detail photo-etching can produce.
You may notice that the stack on our model is different than the one currently sported on Nantucket.  This is because we chose to model her in her original 1936 configuration, which had a steam boiler.  In 1960 she was converted to diesel, hence the shorter stack. This and a few other variations could make a fun kit-bashing project for the winter.
Something fun

Tip of the Month  -  preparing our smaller blocks
We get calls asking how to hold and trim our smallest blocks, which are only 3/32" and 1/8" long.  Here's a photo of the blocks with a #11 blade for reference.

Obviously, they are too small to hold with your fingers and try to trim them.  I prefer to use a pin vise and #75 drill, while our Dr. Al Ross prefers forceps.  Both work equally well.

Once you have the little block secure, you can then go ahead and trim any remaining flash from the molding process with a hobby knife.

OK, so that's it, right?  Well, there really isn't any groove to hold onto your stropping material, whether it be fine wire, or line, or whatever.  So we have to make that groove on both ends of the block.  Now our larger blocks have that groove nicely molded in, but these littlest ones do not.  So what we do is to stand the block on end, and press the hobby blade into the end to make a groove.  It doesn't have to be very deep, only .005" or so, but it makes a huge difference when rigging.

And here's a shot of the finished groove.  Simple.

Next month, we'll talk about ways to paint blocks and fittings.
Thanks for your support


My final message in this newsletter will always be the same because it is what BlueJacket has done for 108 years, and we're not about to stop.


We appreciate our customers, we exist for our customers, and we listen to our customers. What we do is fun, just as I will try to make this newsletter. If you have any suggestions or comments, still, as always, please just give us a shout!


There's nothing I'd rather do than work on, or talk about model boats. Have fun!  




Nic Damuck

BlueJacket Shipcrafters, Inc.