I'm using a methodto build a ship whichI think is pretty easy.
Most important of all I think, there is no "ultimate" solution for building shipmodels. It depends on your choice of scale andwhich ship you are going to build. But here are some ideas how I'm doing it and most of these ways have been tried several times.
The thig you will have to do first is to get some plans, and photos, the more the better. The plans should at least include the hull frames and the outer hull form. Without the frame-plan the whole thing is going to be tricky. My favourite source for plans is definitley "Floating Drydock" the have almost everything and they are highly reliable, never had any trouble ordering from them, everything arrived in time and in the best possible condition.
First thing I do is to blow up the plans that I have bought up in the exact scale which I want to build (perhaps the most imortant thing at all) Next I scan the frames and duplicate them on my computer and print them on ordinary paper. Theses are transferred to the proper material which you are going to use for your model, wood, styrene, or stiff cardboard, everything works petty fine. Next I make a "keel" no matter if the model is going to be waterline or full hull. The frames are then attached to that keel by simply cutting small notches into it at the proper places. Next several wooden parts are simply glued in between the different frames to make the whole construction sturdy
Here are some pics how this looks: These are the frames for my 1:72nd scale CVE, I constructed the whole thing in 2 pices so taht I could handle that monster during the upcoming years of detailing. The whole structure became very sturdy as soon as all the inner wooden beams were attached and when the cardboard inner hull were added.
Here you can see the middle "keel" (the whole model is only a waterline affair
I first attached a layer of stiff cardboard to the frames and after that I added 3 more layers of styrene making the whole thing very very tough. The outer styrene plating was fairly simple to work with.
The bow and the stern were made from solid wooden blocks which were attached with white glue and some screws to the rest and finally sanded down.
Since the whole model is about 9ft long a sturdy construction was quite important
Here you can see how I attached several more details to the outer hull:
Another project that I have been working on is the USS Brister, a DE, Edsall class, same scale (1:72) and about 3 and 1/2 ft long. In this partiular case I wanted to siimulate the uneven appearance of those hulls of an unarmored "tincan" The basic construction with frames attatched to a keel and several wooden pieces in between is all the same:
But in this particular construction I added a cardboard layer to the frames and then I placed severyl hundred small wooden beams along the hull. Over that I simply glued slightly thicker aluminumfoil (one way dishes) to simulate the "dented look"
This is how it loooks when the whole ship was colored (not finished yet):
The stern as well as the bow was once again made from solid wood and attached with the help of (a lot) putty
Now here is a complete different way I builded a fairly small watercraft. In this case once again 1:72 a USN Seal RHIBS
I this case I made the entire hull of ordinary car putty. I simply attached 3 small frames to the base and "the keel" all in the final form. After that I simply slapped on a fairly large ammount of that putty and gave the hull the almost final form.
The end result was achieved by sanding it down the my motor tool, took me only 2 hrs. to built the entire hull.
And finally another way to build a ship. In this case the forward hull sectio of a wreck. Iw wanted to guiive the onlloker a chance to see some of the inner structure. so in this case I had to "really" construct the inner parts. This became sofar the most complex "ship" that I have build sofar.
Here you can see the frames being cut and drilled:
Next the frames are being attached to the keel:The wooden piece is just for the construction process
Whenn all the frames are attached they were colored and
More detail were added such as the hawse pipes:
Since I wanted to model a wrecek I had to add the planking piece for pieceall made from styrene:
Here you can see the aftermost bulkhead of that ship and some of the plating already in place:
And here is the final result without color:
If you need more informations feel free to contact me, I will galdly give away all secrets of building a shipthat I knew of sofar.