Yes, it’s been three years since the last part was posted, but after quite a hiatus I suddenly felt like working on the Melvin, and as such she is getting a Part 4.
When I “completed” the model in 2013 I intentionally left off the deck railing because I thought it would be insanely fiddly to assemble and it would deform due to the flexing of the deck when opening and closing the ship (to access the internals).
But I decided I was finally up for the challenge of fiddling with the railing, and having run the ship multiple times since 2013, I had become confident that deck flex would not affect the railing. So I busted out some string and super glue and got to work.
Continue reading USS Melvin Part 4
I was only planning on having three posts for the USS Melvin saga, but at this point I really do need four to document all the crap that’s gone on with this thing. I last left off after the Melvin’s first real test run, which unfortunately took place in much less than ideal conditions. Nonetheless, I was able to determine that the performance was pretty good and that the boat was a little too heavy with four D batteries.
Thus, the first of many modifications were made.
Continue reading USS Melvin Part 3
Previously I left off on the abysmal performance of the stock drivetrain, but let’s talk about the modeling aspect of this project before going back. Last time I suggested that plastic modeling was about fitting parts and sticking parts, and J elaborated that it’s about compensating for deficiencies in the manufacturing process.
Of course, there are some deficiencies that you can’t really fix, such as the very clearly misaligned molds that made the above part. The offset is less than a millimeter, but when the part is only a couple millimeters in diameter, it’s pretty significant.
Continue reading USS Melvin Part 2
The name of the kit is “Blue Devil Destroyer”, but the prototypical ship is the USS Melvin, a Fletcher class destroyer of WW2 vintage. Wiki says that 175 Fletchers were built, and that the design was “generally regarded as highly successful”. Many also served with other countries after being retired from the US Navy.
I’m all about chasing my childhood dreams these days, and when I was a kid, I really wanted something like this. I was really into plastic modeling even though I sucked at it, and that really didn’t help me get a nice or RC model. Said hobby was of course the source of my Titanic hull, which became my latest “nice RC model” attempt in 2011.
That satisfied my craving for a while, but while we were working on some Lego trains, we went to a Pho place for dinner and stopped by a real hobby shop(!) on the way. I was telling J how I would love to have another ship to RC, and we looked at some small stuff, but that’s when I saw this kit. If I didn’t get it then, I probably would not think about it for a long time given the dwindling number of hobby shops in the world. So I told J I was going to get it, and the next day I did.
Continue reading USS Melvin (DD-680) Part 1