Waterline Warships by Philip Read. Seaforth Publishing, Barnsley (UK)
The author is a professional model maker who has been commissioned to build a static waterline model of the Ca class destroyer, HMS Caesar. He has photographed every step of the process and the book takes you through the entire build from research to the mounting of the completed model on a carved sea of timber.
The subject is interesting in that HMS Caesar is one of the 32 C class destroyers that were built for the Royal Navy from 1943 to 1945. Her sister ship HMS Cavalier was in service to 1972 and now resides at the Chatham Historic Dockyard as a memorial to the 142 royal Navy destroyers sunk during the Second World War with the loss of 11,000 sailors. Although modified HMS Cavalier would have been a valuable reference source for the project.
As with many warships, original plans for HMS Caesar were still available, as were plans and reference for armament and fittings.
A ship model can take many forms and the build of a display model permits the builder to use many materials that would not normally be used in working models allowing the high level of detail often seen in museum models. Coloured photographs of the completed model show the realistic detail he has achieved. When accompanying photographs the author clearly explains the components and materials used and his approach to the more difficult aspects of the build.
Whether building a model from a kitset, semi-kit or a scratch build such the subject of this book, the author has provided a very useful and easy to read step by step guide that will be a valuable aid for the builder.
The author states: ‘one of the joys of this work is that there are no rules, you make them up as you go along’. This is so true but reference to his excellent book would certainly make the task a bit more joyful.
The reviewer notes the Maritime Model Club of NSW holds regattas on the first and third Sundays of the month at Narrabeen Lake Middle Creek and again on the last Sunday of the month at Narrabeen Lake Berry Reserve.
Reviewed by Barry Clarke