LOUIS HELOISE Part 1
By Dave & Stuart Small
Louis Heloise is a model of a French fishing boat or Bautier built
circa. 1900 on the northern French coast
My son Stuart and I decided on this model after seeing an article in
an old Issue of Marine Modelling Monthly
We sent off for the plans supplied by Traplet Plans Service Ref. MAR 2431 and upon receipt immediately started to worry. As we laid out the plans, we realized just how big it is, overall including bowsprit it is 62” long with a beam of 12.5” and 48” high from the waterline. It also had any number of dead eyes, blocks, reefing lines and other rigging that we had never heard of. Reassuring myself that there is a large amount of knowledge within the club that I can learn from we decide to go for it and make a start.
As we could not work together due to the distance between us, Stuart agreed to start the hull while I would concentrate on the mast and rigging. The keel was cut from 20mm Sapele and incorporated the lead ballast of approx. 6 Kg sandwiched under the keelson. After the keel components were set and glued as per plan the frames were added and planking could begin.
While Stuart progressed with the planking I started to think about the rigging. The first problem was how to make the pulley blocks. After several attempts, I decided to make them out of solid mahogany incorporating commercially available brass reeves.
Progress was quite slow during this period of the build but after finishing all the pulley blocks (I hope) next was to have a go at the mast and fittings.
The rigging lines and shrouds are temporary at this stage and will no doubt be changed on final assembly.
With the basic hull now completed Stuart handed it back to me for the next stage. The exterior of the hull was treated with glass fibre resin and 10-
However, it has resulted in a good strong hull which hopefully will withstand the rigours of transport in the back of the car
Decisions, decisions. Shall we fit a motor, which type of sail winch, how to drill a hole parallel to the stern through the pintle and into the hull ? After much discussion we decided to fit a small subsidiary motor and use a sail arm rather than winch.
Using 3 very extended drills and some luck I managed to drill a hole through the hull and pintle parallel to the stern post for the rudder tubes and hopefully this motor and setup will be powerful enough to assist when necessary.
The next job was to fit the stanchions, gutter and supports ready for the deck beams
With the stanchions finished and rubbing strakes fitted I could now re-
Still a very long way to go but at last it starting to look like a boat.
Before the deck beams were fitted it was time to wire up the electrics and check that everything works. Which it eventually did after initially managing to blow up the Turnigy remote switch.
Now came a big shock. Deciding to do a float test before fitting the deck beams and underdeck we had to add another 6 Kg of lead to get even close to the water line shown on the plan. This brings the ballast up to 12 Kg and may eventually require even more. If so this will have to be bolted to the bottom of the keel.
With the ballast fixed in with resin the deck beams and underdeck were then fitted allowing hatches for the sail arm servo, rudder horn and deck house
So that’s the story so far. Amazing how 12 months can be reduced to
5 minutes of reading.
Hopefully I will eventually cover the decking, painting, detailing and sail making. However, this may take some time.
LOUIS HELOISE Part 2
Loise Heloise is a model of a French fishing boat or Bautier built circa. 1900
My son Stuart and I started the model nearly two years ago, but what with
the Corovid19 virus and family commitments there have been a number of
However here we are at last, nearly finished.
The decking was completed using 12 x 1.6 mm Obechi with 1.0 mm black plasticard representing the caulking.
I could not put it off any longer it was now time to paint. I say that because I have had problems in the past with different paints reacting with each other or fillers. We eventually decided to go with Vallejo for the undercoat, topcoats and clear satin lacquer.
I will not describe every detail, hopefully the photo’s show the progress.
It was now time to finalise the rigging. I was lucky to find some pre-
Now to the sails.
This was an area that I really was not looking forward to. I have never used a sewing machine or done hand sewing. I was worried that I would spend hours making them and then not be happy, and as it turned out, I was right. Still live and learn. The second set (red) were much better, far from perfect, but much better.
Trying to hold everything straight while sewing the bolt rope
Well that’s it really. We did get a chance to have a maiden sail with the original sails and were very relieved to see that she sits well in the water and gets underway nicely even in a light breeze. I hope to get a proper video when we are allowed at last to sail at the lake and Covid is under some kind of control.