Rigging for biplanes and ships

Discussion in 'Painting Questions, Tutorials and Guidebooks' started by parsifal, Mar 13, 2012.

  1. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    What is the best method for stringing biplane rigging. I generally build in 1/72 scale and want to attempt some biplanes, but really have no idea how to go about this.

    In a similar vein, has anyone ever built the rigging for ships (not sialing, but modern - WWI, WWII or modern).

    As a starting point I thought of using fine fishing line and CA glue. If possible I wanted to put the upper and lower wings together, less the outer faces of the wings. That way I could glue the rigging at a point not visible from the outside, and have nice tight rigging. The down side is that the wing assembly has to be put together fairly early in the process.

    How have people approached this issue?
     
  2. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    Have no experience in either one but am interested in finding out as well. I only know I've seen poor representations where rigging tends to be too prominent and out of scale. If I had no other advice, I'd go with nylon invisible mending thread in a clear or slightly smoked colour.
     
  3. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    #3 Airframes, Mar 14, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2012
    In 1/72nd scale, Wojtek uses the very fine nylon thread pulled from ladies' tights - this is finer than the invisible thread, the latter being ideal for rigging in 1/48th scale.
    Although I haven't rigged a biplane for many years, I am virtually ready to rig a 1/48th scale SE5A, when I get back to it, and here's the method I use (Pics to date can be found in my 56 Squadron builds thread).
    Before commencing construction proper, identify and locate the attachment points for all the rigging required. Next, using a pin vice and very fine drill bit, drill holes at these attachment points; on the wings, drill the holes all the way through.
    Depending on construction sequence, it is often better to attach lengths of rigging in the relevant places, before fitting the upper wing, and some thought and planning will identify when/where this needs doing.
    The model can be painted in it's basic colours and, often, it will be found that some of the rigging points will eventually be covered by decals, which is a bonus.
    Using the upper wing as an example, take a length of the fine thread, and pass it through the pre-drilled hole(s), allowing a generous length hanging 'free'. If required, tie a knot in the end which will contact the wing, then carefully pull the thread into the hole, and then add a spot of CA glue. Repeat this for all the rigging points. Ignore the excess thread above the attachment points for now.
    Carry out a similar exercise on the lower wing, ensuring that all the lines are properly fixed and glued. Those surfaces which will be difficult to reach once the top wing is glued in place, can now be re-touched in the appropriate colour - that's the under side of the top wing, and the top side of the bottom wing.
    The construction can now continue, with the top wing, interplane struts etc fitted. Allow to fully set.
    Next, take the first rigging line, and pass it through the appropriate pre-drilled hole on the lower wing. Pull this tight, taking care not to over-tension, causing warping of the wing(s), and, using a pin-head or tip of a cocktail stick, apply a spot of CA into the hole. Maintain tension until set.
    Once all rigging is fixed, snip off any excess thread and, if required, fill the holes with a spot of PVA adhesive and allow to set. Once set, re-touch as required.
    The rigging can now be coloured, by using the edge of a a fine paint brush, for example a Number 1 or 2 brush, and running this along the lines, using the required metallic colour paint.
    This is a lot easier than it sounds, although can be fiddly, and is time-consuming. The most important thing, next to maintaining tension, is the planning and sequence of the build and rigging, to avoid or minimise awkward angles and difficulty of access.
    Hope this helps.
     
  4. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

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    Excellent advice, though i need to "do it" for the details to sink in.

    I expect ship rigging will be the same, or similar at least.


    womens panty hose eh....my wife will be pleased....
     
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