Preparing for the long journey ahead…


Today marks the beginning of what will likely be a multi-year journey building the Wappen von Hamburg.  This ship was built between 1667 and 1669 as a convoy ship to protect German Empire merchant vessels from pirates.  There were actually a series of three ships built under this name, the subject of this build log being the first in the series.  This particularly ship was lavishly adorned with numerous carvings, making it a unique build.  The Wappen von Hamburg was tragically destroyed by fire in 1683 killing many of the crew and soldiers aboard.  For additional information on the history of the Wappen, as well as some really nice photos of a scratch built model, check out this website.

The model I will be building here is Corel’s 1:40 scale model. Its finished length is 43 inches and its height is 36″.  This is an extremely high quality kit. However, as with many European kits, the instructions are very limited in scope, and the plans must be studied very carefully to ensure that each build step is thoroughly understood to prevent “painting oneself into a corner” so to speak.

Here is a series of photos documenting the contents of the kit:

Wood strip stock is predominantly walnut.
Bulkheads and other pre-fabricated pieces.
Silk flags, sail material, and decking.
Cannon assemblies, blocks, and various other small fittings.
Pre-cast figures and lanterns.
Laser etched window frames, gunport hinges, etc.

Before beginning, I tried to take stock of all kit components, as well as develop a cutting schedule for the wood strips provided.  This was a time consuming process as most of the referencing had to be done from the plans.  Here is a copy of the cutting schedule in an Excel spreadsheet for anyone who might find it useful.  I found that there seem to be several strips missing from the kit.  I’ll probably have to order these later once I have a better feel for what is needed.  No big deal though, walnut strip can be ordered from Model-Expo.

2 thoughts on “Preparations”

  1. Hello,
    I am very interested in your build. I too have just begun the Wappen. This website is very difficult to figure out. I can’t tell if this is a current build or how to navigate to other sections. Please let me know if this is current and if you’re going to maintain a build log.


    1. Thanks for this feedback. I agree, the current theme is too difficult to use. I’ve been working on updating it a bit today. Let me know if you find it easier to use next time you visit the site.



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