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US Coast Guard LCM(6) 1985

May 16, 2013 in Ships

LCM(6) USCG Cable Repair Boat. Another version of the LCM by Trumpeter.

The US Coat Guard utilized a number of LCM(6) as cable repair craft, used to string power line transmission cables as well as telephone to off shore lighthouses. These boats were 56 feet in length and had a crews cabin aboard for extended trips. This particular boat was based in Portsmouth NH and served lighthouses in New England.

Cable Boat “aground” ready for work.

River range light, Maine

The Chief maps out the work to be done first.

“Hot Work”

3 additional images. Click to enlarge

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12 responses to US Coast Guard LCM(6) 1985

  1. Wow….I A most impressive dio, Mike. That is some nice work. So many things in the scene on which to comment, one doesn’t know where to start. Is it a 35th or 32nd scale (and did you buy the figures or scratch them)?

  2. Thanks Craig for the nice comment.
    In answer to your question the model is a Trumpeter 1:35 kit. The figures are “kit bashed” i.e. torsos from Verlinden, heads from Tamiya, legs and arms from the scrap box. I usually don’t add figures to my models as finding prototypical CG and Navy figures are difficult to find. In fact the figures were the toughest part of the build!

  3. Mike, this is a beautiful and inspirational work! I love the detail and care you put in this project. It is a very nice diorama. If I may, personally I would have put a bit more of weathering on the boat especially on the white and grey surface because they look to clean compared to the rest. But I understand people have different tastes when talking about weathering…Also I think you can do more justice by taken better photos, with a nice background and a more controlled light environment (I recommended you use at least 3 sources of lights or getting a cheap studio light case…)

    Congratulations Mike!


    • Jorge
      Thanks for the nice compliment.
      As for weathering a model, it’s a “sticky” point with me. Too many ship builders (and model contest judges) believe a ship/boat model should be “rusted/weathered up beyond recognition”. I entered a ship model in a contest and the guy doing the judging observed my model “should have lots of rust on it”. He didn’t bother to read my entry form that stated I was a crewman on the actual ship. I guess he felt like he knew more about my ship in a marine envoirment than me. I only build what I’m familiar with and I can assure you, based on 31 years in the U S Coast Guard, we weren’t allowed the luxury of sailing on rusted, paint faded, beat up vessels(I served on patrol boats, high and medium endurance cutters, buoy tenders and even the Nantucket lightship). Presenting a “ship shape”, squared away appearence was a big part of shipboard life, call it professional pride. On the 82′ patrol boat for example we would moor up at 2:30 am and immediately a fresh water wash down of the hull and supersructure was undertaken….next morning any soot from the exhausts was cleaned off and Simonize automobile wax was applied and then buffed with an electric buffer made for cars..the white paint would actually shine in sunlight… Yes, some larger cutters after a long deployment (especially ice breakers at the South Pole) took a beating from hard operational tempo. But as soon as weather permitted the crew would be “turned to”, washing or painting away, even before we hit port. As for my cable boat model there is some minor “wear/tear” weathering evident the pictures don’t show. But even these small “work boats” are kept up to a high standard as we are in the public eye constantly. As a premier law enforcement/maritimesafety agency, no CG captain would ever allow his cutter to show any hint of poor hull maintainence, at least to the degree modelers depict or envision on their creations. I hope I’m not too long winded in my reply but I “weather” from experience, I never served on a dirty rust bucket. And yes, I have pictures of ships I served on!
      As for my photo taking abilities…you are correct in your observations…my old camera died so I purchased a new one and it has so many “bells and whistles” I’m still learning how to get the best out of it. I like to shoot outdoors, natural lighting is the best. As for background, I usually have a piece of cardboard behind the subject but was in a hurry that day and it shows…

  4. holy cow wait let me look again….holy cow that is an award winner so much to see so much going on really tells a story perfection I love it

  5. Amazing !
    So many stories going on at once and so well told.
    Regarding the weathering, I think it’s just fine, Coastie boats are normally spotless even buoy tenders dealing with loads of live & dead growth are cleaned up ASAP.
    Magnificent !

  6. Just curious….is this an out-of-the-box build (as far as the boat itself goes) or is some of it scratch-built – and if so, how extensive?

    • Hi Craig
      Well, let’s see…if you look at the photo of the unpainted boat all the white items (cabin, cable drums, cabin interior, rub rails, hull/deck stretched six scale feet, bow door modifications, life line stantions, and large cable davit are the principle items scratch built from Evergreen plastic stock. The diesel motor in the well deck was kitbashed as were the two electric motors that powered the cable drums. The liferaft, radar, spotlight, antennas, masts, small boat davits aft (among other things) are scratch built from brass and/or plastic. The prototype of the boat I based my model on was an occasional visitor(1985) to the CG station I was a crewman at. And being a model builder I took a lot of photos of the real boat, I hoped one day some company would offer a LCM kit I could modify!

  7. Mike…Wow! Outstanding diorama. Have been looking for a ‘500 or LCM6 model. I was a TT From Ports harbor, and worked on 560500 for several years from 1985 to 1990. Great memories. Eastport to Pt Judith. Some of the best days of my life….16 hr days, or foggy “maintenance” days. Your “long winded” reply was perfect. Yes we came in a bit “gamey” from seafloor sludge in the well deck but the crew kept her presentable! I Just retired after 30+ m’self. A great ride. Nice job!

  8. Thanks Nik, it’s great having an actual crewman comment on a model of his vessel!

  9. Mike, Great work! Send me an email.
    I am re-posting the photos of the “Fighting Coast Guard” you sent me in 2000.

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