1/350 APD (High Speed Transport)

Started by George R Blair Jr · 110 · 6 hours ago · 1/350, APD, DE, Destroyer Escort, High Speed Transport, Trumpeter, USS England
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    George R Blair Jr said 1 month ago:

    Destroyer escorts in WW2 were designed as high speed convoy escort ships that were capable of detecting and killing U-Boats. In the latter years of the war, the U-Boat threat was greatly diminished, so the need for these ships rapidly decreased. At the same time, the Marines were looking for a high speed transport that could rapidly deliver troops and equipment to enemy shores. Designers found that these destroyer escorts could be quickly converted into high speed transports that were capable of carrying up to 200 troops and 40 tons of cargo. They were equipped with 4 LCVP landing craft that were used to get the troops to shore, as well as having the armament that was capable of supporting the troops on the beach.

    I have always liked the way these ships looked and have long wanted to build one. For this conversion, I plan to use a Trumpeter 1/350 Destroyer Escort, the USS England. The USS England was a Buckley Class Destroyer Escort, which was converted into the Amesbury Class of APD (high speed transport).

    I don't build many ships, and I have never done a conversion of a ship model, so this should be an interesting project. I am still gathering information for the conversion, especially the for the Welin davits that were used to raise and lower the landing craft. I am also gathering information about the camouflage schemes used on these ships. I found 3D print files online for some davits that I think will work, but I need scale them to fit the ship. I am also searching for print files I can use to create the LCVPs. Files for the LCVP are easy to find, but most of them have flat bottoms for use with war games. I need to find files for a full hull, since the bottom of the landing craft will be visible when stowed on the ship.

    I hope to get started on this project in the next few days. Should be fun.

    5 attached images. Click to enlarge.

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    Spiros Pendedekas said 1 month ago:

    Excellent entry, my friend @gblair! Some extra work is ahead, your project will look really cool once done. Looking forward to your progress!

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    George R Blair Jr said 1 month ago:

    Thanks, Spiros (@fiveten). I don't build many ships, so this will be an interesting conversion.

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    John vd Biggelaar said 1 month ago:

    You started another great project with this ship, George @gblair
    A nice challenge and a step outside your comfort zone.
    Looking forward to it.

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    George R Blair Jr said 1 month ago:

    Thanks, John (@johnb). This should be fun, even though it isn't my usual model. I almost ended up in the Navy instead of the Air Force, and I still think ships are cool, even if I don't build many of them.

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    George R Blair Jr said 1 month ago:

    I got started today. The first thing I try to do is find some plans that I can work from, especially if it is a conversion. I was lucky enough to find a general arrangement plan for the APD class I am modeling which was close to 1/350 in size. It was very easy to use my copier to get a set of plans that are 1/350. The rest of my time today was trying to print some of the parts I will need. I have managed to find print files for the davits, the LCVPs, and some double bollards. Unfortunately, none of them came with what scale the plans are for. So, a little trial and error was in order. I have finally gotten the LCVP and davits into 1/350 size, but the bollards had to be reduced in size so dramatically that I haven't been able to get them to print. Perhaps tomorrow. Cheers.

    4 attached images. Click to enlarge.

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    John vd Biggelaar said 1 month ago:

    A great start, George @gblair
    Good to have this plan now where you can focus on. The LCVP's do look great. Good luck tomorrow on those extreem tiny parts.

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    Spiros Pendedekas said 1 month ago:

    Excellent start, my friend @gblair! Total success with the LCVPs. Looking forward to your progress!

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    Carl Smoot said 1 month ago:

    I'm just seeing this today George (@gblair). This will be a cool conversion for sure. Good luck with this build. I look forward to seeing your approach to this. Those blooards are included in my Flyhawk detail set a small turned rods (including the small caps). How they do this, I do not know. When I first saw these, I was thinking, "Are you kidding me?". šŸ™‚

    Perhaps for the LCVPs, if you haven't found any with complete bottom, you could scratch build the bottom on one print and then cast copies. Alternatively of you're inclined to do so , you could modify the print file. I have to admit that this 3D printer is definitely giving you option.

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    George R Blair Jr said 1 month ago:

    Hi Carl (@clipper): I am still working with the bollards. They are just so small that they are having troubles printing. I know it is possible to print them because I have seen 1/350 3D printed bollards on sites like Squadron. I just need to tinker some more.

    The LCVPs are a different problem. I found some files to print one with a full bottom, but after I printed them I noticed that the profile of the hull below the waterline is noticeably wrong. My experience isn't at the stage that I can modify the print file, so I need to keep looking for some files. I noticed that Shapeways is selling print files for some of their 3D printed items. I need to do some searching. In the meantime, I am working on my D-Day Spitfire, so I am productively using my down time.

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    Alfred van Paaschen said 4 weeks, 1 day ago:

    Just caught up with your postings on this ambitious project.
    Iā€™m impressed by the conversion work, George!

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    George R Blair Jr said 4 weeks, 1 day ago:

    Thanks for stopping in, Alfred (@alfred). I don't build a lot of ships, but I think this one will be fun.

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    George R Blair Jr said 4 weeks, 1 day ago:

    I spent the day with my granddaughter, so a really fun day, but not much modeling. I decided to build this conversion as a waterline model, so I started by attaching the thin, red bottom plate. The plate was a little bit longer than the hull, so I had to do a little work to get it to fit flush with the bottom of the hull. I started doing some preliminary measurements to see what I could use to build the new structure aft of the bridge. I also continued my experiments to see what I could get printed on my 3D printer for use on the conversion. I finally found an LCVP that looked good and printed well, as well as a 20mm single that prints well. Hopefully these will all work well on the conversion.

    4 attached images. Click to enlarge.

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    Spiros Pendedekas said 4 weeks, 1 day ago:

    Solid progress, my friend @gblair! Excellent 3D printing, both the LCVP and the 20mm look great!

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    John vd Biggelaar said 4 weeks, 1 day ago:

    Great printing work done, George @gblair
    I do hope that especially the 20mm can be detached easily.