Model Boats

(© Iain Murray 2016 - last update 16th December 2016)

I enjoy scratch building and sailing radio controlled model boats, and am a (past) member of the Dundee Model Boat Club.

I have a number of working models, including those shown below.

(All photographs are © Iain Murray 1999 - click on the small pictures to see a 640x480 picture)

M.V. Arran (1954), the first Clyde car ferry

I built the Arran in 1980-82 while I was still at school. She was built from commercial plans to 1/72nd scale and is 30" long. She is powered by an electric motor driving twin screws via a belt drive. Originally with single-channel radio control, she is now fitted with 2-channel radio. The model depicts the vessel in her original service condition in 1954, before the fitting of radar - you can see some pictures of the real vessel here.

M.V. Jupiter (1973), one of the current Clyde car ferries

High and dry, showing the odd hull shape (to scale) and bow propeller unit (not to scale!)

In the pond, with another builder's fine model of CalMac's Lochmor at 1/48th scale

I started the Jupiter in 1987, and though she is largely complete, I still have some fittings to add. She was built from my own plans to 1/72nd scale and is 38" long. She is powered by two electric motors driving two Schottel drive units (one in the bow, one in the stern) which simulate the Voith-Schneider propellers in the real vessel (model Voith-Schneider units are available, but would not fit in the model at this scale). She is fitted with 6-channel radio control (bow motor+rudder, stern motor+rudder, starboard vehicle ramp and lights). The model depicts the vessel as she was in 1982 with the "GOUROCK-DUNOON FERRY" logo - you can see some pictures of the real vessel here.

Stingray, from the Gerry Anderson T.V. series Stingray

I built Stingray a few years ago for a bit of fun. She was built from the Comet Miniatures 1/72nd scale vac-form kit, and is 12" long. For scale performance, Stingray would have to have very light working parts (she sits very high in the water!) so I placed all the motors, batteries and 2-channel radio into a "tube submarine" (made from an old drainpipe) and the kit is bolted to the top of this to float on the water (the brown tube and red propeller can just be made out in the photograph). An extra motor inside the kit itself rotates the Ratemaster at the stern for added realism! I also have a kit of Thunderbird 4 to fit my tube submarine, but have not sailed it as yet - SkyDiver from UFO to come next! 

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