Thursday, August 8, 2013

Ron Neilson's USF Confederacy by Model Shipways!

Ron Neilson sent us pictures and a quick review of his USF Confederacy 1778, Admiralty Model by Model Shipways - great work Ron! In addition to these photos, you can see more of his USF Confederacy 1778, Admiralty Model pictures at and in the Model Ship World Completed Ship Gallery.

Ron's comments: Greetings. I recently completed my USF Confederacy 1778, Admiralty Model build and thought you might be interested in some studio photos I took. These might be of interest to your customers on your blog site; please feel free to use them if you'd like. The file resolution should be adequate for online overview purposes, but if you'd like I can send much larger hi-res files.

Despite only a couple minor "hiccups" early-on (which Frank solved), Model Expo's kit was a joy to build. Although I substantially upgraded most of the wood and added Chuck P's aftermarket pieces, many of the fundamental components of the kit's skeleton were excellent.

You have created a winner with this excellent kit! Congratulations.

Regards, Ron


  1. Ron,

    Did you build this outstanding model straight from the kit? If not what did you change in your build? Thanks, jim in Maine

  2. Jim,

    Apologies for not responding sooner. I don't check this blog site routinely. And... I've been in the shop working on my next build!

    I have a suggestion regarding your question: shoot me an email and I'd be happy to detail my efforts for you (see below). The list of everything I upgraded would be too long to include here, but my short answer is that I did build the "skeleton" out of the box.

    Most of the deck furniture and many of the visible "top deck" items I scratched. Virtually all of the planking- hull, bulwarks, wales, decks, chains, trim was upgraded to boxwood ( about + $120). I did purchase Chuck Passaro's cannon set and resin cast figurehead (about + $115). I also used the majority of the kit's PE brass, but I used my technique of turning metal (castings and PE brass) into "wood"- a painting build-up technique that is quite effective.

    This kit is "advanced" and requires quite a bit of skill to assemble and finish properly- in spite of the very good instructions and plan set from Chuck/ME. If you've already built a few kits, you'd likely find this kit an excellent step up - fun too.

    My specialty is taking very well-designed kits (which, at best, include mediocre wood) and taking them up a notch or two. I also don't like to spend more than 10-12 months on a build- and I have a fixation on one build at a time and always to complete it. This is probably why I'll not likely ever scratch-build a complete, complex period sailing ship. I'm also a weird-o in that I LOVE doing 17-18th C masting and rigging )in spite of the Admiralty style Confed!

    Here's my email:

    I'd be happy to spend a little time on a specific list of items to change if you've committed to building the model. ME is an excellent company and they excel at support. I'm pleased to help promote their sales of good kits.



    On MSW ( "hollowneck"