BattleFleet Models1
SS Pearl by Jim Baumann
SS Wentworth III
SS Backworth
Type 212
YO-20 Class Steelhull Fuel Oil Barge 1/350
BattleFleet Models 1/350 Accesories
SMS Vulkan 1/350
SS Pearl by Peter Fulgoney
USCGC Tamaroa 1991 by Roy Allen
SS Pearl by Jim Baumann
OrangeHobby Ships Catalog
Dazzel Modelworks Ships Catalog
BattleFleet Models Photo Etch Catalog
Tamiya Catalog
Aoshima Catalog
Alliance ModelWorks Kits & Accesories
AMW 1/350 Detail Sets
1/144 ABER Turned Barrels
1/350 ABER Turned Barrels
1/700 Alliance PE page 2
1/700 Alliance PE page 3
1/700 ABER Turned Barrels
Lifecolor Basic Colors & Clear Coats
Testors Model Master Paints
Model Master Naval Paints Enamel
Model Master Naval Paints Acrylic
Model Master Enamel Stains
Lifecolor Paint Sets Catalog
ModelArt Books &Magazines
LionRoar PE & Accessories
1/350 Alliance Ship Photo Etch & Decals
Starling Models 1/700 Ship Photo Etch
1/700 Alliance Photo Etch
Barge Set III
Fine Molds 1/350 Ships Accessories Catalog
Fine Molds 1/700 Ships Accessories Catalog
Bronco Ship Models


BattleFleet Models produce a delightful little kit of the little coastal steamer SS Pearl BFM-728.


This kit was reviewed at and a fine rendition of this diminutive ship was built by model chum Peter Fulgoney

Now then...--and having read contemporary descriptions of these vessels and having studies countless photos of early steam driven merchant ships- and having studied the fine and inspirational models of merchant ship master Bob Wilson

It is my contention that .....

although the General Arrangement ( GA) plans often show these vessels with sailing rig... that in reality sails were seldom used for actual propulsion.... steam having quickly become reliable by this time.

HOWEVER... I reckon that in a rolling beam-on swell sails would often have been used for their steadying effect to inhibit excessive rolling....

I used this valid (in my view! ) pretext when I built the BFM Tramp Steamer SS Drumgeith.

This little project is also intended as a distraction from the 'serious' business of trying emulate every minutia on some obscure warship-- is my usual wont...

So rather than slavishly building a replica of SS Pearl--which Peter Fulgoney already has done rather well ... I shall use the kit as my basis for a bit of freelancing--or in common parlance:

.....making it up as you go along!!

Firstly I reshaped the stern with filler to make a more elegant counter; and also will induce a more pronounced sheer line; this has been achieved by gluing small blocks of styrene for and aft--when pulled done in the centre with the to-base securing screw it will give a more accentuated and in my view rather pleasing sheer line...



Not working to exact plans and photos to try and recreate a 1:1 scale ship, but rather giving reign to my whims is a new experience for me ...( in model shipbuilding anyhow) .. !! we shall see if this will all work out!!

Progress has been satisfyingly brisk!

I added some underwater hull on the starboard side so that the vessel could heel a little in the breeze and beam-on rollers

The ship was mounted using a screw to pull down the amidships section and create the desired sheer line

I cut off some of the wt doors and substituted some PE from Voyager.

I made the traditional for that type of vessel wood paneled bridge surround using some WEM Ark Royal catwalk PE.

The wheelhouse was constructed of 1/350 handrail, subdivided with stretched sprue, the gaps in-filled with white glue.

With paint on it looks quite effective!!

Scupper doors made of paper have been added to the hull sides , hawse pipes drilled and most of the deck painting completed


The sometimes hazardous journey from Bridge to foredeck- bypassing the low lying well deck which in a seaway could have a lot of water sluicing around or even be partially awash...- on SS pearl and many vessels of here era could be effect by use of the raised catwalk.

I made mine of a strip of brass PE waste, to which were added GMM goldplus railings and some 1/350 twin bar rail cut down carefully to make the legs; numerous testfits were required...



The wheel house gained a roof made of paper infused with CA glue


The kit funnel was fine in its own right-however I desired mine a bit taller still in keeping with an old photo in a 1930's book-

'Shipping wonders of the World' ....--- a most worthwhile tome indeed to browse .!

A new funnel was made of copper tubing which had the opening thinned down further and the steam pipe separated further in accordance with a GA plan of Pearl- the upper bracket being made witha droplet of white glue

The accommodation aft had the 2 x large engine room vents added( BFM resin items)
These were drilled vertically to create a hole and then had the edges of the mouth thinned down by hollowing out with a bur-tool held in a pinvice.


The foredeck had the handrails added--and the beak steel wall increased in height .windlass furnished with brake handles, anchor chain ( twisted wire ) and a vent made of solder wire ( core drilled out) ; anchors were added and the stairway handrails made of fine 1 bar railing.


The ships boats required cradles --these were made of (WEM Askold) PE parts and davits bent out of wire


Nevertheless a few snatched moments resulted in some open ship s boats being made with separate thwarts, some finely tapered masts ( BMK from Germany) being installed and a bit of sail making ...

The furled sail on the middle mast has been made of white glue and can be seen while wet - ergo white )


The sea has had a first coat...


Well,..despite my real-life distractions I did succeed in completing this wee shippy!

Finally invented a name for my fictitious ship

SS FELICITY of Southampton.

She flies the 'Red Duster' ( Merchant Ensign )

and is see here on passage with a quartering sea from Falmouth to Southampton , July 1901...

I enjoyed most --as ever-- doing the rigging and the colouring of the sea...

It was also an entirely new experience for me to create an amalgam of ship's characteristic's of her era.!

Hope you like this flight of fancy!

Jim Baumann






All BATTLEFLEET MODELS master pattern design work is copyrighted ©2005-2017
All Rights Reserved