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 Author  Topic: PT-157 Model....and the next level


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of TheBridge  Posted on: Oct 10, 2013 - 6:37am
First, as this is about the PT-157, the Skipper [William 'Bud' Liebenow] and Torpedoman [Welford West] always ask me to send along thanks to PT enthusiasts who keep the flame alive on what they did during the times of great peril. They also say they were just doing their job

For the past couple of months I have been at work on the next step of the PT-157; which was the focus of my original book: 'PT-157: A Scale Modeler's Notebook'.

This past Memorial Day weekend I had the honor and pleasure of hosting a small get together with the PT-157's 'Bud' Liebenow (Skipper) and Welford West (Torpedo man). It turned out to be a real special time. Also attending were a couple of fellow PT modelers, Roy Forbes, Pat, Pat Hutchens ad Wayne Trexler and each of their wives. As a real treat, Pat and Roy brought their new Italeri PT models. I was very impressed with the Italeri model and I've also watched Stu Hurley's version as it unfolds on Jeff Davidson's very excellent website.

I saw a good number of details on the Italeri models that raised the bar for us scratch built model builders. Some of Italeris model surpassed those on my PT-157 model (some of them that is). The details that needed work were those that I had made to limit of the materials I had and hand dexterity.

Fortunately Im pleased with the 157 model's rounded details (such as the torpedo tubes, gas cylinder, gun barrels and so on). The details that lacked revolved around flat surface items. At the 1:32 scale of the 157 it is pretty impossible to make some of the flat surface details to the thickness (or should I say thinness) and impossible to include very small holes sizes, bolts, etc using materials found in the hobby store. For examples, on the actual PTs the following....

- The 3-fordeck vents were made of 1/16 sheet steel
- The base and uprights holding the rear 20mm depression rail were 1/8 steel
- Deck combing brackets were 0.078

....and so on. Using the three examples above (in the same order) at 1:32 scale the resulting thicknesses of the sheet metal sections are...
- 1/16 = 0.00195
- 1/8 = 0.0039
- 0.078 = .0024

You see the problem. The thinnest mylar sheeting I could fine is too thick to accurately make these pieces. And even there, the detail of the cuts and rounded edges would be equally difficult to do with your x-Acto knife.
So inspired by the Italier, which itself has some oversized elements, to resolve this I went back to a conversation I had with PT modeler, Jerry Beasley, sometime ago about castings and photo etching. For what I need I've chosen to make this next step a photo etch project.

For the 1:32 version artwork I am using a photo plate that provides me the following thicknesses:

Total Posts: 302 | Joined: Nov 22, 2009 - 3:04pm | IP Logged

Roy Forbes


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of Roy Forbes  Posted on: Oct 10, 2013 - 8:09am
Wow Bridge, it's sounds like this is still an on-going project. You are going to need a second book just to update your awesome first book on the project. First, let me invite your 157 boat to appear in the "What If" reunion diorama. I will be more than happy to pick her up when we are in Chino for the Pearl Harbor discussion on December 7th. I would also be most happy to return her to you on our next trip to Chino for the Warbirds Air Show in May. Second, we could also get those eye-level water photos I have been talking about while she is safely in my hands. Sounds like your piece of art is going to get even better Bridge. But remember, you only have until Dec. 7th to get her ready.


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David Waples


Post a Reply To This Topic    Reply With Quotes     Edit Message     View Profile of David Waples  Posted on: Oct 10, 2013 - 12:36pm
Keep us posted Bridge. Great to see modelers stretching their modeling skills in new directions. I'm interested to hear how you go about this.

David Waples

Total Posts: 1636 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm | IP Logged

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