How to Make a Cardboard Colonial Ship

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Model shipbuilding is hobby that could cost as much or as little as your like. You an create attractive conversation pieces for the marine or historical enthusiasts with fine wood or can get started in ship building using common materials nearly everyone has lying around the house. A colonial-style ship is a three-masted ship as was used by the British and Americans in the 18th century. By using cardboard, you can make a simple, but elegant, colonial-style ship.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Reference materials
  • Graph paper
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Utility knife
  • Glue
  • Art supplies
  • Figurines

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  1. 1

    Decide the size and type of tall-masted ship you will be making. It is probably best to start with a smaller and less-complicated ship if you are new to cardboard shipbuilding. Decide a rough scale for the model and assign dimensions including height, length and width. Choose a ship design that meets your skill level.

  2. 2

    Use graph paper to draw the different parts of the ship to the scale you want to build it. Graph paper will help you keep track of the scale when drawing your ship sections. Create drawings of the two sides, ship bottom, top deck, masts, sails, figurehead and other ship parts using a pencil. Double check your measurements and designs to ensure all sides and parts will line up correctly.

  3. 3

    Trace the ship parts onto cardboard. Once you have your drawing finished, you will need to transfer those images onto cardboard. Cut out the ship part shapes from the graph paper using scissors, carefully following the lines. Place the cut outs onto the cardboard of your choice and outline the shapes with a pencil. Cut out the shapes from the cardboard using a utility knife or scissors as necessary.

  4. 4

    Attach the different ship components together. While there are several fastening methods including staples or tabs and slots, the easiest method is to use glue. Dry fit different sections together to make sure they will fit. Start gluing together pieces that connect such as the masts and sails or the sides and bottom. Glue together the large components first. Allow the glue sufficient time to dry before disturbing it.

  5. 5

    Decorate your cardboard ship. Depending on your needs, you may wish to spruce up your ship with a paint job or even figurines. Chose a paper-suitable paint to colour the different sections appropriately. If you wish, you can place period-appropriate figurines on the deck to give your cardboard colonial ship a crew of it's own.

Tips and warnings

  • Choose a strong adhesive that dries quickly to avoid unnecessary downtime when constructing your ship.
  • Always work in a well-ventilated area. Modelling glues can sometimes give off harmful fumes.

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