Thursday, March 16, 2017

Assembling the CSS Manassas - 1/600 model from Bay Area Yards

In February of 2017 I acquired a model of the Confederate ironclad CSS Manassas. Oft remembered as the Confederacy's first ironclad, she was slow and poorly armed. If it was not for the fact her opposition was entirely wooden ships, Manassas would have been found seriously wanting as a warship.

Manassas had a short, but busy career engaging Union ships at the Head of Passes, making the journey north to briefly join the River Defense Fleet near Memphis before returning to New Orleans and participating in her final battle against the Union navy at Fort Jackson as Farragut ran the guns.

This project is a 1/600 scale model of Manassas from Bay Area Yards. (Kit # HCS-024). As 1/600 models go, this one is straightforward with a minimal number of of parts. One (1) hull casting and one (1) sprue of stacks and fittings.

Manassas straight out of the bag. 

The historical record concerning Mansassas is conflicted with some sources indicating that the ship had one or two smokestacks. Some theories hold it was two stacks, then one following a refit after the engagement at the Head of Passes. The model offers the option to build either of the stack variants. As I already have a Manassas with one stack, I elected to model this kit as the early two-stack version suitable for the Head of Passes battle.

The hull casting needed a little clean up around the edges. Most of the work is for the sprue casting at the aft end of the model with required a bit of cutting. After that it was very minor filing to smooth the edges and make the bottom of the casting flush.

A little scraping along the starboard waterline is causing the hull to look odd. 

Sprue with flash.

Sprue with flash removed from the short midships steam pipe. 

Basic assembly is easy. I based the hull of the model on a thin piece of styrene. As usual, I used Woodland Scenics Flexpaste as the adhesive to attach the model.

The hull with the base for the two smokestacks installed.

And an overhead view.

With the hull attached to the base with the Flexpaste. The midships steam pipe is installed. 
Starboard quarter view of the model.

Next steps are to install the stacks and get a coat of primer on the model!

Assembly continues on part 2.

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