Firehearth for H.M.S. Fly

The Firehearth for the H.M.S. Fly is an addition to the original plans and is a completely optional extra.

Lloyd Mathews was kind enough to design and build this and with his plans and notes below it is a very achievable piece. Thank you Lloyd.

Note: there was a building error during this that we have left in. I will put in the correction notes where needed so that you wont make the same error. The correction notes are a really good learning tool and show how not to wreck your model. There will be a Note before you come to the correction are. The text will be in green.

The Copper Kettle

"Copper was regarded as the most suitable material for a cooking pot, largely because early iron did not stand up so well to heat. In the 1750s there was a theory that copper contributed to scurvy, and several ships were fitted experimentally with iron kettle, but this did not last long, and copper remained predominant until the 1780s. The copper kettle was made up of several plates riveted together. The late seventeenth kettle appears to have been round in shape , rather like a cauldron. By the 1700s it was cylindrical, with a height of about two thirds its diameter. A horizontal pipe with a tap was fitted near the bottom of the side to run of the water. The bottom of the kettle was flat, or slightly curved. The top had a removable lid, about half the diameter of the whole kettle. By the 1680s, all ships of the Sixth Rate and above had two kettles, placed side by side in the furnace. They were known as the fish kettle and the small kettle." (Lavery 1987, p.197)*

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A firehearth is not a necessity, but for authenticity one will be fitted. The dimensions have been taken from the original plan Figure O1; this is the only information that has been found for 'Fly', so the firehearth used on the 'Dorchester' of 1757 will be used as a guide for building, Figure O2.

Figure 01 - Fireplace from the original plans of H.M.S. Fly
Figure 01 - Fireplace from the original plans of H.M.S. Fly


Figure O2 - Firehearth of the 'Dorchester' 1757, (Lavery 1987, p.197)
Figure O2 - Firehearth of the 'Dorchester' 1757, (Lavery 1987, p.197)*

* Lavery, Brian 1987, "The arming and fitting of English ships of war 1600 -1815, Conway Maritime, [Batsford, National Trust and Conway Anova Books] p.195-201

Using Figure O2, a plan was made for the firehearth Figure O3.

Figure O3 - Plan of the proposed firehearth for H.M.S. Fly.
Figure O3 - Plan of the proposed firehearth for H.M.S. Fly.

Firehearth Plans in PDF format.

The height of the firehearth is shown as 24 mm on the plan, but this has been taken from this authors model. Check that this is the correct height between the planked Main Gun Deck Pt. No 28 and the underside of the fitted Stove Chimney Pt. No 40, in the Poop Deck Pt. No 29.

Ensure that when printing the plan that the printer properties are set to 100% Figure O4.

Figure O4 - To print the plan 'one to one', ensure print scale is set to 100%.
Figure O4 - To print the plan 'one to one', ensure print scale is set to 100%.

The plan was drawn without any idea of how it was going to be constructed. In reality there will be some variations to the dimensions shown, mainly to accommodate the material that is commonly available, so making it simpler to build.

Figure O5 is constructed from 15 mm x 15 mm pine Figure O6.

Figure O5 - Cross section of stove
Figure O5 - Cross section of stove

Figure O6 - 15 mm x 15 mm pine
Figure O6 - 15 mm x 15 mm pine

The wood needs to be cut square, and this author used the following method. A 20 mm long section is marked using a ruler and 'set square' on all four sides, Figures O7 and O8.

Figure O7 - Pine marked using a 'set square'
Figure O7 - Pine marked using a 'set square'


Figure O8 - Pine marked on all 4 sides
Figure O8 - Pine marked on all 4 sides

The pine is successively cut a little at a time on each side with a 'junior' hacksaw, Figures O9, O10 and O11. A new saw blade was used at the start of this operation.

Figure O9 - 'Junior' hacksaw used to cut the pine
Figure O9 - 'Junior' hacksaw used to cut the pine


Figure 010 - Pine is successively cut a little at a time on each of its four sides
Figure 010 - Pine is successively cut a little at a time on each of its four sides


Figure O11 - Pine is squarely cut
Figure O11 - Pine is squarely cut

The open fire is cut into one end of the 20 mm pine section; this is archived using a rotary sanding disc attachment for the craft drill. This author cuts his own sanding discs and fits to the attachment with two side sticky tape Figures O12, O13 and O14.

Figure O12 - Sanding disc attachment and sand paper
Figure O12 - Sanding disc attachment and sand paper


Figure O13 - Round disc cut from the sand paper and two sided sticky tape applied to the back
Figure O13 - Round disc cut from the sand paper and two sided sticky tape applied to the back


Figure O14 - Disc stuck to rotary sanding attachment
Figure O14 - Disc stuck to rotary sanding attachment

The craft drill is fitted in its stand with the rotary sanding attachment Figure O15.

Figure O15 - Craft drill fitted into stand
Figure O15 - Craft drill fitted into stand

The shape of open fire end of the pine section is created using the rotary sander; needle files and sandpaper are used to finalize the shape Figure O16.

Figure O16 - Open fire end created in the pine section
Figure O16 - Open fire end created in the pine section

The finished pine section is similar in shape to the cross-section shown in Figure O5, Figure O17.

Figure O17 - Open fire end of the pine section
Figure O17 - Open fire end of the pine section

The sides of the stove are made from scraps of deck planking Figure O18. Clear sticky tape is put onto the cutting mat and odd strips of 0.5 x 3 mm Tanganyika (deck planking) are glued side-by-side. To ensure that they are held together, clear sticky tape joins each plank together, Figure O19. The first plank is pushed against the edge of a ruler.

Figure O18 - Odd pieces of deck planking
Figure O18 - Odd pieces of deck planking


Figure O19 - Planks held together with clear sticky tape
Figure O19 - Planks held together with clear sticky tape

When dry, the planks are carefully lifted from the clear sticky tape, and a set square and a block of wood are used to mark a square line across the planks Figure O20 and Figure O21. The block of wood below the planks helps to support them when the line is being drawn. This enables square edges to be cut which is very important for something that is so small.

Figure O20 - Square line being drawn on the planks
Figure O20 - Square line being drawn on the planks


Figure O21 - Square edge drawn on the planks
Figure O21 - Square edge drawn on the planks

The correct sizes are drawn and cut for the side's of the oven Figure O22, and then they are both glued to the side of the pine section Figure O23.

Figure O22 - Planks are cut to the correct size for the side's of the stove
Figure O22 - Planks are cut to the correct size for the side's of the stove


Figure O23 - Sides are glued to the stove.
Figure O23 - Sides are glued to the stove.

This process is repeated and a further two sides are fitted to the stove Figure O24.

Figure O24 - Further two side's glued to the stove
Figure O24 - Further two side's glued to the stove

The external width of the stove is approximately 16.25 mm, compared to the plan which is 17 mm. The bottom part of the open fire end is fitted; this is approximately 2.0 mm in width Figure O25.

Figure O25 - Bottom part of the open fire is cut to size (photograph was taken before two sides were fitted to the stove)
Figure O25 - Bottom part of the open fire is cut to size (photograph was taken before two sides were fitted to the stove)

For the smoke hood a piece of pine is cut squarely as illustrated in Figures O8 to O11, to the dimensions as shown in Figure O3; they are marked on it Figure O26.

Figure O26 - Hood dimensions marked on the piece of pine
Figure O26 - Hood dimensions marked on the piece of pine

The corners are first remove using the sanding disc and craft drill Figure O27.

Figure O27 - Corners are removed
Figure O27 - Corners are removed

The smoke hood is held between two blocks of wood and a needle file is used to recess the top aft side of the hood Figure O27, O28 and O29.

Figure O28 - Smoke hood held between two blocks of wood
Figure O28 - Smoke hood held between two blocks of wood


Figure O29 - Top of smoke hood recessed
Figure O29 - Top of smoke hood recessed

To shape the aft side of the smoke hood, miniature rotary sanding disc's were made, using flat ended diamond grinding bits. A hole puncher was used on a scrap piece of clear acetate; Araldite was used to glue the resulting disc to the end of the grinding bit. When it had dried, two sided sticky tape was fixed to the plastic disc. The hole puncher was used on abrasive paper and the disc was fixed to the two sided sticky tape Figures O30 to O36. The smoke hood was then completed Figure O37.

Figure 030 - Flat ended grinding bit
Figure 030 - Flat ended grinding bit


Figure 031 - Hole puncher used to cut plastic disc
Figure 031 - Hole puncher used to cut plastic disc


Figure O32 - Plastic disc
Figure O32 - Plastic disc


Figure O33 - Araldite is used to fix plastic disc to end of grinding bit
Figure O33 - Araldite is used to fix plastic disc to end of grinding bit


Figure O34 - Hole puncher used to create sanding discs
Figure O34 - Hole puncher used to create sanding discs


Figure O35 - Two sided sticky tape put on plastic disc
Figure O35 - Two sided sticky tape put on plastic disc


Figure O36 - Miniature sanding discs made from diamond grinding bits
Figure O36 - Miniature sanding discs made from diamond grinding bits


Figure O37 - Completed Smoke hood
Figure O37 - Completed Smoke hood

A scrap piece of wood strip 5 mm x 2 mm was used to form the forward side of the smoke hood Figure O38.

Figure O38 - Forward side of the smoke hood formed
Figure O38 - Forward side of the smoke hood formed

The base of the firehearth is made using scrap pieces of 1 mm ply and the spit tray edge is made from 0.5mm deck strip and loosely positioned Figure O39, O40 and O41.

Figure O39 - Material for base of firehearth and spit tray
Figure O39 - Material for base of firehearth and spit tray


Figure O40 - Spit tray formed
Figure O40 - Spit tray formed


Figure O41 - Spit tray and base loosely positioned
Figure O41 - Spit tray and base loosely positioned

The fire grate bars are now fitted; an AMATI 'Action Kit' 7383/20 was used to hold an 80 gauge drill Figure O42. This was used to drill evenly spaced holes Figure O43 and O44.

Figure O42 - Hand drill from AMATI 'Action Kit' 7383/20
Figure O42 - Hand drill from AMATI 'Action Kit' 7383/20


Figure O43 - 80 gauge holes drilled
Figure O43 - 80 gauge holes drilled


Figure O44 - Evenly spaced holes for the fire grate bars
Figure O44 - Evenly spaced holes for the fire grate bars

The fire grate bars are made from 0.3 mm brass rod, and nail clippers are used to trim off the ends Figure O45 and O46. A pin is dipped into Cyanoacrylate super glue; the ends of the brass rod are glued into position; a needle file is used to smooth the rod ends Figure O48.

Figure O45 - 0.3 mm brass rod used for the fire grate bars
Figure O45 - 0.3 mm brass rod used for the fire grate bars

NOTE: This is where the error was made as explained at the start of the page. Just add an extra brass rod at the bottom. to see how the error was corrected please click here for the additional notes.

Figure O46 - Nail clippers used to cut the excess brass rod
Figure O46 - Nail clippers used to cut the excess brass rod

The fire grate is divide into three separate fires using scrap pieces of deck planking Figure O47 and O48.

Figure O47 - Fire grate divided into 3 fires.
Figure O47 - Fire grate divided into 3 fires.

When the base was fitted to the firehearth it was discovered that a mistake had been made in the number of fire grate bars fitted; 5 had been fitted, but it was felt that there should have been an additional one Figure O48. This is rectified in "Mistakes and Corrections" and the difference can be seen Figure O49.

Figure O48 - An additional fire bar should have been fitted
Figure O48 - An additional fire bar should have been fitted


Figure O49 - Firehearth with an additional fire bar added
Figure O49 - Firehearth with an additional fire bar added

The hinged gantries are made from 0.8 mm x 0.4 mm micro brass tube and 0.4mm brass rod Figure O50. The brass tube is cut 3 mm in length, but whilst it is being cut the brass rod is inserted in the micro tube to prevent it from buckling.

Figure O50 - Hinged hanging gantries
Figure O50 - Hinged hanging gantries

There are various ways that the hanging gantries can be fixed to the firehearth, and every modeller will experiment, to find which is best.

The fixing of the gantries is a little tricky, and when making the Alexander Brodie stove they were fixed after the smoke hood had been glued. On reflection they should have been fitted before the smoke hood, and this is what has now been done. As illustrated in Figure O51, the firehearth and a pair of self closing tweezers are sticky taped to two pieces of wood. The gantry is lined up to the correct position and a drop of Cyanoacrylate super glue is applied with a pin to glue the gantry in place.

Figure O51 - Fixing of the gantries
Figure O51 - Fixing of the gantries

The smoke hood is then glued to the firehearth Figure O52.

Figure O52 - Firehearth with gantries and smoke hood
Figure O52 - Firehearth with gantries and smoke hood

The plan Figure O3, is printed ensuring that it is at 100% scale; the three sides and top are cut out Figure O53, and using slightly diluted P.V.A. adhesive they are glued to the firehearth, with any excess paper around the edges removed Figure O54.

Figure O53 - Three sides and top for the firehearth
Figure O53 - Three sides and top for the firehearth


Figure O54 - Three sides and top fixed to the firehearth
Figure O54 - Three sides and top fixed to the firehearth

The lifting rings are made; for these, small round rings were purchased from a jewellery store Figure O55.

Figure 055 - Necklace ring from a jewellery store
Figure 055 - Necklace ring from a jewellery store

The lifting rings are fixed to the firehearth using 0.3mm brass rod, which had been bent around the rings Figure O56. Using a 73 gauge drill their hole positions are drilled as indicated in Figure O54.

NOTE - the lifting rings on the forward side of the stove are not show, as they had been omitted by mistake, but there should be six of them.

Figure O56 - Lifting rings for the firehearth
Figure O56 - Lifting rings for the firehearth

The ash grate was drilled using a 61 gauge drill as illustrated in Figure O57, and needle file was used to square the corners of the grate Figure O58.

Figure O57 - Craft drill held in stand and lined up with ash grate
Figure O57 - Craft drill held in stand and lined up with ash grate


Figure O58 - Ash grate created in firehearth
Figure O58 - Ash grate created in firehearth

The kettle lids are made from scrap deck planking wood Figure O19, and the printed lids are glued on and cut out Figure 059 and O60.

Figure O59 - Kettle lids glued to scrap deck planking
Figure O59 - Kettle lids glued to scrap deck planking


Figure O60 - Kettle lids cut out
Figure O60 - Kettle lids cut out

Using two side sticky tape, place the cut lids on the end of a lollipop stick Figure O61. Holes are drilled using a 78 gauge drill, for the handles (not shown).

Figure O61 - Kettle lids placed on two sided sticky tape
Figure O61 - Kettle lids placed on two sided sticky tape

The handles are made from 0.3 mm brass rods which are bent using the round jewellery pliers Figure O62. These are then placed in the end of lollipop sticks, ready for painting Figure O63.

Figure O62 - Round nosed jewellery pliers
Figure O62 - Round nosed jewellery pliers


Figure O63 - Brass rod bent around the round nosed pliers
Figure O63 - Brass rod bent around the round nosed pliers

The lifting rings Figure O56, are held in the end of a lollipop stick for painting Figure O64.

Figure O64 - Lifting rings held in lollipop stick
Figure O64 - Lifting rings held in lollipop stick

The four hanging rails are made using 0.4 mm brass rod; the length of one bent end is longer than the other so the shorter end will not protrude into the aft fire grate space Figure O65. Holes are drilled using a 76 gauge drill approximately 0.5 mm from the edges, according to the positions shown of the printed side sides Figure O66.

Figure 065 - Side hanging rail
Figure 065 - Side hanging rail


Figure O66 - Side hanging rails fitted
Figure O66 - Side hanging rails fitted

The two crocks are made from round tooth picks that have been shaped at the ends, and a 74 gauge drill creates a hole through its diameter Figure O67.

Figure O67 - Creating the crocks
Figure O67 - Creating the crocks

The crock taps are made using 0.8 mm rod; 'pencil points' are made in the ends Figure 68.

Figure O68 - 0.8 mm rod is used for the taps
Figure O68 - 0.8 mm rod is used for the taps

The 0.8 mm rod is bent just below the point Figure O69.

Figure O69 - 0.8 mm rod is bent at right angles
Figure O69 - 0.8 mm rod is bent at right angles

The crocks are assembled and fitted to the stove however, it is important to note that the crock tap handles must face towards the centre, so that the crocks will fit between the Fore mast Bit (Aft) Pt. No 66. This author made the mistake of fitting them incorrectly Figure O70, and they should be fitted with the handles facing inwards Figure O71.

Figure O70 - Crocks incorrectly fitted
Figure O70 - Crocks incorrectly fitted


Figure O71 - Crocks correctly fitted so they will be between the aft Fore mast Bits
Figure O71 - Crocks correctly fitted so they will be between the aft Fore mast Bits

Oven and fire grate doors are made in a similar way as the kettle lids, and 0.6 mm brass rod is cut to simulate the hinges Figure O72.

Figure O72 - Oven and grate doors
Figure O72 - Oven and grate doors

Thin card and scrap pieces of wood are used for the hinge brackets and door knobs Figure O73.

Figure O73 - Oven and fire grate doors
Figure O73 - Oven and fire grate doors

The completed doors are positioned and glued on the stove; a thin card is used to represent the fire grate latch Figure O74.

Figure O74 - Oven and fire grate doors fitted
Figure O74 - Oven and fire grate doors fitted

The spit brackets are made from 0.3 mm brass rod, which are fitted into the edge of the stove side Figures O75 and O76. Drill the bracket holes using a 78 gauge drill; the craft drill is fixed in its stand to keep it steady and horizontal, as used in Figure O57. They are then fixed using a small amount of P.V.A. applied using a pin. Using P.V.A. gives time to position the brackets correctly.

Figure O75 - Spit bracket
Figure O75 - Spit bracket


Figure O76 - Spit brackets fitted in edge of stove side
Figure O76 - Spit brackets fitted in edge of stove side

The stove is provisionally fitted into position so the correct height for the stove feet can be determined Figures O77, O78, O79, O80 and O81.

Figure O77 - Position of stove checked
Figure O77 - Position of stove checked


Figure O78 - Ensure that the stove Crocks clear the Aft Fore mast Bits
Figure O78 - Ensure that the stove Crocks clear the Aft Fore mast Bits


Figure O79 - Use packing pieces to raise stove chimney to underside of poop deck
Figure O79 - Use packing pieces to raise stove chimney to underside of poop deck


Figure O80 - Stove chimney sits below underside of poop deck
Figure O80 - Stove chimney sits below underside of poop deck


Figure O81 - Stove legs are made from deck planking strips
Figure O81 - Stove legs are made from deck planking strips

The approximate dimensions of the stove legs Figure O81, are 1 mm x 4 mm.

With the stove sitting on the packing pieces Figure O79, the 8 legs are fitted with P.V.A. adhesive; the guide marks are used to ensure they are all level Figure O82.

Figure O82 - Stove feet are fitted
Figure O82 - Stove feet are fitted

Round pieces of masking tape are used to cover the green kettle lids, and brass rod is placed into the holes used for the lifting rings to prevent paint from clogging them.

The stove is sprayed with an 'Etch Primer', and red paint is applied to the inside of the ash grate recess Figure O83.

Figure O83 - Stove is primed
Figure O83 - Stove is primed

Primer is also applied to the Kettle Lids Figure O61, Kettle Lid Handles Figure O63 and the Lifting Rings Figure O64, and the primer was allowed to dry according to the instructions.

The Lifting Hooks were sprayed with 'Humbrol' Black Satin 85, Kettle Handles Grey and Kettle Lids with Enamel Spray Paint - Copper.

A little tissues paper is placed in the ash grate recess; this prevents grey paint from being sprayed in, when painting the stove.

The stove is sprayed with Grey, (if in the UK: 'Halfords' artfx 370376)however, this author was a little heavy handed with the spraying and the end result was not as good as that achieved when painting the 'Alexander Brodie Stove' Figures O84 and O85.

This highlights the importance of the care and patience that is required when painting objects at 1:64 scale, as the thickness of the paint becomes a material factor in the scale, as illustrated by the two Figure's below. For this reason a special section on spray painting will be added at the end of this section, where the techniques needed to be used will be further explained.

Figures O84 & O85 - Difference in spray painting
Figures O84 - Difference in spray painting


Figures O84 & O85 - Difference in spray painting
Figures O85 - Difference in spray painting

The handles are fitted to the Kettle Lids Figure O86.

Figure O86 - Handles fitted to Kettle Lids
Figure O86 - Handles fitted to Kettle Lids

The Kettle Lids and Lifting Rings are fitted to the stove Figure O87.

Figure O87- Kettle Lids and Lifting Rings fitted to stove
Figure O87- Kettle Lids and Lifting Rings fitted to stove

The base on which the stove stands Figure O88, is printed at 1:1 scale, see Figure O4, and fixed to thin card; this is cut to the correct size Figure O89. The white edges of the card can be coloured appropriately.

Figure O88 - Base for stove (printed 1:1 scale, see Figure 04)
Figure O88 - Base for stove (printed 1:1 scale, see Figure 04)

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Figure O89 - Base for stove positioned
Figure O89 - Base for stove positioned

The completed stove can now be loosely fitted Figures O90, O91 and O92, and it can be seen to fit like a 'Glove' into Fly.

Figure O90 - Completed stove loosely positioned
Figure O90 - Completed stove loosely positioned

 

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Figure O91 - Completed stove loosely positioned
Figure O91 - Completed stove loosely positioned


Figure O92 - The stove Crocks fit snugly between the Fore mast Bit (Aft) Pt. No 66
Figure O92 - The stove Crocks fit snugly between the Fore mast Bit (Aft) Pt. No 66

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© Lloyd Matthews

Thanks Lloyd, A great looking stove.

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