Draft scales

Manual for Draft scales in PDF to download HERE

Draft scales on ships are used to quickly see how deep in the water the bottom of the ship is. Lightly loaded, the ship floats higher and heavily loaded deeper.  For example, if the water surface is at mark XX, the bottom of the ship is 20 feet beneath the surface. 

In the past centuries, Roman numerals have always been used for this purpose. The number and a the gap have every time height one half of foot. In this way, was dive of ship detected exactly with a one half of the foot.

How to use a decal - Draft scales are made as a classic decal. This means that it is a thin membrane placed on paper with a special substrate. To move the decals to the desired location, it is necessary to immerse thedecal in lukewarm water. You have to wait a while. The decal firstly rolls up and then unrolls again. At that moment, a thin membrane of decals is ready to slide easily on the surface of the substrate. Carefully pull it down, for example, using the tip of a skewer and a dampened brush to the designated place that you have moistened beforehand. Be careful that the decal membrane does not shrink or even tear. For this reason, each scale is on the sheet twice. Then use the tip of a skewer and a damp brush on a damp surface to fit the decal to the desired location. Hold the decal with a tip of a skewer  and use a damp brush to push bubbles out from under the decal. Finally, allow the decal to dry. The easy procedure on YouTube is HERE

The HiSModel decal is universal to the 1/96 Cutty Sark and Thermopylae from Revell, the 1/100 HMS Victory from Heller, or any other ship of this period in 1/100 scale.

For Cutty Sark and Thermopylae, cut the decals so the bottom number is X and the top number is XXII.  The waterline of the ship is between XX and XXI.  See photo of the actual ship for reference as to correct placement of the decals.

HMS Victory is a bigger, heavier ship, so the decal should be cut with the bottom number X and the top number XXV.  The waterline is at Bow in upper edge of XXII.  And on a Stern is waterline in upper edge of XXIII. Again, see photos of the real ship for reference as to placement of the scales.

USS Constitution is a bigger, heavier ship, too. So the decal should be cut in a Bow with the bottom number X and the top number XXIV.  The waterline is at upper edge of XXI.  On a Stern is need decal cut with the bottom number X and the top number XXV.  The waterline is at below edge of XXIII. 

CSS Alabama and USS Kearsarge from Revell at 1:96 scale are very similar in size. Here is the range of dive scales VIII to XVIII used, with the water line on the XVI digits, based on the boat plans in Andrew Bowcock's CSS Alabama.

We at HiSmodel wish you great success and a beautiful ship model!


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