Nina was known to be Christopher Columbus's favourite of his three ships. Couldn't resist buying this old 1992 Revell plastic kit when it appeared on ebay. The photograph at the early stage of the build is to show the small size of the hull.
Thank you, Ron, Rick, Chris and Andrew. It has been many years since I last built a sailing ship and the build took much longer than anticipated. What particularly attracted me to the Nina was the lateen rig. This wasn't always the rig, sometimes she would carry the more normal square rig and for a time only two masts. Originally named Santa Clara, she must have seen a number of alterations throughout her life.
Revell once sold Christopher Columbus's two other ships, the Pinta and Santa Maria at the same 1:90 scale.
Thanks Richard, Nina finished up a really good size. For a while, Revell sold all three ships as a set, which would mean a lot of building time. Zvezda also make a Nina at 1:100 scale and Heller at the slightly larger 1:75 scale.
Full sized replicas of both the Nina and Pinta were built in Brazil, where these traditional building skills are still carried out. Sanger Ships LLC, own the replica's and offer trips etc from different harbours, ports etc along the American coast. The replica Nina sail rig is with both square and lateen sails. If I win the lottery, a trip to the States for a sail on one of these ships will be a must do!
After completion of the kit, I purposely left off a long flag from the rear and four handrail mounted swivel canons. No other kits or builds indicated these were fitted, but with further research there were never any plans or drawings made of the ship, all the information is just a best guess. Swivel canons were in use in 1492 so Revell could have been right with including them in the kit. Attached are two photographs showing the additional flag and swivel canons. Also attached is a side view.
It has been a long time since I last built a sailing ship and I must say this one was an absolute joy to build. There were a few minor problems, the worst being the shortage of rigging blocks supplied. In the kit, there were only enough for the deadeyes at the end of the shrouds and the twelve needed for the rigging had to be filed and drilled out of sprue.
Thank you Paul and Ron.
Yes, the sails can be the 'make or break' of a sailing ship model. With some kits the sails seem too heavy and just don't look right. With these they seemed ok. Sometimes after many hours work on a sailing ship, the wrong look to the sails can ruin the effect. Some builders prefer to leave them off altogether and some make furled sails out of household kitchen paper.
At the time this kit was manufactured, Revell were in some kind of business tie-up with Monogram and were based in Illinois USA, their kits being manufactured in Korea.