Scratch Build With John

Whether you are an experienced scratch builder or someone just starting out in the hobby, this site has options for your specific level of expertise.  It provides much of what you need to get into scratch building, helping you build projects from start to finish.  

It is not so much about any one hobby; it is about the process. I like to build everything I make from the ground up, using ordinary and cheap materials while taking enormous pride in what I do.  That is why I have so much on here, including trains, submarines, scenery and mountain ranges, boats, pumps, propellers, rustic villages in outback Australia, moving cameras on a self-directing camera boats, automatic depth keeping on a submarine using arduino, and a gun on the front of a little corvette that squirts water with enormous precision and effect.  

With the material on these pages, you will learn to hone your scratch building skills by developing your own personal building style. I would never ask anyone to simply "copy" me. Instead, my site gives you the skills necessary to build what YOU want.

How does it work?

There is a ton of free stuff on here but to see it all you will need to be a member.  Membership will give access to o my extensive library of over 400 videos.  I discuss membership here.

What do people have to say about Scratch Build With John?

Check out these reviews below.  All were spontaneous.  I have lots more from the my train site, but they are a bit old now and less relevant to boats.

Hello mate ,

My name is Marius Petcu age 52 , born and living in Bucharest , Romania .

I have more than 1 & 1/2 years since I am watching Your videos and frankly "I blame YOU" for inspire me to start doing some small exercise with Submarines scratch build & and more recently with Arduino .
You have a Special way to explain things , not to fast not to slow / not using words from Technical Dictionary in a couple of words : is a Joy to watch those Video tutorials .
Thank You for that and Keep doing it !.

Anyway , I was all ways fascinated about Boats Modeling in general and Submarines in particular but because the life wasn't to kind with me when I was Young "She" decided to offer me a chance now at 52 .
So as knowledge in this domain I am like "a new born baby" and I need to learn a huge amount of information in a short period of time .
That's way I dare to ask some advice from time to time and I need Your help to guide me where to start looking for some information regarding Arduino , maybe condensed in a couple of places .
I made some small exercise .
I am very skilled , I a have a wide range of knowledge - as electrician - my main domain / locksmith / wood & metal working and many others .
I told You those guest to realize that we can talk on a professional level about Everything but Not about Arduino .

Thank You for Your time ,
Best Regards

MARIUS aka "profesorul" on every forum of Modeling

Marius Petcu

Hi John, hope things are well. I have been savouring your videos. Watching what you do and thinking, that's a good idea, or I can do that. I am reinvigorated and have re-looked at my models with fresh eyes. THAT'S what I’d hoped they would do. Anyway, I will take photos as I progress and send if you don’t mind.


As a former submariner and now an engineer with a fondness for history, RC subs, and robotics I've got to say I love this.


wonderful work, sir! David (Concerning the 'instructables' video)

David Merriman

Just superb! And you are so right, scratch building just satisfies the soul.