My day to day work
- is that of consulting in human services (web page), but my spare time is filled with scratchbuilding.
- As a kid my favourite activity was making up plastic kits of ships. I guess my English background instilled a love of the sea and ships. When I left school all those years ago my parents arranged for me to become a fitter and turner. My interest was to be a marine engineer, but this idea became less interesting when I realised I would be traveling the world, working on machinery below the water line. So I became a fitter in an oil refinery, in South Australia, working with mainly British tradesmen. It really was an interesting education.. There were many seriously funny moments amongst that crew, and often complete amazement at skills that they had at their fingertips that were gradually being lost as the world changed. When I first started I was told, ‘go help Hardknackers make nipples.’ I won’t translate that but it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
- When I left I got a job as a welfare officer and after that became a social worker and the trade became a part of my past, however, my love for ships and boats remained, as did my love for the trade. I had a small business making furniture at one stage using old recycled Baltic pine, renovated a house and did panel beating work on numerous cars.
- It was in my 30’s after having a family that I built my
first boat. It was a tug I called ‘Fitzroy,’ and is my current camera boat. Then it was one project after another until I made my first submarine, Jules Verne’s Nautilus. This did not always work perfectly and in fact is now sitting in pride of place over my son’s bar.
- I lived in Cairns a few years ago and while there I turned my hand to building an N gauge railway set. (All fresh water sites for boats had crocs in them). I noticed that the train community was huge, and as I researched things I noted my techniques were from my trade background and were not the same as those being used by the general modelling community. So I decided to video the processes. It's a bit scary, but while there I put this little promotional video together for the railway that I still think is rather funny. Then it all began
- Now everything I do I record on video and put up on the site. There are nuggets all through it for the avid scratch builder, and the feedback I have received has been lovely. I am just one amongst many and I have an eclectic approach to scratch building. I certainly don't call myself an expert, but I can build stuff that works, and I can explain how to do it, so it is a good place to learn and get ideas.
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