Scaled Ship Replicas


Manned Model Ships

Apr 01, 2012: Little Brigs Bob Allen & Caroline Allen
Jan 15, 2012: brigantine Vision
Jan 15, 2012: ship Red, White and Blue


If you want to have an idea of the workings of a long-gone sailing ship, you need to build a full-size replica, and quite a number of those have been made, sometimes funded by the movie industry (see large full-size replica catalog). Another way is to build functional radio-controlled models, of various degrees of complexity (see RC square-rigger catalog).

There is actually a space in-between, for scaled-down replicas that are big enough to carry people. The same phenomenon happened for radio-controlled model airplanes, from quarter-scale to half-scale and up. At some point someone was bold enough to jump in the model, rip out the radio controls, and directly fly the model. This actually led to a whole class of aircraft called 'ultralights". It would be nice if the same happened for ships.

Name Rig Type Scale LOA LWL Breadth Sail Location
Adventure Brig 10' 7'10" BC, CAN
Barbados Ship WA, USA
Belleisle Ship 1:13 UK
Bob Allen Brig 42' 30' 9' 670" Southampton UK
Bounty Ship AUS & USA
Caroline Allen see Bob Allen
Constitution Ship USA
Endeavour Bark 4:10 13.37 m 12.16 m 4.08 m Whitby, UK
Federalist Ship 22' 15' 5' 132" Maryland, USA
Golden Hind Ship UK
Isobel III Brig 18' 16' USA
Justinian Ship 5 m Ukraine
Kent Ship 44' GB
Leon Brigantine 1:8 21' 14' 5' 130" New Jersey, USA
Libellule in construction 11'4" 4'11" IL, USA
Liberté see Adventure
Lion Topsail Schooner 1:4 25' Maryland, USA
Preussen 5-masted ship Potsdam, D
Red White, and Blue Ship 26' 6'1" NY, USA
Royal Louise Ship 26 m 15,43 m 4,36 m 160 m˛ Potsdam, D
Sae Wylfing 1-mast 1:2 45' 7' Colchester, UK
Spirit 2 Double tops'l schooner 16' USA
Three Sisters Ship 1:5.7 4 m Ukraine
unknown Ship USA
Viking ship 1-mast 1:2 BC, CAN
Vision Brigantine 15'10" 4'6" NY, USA

This page lists scaled replicas of square-rigged ships. Please let me know of any additions/corrections to be made.

  • Adventure, Liberté (1900 / 2005, 2007)

    Two traditional brigs - hull only 8 foot long - built by Brian Nix in British Columbia.

    Liberte1.jpg LiberteDaggerBoard.jpg The hull is custom built from Martens Goosens D4 dinghy plans, with daggerboard.

    LiberteTops.jpg LiberteDeadEyes.jpg LiberteYardArm.jpg Standing rigging with deadeyes and fully articualted yardarm.

    AdventureAndSwifty.jpg AdventureAndAriel.jpg Adventure in harbor trials, then attempting to fight Ariel.

    AdventureLiberte1.jpg AdventureLiberte2.jpg Sails are controlled by 4 sheets and 2 braces; fore and main yards are linked in parallel.

    AdventureAftDeck.jpg LiberteWith3Kids.jpg What a good family pretext to dress up and fire large bore cannons...

  • HMS Barbados (Ariel?) (1803 / c.2000)

    A 20-gun sloop designed and built by Wayne Tedder and Archie Malloy, maybe "Barbadoes".

    Barbados.jpg Single-handling is indeed possible (photo by John Kohnen).

  • HMS Belleisle (1795 / 2005)

    Typical 74-gun third-rate ship, originally Le Formidable.

    Belleisle_01.jpg Starting with a 50-year old hull; notice cut-out on bow.

    Belleisle_20.jpg Team effort for the rigging

    Belleisle_DSC_0060.jpg Really difficult not to be a happy crew.

    Belleisle_DSC_0120.jpg Note post-1800 modification of spritsail to spanker.

    Belleisle_IMG_7778.jpg Furling upper sails.

    Belleisle_DSC_0409.jpg Now, which lines to pull to get out of this?

    Belleisle_DSC_0153.jpg With the crew crouched down for the picture.

  • HMS Bounty (1784 / c.2000)

    There are two half-scale models of this small ship:
    - One in Sydney, used in movie with Mel Gibson,
    - One on a lake in Iowa....
    Any sailing pictures and info welcome!

  • Bob Allen (c.1900 / c.2003) & Caroline Allen (c.1900 / c.2009)

    Two brigs out of Southampton for training cadets, run by the Little Brig Sailing Trust non-profit organization.

    LittleBrig_01_Cavalier_SailPlan.jpg LittleBrig_02_SideView.jpg Designed by the famous Scottich Naval Architect Colin Mudie

    LittleBrig_03_LowTide.jpg Ship rests on twin keels at low tide, for "volunteers" to clean the hull...

    LittleBrig_11.jpg LittleBrig_12.jpg LittleBrig_13.jpg LittleBrig_14.jpg LittleBrig_15.jpg LittleBrig_16.jpg LittleBrig_17.jpg LittleBrig_18.jpg On port tack

    LittleBrig_21.jpg LittleBrig_22.jpg LittleBrig_23.jpg On starboard tack

    LittleBrig_31.jpg No lower sails for maneuvering in tight corners

    modelboatmayhem_Portsmouth_80.jpg Spotted by Martin Davis from a ferry boat between Portsmouth and Le Havre; no wind, no waves, no sun, no warmth, but still fun!

  • USS Constitution Jr (1797 / 1932)

    Built by James Callan (Washington DC) for the Sea Scouts

    ConstitutionJr_BoysLife_1932_9_p32.jpg Launch day, with white uniforms (Boys Life, Sep. 1932)

    ConstitutionJr_PopSci_1938_5_p37.jpg Underway under reduced sails (Popular Science, May 1938)

  • Endeavour (1768 / 2002)

    Expedition ship of Captain James Cook, originally a collier.

    Endeavours_Whitby.jpg Full-scale and 40%-scale ships side by side (

    Endeavour_FredBrunskill.jpg Returning to Whitby harbor (Fred Brunskill)

    Note: This ship is for sale (2010) for 155,000 Pounds Sterling!

  • Federalist (1788 / 1988)

    Built by Allen Rawl for the bicentennial of Maryland joining the US, on a design by Melbourne Smith.

    Federalist_SeaTrialsStern.jpg Federalist_GeraldTodd.jpg First sea trials (photos courtesy Allen Rawl and Gerald Todd).

    MarylandFederalist_d013131a.gif Hard to say that the hull is only 15 feet long, with crew hiding.

    Federalist_State.jpg Seven sails because 7th state to ratify (photo by Lauren / JHU).

    Md07022_TomForst.jpg Underwater hull appears to scale, except for larger rudder (photo Tom Forst).

  • Golden Hind (1577 / c.1936) Drake's ship mini-replica entering Looe harbor 21st July 1936 (Copyrighted Photo by Norman Smith / Fox Photos / Getty Images).

    GoldenHind_PopSci_1938_5_p37.jpg Golden Hinde firing its guns (Popular Science, May 1938)

    Note: There are several full-size replicas of this famous ship.

  • Isobel III (c.1865 / c.1935)

    Mini-brig owned and sailed by Capt. Carl von Zielinski of Staten Island, NY. This ship won the Ann McKim Trophy during one of the annual Miles River Regatta, St Michaels (MD).

    IsobelIII_6245b.jpg IsobelIII_6245d.jpg Silver prints by Percy Loomis Sperr (1890-1964) for sale at Vintage Works, Ltd.

    IsobelIII_6245c.jpg IsobelIII_6245a.jpg The square stern from the original hull has been rounded up later; the site is New York harbor.

    IsobelIII_PopSci_1938_05_p36.jpg IsobelIII_PopSci_1938_05_p36_macaron.jpg The disk on the sail is the symbol of the famous Black Ball Line (Popular Science, May 1938)

    IsobelIII_Life_1938_09_19_p67.jpg Probably in Maryland during races with a similar mini-brigantine named Nippy (Life, 19 Sep 1938)

  • HMS Justinian (1786 / c.1995)

    74-gun ship in Martin Saville (2000) "Hornblower Ships" (ISBN 0-85177-783-X)
    Fictional ship based on third-rate ship Le Superbe.

    Justinian.jpg Preparing for an another epic movie battle.

  • HMS Kent (1762 / c.1925)

    74-gun ship

    HMSKent1760_RickF.jpg from Chatham Navy Week programme for 1933 via Rick F (

  • Leon (1880 / 2006)

    "Little Leon" built by Doug McKenzie on plans by Harold Underhill for the Norwegian-built brigantine.

    LittleLeon_sail-0a-64.jpg The masts fold neatly for trailering.

    LittleLeon_sail-5-64.jpg Four aboard and still not reaching lully loaded waterlines.

    LittleLeon_2009sails-7.jpg Detail of the simplified controls of the upper yards.

    LittleLeon_2009sails-11.jpg Venturing into more open waters.

    YouTube clip showing early sailing trials with 9 of the 14 sails set.

  • Libellule (c.1780 / c.2012)

    In construction in Champaign, Illinois.

  • Lion (c.1810 / c.1970)

    Topsail schooner later an inspiration for the ill-fated Pride of Baltimore.

    SchoonerLion.jpg Very scale-like hull on its trailer.

  • Preussen (1902 / c.1935)

    Built by the students of the Potsdam Boat Construction School

    PreussenHindenburg_PopSci_1938_5_p36.jpg Next to the Hindenburg (Popular Science, May 1938)

  • Red, White, and Blue (1865 / 1865)

    Captains J.M. Hudson and F.E. Fitch successfully crossed the Atlantic on a galvanized steel (2 mm thick!) Ingersoll lifeboat rigged as a 3-masted ship. The comprehensive story of this adventure can be found in Smallest Ship that Ever Crossed the Atlantic Ocean; The LOG of the Ship-Rigger Ingersoll Metallic Life-Boat "Red, White and Blue", Across the Atlantic Ocean and English Channel. New York, Bunce & Co, 1870. (Google-Books).

    RedWhiteBlue_Livbaaten1865KAARE.jpg from

    RedWhiteBlue_IllLondNews_1866_p251.jpg from the Illustrated London News, 1866

  • Royal Louise (1832 / 1999)

    Small frigate from Prussia, but big replica.

    RoyalLouise_vorgeschirr.jpg At quay; looks totally accurate

    RoyalLouise_salutschuss.jpg Saluting with guns

    RoyalLouise_kaiserwetter.jpg Fabulous day out

  • Sć Wylfing (c.625 / c.1990)

    Pre-viking ship based on the find of Sutton Hoo ship burial.

    SaeWylfing1.jpg Not casting off, then? (photo by Sam Newton).

    SaeWylfing2.jpg Swiftly beating the wind (photo by Sam Newton).

  • Spirit 2 (c.1800 / c.1980)

    Probably based on the double-topsail schooner Enterprize; no details found

    Spirit2_16minischooner.jpg Spirit2 on its trailer.

  • Three Sisters (1805 / c.1995)

    One of the 3 frigates in Martin Saville (2000) "Hornblower Ships" (ISBN 0-85177-783-X)
    Construction based on plans by Steel / McGregor, A.F. Chapman, and of HMS Pandora.

    ThreeSisters.jpg The frigate sailing on an infinity pool overlooking the Black Sea.

  • unknown ship (c.1800 / c.2005)

    Sailed once together with the schooner "Bill Of Rights"; any details welcome...

    ukn_BoR_2005_IMGP2276.jpg Hull appears to be custom built, with pole masts and Bentick booms.

  • Viking ship (c.1000 / 2001)

    Midsummer fest in Burnaby, BC, Canada.

    VikingArt_7.jpg Rolling on logs like the real one a millenium ago.

    VikingArt_3.jpg The yard in two parts appears to be flimsy.

  • Vision (1864 / 1864)

    The Vision was a wooden brigantine (hermaphrodite brig) only 15 feet long. Aboard Vision, Rhode Island Captain John C. Donovan and his dog Toby left New York for Liverpool on June 26, 1864.

    Vision_HarpersWeekly_1864_7_9_445.jpg Leaving New York (Harpers Weekly July 9, 1864)

    The "New York Times" of July 6, 1864 reports her putting into Provincetown, Cape Cod, with a leak due to a defect in the caulking of about two feet in length, which was repaired.

    The "Ottowa Citizen" of May 9, 1866 reports "At mid-Atlantic, when she accomplished about half the voyage, the 'Vision' was spoken [SS Peruvian, 45°10'N 33°W, July 20], but since that time nothing has been heard of her. A Newfoundland paper received in Plymouth, mentions that an empty barrel, with the name 'Vision' painted on it, has been picked up between the coast of Africa and South America. There was little doubt that this belonged to the boat above referred to, whose hazardous voyage has, it is feared, ended in fatal disaster."


    Belleisle_39c.jpg The Belleisle amongst friends and foes. Scaled replicas are spreading, at least in the UK!

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