Emhar ‘Gokstad’ Build – Part I

I finally managed to take the model from the box, detach the pieces from the sprues and get building. On the bright side of it I am learning a lot about the shape and design of the Viking longship, and a fair bit about model making as well; combing archives and forums every now and then for help.

The downside is the space that a project like this takes up; my study is perfect for painting/drawing but model making has taken up so much valuable space, I have the plans taped up and bits and pieces all over the place, some being painted, some waiting to be glued and others just generally consuming space.

Anyway, let’s get straight to the photographs and the progress so far –

The first stage was simple, I just had to glue the two half pieces together to form the whole, after I had detached them from the sprue and given them a light sanding where the rough detachment points were. I actually almost lost the dragon head when detaching as the bow and stern pieces can be removed from this model if preferred and as would have been the case for sailing at sea for the Vikings.

I started laying in the first coat of paint on the ship and the decking; this was the first layer of about 10 or 15 as I kept playing about with techniques and colours before I got to  a stage I was happy with.

JGlover Art - Emhar Gokstad Viking Long Ship Build 7

I wasn’t keen on the vacuum formed plastic sail that came with the kit so after turning to the genius and expert model makers that lurk in the many forums of the web; I stumbled across a few ideas and implemented them for the sail.

I basically used some linen rags dipped in a diluted pva solution and draped it over the plastic sail, left it to dry and voila! I have been left with a linen sail for the ship. It’s rough and it’s rugged, but the Viking sails I’m sure would have had a roughness to them as long as they were functional.

The current stage I’m at is shown above, I have also painted the mast and yard arm but I have now hit a wall as I’m at the point of rigging and I really don’t have a clue about how to do it. I have been trawling the net to find information on how to rig a Viking longship and there isn’t much information out there.

I understand the basic concept of which line connects to what point to a degree but what knots to tie and how to connect the yard arm to the mast with rigging line alone is beyond me.

Once I’ve figured it all out I’ll be back with another update on this build.

Until next time, farewell!

JGlover

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