David Nelson's Web Site






For some time I have been interested in building a ship model in a bottle and also one in a light bulb.   A new member of our modelling club does these and looking at his work inspired me to give it a shot.

CGS Concretia


HMS Erebus in a light bulb

May 13, 2015

Over the past couple of months I have been working on a model of the HMS Erebus from the Franklin Expedition
into the Northwest Passage in 1845.  It will be placed in a light bulb when finished.

Building a model this small is certainly a challenge because of the size of the parts.  It gives me a new respect for
model builders who do this on a regular basis.

The hull and deck fittings are now complete but much work is yet to be done.

This is the light bulb the model will call home.  The "sea" is made of glazing putty and coloured with acrylic paint. 
The areas down each side will have white putty placed on them to simulate ice flows thus giving the look if the ship
surrounded by ice.

Here we see the hull and fittings complete to this point..  Across the top of the image are the tree sections of each
of the tree masts along with the tops, crosstrees/trestle trees and mast caps that will join the mast sections together. 
Off of the bow is the bow sprit.  Behind the hull are two chicken coops and, in the center, the head.  Below the hull,
from left to right, are deck fittings:  Windless, galley vent pipe, grating, grating, hatch, bilge pumps, companionway, 
skylight, capstan, skylight, wheel, tiller.

The 6" ruler across the bottom give a scale.


July 9, 2019

The model, including the rigging, is now complete.  The next step is to get it into the light build.  I am sure this will
happen without any problems!!!

View of the completed model.  The masts are designed so they can lay down towards the
stern to allow them to fit through the neck of the bulb.  The yards are also designed so
they can rotate and fit into the bulb's neck.

All of the rigging lines extend well out from the bow so that they come out of the neck of
the bulb and will then be used to stand the masts erect and align the yards.  This will
happen after the hull is glued into the sea in the bulb.

Once the masts and yards are in their proper position and aligned they will be glued in
place and the excess cut off.  This will be done through the neck of the bulb using a variety
of long tools.


August 20, 2019

Now the model is in the bulb and glued in place.  The lines coming out of the neck are
extensions of the stays, lifts and braces on the model.  They are used to erect the masts
and align the yards.

This image is of the completed model.  The masts and yards have been positioned, the
extensions of the lines have been glued in place, cut off and removed.  The socket has
been glued in place .