Ship modeling is an old craft, that involves building mini ships which can be traced back to the times when water transport was in its early stage. There are many purposes behind ship modeling. Many historical discoveries of ships show that the common purpose of building the boat or ship models were intended for arts, household articles, burial votives, and wooden toys. The models earlier were made using materials like clay, bronze, wood, lead, etc.
Archaeologist have also found some ancient Egyptian boat models in the tombs of royal people. The reason behind this is assumed that the boat were the magical substitutes to the real object which were used by the departed in their lives, and these magical substitutes would be used by the person in the next world. Another known purpose behind ship modeling is that earlier ship builders didn't have much knowledge about mathematics or drafting the ship plans. Hence, they made models which served as shipwright's plans. These models were created as a reference for the ship owners or the shipbuilders. There are many archaeological finds, which help to study the ancient ship building techniques.
Mentioned above was the general information and historical facts on ship and boat building. Here are the tips on ship building for beginners and serious hobbyists.
Tips for Beginners
To build or learn this craft the easiest and simplest way is by purchasing a kit of ship making that allows you to build a small-sized ship with plastic parts. Later on you can buy the kits which have medium difficulty level and wooden body parts. Practice with a couple of kits, till you get a feel of building a model and understanding of the main parts that constitute a ship model.
Advanced Level Tips
There are various model building techniques you can master. The most-used techniques include the plank on solid hull technique which involves carving of a solid hull, and planking of strips of wood which are glued or nailed down later on. The second commonly used technique is the skeleton construction technique, where the frame of the hull is cut in shapes and then assembled on the keel. This is a complex method which is mostly used by experienced professionals. For both the techniques you need skills in woodworking and an eye for detail. To learn more about the steps you can refer to books or online tutorials. There are printable versions of the blueprint of ship models available online, which you can use as a reference to create the individual parts of the model ship, and construct it by gluing or nailing the parts together.
So, start with small-sized ship model projects using starter kits and experiment with different materials. Then you can gradually proceed to the more complex projects and use the sample blueprints to create ship models. You can also paint your mini ship with colors to make it look more like a real ship.