Hanse Kogge, Bremen 1390 – Shipyard Laser Cut Model Kit

Over the holidays, Ages of Sail received a new shipment of kits from the Polish manufacturer of paper ship model and structures kits, Shipyard. Among these were two kits released in 2019. Both are cogs,  sea-going cargo ships that were widely used in medieval Europe from the 12th through the 14th centuries.

Modern cog reconstruction.

Cogs were of lapstraked construction, with a broad and flat-bottomed hull, and commonly built of oak. The carried a single mast mounting a square sail, and were up to about 80 feet in length, with the largest carrying up to 200 tons.

We’ll be looking specifically at Shipyard’s Hanse Kogge kit, which is apparently based on a late 14th century Bremen cog of the Hanseatic League. The league formed as a confedration of trade guilds to promote commerce and mutual protection. It was formed in the late 12th century and grew to dominate Baltic trade for hundreds of years, with the cog beiung the mainstay of trade transportation.

The kit’s box cover is labeled “Ships of the Stötebeker Era”, which suggests it’s part of a series. Another kit in this series is a cog labeled the Wütender Hund Kogge. It appears to be a slightly larger cog with a forecastle structure and a menacing looking wolf’s head on the sail.

I knew nothing of the Stötebeker Era mentioned on the box cover, so I had to look it up (actually, I didn’t know a whole lot about Cogs or the Hanseatic League either). Apparently, Klaus Stötebeker was supposedly the leader of a group of privateers called the Victual Brothers. During a war between Sweden and Denmark, they were hired to fight the Danish and supply the Swedish capital. After the war, they continued to capture merchant ships, but were eventually captured and tried for piracy.


The Hanse Kogge Kit

Shipyard’s Hanse Kogge kit is only available in a laser-cut, boxed kit, unlike many of their other subjects, which are available in a standard paper model at 1/96 scale as well as a larger scale laser-cut model in 1/72 scale.

The kit comes in a large flat box. Inside are three smaller, plain cardboard boxes contain ing paints, brushes, and miscellaneous parts. A large plastic envelopes contains all the laser-cut heavy card stock sheets.

One of the really standout features of this kit is the 52-page, full-color, illustrated instruction booklet.

The booklet is full of photos showing each step of the kit’s construction. Being intended for the international market, there is very little text. What there is, is in English, German, and Polish. But, the photos seem to make each phase of construction pretty clear.


Most of the text is towards the front of the manual, with glue recommendations, and a section on how they obtained a woodgrain-like finish using the acrylic paints included in the kit. They seemed to do a good job with it, but I think it will take some practice before being able to achieve a proper finish.

I haven’t built this kit yet, so I can’t say just how complete the instructions are, but they look really good. And, as you can see, this is a very detailed kit. By all appearances, this is a very well engineered product, and looks like it should be a lot of fun to build.

Other Components

In addition to the instruction booklet, which is really big enough and appears complete enough to call it an instruction manual, there are a three large format sheets of diagrams. Specifically, there is one double-sided sheet with scale drawing of the sail and its details on one side and a short paragraph of text on the history of the ship on the other. Another double-sided sheet and one single sided sheet provide clear rigging and belaying point diagrams. Lines are clearly numbered, so it’s very easy to follow which line gets tied off where.

Miscellaneous parts and items are packed into separate cardboard boxed inside the main kit box. These include a set of paint brushes, two sizes of wire, brass belaying pins,  and parrel beads…

Six bottles of acrylic paints (from my experience, these work really nicely with paper)…

Rigging line, wooden dowels (some things are easier to make from wood on a card model), and six packages of laser-cut blocks, hearts, and deadeyes – some assembly required.


Laser Cut Cardstock Sheets

Finally, what’s a laser-cut card model without sheets of laser-cut heavy card stock?  There are seven large sheets and one smaller sheet in all. Lots of parts there. The sheets are in two different thicknesses. Plus, one large sheet and the small sheet have a glossier finish and are of thinner card stock.

One of the things that’s very intriguing about these laser-cut card models is that the planking is pre-shaped, so there is no need to learn spiling techniques to shape them corrects. This is mostly unique to laser-cut card models, though there are some exceptions, particularly with wooden kits featuring lapstraked hulls, such as viking ships.

In any case, besides these laser-cut sheets, there is one small sheet of black laser-cut card stock for the rudder hinges.

Finally, to complete the model is a pair of colorful, pre-printed flags, as well as a pre-cut, partly printed sail in two parts.

Note that I referred to the sails as partly pre-printed. That’s because they have the outlines of the printed pattern on them, but it looks like you’re required to use the included paints to fill them in. In actually, I don’t think it’s correct to say that they’re laser printed. It looks to me that they are laser-cut with the markings burned into the fabric. Hence, the lack of color.

The Finished Appearance

So, what’s the model look like when it’s all done? I haven’t built it yet, so no pictures from me personally. But, here is a full range of photos from Shipyard.


Building the Model

I’m planning on tackling this kit soon.  Since there is so much photo documentation in the kit instructions, I’ll probably limit blog posts to showing progress and mentioning any hiccups in the build process.

If you want to build your own, the kit is now in stock at Ages of Sail here: https://www.agesofsail.com/ecommerce/hanse-kogge-(-shipyard-1:72-scale).html

Or, you might try your hand at the other cog kit, the Wütender Hund Kogge.

This kit makes for a slightly larger model, so it costs a little more than the Hanse Kogge kit. But, it appears to be at least as nice looking a kit. This one is also available from Ages of Sail here: https://www.agesofsail.com/ecommerce/wutender-hund—kogge-(shipyard-1:72-scale).html

Look for a build log to appear here soon. Ω

H.M. Yacht Chatham by Shaun Au

I don’t know how this slipped past us. But, while cleaning up old emails, we discovered these photos sent to us by customer Shaun Au. The model is an incredibly well done model of H.M. Yacht Chatham built from the Caldercraft kit.

Caldercraft Yacht Chatham by Shaun Au

Clearly, the model was built by a ship modeler of great talent. But, it shows how beautifully one can build a relatively inexpensive wooden ship model kit.

The Yacht Chatham kit is part of Caldercraft’s Nelson’s Navy series, and all but one of the series (HMS Victory) is at a scale of 1:64. That makes this model just under 21″ long and about 18.5″ high.

Caldercraft Yacht Chatham by Shaun Au

The kit does not include sail material, nor does it provide any patterns or rigging materials. This ship modeler had worked out that part himself. Clearly, he’s done a marvelous job too.

Caldercraft Yacht Chatham by Shaun Au

Recreating the sails should not be a difficult process, but if you want to add them yourself, you’ll have to consult additional references, as patterns are not provided with the kit.

For rigging the sails, you might consider the book Rigging Period Fore-And-Aft Craft, by Lennarth Petersson, which includes a section on the cutter rig, which this is. But, again, you’ll need to create your own sail patterns if you want sails.

To build your own HM Yacht Chatham model, find the kit here: https://www.agesofsail.com/ecommerce/caldercraft-ship-kit/nelson-s-navy/caldercraft-chatham.html

The model photos now appear on our Customer Gallery page.

New Shipment of Card Model Kits from Shipyard

Over the holidays, we got in a new shipment of kits from the Polish manufacturer of paper ship model and structures kits, Shipyard.

The shipment replenishes most of our stocks of kits, including the big 1/72 scale laser-cut HMS Mercury and HMS Wolf kits.

The best news, though, is that we are now carrying two new ship model kits from Shipyard. These are two 1/72 scale laser-cut kits of Cogs of medieval Europe. These ships were clinker-built vessels with a single mast and a single square sail.

We will have these kits listed as soon as get caught up from the holidays. Stay tuned for more announcements about these two exciting new kits. Ω


Nicely Executed Model of Caldercraft’s HMS Sherbourne

We recently found a beautiful model of HMS Sherbourne built by ship modeler Jon Gordon. The 1/64-scale model of the late 18th-century, 10-gun cutter was built from a Caldercraft kit, with modifications made.

HMS Sherbourne was designed by Sir Thomas Slade, who also designed HMS Victory, and was launched in December of 1763 for use against smugglers in the English Channel.

Photo copyright Jon Gordon, used with permission.

The kit is part of Caldercraft’s “Nelson’s Navy” series, which are almost all 1/64-scale kits.

Photo copyright Jon Gordon, used with permission.

There are a lot more photos of Mr. Gordon’s model on The NRG’s Model Ship World, and you can see them here: https://modelshipworld.com/gallery/album/1981-hm-cutter-sherbourne-by-edwardkenway/

For those interested in building their own model of the Sherbourne, we have the kit available at Ages of Sail for only $129. Ω


Occre Beagle (and Terror) Shipment Update

[Update: 5/2/19 The Kits are HERE!]

While I’m sorry to say that the new HMS Beagle kits have not yet arrived, they are definitely coming soon. We just found out there was some kind of overload on FedEx’s end with a shortage of warehousing space, which delayed transit. But, they should be back on route to us shortly.

On the positive side, if you haven’t had a chance to pre-order your OcCre HMS Beagle kit with the pre-order discount yet, there is still time. You can get your kit for only $188.10. This kit looks very good and we expect it to be very popular. But, don’t worry, we ordered plenty, so we don’t expect to run out any time soon.

And, if you’re interested in the very popular HMS Terror kit, sadly, we just sold the last of our stock today. Fear not, there are more coming in the OcCre shipment along with the new HMS Beagle kits.

We’ll post an announcement as soon as the shipment is in. So, stay tuned…


HMS Terror Kits – Back in Stock, Price Increase, Special Discount

OcCre’s wooden model kit of the arctic exploration ship HMS Terror is back in stock at Ages of Sail!

Click Here to Buy Your HMS Terror Kit

The bad news is that the manufacturer increased the price of the kit, so our full retail price is now $209. However, the good news is that this is still an incredible value for a kit of this quality and detail. Also, to help out, we’re offering a special limited time pricing of only $188.10.

Click Here to Buy Your HMS Terror Kit


The real ship and the Franklin Expedition of which Terror was a part is the subject of the AMC series The Terror. Need some inspiration? Check out these Youtube clips:

The 1/65-scale kit is based on the research and drawings developed by ship modeler Mathew Betts. You can read about his work, as well as his involvement in the TV series, on his blog at: https://buildingterror.blogspot.com

Still not sure if you want to buy this kit? Check out the excellent kit review on Model Ship World: https://modelshipworld.com/topic/18774-165-hms-terror-occre/

So, we just put the kits back in stock on our website and they’ve already started selling! Get yours at this special pricing while it lasts.

Click Here to Buy Your HMS Terror Kit

Special Savings on Amati’s Hunter Q-Ship

Ages of Sail is offering big discount pricing on Amati’s Hunter Q-Ship. Now $40 off the already low price of $139.99, making this high quality kit only $99.99. Order while supplies last!

Order the Q-Ship “Hunter” Kit

Q-Ship “Hunter”

This is a wooden model of a typical Q-Ship used in WWI and WWII in an effort to lure German submarines to attack them. Ships like this were equipped with deck guns that were disguised or hidden, making the vessel look like a helpless merchantman. When a U-boat closed in, hungry for the kill, the Q-Ship would quickly reveal it’s armament and attack.

Amati’s kit is well detailed with lots of photo-etched brass parts, as well as other wood and cast metal fittings. The hull is of plank-on-bulkhead construction with

This kit features a lot of etched brass parts and hidden armament under removable covers. A very unique model. You can buy the kit separately or as part of a combo set that includes tools, glue, and a book on ship modeling.

Order Combo Set #5

(Note that we’re waiting for a shipment of tool sets for the combo set)

Check out these photos of a model built by a shipmodeler for Amati.

Up to the challenge? Order yours and make sure to send us photos of your completed model!

Order the Q-Ship “Hunter” Kit


Terror Returns to Ages of Sail!

No, it’s not a Halloween headline – Our latest OcCre shipment just came in, and one of more popular kits, HMS Terror, is now back in stock.

We sell this kit in two forms, the basic kit, which sells for only $149, and the Deluxe Combo Set, which sells for $299.

The Deluxe Combo Set includes the kit, but also a plank bender, the classic ship modeling book “Ship Modeling Simplified”, the ModelCraft 15-piece Craft and Model Tool Set, Plank Bender, Razor Saw, Nailing Tool, glues and more…

OcCre’s HMS Terror is a 1/65-scale wooden model ship kit that measures just over 26″ long and just under 20″ tall, and is based on the plans by ship modeler Matthew Betts.

HMS Terror is the same ship of the Franklin expedition featured in the A&E television series THE TERROR.

This combo set, or even just the kit by itself, makes a wonderful gift. Buy your’s here at the all new Ages of Sail online shop: https://www.agesofsail.com/ecommerce/occre-hms-terror,-deluxe-combo-set–oc12004dcs.html


OcCre’s Istanbul Tram – An Out of the Box Review

Chalk up another great kit review from The NRG’s Model Ship World site. This time, it’s not a ship model kit, but one of the many beautifully crafted Tram/Train kits produced by the Spanish company Ocio Creativo, otherwise known as OcCre.

OcCre has produced several very nice steam engine and tram kits for years. One of their more recent releases is the Istanbul tram.

This beautiful 1:24-scale (1/2″=1′) kit is available at Ages of Sail for only $149, and measures just under 15″ long and just under 9″ high. It’s a very detailed model a tram of the Tramway Company of Istanbul. Get your’s here at Ages of Sail: https://www.agesofsail.com/ecommerce/istanbul-tram—occre-53010.html

For a complete look at the kit’s components, check out the full review here on Model Ship World: https://modelshipworld.com/index.php?/topic/19105-124-istanbul-tram-occre/&tab=comments#comment-586120

If you want to add some life to your Istanbul Tram model, consider adding the Istanbul Tram Diorama, which makes a perfect display base for your tram model. This diorama kit is also available at Ages of Sail here: https://www.agesofsail.com/ecommerce/istanbul-tram-diorama—occre-53010d.html


OcCre has many different tram kits available. See them all here at Ages of Sail: https://www.agesofsail.com/ecommerce/occre/trams.html


Guillows Wooden Airplane Kits Now Available

No, these aren’t ship models. But, sometimes you want to take a break from your ship model project to build something different. So, we’re now stocking balsa airplane kits from the classic Guillows brand. We’ve got 19 different kits to choose from, from the simple to build, rubber band powered Cadet kit, to the big 1:28-scale Flying Fortress bomber with it’s 45″ wing span!

Most of the kits we carry are designed for free flight or U-Control using small engines or can be built rubber band powered. We also have a couple kits designed for display only, such as the Catalina PBY or the B-24D Liberator bomber.

But, of course, any of these kits can be built for display only. Also, they can be built as the completed aircraft or with their internal structure displayed. Build yours now!

Check them out at Ages of Sail