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top prev next bottom Bluenose/Bluenose II Schooner - 0 hours - Can$ 0.00 - Advanced

This project is just in the early stages, and this web page is still being build.

Before starting with the project it is important to give a summary of the history of the Bluenose and Bluenose II. It will also illustrate our decisions on scope and scale of our project.


Bluenose was a fishing and racing schooner. She was designed by William J. Roué of Halifax, and built at the shipyard of Richard W. Smith & George A. Rhuland in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada. The building was overseen by shipwright John Rhuland. The Bluenose was launched on March 26th, 1921.

Fishing was done over the banks in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Nova Scotia. The Bluenose was a fine fishing schooner, holding the record for largest single catch ever landed in Lunenburg. However, what made her famous was as a racer for the International Fishermen's Trophy. Under her skipper, Captain Angus J. Walters, she won undying fame for Nova Scotia and Canada. During World War II she entered the West Indies trade, where her life ended when she broke her back on a coral reef off the coast of Haiti in January 1946.

Nova Scotians are called Bluenosers, and that is where the schooner got its name.

Bluenose 1/4"=1' Scale Model Ship Plans (Eisnor Blueprints)

Philip F. Eisnor's model ship blueprints (7 sheets) of the Bluenose Schooner may be perhaps the most accurate representation of the Bluenose as she was in 1921 when she was launched and ready for the fishing grounds. Eisnor spent many years in researching this project. Much of his time was spent in the Nova Scotia archives and talking with people in the Lunenburg area who sailed on the Bluenose along with some of the shipbuilders who were responsible for building her.

sheet, drawing, datetitlescalecomments
sheet 1, SC-020, May 1990Hull Lines1/4" = 1'
sheet 2, SC-020-1, May 1990General Arrangement1/4" = 1'
sheet 3, SC-020-2, May 1990Inside Bullwarks & Profile Deck Equipment1/4" = 1'
sheet 4, SC-020-3, May 1990Masting Details1/4" = 1'
sheet 5, SC-020-4, May 1990Rigging & Sail Plan1/8" = 1'
sheet 6, SC-020-5, Mar 2007Hull Framing1/4" = 1'
sheet 7, SC-020-6, Mar 2007Hull Frames1/4" = 1'

PLUS -- The scale 1/4"=1' (1:48) drawings result in a nice size model of 39.5"/100cm long, 6.6"/16.5cm wide and 35"/89cm high (keel to top of main mast). Drawing measurements taken from the drawing in inch or cm can be used straightaway to measure the model wood. Except the Rigging & Sail Plan (sheet5) where measurements have to be multiplied by 2.

MINUS -- The drawings have no written measurements on it. It would be nice to be able to compare a taken measurement against the written measurement. Drawings do have errors sometimes!

Bluenose II

Bluenose II was launched at Lunenburg on July 24th 1963, built to original plans and by some of the same workers at Smith and Rhuland. Shipwright John Rhuland oversaw the building of the Bluenose II. The original captain of Bluenose, Angus J. Walters, was consulted on the replica's design. The replica was built for Oland Brewery for roughly $300,000 (1963 Canadian dollars) as a marketing tool for their Schooner Lager beer brand. The Bluenose II was the last living example of the great two-masted schooners, and a perfect sailing replica of the original Bluenose.

On September 7th, 1971, the Bluenose II was sold to the goverment of Nova Scotia for the sum of $1.00. After several years the province gave possession of the ship to the "Bluenose II Preservation Trust". The trust's mandate was to restore the aging schooner to full operational status and continue to operate her for the people of Nova Scotia. In 1994-95 the ship had its first restoration, but only a small amount of the $2.3 million allocated for the schooner have been used for restoration works. It was a well known scandal. The trust maintained and operated Bluenose II until March 31st, 2005, when the government of Nova Scotia placed the vessel under the management of the Lunenburg Marine Museum Society at the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic.

In July 2010, the Nova Scotia government awarded a $12.5 million contract for the restoration of Bluenose II to a consortium of three Nova Scotia shipyards. When the ship was finally relaunched on September 6th, 2013, after major delays, the final retro fit cost was closer to 16 million dollars for the Nova Scotian Government only.

This restoration was not without controversy because sources stated the restoration was not intended to create an authentic replica of the original Bluenose and that the builders would not be using the plans. The original schooner was largely scrapped and the schooner was built from keel up with new materials. Some equipment and sections of the old schooner were retained, but the schooner is essentially a new vessel. This has led Joan Roué, a descendant of the original Bluenose's designer William J. Roué and current rights-holder of the design, to question whether this should even be considered the same ship.

In the summer of 2016, Bluenose II renovations were finally completed, and it serves now as a tourist vessel.

Bluenose II, Measured Drawings (Jenson Book)

During the years that the Oland family sailed and operated the Bluenose II, after building her in 1963 for the people of Nova Scotia and Canada, they got often questions about her dimensions, hull, sail plan and rigging. In 1970 Don J. Oland approached the noted marine artist and historic illustrator, Commander L.B. Jenson, RCN (Ret'd) and asked him if he would undertake the task of producing the meausred drawings while the Bluenose II was still a fully rigged and working schooner. After 3½ years Jenson's work was completed and resulted in the limited edition (1,000 copies) of "Bluenose II, The Last of the Tall Schooners, measured drawings", by L. B. Jenson, 1975, Open Library OL18833343M, 32 pages.

Mr. Jenson's interest was developed and he wanted to do much more; how the Bluenose II wooden schooner was constructed, the terminology used, the evolution of the development of the schooner under sail until the diesel engines took over, and he wanted to record how the fishing trade was carried out during the days of sail. For the bigger project Mr Jenson and Mr. Oland formed a partnership which resulted in the book "Bluenose II, Saga of the Great Fishing Schooners, measured drawings", by L. B. Jenson, 1994, ISBN 1-55109-063-5. 140 pages.

PLUS -- Great place to read up on the history of Bluenose, Bluenose II, and fishery schooners in general. Superb detailed drawings that are very useful to complete the model with realism and finesse.

MINUS -- The measured drawings in Appendix I are nice, but have several disadvantages too.
The measurements are in real life feet and need to be converted into scale model measurements. NOTE: feet divided by 4 gives the model measurement in inches. Several measurements are blurred and simply not readable, event under a lit magnifying glass.
The drawings have an ackward scale of 1"=6.9...'. Each page is slightly different.
Due to the size of the pages each measured drawing is split over two pages with an overlap on each page. For example, there is no way to measure the total length of the hull in one go; not that I wanted to do that with the dynamic ackward scale.

DO NOT TRUST ANY DRAWINGS -- To illustrate that you should not trust any drawing, especially in books, just read this. I wanted to copy the buttocks profiles on page 114 in the model size. The vertical "buttocks out" lines are 12' on port and starboard side which is 24' total, and measured 3.45" on paper. So that needed to be enlarge to 6.0". 6.0 / 3.45 = 1.74, so I had to enlarge that drawing part to 174% which I did on my trusted Brother inkjet printer. Always check to make sure, and the distance between the port and starboard side 12' vertical buttock out lines was indeed exactly 6.0". The main breath should be 27' which is 6.75" in model measurement. I measured the main breath at the 18' water level on my copy and it read 6.96". WHAT IS WRONG IN THE DRAWING, the vertical buttock out lines or the buttock profiles???
Next I measured on copy paper the 24' waterline and it was 6.09". And sure enough, it was not my printer because that meausrement on the drawing was 3.5". Hence different horizontal and vertical scales. Hence taking direct measurements from the drawings is useless.

Just some real measurements (page 17 and specs) versus model measurements.

Sails L.B.Jenson's bookscale ¼":1'
(scale 1:48)
Main Sail 4,100 sqft 256 sqin 1,652 cm²
Fisherman's Staysail 1,900 sqft 119 sqin 768 cm²
Fore Sail 1,480 sqft 93 sqin 600 cm²
Jib Topsail 1,160 sqft 73 sqin 471 cm ²
Total Area of 8 Sails 11,690 sqft 731 sqin 4,716 cm²
Hull Dimensions
Overall length of Hull 143' 35-3/4" 91 cm
Bowsprit, projection 17' 6" 4-3/8" 11 cm
Overall length of ship 160' 6"
Main breath to outside of planks 27' 6-3/4" 17 cm
Height from base line to deck at mainmast 20' 6"
Load draught 16' 6" 4-1/8" 10 cm
Mast Dimensions
Mainmast, diameter at step 22" 7/16" 1.2 cm
Mainmast, heel to head 96' 2" 24-1/16"61 cm
Main Topmast 52' 5" 13-1/8" 33 cm
Height from deck to truck of Main Topmast 121' 6"30-3/8" 77 cm
Main boom 80' 11"20-1/4" 51 cm
Main gaff (early Bluenose 46') 52' 5" 5
Foremast, diameter at step 20" 7/16" 1.1 cm
Foremast, heel to head 82' 2"
Fore Topmast 50' 3"
Height from deck to truck of Fore Topmast 108'
Fore boom 32' 11"
Fore gaff 33' 2"
Height from base line to truck of Main Topmast142'
Displacement Tonnage 285 tons
Net Register Tonnage 96.48 tons
Engines & Generators
Engines, 180 hp Caterpillar Diesel (2)
Feathering Propellers (2)
Generator, 75 KW Caterpillar Diesel (1)
Generator, 50 KW Caterpillar Diesel (1)
All sails, wind 90 mph, max logged, unofficial21 knots
All sails, wind 55 mph, max logged, official 18 knots
Under power, max logged 9 knots
Master (1)
First Officer (1)
Chief Engineer (1)
Boatswain (1)
Cook (1)
Seamen (7)
Messboy (1)
Total crew (13)
Passenger capacity (10)


Bluenose or Bluenose II, comparison, discussion, modelling plan

I bought L.B. Jenson's book in 2010, and put it away after a quick scan for a future project. I picked it up again this year and read it from cover to cover, and I was hooked.

The only difference of the Bluenose II from the original Bluenose are in accommodations & stowage and in the addition of modern navigation devices and safety equipment required for sea-going certification including carrying tourists.

Initially I wanted to build the Bluenose II in a scale of 1cm = 1foot (scale 1:30), because I wanted to model the whole interior too and needed the space to do that. The deck would be removeable otherwise what is the point, right. The model of the Bluenose/Bluenose II I want to build from scratch.

SCALE -- The scale of 1cm=1' (1:30) would result in a model of about 64" (163cm) long and 57" (144cm) height. We have a big house, but I would need a boathouse to display it. 1/4"=1' (1:48) is typically the largest size used ship modeling, so that is what I will use.

MODELING THE INTERIOR -- Since I wanted to model the full rigging, including the sails, making the deck removable would be a challence. The deck would be in section and joints a bound to take away from the beauty of the ship. I will satisfy myself by making some top structures removable and allowing a peek inside.

KIT OR SCRATCH BUILD -- I built models of the Cutty Sark in 1990 and the Blue Shadow in 2003, both from a kit. I feel that I have the skills to build from scratch. If need be, I found online stores where I can buy modeling material.

BLUENOSE OR BLUENOSE II -- I have no choice but to use Eisnor's Bluenose blueprints. I will augment that with the details from Jenson's book. So I will say that I am modeling the Bluenose and/or the first Bluenose II.

top prev next bottom Pictures

Click on a thumbnail to get a larger picture and then used the back button of the browser to return.

top prev next bottom Plans, Drawings, Sketches (mm)


top prev next bottom Materials List in mm for scale 1:16-2/3 (1:16.67)

Here is the detailed materials list.


Strong note

Tower (Romp)

(mm) *)
colour, suggested material, comments
trundle field (krui veld)
top boards

apron boards



grey/brown; 2" x 6" red cedar

angled brace fitted when mounting auger system!

Raw Material (inches)

Approximate list of raw material bought for this project. Where possible I use leftover material from previous projects too; those are not listed here.

4 pcs of 7ft -- 2" x 4" (1-1/2" x 3-1/2") red oakstanchions

top prev next bottom Required Tools

top prev next bottom Construction


Nov-2017 -- The first saw dust was made

To give an idea of the required construction and finishing time:

Keel 0;

The project was considered completed on ???.


This is an overview how things fits together.

Bow -- The front end of a ship.

Stern -- The back end of a ship.

Load draught -- The level to which part of a ship can safely go under the water when it is carrying goods, passengers, etc. without the ship sinking





What went wrong



top prev next bottom References


  1. Bluenose II, Nova Scotia's Sailing Ambassador, Store, Books -- Go to Store and Books for the book "Bluenose II, Saga of the Great Fishing Schooners, measured drawings", by L. B. Jenson, 1994, ISBN 1-55109-063-5. 140 pages, $24.95 plus S&H.
  2. Bluenose, Nova Scotia's Sailing Ambassador, Store, Misc -- Go to Store and Misc for the Bluenose Model Ship Plans, scale 1/4& = 1'0&, 7 sheets, $103.00 plus S&H.


This is just a sampling of links to Bluenose and Bluenose II, but they may get you started.

Bluenose & Bluenose II -- Bluenose & Bluenose II summary

Bluenosers -- Why are Nova Scotians called Bluenosers?

Bluenose fishing and racing schooner -- Bluenose history

Bluenose, Grand Bank Schooner -- Bluenose in its glory days

The Canadians: Angus Walters -- Captain Angus J. Walters of the Bluenose

Bluenose resting place -- Bluenose's final resting place?

Bluenose II replica -- Bluenose II history

Bluenose II now -- Bluenose II, Nova Scotia's Sailing Ambassador

Bluenose II -- restoration videos 1 -- Bluenose II, 2009/2015 videos 1

Bluenose II -- restoration videos 2 -- Bluenose II, 2009/2015 videos 2

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Updated: 15-Dec-2017 22:49 EST -- Copyright © 2003-2017 Pieter van Vliet. All rights reserved. (Remove "NoSpam" before sending)