A Year in Port Polar Bear 2009


1-11-09 Our first building meeting of the year was held on Sunday. Our host Ron had is freshly rewired St Louis on the bench getting the servos set. It now has solenoids and test switches to go along with its new radio box. Ron also worked on patching and painting his freighter. Itís had several improvements in the super structure as he tries for Best of Scale this year. Ron was throwing away an old coffee pot and saw a part that looked just like a twin 40mm gun tub. This new steel piece sits on the bow of the freighter. Moe & Ben both stopped by and talked about boats but neither had a ship to work on. Peter has his new Class 1 convoy ship, some kind of oiler, along. Itís about 1ft long, Iím interested to see how he fits all the parts in it. He also had the ribs for his cruiser. Itís one of the K class, Koingsburg, maybe. I donít remember and will just end up calling it TMGLC. He showed us the ribs and we all gave an opinion on how to install the stringer. He spent most of his time working on his new radio box, soldering Power Pole connectors. Jason had the Alaska with and a large box of stuff that will go into it. We put it on the scale and found the weight to be pretty close. The insides are pretty tight too; funny how such a big ship can have so little room in it. Steve had the Brooklyn up with him. I didnít see what he was working on during the meeting. But he has made a lot of progress on the insides of the ship. It will easily hit the water this spring. Lars & Andy D. where also at the shop with a Tiger, Andria Doria and an LST. I gave Lars his convoy ship radio back from NATS. Lars spent most of the time with a large hammer and chisel. I always get worries when someone works on there ship with a hammer. The former owner of the AD had glued in some motor mounts that would not come out. Seams like stuff always falls off your ship when you want to keep it, but when you want to remove it, better get out the hammer. Lars is installing new Traxxas gear boxes, the reason for the demo work. I had the Warspite along and cut out the old motor mounts, it was a lot easier then Larsí project. I also cut out the old shafts and made some new ones. I am also replacing the gear boxes with Traxxas as part of the long list of things needed in the Warspiteís refit. The deck, guns, tanks, wiring, rudder boxÖ will have to wait until next time. As Ron commented several times we had tons of snacks to munch on. Pop, chips, crackers, cheese, meat, yummy. We picked the next meeting for the 8th of February, the Super Bowl is on the 1st or we would have taken that date. Same place (Ronís Shop) and time (Noon to 5) see you there.

One more thing, parts for guns should be here soon. Gun building days might be January 24, 25 and or 31. I have 50 guns on the list. If youíre getting guns you should come and help out. Even if youíre not getting guns stop by and lend a hand. It will take 2-3 days to make them all. If youíre canít remember check out the list below.

1-24&25-09 Gun Building Days @ Benís house. We made good progress on Saturday getting the guns together. Ben, Kim, Lars, Brandon, Peter & I were working on them. Chris stopped by to take a look at our methods. We got all the barrels cut, the Ts & elbows milled, most (40) of the mags cut, bushing cut, springs cut, caps drilled, some caps soldered, some of the Ts assembled. We still have a lot of work to go. The barrels, mags & elbows need to get soldered; more mags need to get cut, assembly of all the guns and the biggest part, getting all of them tested and fixing problems. I'm pretty sure we can get the assembly done tomorrow, not sure if all the testing will get done. Well we got the all the soldering & some of the assembly done yesterday. Lars, Ben, Jason, Steve & I soldered like mad most of the day. Most of the Ts are together and tested. Most of the barrels have safety pin holes drilled in them. Only a few of them have the burs cleaned up. At the next building meeting weíll get the guns together and tested. Stop by and pick up your guns.

2-8-09 Another building day at Ronís shop. Good progress was made on a few ships yesterday. Peter had TMGBC on the table, but was cutting large holes in the bottom of the ship. He claimed these are to get his batteries lower in the ship for better stability. I think he just wants to sink faster so his sheeting lasts longer. Lars had his AD along and has started on some supper structure. I have not included pictures of his progress as this is a family type hobby. We also found out he is naming it the Julius Caesar. Leading most to wonder if it will be called the Salad Shooter or the Scoot n Crouton.Ron spent most of his time watching the Wild Game, they won. He also helped me get the shafts into the Warspite. He had this pourable plastic that worked really well for filling the holes. With some micro balloons it should make some nice light weight water channeling. Paul E had the Honolulu on the bench ripping off the sheeting and pulling out the subdeck. Itís been awhile since he worked on it and hopes to have it on the water this summer again. Kim brought his dad along with his Wichita. He has most of the work finished on it. We tested the wiring and found the diode for the main power to the RX was backwards, an easy fix. We also found that both shafts were over filled with grease and one of the shafts was bent and making some bad feedback for the rudder servo. He borrowed a battery from Moe and is ready to test float it and sheet it. Moe stopped by looking for his Team Delta switch, but it did not arrive yet. Jason stopped by just long enough to pick up his guns. They were tested and a few needed some work. I spent most of the time testing and fixing guns. I found two main problems with the guns. One was the caps got drilled too high off the bottom and the air would go over the piston instead of under it. The other problem was the head of the piston was too small. We had a lot of them that were out of round and got spun down so they would fit in the T. But they became too small and too much air would go around them causing them to fall back into the cap. The new batch of screws I picked up where nice and round but they where too big to fit in the T, nuts. I also got Brandonís guns tested and working. Iíve collected a few lost and found items. I have Peterís ear muffs, some sand paper, some drill bits and the deburring bit. I have Brandonís Dremel. I have Kimís radio charger.

3-2-09 Our 2nd to last, I hope, building meeting of this winter was held yesterday at Ronís shop. It was a good crowd that got some work done and had some nice snacks. Lars brought Pizza along for lunch and also had the Salad Shooter with. Heís going to put it on the shelf to get the Tiger 1 & 2 ready for battling this summer. Mow stopped by ate lunch and picked up his Team Delta switch. Maybe weíll see his ship on the water this yearÖ Peter had turrets and AA guns he molded and was sanding them down. They looked very nice. We tested them with one of our newly build guns, they did not hold up to a direct hit and point blank range. Steve had the Brooklyn and parts of the Bismarck along. He also tested his deck, build out of sintra plastic, with the guns. The bbs left neat little holes in the plastic. Steve also brought along Martin, a new member with a Lutzow. Martin bough the ship with the hull cut out, SS made, decks, shafts & rudder all installed. We worked on getting the guns mounted and talked about getting the box wire and air systems done. He should be on the water this spring. Ron was working on the new deck he installed in the NC. He was getting the barbets in place and installing the guns. I resheeted the front 2/3 of the Washington. Since SIG no longer makes the Polar Grey dope and Hub does not carry the Brodak brand in a large can I bought a can of spray dope to try. It worked really well; I was impressed with how fast it went on. I think patching with it will waist a lot of paint so I might spray it into a jar. Tyler & I are driving to the Brouhaha in a couple of weeks. Looks like 3-29-09 might be a good day for another building meeting. Stay tuned.

3-12 to 3-17 BrouHaHa, see the article for more info.

3-29-09 Our last building meeting of the year was very active. Ronís NC has a new deck and some fancy new parts on his super structure. Best of scale this, we hope so. Still needs to be sheeted though. Brandon brought his I-boat and was getting the last of the sheeting taken off of it. I got his new guns mounted in the ship, things are a lot less cramped and easier to use now. As an added bonus his guns will work this year too. Peter had TMGBC on the table working on his new radio box. She also needs new sheeting. Martin drove up from Lacrosse to collect parts. Chris brought his brand new Cleveland hull and parts to the meeting. We overwhelmed him with everything he needs to do to get the ship on the water. We went over the internal layout and marked up some of the hard areas. I sold him parts for the air and electrical systems. Sounds like this will become the USS Duluth. Kim brought the nearly finished Wichita, just needs a water line. We did a final test on his guns and ended up replacing the pistons. They worked well. I shot my thumb with one and now have a big blood blister, ouch. I worked on everyone elseís ships and did nothing on my own. But they are all ready and just need patching form the last battle at Wadeís. Our first battle will be April 19th. It is posted on the MWCI page go sign up now! They Chanhassen pond is open and has been for a week. If for some reason the water is frozen again we may push it back one week.

4-19-09 Our first battle of the year. For over a week it has been warm and sunny, we picked the only cold and rainy day to battle on. It did get nicer as the day went on; the sun even came out as we were leaving. Even with the bad weather it was a fun day of battling. For the first sortie we had an Allies vs Axis battle. Washington (Bob), Wichita (Kim) and Invincible (Brandon) vs Derflinger (Tyler), TMGBC (Peter) and TMGBC2 (Tom). We set up and started getting the ships ready. Tom had to patch the damage from last fallÖ Brandon had a servo that was not pushing his popits so he had to open his box and make a repair. Everyone got ready and hit the water for sortie #1. The Axis ship concentrated on the Washington. Both fleets took a lot of damage and the Washington sank. Her sink is getting pretty old and the holes are becoming bigger each battle. There where also a couple of ram holes that did not help. Kimís Wichita was a little slow and Tyler was able to get some sidemounts into her for another 1st sortie sink. Things did not look good for the Allies. Kim & I patch and headed out for another sortie. Why we were getting ready Andy, Dave & Jake came down. Andy had the Baltimore ready to go and Jake was going to take The Bike out for a spin. Both of the cruisers were added to the Allies fleet. We needed the help. The 2nd sortie battling was a lot like the first sortie. The sidemount ships grouped up and slugged it out with the cruiser on the outside backing in. Even though both the Washington and Wichita sunk again the Axis took enough damage and sinks for the Allies to come back for a narrow victory. Scores were Washington 59-5-31 sink x 2, I-boat 34-0-2, Balt 0-0-0, Wichita 21-2-9 sinkx2, The Bike 2-0-0 vs Derflinger 19-2-10, TMGBC 53-10-33 sink, Scharny 70-0-31 sink.

As we were taking our lunch break Lars & the Tiger made it down to the pond. We switched fleets up for the 2nd battle. Washington, Balt, The Bike, TMGBC vs I-Boat, Tiger, Derflinger, Scharny. No one sank in the first sortie but Tyler lost a throttle switch and had to pull the Derflinger. He took over The Bike when Jake left. In the 2nd sortie the I-boat went down. TMGBC flipped sides for the 3rd sortie. This sortie saw the Tiger, Scharny & TMGBC all find the bottom. With Peterís score cut in half the final scores were Washington 36-8-26, Balt 0-0-0, The Bike 22-1-3, TMGBC 25-4-15 vs I-boat 154-1-9 sink, Tiger 87-17-16 sink, Derflinger 23-5-6 withdrawal, TMGBC 28-4-16 sink, Schanry 79-12-20 sink.

My reporting for this battle is pretty lame as I started it right after the battle but forgot to finish it until after the May battle.

5-9-09 A Saturday battle to get around Motherís Day, that fell of the fishing opener, but this did not keep the Port Polar Bear Fleet from heading out to battle. Of course Sunday had a lot nicer weather then Saturday, how does that work every time. We started to get to the pond around 9am. Kim, his wife and daughter were already there. Slowly everyone made their way down to the pond. Peter had to patch his boat from the last battleÖ There were not enough Axis to do an Axis vs Allied battle so we split fleets up to be: The Bike (Bob), Wichita (Kim), Washington (Andy), NC (Ron) vs TMGBC (Peter), Derflinger (Tyler), I-Boat (Brandon), Baltimore (Dave). Andy & I had done some work on his NC last weekend and during the week. We though weíd have a chance to get it ready for the battle today but there was just too much to do. I gave him my Washington so he could get some practice with sidemounts and I took out The Bike. Itís been a while since Iíve used it myself. Dave took Andyís Balt out. During the battle Andy got his sidemount practice in as Tyler & Peter came right after him. The sink on Washington is in terrible shape, I had planed on stripping it off right after the battle. Andy did not take that much damage before he sank. He patched and we sent back out for the 2nd sortie. After most ships had gone on 5 Andy lot control of the Washington as it backed towards the center of the Pond. Ron had his waders on and started out after it but could not get to it. I had Ronís radio and tried to catch it with his NC to try and push it towards shore. Washington sank before I could get there. Andy kept a line on it and Dave kept the NC parked over it. I started to swim out, the water was really cold. It sank in about 5í of water. I kicked around for it until I ran into it. I was too tired to drag it back to shore so Andy came out and dragged me to shore while I dragged the Washington. We were both pretty cold; I could hardly fell my legs when I was drying off. We drove up to my house, changed clothes and got some hot coco before going back to the pond. Most of the guys had gone to grab lunch by then. I found the reason why Washington lost control, a motor fired and took out a throttle switch, so I ripped the skin off the Washington, she was done for the day. Scores from the first battle were: The Bike (Bob) 9-4-3, Wichita (Kim) 19-2-4, Washington (Andy) 36-5-28 sink x 2, NC (Ron) 20-5-9 vs TMGBC (Peter) 41-8-21, Derflinger (Tyler) 10-2-10, I-Boat (Brandon) 88-1-4, Baltimore (Dave) 10-1-3.

Tyler was saddened to see that he had patched the hull and I was ripping the sheeting off. Kim had to had back home and John came to the pond so I went back home to grab the Frog so john could take The Bike out. Andy took The Sister of The Bike. The new fleets were: NC, Baltimore, Frog, I-Boat vs Derflinger, TMGBC, Sister of the Bike, The Bike. When I got the Frog to the pond the guns were not working. I had to open the box; a wire had broken off the Team Delta switch. I made into the battle just as the others got started. Ron, like a good NC driver, stayed out of trouble and used his stern guns. Brandon, like a good hug n slug guy jumped right into the middle of it. For the 2nd sortie Dave left and Andy took over the balt. In the 2nd sortie Brandon finally took enough hits to sink, Tyler put most of them in at the end. For the 3rd sortie we lost Brandon, Andy & Ron so we switched up fleets again but did not patch. This put Tyler & me vs Peter & John. The 4th sortie had Tyler vs Peter with John shooting both. Peter wanted to see how much damage he could take before sinking, Tyler was willing to help and got inbetween Peter and the shore. Normally this is bad but Tylerís haymaker was in the right spot, he emptied it, Peter sank. Thatís how those haymakers work. Scores from the last battle were: NC 19-1-11, Baltimore (Dave & Andy) 69-7-7, Frog (Bob) 1-2-2, I-Boat 80-2-14 sink vs Derflinger 55-1-1, TMGBC 68-18-76 sink, Sister of the Bike (Andy) 11-0-3, The Bike ( John) 7-0-0

6-7-09 Why would we ever schedule a battle on a sunny and warm day? Here we are in the middle of a drought, we only had ĹĒ inch of rain in May and our first battle in June is on the weekend it rains. At least we picked Sunday, just cold and cloudy, no rain. Kim & Brandon were already at the pond setting up when I arrived. Tyler & Hudson had made one trip to the pond with their gear and helped me take a load down. Tyler had called my cell asking me to bring some batteries and a barrel nut. But I donít have my cell on during the weekend so I did not get the message. I headed back home to collect some parts. I also grabbed a rack and weed eater so I could take care of the weeds in the pond and on the shore. When I got back to the pond I found most of the other guys set up. Then found out we needed spare safety glasses. Brandon & Chandler were ready and volunteered to go back to my place and bring more glasses. I spent some time killing grass while everyone else got their ships ready. After a lot of playing around with Hudsonís guns we were ready to hit the water. We broke the fleets into: Washington (Bob), NC (Andy), I-Boat (Brandon), Tiger (Lars), The Bike (Andrew), Wichita (Kim) vs Bismarck (Steve), TMGBC (Peter), Derflinger (Tyler), Tourville (Hudson), SOB (Justin). Andyís NC was hitting the water for the first time. The rudder gears were not messing well and he had a hard time getting the ship to run straight. Justin & Andrew were friends of Tylerís he is trying to hook into the battling hobby. Just as battle was called my ship slowed down, I thought I was mossed up but found one of my motors had died. I went on five out of control and thought for sure Tyler would come over and sink me. He stopped by a couple times but was having motor issues of his own. We felt like we were battling in slow motion. The first sortie ended and we went back to the bench to replace motors. Tyler was not sure if it was batteries or the motors so he left his old set in. I changed mine out and was ready to go again. Tyler & I spent some time working with Hudsonís guns to get them working again. With all the messing around that happened before the battle the two mag hoses got crossed so neither gun was working right. Back out for the 2nd sortie. Just as battle started I turned on my pump and it did not come on. I toggled a couple times and pulled into shore. One more burned out motor. I grabbed Andyís pump from the Baltimore, replaced and got back on the water just as Peter was pulling out the Tiger. While I was gone Tyler got his haymaker into Lars and that was enough to send him to the bottom. Kim chased Hudson around and his cruiser went down. It might have also been a pump failure, before the next battle we replaced his pump with my spare. Chandler/Brandon (Iím not sure who drove in what sortie) was bouncing around between battleships putting sidemounts into them. Between their work and a few more from Andy & I both Tyler & TMGBC went down. Scores were: Washington 30-9-24 sink, NC 21-0-7, Tiger 29-11-38 sink, I-boat 39-0-9, The Bike 3-0-1, Wichita 2-0-0 vs Bismarck 84-2-4, NC 38-0-7, TMGBC 28-3-21 sink, Derflinger 29-5-21 sink, Tourville 15-1-2 sink, SOB 15-1-0. The battle points were very close with the no flag fleet pulling out a victory 7,690-7,540.

We counted and patched to get ready for the 2nd battle. Someone ran to Taco Bell to get some lunch, thanks! Andy, Ron, Peter, Steve, Tyler and I made plans for our trip to NATS. Lars was included in the plans just in case he can make it. He already tabbed Andy on covering a day for TF 144.We got ready to hit the water with the same fleets. Tyler was determined to sink Andyís new NC. Tiger came after the Bismarck with his sidemounts then the Washington came by and emptied his stern guns in the big ship. Both ships kept after the big German battleship. Washington went for a sidemount shot on the Derflinger and ate a bunch of trips from TMGBC. But Washington paid him back with all of A turret. TMGBC parked it next to the shore for the rest of the sortie. I Boat kept chasing after the Derflinger helping keep him off of the NC. Andy pulled up to TMGBC and dumped the rest of his B turret into him. Peter called 5 and sank. Kind of like being back in his DD. Tyler finally got enough bbs into the NC and finished him off with a little prop wash. After I got Peterís ship out and Andyís I could not find the Washington. I feared she may have backed up and sank. But she just drifted down the shore. The Tourville had lost his rudder and was pushed in by the Derflinger and I-boat. The Bike sank and soon after the Bismarck was over come by the aboves Washington put in here earlier.

Scores were: Washington 32-8-5, NC 35-12-32 sink, Tiger 8-2-10, I-Boat 28-0-1, The Bike 17-1-8 sink, Wichita 21-4-5 vs Bismarck 74-4-3 sink, NC 44-0-4, TMGBC 57-15-21 sink, Derflinger 24-3-6, Tourville 8-2-8, SOB 13-4-1 withdrew. We called it a day and packed up all of our stuff to haul back up the hill. Tyler had brought down a picnic table and had to bring it back up. Those things are heavy.

6-28-09 We didnít have any rain for our battle on Sunday but we had a lot of wind that was blowing into our shore. The waves made every hole a below, turning against the wind was not a good idea. Brandon, Chandler & Kim were set up when I arrived at the park. Tyler was making his 2nd trip down to the pond and helped me get some of my stuff down there. Other battlers started to arrive shortly after us and soon we had enough people ready to battle and hit the water. One of them was Ryan Butler our 2007 NATS Rookie of the Year. Ryan has been missing in action ever since he won the award. It was nice to see him back at a battle. Fleets were Bismarck (Steve), Washington (Bob), Wichita (Kim), VDT (Ryan) vs TMGBC (Peter), Derflinger (Tyler), I-Boat (B&C), Tiger (Lars). Tyler, Peter and Lars started out going right after Steve. I took the Washington over by the I-boat to play with the little BC. Steve got shot up and sank in a bank of weeds. Peter had a pretty week pump stream for the amount of damage he was taking. He also sank next to shore. Turns out there was a large mass of bbs & balsa under his pump. Lars was next to find the bottom. One of his drive motors had died making him an easy target. Andy and Dave made it to the pond as we were wrapping up our first sortie. Andy would join the Flag Fleet and Dave the No Flags. The 2nd sortie started with Andy & I going after Tyler. Tyler backed into my bow and made a nice little hole.I pulled my boat out to fix it and Andy found Lars. Just as I was getting back in Lars sank, Andy told me he had done it, he had a big smile on his face. Peter also sank with another weak pump stream; he had more gunk in his pump. Andy had tangled a little too much with Tyler and sank near the end of the battle. I finally chased the I-boat around enough to drive him under. We all counted and patched. Scores were Bismarck 31-0-24 sink, VDT 57-5-15 sink, Wichita 4-0-1, Washington 21-5-15, NC 13-2-23 sink vs TMGBC 38-9-12 sink2, Derflinger 55-5-5, I-boat 70-1-18 sink, Baltimore 4-2-4, Tiger 18-8-28 sink2.

For the 2nd battle Steve was going to bring his new Brooklyn out for her first fight. The pump was not working and she sank with light damage.

The fleets stayed close to the same. Steve and his cruiser flipped sides for the first sortie, then flipped back with the Bismarck for the 2nd sortie. Brian and then Greg took out The Bike on the Flag Fleet. The Brooklyn was shot a few times and sank without here pump. The first sortie finished up without any other sinks. We reloaded and hit the water again. After trading sidemounts Washington, Derflinger & Tiger all sank at about the same time. Peter sank sometime during the battle too. But I never got his score, no telling if he sank from damage or pump problems. After sortie 2 was done several people took off. Tyler wanted to battle some more and took on The Bike (Greg) and the Pasta Rocket (Bob). The Pasta Rocket is his new cruiser. Its name is too long and hard to spell and since it is Italian and fast Pasta Rocket is a good fit. Tyler would not shot his own ship even though I tried to get him to do it. He did shoot up The Bike and sank it. After that little battle was over the rest of us packed up and headed home. Scores were Flag Bismarck 14-0-2, VDT ?-?-?, Washington 39-10-30 sink, Pasta Rocket 0-0-0, NC 29-8-13 vs No Flag TMGBC ?-?-?, Brooklyn 15-0-3 sink, Derflinger 31-8-12 sink, I-Boat 41-7-7, Tiger 65-8-18 sink, The Bike 30-6-22 sink. The Flag Fleet won both battles 10,250 to 8,660 and 9,445 to 4,780. After the battle I pulled the pump out of the Washington and found bbs and balsa under it. Part of my screen housing had torn and let too much gunk into the pump. This would explain my low damage sink, better a local battle then at NATS.

July 3rd Andy & I meet at the pond to do a 1on1 sidemount slugfest. After we shot each other full of holes we were going to unsheet and resheet the ships. I went over some of the things a new sidemount captain should know. We drove a round practicing sidemounts shooting. In the hopes of both of us being better captains and wingman at NATS. Battle #1 Bob 43-11-28, Andy 23-12-27 sink. Battle #2 Bob 33-18-35, Andy 27-17-47 sink. The scores were interesting, not just that Bob (The veteran captain) sank Andy (The green captain) but looking at the scores you can see something else. The number of holes are almost the same in both battles. In the first battle Andy had 20-30 bbs in his sterns, accounting for the greater number of aboves. But seeing that both the old man and new guy hit each other at the same rate should tell us something. For example driving around trading sidemounts is an even event and should be avoided. Only use sidemounts when you have the advantage. Two ships shooting close to shore and not running too hard are going to hit with a high percentage. Maybe Andy is a faster learner and Bob sucks with sidemountsÖ So why if the holes were so close did Andy sink twice and Bob was not in danger either time? Well Andyís hull sink was not very good and the holes were very big. Bob had a great skin on his ship and the bb holes were very small. A good skin does make a big difference. After the battle we got the two NCs and the Baltimore unsheeted and the sheeting process started before Andy went home. I got the Washington sheeted that night. Andy came over the next weekend and finished his ship up.

8-2-09 A beautiful day for a battle. Temps in the 80s a few clouds, no rain and no wind. Of course this was one of the lower attended battles of the year. It got a little close to NATS for most of us and turned into a cruiser battle. Ron & Andy had family time and could not make it. Steve, Peter & Bob all brought their cruisers because their big ships were shot up from NATS. Only Ryan had sidemounts today. If he had another ship he might have brought it out. Joining the cruiser captains was Kim and his cruiser and Paul E and his cruiser. We had a dad and his two kids also stop by to watch and take The Bike for a ride. I was trying to teach Zach how to drive without running into the shore or other ships. He did pretty well today. Paul did not think his ship would make it into the battle but it tested out close enough. It could only turn in one direction, but he put it on the water anyhow. Jason also brought the Alaska out; the guns were not working so it did sea trials only. He was very careful not to put it out when the cruisers might have some bbs. We tried to hit him but the ship was running about 19sec so we could not catch him. It was the Germans vs the world in the first sortie, then they were joined by Paul in the 2nd sortie. Paulís pump would not come on after taking a few hits from Zach and he sank. Itís ironic that many years ago the first ship I sank by myself was Paulís Honolulu. Now Zachís first sink was the same ship. He was pretty happy. Paulís pump worked just fine on the beach, weirdÖ We did a 3rd sortie and sank the VDT. Peterís Nuremburg also sank. Heís still having new ship blues and working things out. He took off and the rest of us patched and put out for a couple more sorties. Scores for the first battle were Nuremburg (Peter) 19-3-6 sink, VDT (Ryan) 110-4-5 sink,Honolulu (Paul) 15-3-3 sink vs Montcalm (Zach) 4-2-5, The Bike (Kids) 19-7-22, Wichita (Kim) 6-3-14, Brooklyn (Steve) ?-?-?. The 2nd battle was the Frog & VDT vs the US CLs. The kids left after a sortie and Zach changed out to The Bike after the 3rd sortie. Twice we had to chase after Steveís ship when it lost signal and started driving on its own. He also backed it under one time neat shore, it was a pretty funny moment. 2nd battle scores were The Bike (Kids & Zach) 11-2-4, Montcalm (Zach) 18-0-3, VDT†† , Brooklyn 28-7-29 sink, Wichita 19-3-22. Now weíre ready for the Ice Breaker August 21-22-23. Get to the pond by 9am each day so we can start battling at 10am. Weíll have 4-6 sorties per day.

9-27-09 It was another one of those weekends we should have battled the other day. It seams when ever we get a bad weather battle day the other day of the weekend would have been a beautiful battle day. Saturday was sunny warm and no wind, Sunday, our battle day, was cooler, cloudy and WINDY. Several of the regular battlers were missing. Ron was out of town. Peter was beating his other friends up with sticks. Ryan was going to be there but something came up at the last minute. Brandon said heíd try and make it but didnít. But we did have enough people for a battle. Lars (Tiger), Tyler (Derflinger), Kim (Wichita), Bob (Washington), Zach (The Bike), Andy (NC), Jason (Alaska) and Brian (SOB). Jasonís rudder servo did not work, the motor seamed to be fried, it smelled like it was fried. He did not have a spare and the rest of us did not have a spare that would fit. Tyler had resheeted the front 2/3rd of his ship. I thought this was a good reason to bring the Washington and trip the fresh sheeting. We split up fleets to be Bob, Zach, Kim & Lars vs Tyler, Brian & Andy. It was windy and the waves were hard on the low freed board ships. Brain got the SOB (Thatís Sister Of The Bike) too close to my sidemounts and got shot up a little. Zach did the same thing with The Bike and Tyler got him. Tyler also caught Kim and opened a large hole in his stern, 7-8 bbs blew out a dime right at the bottom of the window. The Bike would not start pumping and Zach kept turning and sank. Brian also sank the SOB. Kim was a nice guy and got both ships out of the water. About half way through the sortie Tyler slowed down, he lost a motor. I got to take the trips to his port side, freshly sheeted no more. Tyler pulled his old motors out and put his new motors in. When he put the ship on the water he found out that the motors were both wired in the same direction, opps. He left it out in the water on 5 out of control. I got to shoot up the port side, Tyler sank. Andy got a bunch of belows into Lars but could not put him down. Both of the kiddiesí cruisers went down again. Scores were Tyler 72-10-7 sink, Brian 25-2-13 sink(2), Andy 26-4-17 vs Bob 25-8-26, Zach 9-4-15 sink (2), Lars 18-7-22, Kim 1-2-8. Total score Tylerís fleet won by 200 points. For the 2nd sortie Brian had to leave so we split fleets up with Bob, Tyler & Zach vs Kim, Lars & Andy. Tyler had his motors fixed and the waves picked up to scale Typhoon size. We took off after Andy, stopping by to play with Lars when we could. The Bike was swamped by the waves again. After chasing Andy Tyler also sank, so did Andy. Both due more to the waves then to bb damage. Lars was really close to hitting the bottom too. We almost called off the 2nd sortie due to the super high winds. But we love to battle so we went out. Andy took off and I kept Zach on shore so we split up into a free for all. Tyler & I thought it was a little less choppy in the channel so we put in there for our 1on1. Lars chased Kim around in the open pond and sank. Tyler got in the first lick as I tried to turn out and triple his starboard side he unloaded his bow sidemount into my port side. My pump started going full stream; I told Tyler he must have blown something out. After the battle we found two large cracks folded open. A few bbs had found some old patches and opened them up. Tyler got greedy and ate trips and traded sidemounts trying to put me down. We both looked pretty bad just floating in the channel. It was a race to see who would sink first. Tyler won and I went down about 5 seconds later. The only ship left on the water was Kim, he must be the best battler in the club. After pulling the ships out of the water we packed up and went home. Tyler & Lars came by my place to pick up some DVDs and talk casements. Scores were Bob 26-9-25 sink, Zach 1-1-1 sink, Tyler 35-16-13 sink (2), Lars 20-8-17 sink, Andy 40-14-11 sink, Kim 13-2-5.


10-19-09 Our last (Maybe) battle of the year was held on Sunday. It was sunny and warm, considering the cold spell we had for the last couple weeks this was the best day we could have picked. Kim, Tyler, Peter & Hudson were already set up when Zach & I made it down to the pond. Peter had Ronís old Arizona ready for a sea trial. He had ripped out the old shafts and rudder and installed new ones. The results were very good. She turns 100% better then before the refit. Now he just needs to get new guns and an entire electrical rebuild done this winter to get her ready for next year. This would be the last battle for TMGBC, until it gets refit a few years from now, if ever. We split up fleets into Tyler, Peter & Hudson vs Bob, Kim & Zach. Who picked these teams? The result was as expected, the battle was Bob vs Peter & Tyler with Kim vs Hudson, Zach would bounce around between. The Bikeís old pump motor just does not put out enough water any more. He sank as was pulled out. Bob took a ton of damage and almost sank. In between sorties Andy and Lars made it down to the pond. Andy brought his ďnewĒ convoy ship he got from John Bruder at NATS this year. I took the rudder servo out and put in Andyís spare so we could take it on a test run. Inbetween battles we tested it out and thought it turned good enough that a major refit will not be needed. In the second sortie of the first battle Andy joined Bobís fleet and Lars joined Tylerís fleet. The destruction continued, Bob sank early in the battle, Andy got a clogged pump and also sank, Zach sank for a second time too. Scores were: VDT 50-18-27 sink, The Bike 12-2-6 sinkx2, Wichita 12-2-2, NC 38-12-10 sink vs Derflinger 39-3-2, Tourville 19-4-1, Tiger 17-3-4, TMBC 30-9-14.

We had a short lunch break to patch and hit the water for a second battle. This time Lars would flip fleets to try and even things out. Just as we were getting ready for battle two flocks of geese flew around the pond thinking about setting down. The ship must have scared them off. Not too happy about losing their pond space they ďBombedĒ us. I saw to big splashes in the water next to Andyís NC, turns out a third ďBombĒ hit the target and messed up Andyís deck. Since this was TMGBC last battle Andy & I decided to shot him up first. Andy pumped some trips into his port side and I got some sidemounts into the starboard side. It took most of the sortie but we got TMGBC on to the bottom. Peter had a bunch of water in his rudder box but would patch and come back out for another sortie. At the start of the second sortie Peter jumped into a weed bank and Bob followed, soon Tyler piled in too. Everyone got stuck, Bob & Peter got shot up. Some how TMGBC did not sink, I think enough weeds got sucked into the holes, but the little German battle cruiser was not so lucky. I ran it into another weed bank and floated for a while but not nearly long enough. Lars went out of control early in the battle and sank, he pulled his ship and fixed the problem then came back out and sank again. Hudson listed over and sank, as he was going down Zach ran into him and knocked his superstructure off. Zach was very proud of this and talked about it the rest of the day. Andy sank, not sure why, maybe bb holes. Tyler burned out a pump motor or switch and also sank. That means for the 2nd battle in a row Kim was the last ship on the water. After wards he made sure to let us know he was only sunk in his first battle. Weíll see how well Kimís next battle goes, hope you like your swim Kim! Scores were: Derflinger 65-9-9 sink, Tourville 11-3-4 sink, TMGBC -- sink, vs VDT 46-14-58 sink, The Bike 46-3-29 sink, Wichita --, Tiger -- sink,NC -- sink.

11-28-09 Our first building meeting of the year was held on Ronís shop. We started early, 8am, and stayed until 6pm. Most people got a lot of work done. There were some complaints that we could be battling as the ponds have not frozen over yet. I had The Bike and itís new decks along. I got the first coat of sealant on it. I also had the Warspite along so Tyler could start working on her new deck. Tyler had his Mlps so I could copy the superstructure for mine. He also had a new CVL he is building. Kim had the Marlborough along to get the shafts installed and work on the deck. Marlborough is just to long to spell. Sheíll have to get a nickname. Coffin Nail is the front runner, followed my Smokey. Iím not sure that Smokey is a good name for a ship, unless itís Louís. Ron stripped the hull skin off of the NC. Peter also took the skin off the AZ, itís been on there since 2002. We found some places he also needed to cut out of the hull so he took the ship outside and give it a trim. Heís got most of the insides done already and will be able ready to go very soon. Steve had the Altmark at the meeting adding pretty stuff to it. He also brought a new Prince Eugene hull he will be working on this winter. Ryan brought his VDT, he plans to sell it to get cash for the rest of his Gangut. Lars came to the meeting with the Salad Shooter. He has the main deck installed and the SS done in fiberglass. Itís heavy but will never be broken by bbs. Itís funny that Lars is going Axis the year that the rest of us a following Ron as Allies.

12-13-09 Our last building meeting of the year was at Ronís shop on Sunday. Peter had the Arizona along and completed the fiberglass repair he was doing to the hull. He also finished up the rudder. Sheís pretty close to done already. Peter will have time to work on his next project this winter. Ron was still cleaning the NCís sheeting off and replacing a turret that had been lost in a battle this fall. I finished sanding the Warspiteís new deck. I still need to make cuts, glue on the latches and get the deck into the hull. Then I can work on getting the internals done. Weíll see you next year.