A junk is an ancient Chinese sailing vessel design that is still in use today.  The term junk is used to describe several types of boat—ocean-going or coastal; fishing or cargo ships, pleasure boats or floating
homes. They vary greatly in size and there are significant regional variations in the type of rig. However their battened sails are a significant shared feature. Battens are horizontal members which provide shape
and strength to the sails. Junks are a common sight in Asian waters.

SSN-Modellbau of Germany has released a pair of small two-masted fishing junks (fischer dschunke) as their follow-up to their very nice TID tug kit. This offering is a very simple affair: waterline resin hulls,
pre-cut plastic rod for the masts and color paper sails.  This is a bagged kit and there are no instructions provided, but assembly is really straight forward so they are really not required. A photo of an unpainted
completed junk is on the SSN-Modellbau website (http://www.ssn-modellbau.de/) as a reference. The hull castings are well done and have a nice level of detail, though it is a bit hard to see it in my photos.  
The hulls need to be carefully removed from the casting plug.  The two rods on either end are casting channels and they also need to me removed.  Each ship has a rudder so be mindful of this and don’t
mistake them for resin film that needs to be removed.

The deck has location openings for the masts. The plastic rods provided are pre-cut to the correct length (longer rod for the main mast and small for the foremast). One could substitute brass rod is they wish
using the plastic versions as a template. The paper sails are done very nicely and you could add thin wire or rod to make the battens and give the sails a little depth. You will have to search the Internet for
images of junks for painting and rigging guides. The more utilitarian junks are simply painted while others may have a more elaborate, colorful scheme. Rigging is generally very simple as these are not square-
riggers. This set will make a great addition for a Far East or China Station diorama – pictures of warship form really any time period that have served in Asian waters will undoubtedly have indigenous  
watercraft in the background. Now you can add a touch of local flavor to a modeling scene without too much trouble or expense. You can purchase this set from BMK’s Modellmarine.De site or Free Time
Hobbies.
Felix Bustelo
Mandarin of Manhattan
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