Ironclad in History - CIM 1/96 USS Monitor

Ironclad in History - CIM 1/96 USS Monitor

28th Mar 2022

Welcome to the Free Time Hobbies Workbench. Here you can find great builds and techniques from around the web. We highlight different model builders to show you cool models and how you can do it yourself!


Today we are highlighting a ship that made history. Its name went on to describe a whole class of warships. It was also the first ship to use a rotating gun turret. This ship, of course, is the USS Monitor.

It launched on 30 January 1962, cheered on by an amazed crowd. In early March of that year, the USS Monitor would engage in an epic battle with a Confederate ironclad, the CSS Virginia. Despite an hours long battle that would result in a combined 63 direct hits, neither ship was seriously damaged.

The USS Monitor, unable to be brought down by enemy fire, succumbed to a winter storm on 29 December of 1962. It went down 16 miles off the coast along with 16 men. The ship, designed for river operations, couldn’t handle the open sea during a storm.

Several attempts to find the wreck of the ironclad occurred during the 20th century. Finally, during this month in 1974, a team from Duke University confirmed that they had found the USS Monitor resting upside down near Cape Hatteras.


Cottage Industry Models made a great looking kit in 1/96 scale to commemorate this historical ship.

The kit is made of resin and cast metal. The turret can be built to display the interior functions. Seen here, the wooden interior looks great.

There's a whole line of great looking Civil War Ironclads these days.  I haven't built the USS Monitor yet, but Flagship Models makes great molds of the most iconic Ironclads to serve.  How awesome is the USS Keokuk?


Making resin or polystyrene look like wood can seem challenging. It’s not really that hard, though. There are several techniques that can help you make scale boards look amazing. Some careful scribing and painting will get you some authentic looks.  Check out this tutorial for more information. 


How to paint wood on scale models - Method 1 of 3 - YouTube

Civil War Ironclad Ships The CSS Virginia and the USS Monitor Battle!! - YouTube

Wood Grain Techniques – Modeling and Storytelling (

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