The source of the ships was primarily Ross Stores, some from Big Lots. They were all "mantle piece" ships that came on a wooden stand with two risers to hold the ships up. I removed the risers and - carefully - chiseled off the keels to make the ships into what I call semi-waterline models. I'm not brave enough to saw them down more than what they are so they all ride high in the water. I'd love to add a couple of more ships but haven't been finding them of late - I suspect the factory in China that was making them may be a victim of the global economic malaise. They can be found, but at much higher prices than I paid for them, generally in the $15 - $24 range.
The most astute viewers will have noted that there are two pairs of "identical twins" in the lot. I do plan to make some modifications so they each get "individualized." If I can find more, I'd like to get more armed ships and some more merchant ships (pirates always need more victims) and then I'll cut up the two duplicates to use as Wounded Warriors of the Sea.
Here are a couple more photos, one of two ships - British and Spanish side by side, on the ship on the left is a stand of black primed figures awaiting paint. The other photo shows a close up of the figures to help give you a sense of scale of the ships to the figures.
Well, I hope all these photographs will keep you happy for a while since real life is intruding and I may not be able to do an update for many days. But I will work hard to maintain at least a weekly update. The map will be getting some updating and revisions, hopefully to include more named features rather than the current mostly generic identifications.
Enjoy the ships! I do.