"May, 1879. The Coast of Peru, near Iquique: shipments of arms and ammunition are coming south to equip the belligerents in what will come to be known as the War of the Pacific. Chile, Peru and Bolivia have ignited a struggle over control of mineral rich areas of the Atacama desert, and principally, the supply of Saltpeter, an ingredient essential to the production of gunpowder.
Captain Nemo, outraged by the prospect of militarists fighting a war over the very thing that enables them to destroy their fellow man, has decided to intervene.....two merchant vessels, loaded with a cargo of Minie and Chassepot rifles, see a monstrous shape emerge from the depths and race towards them at high speed...."
A quick run-through, then, of the completed vessels that will fight alongside Nemo in the conflict outlined above. First off, we have the Ironclad submersible the 'Catfish':
Next, we move on to the steam-powered 'Squid'
Finally a couple of views of the 'Piranha'
Some group shots; the paint schemes have come out looking rather more 'cute' than I had originally intended, so I may have to dirty them up with some ink-washes and maybe some rust streaks here and there:
Nemo's Allies sail off to prevent mankind from destroying itself:
So what of Nemo's own vessel, the Nautilus itself? Well, that scratch build would be a distinct step-up from this level, and is something I'm still thinking about. The iconic image familiar to modern readers is probably the version created for the 1954 movie version starring James Mason, done by Harper Goff for Disney studios; I doubt if I could really do this justice -
see some once commercially available versions here:
It is interesting to ponder, though, that the original version described by Jules Verne in 20,000 Leagues under the Sea, bore more than a passing resemblance to a vessel contemporary to the time of writing, namely the 'Alligator' of Brutus de Villeroi, built for the US Navy:
There's a fascinating site detailing the hunt for this lost vessel to be found here:
I think mine will be more likely to resemble this one, and then the search will be over!
Professor Arronax: "What is in those sacks they are carrying?"
Nemo: "Nitrates and phosphates for ammunition. The seeds of War. They're loading a cargo full of death....when that ship takes it home, the World will die a little more...."