Model Ship Sport

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Model Ship Sport


a technical sport involving the design and construction of model boats and ships for sports competitions. Model ships are divided into 36 categories based on the classification of naval and merchant vessels. Self-propelled models run by means of sails, rubber-band propulsion, or inertial, steam, internal combustion, or electric motors. In display competitions, stationary and some mobile models are judged for quality of craftsmanship and faithfulness to original plans and prototypes. Competitions of mobile models are also held to judge the speed, stability, maneuverability, and other qualities of various models, among them self-propelled model boats and ships (including hydrofoils and submarines), speed models of unspecified design guided by a wire that the operator holds in his hand, and radio-controlled models. Model sailboats are also raced in special categories.

Model ship sport developed from experimental ship modeling in the early 20th century, when the first exhibitions of stationary ship models were held in several European cities, including cities in Russia. In the late 1920’s many cities in the USSR began holding regular exhibitions and competitions of model sailboats and boats running on rubber-band propulsion. The first all-Union model ship display competitions were organized in 1940, the contestants participating in absentia. Ail-Union competitions have been held regularly since 1949. The development of model ship sport was linked with the activities of the Masters of Sport A. S. Tseloval’nikov, P. F. Tarasov, A. N. Pavlov, P. A. Lachugin, and V. V. Nagurnyi. Model ship sport was included in the Uniform All-Union Sports Classification in 1963. In 1964, the All-Union Federation of Model Ship Sport was organized under the auspices of the Central Committee of the All-Union Voluntary Society for Cooperation With the Army, Air Force, and Navy (DOSAAF USSR). In 1966 the federation became a member of the European Model Ships Federation (N A VIGA), which was formed in 1959.

The USSR annually holds more than 4,000 model ship competitions, in which approximately 200,000 rated contestants take part. Soviet contestants have participated in international model ship competitions since 1955. European champions include G. V. Samarin, V. F. D’iachikhin, Iu. N. Nikolenko, K. V. Pachkoriia, and M. A. Papudzhian. In 1975 more than 1,000 workshops of model ship sport were maintained by organizations of DOSAAF USSR and by educational and noneducational institutions. The Central Workshop of Model Ship Sport, which was founded in 1964, is maintained at the Central Marine Club of DOSAAF.

Model ship sport is highly developed in Sweden, Italy, the Hungarian People’s Republic (HPR), Great Britain, the People’s Republic of Bulgaria, the Polish People’s Republic, the Czechoslovak Socialist Repbulic (CSSR), Switzerland, France, the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG), and the German Democratic Republic (GDR). Numerous prizes and championships have been won by I. Suster (CSSR), M. Marinov (Bulgaria), H. Hoffmann (GDR), G. Merlotti (Italy), H. Peiner (FRG), T. Olsson (Sweden), I. Abraham (HPR), and R. Berman (Great Britain).


Sudomodel’nyi sport. Moscow, 1967.
Morskoi modelizm. Moscow, 1960.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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