Model ship kits are usually rated as entry level, intermediate level or advanced level. Although this seems to be self explanatory, there are some other factors involved. European model ship manufactures, which covers most of the kit manufactures, are of the opinion that you already have the knowledge and skills to build a model ship and therefore do not need a lot of detailed instructions, this poses problems for many builders such as Americans who are used to getting very detailed instructions such as you receive with Model Shipways kits. European manufactures also rate their kits differently, they rate their kits more on a quantity level than on a skill level. For example, an entry level kit may have only one mast and minimal rigging where an advanced level kit may have three masts and a large quantity of rigging, the skill level would be the same for the two models, only the amount or quantity is more for the advanced level kit.
Because of these differences, Historic Ships recommends that new or limited experience modelers start with a model from Model Shipways or Midwest Model, who are American manufactures and offer excellent plans and instructions.
For foreign model ship kits, Historic Ships recommends that you purchase supplemental books to assist you while learning to build models. Most all of the books listed in our book section are excellent books, but for the novice or beginner we recommend one or more of the following books; Ship Modeling Simplified, Planking The Built Up Ship Model, How To Build First Rate Ship Models From Kits.