Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Oscar Goldman builds the DMB-87: PART 3

Hi, Oscar G. here sharing my modeling passion with my fellow modelers, no matter what our size differences are. Let's get on with it before my proud country goes into the wood chipper.

Digitized views are printed on cheap paper. The two 1/4 inch slabs of styrene are laid right on the print to figure out how to build up and down. This hearkens back to building balsa wood airplanes right on the blueprints using pins.

Imagine the void, the empty space that will be the cockpit. I build styrene walls around it to define the space.

Constantly check size and scale, a 1/48th scale pilot is checked to see if everything seems right. Two figures will end up in here. The idea is that this fuse will get cast in resin and the cockpit will get dropped in.

I attached a floor plate onto the bottom of the raw fuse slab to define the cockpit. In my infinite wisdom I chopped the fuselage slab to make room to locate the engines. The engines were keeping me awake...trying to figure out how to blend these things into the bottom of the fuselage. They are round when they exit the fuselage, but where they are in the fuselage they are flattened into the bottom of the ship. Anyway, I thought cutting the fuselage would get me where we needed to be.

Here you can see the slab attached to the MDF rail that gets clamped in the vise.

Here is the slab in the vise in the mill. The MDF rail is on center, the slab is my datum, anything on the blueprint could be located on the slab. Once all the locating information is cut into it, I can think about all the other stuff, the outer shape and sundry details. In this pic I am milling a slot to center the rear fuselage portion.

Again, the pesky engine placement. These are "dummy engines" made to sort out how they are going to get made.

Here are the squared up styrene blocks that will define the cockpit void. To the left of the pic is the front. The crenelations in the two side peices are an attempt to incorporate canopy details. Let's just say I didn't plan that part well, and even though they look spiffy, served no useful purpose. Fortunately, model building is also a process of expanding one's consciousness. The channel that cuts across the slab is for brass pins to locate the the wings.

You can clearly see the cockpit void in the front section on the left. The two rear fuselage slabs are at the right. Between them in the slot is a .125 styrene section that will become the strake between the engines. I couldn't think about it anymore, I just had to start building.

I drew the top view on, then rough cut out on the band saw.

Smoothed the sides on the disc sander.

Bottom view. There are times during building when it seems like a total drag. I remind myself, not to hurry. This IS the fun part. I have lots of models on my shelves. Many I have not looked at in a long time. Once the thing is done...onto the shelf. On to the next...

Friday, May 5, 2017

Oscar Goldman builds the DMB-87: PART 2

But First a Cold War Joke and after much laughing we will talk Datum Line:

In case your under 30, let me introduce myself, I'm Oscar Goldman and I'm scratchbuilding a DMB-87 in quarter inch scale. The "Snuka" is from the hit Japanese television show SPACE BATTLESHIP YAMAMMAMOMOTO 2199. (I always have to stop and think if its "Yamato" or Yamamoto", it's an occidental thing).

The orthographic plans are brought into Illy and carefully sized. I've been down this road before, so I am very careful to get everything properly scaled and all the layers with various views properly labeled. At some point you will end up with a lot of layers and they will all look the same. I know this is really dull and I sound like your mom. Fine. Make a mess, see if I care.

Here is a print out on 8 1/2x 11 paper, the lines are so I can cut the pages and register them. I end up printing out a lot of pages as I go along, doing it on standard sized cheap paper works well. The "Marquette" is made from foam core and is just a mental exercise to wrap my head head around how I'm going to build this thing. This ship has a lot of complex curves that all meet up in odd places. The wings and landing gear are pretty straight forward, they basically hang off the fuselage. The fuselage, however, has a lot of stuff: two frontal jowl rocket pods, chin scoop, cockpit, turret, six wing connections and two engines tucked underneath. There are flairs and bulges everywhere, a metal clad exhaust housing past the engine nozzles. The fuse terminates in a twin micro boom...

This is one of the reference pics, showing all the beautiful brain auguring complexity. When I'm looking at this I am trying to see how all the components are going to be located and hung off an imaginary datum line that runs through the design core. Sure, I could just whip out some oven baked clay and make a pattern, but how do all these remain symmetrical...proportional...straight... Believe it or not, this is fun for me. I'd rather make a Rubrics puzzle than solve one.

Here is an indication of what's going on inside my tiny brain. Everything relates to the fuselage, the core of the model. I draw a line that runs through the center, usually I refer to it as the "center line" or "zero line", the correct term is datum line.

Datum line: (engineering) A line which serves as a reference or base for the measurement of other quantities.

If this were a "studio" style model, the datum line usually doubles as the metal support armature. This model falls into the hobby kit world so will be created sans metal support armature. It's only 18 inches long, so we don't need to go crazy here anyway. (However, I am intending to cast in hard points of brass tubing as support so the model will not sag over time). Back to this illustration. Forget the surface detail, it's a distraction. Instead, think about the sub-assemblies. On the nose are two jowl rocket pods (see lines A and B, above). All that matters is how they get located onto the fuselage. Again, if you look at the animation pic from the show (above) do not be dazzled by the surface detail. Mentally break down the overall housing, the interior honeycomb holding the rockets, the forward rib extension and the lip around the opening. Now, imagine each part as emerging from a simple block of material. These blocks in turn are located to the fuselage via the datum line running through it's core.

From the start I'm thinking about the construction method of how this thing will get made. I can carve patterns from wood and vacu-form them to make shells. I can build up the under-structure using bulkheads and fill in the curved surfaces with epoxy. I can carve the whole thing out of styrene blocks. There are pros and cons to each. Vacu-forming will yield beautiful curved surfaces, but getting the parting line on this model will be challenging. Vacu-forms also shrink. It's also harder to nail the datum locators on the resulting shell. I seriously consider epoxy, but I'm worried about getting an even surface. Its also unclear if I can scribe panel lines. I settle on the styrene blocks. The thickest styrene I have is 1/4 inch, so multiple layers will have to be laminated together to get my shapes. However, these slabs will also serve as datum points for building. Styrene has the advantage of being easy to work with and the surface will accept detail lovingly. These drawings are meant to show how I think about the building inside out. The cockpit space is thought of as a void that will be walled around with styrene blocks. In block form centers can be located along the datum line, holes drilled to locate sub-assemblies and so on. The most complex part of this model are the engines. We will get to the details of this later, when it makes more sense.

I know enough bla bla and let's get building! Here are two slabs of 1/4 inch styrene, rough cut that will become the basis of the fuselage.

They are glued together with CA (super glue) instead of Weld-on liquid bonding solvent. This stuff can curl parts when it dries and shrinks.

This is a horizontal slice of the fuselage. I cut out half a top view template and draw a slightly over sized outline using the center line. This is a visual reference only at this point, a sort of high altitude map.

Using screws, I then attach a strip of MDF on the bottom on center. This will be a handle of sorts, a reference to center when I put this into the mill to create the actual center line.

Of course, using the "mill" these days is like using carbon paper or a dial telephone, everything is spit out at the touch of a button by printers. The MDF rail on the bottom (clamped into the vice) will define the center line. This makes things easier as I go back to locate various elements.

Find center, zero it out, use the mill bit to cut both sides the same from center.

Join me next time as we get all transcendental and create the void.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Ok, Let's back up a bit...

It's been a while since I've been posting, so here is some recent stuff:

This Bandai's Cosmo Zero from SPACE BATTLESHIP YAMATO 2199. Akira's Mount.

And now something completely different, a Hawk model San Francisco Trolley. Older than dirt, built OOB excepting figures, base and grinding out the openings in the wheels.

This is a 1/72 I-153. Yes, I will build ANYTHING.

So, now we are kinda caught up, I'll post more on the DMB-87 soon. Say good bye Sticky!

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Oscar Goldman builds the DMB-87: PART 1

Hi, Oscar Goldman here. I fell in love with Space Battleship Yamato 2199. In particular the smaller Garmillas ships. Sadly, Bandai only made these in a really small “trinket” scale. To be fair, they only made two of the UNCN fighters, the Cosmo Zero and Hayabusa. I was able to lay my hands on a 1/48 scale resin kit of the DWG 262 Czvarke by J.Factory.

I am going to scratch build a "Snuka" from Space Battleship Yamato 2199. I hope you will find it to be as an exciting a build as I do.

The first step is to line up all the reference you can find.

This is a screen grab from episode 20 showing Snukas being launched off the Garmillas carrier Lambea. The DMB-87 is featured in this episode quite heavily in the first few minutes.

This a scan from the Space Battleship Yamato Special Art Book: Garmillas. There are 4 pages of images.

Above is a photocopy I made of the of the hand drawn orthographic projections. These make building the model so much easier than trying to reverse engineer it from screenshots. Beware! These seem definitive, but like all blueprints, they must be treated with suspicion.

This is the Garmillas reference book I am refering to.

There are many, many Japanese books about SBY 2199. It is fortunate that I know someone who may have them all. Above is a scan from one of the later volumes featuring "artwork". The lower picture lays out rear details to great advantage. It is dreadfully important to make sure you find all the reference you can before you start. Again, because you are dealing with entertainment, representations of objects change depending on their function in that part of the story. You will need to be creative and decide what version you will make.

Lastly, Bandai made this swell model as an add-on for one of the carrier kits. The scale is not given. Because of the small size a number of features have been simplified.

The top view orthographic is scanned and resized to 1:1 1/48th scale and printed out. The model will be about 18 inches long. At the top is the J.Factory 1/48 fuselage of the Czvarke as a size reference. Next time I start wrapping my head around all the models curves and start gluing up blocks of plastic.

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

TITLE DELEATED: Building Ingmar Spijkhoven's KrAZ 255B Part 2

So lets start get started.  It's a nice change of pace from INFORMATION DELETED. I have been corresponding with this models creator, none other than the infamous I. Spijkhoven. He has a blog at:

I think he liked what I was doing (and the $25 I sent for the plans), but seemed a little nervous that some of you swine out there who visit my blog (yes, all two of you) are going to download the build up images and reverse engineer the model.  This of course takes a lot of herring off his families table.

Here you can see CONTENT DELETED. Normally I like to DELETED and CENSORED. It just goes to show that you can CENSORED, but you can't CENSORED YET AGAIN.

The online plans really DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT IT. 


Wharf? I thought you said TOO MUCH INFORMATION the dwarf!


Here it is in its cubic glory. It is really a wonderful model, sure it THERE AIN'T NO SANITY CLAUSE, but once you have MASTERED YOUR DOMAIN, you will thank me.


I leave you with a final GLIMMEND IJSJE, you can see the BEVROREN PARAPLU in action.

Many thanks to Ingmar Spijkoven for letting this amazing construction into the world and looking forward to the smoking email of J's and K's that will be rocketing my way the moment I hit publish.  Cheers!