The discussion of the Alien series of films and the props used in them is the aim, but if it's got Big Bugs and Big Guns, then they are welcome too!





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PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2021 11:36 pm 
Thanks ObiHahn! I'm making progress while I've got the chance.

Sorry for the double post. I was thinking about how to solve a tricky problem with my APC wheels and inspiration struck!

I 3d printed my APC wheels with an axle in the middle. I thought I'd worry about how to connect them to the chassis later. I don't want there to be a bolt or anything inside the shell connecting through to the wheel.

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So, I just worked out that I can 3d print a 2 part bearing that is glued to the outside of the shell. There's an inner sleeve (coloured red here) that is glued to the wheel.

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..and there's an outer sleeve (the blue bit) that goes around that, that's glued to the chassis.

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The outer goes on the wheel first (not glued) then the inner traps it in place and is glued to the wheel axle. Then the blue outer is glued onto the chassis to allow the wheel to spin.

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It makes sense in my head, so we'll see how it works when I print all this stuff out. :)


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2021 9:16 am 
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Country: United States
ever seen skateboard bearings? those could be cool to use. the thing would roll for a mile. brands like dragon bones, ect.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 28, 2021 10:47 pm 
Thanks Seven. There's a skate shop close to me so I'll scope it out.

In the meantime..

These took an hour to print with low infill - I'm just testing fit at the moment.

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..and there we are with a wheel for reference.

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The 2 bearings fit together OK but the tolerance is low.

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The inner bearing - the one that glues to the wheel, is a little snug. Some of that is the 'Elephant's foot' effect you get with the first layer overprint (better adhesion) but it could do with a little more slack.

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So I've adjusted the print file and I'm printing another. Hopefully that'll be better. :)


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 Post subject: Re: 1:18 scale M557 APC scratch-build
PostPosted: Sun Jan 31, 2021 4:36 pm 
Well, I’m happy to report that we have a rolling chassis. I do like to add everything back in from time to time - makes me feel that I’m making progress. The only thing missing is the driver’s dashboard. That’s having it’s LED lighting finalised.

The wheels are pushed on temporarily at this point and I’m testing that they’re all reaching the ground properly. :)

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I decided to mount the spinning assembly to the chassis so I can continue to work on the wheels and wheel-wells. I can put the wheels on whenever I like, which is nice.

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I realised that I’d missed a bit in the pics - the front turret! So here’s a shot of that in place too. I’ve some cleaning up and finishing to do on a lot of the plate-joins which is very evident here (and the windscreen and headlights of course) but I’ll get to that.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2021 12:22 pm 
AKKURAZI
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Location: Herne, Ruhr area
Country: Germany
Great looking beast!


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 Post subject: Re: 1:18 scale M557 APC scratch-build
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2021 5:43 pm 
Thanks ObiHahn! It's a beast indeed, certainly in size. :)


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 12:42 am 
Prop Churner Outer
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Location: Bath, Maine
Service Number: A03/TQ1.0.12143G1
Country: United States
Just stellar! You are getting really close to the finish line.

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:delta: My entry-level prop and costume tutorials: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=12751 :delta:


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 04, 2021 10:56 pm 
retrogarde wrote:
Just stellar! You are getting really close to the finish line.


Thanks Retrogarde! There's a way to go yet but I can just about see the light at the end of the tunnel. :)


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2021 12:49 am 
A small update today. I'm working on whatever these things are that are decorating the ceiling of Gorman's console. We get a good look at them when they're re-used in the Medical lab in Hadley's Hope.

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I've modelled up an estimation of one (they'll be pretty small) and I'll resin print them later.

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 Post subject: Re: 1:18 scale M557 APC scratch-build
PostPosted: Sat Feb 06, 2021 12:59 am 
Thanks to a lead on Facebook I think I've finally identified what the hell this thing is. It's a gyro gun sight from a WW2 aircraft. I don't know exactly which one yet but something like this:

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 06, 2021 2:20 am 
Prop Churner Outer
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Location: Bath, Maine
Service Number: A03/TQ1.0.12143G1
Country: United States
That was me, but I was just referencing knowledge gleaned from this very web forum!

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:delta: My entry-level prop and costume tutorials: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=12751 :delta:


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 06, 2021 10:50 am 
Haha - well thank you again Retrogarde! I'd been puzzling about that piece for a long time. :)


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 Post subject: Re: 1:18 scale M557 APC scratch-build
PostPosted: Sun Feb 07, 2021 7:01 pm 
I brought the resin printer in from the workshop to the studio (which has heating). After it had acclimatised I ran off some of the Gyro gun sight pieces. Here they are getting a UV bath.

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They're a little under-scaled (about 8mm wide) and far too flimsy to print properly so I'll up the thickness of the support bars, I reckon that'll do it. Sorry for the fuzzy image, I don't have a macro lens.

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 Post subject: Re: 1:18 scale M557 APC scratch-build
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2021 4:34 pm 

Location: Chicago
Those pieces were discussed a bit on page 2 and 3 of this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=17126


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 Post subject: Re: 1:18 scale M557 APC scratch-build
PostPosted: Mon Feb 08, 2021 9:10 pm 
TS826 wrote:
Those pieces were discussed a bit on page 2 and 3 of this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=17126


Thanks - those extra pics are a great help. I'm busy in CGI world re-designing the print files. I should have them re-done soon.


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 2:06 pm 
I had better results with the second batch of prints. Still some issues though. I forgot to add support to some of the pieces so those prints failed. Printing perpendicular to the bed will often fail because from one layer to another there's a sudden shift in mass which breaks off from the supports instead of lifting clean.

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So, I'm printing those pieces again on a slant to alleviate the strain and build up the mass incrementally. This is all fundemental resin printing 101 - stuff that I have learned but got out of the habit.

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Because there was no support, the top tanks drooped underneath - you can see that in the lighter piece alongside the darker filament printed/primed ones. It's a little smaller too so I've scaled the resin one to 105%. Also the exhaust piece snapped when I was prising it off the plate - another good reason to add support. The gyro sight pieces printed great though. :)

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Here's a tub of exterior greeblies in both resin and filament - some useable, some not.

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..and here's the current print in progress on the printing bench.

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On these small prints you can tell if they're printing properly if you hear a little pop when the plate lifts the print for the next layer. So far, all pops. :)


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 Post subject: Re: 1:18 scale M557 APC scratch-build
PostPosted: Sun Feb 14, 2021 10:32 pm 
New parts cooking in UV. I left them on their support for now so I don't damage them in handling before they're cured properly.

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I took advantage of another round of resin printing and made a couple of copies of the Sentry Gun cases I previously printed in filament. These ones have a suggestion of contents and the lids snap on/off perfectly.

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I'll be back to gluing styrene for a while now that I've got most bits printed.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2021 7:08 pm 
So, I'm sat in our local coffee shop with the missus. She's working on her short story and I'm tinkering with ideas for the APC.

Call me crazy but I'm seriously thinking of making the DSGR missile system a functional feature - at least as far as opening up. I'm having to deal with some interesting planar geometry for the ceiling inners/outers at this point anyway so I figured 'how can I make this even more tricky to achieve' lol.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2021 9:26 pm 
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Country: United States
in the 90s there were a ton of RC cars that had a feature where missiles would pop up and then fire. Might be be a mechanism you could salvage or copy.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2021 10:56 pm 
seven wrote:
in the 90s there were a ton of RC cars that had a feature where missiles would pop up and then fire. Might be be a mechanism you could salvage or copy.


Thanks Seven - hopefully I'll be able to keep it nice and simple. I've done some fiddling with card and I reckon it'll work. I knew all those Chupa Chup sticks would come in useful for something. :)

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It's just sat on top at the moment but hopefully it'll work well.

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I'll make some rounded warheads for the ends of the missiles and detail out the bays.

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Next up is cutting out styrene copies of my card shapes and sorting out how to keep the rest of the roof detachable.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 19, 2021 11:36 pm 
Next up is prepping for lighting the screens in Gorman's console - the TOC station.

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Just about to connect and test - always a nervous time (especially given my sloppy soldering).

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Yay! Not easy to see against the white background but it works!

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I got time to do a little more on the DSGR arrays too - building out the bays and sinking them into the roof.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 20, 2021 4:17 pm 
AKKURAZI
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Location: Herne, Ruhr area
Country: Germany
Great progress. When will you be building mine though?


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2021 6:59 pm 
ObiHahn wrote:
Great progress. When will you be building mine though?


Haha! I don't think I've got another one of those in me at my age. I might release the 3d print files when I'm done though - for anyone that fancies having a go and has a good supply of sheet styrene. :)


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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 10:29 am 
AKKURAZI
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Location: Herne, Ruhr area
Country: Germany
Skiffy wrote:
ObiHahn wrote:
Great progress. When will you be building mine though?


Haha! I don't think I've got another one of those in me at my age. I might release the 3d print files when I'm done though - for anyone that fancies having a go and has a good supply of sheet styrene. :)


Good enough! :wink:


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 01, 2021 10:47 pm 
It's time to start working on the rear ladder. This is going to be soldered up from 1.5mm brass rod.

I've never worked with brass like this before - so I was prepared for it to be a learning curve. Just as well!

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I filed fish-mouths in either end of each rung and tried working it with the soldering iron first. No joy there so I went with my mini butane torch and plumber's flux. That did the job and will produce decent results I'm sure - but I need a little more practice first - this first joint looks like a right dog's dinner. lol

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Onward and upward, exelsior!


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