Monday, October 19, 2009

The Eggs and Us

As promised, here are some shots of the other entries to the Mount Mansfield Modelers Egg-stravaganza.

They are presented in the order that they appeared on the table, from left to right (minus mine, btw). Keep in mind that base of these models were eggs that were identical except for color.

First was the pun (and I did groan out loud, but the creator expected it), I give you The Nest Egg:

This requires a bit of explanation. It represents the first solar-powered anti-gravity fighter-bomber in the post-war British inventory (the upper hull has to be transparent for the solar panels to work, see?)

Next came the WW1 entry. The rudder is movable, the wings are doped fabric, the canopy opens and closes and the prop is battery-powered. UPDATE: This beauty took second place

This yellow beauty was created by the guy who's idea this whole thing was (he also generously supplied the eggs. Check out those fabulous eyelashes around those cool windows and the tongue dashboard!

Finally was the Spruce Goose-Egg. Everything was scratchbuilt except or the engines and props. Look how smooth and perfect the boat hull is; it was made with from scratch with plastic cardstock. The outboard pontoons were carved from wood then molded on a vacuum-form machine.

listening to while posting: Sweet Enemy chilling out on the floor of my studio with the cat. She just got back from a long drive to Portsmouth and is telling me about all the art framing stuff she learned how to do.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Egg and I, Epilogue

Well, I just got back from the Mount Mansfield Modelers meeting and the egg contest was tonight. Man was I nervous! I hadn't felt that nervous since my last Aikido test. Sheesh. First I was worried that it would break in transit, or that I wouldn't be able to assemble it, or it would break on the display table.

Why was I worried about breaking? Earlier in the week, the nose gear fell off three times, each time I was certain it was on for good. However, it made it to the meeting and it stayed whole.

There were seven entries and competition was fierce! Fantastic, fantastic works. Of course I forgot to bring my camera, but I'll try to snag some from another member. The two standouts were a Spruce Goose Egg with the wings, tail and boat-hull nose all scratchbuilt and perfectly shaped and a "Jokker" (A WW1 nut, he couldn't decide whether to build a Junkers or a Fokker) It was a monoplane with movable rudder, full cockpit, doped-fabric-over-wood-frame wings and a battery powered propeller. On the line were two trophies built by the MMM's chairman (a gold and silver egg trophy for first and second place).

There were two rounds of judging; one for first place and one after for second place. I voted for the Jokker both times, but it was tough to decide!

As I said, I didn't get any shots at the show, so here are some shots I just took of the completed Snowflea on the dining room table.

So, how did the Snowflea fare against the other outstanding entries?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

The Egg and I, part three

Nearly done! Here's the test-assembled fuselage. Despite my best efforts, the clear canopy has become dirty. I have to figure out how to clean it without messing with the paint. Grr.

I applied decals. Even though you can't see them, the "28" is not the only decal. I've got a bunch of random things like grounding points, RESCUE arrows and other little things on the lower half. Sorry no pic, couldn't get one to work.

Here you can almost see the expansive cockpit. It is, as you may guess, hard to take a shot of a clear dome without the light reflecting in the middle of it.

Here's the aft section. The ringed hole is the mount for the engine nacelle shaft.

I can't remember if the contest is THIS Thursday or NEXT Thursday. I'm building as though it were this Thursday, so I'll post some completed pics before then.

Listening to while posting: "Gebrauchmusik II" by Adrian Legg

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Egg and I, part two

Still working on the egg. I got the first coat of paint on, but found that I REALLY need a moisture trap for my airbrush. I never noticed it because I'd been doing most of my modeling in the winter with a wood stove roaring in the next room.

Here's the fuselage. I faked some panel lines (with pencil and pre-shading) because I found the egg plastic did not like being scribed. Or, also possible, I'm a horrible scriber. The color is actually red, but I couldn't for the life of me get rid of the PINK color of the photo. The black thing on top is a radome.

Side view:

Front view (the thing on the front is the door. I'd planned on actually building a door and full interior but the crappiness of the plastic stopped that idea):

Here's the engine nacelle. Again, it isn't that pink.

This is the rear. The black bits are cut-outs where the propeller blades will go:

This is the intake. It features the only cannibalized part on the entire model so far (a spare bogie from some tank or another):

The propeller blades were going to be problematic from the start. I thought I'd try simple and made some out of wood strips. The result was... not good:

So, I tried again in plastic. Stuck, I hit the web and found a picture of a new Hamilton-Sundstrand prop and tried to copy that. Here's an in-progress pic. The tough thing is getting the four blades to be even closely related to each other. Next time, I'm doing one and then casting the rest out of resin:

The cockpit is turning out well, I added the instrument panel:

Here's a shot of the instruments. I designed up a set of instruments in Adobe Illustrator and, since I didn't have any decal paper yet, so I used sticker paper. The effect is not bad. The only problem is you can't move the stickers around like you can with decals.

Another view:

A close up, looking forward through the cabin door, showing the raised bits (fire suppression t-handle, throttles and some buttons). After I looked at this shot, I realized I had to re-position some of the instrument clusters as they are a bit askew:

That's all for now. I'm coating it in future and plan on assembling the engine soon. The contest is two weeks from today. I hope I at least get a nod or two from the old hands.

Sweet Enemy bought me a wicked cool Japanese model for my birthday. Oh, it is sweet. I can hardly wait to build it. But, since it is from SE, and it's hard to find, I'm putting it at the bottom of my stash so that my skills will be up to it when I get to it. Hopefully.

Listening to while posting: Scherzo: Allegro & Finale by Beethoven (played by the London Symphony Orchestra)