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Discussion in 'Dioramas & Displays' started by JohnReid, Jul 7, 2007.
Do I ever have a new appreciation for all those who design buildings and such!
This little mock up took me almost 2 weeks to figure out(must be gettin old I guess)
What you see here is the different levels that had to be worked out before any other work could begin.The base itself will have to be in multi-layers of plywood and then covered with landscaping materials.I can already see nice possibilities of all kinds for this arrangement.
The Flier's wingspan I will cut back to 25 feet to better fit the backyard(something like the Curtiss's Racer).The outer perimeter is actually part of the base which will be added to the 4X5 foot diorama and probably painted matte black or a dark natural wood like ebony or dark walnut.
The car will probably be a Model T in keeping with the middle class storyboard idea.The outer fence is 6 feet high while the inner fences are 4.
Now it is on to work on the backwall facade and where to put all the doors and windows.I left room behind the windows for inside lighting.
It has been brought to my attention that the backyard is way too big for a typical English storyline .Therefore that will narrow it down to the US or Canada.However I could add an Enlgish flavor by using a poster that was used in North America to recruit Britishers living here.
I think your dog is not that far from the reality;-)
What to leave in,what to leave out?
The older I get the more I wonder will I ever live long enough to see all my projects finished,well the answer of course is no because I keep starting new ones.This has especially been on my mind recently when I was debating whether to start another long term project or not or finish up what I already have on the go.Sure,all my life I have known that we are all just one heart beat away and have had many close calls to prove it.So what !you say ,that is just the nature of life.Why should an artists life be any different?Maybe being involved in the creative life and being goal oriented I sometimes tend to lose sight of the process.It is the process of creating that is the reward not the end game.
I have always known this but as you get older you tend to want to finish things up.
Last night I watched a tv show about what would happen if man ceased to exist today?It kind of brought me back on track.We know that nothing lasts forever but this show really brought it home.In about 10,000 years there would be little trace that we ever existed.In a 100 years most of the history of our existence would be gone.Books,films,DVD's,computers etc... Gone forever.
So where does that leave us? It is the process that matters,the fun of creating in the here and now.Forget about finishing ,that is just an illusion.Funny how a program like that can put things back into perspective.Now I will shut up,get down off my soapbox and go have some creative fun.Who cares if it ever gets finished. Not me anymore!
Modifying the Wright wing.
Using the same plans and jig,I am modifying the Wright's wings width and length to look more like the Curtiss Racer.The length is easy as I just stop building at the closest rib position but for the width I used the same jig and repositioned the trailing edge using a blackened brass rod super glued to the rib.After removing the wing from the jig, the old trailing edge portion will be simply cut off.Remember this is my backyard version of the racer so artistic license rules.This airplane is only meant to be a another prop for the storyline,my version of the racer using the knowledge of the day.No rules and regs which suits me just fine.
To give you an idea of just how lax things were in those days ,the story of how the Custiss Pusher became "headless" is a wonderful example.It seems that one day Lincoln Beachey was to give a live flying exhibition before a large ,all ready gathered crowd.Somehow the head assembly got damaged and had to be removed.Not wanting to disappoint the crowd and the promoter by having to return the gate fees,Beachey decided to fly anyway.He found that the airplane actually flew better like this and so was born the "headless" pusher.
The world's first "hot" airplane.
This airplane is probably aviation's first attempt to build a "hot" airplane.Clip wing,large engine,large control surfaces and built expressly as a racer to fly faster at low levels.Building a similar airplane to the racer, I really get an idea of how far they were trying to push the envelope all in one foul swoop.This airplane was probably the first to be built with speed in mind.The forerunner of all that was to come later and which still continues to this day.Guys working and re-working their airplanes to get the last ounce of speed out of them.
The backyard flier also represents all the EAA guys to come later.Those who create and build their own backyard or basement fliers to this very day.I know because I was one of them.
Just imagine in those early days of adding and subtracting,modifying and re-modifying and then "taking her up" to see if it works! A day when every pilot was a test pilot.
The Impossible Dream.
Of course for every success there were many failures.Probably none of these early fliers ever got off the ground in their backyard machines but their hearts were in the right place.
Where would we be without the dreamers? especially in those early years.
Please note:If anyone has any pictures of other backyard fliers, please let me know where I could find them.
The not so impossible dream!
Speaking about dreams,in the 60's this was my impossible dream,to restore a 1929 Travel Air 4000.By 1965 this is where we(my dad and me and our friend Al Pow) were at after a few years of on and off restoration attempts.The rest of this basket case was scrapped and everything from here on in was scratchbuilt.We were lucky in that the basic tubing of the fuselage was in great shape and it gave us a place to start.
Upper and lower wings woodwork is now finished and temporarily in a jig.Next step will be to prepare the wings for the strut and wire fittings.There are no internal drag and anti-drag wing wires required and no dihedral.The large inter-wing ailerons will have to be built and provided for with fittings etc....
Fortunately during this era the Wright's were involved in a lot of litigation about their wing warping patent ,I say fortunately as it forced others to think beyond this end of the road concept of longitudinal control. However, unfortunately it did have a somewhat negative effect of slowing down aeronautical progress in North America for awhile.
Yes it is 1/16th scale! the clothes pegs are of the miniature variety,not your standard peg.
The distance between the wings has been established and everything squared up.The vertical strut positions were located and coffee stir sticks set in place where the struts will go.The wing tips will be square and the outboard struts will be flush with the last rib.The center section area is five ribs wide while the middle and outboard sections are four each.
I have left myself lots of room to work inside the jig as I anticipate lots of "I wish that I had thought of that before" moments.The jig also affords great protection for the delicate wing structure and probably will be used until just before completion of the model.