orca build

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by lizzienewell, Aug 25, 2005.

  1. lizzienewell

    lizzienewell Member

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    John asked me to post pictures of the work on this. So here they are.

    My plan is to enter about five models in the Cascadia con art show. These things are fiendishly hard to do. I don't think I would do this just for fun.

    One wing takes me about ten hours. The wing supports are .06 x .156 strips of styrene. The hinges are .03 styrene strips with 24 gage wire as the pins. I've got the airfoil shapes(there must be an official word for these) made of cardstock and wire. I print earch shape in two pieces on cardstock and then laminate them together with wire in between the wire goes through holes in the wing supports so that each airfoil shape pivots.

    The part at the end fans out. I'm calling these the pinion plated but I'm not sure that is the best term. They pivot on a wire pin and are kept in place by string threaded ala window blind. It's tough to get the little knots in the right place without pulling through. I'm tying each knot in a loop so that the loop gets laminated and it won't pull through. After several experiements I'm using waxed nyon beading thread(size F #4). The crochet thread stretched to much and was hard to get through the holes.

    Thanks to whomever told me about pin vices. I've got one and it's works great. Also thanks to someone for the pointer on getting hole punches for paper from leather supply places.

    I'm going to cover the wings with stretchy nylon knit from socks and stockings. The wing on the starboard has the skin. It looks bad so far. After all that work it looks like a waded sock.

    I'm going to try again with paper over the trailing and leading edge so that the skin is smooth an with using a thinner sock. It may look best with a fabric that is semi-transparent so that you can see the internal structure of the wing. Maybe it isn't realistic but if this craft were really functional it would have a piezoelectric skin made or arimid fiber and that doesn't exist yet.

    When I bring the scale up 300% I going to make the wing supports out of carbon fiber. The local Hobbycraft has it in strips. I'm not sure if wire will still work as the hinge pins or if I should use small bolts. I'm thinking that wire will still work best but I will increase the size of the gage. I would still like to find nylon bushings but haven't seen any that are small enough.

    The other picture is off my work on a display stand. It's got one of my small initial models. The base is a cut up melamine shelf. I wanted to get blocks of Corian but Lowes won't sell it in sizes that small, they have a 10 square foot minimum and the stuff costs 50 per square foot. The clerk seemed half asleep and couldn't even give me a price quote. I was hoping to get outdated sample tiles. I hate how stores try to determine what you are going to do with materials. I don't see why they won't cut me out a square foot block of Corian. I'd be willing to pay more for the extra labor but I don't want to spend 500 for one block.

    Enough of the complaining. I'm going to cover the cut ends of the laminate with paper. I'll write the title of the piece their.

    When the size goes up I'll make the support out of a steel rod that I will cold bend.

    I'm still trying to figure out what the propulsors should look like. I'd like those little toy rockets that you fill with water and pump up but with a radio controlled valve.

    If this craft were for real it would have a propulsor that pumps itself up and then releases pressure on command. I think this might be more efficiant than a combustion engine or combustion jet because it wouldn't have as much waste heat.

    This may be science fiction but I seem to be getting closer to something that will actually fly.


    Well that is what is going on. I will post more pictures when I get the wings all assembled.

    Lizzie
  2. Bowdenja

    Bowdenja Active Member

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    Hey Lizzie

    Looks pretty good so far. An idea for the stand......MDF. The stuff is pretty dense, shapes well with power tools and take paint nicely. You might even try a faux marble effect. It comes in 3/4" 4'x8' sheets but they usually have it cut up in smaller pieces at a little more price.
    Not sure if you do the woodworking thing, but they might cut it up there for you. That is if you can wake the guy up.
    And for the flexable part of the airfoil.......what about a knit material like what they use for shirts, then you could use some fabric glue or maybe even stitch it up on the open end.

    john
  3. Bowdenja

    Bowdenja Active Member

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    Hey Lizzie

    Looks pretty good so far. An idea for the stand......MDF. The stuff is pretty dense, shapes well with power tools and take paint nicely. You might even try a faux marble effect. It comes in 3/4" 4'x8' sheets but they usually have it cut up in smaller pieces at a little more price.
    Not sure if you do the woodworking thing, but they might cut it up there for you. That is if you can wake the guy up.
    And for the flexable part of the airfoil.......what about a knit material like what they use for shirts, then you could use some fabric glue or maybe even stitch it up on the open end.

    john
  4. lizzienewell

    lizzienewell Member

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    What is MDF? I looked rather thoroughly at both Low's and Home Depot for stuff that might work. I will try Cadellac Plastic next. Thank you for the suggestion.

    I have the wordworking tools. I cleared off my miter saw and drill press to do the stand. I prefer to keep things as simple as possible as far as display goes.

    Sewing the socks works well. I put my sewing machine on zig-zag. (Yeah I've got all the toys and tools. What other woman has a sewing machine and a drill press?) I found that it I stuff a piece of cardstock in the sock it keeps it from stenching around to much while I sew.

    I found a great pair of socks yesterday that has a bit of metallic thread knitted into the nylon and lycra. I keeping my finger crossed that it will look good.
  5. Bowdenja

    Bowdenja Active Member

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    Good answer Rick....good answer.

    Lizzie it would be where the plywood is kept. The stores down here have a selection that is already cut into smaller sheets. 2'x4' or 4'x4'.

    john
  6. Willja67

    Willja67 Member

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    I don't know if there are as many new homes being built in Alaska as they are in Utah but if you want material for your display stand go find some homes that are nearing completion (preferably with the finish work going on) and raid the scrap piles. I've done finish work and I can tell you we threw out a lot of mdf and and other material you might be interested in.
  7. lizzienewell

    lizzienewell Member

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    Thanks for the hints John, Will, and Rick.

    I better go scrap heap rading soon before our construction season ends.

    I didn't see much MDF at Lowe's. I suppose if I can't find it thick enough that I can laminate sheets myself. I can get plastic veneer to put over the top or else do a good job with sanding an spray paint.

    If I can get a nice chunk of plastic material then I can do the cutting and sanding and dispense with the painting. I don't have a stationary belt sander so my edges tend to get rounded when I sand. I suppose that I can glue cardstock over the base for a surface that matches the model. Hmm I could also do jpg photos of water on the base. Then it wouldn't matter if the base is particle board or MDF.

    If I buy the material maybe I can get it cut into twelve inch strips so that I can handle it better and cut it on a miter saw. I have a table saw but if it is that heavy I will have a hard time controlling it through the saw. Somehow I've never liked table saws well and always think through what I'm going to do with it. Maybe when I get rich I should replace it with a panel saw. I don't like moving large piece of lumber into the saw. I'd rather move the saw into the lumber. The fence on my table saw is out of true so if I don't check it carefully with a square the saw binds on the work.

    I have lots of tools because my late husband and I did lots of building work together. Our courtship consisted of building a garage together. I'd sure like to ask his advice.

    Lizzie
  8. SCEtoAux

    SCEtoAux Member

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    Sign painters sometimes use MDF with a high quality paper covering. Maybe you can find a sign painting business in Alaska that uses MDF and scrounge some scraps from them. :)
  9. Rick Thomson

    Rick Thomson Member

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    Just noticed this thread and saw the photos of the model. An interesting build, is it supposed to be a cross between a killer whale, a bird and an aircraft (sort of a bionic life form)? Did you design it from scratch, or is it to be found on the web?

    Looks nice at any rate.