An early look at the next US Spacecraft Projects:
I think I’m pretty good at 2D drafting and at 3D CAD modeling for 3D printing and such. But I’ve very little experience with texture mapping and rendering for “art.” But while modeling the JPL interstellar precursor spacecraft for the next issue of USSP, it occurred to me that the model didn’t look half bad just with basic coloring of the parts. While this may work for spacecraft, I don’t imagine it’d be all that wonderful for aircraft.
The JPL spacecraft was to be propelled by a bank of 40 ion engines. I tried to simulate that with lights in the engines, but that did some *wacky* stuff… light shining *through* solid objects, not casting shadows, all kinds of stuff that Just Ain’t Right. I don’t suppose my ancient copy of Rhinoceros 3D is really meant for that sort of thing. So I simulated the ion engine exhaust with simple transparent cylinders. Not the greatest but… does it look like it’s doing the job?
UPDATE: A better version. See comments for process.
You may have noticed some older US Bomber/Fighter/Etc. Projects sales posts appearing at the top of the page. This is courtesy of the “Stick this post to the front page” option that I can apply to posts, a feature I’ve ignored until very recently. The purpose here is to remind folks of stuff I’ve published; once a post has slid off the front page, it’s pretty much gone as far as most visitors are concerned. Please note that each post has a date on it; and older sales-posts will have text like “Now Available” removed from them, leaving that only for brand-new posts.
I admit that the USBP series looks kinda… bland. It’s text and line drawings; not a whole lot can be done to jazz that up. Especially since I have no head for graphics design whatsoever apart from layout diagrams.
Still, one reader sent me a mockup of a revised cover of USBP #18:
Things are moved around a little bit, but the obvious change is the addition of color. The suggestion was also made to consider color-coding each title in the USXP series. Just off the top of my head, I came up with:
Bombers: Olive Drab
Launch Vehicles: Blue on bottom, transitioning to black at the top
Fighters: slightly bluish gray (like the F-15 or F-22)
The USBP#18 cover was re-done to reflect this, thusly:
Thoughts? Is this more appealing?How about color-coding… good idea or not? And if so, what colors?
I tried something vaguely like this once before, with USBP#05.
Just brought Raedthinn home from the vet. He is, it seems, All Better… but that came at a substantial cost. In fact, two days at the vet cost more than a months work on USFP01 and USVP01 brought in. Behold:
So… time for another sale. For the next day or two or three, I’m running another Downloadable Stuff Sale. This applies to all APR’s and articles, USxPs, Air & Space Drawings & Documents, ANED01. As per usual… make your purchase using the Paypal buttons, and I’ll refund the sales difference. Up to $50: 10% off From $50.01 to $75: 15% off More than $75: 20% off
UPDATE: Sale has ended as of 2/24/2016
And as always, feel free to toss something into the Tip Jar if’n yer of a mind to:
US Spacecraft Projects #04, the Lander Special is now available (see HERE for the entire series). Issue #04 includes:
- GE Electrically Propelled Cargo Vehicle: A lunar lander with a nuclear reactor and ion engines to reduce the cost of lunar logistics
- Douglas LASS: Landing an S-IVb stage on the moon
- Convair PLAME: VTOL crew return with jet engines
- North American Mars Excursion Module: the iconic conical Mars lander
- Martin-Marietta Ballistic NIMF: A nuclear “hopper”
- Early LEM: One of the first recognizable designs, by Maxime Faget
- ROMBUS: probably the largest lunar lander seriously proposed
- Boeing Lander Module 2: A recent Mars crew lander
USSP #04 can be downloaded as a PDF file for only $5:
US Transport Projects #05 is now available (see HERE for the entire series). Issue #05 includes:
- Boeing Model 820-100: The B-52 can haul more than bombs…
- Lockheed Nuclear Tug: Want to tow two C-5s across an ocean?
- Martin Super Ocean Transport: A WWII-era design for a post-war giant passenger transport
- HOT EAGLE: 13 Marines to Benghazi in minutes
- Sikorsky SST: An early supersonic transport concept
- Lifting Body Cargo Airplane: A wartime design for a multibody design with a separate cargo module
- Resource Air Carrier: A giant “flying pipeline” to haul petroleum
- Boeing Model 763-165: A side-by-side New Large Airplane design
USTP #05 can be downloaded as a PDF file for only $4:
This set of illustrations took distressingly long to come together, a lot of that time being research. Issue 4 of US Spacecraft Projects will, as previously promised, be all about “landers,” an admittedly somewhat vague descriptor. Still a fair bit of work to do, but at least the basics are all in place.
It dawns on me that today is a holiday of some note. It also dawns on me that I have bills to pay.
So, until midnight-ish (mountain time), I’m running a sale on all US Aerospace Projects and Aerospace Projects Review downloadable issues. Still can’t run a convenient Paypal “coupon” or any such thing, so as with previous sales, you buy something and I’ll refund you the difference. So, for the duration of the sale, get 20% off all APR and USXP orders of $10 or more. And get 25% off for all orders over $100.
Sale has ended.