Feb 202018

From Those Were The Days… currently on eBay is a truly impressive piece:

Douglas Aircraft Co 1960’s Skeletal Wood Model of the C-5 Cargo Proposal LARGE

The Buy-It-Now price is a substantial fifteen grand. It shows the internal structure of the Douglas proposal of the CX-HLS, what became the C-5, at fairly large scale. More pics after the break.

Computer graphics are great. But they would not compare to seeing something like this set up as part of a sales display. Of course, you can’t exactly email this thing as a PDF…

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 Posted by at 4:38 pm
Feb 172018

There are two things at work here:

  1. Toys have in general improved in artistic quality and detail
  2. The target audience back in the day was 10. The target audience remains the same people, who have grown older and generally more wealthy in the intervening decades.

The Vintage Collection Jabba’s Sail Barge (The Khetanna)

Hasbro has set up their own form of Kickstarter. If they can get 5,000 people willing to pony up $500, they will produce this “toy” of the Sail Barge slight over *49* inches in length. If they don’t reach the goal, those who signed up won’t be charged. As with Kickstarter, this seems like a fair way to test the market for something that could either be a winner or a disaster.

I’ve never been a big fan of the Sail Barge, but I hope they do well. If this works, it seems like they might go to the next obvious step and do a proper scale version of the Millennium Falcon. And if that works… a Star Destroyer. That would only be, what, 293 feet long.

Back when Star Wars came out, *I* was the exact target audience and boy howdy did I want one of the die cast Star Destroyers. And man, those original toys were *garbage* compared to what they’re able to produce today.



 Posted by at 6:12 pm
Jan 312018

Recently sold on ebay was an apparently old display model. It came without markings, stand or engine nacelles, which were obviously formerly pinned to the rear fuselage in the usual bizjet position. So just what it is is unknown, but it looks too good to be Just Some Guys kitbash. But what it *is* is a headscratcher. It’s clearly a B-1 bomber forward fuselage grafted to a bizjet fuselage, but for what purpose I can’t guess. It doesn’t make sense to use a supersonic bombers cockpit as the cockpit of a small corporate jet, even as a way to utilize existing manufacturing infrastructure. Might it have been meant as a training plane, to teach future B-1 pilots the fine art of flying a Bone? A flying laboratory for the B-1 cockpit to make sure it was set up right?

Or did someone down at the model shop just get a little likkered up?

It appears t be a B-1A cockpit, dating it to the mid/late 70’s.

 Posted by at 10:24 pm
Jan 222018

Some while back I tried to rationalize the size of the Orville based on a cutaway shown on bridge displays. I did a serviceable job, IMO, given the data at hand… and with the caveat that going in I *knew* the diagram as shown to be wrong. Following that I was waiting for the “World of Orville” book, hoping it would come right out and say how big the ship was. When i heard that it gave no such dimensions, I was disappointed. This morning, however, I found out that the book has a scaled diagram of the bridge. And since the bridge is visible from the outside of the ship, I re-scaled the ship. Here’s what I used:

My assumption here is that the ellipse of the bridge dome is essentially the same dimensions as the ellipse of the bridge “footprint” shown in the diagram. The bridge ellipse is about 48.4 feet long, per the diagram. The bridge ellipse on my model is 6.72 mm long. The ship model as a whole is 240.1 mm long. So if 6.72 mm = 48.4 feet, then 240.1 mm = 1729 feet, or 527 meters. This is substantially bigger than the 337 meters I’d previously estimated, but it does mesh a whole lot better with what’s seen on screen.

1/350 scale: 59.3 inches
1/1000: 20.75 inches
1/1400: 14.8 inches
1/2500: 8.3 inches

Clearly, the proper scale for this model is 1/350. But that might wind up being a bit on the spendy size. So… who agrees with my assessment? Who disagrees? What scale y’all want?

 Posted by at 1:34 pm
Dec 312017

While poking around one of my old computers I found the partially finished 3D CAD model of the Martin “Aldebaran” I made some years ago for my NPP book. I’ll use the model to create diagrams for the book, in hopes that someday I’ll finish the damn thing, but I’m curious if there might be interest in physical models of the thing. Let me know. I might take a stab at this with Shapeways or some such.

 Posted by at 1:13 pm
Dec 222017

Basically all that’s left is the shuttlebay and surroundings.

So who here would be interested in a set of plans once it’s all done? Going from a 3D model to 2D diagrams is, from one point of view, as simple as typing in one command. But making a *good* set of plans from that is a bucket of work, since a lot of lines vanish and a lot of excess lines are thrown in, so I’d be interested in the level of interest.


 Posted by at 2:23 am
Dec 182017

A lot of time went into the “spine,” largely because the contours are complex and the details are a bit difficult to suss out. I’ve finally declared victory on that part and have started in on detailing the rim and underside. Barring the unforseen, the underside should be done in the net day or three, with the aft fuselage/shuttlebay being the last section to tackle. And then… well, a bit of a wait until the book comes out in mid January. Until then, after the ship is modeled I’ll start working on a set of diagrams for some general plans.

 Posted by at 6:53 pm