Jun 302017


Japan reveals plans to put a man on moon by 2030

The article is *incredibly* lean on details. Apparently they plan on joining in on the planned lunar orbiting space station that NASA will spend a lot of money studying but will eventually abandon just before actually bending metal.

Due to the lack of details on motive, one can only assume the Kaiju thing. Of course, they might also be going to the moon to look for tentacle pron.

 Posted by at 10:32 am
Jun 302017

NASA Denies Conspiracy Theory About Kidnapped Children Working As Mars Colony Slaves

If you haven’t heard about this, you’ll be shocked, SHOCKED to hear that it revolves around Alex Jones. He had a guest on his radio show who claimed that NASA was shipping child slave labor to Mars colonies because, well, reasons. Normally NASA ignores this sort of nonsense, but this time they responded. I suspect they did so not because of a perceived need to set the record straight, but because it’s funny.


 Posted by at 10:16 am
Jun 292017

I’ve been working away on the first several of hopefully a sizable series of CAD models that will be turned into 1/24 scale model kits. The theme of the series: large and entertaining bombs. This series of models will be produced by and available through Masterpiece Models.

The first model, which I’m very nearly finished working on, is the GBU-43/B Massive Ordnance Air Blast, a.k.a. MOAB, the “Mother Of All Bombs.” This one is to be made available not only in 1/24, but also 1/48 and 1/72 for use with available C-130 kits. Here are some renders of the CAD model. Colors indicate parts breakdown (subject to some revision):

The MOAB model will come with grid fin parts for display as either stowed or deployed. The cradle is also to be supplied.

The second model, which I’m less finished with, is the thermonuclear AN602 “Tsar Bomb,” designed for 100 megatons, tested at around 50. This one is likely to be released solely in 1/24 scale.

Other bombs currently planned include the BLU-82 “Daisy Cutter,” the Mk 17 hydrogen bomb (America’s heaviest nuke at 42,000+ pounds, yield of about 15 megatons) and the GBU-57 Massive Ordnance Penetrator.

What other Large Bombs would you like to see in 1/24 scale? The US Mk 41 (most powerful US nuke at 25 megatons)? The British Tallboy and/or Grand Slam? The US T-12 Cloudmaker (because Grand Slam was just too petite)? The Tarzon guided bomb? Feel free to make suggestions.

 Posted by at 10:53 pm
Jun 292017

So yesterday I wandered down to the WalMart in Perry to get some groceries. As I approached the front doors, a guy dashed out at a dead run, with a WalMart employee hot on his heels… but the employee basically stopped at the door. Seemed likely to me that it was a shoplifter. I didn’t feel bad about not going to chase the criminal down my own self. I wasn’t all that close, and the guy was *fast.* I’d’ve had trouble chasing him down in my car.

So, that over, I went into the store and did my shopping.

About fifteen minutes later I’m on my way out. As I approach the doors, a car zipped past the doors at an unreasonable rate of speed; following close behind it was a police SUV, lights and sirens going. I figured it was a speeder getting pulled over by the cops. Seemed odd to be that far into the WalMart parking lot, but oh well.  A moment later when I stepped outside, I looked off to the left and the car had pulled into a parking spot; the police SUV had pulled in behind it, boxing it in. As I was parked nowhere near that ongoing incident, I gave it no further thought.

I had no more than crossed across the “road” right in front of the WalMart entrance when the same guy I saw earlier went dashing back into the WalMart entrance. With the cop right behind him. Both were moving at speeds that made me feel real, real old.

OK, sez I, this might be worth watching. So I turned around to go back into the WalMart to see what might be going on in there. When I saw through the open doors the same guy yet again, heading towards the exit at a high rate of speed. But this time, before he got to the door the same WalMart employee I saw earlier intercepted him. It was a collision between someone small and fast against someone slow and quite a lot bigger. Speedy McShoplifter hit the ground and the cop was on him like white on rice. As I stood like a damnfool slackjawed toooorist in the WalMart entrance, the police officer managed to get the guy cuffed. That seemed to bring the festivities to an end, took the zip right out of the feller.

After more police showed up and  things settled down, I briefly spoke to the WalMart employee. My first bit to confirm was if that was indeed the same guy I saw earlier; turns out, yup, it was. The short story related to me was that he was indeed shoplifting and was chased out, then led the police on a merry chase around town… and then went back to the very same WalMart, apparently “looking for his girlfriend.”

I have the sneaking suspicion that interesting chemistry might be involved.

Because that’s what all the cool kids do these days, rather than making myself useful I took a few photos with my cell phone. Only one was any good, so here it is. There is almost certainly some interesting video of the incident… when the police officer grabbed the runner, a bodycam hit the floor. The WalMart employee I mentioned picked it up and held it afterwards, pointing it at the cop & the perp. That it came unglued when things got interesting is perhaps not a spectacular sign.

Shoplifters do not have my sympathy. Shoplifters who run back into the very store they just got chased out of? Yeahhh… what’s the *opposite* of sympathy?

 Posted by at 8:10 pm
Jun 292017

For years I’ve been trying to find a cost effective way to create a convincing “gold” surface finish on models… not “gold colored,” or “gold paint,” but something that actually looks like gold. Chrome can be adequately taken care of with Alclad and a few other high end paints, and there is a complex system available that seems to do a damn fine job of laying down an actual thin layer of silver, but gold remains elusive.

One substance I recently tried, and was unsurprised to find didn’t work, is the Rustoleum “Mirror effect” paint. If you spray either the gold or silver onto a surface, the sprayed surface just looks like gold or silver paint. but here’s the selling point: if you spray it onto glass, the *other* side should actually look like a mirror. Kind of a neat trick, but not something I generally have much use for… the *outside* of a model is what matters to me, and I hardly need to fill my house with mirrors.

But I did try it out on a few sheets of acetate (or maybe mylar), just to see what the result was… and I was surprised to see it’s actually pretty spiffy. The sheets in question are 12X18 transparencies, printed with black-line diagrams; these were intended for use in creating cyanotype blueprints. But these sheets were abandoned for various reasons… the cyanotypes looked unimpressive, or the subject didn’t seem all that great, whatever. And so they’ve been sitting forgotten over the years. And they were sitting where the cats could get on ’em and scratch ’em up, so they were of no particular use to me. But then I sprayed them with the silver (and the F-1 diagram with the gold) and the results are really quite impressive.

They look perhaps not so much like mirrored glass as really, really polished stainless steel. The scratches and scuff marks – some in the shape of cat paws, because I guess cat paws are rough enough to scratch acetate – actually add a little something to them. Take a look at let me know if this sort of thing seems appealing and worth $10-$20 each for. I honestly don’t know, but they do look pretty interesting to my eye.

These are just the sheets I had sitting around that I’d written off. Obviously I’d do other subjects… the ones on the cyanotype catalog, of course, along with others. The Apollo 11 plaque seems like it’d be pretty snazzy done this way. Seems maybe maps might be interesting done this way. Put into some sort of production, the sheets would of course be newly printed, pristine and printed in reverse, so that the mirroring paint would go on the same side as the black-line ink. This paint is pretty fragile (low-tack tape designed to not pull up paint pulls this stuff right up), so that might mean that large format prints which would have to be shipped rolled might be impossible.

 Posted by at 7:35 pm
Jun 292017

Athens teen’s shooting death linked to feud between transgender groups, police say

The weekend fatal shooting of a teen at an apartment complex near downtown Athens was the culmination of a feud between two transgender groups…

Rayquann Deonte Jernigan, (a Klingon name??) 17, who was known to friends by the chosen name of Ava Le’Ray Barrin, (Romulan??) was killed Sunday morning by a single gunshot fired by 21-year-old Jalen Breon Brown (Andorian perhaps??)…

So Kirk & co. show up, get caught in the middle of the situation, spend two acts extricating themselves and finally escape, shaking their heads in disbelief at a situation that simply makes no sense… and glad to be out of it. Only McCoy has the rank and courage to bring up the makeout session Kirk had with one of the locals, upon which mention Kirk turns green, tells him to shut up and promptly leaves the bridge. He breaks into Scottie’s quarters and downs half the whisky.

 Posted by at 12:54 pm
Jun 292017

Teen YouTuber Shoots and Kills Boyfriend in Video Stunt, Police Say

The stunt? That old classic… hold a book up in front of your chest and have your girlfriend shoot you in the heart with a pistol. With the right book and the right pistol, this might be survivable. The book used? A volume of an encyclopedia. So… not necessarily the worst choice. I’ve seen some beefy encyclopedia volumes. The pistol? A .22 would probably be good. A .380 might be survivable. A 9mm… you’re starting to stretch your luck. So what’d they actually use?

A Desert Eagle chambered in .50 AE.

 Posted by at 2:19 am