Monday, 28 December 2009

...and Back to the Drawing Board!

Good morning,

Well, the model is coming together quite well, 'cept, as it does, little things make themselves apparent that could be improved.

  • Paint the boiler facings before sealing them in the hull!

  • The boilers themselves are a lot easier placed when they're not! Leave them out.

  • The driver could do with some sort of steering wheel to hold on to.

  • The round portholes in the bridge are too hard to cut out - replace them with view slits.

  • Talking of view slits, the hull could do with a couple down each side, else it's going to be too dark to see the crew inside. And, from a 'real world' perspective, the crew might like to know a little more of what's going on outside!

  • The turret, hmmm...

    • The top needs to be in one piece, not the piece and a bit that Pepakura has made it.

    • For some reason the edges don't meet at the back. Not sure why, but I'll fix that...if I can.

  • I'll put some sort of air vent in the deck, behind the turret. Again, this will be primarily to let in more light, but also to let the 'heat' from the 'boilers' escape.

  • The funnel box assembly at the back needs to be separate. I can't figure out how to make it as it has been printed at the moment.

On a more positive note, the turret dimensions have worked out to be about right. Yes, it is a tight fit to stuff the Gatling gun, 'carriage' and gunner in there, but it yay, it works.

And the main gun looks good, now that I've rotated the mounts 90 degrees to attach them to the inside of the hull. (I hope I can pull it out this 'Mark I' without breaking off the mounts).

The crew all fit too - indeed the artillery...stoker? Swabber? The dude with the big cotton bud thing to clean out the barrel - looks great as an engineer. He's even got a lever to hold on to!

As for the track assembly, well I've had a bit of a brain wave. Ages back I got a heap of the old Airfix Ancient British chariots with those big bulky solid wooden wheels. I replaced them with 15mm ACW artillery wheels...

...but kept the originals, just in case. Well, this might well be one of those cases! I may redesign the running gear with them in mind...

All in all, I'm very pleased with how it's come together, now it's time to pull it apart and start again!


Saturday, 26 December 2009

Right, Lets Get On With It...

Good afternoon,

Well, I've printed the bits, only to find that 33% of the Pepakura 2D net/model was still too big. So, after a bit of fiddling, it turns out that a scale of 25.5% printed out at the right dimensions. So, here they are...

I can figure out the main components (hull, bridge, turret, boilers) but some I can't. So, we'll see what we will see...

Next step is to glue these to card, cut out, score, fold and glue. Hmmm...


Thursday, 24 December 2009


Good afternoon,

Well, I decided that, for Pepakura to print this thing better, I'd pull it apart. In doing so I was able to place a couple of boilers and their bulk heads.

Hope I can actually glue this thing together!

Oh, and Merry Christmas!


Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Oh, So That's Why It's So Big!

Good evening,

I went into school this morning to physically print off my Steam Tank model. All 15 A3 pages worth. Ok, thought I, and I grabbed some big sheets of card.

Home I went, lined up all the sheets on the lounge floor, and thought...hang on, this is huge! And so it was.

For some reason, Pepakura has printed my Sketchup model at three times the size I designed it to be. So, I printed it (as a PDF file) at 33%, and lo, by holding the ruler up to the PDF image (@100%) it seems to be right.

So back to school I'll have to go...



By the way, I've added some more virtual crew...

...and yes, I know the Turret Gunner has his feet poking through the floor!

Monday, 21 December 2009

To Air Vent or Not to Air Vent...

...the answer is the later!

Good morning,

I spent this morning fiddling around with the Steam Tank. Lowered the deck, while keeping the sides - looks more ship like - added a boiler bulkhead, and then found and added some air vents for the crew compartment...

"Cool," thought I, "now to print it...". Hmmm, with the air vents the paper model suddenly ballooned out to 23 pages with lots of little fiddly bits. Far too complicated.

So I've decided to print the model sans air vents, and hope to find someone to make some air vents (and funnels, if I can) for me. I hope. Those vents look way cool!


Sunday, 20 December 2009

3D Modelling...

...can be a wonderful thing!

Continuing to hack away at my Steam Tank in Google Sketchup, and it occurred to me that if I plonk some appropriately scaled miniatures in the model I would be able to adjust the view ports so's the minis can see out.

I tried to find a seated man for the Gatling turret, but it proved too fiddly to scale down to the same size as a 20mm miniature. Should be right though.

Now if I could only figure out which bit on the 2D paper print out corresponds to which bit on the 3D model. (Speaking of which, I've somehow managed to reduced it to 12 A3 pages now!)


Saturday, 19 December 2009



Just added a couple of funnels. Whether I can fold them out of cardboard, now that's another matter...


And yes, I know the tracks look a bit naff, but I'm hoping that with an extra strip of corrugated card will help...

20mm VSF Mixed Media Steam Tank

Good evening,

I know I should have been adding text to the photos of my last couple of posts, but, well, school wound up toward the end of the year instead of winding down, and, well, I was distracted by making this...

I constructed this model in Google Sketchup and have exported the model as an open source 3d file format that Pepakura Paper Designer 3 can understand, which in turn converted the 3d model into a paper net - a 15 A3 page paper model, no less!

As indicated in the above images, I'm planning to arm and crew the tank with HaT's new Colonial Artillery, Gatling Gun and associated officers.

I may even make a couple of boilers to sit inside complete with a stoker. The funnels are most likely going to be drinking straws sticking up from out the back, and, hopefully some deck railings out of 1/32nd inch brass rod.

I'll head back to school over the next couple of days to print it out and grab some card to paste the sheets thereon. Then we'll see just how easy this thing'll be to assemble...


Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Monday, 7 December 2009