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pheonix

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pheonix last won the day on December 28 2017

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About pheonix

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  1. Evening All, I have completed this one at last- my first ever attempt at a base for one of my models. This is based on contemporary photographs of the Zeppelin hangar at Seemoos Hafen, Lindau, Lake Constance where giant flying boats were built and test flown under the direction of Claudius Dornier. The turntable rotates because I mounted a small motor underneath it: the battery and switch are concealed in the rear of the display under the hangar floor. The scene depicts the launch of the Rs II in May 1917 after the engines had been fitted with cowlings. All of the features in the diorama are based on what I could see in contemporary photographs, right down to the figures of Claudius Dornier (dark suit) engineer Durr and the sailor standing by the winch shed. The furniture and boxes, etc were also present when the photographs were taken. The model aircraft build log is in the group build section of this site under Flying Boats and Floatplanes and is scratch built. The civilian figures are from Dart Castings and the naval figure from W D Models. The blank section on the side of the diorama base contains a copy of an original photograph and the following text: Zeppelin Lindau (Dornier) Rs II, Seemoos, Friedrichshafen, Lake Constance, April 1917 The Zeppelin Lindau (Dornier) Rs II (Reisenfleugzueg: giant aeroplane) is rolled out of the hangar at Seemoos for the next series of test flights after the engines have been enclosed in cowlings to try to stop them from running too cold, and to protect the valves from wind shear. Claudius Dornier (in dark grey suit), and Oberingenieur Durr watch as the machine sits on the turntable and is photographed. One of the men from the works waits by the shed to operate the winch which will let the flying boat run slowly down the slipway which had been built so that flying boats could be launched and retrieved from Lake Constance. The first of Dornier’s designs was a biplane which was wrecked in a storm before it could fly. The second was a monoplane with three Maybach engines buried in the hull driving pusher propellors via transmission shafts which started trials in May 1916. On a flight trial in July of that year the transmission shaft of the centre engine broke, severely damaging the tail boom so it was decided to rebuild the aircraft. In November 1916 the aircraft appeared from the hangar with a new hull, four engines mounted in tandem above the hull and redesigned stub wings. Originally the engines were uncovered. The model represents the aircraft as it appeared in April 1917 after engine covers had been installed. A month later the biplane elevator at the rear was replaced by simpler fins and rudders. In August 1917 the aircraft was badly damaged again during a long test flight when one of the engines backfired and shattered a propellor. A third design was close to completion by this time so this aircraft was broken up and the parts used for systematic testing, the results being applied to the design and calculation of new R planes. Thanks for looking. P
  2. Evening All, Well I am calling this finished. I still have to add the panel on the side which will have a copy of an original photo of the Rs II on the turntable and information about the aircraft and Seemoos. The final details included the pulleys on the launch ramp: these were to hold the cable which was used to lower the aircraft down the ramp to the lake and then pull it back again. The ramp was slightly curved at the top end and these pulleys obviously held the cable in the correct position: I also added a steel cable and pulley wheels on the other side of the turntable - again these are visible in the contemporary photos: The furniture was placed where I could see it in the photos and four figures placed to give an air of activity. The sailor by the door of the winch shed was based on photos of the time, the two civilians by the shed represent Claudius Dornier, (in the dark grey suit), and chief engineer Durr. These were present when the Rs II was launched and can be seen in contemporary pictures. I added the photographer because someone had to take the pictures! The civilian figures were made by Dart Castings. The last part to add was the cradle on which the aircraft was transported: Base complete! All that was needed now was the aircraft: I had drilled a hole in the hull in order that I could mount the model on the spindle of the motor and lower it on to the cradle: the fit was tight but needs to be so that when the motor is switched on the aircraft will turn, which I am pleased to report, it does. This is a large model and is therefore difficult to photograph, but I will post more photos in the completed aircraft models gallery if you are interested. Thanks for looking. P
  3. Just found this - mind if I follow along as I too enjoy the challenges offered by scratch building and oyu have some first class ideas her. Some first class modelling too. P
  4. Evening All, At last the end is in sight: I have been finishing some pieces which have I have been working on and off during the build, and have almost all of the final details completed. First up is the frame and trolley on which the aircraft was carried on the rails. I looked at as many photos as I could and came to the conclusion that frames were made individually for each aircraft. What I have produced is the best match that I can make to the photographic evidence available. The trolley was made from brass rod soldered together to make a rectangle, axles were from 60 thou plastic rod and the wheels from N guage Graham Farish accessories. I pushed the wheels off the Farish axles and back on to the longer plastic rod ones. The main sections were made from I section plastic strip and the large pads at the rear were carved from scrap balsa wood and given a couple of coats of talcum powder and dope filler before being painted. The leather straps were from 10 x 20 thou Evergreen strip. The wood in the last photo was visible in the contemporary photos - I used obechi strip to represent these beams. The arms on the sides were to allow ground crew to push the assembly on the turntable. I made some furniture which again is visible in various photos: this will be distributed over the hangar floor based on photographic evidence and will help to fill what will otherwise be large voids in the display. A couple of boxes, two trestle tables (the tops were made from mixing sticks), and some beams of wood. I have also constructed a box camera which will be present in the display. The rails have the fish plates added and have been painted and dry brushed with some rust, and are now fixed in place on the base: All that remains to add now are the pulleys on the ramp, the furniture on the hangar floor, the trolley to the turntable and some figures. Then I can mount the aircraft! Thanks for looking. P
  5. Evening All, Thanks arbrownra and Badder for dropping by and leaving kind remarks. I agree that there has been a lot of fiddly work on this project - much more than I initially thought but then that reflects my lack of experience with this kind of thing. I have never attempted anything like this before so it has been, and still is, a steep earning curve for me. However I am happy with the result so far, but the end still seems to be a long way away! I drilled some holes in the base so that the down pipes from the shed gutters could fit into them and the shed was put into place. I did assemble a winding gear from plastic rod and card but forgot to photograph it, and in any even it cannot be seen with the shed in place so it does not matter after all. I made a second set of steps and glued these into place: the set on the launch ramp are visible in photographs, but the second set by the winding shed are my best guess: ground crew had to be able to get to the shed somehow. I also made a cover for the winch cables between the shed and launch ramp - once again this is clearly visible in the photographs and was made from obechi strip and plastic card painted black, and given a dark brown acrylic wash. I have also started to make two rails which are on the edge of the platform between the shed and the left side of the display. Once again this is based on contemporary photographs and my modeller's license as I cannot be certain of the exact details. [ I have added some darker areas to parts of the sand base to give a variation in colour: natural soils would not have quite such round areas but as these are going to be covered in grass flock they will not be visible. I then dry brushed all of the wood surfaces with a mixture of dark grey and dark brown acrylic washes: I have tried to vary the density to show areas of greater wear and footfall. A door was added to the shed. Now I could add the grass flock which I mixed from several different packs. I brushed watered down white PVA glue over the sand base and liberally scattered the flock, including areas of neat flock from individual packs to give as varied a background as possible. Once again I deliberately left some areas clear where people would have walked: this too is visible on some of the photos of the original site. I have now got to put on the rails. I am using 00 guage flexible track for the rails - they are rather brassy but some paint and washes will tone them down. First though I have cut some fishplates (joining pieces) from thin brass strip and will glue these to the sides of the rail at intrevals of three scale meters - again a distance estimated from photographs. The parts look like this before assembly: More later when I have finished the rails and made some furniture and the carrying frame for the flying boat. Thanks for looking. P
  6. Evening All, Thanks James for your comment: I cannot provide copies of photographs that I am using because they are published in the DataFile number 136 Dornier Flying Boats by R. Rimmel and I am not sure about copyright restrictions. However if you search for Zeppelin-Dornier Rs II or Rs III flying boat images you will find several photos of these machines at Seemoos, some of them on the turntable. There is one image in particular of the Rs II which is taken from the rear which shows the turntable and ramp very clearly: in fact it was just that photo which gave me the idea for this scene in the first place. It can be found at http://flyingmachines.ru/Site2/Crafts/Craft31363.htm I wrote earlier that I was not sure what the ground would have looked like under the turntable, so I had put in a plastic disc to represent some form of platform. I have since found out that in fact such a disc would not have been there in reality so I have removed it from my model and replaced it with sand. I have also redesigned and rebuilt the shed with longer front and rear faces. The roof was made from plastic card and painted matt black and then given a three light washes of dark brown to tone the black down. I had bought some guttering and down pipes for an OO railway water tower, but when I looked at the gutters I saw that they had flat tops, whereas they should have had shallow grooves. I looked at some 80 thou rod and decided that if I filed it to a half section I could then file out my own shallow grooves to better represent the guttering, and I could drill holes to represent the drains. Down pipes were cut from the same sized rod, bent to shape and glued to the gutter sections. After the shed had been assembled I could put the roof on and then the gutters and pipes: The hole in the front is for a door and on the side is a window and opening which probably was where winch cables passed. I have brushed the wood with a wash of dark brown acrylic. The drain pipes are slightly longer than the shed sides so that I can insert the ends into holes which I will drill into the base later. I have also finished the short section of ramp which was on the lake side of the turntable. The ramp which the aircraft was launched on sloped to the lake: the rails which supported the carriage were laid on thick longitudinal beams which in turn were laid across transverse beams. The transverse beams rested on vertical posts which had been pile driven into the ground. There were two platforms, one on each side of the rails, so that ground crew could walk down the launch ramp to the lake. In the immediate vicinity of the turntable the crew platforms sloped at a steeper angle than the rails and had transverse beams to provide footholds: all of this detail is visible in the different photos in the DataFile although it took me some time to work it out! The large transverse beams which supported the rails were glued into place first: these were made from obechi strip. The longitudinal rail supports were also obechi strip. Under the crew platforms there was transverse planking as found on the other platforms and the turntable, but on top of these there had been laid supporting beams: these were continuations of the beams supporting the rails, but were thinner, so I used obechi for these too. The steeply sloping platforms were made from 3mm stripwood glued to the obechi underneath, and the footholds were from thin obechi strip: The structure is now pretty much complete but I still have to make the trolley for the aircraft, weather the wood, put in some vegetation on the ground and make some pulleys for the ramps etc. Thanks for looking. P
  7. pheonix

    Wingnut Wings Albatros DVa

    first class, top notch, etc. That really is a very fine model - looking forward to seeing it for real. P
  8. Evening All, I have tried to make the shed which probably housed a winch to pull the aircraft to and from the lakeside on the ramp system which forms the groundwork for this diorama. I do not know what the dimensions were because I do not have any drawings: I have had to guess them by looking at several photos and trying to work out sizes by comparison with objects of known size, such as planking etc. The construction is simple: make a frame from obechi strip and then add planks in the form of 3mm strip wood. The first attempt looks like this and I admit that I am not happy with it because I am certain that it is too small: I thought that the shed was square but I am now of the opinion that it was rectangular, so I will make two new parts - front (with the gap for a door) and rear (blank face): both are on the left in the photos. I have also been working on a screen which is visible in the photos and was somewhat crudely nailed to the pillars on the side of the turntable platform. I do not know what the function of this feature was - probably some form of windbreak. I glued small lengths of obechi into the base and rested the upper ends on the edge of the platform. Then I could glue strip wood to represent the planks that formed the screen - a bit rough to try to represent what is visible in the photographs. Finally I put in the low fence panels which ran at 90 degrees from the platform: Thanks for looking. P
  9. pheonix

    Wingnuts Stahltaube

    That is a super model of one of the early types. Reminds me of when I rigged the Etrich Taube (Pegasus 1/72), - that was fun too. Your lines look very good indeed with exactly the right tension. The paint finish is first class. P
  10. That is a really nice model - the propellor looks very convincing. Very colourful scheme too. P
  11. pheonix

    Polish Fokker E.V

    That also fooled me as I too thought that it was 1/48 until I saw that you have a very large hand. The wheels in particular are very impressive for this scale. Beautifully finished. P
  12. Evening All, There was a wooden platform that was built in 1915 on the lake side of the hangar - which is why I have put a line of posts along there. The original posts that I put in were the same diameter as the others but I felt that because this platform was only for people to walk on, the originals were probably smaller, so I replaced mine with smaller dowels This necessitated some small filling jobs to be done and some more sand needed to be scattered to conceal the repairs - hence the delay in getting the platforms made. My first intention was to lay the wood strips directly on to the cross beams as per the original structure but I was not sure whether I would be able to get a level and even surface if I did. So I decided to cut pieces of thin basswood sheet which were the same width as the upright posts and then cut small recesses in the sides of the basswood where each post would be. Planking was glued to the basswood as per the original i.e lengths were cut to make it look as though they extended over two post bays. I then cut short pieces of obechi to represent the cross members between the posts which were the actual supports for the planks on the real platform: these were glued to the underside of the stripwood. When I turned the platform over I could glue the pieces of obechi to the tops of the posts and the structure looks as though it has complete cross pieces, and the basswood is not visible. The planking though is level and even. I repeated this method for the long section of platform on the left side of the ramp. The large platform/ramp to the left of the turntable had longitudinal beams on each side and in the middle. To represent this I again used the basswood strip along the centre of the platform but added lengths of square obechi along each edge. At the end of the platform on the edge of the display I simply cut another recess in the basswood in the centre and put a short piece of obechi to sit on the end post: it represents the middle beam which would have run across the tops of the central line of posts. The curved pieces of planking which are in contact with the circular platform around the turntable were simply cut to fit and carefully glued into place on the ends of the longitudinal obechi strips. Finally I added two planks at the corner of the walking platform and ramp to the turntable: these are clearly visible in contemporary photos and had been laid and fixed at some time when the structure was being used. In the above the short section of platform to the right of the ramp is in place: the left section has been laid on the posts while some minor adjustments were being worked out. The following photos show the completed platforms, (and the old carpet in the room where I work! The dark patches on the slope in front of the side platform are where I have added more sand which is a slightly different colour in order to break up the uniformity of the base. Some of this will be covered in grass flock later so that these areas will be less stark (I hope). The ridges which were caused by the joints in the plaster bandage and were visible before the platforms were put in place are now very much less prominent: even I have to look for them and there is still the shed and grass to add, so I think that they will ultimately "disappear". Thanks for looking. P
  13. Evening All, I have decided to put in what I think may have existed under the turntable, namely a flat base which I have painted mid-grey to represent a metal base on which the turntable could revolve. I am not certain whether this is correct and I always have the option to remove it later if I change my mind - which may yet happen! The short ramp from the hangar to the turntable is more complicated than it looks at first sight. The half nearest to the hangar floor was level, but the half nearest to the turntable sloped downwards on the sides but had a second small ramp in the centre. The rails were supported by beams over the half nearest the turntable to keep them level. I hope that the photos which follow will make clearer what I am trying to describe. This is important because it determined how I constructed this part of the structure. The half of the ramp nearest to the hangar floor was straightforward - simply lay a series of cut stripwood pieces to represent the planks: these were laid on obechi strip which represented the longitudinal bearers which were laid over the goalpost structures: The ramp was checked for level with the hangar floor by laying rails between the latter and the turntable platform: Now the slope of the ramp in the section nearest to the turntable platform can be clearly seen. Here the ramp planks sloped so that they were lower than the turntable platform where the two joined, but the rails were supported by beams which were level between the hangar floor and the turntable. To achieve this I followed what I think was the original method of construction: I laid stripwood crosswise over the obechi strips as a continuation of the ramp built so far. I then made two rail supporting beams from cook's matches which I filed and sanded to a taper and glued these to the sloping part of the ramp. The gap between the beams was in turn filled with short cross pieces of stripwood and this too had a slope at the hangar end. I also left a small cut-out for pulley wheels to be fixed later: The new structure was tested for alignments by laying the rails over the newly constructed ramp: The steps were made from stripwood too and have been placed in position just for effect at the moment. There will be steps there when the base is completed but as there is much more work to do these will now be put on one side until later. Thanks for looking. P
  14. Having seen this earlier today Dave, I continue to be blown away by the finish that you get on your models with a hairy stick. The PC10 shade is also first class - come to that so is the rest of the model. Looking forward to more. P
  15. pheonix

    Pyro 1/48 Bristol Boxkite

    I agree with Adrian and Ian, you have made some really good improvements already and I am certain that there are more to come. The propellor looks magnificent! P
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