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Old August 17 2012, 02:06 AM   #1
Warped9
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3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

And so it begins.

This is my first try at the lower hull of my TOS Class F Shuttlecraft. While the overall shape and proportions are okay there is some curvature that didn't work out. And I think I know part of the reason. The first part is a minor flaw on the original drawings. The second mistake was my approach in building the part.



Both mistakes I'll try to correct tomorrow, but that's enough for tonight.
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Old August 17 2012, 08:26 AM   #2
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

Very nice beginning.
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Old August 17 2012, 12:57 PM   #3
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

That deceptively simple looking lower hull isn't the easiest thing. There are subtle changes in curvatures and angles all over it. I was tossing it around in my head for more than a week before I actually sat down to try to make it. Although it didn't come out exactly the way I hoped I did learn something from the attempt. Hopefully next time I'll get it right.

One thing I learned right off: I find it highly doubtful you could carve the lower hull out of a solid piece of wood simply because of the angle changes along the sides and that the leading edge is curved rather than straight and the craft tapers in towards the front. To do it as a scratchbuild model you'd have to make a framework much like a boat's hull or aircraft fuselage and then put your sheet balsa or sheet plastic on top of that. That's where this 3D model (assuming I can make it) could be helpful because I'd be able to get the exact shapes in cross sections to make the frame members.

Later today I'll try again.
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Old August 17 2012, 02:32 PM   #4
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

Looks good to me. Although I'd imagine that trying to get the (most likely) variable radii on the edges correct is a bit frustrating. Computer modeling programs prefer constant radii, whereas this was originally done by hand and would have nice smooth radius changes all over the place.
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Old August 17 2012, 03:06 PM   #5
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

There is a plugin for Sketchup called CurviSoft that helps you make complex shapes. I'm curious about it, but I understand it's not a free plugin although I don't know what it costs.


Candidly I find myself questioning the accuracy of some of the things on Phil Broad's construction drawings. The way the ship is drawn results in some counterintuitive shapes, from what I can see. You'd think you'd want the angle of the hull on the upper and lower sides to be constant, but that's not what you get following the drawings exactly as is. If the angle is supposed to remain constant from aft to bow then it's not drawn correctly, particularly as viewed from above or below. I'm not against a complex shape (it's more visually interesting) but its hard to imagine they would have built a TV prop this complex. You'd think they'd go for something simpler to construct.

I would really like to see the full-size mockup myself. I'm not sure how much I can get from a few screen caps of the mockup.
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Old August 17 2012, 07:58 PM   #6
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

My second attempt didn't work as hoped, but again I learned something valuable. Now I really understand how the bottom hull is supposed to be shaped, and that helps me understand how to make it. The curved edge where the sloped forward facing surface meets the side should be a constant radius all along until it meets the flattened underside where the radius increases as it progresses towards the aft end.

Stay tuned...
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Old August 18 2012, 07:34 PM   #7
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

More often than not Ill have to remake an object because Ill learn that there was a better way to make something that will turn out better...Following with interest
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Old August 18 2012, 07:42 PM   #8
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

When they built the original mockup they weren't doing it from a computer model (I'd love to see the actual construction drawings). Indeed knowing that leads me to suspect that Phil Broad's drawings---and subsequently my own---are slightly incorrect.

I've pretty much reasoned out what I have to. It'll just be a bit tedious. The thing is my drawings "correct" certain things that look to be production compromises to facilitate construction. That adds a small wrinkle to the some of the shapes in the design. In like manner the saucer on the 11ft. filming miniature of the TOS E isn't a perfect circle, but it wasn't noticeable on TV. Yet an actual scale replica of the ship demands a perfect circle for the saucer.

My shuttlecraft is, of course, an idealized version since there were significant discrepancies between the full-size exterior mockup, the interior set and the small miniature. For me this is what the "real" shuttlecraft is rather than a replica of a plywood set piece. Cary did much the same when developing his take on the TOS E. Small adjustments are made for it to work, changes that will likely pass unnoticed unless pointed out.

A clue to the shuttlecraft's overall shape can be seen in those few photos showing it under construction where you can see the exposed frame members before the exterior walls were put on.
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Old August 19 2012, 08:01 AM   #9
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

Warped9 wrote: View Post

A clue to the shuttlecraft's overall shape can be seen in those few photos showing it under construction where you can see the exposed frame members before the exterior walls were put on.
Interesting, Id like to see those photos.
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Old August 19 2012, 08:04 AM   #10
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

Lord_Schtupp wrote: View Post
Warped9 wrote: View Post

A clue to the shuttlecraft's overall shape can be seen in those few photos showing it under construction where you can see the exposed frame members before the exterior walls were put on.
Interesting, Id like to see those photos.
Here you are.
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Old August 20 2012, 05:12 AM   #11
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

Holy crap, Phil Broad's cloudster site is back?!? I thought that had gone the way of the Dodo!
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Old September 1 2012, 02:54 AM   #12
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

Okay, it's been a pain, but now we've got something and I'm feeling better about moving forward. Although still flawed I think this is much better than before.

What you see here is the lower hull with the stabilizer rim in place, but not the stabilizers yet.



Something notable in the underside view. The leading edge is curved, but on the full-size mock-up while the heading edge is also curved the sloping underside is flat. it looks odd when you see it, but I can see where they made it that way for ease of construction and because it's a detail that wouldn't be noticeable onscreen. But when I drew the plans I drew that forward part of the underside as a compound curve to match up with the curved leading edge. The consequence of that, though, is how it complicates construction when trying to match it up smoothly with sides that angle inward as well as tapered toward the front. Also the edge where the sides and bottom intersect is round. The final complication is that the edge round at the aft end is a greater radius than at the bow and it's a slightly different curvature.

Fun I can tell you. We're I doing this from scratch I'd go for a little more consistency.
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Old September 1 2012, 09:22 PM   #13
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

A little progress.

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Old September 2 2012, 06:55 AM   #14
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

I've made quite a bit of progress today, but it's late and I'm tired so I'll post images tomorrow. I'd also like to add a bit more to it before sharing some images.

The forward hull as well as the roof has been added.
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Old September 2 2012, 05:10 PM   #15
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Re: 3D TOS Shuttlecraft...

Looking great so far...
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