Jason's TOS Battlestar Galactica *WIP*

Discussion in 'General Modeling' started by opal1970, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hi everyone,
    *just a little confused about the hacked RPF site* I have been writing a whole novel there... kinda like the episode where Kirk is in the "Bad" universe. :eek

    well anyway, as the title says, I will be protocolling my TOS Galactica build here. I am still waiting for some tools to arrive (some I have not ordered yet, but more on that later). So I do not have a lot to show yet. A little background on why...

    Stardate unknown...

    Another bad day in the office, laying back in the sofa I started playing with the idea of doing a lighted Enterprise version, and the more I thought about it, the more I liked the idea.

    After doing a little research it was clear to me that the Polar Lights 1:350 Enterprise refit was really the only choice, but I wanted to sharpen my skills. Actually even more than that... I wanted to learn some of the things that were a mixture of totally unknown, BlackBox syndrom, down to really scary... things like Airbrushing, Molding/Casting, Lighting/Electrical, Weathering/realistic paintjobing, etc. :lol So I decided to do some other models first. The very first being the TOS Galactica, which is out of the box, a pretty straight forward kit. So why the Galactica first, you may ask... well, on the one side because it is so easy and on the other side... because it is so difficult. You see even though it is to be a practice build, I still want it to be a showcase.

    Well back in Nov 2011 I got a TOS Galactica kit and ordered all the aftermarket stuff I could find. Since and before, I have been reading the reviews, and sadly I have to agree… the TOS Galactica model from Revell is probably one of the worst made models I have ever seen as far as being accurate to the original. Furthermore, even at this stage I realize that the few pieces (under 15 pieces) are going to be a pain making everything fit together seamlessly. So you see, if I want to make her look good, I will have to do and learn alot.

    Well that is the background on the whole thing, we will see how close reality comes to the picture in my mind's eye. I will be getting some pictures up as soon as I have anything tangible for you.

    Thanks for reading,
    Jason

    PS - Just for future reference, if I get around to it I would like to document the progress in YouTube, I will add links to the videos here to this post so as to keep everything together.​

     
    Last edited: May 24, 2012
  2. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Accurization Kits

    I ordered the only two acurization kits for the TOS Galactica that I could find. Have a little bit of mixed feelings about them. The first set was, well, ok (NOTE: after doing a little research I am not sure if the set I bought is from the original owner, in the set I have, there are pieces which I believe to be missing, so this may well have been a "copied" set)… at any rate, it provides needed detail but the casting was not done very good, quite a few bubbles, small details that did not get enough resin, and there is a typical orange skin effect on all the pieces. I am assuming that they either sprayed too much release agent onto the original mold, or sprayed too much into the mold during casting. Either way, the pieces do not have crisp details and being that the surface is completely different to the surrounding model they will stand out like a sore thumb without some major restoration work (which I am unsure will even be possible with all the nooks and crannies). On top of that, they really have nothing to do with "accurization" looking like a typical Star Destroyer detail, which really does not have any "set-in-stone" relief patterns (professional Star Wars modelers out there, please forgive my ignorance if this is not quite true ) but rather just random bumps, squares, towers, etc.

    The other set from Arvey Model Products saved my day...
    Battlestar Galactica Resin K - ARVEY Model Products

    Thank you AMP for offering a very nice product that was worth every cent.
    it has much more detail (requiring more than just a little surgical work on the original plastic model) but is astonishingly true to the original studio model and to my surprise a lot of extra pieces, even pieces that I have yet to locate in the directions. I am assuming that the doubled pieces are in case the casting did not go good on one part or another to ensure that there is almost always at least one backup and the “bonus” pieces just for good measure. I can’t argue with that.

    Other than that, there does not seem to be alot out there for the TOS Galactica, if anyone knows better please feel free to shoot the links over to me.

    Thanks for reading,
    Jason
     
  3. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Resources

    Compared to other SciFi topics the TOS Galactica does not have a lot of reference material. Here are some of the sources that I will be using to do my build:

    Of course I had to go out and buy the DVD of the original series... My wife is already wondering if I am buying all this stuff to build a model or building the model so I can go out and buy this stuff. :lol

    Nice kit reviews:

    Original studio model photos by Gary Cannavo (Thanks Gary)

    A very well done schematic of the Galactica by Jim Stevenson (along with a massive amount of other BSG blueprints):

    For finer details here are some awsomely well done scratchbuilds

    Jim Creveling: Galactica Miniature By Jim Creveling
    Marko Osterholz: Battlestar Galactica | ROCKVOICE | Marko Osterholz
    Here is a very nice resin kit, done by Scott Spicer: modelermagic.com

    Here are some Battlestar Galactica related sites where there is really a wealth of information and experiences:

    Well that is everything that I have for now, hope that helps anyone who wishes to attempt to turn the original Revell kit into something really special.

    If I find any new resources I will update this post to keep this information in the begining of the thread and all together so that years later no one hast to search through many pages of posts in this thread to find the data.

    Jason
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2012
  4. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Ok I have been doing a little research but am not certain about which airbrush I should buy. I am a little hesitant to get a "everything you need to get started for beginners" package... (even though that is probably exactly what I need). I am kinda a perfectionist and I want tools which can help me create a reality that mirrors the picture in the back of my head and I LOVE doing very fine detail.
    I have been reading up on Iwata airbrushes and they sound pretty good but the price differences are pretty huge. I do not want to say that money is not a factor, but I do want something that will do the job right the first time.
    The CM-C Plus has a pretty small nozzel (0.23 I believe) which would be more than small enough for any small detail jobs... however it comes with a nice price.

    I have read comments that the HP-C Plus is also very good and its price is somewhat more affordable.

    Is there anyone out there with experience with these or other airbrushes?
    Please feel free to be critical... to be honest I do not even really know what I need, other than probably one for small detail and one for large spray coverage (i.e. lightblocking the inside and priming the outside of models).

    Thanks
    Jason
     
  5. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Ok last post for today,

    as for where I want to go with this...

    1. definatly want it to be as close to the original as possible while not overdoing it on the workload level.
      .
    2. I will also be lighting it as close to the original as possible. For the most part I will be using a VERY fine fiberoptic and warm white LEDs(with exceptions - see below)
      .
    3. I will probably add a couple extra lighting goodies that have nothing to do with the original, but doing so in such a way so that I can turn them off if I just want to have the original in front of me. Things like:
      • Navigation and strobe lights similar to Star Trek ships... seems only logical that even a warship would have these mounted for peacetime or friendly territory travel and turn them off during wartime operations (which is why we would have never seen them in the series, right?).
        .
      • I would like a "Battle Mode" button, which turns on the typical red/orange explosions we always see on the underside everytime the Galactica is getting her butt kicked. Not quite sure how I am going to do this, but I have a couple ideas that I will have to try out.
        .
      • Landing Bay chaser lights... this would be difficult at best due to the size of the model anyway, but the accurization parts do not really make lighting up the landing bays an easy task.
        .
      • in addition to the white "main" engines, I want to have a flickering blue around the edges (barely visible with all the white light coming out)
        .
      • Also similar to the Star Trek ships, I would like to have an LED light up the "Galactica" on the landing bay sides... of course a very weak light that is just enough to light up the letters and little else.
        .
    4. I would love to really build up the landing bays with a squadron of vipers, shuttles, crates, transports, ect. but I am not really sure if it is even possible on this scale, just roughly judging it, I would say a cylon raider would be about the diameter of the spru-tree that the model parts are attached to. ouch.
      .
    5. One of the things that I love most about the classic series is the music that you hear in the begining... makes you feel kinda sad, kinda alone but nevertheless you feel a shimmer of hope and courage to go out and face the unknown... ok you know what I mean. I would like to have a button that starts this music, and maybe other sounds as well... things like battle sounds, engine sounds ect. don't know yet.

    ok that is the extent of my madness for now, I will just have to see where this takes me. :cry

    Jason
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2012
  6. ozzyguanche

    ozzyguanche Sr Member

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    Sounds likeyou have a plan, Welcome to the real replicaforum, and look forward to the build.

    Ozzy
     
  7. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hi Ozzy,
    Thanks... yeah, I do have a plan alright... and it looks pretty good on paper, only problem is that reality has a habit of getting in the way. :)
     
  8. ozzyguanche

    ozzyguanche Sr Member

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    We are all well aware of that, to be sure!!! LOL

    Take your time.

    Ozzy
     
  9. Apollo

    Apollo Legendary Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Looking forward to your build.

    I'm sure some members can give you some advice when you need it
     
  10. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you Apollo (like the name btw ;) )
    as for getting advice from all the others here, who rather than myself, know what they are doing... I am counting on it. :)
     
  11. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Almost forgot, since I started my research, I have gotten "friendly" with the idea of using self-coded microcontrollers to handle all the blinking and such. This will really come into play when I get around to doing the 1:350 Enterprise, but I will be putting some chips into the Galactica as well.

    I will be using an Arduino board to do all the testing, which is a pretty awsome piece of hardware and amazingly cheap (considering the costs of most of the lighting kits out there) anywhere from $20 - $30.

    Arduino home page: Arduino - HomePage
    at anyrate, I found a page by M.I.T. that describes how to use the Arduino to export code to a Microcontroller such as an ATtiny85 which is about the size of a fingertip and costs around 20 cents for one.

    [​IMG]


    and an excellent youtube video from the guys at Makezine.com showing the same.


    The only drawback is that you do need to have programming skills and at least a basic knowledge of how microcontrollers work, both of which I have... to one degree or another.

    The ATtiny chip is rather limited with its outputs, you have about 4 channels, 2 of which are capable of doing things like LED fading. Which might be ok for the Galactica project, but for the big "E" i am definatly going to need more. There are other chips that have more outputs but I will not go into that here.

    Jason

    PS - I will probably run all the electrical at 9 volts, I will definatly use a wall power source while it is sitting behind glass but I like the idea of having the possibility of hooking it up to a 9v battery, taking it down from its stand and passing it around with working lights... even though they will probably only remain lit for about 10 minutes... still it is a nice feature.​
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2012
  12. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    I am not sure I agree with all of it but here are some specifications for the TOS Galactica taken from Tecr.com Battlestar Galactica: Colonial Battlestar (NOTE - specs are for standard Battlestars, values in brackets [] denote values for the Galactica):

    CAPRICAN DOCKS COLUMBIA CLASS BATTLESTAR

    SCALE: .................Capital
    LENGTH: ...............1,265 meters
    TONNAGE: ............20,000,000 metric tons
    SPEED: .................0.2C sub-light
    POWER: ...............1 Tylium energizer (7,360 Terawatts)
    ............................2 fusion reactors (43.8 Terawatts)
    STANDARD CREW: ..496 [1,012]
    ............................24 officers [32]
    ............................200 warriors - 90 are fighter pilots [240 - 180 are fighter pilots]
    ............................272 crew [496 crew - 134 civilian]
    PASSENGERS: ........510 troops [110]
    CARGO CAPACITY : 600,000 metric tons
    CONSUMABLE: .......18 months [9 months]
    MANEUVERABILITY: class C
    HULL/ARMOR: ........2.8 to 4 meters
    EM-SHIELDS: .........20% - 40%
    SENSORS: .............Short/Medium range, sub-light, 200,000 m^3/s
    SCANNERS: ...........C at 300,000 kilometers
    WEAPONS: ............32 Blaster batteries
    ............................2 Turbo-Laser cannons
    ............................12 20 megaton Solonite missiles (anti-capital ship)
    ............................2 400 megaton solonite bombs (planetary bombardment)

    FIGHTERS: ............75 Starhound class Vipers [150 w/ pilots from Pegasus]
    ...........................12 Landram surface transports
    ...........................12 Mk. VI space shuttles​

    I am unsure as to exactly which class the Galactica is supposed to be, I have found references to both Nova Class and Colombia Class. Perhaps the one or the other is this form factor mentioned in the new series. Does anyone have any information on this?

    Thanks,
    Jason
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2012
  13. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    I sanded down the rough spots on the kit pieces today. The left insert wall that is suposed to fit in the head of model was terrible. The factory cast/mold was done poorly and it does not fit at all. Luckily, it was not a real big job to sand it back until both pieces fit without sanding away any exterior-showing surfaces. I would be interested to know if this is a general design fault or if it was just on my model. (I will try to get a picture of this added later today.)

    I also sanded down most of the accurization pieces, my delight at the fine detail has dampened now... I think I will be looking cross-eyed for the next couple weeks until my eyes have time to straighten out after concentrating on these small things. :wacko I am going to go out and get a lighted desktop magnifying glass (no idea what the correct terminology for it is),I will have to see íf that makes the work on the small pieces any easier. For anyone who does the same, be really careful with the AMP Accurization kit, they are small and yet sturdy but the resin breaks easily if you apply too much pressure to the wrong area.

    ok as always, thank you for reading,
    Jason
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2013
  14. sapper36

    sapper36 Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Looking forward to watching your build. I did one of these back when the kit was first released. My first adventure fiber optics & accurizing. Have fun!
     
  15. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hey Sapper,
    i am having fun with it already, I don't really care if it takes weeks, months, or years because I am doing it for the fun of making it and not to have a cool piece of 3D art on the shelf collecting dust (which of course is also pretty cool ;) ).
    Oh I know what you mean... I think I did a Cylon raider back then. Back then doing fiberoptics was a whole different ballgame as it is today... LEDs have made things alot of easier as well. Even back then I was interested in the whole lighting topic but never got around to starting.

    Take Care,
    Jason
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2012
  16. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    alot of my electrical things arrived today... I am getting prepared to dive into the world of SMD (Surface Mounted Device) a.k.a. VERY small. Specifically I will be trying out some type 603 LEDs. I don't really need them for the Galactica as most all of the lights will be driven with normal LEDs and a bunch of fiber optics but I do want to put these SMD babies in the Enterprise and this will be a sort of first run... but MAN, these things are tiny.
    Below is a picture of a "normal" LED, next to it a typical small green for nav lights... and then in the black strip are a couple SMD LEDs of the 603 variation. The resolution is not all that great but I think you get the picture...

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2012
  17. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    Hi Jason,

    Accompanying pictures of your work in progress would be very nice :) and perhaps even quite usefull in the restoration of my TOS Battlestar Galactica which I purchased recently.

    Not to hijack your excellent WIP :$ but rather to add . . . it came fully painted and had already the simpler resin additional parts that you mentioned in place (not the real excellent replacement set). Here's the ebay picture of the Battlestar Galactica as purchased :

    [​IMG]

    After receiving it however I was quite appalled by the horrible paintjob, which was done very sloppy and quite thick, so all the 'nice' yet as you mentioned very crude additional resin details were gone completely, together with those on the original plastic kit and to top it of the paint used smells really, really bad :

    [​IMG]

    Then I found a thread in which there was mentioning of using grafitti-remover to get rid of all the spray-paint. So I bought it and started on the back section and it's looking promissing :

    [​IMG]

    However when I applied some graffiti-remover on the additional resin part in the front, as a test, ... it slowly but surely began to desolve and disintegrate :cry

    [​IMG]

    So lesson well learned ... I have to work very carefully around those parts and this is still very far from being done to my satisfaction.

    Would you or someone else have a good suggestion what to use in totally removing those additional resin parts from the plastic kit?

    Keep us up to date with your work in progress :)

    -Chaim

    P.S. The paintjob on those extra ships was rather delicate executed in comparison.
     
  18. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hi everyone,

    I have been working on the electrical and programming topics. Please bear with me, this is my first youtube video, so this is the "no-frills" version.

    The first video is the the landing bay lights, at the moment I have them running off two chips, which is impossible to time them perfectly, meaning that after a couple cycles they are out of sync. I ordered a bigger chip with more pins to solve this. These will eventually be hooked up to fiber optics and power both landing bays.

    The second film is an engine lighting test. I want the edges to be the common bright white with a very faint flickering blue (generally cameras pic up blue edges around white LEDs anyway but what you see in the video is pretty close to how it looks in real life). This is for test purposes only, I have two different toned blue LEDs that are flickering and two bright white LEDs in the middle, and the engine piece is not yet light-blocked on the non-lighted areas but you get a good idea of how it is supposed to be. Not perfect, but I think I am going in the right direction.

    Video 1 - Landing Bay Chaser
    [​IMG] or Here

    Video 2 - Engine Test (lights off)
    [​IMG] or Here


    Well that is all for now, I do not have any pictures of the actual modeling progress because I am still waiting for some supplies to arrive and have not yet started.

    Jason
     
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2012
  19. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hi Sym-Cha,
    thanks for droping by and the pics of your Galactica. Ouch sorry to hear about the remover... sounds like it was pretty heavy duty... you might want to just take some normal paint thinner/remover and get rid of all the paint so you can see what you are working with. Tip that I also learned from experience... if you are doing something that you are not sure about... always start in the least visible areas first. ;)

    Jason
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
  20. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hi Chaim,

    sorry it was quite late in the night as I made that last post so I kept it short.

    just looking at the pictures above, to be honest, I personally would probably get rid of the accurization pieces all together. I do not think I will put them on mine either. I can really recommend the other accurization kit though, a lot of detail that is about as studio correct as you can get without creating everything yourself. Either way you are going to have a lot of cleanup work to do (which is not meant to sound negative, that is how you learn alot). But yeah, the first thing that has to happen is that 1/4 inch thick coat of paint needs to go.


    Those are cool, I did not look very hard but I was not able to find any of the "rag-tag" fleet in that scale. I can't really see the detail in the pics but if nothing else those made the deal worth while (depending on how much you spent on the whole package).

    Cheers,
    Jason
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
    b26354 likes this.
  21. Sym-Cha

    Sym-Cha Master Member

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    Hi Jason,

    Thanks for your kind replies. Where would I still be able to pick up that other accurrization kit?

    The grafitti remover works actually remarkably well on the plastic kit alone and is also less smelly then usual thinner and indeed perhaps it would have been best to have tried it on a resin part somewhere less visible but then again I did not anticipate the graftti remover would attack the resin altogether.

    The 'in scale with the Galactica' rag tag fleet I've seen on ebay. And indeed it was why I considered buying this set, since the added detail parts (normally $50) and the extra ships (usually $35 each) alone were worth it. Also it is a nice project to get my creative juices flowing again and my humble modelling skills to another level :)

    -Chaim
     
  22. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hi Chaim,

    true, I guess it had to come to that sooner or later anyway... removing the paint from the rest of the model and leaving it on the accurization parts just so as not to destroy them would leave you with an even bigger mess. :)

    Thanks for the information, I am going to have to see if I can find the rest of the ships,,, I thought about making some myself but if I can find a couple already finished and ready for painting, that should save me some time.

    As far as the accurization kit goes, I dont really understand the relationship but the kit is from AMP, although they are only to be found by a company call Ironshipwrights... I am not sure if it is one and the same or if they are working together but that is where I got mine... ironshipwrights.com

    Hope that helps.

    Jason
     
  23. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    After a hair tearing out session I was finally able get all of the low level lighting patterns on to one large ATtiny2313 chip (17 outputs)

    Here is my lighting plan (according to my current voltage, I can put up to 2 LEDs on one LED output)...

    Landing Bays
    2 rows of Landing lights in each bay will be made from fiber optics connected to 9 LEDs

    both Landing Bays will be lit with warm white light, with an optional red lighting for Battlestations.
    Engines
    Each main engine outlet (3 main engine outlets) will have up to 2 steady white LEDs and 2 flickering low power blue LEDs

    Cruise engine (1 small engine outlet) will have 1 steady red LED and 1 (or perhaps 2) flickering yellow or orange low power LEDs
    Windows
    All windows should be able to be lit from fiber optics connected to 1 large warm white LED
    Battle Damage effect
    each area of battle damage effect will contain 1 steady red LED and 2 or more fading in and out orange/Amber LEDs

    [​IMG]



    ATtiny2313

    Done 1 LED output Warm White for window light
    Done 1 LED output Red for Battlestations light

    Done 3 LED output for steady White engine light
    Done 1 LED output for steady Red engine light

    Done 1 LED output Red/Green blinking Nav light (1 sec on, 1 sec off

    Done 9 LED outputs - Chaser for the Landing Bays
     
  24. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Well, I am still waiting for things to arrive. That is why I am busying myself with other things. Today I was able to get a pretty close replica of a TOS Viper in the scale 1:4105(Which is what the Galactica is supposed to be). I didn't have a penny Handy to use as size reference, I think it is a little too big to be perfectly in-scale but pretty darn close if I do say so myself...

    [​IMG]

    There is a lot of transparency between the parts due to the CA glue, once it is cleaned up and painted the gaps should be filled in. I used normal CA, and had a heck of a time trying to fit the 7 pieces (made mostly of 0.05mm rods) together until the glue was hard enough. More often than not the pieces stuck to the tweezers more than the other parts. If I find the patience for it, I may try it again with gel CA glue and see if that is any easier. As it was, I needed about an hour to an hour and a half from start to finish.

    did someone say there is 75 of these?!?!?!!? :facepalm

    Here is another shot of the Viper with one of the landing bays as scale reference...

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2013
  25. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Still waiting for things to arrive, RTV Silicone is what is really holding the show up. Well at any rate, I made a Cylon Raider today. Not quite sure what I will do with them, I would assume one will be in the landing bay somewhere (Baltar's ship), depending in what kind of showcase I will put this in, I may have a couple raiders dogfighting with vipers or doing attack runs on the Galactica. I will cross that bridge when I get there. I have the viper next to it for comparison, again here, the raider will look much better once I get a coat of color and highlights done.

    [​IMG]



    [​IMG]


    I attempted to make a Colonial Shuttle, but before it was finished I realized it was too small (at least as compared to the viper). My reasoning is that it is my assumption that the landrams are transported by shuttles to the surface, meaning a viper could quite likely fit inside a shuttle. Here are the pics anyway, even though it is back to the drawing board for me.

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  26. Chrisisall

    Chrisisall Sr Member

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  27. Griffworks

    Griffworks Well-Known Member

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    Nice work here, opal1970! I really like where you're going w/showing the work on the electronics. :thumbsup

    Timeslip Creations makes a couple of great resin models to go w/your TOS Galactica. Unfortunately, most are out of production at this time. George has got: Prison Barge, Gemini Freighter, Colonial Movers, Rising Star and Mineral Ship. ARVEY Model Products also has a very nicely done Foundry/Recovery ship, which is currently available.

    Anyhow, I appreciate the sharing of your work. I look forward to watching your build progress, as well.
     
  28. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Chris, that is a nice piece of work, I like the background, looks like she is doing a low orbit flyby. yes, I have a love/hate relationship with insanely ambitious projects. sometimes I do wonder why I do things like that, I think sometimes it is just a competition with myself, just to see if I can do it. I wish I could say they all turn out as I planed.


    Thanks Griffworks for your complements and for following my Thread.

    I already spoke to George over at Timeslip Creations, just have not gotten around to getting out an order. I asked him íf he had any pictures of them a while back but have not gotten a reply yet. Thanks for the tip regarding Arvey, I didn't see that kit on the website... gonna have to take a closer look. :)

    I just saw your thread on the RagTag fleet... pretty impressive I will definatly be staying tuned there as well. ;)
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2012
  29. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hi folks,
    sorry for the delay, had to put a little more energy into other things the last couple weeks.

    I ordered the model making DVDs from Fon Davis which arrived about a week ago. Alot of things I had already figured out from trial and error, but still alot of "Ohhhhh" moments. well worth the money for anyone interested in model building.

    Well after about 8 weeks of waiting the slightly better microcontrollers that I need to power the LEDs FINALLY arrived the other day. I haven't had a chance to hook them up to my Arduino Board yet, but I am starting to get the hang of it so there is no reason why they should not work.

    Here are the chips that I have tried out so far...
    ATtiny 85
    VERY small but only 5 usable output channels and only 2 of those being PWM, meaning able of producing fading or flickering LED commands.

    ATtiny 2313
    about twice as big as the ATtiny85 but it has 17 output channels, unfortunatly only 4 of them have PWM.

    TLC5940
    slightly larger than the 2313, it has 16 output channels all of which are PWM enabled (as with the chips above, each channel is capable of lighting 2 LEDs)
    [​IMG]
    As for learning expiriences...

    1). I tried to take a shortcut by doing some hard-to-get-to parts of a mold with "Brush-on" silicone and then after it dried with normal Silicone... Needless to say, DO NOT try to combine a "Brush-on" silicone with a normal High Visc. Silicone. They did not stick to each other to a satisfactory degree, removing the object from the mold caused them to separate from another. :facepalm As it was a pretty big mold I would like to use what I have if possible, I have the mold fixed back up but I have not tried to cast from it yet.

    2). Remember Grandma telling you that "Hast makes waste"? well I proved her right again by reparing yet another mold gone bad and wanting to test it so fast that I forgot to take out the original that was still inside... cursing the whole time I was pouring resin that there was a block in the channel somewhere. Luckily I reallized it before the 3 minute resin had set and was able to clean up my original. And THAT boys and girls is why we do not stay up till the wee hours of the moring doing things that need more than one brain cell.

    Things should start picking up speed now, I will be posting more pics soon.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2012
  30. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    I did a rough draft of the landingbay runway.
    [​IMG]
    Still have to scale it down to fit the bays though. This will be lit, the Red marker lights on the side will be the typical chaser lights that we all know and love. Additionally, I am thinking about lighting up the white markings by cutting them out on the styrene and filling them in with transparent resin and backlighting them with a very dim LED (just enough to notice them).

    this is a runway layout that I used for reference, I may or may not do the yellow barriar markings... that far into the landing bay will not be seen anyway. We will see.
    [​IMG]

    Just food for thought... It doesn't seem like a "runway" in the sense that we know it is really necessary... I mean lets face it the Galactica is in space so there is no reason why the ships couldn't slow down to a crawl before entering the bay (similar to incoming ship scenes on the DeathStar). Granted in a dogfight a pilot would not want to slow down before entering the protective bay area and it does add to the dramatic feel.
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2012
  31. Chrisisall

    Chrisisall Sr Member

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    Wow- never seen this level of attention paid to that area on a model of the ship before... this is gonna be one for the history books.
    So says Chrisisall!:lol
     
  32. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for your vote of confidence Chris, I will do my best not to let you down. :)
     
  33. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Quick update, things are starting to come together. On the up-side I finally got the tlc5940 chip working, and have a test sequence of 16 LEDs going back and forth like a cylon eye. :) The cool thing about the tcl5940 is that you can "daisy-chain" them together giving you up to well over 200 channels to control different LED functions. On the down-side, I found out that unlike the ATtiny chips the tcl5940 cannot operate alone and needs another chip to give it commands. I am in the process of finding out which microcontrollers can do this job.

    As far as modeling goes, I started hollowing out the accurization landing bay tips and arms. this is necessary if I am to do any kind of lighting at all. I will get some pictures of that up tomorrow. I also put a coat of primer on odds and ends, it has been 24 hours now and I am not really impressed with how the primer adheres to the pieces. scratches off so easily I could skip the primer all together and just apply normal paint. :angry I am not sure if the primer is too "cheap" or if it just doesn't work with the resin I am using, at any rate I will leave it alone for another day, maybe it just needs longer. I also tried light-blocking the inside of the engines... after 3 coats it is still not 100% "light-tight", this is going to be real fun. NOT.
    To make sure the light is transfered evenly, I am casting transparent pieces for the bottoms of the engine wells, which will be frosted and glued to the engine unit. again, pics tomorrow.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2012
  34. Chrisisall

    Chrisisall Sr Member

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    Jason, I got a kit on eBay a couple of months ago that I will be lighting as well. So, supremely interested in you build. I'll be tossing comments your way as you go... nosey doofus that I am.:lol
     
  35. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hi Chris,
    I would be more than happy to help, the door is always open.
    Which kit did you buy? the Revell kit? The more I get into this the more I think it would have been better going a different route. I did not want to completely scratchbuild it, but the accuracy of the revell kit is soooo god-awful I would love to just sand down all the details and start from there. the accurization kit from AMP is absolutly manatory, that is the only thing that makes the revell kit look halfway decent. Starshipmodeler has a really nice resin kit only problem is that only the main body is rotocast and it would be almost impossible to do the lighting that I am planning. And it costs about the same as what you pay for the revell kit, round 200. I might just get it anyway and used the parts from both to get the effect that I want. Time will tell.
     
  36. Chrisisall

    Chrisisall Sr Member

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    I got an unpainted, crudely assembled Revell model for like, $20- I disassembled it as soon as I got it. Came apart very easily.
    The basic shape is okay, but the launch bays are a couple mm's too narrow IMO. And of course, surface detail is very toy-like.
    I'll fabricate stuff. I'm reasonably good at it now.
    You'll find you get into an addiction with it- needing to refer to studio model pix CONSTANTLY... heh heh!:rolleyes
     
  37. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Are you kidding? My walls are already covered with them. :) which of course makes me hate the revell kit even more... But (Gone with the wind music in the background, Red sunset) with god as my witness I will make this kit something worth looking at, oh yes. :lol
     
  38. Chrisisall

    Chrisisall Sr Member

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    [​IMG]
    THAT'S THE SPIRIT!
     
  39. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    The lighting is causing some problems. As mentioned in a previous post, I received my Texas Insruments TLC5940 chips to control the LED and I hooked it up to my Arduino board and had a very nice "Cylon-Eye" effect going with 16 LEDs. My plan is to reduce the size of this, as I do not want to put an Arduino board in the model (about the size of 3 9-volt batteries). The Arduino board runs off a Atmel ATmega328 microcontroller, and I ordered some of these to create a minimun system. Here is a video of the two chips on a breadboard runing 16 LEDs:


    Of course I will not be running a Cylon-Eye anywhere on the Galactica, this is only to test if all channels are outputting when and how they are suposed to. Once I get the hardware working the way I want it to, I will write a code to make each output pin do what it is suposed to do, i.e. the engine lighting, landingbay lighting etc. If you have ever seen those 3D LED cubes, they are usually driven with TLC5940s.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012
  40. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    While I am still working some bugs out of the hardware coding, I fiber optisized the bridge. The fiber optics are .25mm, I would have done them even smaller but 1) I could not find a drill bit that small and 2) a bit smaller than the one I have would probably break too easily.

    The little beads at the ends of the fiber optic strands are from holding a lighter close to them melting the tips to form a small ball, this is to insure that they do not slide back through the holes until I get them fastened down on the other side. Which I do not want to do until the bridge is securly fastened to the main body and I know that all the strands are long enough to go where they are suposed to go. :)

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2012
  41. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    While looking for a way to mount fiber optics, I had an idea... I am not sure if anyone has ever tried this or not but I just wanted to know. I took a single strand of 0.25mm fiber optic and coated about an inch long segment with a 3 minute Resin. Knowing what happens when CA glue is used, I was very uncertain if it would destroy the fiber optic or its lighting capabilities. Needless to say, it is now about 6 hours later and it works like a charm. I also bent the strand back and forth and did not noticed any brittleness.

    Knowing that this works, I may cast pieces with the fiber optics running though the mold to hard to get to model places (i.e. though the arms that go to the landing bays. In the accurization kit they are solid pieces, so I might just mold and cast them with the fibers needed in the bays).

    below is a picture of the lighting test.

    DISCLAIMER: Unless this is a known fact, if you plan on doing this yourself I recommend doing your own testing first, other resins may produce other results, as well as doing this with many strands in a bundle may have adverse effects that my test with a single strand did not show.

    PS. this is the LED that will be running all of the window lighting in the Galactica. The LED is a Warm White LED with a 330 ohm resister softening the power flowing though it. In the series the window lighting is almost yellow, I did not really want it THAT yellow, but I definatly did not want to use the typical star Trek bright white that almost has a touch of blue to it. so I think this is a good middle.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2012
  42. Chrisisall

    Chrisisall Sr Member

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    The tsunami of awesome swells....
     
  43. Skullbeast

    Skullbeast New Member

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    This is going to be spectacular! Nice job!
     
  44. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Spent some time planing a board layout. On the layout below there is 1 ATmega328 and 3 daisy-chained TLC5940s, there may be place for a 4th TLC5940 on the right side. I don't know if I will need 3 or even 4 TLCs but I would like to make the board so that it will fit for future projects. Leaving one or more TLC out will not break the curcuit. (Thanks to Vixr for the tip about the PCB Editor expressPCB)

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2012
  45. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    yoohoo, my airbrushes and compresser arrived on the weekend, two of the hoses had the wrong size connectors, but one of them was correct. I still need to get some paints and everything that goes with it, but I am really looking forward to taking them for a test run.

    just for information I ordered:

    Airbrush Veda 134E
    Airbrush Veda 180
    Airbrush BD-139 (0.3mm - 0.2mm) No idea which brand, it came with the compressor

    Compressor - AS196 (2 Cylinder)
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2012
  46. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Ok, this Revell kit is really starting to /&%$ me off. sometimes I wonder if the designers ever really saw an ephisode of Battlestar Galactica. The more I dive into this, the more problem areas I find, some are easy to correct, others... not so easy. I really did not want to do a scratch job but I really do not see any way to get the results I want without drastic restructuring. I ordered the Galactica resin kit from Timeslip yesterday, which doesn't mean I have totally given up on the revell framework, worst come I do have a couple pretty cool ideas in the back of my head what I can do with her. As for the Timeslip kit I will have to look at it when it arrives so am not quite sure If I will use some of it, all of it, or none of it but it should be a better base to go with.
    I know the main body is rotocast but the landingbays (and perhaps other parts) are solid, which also does not fit into my plans.
     
  47. Chrisisall

    Chrisisall Sr Member

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    Well, in this instance I really, ACTUALLY feel your pain.:unsure
    The landing bays on the Revell kit are not wide enough by at least 2mm... they need to be cut open & extended out. When I realized this, I decided mine was done enough.:lol
     
  48. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    yeah, that is one of the major points that is kicking my butt at the moment, no matter how I turn the landingbay there is no "good" place to cut it to get the needed width, and when you take into account all of the details that are either missing or just downright "toy-like" all of which needing attention you really have to ask yourself if it is worth the effort.
     
  49. Chrisisall

    Chrisisall Sr Member

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    I'd cut it as close to dead center as possible & live with repairing greeble coverage affected.
    Depends on how accurate you want to make it. I settled for a percentage WELL below 100% because I just wanted the general look to be correct from a few feet away. That took me 2 months. An additional 2 months and I could have made it perfect, but no one was paying me, so no, not worth my effort.
    I really like how mine came out, though. I's on a shelf four feet from where I work, and always looks good. Unlike my Vipers, I really never handle it close up.:)
    When I think about all the work I did to it, it practically WAS a scratch build...

    [​IMG]
     
  50. opal1970

    opal1970 Well-Known Member

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    Hi Chris,
    Which is probably what I will end up doing using the "close your eyes and hope for the best" method. :)

    Exactly that is where the problem begings, my goal is to get her as realistic as possible, I mean so realistic that you are not even really surprised when one of the little 1/4105 scaled officers moves and says "Hi there, we're looking for Earth but took a wrong turn somewhere along the way. If you could direct us that would be Fracken awsome!"
    :behave

    Something like this only in the 1/4105 scale. Amazing, you can even see the launch rails inside the launchtubes (which are not your typical simply holes but really Viper formed). Not sure who did this, found it on the Net.
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2012

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