Would a Calvin and Hobbes model be welcome here?

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Mysta2

Member
Hello, I'm a professional model maker in Dallas (If you're curious what that means: I work here www.buzzwerk.com as a "master" model maker)

I spend a lot of my free time building random stuff that finds it's way into my head: usually scale machines, helicopters, planes, toys, cute characters, or some mix of all of them.

The point of this thread though is the project that I'm working on right now. My dad and I have always been huge fans of Calvin and Hobbes, and for a Christmas gift I wanted to make a little display model of Space Man Spiffs red saucer (Admittedly I'm a few months behind schedule)

I'm pretty proud of how it's turning out so far and would like to share it, and I could also use some input on some of the details that I'm still figuring out (mainly forming the canopy, and sculpting the seat) I could also use some encouragement to get the thing finished up and shipped out.

It's a prop from a comic strip... is that wierd?
 

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NS4

Well-Known Member
Not weird at all - would love to see your progress.
Build threads are what the RPF is about, whatever the subject. Post away!
 

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JediMichael

Sr Member
I'd love to see anything C&H. I once built 80 small snowmen in my parents front yard when visiting them, based of course on one of the comics. Oddly, I was wearing a coat and hat that Calvin was wearing in the comic.
 

Mysta2

Member
?..I once built 80 small snowmen in my parents front yard when visiting them...
Love it! I've always wanted to do that, but I grew up in Portland Oregon, and now live in Dallas Texas neither of which get much snow.

I was looking for some progress pics of the build so far and I can't believe I haven't taken any. I'll post some pics up tomorrow when I get to the shop of the breakdown as it sits now and some of the screenshots of the early stages. It's got all of the typical prop issues concerning inconsistent and non existent source material but maybe even worse considering it never actually existed. I'm trying to keep the exterior look very accurate but there's no shortage of holes to fill, and that can be the fun part.
 

SmilingOtter

Master Member
Now you're just teasing us... :D

I'd love to see what you're working on. Tracer Bullet was my favorite persona, but I loved Spiff as well.
 

Mysta2

Member
Tracer Bullet didn't have the cool toys though.

The project started in the digital realm. It took me quite a few tries to get the curves right.



without the canopy:

I’m still really unhappy with the seat so far, it changes constantly in the comic so I basically have free reign on the design. I want it to look like a beat up leather, half way between a fighter seat and a lazyboy. That kind of natural look is really hard to achieve digitally (at least with my modeling skills)

Orthos:



Some of that paneling comes from the strips (such as a slot on the underside that would house the ladder that is used in one of the strips), most of it I just had to make up. I'll do a little breakdown of what some of the panels and doors are when I get a chance.

You may recognize many of the displays:



From the amazing work done for Oblivion. I hope this doesn't offend anyone, I certainly wont be making any money from these. I sat on the fence for a long time on how to do the console panels, I do feel like I cheated a bit by making them basically touch panels when I feel that the ethos of the comic would have had them all analog switches, levers and knobs. The touchscreens are a compromise made to get the schedule a little back on track. I will be adding a good bit of detailing to bring some switches and knobs back into it.

I've got a bunch of half inch acrylic under my workbench that I rescued from our dumpster a long time ago that I use for a lot of my personal projects. It's perfect for the look that I need to get from this model. I actually cut everything that I needed to make three ships out of one sheet of my acrylic
Parts knolling:



And the assembly


Once the clearcoat goes on all of those panels and the headlights should really pop out. One of my favorite tricks to detail headlights and the like is to cut out the backside and polish the front. I’ve been playing with coloring the insides of the lights with sharpies, but so far an having a tough time achieving the look I want.
 

Mysta2

Member
Some details I forgot to mention: to get the panels to look like that I just printed them out on decent paper, squeezed some clear silicone (E6000) onto the bottoms of the panels and squished them down onto the printouts, trimmed them out, and masked and sprayed the faces.

Also the tanks at the rear of the cockpit I turned on our lathe out of aluminum and then dry brushed yellow. You can barely see it, but you can see the brush strokes a bit. I wanted them to look like fire fighters breather tanks which have a woven look.
 
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division 6

Master Member
There are a few C&H kit's out there including Spiff but nowhere as nice as what you have going.
Looking forward to seeing more progress. :thumbsup
 

Mike J.

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
That is unbelievably clean! How are making the saucer halves? Are they CNC'ed?
 

Mysta2

Member
Mike J
Yeah, I've got a bunch of great cheat-y tools at my disposal

Toolpaths:


I did this one on one of our HAAS VF3s

Devision 6
I didn't know there were kits for it, but I have seen a number of models online that I assumed people scratch built. None of them have ever quite captured the sleekness of what I always liked about the one in the strip.
 

division 6

Master Member
They are fairly rare like with most garage kits usually done in small runs.
They tend to be lacking in accuracy.

There are a few pictured near the bottom of the page on the Club House Model Museum.
link

There is a guy on the CH forum currently doing several 70's Hanna-Barbera figures that look nice.
 
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SmilingOtter

Master Member
That's looking fantastic! You should consider doing a battle damaged one, spewing smoke, since that's normally how we see it... :)

Tracer Bullet didn't have the cool toys though.
"I keep two magnums in my desk. One's a gun, and I keep it loaded. The other's a bottle. It keeps me loaded."
 

Mysta2

Member
Small but satisfying step forward

I've been working on a batch of simple architectural models this last week (that I will share with you if I get permission back from the client). So I had the perfect opportunity to lay some clear coat on my dashes at lunch.

Tools of the trade:


It's hard to really capture what these look like before vs after



But basically the clear coat obliterates anything finer than a 600 grit scratch, and makes all the screens crystal clear.

Now I've got to go back and build up all the detail and wear, and matte the console back out.

Thanks all for the enthusiasm. You're helping to keep the pressure on to get these suckers done.

Smiling Otter
Oh, it certainly won't be factory fresh. Not spewing smoke, in theory I'd like it to be "playable", that's usually how I like to build things.

dcarty
Thanks, I definitely chose my career out of what I love to do. That doesn't mean every day is a joy, but I can't imagine what else I would want to do.
 
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joberg

Master Member
Great work Mista 2 and finally, someone making my fav fliying saucer. Calvin is my favourite character and I cannot wait to see that baby flying!
 

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