Thursday, 23 October 2014

Rolls Royce Armoured Cars - Part 6

Details, Details, Details !

Details on a model can really make them "pop".    But, details can be a two edged sword.   Too much and you may run the risk of damage when handling the model.   Too little and the model can look unfinished.   With my models I try and strike a balance.   For example when I was doing the bonnet latches, there was no way I could reproduce exactly the latch but I could make a decent representation of them and they could withstand handling as well.   I guess in the end it all boils down to the modeller's standards, skill and requirements.

First details to start were the Rifle Port covers.   On the actual vehicles there are 4 of these tear drop shaped covers over the rifle ports.   Luckily for me, my Good Lady Wife does a fair bit of Cardmaking and one of the tools she uses regularly is a Die Cutter called the "Big Shot".
Basically the selected metal stencil and the paper/card/plastic or felt to cut is placed on the tray of the machine and the lot goes through like a mangle.   Any way, one of her stencils had a tear drop shape that was perfect for the rifle port covers.   A couple of minutes later and I had more than enough covers.   These were then attached to the body of the armoured cars.

Next detail to be produced was the support brackets which go underneath the side extensions of the rear trays.   The 1914 Pattern had two types: basic metal struts, and a more curved support.   I chose to model the more curved one.

To achieve this effect, 22 mm circles were scribed and cut out of .30 thou sheet.   These were trimmed to size and then quartered.   Flanges were applied using thin strip, cut over length and then trimmed to size once dry.   The photo above illustrates the steps taken.

The 1920 Pattern had the normal curved supports at the front and the middle but the rear ones were even more "curvaceous"!   These were marked out on .30 thou sheet, glued together on the waste end and then the Dremel was used to created the curves.   The waste was then cut off and the pieces separated and applied to the model.

The trench crossing boards were simply strips of .100 x .250 strip, cut to length with a bevel filed at each end.   Small packing pieces were added to the bottom of the running boards to give a little separation between the boards.   This gave the added benefit of "locking"the brass strips well and truly into the running boards.   They aren't going anywhere!

The starting crank handles were made up from 1 mm brass wire and 20 thou sheet strip.   Holes were drilled after being marked on the strip by a simple jig.   The plastic was then trimmed down to the required size and taper, the brass wire glued in and the completed handles attached.

The doors over the 1914 Pattern radiators were simply made up from .30 thou sheet and a simplified version of the opening/closing arrangement made up from .40 thou square strip.   The 1920 Pattern radiator covers had a modified arrangement with louvres which allowed more airflow when the doors were closed.   The photo above shows the steps taken to achieve the louvres.   Also shown is the casting of the Vickers MGs which was taken from the Gun in the Airfix British Infantry Support set.

The gruelling task of riveting commences.   Rivets were applied in my usual manner i.e. individual rivets cut from .30 thou rod on the "Chopper" are applied using the Rivet Application tool shown in the foreground.   The rivet is held in place on the workbench ready to be pierced with the tool, given a dab of Tamiya Extra Thin cement and then applied to the model.   I do most of the rivets by eye, but I will measure out salient rivets so that correct spacing is ensured.   A small steel rule is used to make sure the rivets are in alignment every now and again.

Lastly, the headlight brackets were made up from .08 mm brass wire.   Again, much simplified but strong.   One piece of wire was bent up after having a flat hammered into one end.   Another piece was soldered to this.   The soldering setup I used can be seen in the above photo.   A small jig was used to hold the two pieces of wire in position whilst I soldered them. (bottom left corner of MDF)   Lastly another piece of preformed wire made up the other side of the bracket.   I turned up two headlights on my Hobby Lathe as masters and then cast the rest.   Little dimples were drilled into the masters of the headlights as guides for drilling holes to take the bent portions of the wire when they were assembled.

The 1914 Pattern Rolls Royce Armoured Car ready for a wash in warm soapy water and then undercoating.   No prizes for guessing who this one will belong to!

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Rolls Royce Armoured Cars - Part 5

Rear Tray, Running Boards and Turret.

The floor of the rear "tray" of the Rolls Royce ACs was made up from wooden planks.   To represent this I used strips of .20 thou plastic sheet, cut over length and then trimmed to size after the glue had dried.

The sides of the tray were made simply from .30 thou sheet cut to size with a back flap that had the boards scribed both sides and strapping applied.   The horizontal surfaces on the tray sides were also made up from .30 thou sheet.   The storage boxes that sit on the horizontal surfaces were also made up from .30 thou scribed sheet.

The body is secured to the chassis with an 8 BA screw and two guide tabs fitted to the rear of the chassis.   Having secured the body in it's correct position I could now proceed to measuring, cutting and fitting the running boards.   These were made from .40 thou sheet and a slight bevel was filed at the end where the board meets the mudguard.

The running boards were attached to the brass brackets with a little drop of super glue and then clamped.   The boards are glued to the front mudguards but not to the rear ones as this allows separation for painting.   

The turrets were made up from a circular floor of .40 thou cut out using a circle cutter and then 11 braces were glued around the perimeter.   Allowance was made for the varying heights of the turret sides and for the MG embrasure at the front of the turret.

A cardboard template was used to work out the required shape, length and curvature required (particularly for the sloping side roofs) and the sides of the turret were cut out from .20 thou sheet.   This was then glued to the perimeter of the turret braces, gluing and clamping progressively.   This was left overnight to dry thoroughly.   A pilot hole for the turret pivot pin was drilled and reinforced with a piece of .40 thou for extra strength.   A smaller disc of .30 thou was also glued to the bottom of the turret floor to raise the turret slightly.

The sides of the turret were panelled with .10 thou sheet in order to reproduce the fabricated construction of the turret.   The centre roof section was glued in and the sloping side roof sections added.   These were cut slightly oversize and then filed down to their finished shape.   Locating tabs for the storage boxes aft were added as was the armoured fuel tank at the rear of the tray underneath.   These were just simple boxes made up from .30 thou sheet.

The Vickers Machine Gun will be added later as part of the detailing process (read, I have to cast some up!)

I'm pretty happy with the progress so far, I feel it is starting to look like a Rolls Royce Armoured Car, obviously the wheels are a concession to the prototype but I think they convey the right impression.

In the next post I will deal with the details such as hinges, rivets, hatches, lights, etc.

Monday, 6 October 2014

Rolls Royce Armoured Cars - Part 4

The Body.

Construction of the body commenced with the marking and cutting out of the "floor".   40 thou plastic sheet was used and the salient points and cutting lines were lightly scribed as well as pencilled in.   This lets you know where to cut and place parts if the pencil lines are accidently erased (or rubbed off!)
A set of dividers were used to mark out the circular section of the hull sides.

A 16 mm hole was drilled in the floor in order to obtain access for securing the turret pivot pin from underneath.
Next, the driver's front bulkhead was cut from 40 thou and was braced with some of the offcuts from the angled sections of the floor.   Bracing, if done correctly does two things.  One, it will help to strengthen the model and two, ensure parts are in alignment and square.
I have found it pays off when you have cut your bracing pieces, to lightly file the corners of the meeting surfaces.   This ensures no little burrs are left behind and the brace will glue true and straight.   Another piece of .40 thou was added to the front of the driver's bulkhead to aid in attachment of the bonnet pieces.

The "firewall" bulkheads were then cut and the braces and glue tabs were added and the complete assembly glued into position.

The glue tabs were just little pieces of .40 x .40 thou strip.   These aid in attaching the sides and tops of the bonnets.   The two sides of the rear of the bonnet were made up and attached.   Then came the top of the rear bonnet and the triangular sloping sections.

The sides of the bonnets were cut and glued to the floor, with glue tabs, again from .40 thou square strip, being used to assist in achieving a solid bond.   The sides were braced with more offcuts and glue tabs attached to the top edges.   A start was made on the iconic radiator, which, for the most part will not be all that visible!

In the photo above you can see the steps needed to make up the radiators.   A backing piece of .40 thou of the required dimension was cut and strips of .40 x.60 thou strip were applied to the edges.   These were made over length and then trimmed once the glue had dried.   A packing piece of .10 thou was glued in and  a piece of fine brass mesh was inserted.   Small strips of .10 thou were glued top and bottom.   This gave the .40 thou rod a good gluing surface and after they were applied another two strips of .10 thou were glued at the top and bottom.   A piece of .60 x .80 strip was cut to length and the top filed down to achieve the sloping profile.   This was then glued to the top of the radiator.

The bonnet covers were constructed after a card template was made up and the .20 thou plastic sheet was used, cut slightly oversize.   They were filed down after the glue had dried thoroughly.   A little triangular fillet was added to the top of the radiator, flush with the front of the bonnet sides, as well.

In preparation for the sides of the driver's compartment, 6 braces, made from .80 x .188 thou plastic strip were glued in position, flush with the external edge.   These braces had the arris edge filed off the contacting surfaces.   They were also cut to length so as to allow them to act as supports for the roof when that is attached.   A 7th brace, made from thinner strip, was added at the very rear of the drivers compartment, on the centre line.   Glue tabs were also added to the rear of the driver's bulkhead.

A cardboard template, to establish length and the 1 mm cut-out where the rear of the side crosses over the floor was used to make up the sides from .20 thou sheet.   The side vision ports were cut out and the sides were then attached to the floor and braces starting from the front.   The sides were glued progressively along their length, clamping as I went.

The roof was cut out from .40 thou sheet to the required shape and glued in.    I had made the side 1 mm higher than the finished side so after the roof had dried, the top edge was filed down flush with the roof.    Any gaps were made good with a bit of Squadron white putty.

In the picture above you can see the finished roof in the foreground (just needs sanding ) and a partly completed roof at the rear.

In the next post I hope to finish off the rear tray, fit the running boards and make a start on the turret.