Paper models, photos and musings of a Paper Kosmonaut

29 January 2012

"Crevasse" #9

Enough about politics, though. It's something a paper kosmonaut can't change. Let's get on with more earthy business, a stuck Sno-Cat over a menacing crevasse. 

I have redone the bodywork. I did some interior work in the cargo compartment to give it a bit more of a used appearance and I joined the whole thing together. The front pontoons also were added to the machine. I started work on the rear set of pontoons as this is posted.

Some shelves and a map on the wall.
Something to look at inside the cargo compartment.
It is nearing completion but I still have to do some tedious repetitive work..

27 January 2012

Space politics

Now even though my country isn't the biggest player at the space market and we have produced just two spacemen, I want to have a little say about how I feel what is happening now.
In the news this week was the U.S. republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich who claimed that when he would be on his second term in office, there would be a U.S. moon base (link here).

Moon base Alpha, predicted to be there in 1999 by Gerry Anderson.

Of course, this is a great idea on itself. But is it really feasible? No effing way. There aren't any plans for permanent moon bases now, not at NASA, nor with the Russian space agency. Such enterprises take up years and years of planning. To have an active moon base in 2020 is nowhere near the truth. The Americans are grounded for the time being but even when they weren't, they have no means to carry parts of a habitat to the Moon. The Russians don't have them either, let alone countries like Japan, Canada or all the countries in ESA together. 
Newt Gingrich doesn't really know anything about spaceflight. He is just trying to get Florida's electorate at his side with promises he never can keep, even if he wanted them to come true.
Now are the average American citizens that simple? To believe they can have that moon base in eight years time? Actually, it wouldn't surprise me, I'm afraid. Just like Gingrich, the average American also doesn't care for spaceflight at all and doesn't know anything about it except perhaps Buzz Aldrin and Apollo 13.

26 January 2012

"Crevasse" #8

Sometimes you can look at a model you're working at and suddenly you get that feeling of "this actually could look better" or rather, "I could actually do better".

So that's what happened yesterday morning when I looked at the Sno-Cat. I liked the drive train piece but I found the coachwork could do with some more detailing, After all, I am used to build things much smaller than this and this was just too easy. So I started over with the top part. I gently cut loose the drive train part and made a new chassis and coachwork. This time with an interior. The original photo shows this particular Sno-Cat, Rock 'n' Roll, with an opened cargo door at the back. Since I wanted to try and get as close as possible to that picture I just had to do this too.. 
So I fiddled a bit with different types of paper and colours to make the interior. I'm not quite finished but I have come quite far already.
I used a transparent semi-matte sheet protector for windows and used CA to glue it to the paper. As I hoped for, (normally you wouldn't want this to happen but it's just what I wanted) it fogged up nicely. It added to the already frosty effect of the sheet protector texture. 
The coachwork is not yet glued to the chassis because I still want to do some stuff in the cargo compartment. I have some pictures of the interior of the Sno-Cat although it might be from a later date. I just can fiddle a bit with some extra stuff like shelves and boxes and other equipment they might use on the "road". And even though you might not be able to see details in the cabin interior itself, it is there. (-;
When that's done, I only have to do the bonnet and little doodads, thingamabobs and whatchamecallits on the outside again and I am back where I was with a better Sno-Cat.

Old Sno-Cat upper left, new Sno-Cat still in paper.

22 January 2012

"Crevasse" #7


Instant update!

I really am in a nice flow. The whole diorama ended up in the oven and after half an hour I took it out and gave the parts a dab of paint. And ta-dah! It doesn't look like rock any more. Especially after I dusted some gypsum powder over the still wet paint it got that powdery snow effect I was hoping for. Even after blowing off residual powder there still remained enough to keep the effect. Even in the crevasse it looks like fresh powdery snow that just caved in. Even the Sno-Cat already looks totally right even though it still lacks its tracks. Now I think I'll call it a day concerning this build.

"Crevasse" #6

This morning I first took the immersion blender to make the paper mass more pulpy. It worked like a dream, of course. I added two hands of flour and two hands of gypsum, after mixing that, I added a considerable amount of white glue. A nice mouldable mass was the result. Here and there you could still see some paper but that's not much of a problem.
So, I had this 80% paper / 20% water and cohesive stuff mass and for a second I wondered whether I would have enough. Well, I had. More than enough.

The chef at work.
Not exactly foie gras but perfect stuff for diorama building!

21 January 2012

"Crevasse" #5

While the work on the Sno-Cat momentarily has ground to a halt, I presume because of a small lack of interest (but that will soon come back), I started work on the diorama part of this build.
I wanted to try and make this one completely out of paper. The only non-paper part in this whole build might remain the brass rods intended for the drive train.
So I chose a picture frame and cut some ribbed cardboard parts into a 11x16 cm block. Next, this block was cut up and the crevasse was created. with some extra bulkheads inside I reinforced and at the same time shaped the opening. It just came to be while working at it.

19 January 2012

"Crevasse" #4

Although I'm a little afraid of having entered a new phase of very slow progress for reasons unknown, there has been some progress.
First, I have detailed the springs. It's just a couple of tiny snippets of paper to imitate the straps holding the spring blades together but they certainly do the trick.

The underside has all my attention now. The pairs of pontoons come together with two axles which are connected to the central drive shafts. One of the axles is ready and now I'm working on the second pontoon. They still can move so I can place them correctly on the edge of the crevasse.

more after the break.

12 January 2012

"Crevasse" #3

Been busy...
Here's my idea of how the tracks must look. I tried some other method too, but this worked best. I wanted more depth and shape in the tracks. After all, they are black metal chain-like parts, rolling over a hollow orange pontoon. Inside there would have been a sprocket that moved the track around the pontoon. All in all a very light construction, for the fifties, anyway.

I used some extra parts I fabricated from very thick grey paper I had. I just have one track finished now, it's taking a long time to glue all those tiny parts together.

One down, three to go.

09 January 2012


Three thousand pageviews... Thanks for visiting, y'all!
As an extra update on the "Crevasse" build : I decided to try and make the diorama display itself completely out of paper. So, no plaster involved. I will try out several kinds of papier maché in this one.
see you soon,

08 January 2012

"Crevasse" #2

Got a little more detail on the Sno-Cat. I cut out tiny pieces of orange paper to accentuate the door hinges and levers. I also made two black fasteners for the bonnet. The exhaust pipe was made from scratch since the original components did not do what I wanted. All three pieces are from coloured paper, too. The underside was detailed with some small orange strips over the printed orange framework to give it more body.

I also found out what the small box was for and where it had to go: underneath the right hand door. Could have known, I should have re-watched the video once more. Oh well.
Now it's time for the pontoons. I intend to make them moveable so I'll make things up on the go.
Anyway, here's where I am now:

07 January 2012

"Crevasse" #1

Now here's a new one and again I am trying my luck on a non-space related build. Last time I wasn't happy about the response but that's bygones. 
So, as mentioned in an earlier entry I wanted to make this Tucker Sno-Cat, being stuck in a huge crevasse. The background story's fascinating, I think and is just as interesting to me as a journey to the moon. Well, not entirely, the moon's just a little more interesting. But exploration is something that fascinates me. Okay, cut the chit-chat.
The build has started.
I reduced the kit to 50% of its original size which was 1/35 and now... erm.. you do the maths. (-;*
The coachwork is ready and it didn't cause me any trouble. This is a nice little kit and fits well. The designer, Kerstjan Blaauw (sounds like a fellow Dutch person to me) did a very nice job indeed. Mijn complimenten!
(the model can be found here.)
Here we go!
* It's somewhere in the nearness of 1/70, I guesstimate.

more after the break.

Friede - one step closer to finishing..

She just needs another good coat of aluminium acrylic. I airbrushed a first layer of dull metallic on the hull and it already has the look I prefer. This is how far I am now, another layer will follow but as you'll get my drift with these pictures I'll close off the pictorial side of this build.
Hope you like it.
The second stage is hand painted because of all the windows.

A nice gloss/dull difference between the first and second stage

The black/silver separation line was of course masked while painting.

01 January 2012

Friede - Ready but not yet finished.

First, I want to wish you all a very happy and prosperous 2012.
Now, on to the paper stuff again. Friede has been finished. All the engines were folded, glued and placed into the bottom part of the first stage. A nice result but... I am not yet satisfied. I still think it looks not quite how I want it to look.

Nice bottom. Millions of engines.

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