Mimesis AA

1932 Ford ‘AA’
Image7The Lesney Matchbox ‘Models of Yesteryear’ were the flagship range of the company. The name ‘Matchbox’ came from the original packaging that resembled a matchbox in size. The scale of each model wasn’t of concern .. no attempt to make the models to a consistent scale; instead they were built to a size that fitted into a standard box, irrespective of their subject.

The 1932 Model ‘AA’Ford 1.5 Ton Truck is 1:46 scale – which works pretty well in a 1:48 layout. The minor difference between the scales can be safely ignored – 1 inch in 1:48 is 0.0208″ while that same 1 inch in 1:46 is 0.0217″,.

The one thing that jumps out at me when looking at this photo are the wheels and tires. They just didn’t look right to me.

1932 Mimesis ‘AA’
Image1My ‘copy’ (mimesis) of the vehicle. In old photos from these days (and earlier) it is often hard to tell one make from another. I decided to re-work the model into a longer flatbed truck. I extended the frame with the intent to replace thw wheels and tires with 3D printed items. Here I have sprayed a brown paint over the vehicle as a undercoat for further painting.
3D Mesh
cutawayI spent a lot of time replicating tires and wheels for the vehicle. The drawing to the left shows a section-view of the dually wheels I designed for the rear (in the red circle I am showing where the brake drum and the wheel interfered). This was corrected but this is a good example of the design process.
3D Prints
prints_2It’s hard to understand sometimes just how small these parts can be. Heck .. I am designing them and I have a hard time. Here is a look at a brake drum, wheels and tires as they came from Shapeways, still covered with the wax from the printing .. sitting on a penny.
prints_1.. and cleaned. There are 4ea hub/brake drums and 6ea tires and wheels.
painted2.. and painted. The one nearest the camera would be the inner wheel/tire of the dually above it. On the left the front tires. These all use the same parts, just arranged differently – as the real ones were used.
painted.. and finally .. the “Ooops moment”. I broke the center out of one of the wheels. These are VERY delicate prints .. dang near full-scale thicknesses (relatively so) .. and need to be treated with all the care you would with a butterfly. Still .. good photo to show the quality that can be had.
I’ll call this Version 1. Was the print successful or not? Well .. if the question was “will they print with the detail I want?” then the answer is yes. The prints came out great visually. If the question was “were the prints useable?” .. the answer is .. no. There were problems with the design which I will cover next.

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