About two months ago I decide to play at being Davros and build a Dalek. This is not as uncommon as you might think and there are two great resources available for people who make a simliar, foolish decision - www.projectdalek.com and the dalek builder's guild (www.dalekcity.co.uk).
I joined John Darley's excellent Project Dalek and got their workshop manual (for a small fee) and the plans for the NSD (New Series Dalek).
The Forum's at Project Dalek are full of great tips and if you do enough research then Dalek construction is not so bad. Until I started the project my experience with powertools was limited to a cordless drill and a circular saw. Now I have mastered routers, jigsaws, power sanders and have started laying up fiberglass.
I have been keeping a build diary over on Project Dalek and thought about posting it here, but decided to wait until construction was far enough along that I was definately going to finish it. Now that I have a construction in my garage approaching 5 feet tall that undisputably looks like a Dalek, I think I can say that I've reached that point. So I'll start summarizing my build diary here. Unless no-one is interested.
The first step is to decide what kind of Dalek to build. It turns out there is a huge number of variants and some are very different in design from others (for instance the imerial and renegade Daleks in "remembrance" are completely different design - dimension-wise - from all other Daleks.
From me there was no question I want one of the new Daleks. However, these are by far the hardest type of Dalek to build. Luckily, it turns out that the NSD Skirt (the bit with the hemispheres on it) and the basic dome size are identical to those used on the Daleks in "Genesis". Therefore I though I will start with the Skirt and the Dome. If the project is harder than I anticipated my New Series Dalek can morph into a classic Dalek.
May 26th 2008
Armed with the Dalek Workshop Manual, I head off to Home Depot for supplies.
Left with a bag of 14 assorted clamps, a new Jigsaw, a 8ft x 4ft piece of 3/4" MDF (Medium Density Fiberboard)
and an 8ft x 4ft piece of hardboard which I hope will be okay for the skirt panels.
Mark up the MDF for the skirt base and top as per the plans.
BTW that is real sweat on the MDF (it was 91F [~32C] here today in sunny Austin), no tears yet, or blood!
Started to cut with i) my circular saw ii) New jigsaw. Well I'm glad I started on some scrap material, cause cutting in a straight
line is harder than you might think, particularly in 3/4" MDF.
Had to switch
from the circular saw to the jigsaw, after 2 power cells were complete drained about halfway through. That MDF is tough going. I now have the base cut out at the design size.
This took a lot longer than I expected (but I'm learning to saw).
May 31st 2008
I cut out the top of the skirt at design. Then I removed 3mm from all sides of the top and bottom of the skirt, puting a 15 degree slope on the edges at the same time.
Then removed the center of the skirt top to cut down on weight (MDF is very heavy).
Then measured and cut-out front, rear and side supports for skirt out of my 3/4" MDF. Tested that everything fitted together properly (it did, surprisingly).
This morning started putting everything together - disaster strikes.
My upright support design involved putting two holes through the top and bottom of the skirt into a strut on MDF. Even though I put pilot holes into the struts they split
when put the screws onto them and tightened up the join. Re-tried with wider pilot holes but either it split again or the screw stripped out.
June 1st 2008
Well problem solved with the wonder of internal corner braces.Shame I can't count though. 4 supports X 2 braces x 2 ends = 16 (Not 8 as I calculated at the store). Got to go back for more!!
June 3rd 2008
Well skirt frame completed. Everything square I believe (after I realized my garage floor is only level in one directing, so use of the spirit level was highly compromised).
Started cutting some skirt panels. A stanley knife plus metal edge makes a really good job of cutting the hardboard.
June 7th 2008
I started looking at the skirt panels and realised that my Dalek was pretty asymmetric. I think my original trimming skills with the Jigsaw
leave a bit to be desired.
However, a quick bit of geometry and line drawing revealed that with four cuts on the top of the skirt and three to the bottom the left-right symmetry could be restored
The cuts were made and the frame is really very symmetrical (My jigsaw cutting skill are definately improving with practise).
Now my side panels are about 14mm too short, and the second and third to front panels will be a little long.
whilst at it, I increased the size of the holes in the skirt top and bottom plus tidied them up.
Cut the back and side panels panels (1cm oversized and 2.5 cm too tall). Fitted them
and cut them down to size. Temporarily fixed them with masking tape.
Cut oversized rear corner panels. Dimensions here very are close to design. Haven't started to fit them yet
I was in Michael's craft store and saw 100mm Acrylic Balls for $1.79. Bought one for experimentation purposes. Will probably go back for another 30 or so in a week
or two. These are to be used as the hemispheres (or bumps as my daughter calls them) on the skirt. At the local store they go under the wonderful name of "Crystal Keepsakes" not "Dalek Death Balls". The woman at the till gave me a funny look when I suggested I might like to buy a further 25.
Some quick experimentation when I got home revealed that even though my side panels are too short there is plenty of room for the two hemis at the top location.
June 8th 2008
Made a start on making the dome. This is one of the hardest Dalek parts to make. The common approach is to make a plaster model of the dome (called a plug) then to make a mold from this in Fibreglass. The final dome is made by laying up more fibreglass in the mold. Currently, I am just going to try and make the plug.
The base and former for the plug were made. 3/4" MDF for the base, with 1/2" wooden dowel at the centre. Although my former is double sided only one side actually has the shape on it other side is just support to make sure its level. Quite a lot of adjustment was required
to ensure the dome diameter was going to be correct.
I put an old light fitting in the center in the centre to start the plug (this was mistake number 1). It was way too small the amount of bulking up required is huge (though I haven't realised that yet ).
Start building up the dome shape with Plaster of Paris (POP) and MDF off-cuts.
a href="http://s532.photobucket.com/albums/ee330/Doctor_Whoovie/?action=viewĄt=DSC01473.jpg" target="_blank">
Don't let the picture fool you, my son "helped" with the Dalek for over 30 seconds before claiming he was being bitten by mosquitoes and return to the safe cacoon of the house and his Wii.
Finish the 25lb bag of POP and I have a small section which actually follows the shape of the former (yeah, it'll work but It's going to take time). Off to Lowes for another 25lb bag of POP (I suspect
I'm going to need more than that).
By the time I finish on Sunday night plug looks looks like this (hooray)
Unfortunately other side still looks like this
However, I know that with patience this side will look the same, then I can use more dilute material and perhaps artex to get it nice and smooth. The very fast drying time here is really hampering progress
but making more dilute just means you can't use it immediately, once it gets to the correct consistancy, it sets just as quickly.
That's a wicked idea. Brilliant.
I could never do something like that though; you could give me the tools, materials, idiot guide instructions and as long as you like, but I just couldnt do it. I'm just not DIY/building/making stuff inclined.
I'd absolutely love a proper sized Dalek. I thought about buying one of the quarter(ish) sized Character ones, but I've just not got the money or the space for everything I want.
I'd make space for something like that however.
I remember the Droids Owners/Builders club at last years Celebration Europe. That was good. Similarly, If it wasn't for the fact they're so disgustingly priced, I'd get one of the Artoo bins (but not for ú250).
Holy Cow!! This is fantastic. I'm impressed you are taking on this challenge and making such progress.
As for Michaels, how do they know you don't have a lot of memories you need to keep in those crystal keepers!
I want to ask my dad to make me one. He's pretty handy.
[QUOTE BY= LanaiaD]
I want to ask my dad to make me one. He's pretty handy.[/QUOTE]
I had one of those (sadly no longer with us).
On my last post I mentioned how crap I am at anything like this, yet there was seemingly nothing my dad couldnt build or mend (within reason obviously - one of his favourite stories to tell people was how I asked him to make me a real working Lightsaber the night I first saw Star Wars).
June 21st 2008
So this week it was on with the skirt, the remaining panels were cut and attached following Project Dalek advice of working from Stern to Bow.
At the second to front panels I could feel a slight twist happening, but as forwarned an extreme twist was present on the front panels. Here it can be clearly
seen on the front right panel, before the front left was added.
Here is the skirt with all panels added with liquid nails (and solid panel nails too). Front four panels awaiting top trimming.
So went down to Autozone for fiberglass (that fibreglass for those in the UK) and bodyfiller supplies. to glass up the joints internally and fill them externally.
Glassed up the internal joints. First time using fiberglass and the learning curve was steep. The tempaerature has been over 100F everyday for the last week
so I added little less hardner than recommended, but it still went off really quickly. The hardning reaction seems pretty exothermic, the material that went off
got really hot, really quickly.
My first joint was a mess, but they quickly got better. Here's the internal view. Still got to finish the upper and lower joints of the panel to the skirt frame, but I'm a bit fed up of the fumes and the fibers so I'll leave it for a while.
It's going to need a little tidying up but the whole skirt is extremely solid now and doesn't look too bad on the outside.
started by filling the nail holes with conventional wood filler and moved onto the skirt seams with auto body filler. Just done the 4 back joins so far. This is enough to let me know
that I'm not doing any more until I go buy an electric sander! Here's an image of the skirt so far along side the most important tool a Dalek builder (aka a Dust Storm) can own: "A Big Shop Vac".
July 10th 2008
Progress is slow. All skirt joints have been filled then sanded, then some more filling and sanding. Then two coats of primer then more sanding.
Progress was hampered by i) Buying a cheap sander which immediately broke and had to be replaced
ii) not reading that first primer layers should be brushed on and not sprayed.
Here the progress to first sanding after initial primer
This photo was taken after the skirt passed the "will it get through the front door" test. It did and should make it even with hemi's on.
The Fender (once built) will not make it when attached and the skirt won't make it through the garage to house door unless the hemi's are off.
Haven't checked whether it will make it up the stairs and into the games room, which is to be it permanent home when finished.
Anyway, next level of filler has been applied. Will sand tomorrow and apply next layer of primer, then more sanding I guess.
July 13th 2008
After next round of priming, I was really unhappy with the righthand side second to front panel.
Due to the fact that I probably hadn't cut the bevel on the skirt top and base quite this skirt facet
never sat well with the two adjacent panels (i.e. gaps due to different curvature) and lots of filler
had been required, thus (due to my inexperience with filler) it was kind of messy.
A flat center with two uneven and irregular filled edges. With the primer on and the light catching
it properly, it just looks awful. So I decided to fill the entire panel section with Bondo and flatten it.
Seems to have worked pretty well, looks much better now with the primer on, however at least one more
round of priming and sanding will be required (though maybe not for the entire skirt).
Bought some fender and shoulders materials and a few cans of spray paint to test colours.
I tried Hammerite "Hammered Gold" for the hemis, slats etc.
Then I got Hammerite "Hammered copper" and "oil rubbed Bronze" from hammerite's American Accent
Metallic range to try for the main body colour.
Here are my tests, hemis were primed in white first, the hardboard was primed in grey.
July 15th 2008
A friend has lent me a router on "longish" term loan, principally for circle cutting. I have never used a router before so this should be interesting.
Spent last night marking out the fender top on 1/2" MDF whilst watching "the Web Planet". I was alittle concerned that
my skirt would look a little strange centred on it since as previously documented not all the panels are exactly the correct length.
However, when I put it on top everything looked fine, nice and symmetrical with no odd looking spaces.
This evening I decided to try routing my first circle (the top of the shoulders). Not having ever used a router before I was a
bit apprehensive about this, but decided to press on anyway. My simple homemade jig seemed to work okay. Here it is after cutting
the outer edge, then the inner edge.
The whole thing was somewhat easier than I had anticipated and the ring OD is less than 2mm off my target. Although there was a lot
of MDF dust, there was much less than I expected and the dust mask and goggles felt like overkill. That being said there was absolutely
no wind or breeze so the dust stayed where it fell.
I was going to cut out the fender base today however since it was 97 degrees F, I decided to give the fender cutting a pass and be content with
just cutting my first ring. I will probably try to do the neck rings at the weekend, just to be done with them.
Anyway, here is the nearest thing to a stack I can manage. Skirt on panel marked up for fender. shoulders top ring on skirt. 50lb + dome plug
in the back ground. (Bottom of shoulders is still in middle of fender top (I hope the piece I need to cut out will be big enough).
Well, it feels like progress to me.
July 21st 2008
I mainly spent this weekend working on the fender. Cut out the top removing clading thickness and angling the edge. Then cut out the side formers and attached them.
Next cut out the angled panels and attached with copious amount of grip adhesive.
My Fender cladding is just hardboard for numerous reasons.
i) I do not expect to do much trundling in public - hey this is Austin (what is Doctor Who? is the standard question)
ii) I intend to reinforce it with lots of fibreglass - this did wonders for my skirt strength.
iii) My Dalek is going to be really heavy if I don't start taking weight reducing measures.
iv) I read Alansdalek comments about materials being stronger than you think
v) It was cheap
Anyway need to put on the vertical sections next then GRP and fill. Having built the skirt first, sure speeded up doing the fender.
cutting the top and the panels seemed like child's play now that I've had some experience. A lot less filler is going to be required.
22nd July 2008
Finished putting on the fender panels this evening. I hope that powergrip stuff is good!
I'll let it dry for at least 24 hours then apply GRP to the inside either tomorrow evening, or Thursday.
More progress tonight. The powergrip had cured by this evening, so I turned the fender over to take a look.
Needs some filler but on the whole not too bad. Turned it back over and Fibreglassed the joints
Then measured up and cut out the base for the shoulders
On the whole not to shabby for an evenings work considering I didn't get home until 7pm and its only 9.10pm now
Hey maybe you should do a panel at Glalifrey this year with a slide presentation on building a Dalek! You couldn't bring it in person but you could share the photos and your experience.
Wanna build me one now?
[QUOTE BY= LanaiaD] Hey maybe you should do a panel at Glalifrey this year with a slide presentation on building a Dalek! You couldn't bring it in person but you could share the photos and your experience.[/QUOTE]
Well, If I can get to Galifrey and I have actually finished by February then it could be possible. However, Most people seem to take a year to 18 months to finish, and I'm only at two months.
Additonally, there are loads of people building Daleks, principally in the UK, the US and Australia. There are many who could show better work than I.
Over the weekend, I'll get the diary up to date, then updates will slow down.
Please remember I have had very little experience at this kind of thing, my success is due to advice and guidance from people who know what there doing (and wrote down plans).
[QUOTE BY= barnabeee] Wanna build me one now? [/QUOTE]
Well go join www.projectdalek.com it may not be as hard as you think.
[QUOTE BY= Doctor Whoovie]
There are many who could show better work than I.
Over the weekend, I'll get the diary up to date, then updates will slow down.
Please remember I have had very little experience at this kind of thing, my success is due to advice and guidance from people who know what there doing (and wrote down plans).[/QUOTE]
'There are many who could show better work than I.'
I don't think you should feel that - it looks great - and at some speed as well.
Thanks for sharing - daveac
I am very impressed, I have to say and am keen to see how it turns outs for you if not a touch envious). The most I have managed is a Dalek Cake. Well done to you sir!
(This reminds of the old days when Ken with other members of the Gallifreyan Embassy were building a TARDIS in Ken's parent's garage.)
I suppose you could cheat and put one of these on the top
(full size 1024x768)
Okay completely off topic/on topic but did you see that report in the paper that some guy in the UK got a friend to kidnap his ex girlfriend wearing a Dalek Voice Changer helmet to disguise himself and then the ex boyfriend was supposed to save her and hopefully in turn get back together with her. What was that about?
[QUOTE BY= LanaiaD] Okay completely off topic/on topic but did you see that report in the paper that some guy in the UK got a friend to kidnap his ex girlfriend wearing a Dalek Voice Changer helmet to disguise himself and then the ex boyfriend was supposed to save her and hopefully in turn get back together with her. What was that about?
NO - but did RTD write the script
26th July 2008
Put together my shoulders frame and the hardboard is soaking in the bath for application tomorrow.
Here is my stack at the end of the day.
The hemispheres on the New Series Dalek have a raised black ring round them, unlike the classic daleks. Mike Tucker who designed the "Dalek" in the episode "Dalek" used Truck Oil Seals for this purpose. They are 1) heavy and 2) expensive, so they will not be present on my dalek.
Went to Dollar Tree this morning and found my "oil seal" solution. The lids from the top of "Stay Fresh" reusable containers. 4 for $1. Just need to remove to flap and paint black.
27 th July 2008
Another fairly productive day. After letting my hardboard soak overnight I skinned the back half of the shoulders this morning.
Due to my Wife and kids being on vacation in the UK, I was unable to call upon my Teenage
son to help wrestle with the beast. So forty five minutes later the hardboard was attached and I had lost about 10lbs in sweat. I also lost about a further
lb of #17 1" wire nails, half a tube of power grip and 16 screws. Got to say though, that although it was hard work
everything seemed to go okay and nothing actually went wrong.So here it is
Then after letting it dry for a few hours and trimming the excess hardboard, I put it on the stack
Why is it I think the front half is going to be even harder? Goint to make a template for that though, cut the hardboard to approximate size, plus put
in screw holes etc, then let it soak. Hope the prior preparation makes fighting it slightly easier than todays effort.
Next, I cut the neck rings using the router and circle cutting jig. Now have all three and they are very close to the target dimensions.
Need to tidy them up a little then I am going to put a 45 degree slope on them with the router and a camfer bit with a bottom guide bearing on it.
28th July 2008
Made some progress after work this evening. Sanded the outer edge of the neck rings to get them a smooth as possible.
Then used the router with a camfered bit and a guide bearing to put the 45 degree edge on all three. Still need a little tidying up
with small amount of filler and more sanding, but in general I'm pretty pleased (at least they are all the correct size).
Next stuck some card together mounted it up on the front end of the shoulders and made a template for the hardboard.
I'm going to cut it out a bit oversized, let it soak for a few hours then skin the front half of the shoulders either tomorrow or Friday. Travelling with
work on Wed and Thursday, so those days are out.
29th July 2008
Managed to skin the front of the shoulders this evening. Again it was a wrestling match, but somehow didn't seem as bad as the rear did.
I was really dreading the shoulders, and although it has been hard work cladding them without any help, it was nowhere near as problematic as
Here are the shoulders with the rear and the front cladding, but the front still needs to be trimmed back, obviously some filling and sanding will be required.
31st July 2008
Trimmed back the hardboard on the front of the shoulders, then sanded all the hardboard flat on the top and the bottom.
I am now pretty much caught up with Dalek construction. This weekend I m hoping to finish the neck cage and either start the gunboxes, or build up the cladding on the shoulders for the NSD details.
[QUOTE BY= Doctor Whoovie]
I am now pretty much caught up with Dalek construction. This weekend I m hoping to finish the neck cage and either start the gunboxes, or build up the cladding on the shoulders for the NSD details.[/QUOTE]
That is seriously good work!
Davros is slave-driving you at this pace
Wonderful - daveac
3nd August 2008
Didn't get quite as much done this weekend as I had hoped, but managed to do most of the neck cage.
Since metric dimensioned wood is hard to get in the USA, I bought 6 1/2 feet of 1/2" x 3/4" moulding for the neck struts
and decided not to worry about the few mm here and there difference from "real" dimensions. Once my strut
dimensions were decided I spent Saturday afternoon marking out the neck rings, then taking out the strut recesses.
Here are neck struts and cut rings.
I used an MDF x structure support to center everything up as I secured the neck.
Here is finished neck and the cross support
And then the neck on the stack.
Don't expect to get much done for a few weeks now. As I am traveling to Korea, Taiwan and Japan at the end of this week
for about 10 days. So I suspect that this week will involve tidying up my garage before I leave.
Seriously. This is amazing. I'm so impressed.
Congrats on the dalek build *waves hi-Pam from Gallifrey!* It looks great and I am enjoying reading about your progress...
For me, I'll stick with my yarn daleks!
I wish I was not so far away from Stewart. I could be there while this is being built shooting a documentary about it. Dalek Confidential or something along those lines.
24th August 2008
Well, I'm back from Asia and my family has returned from the UK. Got a little bit done today.
Since my wife is home, a lot of cleaning of dust from everything in the garage was achieved
and only a small bit of Dalek contruction occurred.
I cut out the opening in the base of the shoulders
removed as much excess material from the inside (to lighten them) as I could. Then built the obligitary
Dalek measuring tool and marked up the lines for the top shoulder band.
Nothing worthy of a photo (except perhaps the sparkling garage).
1st Sept 2008
It was a holiday weekend here (Labor [Labour for those in the UK] Day) so I had intentions of lots of progress. However, after lots of family activities involving State Parks,
sleepovers and swimming pools, only a small amount of progress was achieved.
Used Bondo Body Filler to cover the unsightly gaps in my shoulder cladding that will not be cover by additional bands. Let dry and sand.
Attach spacer blocks for top shoulder band.
Attach lower rear spacer blocks and mark up front for lower front spacer blocks. (hi-tech Dalek measuring device device depicted).
Added front lower space blocks, measured out front detail.
This is as far as I have got. Plan is to add cladding to the spacers attached then build the gunboxes. I intend to mark up where the gunbox holes need to be, attach the
space blocks for the centre detail, then fit the boxes and finish the cladding.
September 2nd 2008
Got concerned over the neck cage. I have never felt happy with it. When it was on the stack it never looked quite right (see pictures in previous post).
Well, I finally put my finger on what is wrong, it has a twist in it, i.e. the uprights are not vertical, they all lean slightly to the right. Thus there is a slight anti-clockwise turn
in the rings as you move from the bottom to the top. So it needs to be stripped back and redone.
I have taken one strut out as a test (considering they were attached to the rings
by screws, nails and glue - I wasn't sure if they would come out). Fortunately, looks like I just need to buy some more lumber for struts, not make a new set of rings.
September 3rd 2008
dismantled the wonky neck cage.
Inspection of the dismantled pieces suggests that perhaps I hadn't been too careful about how vertical the neck ring notches were.
Guess I need to open up the notches and reassemble in the presence of a spirit level. I don't have the will power to carry on with that at the moment so am going back to the shoulders.
6th September 2008
started making up the gunboxe. Glued side panel details in first. Looks okay on the outside, will finish off with Bondo car body filler.
Here are finished gunboxes (as I finished the second one I realized that the top is not big enough but I will fix that after I've cut the gun Holes.
8th Spetember 2008
Got a bit done tonight. Put on some of the upper shoulder cladding. Managed to get the top trimmed and a little of the lower edge at the rear.
Will try and finish the upper shoulder cladding, tomorrow after work, try and start on the lower portion, if I can.
[QUOTE BY= Doctor Whoovie] 8th Spetember 2008
Will try and finish the upper shoulder cladding, tomorrow after work, try and start on the lower portion, if I can.
You have to admire these Daleks - with all the work that goes into them :-)
Cheers, daveac (who has no idea why he's up so late!)
16th September 2008
Progress is slow, but ongoing. Finished off the top shoulder cladding and trimmed it. Added the cladding below the gunbox location.
I will never underestimate how long this part takes again, glue (at least the one I'm using) dries S .... L .... O .... W .... L .... Y !!
Tidied up the garage again, as I'm off to Greece for a conference tomorrow then at another in The Hague next week.
No further progress expected for a fortnight
5th October 2008
Have returned from my European travels. Got a little work done at the weekend.
Firstly, I proceeded with the task which I was most nervous about. Cutting the Gunbox holes in the shoulders.
Considering that I hadn't screwed the shoulders up yet, this appeared to be the perfect opportunity to do so.
Anyway, holes were cut. So far, so good.
Put the gunboxes in, and confirmed what I had realized just after completing my initial pass on the gunboxes (mentioned above somewhere)
The tops were too small.
Took some remedial action and increased the size of the tops.
Here are revised gun boxes sitting in place.
Set about the shoulders with a spirit level, meter stick, card plan etc. etc. Once I was sure everything was in place and square I glued boxes into place
and allowed to dry. All dimensions seem good at the moment. Next on the agenda is completing the lower rear collar, then add outer bottom
collar, the front cutout detail and the small "collar" pieces above the gunboxes.
All the visible glued areas should be covered by either the additional collars or the detail regions.
[QUOTE BY= Doctor Whoovie] 5th October 2008
Have returned from my European travels. Got a little work done at the weekend.
Well done Stewart - keep working and posting pictures - daveac.
12th October 2008
More slow, but steady progress.
Put on the spacer blocks for the front detail and strips above the gunboxes.
Then added the front detail.
Attached the left side lower shoulder collar and trimmed the top edge.
I am glad that body filler is so versatile, as there are quiet a few gaps etc. to be filled.
I will do the lower collar on the right hand side in the next couple of days once the lefthand side has dried.
Spent some time this evening revisiting my neck section. I enlarged the strut holes in the rings, hopefully I should get the neck section
back together this week, minus the twist that was present last time.
It keeps on looking better and better. We need something like this for our trip to Boston for the 45th anniversary. Maybe we can have Peter Davison come out of it.
Keep up the great work and keep the progress reports coming.
14th October 2008
Added the collar detail above the gunboxes and the other lower half collar tonight
Once the glue dries can trim them tomorrow night then add the spacer blocks for the final outer lower collar
16th October 2008
Trimmed back the hard board on the inner lower collar. Then added the spacers for the outer lower collar.
Hope to add that tomorrow. The end of the shoulder section appears to be in sight.
After that it is foam, filler and sanding.
October 19th 2008
Summary: Progress followed by set-back followed by change of direction
1. Cut the from lower front band, and glued it in. Everything held in place by a couple of clamps and some nails, like so
All well and good, however I didn't soak the hardboard before I attached it.
2. Once the glue was dry and I removed the clamps, the hardboard straightened itself and pulled away from the spacer blocks
pulling out nails etc. it actually ripped away a layer of the hardboard which was still glues to the spacers.
Anyway, put it back in place with "loads" of glue. This time all stayed attached, however when I trimmed the bottom of the collar off with the jigsaw (as per usual). The hardboard started splitting. The only other time this happend was on an upper collar section which, now I think about it, didn't get soaked prior to application either.
Moral of the story: Soaking your hardboard before applying it to curved surfaces reduces stress in the board and lets it conform to the shape more easily (It therefore also reduces stress in the Dalek builder).
3. At this point am total Pi$$ed off with doing shoulders, so decided to move on to something else for a break. I have been under pressure from various household members to give some space back in the garage so I have decided to the casters to the fender and attached said fender to the skirt.
So off to Lowes and bought 3 5" casters (one with a brake). $9.98 each ($13 with brake).
Whilst I was there I picked up a 1" diameter broom handle and a 1"Forstner drill bit, to use the peg locator method of lining up skirt to fender.
Let me start off by saying the Forstner drill bit is really neat and certainly fun to use.
Firstly, I turned the skirt up side down and drilled four 1" holes in the base. The turned it right side up and located it on the fender and centered up. I marked up the locations of the four holes and also the large hole in the bottom of the skirt, since my fender still had a solid top.
Cut-out the large hole in the fender, then used the Forstner bit to make 1" holes about halfway through the fender top.
Next I cut 4 lengths of the broom handle, each about 3cm long. I used the power sander to rounf of the top of each. I put one of these "pegs" into the fender holes, then checked that the skirt went over these correctly. Fortunately it did. Then I glued the pegs in place. After the glue was dry I applied screws in from the other side of the fender just to make sure that the pegs were not coming out.
Then put fender and skirt together to check alignment. Everything is AOK inside and out (though the inside could do with a bit of tidying up).
When they are located together, it feels pretty secure (I am intending to use a more robust method of attaching them together at a later date, this is just for rough centering).
If I attached the casters direcly to the fender top, I would only have about 1cm ground clearance, which is obviously inadequate. So I spent this evening building some blocks to raise the clearance to about 5cm. The struts on the underside of the fender meann that the blocks have to be interesting shapes resulting in them taking a fair bit of time. So far one is complete and the others need finishing off tomorrow.
October 22nd 2008
Well just finishing up the caster installation before returning to the shoulders.
Drew some paper templates for blocks to fit between the fender struts. Cut double thicknesses of 3/4" MDF for each.
Bolted the castors to the first block and drilled recessed spaces for the boltheads into the second (another great excuse for fun with the Forstner drill bit).
Glued the recessed blocks to the fender.
Once the glue dried overnight, attached the castor blocks to the recessed blocks using 1" screws.
Whole fender glides nicely. Too nicely, it doesn't want to sit still on my slightly sloped garage floor. I am now glad I got at least one caster
with a brake. I am very pleased with the locator peg arrangement the skirt just pops on and into place in a couple of seconds.
Here is the fender with skirt attached and the complete stack (well dome plug on the ground and a dismantled neck in the background.
The gap between the fender bottom and the ground seems huge (about 55mm). Looks okay in the photos but I can see the casters easily
"in the flesh" so to speak.
Another small task completed.
27th October 2008
Got a fair bit done this weekend, but the results don't look hugely different.
Firstly, finished the outer lower collars on the shoulders (hurray!). Started a little filling on the gaps and front detail too. Mainly so that the expandable foam used to fill the spacer voids doesn't start squirting out where I don't want it.
Need to tidy up the filler a little, make sure all the collar edges are close to level then I'll fill the gaps with expandable foam.
Also spent some time applying filler to fender. Previous images probably didn't show it too much but some of the panels were pretty wonky. Looks much better now.
Spent quite a bit of time working on the neck section, should have it together sometime this week.
Finally, on Sunday my garage was invaded by the Sinister Davranda (wearing an equally Evil Hannah Montana T-shirt)
31st October 2008
Rebuilt my neck over the last couple of evenings. Everything looks straight now.
Hopefully the neck blocks will cover-up al the glue padding up the enlarged neck
Stewart, your dalek is looking great!
THanks for the updates!
[QUOTE BY= ExtermaKnitter] Stewart, your dalek is looking great!
THanks for the updates![/QUOTE]
Thanks from me too.
Keep the updates coming!
5th November 2008
Pam & Dave,
Thanks for the encouragement, nice to see someones watching.
On Sunday I did some filling of the fender and shoulders then last night I taped up the shoulders.
So this evening was (as Adam from Project Dalek says) "Fun With Foam" night. Unfortunately, I ran out of foam about
80% of the way through and had to pop down to Home Depot for a second can.
"What the Heck is he doing?" I hear you all say, stay tuned all will be revealed.
Any more progress?
Not much. My mum and Dad came to stay for three weeks over Thanks Giving and we went to Las Vegas. After they left my Kids have been competing in various Sporting and Musical Events, so time has been scarce.
I have trimmed the foam back and started applying Car body filler to them. However we had a cold snap and the filler doesn't dry well at tmperatures below 50F so I had to stop.Temperatures are back up into the 60s now, so I am hoping to get back into the swing of things this week. Perhaps there will be a significant update at the end of the weekend.
Thanks for Asking.
Any further updates? Or did you decide to just dump it into a pond somewhere (kidding).
I am due un update.
Some progress has been made, but I have had to slack a little. There have been lots of family things going on (my parents over from the UK, three kids in multiple sports each etc) and many work related stresses (just finished write 3 technical papers for a conference).
Hope to get cracking as the nice weather returns. It is much easier to spend time in the garage (and do sanding or sawing in the yard/driveway) when it's light in Evenings and warm.
Need to finish before the Daleks invade in 2150.
You are mentioned as a Dalek builder (and an authority in such) in the latest episode of the Sonic Newsdriver.
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