MARS Center Shuttle -- Atlantis

Discussion in 'Space & Aeronautics' started by dhanners, Nov 23, 2008.

  1. underwoodl06

    underwoodl06 Member

    I second the notion for PotW, This entire assembly is outstandingly amazing. It looks like a replica of the actual orbiter stack. Truely amazing. Well done!!!!
  2. dhanners

    dhanners Member

    Here are some additional detail shots. I sat down and figured out what was what, and here is what I wound up using:

    Atlantis -- I used the Fortezza shuttle, scaled up to 104 percent so the model would be in 1/96th scale, but only one part was used uncorrected or unaltered: the nosecap. Even at that, I glued the piece together, rubbed it with wood glue and then sanded it smooth. Other changes include adding the AFRSI, correcting the markings, correcting the wing leading-edge RCC panels, accurizing the SSMEs and OMS bells, thickening the body flap, correcting the HRSI pattern on the belly, adding colored paper in various spots and coloring the OMS engine housings. If my count is correct, I used 11 different types of paper.

    External Tank -- The ET is primarily scratchbuilt, but I did use Bill Spencer's parts for the nose and bottom dome (scaled up, of course) as templates for my own parts. All the plumbing, forward and aft orbiter attachment fittings and other bits and pieces were scratchbuilt. Alfonso X. Moreno's color diagrams were of great help. By my count, I used eight different types of paper. Basswood was used on a couple of things: the LO2 feedline fairing and a couple of small pieces on the aft orbiter attachment fitting. I used a toothpick for the spike on the ET's nose, and silver thread was used for the two smaller plumbing lines. I also used a piece of square copper tubing in the intertank to provide an anchor for the forward SRB attachments.

    Solid Rocket Boosters -- The SRBs are largely scratchbuilt, but I used Bill Spencer's parts (altered a bit) as templates for the frustum and nosecap, as well as the aft skirt, although detail was added to those parts as well. I used Bill's parts for the flexible insulation blankets on the bottom of the SRBs, but I painted them tan to replicate how the current insulation looks. (The insulation has changed color over time. That bit was a bear to research....) I also used Bill's parts for the hold-down fittings on the aft skirt, but built them differently -- his hold-down fittings are one piece each, and mine is comprised of three, and I also added detail that aren't included on his parts, i.e., on current SRBs, there is a triangular plate on each side of the hold-down fitting that connects the base of the fitting to the base of the aft skirt. I added detail to the outer portion of the nozzle. The SRBs contain the only piece that I used without adding detail or altering it in some way: the interior of the SRB nozzles. I used nine different types of paper on the SRBs.

    Attached Files:

  3. Shin_kazama

    Shin_kazama Member

    NASA should hire you D.
  4. SAustin16

    SAustin16 Member

    Mr. Hanners,

    Once again you have raised the bar several levels with this model.

    Outstanding. Love your photos.
  5. underwoodl06

    underwoodl06 Member

    Hmm, looking at the Aft attachment, there is a silver 'hook' on the right side of the fitting. What is that? I can't find it in any of the pictures I've seen before of the ET.
  6. dhanners

    dhanners Member

    The hook (it's actually gray) is an umbilical tray and should reach up all the way to the Orbiter, which is something I need to fix.

    Here's a photo of the real thing:

    Attached Files:

  7. underwoodl06

    underwoodl06 Member

    Ahh, thanks for the clarification David. Much appreciated.
  8. Hans Christian

    Hans Christian Active Member

    Now THAT'S a Shuttle... :inw:
  9. Shin_kazama

    Shin_kazama Member

    i hope dhanners does what i like to do with my models, when i was younger and had more time:


    to see if what i made really does fly like the real thing...

    i made a tunnel made of cartons, with a large fan sucking air from a tube 10 inches wide....
  10. wedge

    wedge Member

    Dhanners... now you are my new idol :p:eek:
  11. Bengt F

    Bengt F Active Member

    Atlantis Space Shuttle Stack & Buran-Energia - Pair of Diamonds

    Congratulations, David,

    Mission accomplished! What a pair in 1/96th scale:


    Thanks again for all the wonderful photos (I got about 70 in a rough count!) and the detailed and instructive build account - this has been very enjoyable and highly educational, in the art of advanced card modeling and scratch model building.

    /Bengt :thumb:
  12. lancer525

    lancer525 Member

    David, you are so far off the chain with these models, that it's hard to believe they're actually models!

    I stand by my previous statement: The DIRECT team got the wrong guy to build their demonstration models.

    I would so love to work with you in updating and improving my J-120 & J-232 models. Are you up for that? ;)
  13. dhanners

    dhanners Member

    I don't know if I'm up for that. Maybe. Not sure what my next project should be. Actually, I'm still "tweaking" a detail or two on the Atlantis stack model. Did a little this morning and will finish it tonight. It involves some details on the three stiffening rings on the SRBs.

    As for the next project, I gave some thought to building a 1/96th Mobile Launch Platform, but I came to the conclusion that I wouldn't have display space for it. And once you build the MLP, you're pretty much committed to building the Crawler-Transporter.

    Thought about doing Ken's X-15A-2, but I may just wait for him to come up with his model of the original X-15, 66670. (Ken's model is great, but aesthetically, I was never a huge fan of the "stretched" X-15A-2 with its fuel tanks....)

    Some months ago, I started on a model of the Manned Orbiting Laboratory, based on some recent drawings of what the classified project would've really looked like had it been built:

    I got the Gemini B built, and cut the tube for the MOL and cut out some of the "skins" to cover it, and started looking at various Hubble Telescope models to see if there were parts I could "re-purpose" into MOL's telescope.

    But who knows, maybe I will try my hand at the "Direct" model. I don't think the paper that I used on my 1/96th-scale ET would be the right texture for 1/144th scale, but I may have some other paper that would do.

    I'll have to sit down and figure all that stuff out.
  14. lancer525

    lancer525 Member

    If you don't think you're going to be able to help with the redesign of DIRECT, what say you to working with me on designing an XB-70 in 1/48? LOL~!
  15. Hans Christian

    Hans Christian Active Member

    Now that's what I call a set of spaceflight bookends... :inw:
  16. gpw

    gpw Member

    What a wonderful build. Thank you for this incredible thread with its phantastic photos. I love your models.

  17. kk135

    kk135 Member

    Would the old medical tape technique be the right scale for your Atlantis.

    Excellent job BTW!!
  18. peter taft

    peter taft Senior Member

    One word to describe you and your work.....

  19. dhanners

    dhanners Member

    Thanks for the kind words. I think the medical tape would work, but I had wanted to stick with paper of some sort. Medical tape would certainly be more pliable around some of the compound curves, but I think what I came up with wound up working ok.

    And I should stress that the real Orbiters really do have a rough and uneven texture where the AFRSI blankets are applied. I once walked around Discovery when it was in the Orbiter Processing Facility and was amazed at how rough those areas looked.
  20. ekuth

    ekuth Active Member

    Damn! I'm glad this thread was necro'd! :eek:

    Having built the stack myself, I can understand the amount of work that went into this... superb!

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