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Fantastic 3d work by spica

Started by domvar, Jan 17, 2012, 06:31 pm

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Jan 17, 2012, 06:31 pm Last Edit: Jan 23, 2012, 10:08 am by domvar
Created by spica in 2005


Hello, yes, I did these several years ago now and first posted them on the other forum whose name escapes me. I'm very pleased to see they are still around online and very glad you like them. You are of course welcome to make any use of them you like. They were done from the Trench plans, (two versions), the GPO plans weren't available at the time. They are as accurate as I can Make them, though of course there is an element of conjecture. They drew on all the info that was available back then, (2005). There is one mistake that I know of and that is that the topmost roof steps are not quite of the correct thickness in relation to each other, one is too thick as I recall. Its the result of misreading a photo. Apart from that I think they are accurate, I took all the pains I could. The steel frame is, of course, wholly conjectural but it's about right for a welded mild steel construction that would effectively reinforce cast concrete on this scale. It was done on vectorworks CAD and rendered in poser, then finished with photoshop. Whatever tools I happened to have access to. Somehow there are a couple of unfinished versions of the base ring, which utterly mystifies me as I didn't think I posted any that weren't complete. But unless they somehow quantum tunneled their way out of my computer onto the internet I suppose I must have been asleep at the wheel.
I have several more than these (I think) and if anyone wants me to post them I will do so, but it will be subject to a delay of a month or two as I am changing from old to new computer and up to my neck in other priorities at the moment, you know how it is. I have a couple of vaguely related bits in the shape of designs for a tardis roundel in the form of the prydonian seal, several variants. If anyone wants them I will also post at some point. Let me know.
It's a strange coincidence that I just happened to look in and see this post so soon after you had posted it! I was chuffed to bits to see it and if it is in any way useful all the better. I've always thought that it would be a wonderful thing if someone were ever in a position to attempt the reconstruction of a real concrete Met box. It's such a magnificent piece of street furniture from an era when classically trained architects like Mackenzie-Trench made things pleasing to the eye as a matter of course. It's all down to the proportions, which are very carefully worked out.
Once again thanks for re-posting it and cheering me up considerably on what wasn't the best of days.
All the best, Spica.


Hi Spica,

I remember you from the boards back in the day, you must have posted these beuaties just after I went AWOL, can't believe I missed them  :o

I for one would love to see anything else you have available, particularly Met box related.

Domvar who posted these up is aiming to build a concrete box, and if I'm honest with myself, I too would like to do the same but presently I am concerning myself with a model to test the construction method, which I started prior to seeing your pictures.

Very nice work mate.


Thanks, once again I'm glad if its any help. I will post whatever else I have as soon as my computer situation is sorted. Ta.


Jan 23, 2012, 08:52 am #4 Last Edit: Jan 23, 2012, 10:20 am by domvar
Good to see you spica I envy your skills these are truly fantastic.

Any additional Pics you have would be very welcome. Do you still have the models ?

A 3d rotation particularly of the base and ring beams would be a massive help to me when I start mould building.

Long way off yet though.

Looking at the GPO plans I think your steel frame is very good the panels you seem to have spot on.

The corner posts appear to have 4 thin bars running through them rather than 1 thick and the base looks to have 2 hoops rather than the flat steel.

As it is not going to show I'm tempted to build using your frame design as it is probably better engineered than the original and slightly easier to achieve than trying to get re-bars to levitate.

I'm so glad your happy that I posted them.



Thanks again. Re the steel frame, the more I look at the GPO plans, the more I think I might have overdone it a bit with my design. I think perhaps I rather underestimate the tensile strength of the concrete. The smaller diameter bars are probably a lot more structurally sound. Come to think of it, that's exactly the way the old style concrete streetlamp posts were reinforced. You could see the small bars rusting away where they had been chipped. In my version the steel is doing load bearing work the concrete could easily do, and the thick bar through the post could render it weaker than four small ones. On a different issue I take it you would prepare the components in wood and cast them using vinyl or silicon moulds. I suppose the moulds back in the 30s would have been wooden negatives made by a pattern maker. Imagine the difficulty of that!


I was planning on making wood negatives but cheating with polystyrene or cast vine for the panel recess's / corner details

I think that the weight would distort anything less than a wood frame.


Ah yes, that's a good plan. Come to think of it you are right about the weight factor. Even in a robust vinyl mould that could be a problem. Do post some pics when you have some. I will post some more of these when the computer change is sorted, but the bridge is out and we're right out in the sticks so it'll take a good few weeks longer than would normally be the case. It's an intriguing project the concrete box, they were very robust little outbuildings, no wonder they had to do such a complete demolition job to remove them, (alas).

Rassilons Rod

Would the polystyrene be distorted if supported by wooden outer panels?
In the cities in the streets there's a tension you can feel,
The breaking strain is fast approaching, guns and riots.
Politicians gamble and lie to save their skins,
And the press get fed the scapegoats,
Public Enema Number One.


Depends on the volume of concrete for example the recesses in the big panels should be fine as the thickness of the concrete setting on top is only 1 inch.

I think the posts will need to be all wood mouldings except perhaps the fine details at the top.


Feb 04, 2012, 06:14 pm #10 Last Edit: Feb 04, 2012, 06:14 pm by galacticprobe
I tend to agree with Dom. Also, I would think this might be an issue near the bottom of the mould where most of the weight of the poured concrete would press outward against the vinyl until it set (gravity pulling all that concrete down and all that).

Making a wooden negative might not be too difficult if you used a sheet of plywood for the main wall, then marked out where the recesses are supposed to be, and then attached small cuts of plywood to those spots in the main wall to create the negative for the recesses. (And if you wanted bevelled edges, you could always use corner moulding to trim around the plywood cuts' edges.)

There would be some sealing involved to keep the concrete out of the seams, but considering how thick concrete can be mixed the sealing shouldn't be much of a problem. A small bead of waterproof wood glue around the edges should work. The mould release (rubbed on grease of some kind?) would also no doubt help with that.

"What's wrong with being childish?! I like being childish." -3rd Doctor, "Terror of the Autons"


maby cast the parts horizontal not vertical