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New, New TardisBuilders!

Tennant Era Console

Started by superrichi1a, Sep 14, 2014, 09:50 pm

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Feb 23, 2015, 08:30 am #45 Last Edit: Feb 23, 2015, 08:30 am by galacticprobe
Scary... maybe... but you're doing a fine - make that "Fantastic!" - job so far!

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


I love your comment about not having enough room. Of course we shouldn't let a little thing like having no room get in the way of building these magnificent edifices!
I've promised myself another Dalek after the TARDIS is finished, then, who knows, maybe I will start that console, perhaps I could loan it to a local Sci-fi/comic shop to look after it... After that, I think a full size Jagaroth battle cruiser to sit on the roof of my flat! ;)

All the best,



Haha thanks Russell :)
To tell the truth this no room thing will become an issue soon - at the moment I can store all the big bits, like the ribs, stacked in a corner of the garage, but once they've been textured and dressed that will risk damaging them, so I'll really have to think of something! Most annoyingly just not being able to build it standing like MD and Kiwidoc is limiting, as I can't just keep adding bits as I go along and the interconnectivity between each panel and rib wil be limited :-\
I nearly swung a good deal with this thing though! Last Easter the idea was raised that the trees behind my police box needed cutting back and the land tidying up... upon measuring I discovered if they were trimmed enough I could fit a 10ft by 10ft shed back there, fit a corner of it into the TARDIS rear and grow the surrounding bushes up the side. I could then decorate the inside as a console room inside my police box! (Which would either have been War Doctor or Blackpool as those consoles are smaller and would male it just about do-able, if still a squeeze!)
The idea was abandoned as being too unrealistic, though, as the Police Box needed repairs, sheds are stupidly expensive, it'd be hours of work and even with the trees cut back it'd be a difficult squeeze.
Basically it was a pipe dream that so nearly came to fruition, but sadly reality got in the way!
Isn't it how ironic that we have to think of solutions out of the box, in order to build our boxes a lot of the time?


Feb 25, 2015, 05:36 am #48 Last Edit: Feb 25, 2015, 06:00 am by galacticprobe
Quote from: superrichi1a on Feb 24, 2015, 10:49 am
...but sadly reality got in the way!

"Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one." -Albert Einstein

Or my personal favorite:

"Reality is a crutch for people who can't handle science fiction." -Dr. Isaac Azimov (It's a quote I've come to live by!)

I can't remember, is your TARDIS "movable" at all? If you can shift her a little (in Space), then maybe one day in the not to distant future you can indeed fit that 10' x 10' shed behind her without it being such a squeeze, and have her back open up into a Console Room. If she's not movable at all, well, maybe you can still figure something out. After all, that will take time to plan, so it's not like you have to get it done within the next few months. (So don't clog that pipe dream just yet. Keep it on the back burner for now. One day it could flow to fruition!)

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


Hehe I can hope! Technically is isn't movable, and is sealed as best I can from the elements. Yet if I assembled it, I'm sure I could disassemble it and move it! It might not fit back together as well and would need a lot of re-sealing, but I bet if required it could be done. :)
Isn't it how ironic that we have to think of solutions out of the box, in order to build our boxes a lot of the time?


Yeah, reality can be a bitch.
That's why I spend so much time watching Dr Who & especially building props. You get so absorbed in it you really do forget your stresses & strains.
It becomes almost like a Zen experience (not to get too mystical!)

Hope your box doesn't need too much repair work...



Very well put, russellsuthern. That's exactly the reason why I myself build props.

Also, I don't think I've commented on this thread before, but either way I wish you the best of look in your work. I for one think it would look incredibly awesome if you were to place the console in a shed with your Box serving as an entrance (minus the back all of course).

Kind regards, The14thDr :D
"Would you like a jelly baby?"


Thank you builders, and yes
14th I'm very excited to hear you chime in :)
I'm a bit pushed for time, currently on a train, 'so I'll try to keep this brief. I owe some PMs too so I'm trying to keep up! I also apologise for the spelling and grammar errors undoubtedly in this, no time to spell check!
I see totally what you mean about builds becoming, well, therapy almost. The nature of my work is that I will often spend long periods in very intensive work, and thenong periods with nothing much to do. It's at these times I start to feel a bit lonely, bored and stir-crazy, and that's when my builds are most valuable. I could, and do, spend days happily whiling away at them, and they keep me sane! :)
I'd also still love to do a TARDIS/shed arrangement - inspired by Scarfwearer and Whovian Almighty of course. I have actually looked recently into renting one of the council house garages down the road from me, or indeed a storage locker. It seems to me I could keep the console in there, use a Police Box as an entrance, have some console room walls AND keep it set up constantly. I wish I could do this, and actually the cost isn't prohibitive, but rather it's the idea of travelling there and back and making best use of the shape. I think it's be a hassle and very restricting. So I think for now I'll stick to the console and perhaps even build a few walls (Tennant or War Doctor) out of 3mm hardboard and bring them out from time to time.
All speculation, though!
Isn't it how ironic that we have to think of solutions out of the box, in order to build our boxes a lot of the time?


Mar 14, 2015, 10:48 pm #53 Last Edit: Mar 14, 2015, 10:58 pm by superrichi1a
Greetings humanoid meat-sacks,
I've been off-forum for a while, as I've probably said several times over the last 6 months I'm currently working a job which requires awkward and ridiculous hours, a disproportionate amount of my own time and attention span and also necessitates that I spend a lot more time in the gym than I'm used to. This is tiring me out physically and mentally, especially seeing as I finish in 2 weeks and as such pressure is on to get everything completed, as it were. That explains my absence, and more importantly why I've struggled to reply to PMs and emails. Sorry folks! And additionally if these photos I'm about to post come out wonky I'm again sorry, I'm posting from an iPad here which of course doesn't always work, but frankly I've given up finding time to use my PC, it's that old now it just takes so long to load and navigate the Internet that I can't spare the time :-\

A couple of weeks back I did another console test fit to remind myself how it all goes together and to check everything was looking in proportion - as you'll remember I was concerned the Central dais I was making was too tall and not tapered enough. Here are some pictures :)



Everything still fits! And I added some random flotsam to the ribs to build up their height a bit to try and get a better perspective on the height of the dais (anyone notice Iron Man's arc reactor?).
Having done the fit test I'm actually a bit more confident the dais is acceptable. I think it's a tad too tall still, but looking at in real life it really does look very close to the reference im going off, and I think the more prominent issue is the tapering, which I can't do much about really :-\
It doesn't photograph perfectly either, this prop is a real bugger to photograph, I'm discovering, as you can never get enough in to see more than 1/3 of it and as a result you get a warped profile which makes the top look smaller than it actually is - so in real life it looks a bit better!
I'm off again, thanks for reading and I'm trying to catch up!
Isn't it how ironic that we have to think of solutions out of the box, in order to build our boxes a lot of the time?


Mar 15, 2015, 08:07 am #54 Last Edit: Mar 15, 2015, 08:07 am by galacticprobe
I think she looks rather smart! You're doing a fantastic job with the "neck", and the size looks good. If you're still worried about it being a bit too tall, then you can always slide the lower collar down over the very top of the neck a little; that will make it look shorter (if that's an option, that is).

And as always, with this beauty, you've got the Envy(tiny).jpg flowing again!

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


I've been back at work at this for a little while now, but today is the first day I think I've made any notable progress. It's been about half a year since I actually did any serious driving at the major bulk of the beast, as as such I've found it's taken me a little while to really get things moving again. I'd forgotten how I was going to do certain things, items I was sure I'd left there I found elsewhere etc, little jobs I forgot needed doing still need doing, as it turns out. All that boring admin stuff!

Rather than just post little miscellaneous updates I thought this would be more helpful. This is a schematic for the demat lever which I've drawn up. I can't in any way, shape, or form or flavour say how accurate it is. It's based party of a very helpful shot of MD's demat lever with a measuring tape (hope you don't mind!) and part off pictures of the real deal. Drawing not totally to scale, but I hope you can read the numbers. This is the second time I've had to draw up these damn things as I binned the first set after I tracked down an original boat lever! Safe to say, that sale fell through and I was left at square one...


Not much else to report in completion yet other than the time rotor. I'd been considering for a while whether to use flat clear acrylic or corrugated acrylic for the time rotor. Of course, flat has the advantage of being accurate, but corrugated is easier to find, bend, is cheaper, often clearer, and I have to say after looking at how MD's rotor turned out I think actually looks more unique and interesting than the real one. So safe to say I went for the corrugated in the shop today! I've discussed with Dino in the past plans on what we'll do with the actual rotor - I'd love to have inner moving columns and discs, and I may still put them in, but as I said from the off this build will be dictated heavily by cost and practicality, buying enough acrylic tubes to make that sort of interior will cost a huge amount of money and it will be a right bugger to transport and store safely. As such I may think up an alternative solution using rope lights which may look more visually interesting to the casual viewer/party goer (the most common use for this) so watch this space. If that happens though the corrugated plastic will stand me in good stead because it already naturally has a vertical tubular effect, from a distance it should look just right ;D
Isn't it how ironic that we have to think of solutions out of the box, in order to build our boxes a lot of the time?


Rightio, so, update.
A couple of thrilling episodes ago you'll remember that Ken started talking to Audrey and now the whole Street is in a flutter because Faye- oh wait sorry wrong show. :-\
A couple of thrilling episodes ago you'll remember that I built my thingy, alternatively known as the "central dais" or the "neck" and the next stage was to saturate the cloth in fibreglass resin to harden up its shell for painting. First matter of admin is to report I have done the first coat of this and all seems to be OK. As Dino predicted the fabric was somewhat thin and there's a bit of flex in it currently. This doesn't worry me too much as I'm going to do another coat anyway and if it still flexes it'll be easy enough to add some matting onto the inside. Great upside, though, is that it's very light! So that's hopefully worked out nicely.
I have now turned my attention to the ceramic rings above this section. Alternate methods for this have been used on the forum so far. MD was lucky enough to get a found object he could repurpose, whilst Kiwidoc at first attempted to sculpt them out of polystyrene (looked all fine to me!) but then instead settled on making them completely out of MDF. The workman ship on his final design shows and they really are about as close to perfect as anyone can get ;) Mine are more middle-ground I think.
I used the same basic construction method as the central dais. 3 9mm MDF rings, the widest in the middle, separated by strips of wood. Here is the framework of the larger disc:

IMG_0252.JPG  IMG_0253.JPG

I then wrapped each disc in fabric, here's how the smaller disc looked after this process:


The next step will be to saturate these in fibreglass resin, fill, sand and paint as appropriate.
Some things I've learned from going through this process 3 times now: Firstly, when building the framework remember to factor into your measurements how much the MDF discs will add to the overall height of the part, it may seem basic but it's too easy just to assume it'll be negligible or forget - I fell foul of this twice! Secondly, use a relatively thick fabric, this will soak up more fibreglass resin and hence be stronger. Thirdly, try and pick a fabric with a bit of stretch in it - this will keep it more taut as you add the resin and make it more difficult for folds and wrinkles to form as you clad the framework. When I cladded my first (larger) ring I used an old heavy curtain liner, this has left awful folds and wrinkles and I just hope they'll fill in alright! When I did the second I used an equally thick but slightly stretchy old bed liner, this disc is far more tidy and professional looking and will require little cosmetic shaping.

So finally I stacked all 3 pieces up to get a look:

IMG_0262.JPG  IMG_0268.JPG

A few things immediately jump out. I do believe my central dais is a tad too tall, but having stacked that up on the console I think it looks better than you'd think. That lower disc causes me issues, though. It's diameter at the largest point is too small. I had heard and figured out numerous numbers for this, the smallest being 31 inches and the largest 39 inches. As best as I could tell it looked to me like 35 inches, so I went for that. But then I realised I didn't have the MDF to do that and I had to shrink it down to a more modest 32 inches. That still looks on the money I think, but then I made the error of making the ring too tall, over 6 inches (part of that was forgetting to add the thickness of the MDF rings when I was planning - rookie mistake!) so the overall effect is a rather chunky squat looking disc without the graceful curvature of Glens.
I think it'll look better on the console than it looks here, the console after all is a huge beast and I'm sure compared to it a disc which looks slightly too chunky will not be overly noticeable. Nevertheless it will annoy me! Happily though, it's not a big issue, I need a third disk to sit on top of my time rotor, not overly bothered if that's too big so I'll just move this one at a later date and build a better-looking replacement. For now though, I need to focus on what the console NEEDS and so that disc stays.
Tomorrow weather permitting I'll get the whole thing out, fit test, look at proportions and see how it all starts to look when one piece. I'll also start work on that demat lever!
Thanks for reading :)
Isn't it how ironic that we have to think of solutions out of the box, in order to build our boxes a lot of the time?


Apr 12, 2015, 05:29 am #57 Last Edit: Apr 12, 2015, 05:30 am by galacticprobe
Very nicely done, Richard! And I like your idea of simply moving the larger collar to the column's top (where it's "chunky" look won't be noticed) and building a 'slimmer' replacement for the lower end of the column: an easy fix to a difficult problem. Bravo!

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


Apr 15, 2015, 04:00 pm #58 Last Edit: Apr 15, 2015, 04:14 pm by superrichi1a
Thank you Dino!
Progress as of late has not been the glorious productive awe-inspiring rapid construction monolith I was daydreaming about. First, the warm weather broke and we got a couple of very windy days which made any serious building difficult, then I got a small illness, which still hasn't totally gone, so I've been bed-ridden for most of the week. Nevertheless, I've done some stuff the cumulative effect of which means I have something resembling an update today :)
Firstly I assembled the whole console to check how everything was stacking up proportionally:

IMG_0277.JPG  IMG_0285.JPG

What do you guys think? Does everything look about the right shape? To my eye it's that central section that sticks out, a bit too tall and the lower disc a bit too chunky, though I was prepared for that and am planning to take measures to rectify it. Is it too noticeable? Does everything else look OK?
I have continued to fibreglass the dais and upper ring, that's going smoothly enough, I've left the bottom for the time being for obvious reasons.

Next I wanted to start work on the demat lever. I made a crude cardboard model to check the proportions of the plans I posted earlier. Though they looked good on paper when placed on the console I did spot some things that could best be changed.

IMG_0283.JPG  IMG_0282.JPG


The general width of the main section I think is a bit too much. Over 20mm would be shaved off naturally when I used the thicker ply instead of cardboard but I still slimmed down the middle recess by half an inch, just for good measure. I also reduced the height of the main section by one inch as well, meaning excluding the base, which is 9mm thick, the unit now stands at 4 inches tall. Hopefully the adjustments are for the better!
I have started constructing the final lever unit but am waiting on a rocker switch before I can make most of the parts, I need to know accurately what size it is before I can incorporate in its housing. Basically, the switch unit will be a shameless copy of MD's ;D Hope you don't mind!

Next I started work on the rotor.

IMG_0289.JPG  IMG_0290.JPG

It's 6 feet tall and approximately 18 inches in diameter, made by bolting one sheet of corrugated plastic onto another then bolting them together again having curved them round into a cylinder. I'm rather glad I went with the corrugated type, seeing as I'm not shooting for exact accuracy in this build I enjoy the freedom to be able to change aspects up a bit and having seen the real rotor several times at the DWE I do think corrugated is more eye catching.
I'm unsure what will go inside it yet. I'm really hopeful I can put in an accurate rotor system like MD and Kiwidoc have done but frankly I'm not sure what I'd make it out of - this is still on a somewhat strict budget remember and clear plastic tubes are not cheap! So I'll have to have a think. Any ideas?

Finally today I've been hard at work reinforcing the rib sections so that the cladding doesn't lift away from the structure anywhere and I can start the texturing process. I was planning to use strong fibreglass for this but I'm sick of the stuff so I decided to use "No More Nails". I did 3 ribs in this way before ultimately deciding this glue really is just as pathetically hopeless as I'd always thought so I had a slight rethink and used hot glue instead. I didn't think it would be strong enough but it's done a good job on 2 ribs so far so I'll see if I can complete the job using it. Perhaps standard wood PVA glue may have been the best choice for this job...
Isn't it how ironic that we have to think of solutions out of the box, in order to build our boxes a lot of the time?


Now that is a big column! (oo-er! Must have watched too many carry on films over Easter!)
Seriously, though, your idea to use corrugated plastic sheets to make the column is inspired & looks great!