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Chronodyne Generator Pepakura Build

Started by The14thDr, Sep 18, 2018, 10:53 am

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The14thDr

Sep 18, 2018, 10:53 am Last Edit: Sep 18, 2018, 08:52 pm by The14thDr
Following directly on from my http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?topic=9018 project, it's time to bring my digital build into  the real world!

'Pepakura', a form of papercraft, is so often used to build complex armour and costumes and I thought to myself, why not apply the same technique to building smaller props? After modelling one of these generators to the best of my abilities, I can now translate that into cardboard and (hopefully) achieve a greater level of accuracy in a shorter space of time! With my model successfully unfolded into a series of 2D templates, I printed them out and set to work. As is the case with 99% of my other builds, my material of choice throughout this will be cereal boxes and I aim to complete this project by spending as little money as possible.
generator_build_1.jpg


I chose not to print the two parts for the lower half of the generator because of how easy the circle and rectangle were to build by hand:
generator_build_2.JPG


For the top half of the generator, I used my templates to create the taper but added a second circle - solid except for 3 rough slots where the LEDs will shine through (with 2 pieces of thin plastic glued to the inside). I glued the top circle  template onto another piece of card before cutting out the three LED slots and using a drill for the smaller, 2mm holes.

The purpose of the second circle is that on the original props, the smaller holes didn't go all the way through to the inside of the generator and so they needed a solid backing. Plus, having two circles stacked on top of each other makes the top disc roughly the same thickness as on my 3D model.
generator_build_3.jpg
generator_build_4.JPG

Thanks for looking, more soon. :)
"Would you like a jelly baby?"

karsthotep

I didn't look through all of your impressive build library, but have you done pep before?   I know a lot of people do Pep builds for helmet masters with great success.  I am looking forward to seeing this one built, I thought it was a cool looking prop.
I want notes, lists and answers by the time I finish this here Juicy-a-Box! WARNING: I am Thirst-ay! And it is Fruit Punch! And it is Delicious!"

The14thDr

I agree, this is definitely one cool looking prop! :)

I have done Pep before, but never on this small a scale. I made a couple of Iron Man pieces earlier this year, and I suppose my Handles the Cyberman technically counts (while not actual Pep, it followed the same basic principles of paper templates transferred onto foam), but this was my first time unfolding my own files.

For smaller props such as this I often make my own templates anyway so this isn’t all that different, I just saved on time by designing all of the parts on a computer instead of drawing them by hand.
"Would you like a jelly baby?"

The14thDr

Sep 20, 2018, 11:59 am #3 Last Edit: Sep 20, 2018, 09:17 pm by The14thDr
Until I work out how best to add LEDs and battery access to my generator, I decided to ignore the main body for now and instead focus my attention on the 3 legs. Whereas this would normally take over an hour of working out angles and drawing complex nets, all I had to do was trace the templates onto a piece of card, cut them out and assemble with glue!

For the raised panels on either side of the first leg (on the left), I stacked together two layers of card to get the required thickness. I also covered the inside of each LED slot with 2 layers of thin plastic before filling the 3 legs with air-dry clay, just to add a bit of weight to the finished prop.
generator_build_5.jpg
To give you a sense of just how small these things are, they are standing on a 1cm (or 0.4 inch) grid.

Thanks for looking. :)
-- 14th
"Would you like a jelly baby?"

The14thDr

With the battery access I was able to kill two birds with one stone. After cutting a hole out of the bottom of the generator, I made a cardboard circle (50mm in diameter - the same as the rest of the generator) and glued 3 magnets to the bottom. I then glued another 3 magnets in the same positions on the inside of the generator so that the cover can easily be snapped in and out of place to add any electronics and change the batteries. Not only that, but by using magnets I can attach my Chronodyne Generator to any magnetic surface, just like the props in the show!

Plus, the magnets I used were pretty thin, so the gap they create is barely noticeable when I place the generator on a flat surface.
generator_build_6.jpg


The interior access solved, I could glue together the two halves of the generator's body and attach the three legs.
generator_build_7.jpg
"Would you like a jelly baby?"

karsthotep

OMG that is so freaking cool looking. 

  awesome work. 
I want notes, lists and answers by the time I finish this here Juicy-a-Box! WARNING: I am Thirst-ay! And it is Fruit Punch! And it is Delicious!"

galacticprobe

Sep 22, 2018, 04:09 am #6 Last Edit: Sep 22, 2018, 04:09 am by galacticprobe
Okay... so let me get this straight (since I can be quite dim at times, as many, including my wife, have reminded me): the genny had three different legs? I mean, I know there were three different style of legs, but I thought each genny had three of the same leg, giving three gennies, each with a different style of leg.

So one genny, with three different legs? (It does make the genny look even more impressive than it already did.)

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

The14thDr

Sep 22, 2018, 08:04 am #7 Last Edit: Sep 22, 2018, 11:06 am by The14thDr
Quote from: karsthotep on Sep 21, 2018, 05:35 pm
OMG that is so freaking cool looking. 

  awesome work.

Thanks! :D

Quote from: galacticprobe on Sep 22, 2018, 04:09 am
...
So one genny, with three different legs? (It does make the genny look even more impressive than it already did.)

Dino.

That’s correct, each generator had three different legs on it. When collecting screenshots of the 3 variants I just used images from different props because I know couldn’t find a single image where all three legs are clearly visible at once (which is probably the cause of the confusion, my bad.)
"Would you like a jelly baby?"

The14thDr

Sep 23, 2018, 10:05 am #8 Last Edit: Sep 23, 2018, 10:06 am by The14thDr
Following a final coat of PVA glue to seal the card, I could begin painting my Chronodyne Generator! I started off by mixing metallic silver and black acrylic paints to get what I thought was an accurate colour for the main body.
generator_build_8.jpg

For the second coat I added some white paint to make the colour less shiny, as the original props resemble more of a dull silver than the metallic paint I used at first.
generator_build_9.jpg
This turned out much better! I gave the generator 2 coats of the lighter, dull silver to ensure an even coverage, before painting the legs and base of the generator black.

Weathering isn't really my forte, but the most effective method I could come up with for recreating the original prop's slightly "scuffed" texture was to water down some black acrylic paint, gently brush small amounts onto the Chronodyne Generator and smear it around with my fingers. Then, I dry-brushed some more of the dull silver paint over the top to make the weathering appear less pronounced.
generator_build_10.jpg
At first I wasn't sure, but after repeating this process a couple of times I don't think the results look too bad. :)

Thanks for looking,
-- 14th
"Would you like a jelly baby?"

russellsuthern

This is a very nice looking build!

It looks really effective.

Great work!


Russell

The14thDr

Sep 23, 2018, 12:50 pm #10 Last Edit: Sep 23, 2018, 02:41 pm by The14thDr
Thanks Russell. :) I love weathering my props, even if it does take me a few attempts to get it right, because it gives things a sense of history (as though they really have been lying around in the TARDIS for a few centuries before being put to good use by the Doctor.) I also find that it provides a really great excuse for any imperfections in a build; "Oh, you mean the small dent in the side, it's supposed to be there, honest!" ;D
"Would you like a jelly baby?"

The14thDr

Sep 27, 2018, 04:08 pm #11 Last Edit: Sep 29, 2018, 06:52 am by The14thDr
A little later than anticipated, I added the finishing details to my Chronodyne Generator.

After attaching the copper wires with glue and leaving them to dry overnight, I painted the glue to resemble the solder that can be seen on the original props. One thing I noticed when double-checking screenshots from the episode is that the placement of the wires is not consistent between each of the props (on different props, the cluster of 4 wires is attached to a different leg) so I chose to base my arrangement on this image here:
generator_reference.png

For the "loom" containing the coiled wire, I took a piece of 15mm wide, 9mm tall plastic tube and cut out a thin notch so that it could be glued flush against the side of the generator. For the wire itself I bought a black telephone cable and cut off a piece roughly 2 inches long. I first glued one end of the wire to the side of the leg, before leaving this to dry for a few hours and fitting the other end into the loom (with a little hot glue for reinforcement.)
generator_build_12.jpg

And that (more or less) concludes my Chronodyne Generator build! Here are some more finished shots, including a comparison with my first replica from way back in 2015! (As you can see, this version is only a slight improvement on the last ;))
generator_build_14.jpg

generator_build_11.jpg
generator_build_13.JPG

With this being one of my all-time favourite props from the show, I'm really proud of how this turned out! Once the lights arrive for the inside of the generator I'll be sure to start a gallery with some better photos. In the meantime, I'd love to here your thoughts.

Regards,
-- 14th
"Would you like a jelly baby?"

karsthotep

Brilliant work 14th,  that really is a big improvement from version 1.0.  Much more detailed.   You nailed the detailing I think,  I'd love to get a 3d printed version of this myself.   Can't say much more than that man.  Looks great.   
I want notes, lists and answers by the time I finish this here Juicy-a-Box! WARNING: I am Thirst-ay! And it is Fruit Punch! And it is Delicious!"

The14thDr

Thanks karsthotep! Yeah, compared to my newer version, the 1.0 is barely recognisable. I didn't fully realise until taking that side-by-side shot, but you can see just how much my skills and attention to detail have improved over the last 3 years.

P.S. If you like, I could send you a copy of the files so that you can have them 3D printed for yourself?
"Would you like a jelly baby?"

Cardinal Hordriss

It's really impressive how you work in the medium of card but it's not visible in the finished product, the various parts look just like the materials used of on the original props.
I speak to you from the final days of Gallifrey. I am the past you have forgotten. You are the future I will not live to see...