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New, New TardisBuilders!

Mike Verta's s18 TY-J

Started by mverta, Nov 14, 2018, 12:03 am

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<Clutches pearls in mock horror> "You mean, you're not going to make the door unlock and open from the app?"

Joking apart, I hadn't even thought about it until I saw that diagram, but opening the doors with a finger snap would be so cool (whether your other hand was covertly pressing a button in your pocket or not), but perhaps that's not appropriate for a classic series box?

Exciting stuff!


Jan 30, 2019, 07:58 am #76 Last Edit: Jan 30, 2019, 08:05 am by mverta
Ha, yes all the functions, including door lock/unlock can be controlled by the app.  But in fact, I happen to have an RFID chip embedded in an article of jewelry I always wear.  When I contact the inner surface of the phone panel handle with my fingers, the computer will send a signal to check for my RFID chip and then unlock the door - like happens with a lot of cars, now.  But it won't open for anybody else.  But behind the "Yale" lock - which is actually just a faceplate which slides aside - is a TARDIS key slot.  When the key is inserted, that, too, will unlock the door, so others can open it if I give them the key.


I picked up several vintage Yale locks to find one that had the closest possible profile.   I've modeled a few of them exactly in order to machine a dummy version/faceplate which will swing sideways to reveal a TARDIS key slot.  It has a small magnet at the base to snap/center it into position as it returns.  Haven't decided on exactly which one yet, but this is the idea:



This is so very cool. I can't wait to see it working.


Jan 31, 2019, 05:20 am #79 Last Edit: Jan 31, 2019, 05:22 am by mverta
Slapped together a couple of "posts" sections using literally things I found in the shed - some scrap wood, and this sort-of texurizer thing just to break up the flat wood a bit.  But none of that matters; what matters is that I've started "learning" some different blues, out in the world.  I have a few hue targets to hit, but I also know those are relative.  Can't beat just spending some time in the world with paint, in different lighting.  For calibration and consistency, I shoot all my samples with a Macbeth color chart, and the camera set to 6500K white balance so I can track the changing color temp over the course of the day. Ultimately it's looking like the paint job will be done with 6 different hues, and it'll be done with automotive paint, but this is really good for me - for training my eye prior to the actual paint days.




Looking great! This reminds me - which story are you planning to base your TARDIS on? I can't remember if someone has asked you before, or if you'd given an answer before, but I was just curious. Looking at your renders, I'd say it looks closest to "Full Circle", but I don't know whether you plan to replicate that in your physical build or not.

Also, do you plan on replicating notable weathering spots, such as certain spots of lighter paint or dirt or something? Or do you plan to take a bit of liberty? (When I say replicate, I mean matching the shape and color as closely as possible to the original spot.)

I guess the main question I should be asking is "how closely do you plan to replicate the original box?" I know you've replicated the shape of it down to the micrometer, and included all the little nuances included, but in terms of aesthetics, like the previously mentioned paint and weathering, how accurate do you intend to be with that?

Looking forward to seeing more progress on this build. I always love it when you post - I always learn something new about the box.
"An apple a day keeps the... no, never mind."


The panel stuff I've so closely adhered to because they're consistent, on all walls and doors, and can be clearly seen even in medium shots.  The paint damage literally changed from show to show, but in general, I'm following the Full Circle look, which was a wonderful mix of purple-blue, rich blue, green-blue, light purple, and at least 2-3 washes.  I may replicate one or two of my "favorite" scuffs, but in general, I'll be going for a vibe more than an exhaustive replication of a single show's weathering. 


Jan 31, 2019, 11:57 pm #82 Last Edit: Feb 01, 2019, 03:03 am by mverta
Grabbed a sheet of 2447 Matte/Glossy acrylic, which is milky, and compared it to my previous purchase, which was frosted.  Both have been placed over a black background, simulating a dark police box interior.  


Then just held up in ambient front light:


The plans specified "milky" fiberglass, and the milky 2447 definitely confirms this is the correct approach, versus a merely frosted translucent pane.  2447 feels just a touch too opaque to me, but I have not yet sourced a lower-opacity acrylic which is also matte/glossy.  Still not feeling the vinyl in any way; not the right surface quality at all. I wonder how the original "fill" was done...


Perhaps the fill was paint. Back in the 80's I would imagine these signs were made by hand, using letter stencils.


A separate panel behind the signs, rather than on the reverse-side?  My memory recollects a few photos of the TY-J props where we could see the daylight through the negative space of the letters.


Feb 01, 2019, 06:23 pm #85 Last Edit: Feb 01, 2019, 06:25 pm by mverta
Okay, so that was my original plan - it's how I did it for my CG one, too:  A mostly-transparent panel, with the fill/letters on the inside, and then with a white backing piece added behind all that.  I did it that way because of strong photographic evidence (there are shots of the real panel with uniform surface quality across the fill and the letters which strongly indicates inner-face-mounting) and that it clearly looked right in CG.

That's still on the table, but I have to be willing to let things be different in the real world than in the virtual, and so far, none of my mounted-on-the-inside tests have looked right.  That may be a lot of things - nature of material, thickness of material... surface quality of material...  right now I'm procuring some 2406 acrylic as a test - it's more transmissive than 2447; probably more like the "milky" they would have been thinking in 1980. I know what it's supposed to look like; just have to experiment.  It took me 5 weeks to get R2's blue right; test after test after test after test.  Painted, stripped it, painted, restarted.  It's just the process, and actually, for me, the fun - because if we stay on it long enough, we will get it.  And we'll know; and nothing beats that.


A little more on the process of analyzing color.  Click on the link below - YouTube blocked the video because Full Circle can be seen in it.  In slow motion.  For about 5 seconds.



I do enjoy your videos Mike.
You are so far ahead of the game with what you are doing.
Me with my brushes, rollers and Dulux bumbling around in the Workshop and Conservatory at home suddenly feels very quaint in comparison


Ain't none of us above bumbling around with paint, my friend. :) I present this board in my living room:



I just realized I could put this on my Vimeo channel instead - slightly less Orwellian over there: