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New, New TardisBuilders!

Camping Tardis

Started by Shwalamazula, Mar 23, 2019, 10:11 pm

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Apr 23, 2019, 05:02 pm #30 Last Edit: Apr 25, 2019, 03:48 am by shwalamazula
This roof is making me very grumpy. After the last bit of grief over my platform not being properly sunk the way I wanted it, I figured out a correction for the issue that ended up being wrong.

I went to the hardware store and got a 3/4" router bit. The idea here is to take the router along the inner perimeter of the box and make a 1/4" deep channel for the second tier to sit on. We had to rig up a bunch o clamps and wood to get a good base for the router to sit on and then we routed the groove. This looked great and gave me my 1/4" channel.


What I failed to do before was take the measurements for the second tier to see where it actually sits. The second tier actually sits on the inner-perimeter of the platform (not the inner-perimeter of the box). So, all of that earlier routing was for nothing (so much cursing here). I now know that I am going to have to route the inner bit to give my recess to stabilize the next tier.

Instead of working on that, I decided to build up the second tier. I've got real good at making boxes, so this went together quickly. The inner platform for the second tier is only 30" long, so I decided to use one of the 1x8s for the wood. A single 1x8 will give me all 4 pieces.

Once the pieces were cut to width and length, I put the pocket holes in them and laid them inside the second tier for a dry fit. Before I attach these to the box, I am going to route the boards, so that I do not have to make any rigs for the routing. This will also allow me to leave the outer portion of the platform flush with the box while only having the channel to hold the box in place.


Once all of that fun with the roof pieces was concluded, I wanted to do something else. Lucky for me, this build is only 70% complete and there are tons of things to do. I decided to play with the lantern. I ended up going with the Westinghouse lantern for $35 USD.


The lantern came apart fairly easily. I can frost the glass if I want or make other mods to it easily. I took the lantern off the wall base and removed the wires for the light socket. I left the socket in because it was integrated with the big bolt that holds all the top bits together. I will have to do some cutting, filling, and grinding to get everything nice and smooth. JB Weld should do the trick nicely.


The roof is getting better. I am not sure if I want to re-fab the roof base or not. I worked today on routing the inner portion of the platform. I tried a few ways to get a straight line across the boards while allowing the router to travel neatly along the parimiter. This worked okay.


I really really do not like the way that this turned out. The groove is not the same depth all the way around, the groove isn't a consistant width, and it just looks like poo. Thankfully, unless someone is 9 feet tall, they will never see it. The problem is that I know it is there. That and it is going to be a massive water ingress point. I might just end up using this base frame for my signs and just rebuild the whole thing. I will leave images here though to make sure I document this mess.


After sulking a bit, I moved on to the second tier. I made sure that I routed the inner platform before assembly. The routing was simple and the assembly went quicker than the last one. I assembeld it on its side so that I could be sure that the pieces were flush. I also made sure to mark up all of the corners so that I knew which ones went together the best


This turned out much nicer than I expected. All the pieces came together nice and tight and though I overshot on a couple cuts, the inner channel turned out much better than the last one. I routed these with a routing table this time (last time was with a hand router). The difficulty with the routing table is that you cant see where you are cutting if you are not cutting the whole length of the wood. I made marks for the inner cuts but overshot a couple times. I can clean those up with the sander, or just leave them, I guess.



This is really coming together well! I saved these plans a while back and done nothing with them to date. I like the routered corners all over. It gives it a really finished look. Can't wait to see what you do with the paint job and sign boxes.


When looking at the WWMM video and the plans, the box just looked really strange to me. When looking at reference pictures the routing really stood out as a big difference. I do like the routing much better than the hard-line look. I wish I had thought a little more further ahead when routing parts like the corner posts, but I will adapt with a drainage solution.

I am looking to do LED-lit signs and create some way to hang them with electrical passthroughs that can be easily connected and disconnected.

Since I am most likely going to re-do that base of the roof, I may just cut out slots in the middle of the base to let light pass from the main box to the signs. This would simplify the whole build. Instead of needing 6 light drivers (Upper Lamp, Inside Light, 4x Sign Lights), I would only need 2 drivers (Upper Lamp, Inside Light). I would just need to have a solution for hanging the signs and keep the back open and waterproof.


May 16, 2019, 04:29 am #34 Last Edit: May 16, 2019, 04:57 am by shwalamazula
I was really bummed that work kept getting in the way of the important things in my life. Lucky for me, the last 3 weeks weren't totally useless. I was able to get hinges for my little door and my lock.

The hinges are neat and have a 3/4" bent bit for securing it to the main wood. I was gonna say the hinge had a hinge but that really didn't make sense.


The lock looks a bit overkill. I really just wanted a little lock with the face but I couldn't find anything that didn't have a honking security bolt attached to it. I am hoping it fits on my door. If need be, I can add a chunk of wood to the back side for it to attach, but I would rather not, if I can avoid it.


Today I got to work on the little box for the lantern. I was not sure what size to make the base. So I just started putting the lantern on a bunch of pieces of scrap wood. The scrap from the 1x8 pieces turned out perfect. The base of the lantern is 6" in diameter and the 1x8 is 7.5" wide. So, I was able to square that up and it fit great.


I used left over 1x6 material to make the base of the box. I thought it was strange looking at builds here with all the damn clamps on the light box. I thought people just found it as an amusing use for all the crazy clamps they acquired for the build. I was sooooooo wrong. These darn pieces do not want to maintain a box shape. I had to pump extra wood glue into all of the seams and clamp the tar out of the box to get it to hold its shape. I am going to have to sand it flat when the clamps come off tomorrow.


While the little box cured, I started getting my measurements together for the top o the roof. I used the roof calculator in the http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?board=80.0 to get the dimensions for the plywood I would need for the panels. The numbers aren't great but they give me my 15° pitch on the roof.


Before wrapping up the night, I went thru my scrap 1x4 pieces and grabbed the ugliest ones (ones with sap, gouges, knots, and warpage). These pieces are going to be used for the inner support braces for the roof. They don't need to be pretty, just structural. We are going to send them thru the planer to make them nice and flat. I learned that the speed square does angles too. A couple quick measurements and I have my 15° angle for the roof. We don't have a miter saw, so cutting the angles is going to be a bit of a pain in the butt.



Jun 11, 2019, 03:40 am #35 Last Edit: Jun 11, 2019, 03:52 am by shwalamazula
It's been 3 weeks since I have got back to this project. I don' t understand why work doesn't understand my priorities.

Anyhoozer, I got started on roof panels today. I started with a piece of plywood. It was suggested that I use .5" for durability. Neat thing, my local hardware store didn't have .5" plywood; they did have 9/16" though ...

Using the calculated dimensions from the roof calculator, I made a series of straight lines to cut the plywood into more manageable pieces. I made the sections 14" just to get a rough cut. We then used the table saw to bring them to their proper 13.5" with a stop block.




Once I got the height of the pieces down, I simply laid them on the frame and marked their corners. With the corners marked, I just had to connect the marks and cut the pieces.



We found that it was easiest to cut the wood with a circular saw. We elevated a metal straight edge and then made sure the cut line was parallel to the straight edge and far enough away to accommodate the guard around the blade. In our case it was 5". Once it was straight, we simply ran the circular saw along the straightedge to get our cuts.

The panels were a bit iffy. It looks like the panels needed to be cut larger and then brought down in size. I really have little desire to do that, so I am going to first try to work with what I have got. I do have a can of Bondo Wood Filler that is sandable, paintable, stainable, and doesn't shrink. I will simply do my best with the gaps and fill them with Bondo. I'll know about the seams but it is highly unlikely anyone else will notice.

We did run into an issue with one of the panels. We decided to make the panel a quarter inch wider to accommodate for the shorter panels next to it. When we ran our first cut, we took a quarter inch off the wrong side. We thought the panel was ruined but then remembered we cut off half-inch strips when we made the final cuts for the panel height. I lined one of the scraps against the panel and when we measured, it was right were we wanted it to be. So, I glued the pieces together and let them set a half hour (already learned this glue is damn near permananet after 30 minutes).



While I waited for that to dry, I started on my little frame for my little door. I gave the hardware a test fit and noticed it was far too bulky. I was going to just sand down the frame but then it was suggested that I just use chisels to knock out the bits where the hinges would sit. So that is what I did.


Once the grooves were cut out, I did another test fit and everything was snug. I put a quarter-inch rounding bit on the router and ran the inside and outside of the door. Then I used the orbital to clean up the frame. Finally, I attached the hardware to the main frame. I am really happy with the fit of this door. There is just enough friction to hold it in place.


I am not sure if I will find the gap annoying. If I do, I will simply attach a small back panel around the frame to block any light from the inside of the TARDIS.



By now, my roof panel was dry enough to mess with. We used a little hack saw to lop off the extra length of the strips and went to dry-fit the panels to the roof. There are sizable gaps between the panels. It looks like the flat parts of of the roof supports that connect to the box are pushing up the panels. If I scoot the panels down so that they are sitting right on the braces, I have a much cleaner fit. I am not sure if this construction method is supposed to have massive gaps between the roof panels and the internal supports (if http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?action=profile;u=6410 or http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?action=profile;u=2 could impart some knowledge, that would help a ton). I used a similar method as http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?action=profile;u=6410 's http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?topic=7328 but only had the images posted to go by (I saw they were based on a build by http://tardisbuilders.com/index.php?action=profile;u=2, but I couldn't find the referenced build pages). I hope I didn't trash the form too much. I am aware that the .5" plywood will add some more gap to the roof. I may be able to correct this with the router.



Davros Skaro

Just a thought! I notice that the roof rails that support the center are at an angle to the side rails. This will stop the ply panels from sitting flush, so ways of fixing this is to 1. Cut the side rails at an angle to match the center beams, 2. cut the bottom edge of the ply to match the angle of the rails. This would then allow the ply to sit flat on the beams.

Hope this isn't too confusing & helps with your project which is looking good btw.



That's what I thought was happening. I can take a router to the panels to try to bring the angle down. I have a feeling I'll need to shave down the corners attached to the box. I certainly can't use a router on those. Any suggestions on how to cut those down?

Davros Skaro

You could try a circular saw with the blade set at the correct angle & use a guide on the side of the timber to cut sides so the ply will fit flat. You will need to be careful & use a fine toothed blade to get a neat cut.

I don't know how you'd go, just a thought. Try on a piece of scrap first to see if it will work.



Ended up taking an orbital sander with 80 grit to take out most of the material, then finished off the rest with chisels. It'll be in my post tomorrow. Roof's gonna need a lot of wood filler...


I don't know that there's a right angle on my TARDIS--or that any 2 "matching" parts are the same size.  Of course mine isn't designed to be taken apart and transported, thankfully. 
"My dear Litefoot, I've got a lantern and a pair of waders, and possibly the most fearsome piece of hand artillery in all England. What could possibly go wrong?"
-The Doctor.


Jun 13, 2019, 05:31 pm #41 Last Edit: Jun 13, 2019, 06:48 pm by shwalamazula
I finally got my roof together!

I started with the frame and laid the panels on it to see where the panels were interfering with supports connected to the lamp box.

The fitting issue I had was mainly because the supports connecting to the box were up too high and their width caused interference that prevented the panels from laying on the frame. I also found that there was a gap between the main frame and the panels (no matter what I do). This is because I did not elevate the angled framing to accommodate for the 3/4" flat bit of the main frame. I don't think this will impact the build much.



To correct the interference with the supports, I used 80-grit sandpaper on the orbital sander to take as much material out as possible with minimum effort. Once I got the bulk work out of the way, I used chisels to take out the rest of the support. I put the panels on and kept taking out material until I was happy with how high the panels sat and how they interfaced with each other.




Once the panels were in their proper location, there was no way to make the panels cover the outer frame at the base without gaps between panels. We grabbed plywood scraps and used them as gap-filler for the panels. I will later use wood filler to clean up all of the gaps and then we will sand it all pretty.


I put glue down for my first panel and used the brad nailer to tack it in place. I then went around the roof, gluing and tacking the other panels and the filler strips into place (the filler strips only got glued).


I was really excited and still had some time to spare, so I started to modify the lantern.


The lantern had an annoying piece sticking out of it that was made to connect to the wall-mount (the lantern is an electrical lantern that is supposed to be mounted to the side of a building). I grabbed a hacksaw and cut off that connector bit.


Finally, I cut off the ring at the top of the lantern. I will grab a Dremel or some other tool to clean up the cut parts. I am not sure if I want to glue something to cover that open hole I created cutting off that connector piece so that it matches up with the rest of the lantern.


It is looking pretty neat. Next step will be:

1.   Use wood-filler to fill in the roof-panel gaps
2.   Sand down all of the surfaces to make sure all gaps have been disappeared
3.   Figure out how to cut off the excess material where the base of the roof panels meet the main frame



Davros Skaro

There is a router bit that you can use for this, it has a bearing race on the end of it & it runs across the face of your main frame & will trim of the roof excess.
Something like this.

Hope this helps.



I was very excited to see this. Then I realized they don't make a 4.5" flush-trim bit and that made me sad (cause you need a flat surface to run the router). Then I found out that you can get a tilt base for a router and adjust it for the roof pitch and run it along the roof. I was, again, very excited.

Davros Skaro

Quote from: shwalamazula on Jun 14, 2019, 03:32 am
I was very excited to see this. Then I realized they don't make a 4.5" flush-trim bit and that made me sad (cause you need a flat surface to run the router). Then I found out that you can get a tilt base for a router and adjust it for the roof pitch and run it along the roof. I was, again, very excited.

Any size flush bit would do, this is just a pic I pulled from the net. The size of the bit doesn't matter. I hope this works out well for you, looking great so far.  :D