What if

GROUP BUILDS => 2019 One Week Build => Topic started by: Weaver on June 06, 2019, 04:58:54 am

Title: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Weaver on June 06, 2019, 04:58:54 am
Okay, I've convinced myself that I can do this and I've got a solid-enough plan.  :rolleyes:

I'm going to try to build an S&M Stalwart Mk.2 into a 'moon buggy' as used in a sci-fi TV series. It will make no attempt to be actually useable (that's what non-matching interior sets are for... :wacko:), just to look cool whie being quick'n'dirty to produce. To this end, it will have a simple flat panel over the load bed, with the upper half of a fibreglass Saladin prop stuck on top of that and suitably disguised.

The working idea for the TV series is that it's a Gerry Anderson re-boot/homage in the mid 2000's, directed by Joss Whedon after the cancellation of Firefly. The project starts out as Space 1999 series III, but is changed in development to merge aspects of Space 1999 and UFO with a more credible backstory and better attention to science than either of them. This has the advantage that surplus Stollys were definitely available by then (one briefly appeared in the Firefly pilot).
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: kerick on June 06, 2019, 06:29:55 am
Sounds interesting!
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 07, 2019, 03:57:32 am
Aaaand within 24 hours, Events are already conspiring to steal my time: just lost an evening and a morning... :banghead:

Not wanting to be left out, my internet connection's just started playing up too... :rolleyes:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 07, 2019, 04:28:21 pm
And we're off!

The obligatory starting point picture. The Stolly didn't have a box: Mel was selling them in bags with no instructions or decals at a show earlier this year (the instructions in the pic came from a full one that I bought a few years ago).

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48021529541_e49734b36d_c.jpg)
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 08, 2019, 07:12:00 am
Christ, this thing is a PITA. There's NO location points, even where it would be easy to provide them, the backs of the wheels don't fit in the fronts and EVERY suspension unit needs so much remodelling that it's almost a completely different shape when you've finished. The problem with the latter is that they fall across the mould split line, so EVERY surface that needs to be an angled flat is actually mildly conical.... :banghead: :banghead: :banghead:

I thought I'd have the basic vehicle all together by now, but in fact, I've only just started glueing things together... :o
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 08, 2019, 08:21:57 am
Notes for anyone building one of these things.
(I'll keep updating this post as I find more stuff)

1. You need to glue the belly pan (B11) to the load bed (B6) BEFORE trying to fit the suspension units (A5 A9 A18 A19), because the front ones (A5) partly fit to the bottom of the cabin floor bulge (which is part of B6) whereas the rest of them fit to B11. Without the floor plate, you don't have a reference for trimming the A5s.

2. When cutting the transmission lines (B5 & B7) off the sprues, be careful not to cut away parts of the suspension hangers that have sprue gates on them, i.e. the dividing line between part and gate is not obvious. If you cut too much of the part away, then you don't have anything to fit the suspension units to.

3. Before fitting the suspension units you have to also file all their mating surfaces flat, cut the inboard end of the drive shaft off to get it to fit above the suspension hanger, and file the inboard end of the wishbone to a cylindrical shape to get it to mate with the suspension hanger.

4. Test-fit the inner wheels (A6) onto both the outer wheels (A8) and the relevant suspension unit BEFORE fitting the latter to the body. EVERYTHING needs sanding, filing and drilling to fit.

5. Leave the right hand side load bed panel (B1) off until AFTER you've fitted the exhaust pipe (A1) to the body. It's physically impossible to get the pipe in once the right-rear 'box pillar' (in which the silencer lives) is closed up. If you do close it up first, then your options are a) saw the pipe in half and fit the silercer from the top and the pipe from the bottom, or b) cut/drill the bottom of the box pillar out to make a bigger hole (not sure if this'll work, but it seems right).

6. The exhaust pipe as designed fouls the rear right hand wheel. I've fixed this by enlarging the hole in the load bed so that it can be tucked in more tightly and moved further back. Also, check reference photos for how it fits around the chassis shape. I'll post up a still from a YT video that shows this tomorrow.

7. The 'box pillars' at the rear corners of the load bed are formed from the load bed panels (B10 & B12), the tailgate (B9), the rear bulkhead (B8) and two inner wall pieces (B1 & B3). The corners are mitred, and they just don't fit. if you want a real-world accurate model, check a lot of references, do a lot of test-fitting, and trim accordingly. The 'lid' of the left hand pillar is formed integrally with B3, but it's awful: thick, misshapen and not even flat. Again, for an accurate model, I'd suggest cutting it off and making a new, separate lid. Since my model is dressed up for a TV show, I can, luckily, just cover all this with vis-mods.

(The design of the whole rear corner is just wrong IMHO. I'd have made the inside faces of the box pillar integral with B8, which would positively locate it at 90 deg to the base, then make the other three sides as separate L-section pieces instead of integral to the sides and rear. That way, the corner could be neat and you could leave the left-hand one off until the exhaust was installed.)
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Old Wombat on June 08, 2019, 08:25:07 am
The joys of old 1/76 kits! ;D
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 08, 2019, 08:31:53 am
Old be damned - this only came out a few years ago! This is the 'modern' S&M Models kit.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: loupgarou on June 08, 2019, 09:30:47 am
Old be damned - this only came out a few years ago! This is the 'modern' S&M Models kit.

Well,whatcould youexpect from Sado & Maso Model?  :wacko:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: PR19_Kit on June 08, 2019, 09:41:44 am
I'll make a note of all that H, thanks so much.  :thumbsup:

I've replaced the Stolly that I bought at last year's Telford (the one that got stolen off the stand  :banghead:) and I want to make it into a 'tow trick' for my Monterey flying boat. 

Amazingly I found that the RAF really did have a few of them!
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 08, 2019, 09:23:54 pm
Updated the build notes post... :rolleyes:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: zenrat on June 09, 2019, 03:55:10 am
Thanks H.  I now won't be picking up one of these.

Best of luck with the rest of the build.  Nil illegitimi carborundum.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: PR19_Kit on June 09, 2019, 03:59:16 am
I hope the ratbag who stole my first one is having similar problems with it................   :wacko:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 09, 2019, 05:10:50 am
Pictures! Bear in mind that these are AFTER a fair bit of fettling. Having said that, I was watching the clock, so if you've got more time and patience to spare you could almost certainly do better than this.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48029729387_497a53b7ee_c.jpg)

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48029671323_071f6c2077_c.jpg)

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48029666163_549d85f211_c.jpg)

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48029624336_0183717076_c.jpg)

The real exhaust pic is grabbed from a Youtube video, which is why the quality's so poor. I couldn't find a still photo of this area on the web.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 09, 2019, 05:20:21 am
Thanks H.  I now won't be picking up one of these.

Best of luck with the rest of the build.  Nil illegitimi carborundum.

Well your other option is the Ace 1/72nd scale kit, which looks, from sprue shots, to be a much more sophisticated offering (almost verging on the over-engineered), with nice things like separate roof hatches and windows. Having said that Ace have a reputation all their own, so it might be a the difference between hitting your finger with a hammer and dropping a heavy thing on your digit...
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: PR19_Kit on June 09, 2019, 07:18:30 am
Cracking pics H, many thanks.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 10, 2019, 12:48:26 am
Internal bracing for the load bed so that the cosmetic deck above it doesn't sag:

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48035253448_c2aa89448f_c.jpg)

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48035207751_4ae51e16cf_c.jpg)
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: PR19_Kit on June 10, 2019, 07:26:29 am
Is the top deck that weak?
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 10, 2019, 04:19:44 pm
Is the top deck that weak?

Probably not, but I've had big, edge-supported sheets of Evergreen sag in the middle before, especially where glue fumes are involved.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 11, 2019, 05:48:57 pm
Couple of in-progress pics (on a blue background no less - oooh, what a webel...)

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48046529466_eef00eb0c2_c.jpg)

The black bits on the sprue are the all-clear front and sides of the cab, now masked, sprayed black on the outside, and painted with Tamiya Smoke on the inside.

Since the whole point is to obscure the inside of the cab as much as possible (in order to mask the fact that there arn't two space-suited actors sitting in it, since a Stolly drives from the centre), the windows are tinted and the interior is all-black. I snapped the OE steering whell trying to get it off the sprue, so it now sportes a JB Landrover one.

Most of the body mods are Evergreen. The big lump on top is, of course the top half of an Airfix/JB Saracen, with it's radiator grill mounted upside down on the front of it and it's tropical engine intakes to either side. The ring around the turret ring is the Saracen's rear skate-ring, put there to make a bigger base for the (googly-eye) astrodome.

The white things in front are headlight/floodlights for the top of the cab roof, made from Hasegawa Hind-D side-window moldings and Evergreen. They aren't finished yet.


(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48046530636_d1b42d12c4_c.jpg)

The rear door is the end cap from the fuel tank of the Matador bowser in the Airfix refuelling vehicles set.

The panel on top of the hull is part of the engine cover from an Airfix 1/32nd De Dietrich car.

The silver panel on the side of the Saracen body is the entrance platform from a Revell 1/100th Apollo Lunar Module, which is also donating it's landing feet as wheel covers for the back four wheels (the front wheels need to be uncovered since the driver has to step on them to get in), and one of it's radar aerials.


Unfortunately, I won't get much done on this for the next couple of days since I have to run family errands both mornings, but I still think I can finish it.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Old Wombat on June 11, 2019, 08:27:29 pm
A true bitzenpiesez build! :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: PR19_Kit on June 12, 2019, 04:37:06 am
That's looking pretty darned impressive already H.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: NARSES2 on June 12, 2019, 06:06:58 am
That's looking pretty darned impressive already H.  :thumbsup:

It certainly is
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 13, 2019, 06:45:05 pm
Cheers folks. :thumbsup:

Some paint has now been applied.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Cobra on June 13, 2019, 10:48:28 pm
this is Looking Great :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup: starting to see a Little Gerry Anderson Flavor with this! Can't Wait until it's Done! Keep up the Superb Work :cheers: :cheers: :cheers: :cheers: Dan
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Mossie on June 14, 2019, 01:29:42 am
Tis nice. :thumbsup:  I'll be watching for ideas for my Airfix Coyote, I've had ideas but can't settle on how to go about it.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 14, 2019, 04:15:02 am
More paint has been applied. Unfortunately, it turns out that there are gaps doen the front corners of the cab, that I didn't see before because it was all painted black. A little filler will be needed, but I think it's fixable.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: PR19_Kit on June 14, 2019, 05:01:16 am
Yes, seeing build faults on black models is a real pain. :(
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 14, 2019, 07:39:17 pm
Some of the paint has orange-peeled, but I think I've sanded down the worst of it. I forgot to warm the can up..... :banghead: :banghead: :banghead:

Filler in and drying.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Moon Buggy TV Prop
Post by: Weaver on June 15, 2019, 09:07:52 pm
Masking tape off the windows, and, with a little clean-up, they're okay (phew).

Small details painted in contrasting colours.

Waterslide decals on.

Pin wash on without spoiling the white (phew x 2).

Astrodome on. (Can't have a sci-fi lunar rover without a dome 'cos... <reasons>).

Floodlights painted.



Jobs for tomorrow:

Self-adhesive decals on.

Fit lights.

Fit wheels.

Photographs.

Backstory.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 lunar rover
Post by: Weaver on June 16, 2019, 10:32:24 am
(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48073968208_663bbf0752_b.jpg)

In the late 1990's a group of fans, financiers and film people started trying to put together a reboot of the 1970s TV show Space 1999, with the encouragement, if not direct involvement, of Gerry Anderson's company. Intially, like most such projects, it got nowhere, but in the early 2000's the team caught a couple of breaks. Firstly, the immensely successful reboot of Battlestar Galactica created an appetite amongst TV studios for rebooting old franchises. Secondly, Joss Whedon's sci-fi series Firefly got cancelled after one season, amidst howls of protest, due to network politics. This left Whedon with an 'unscratched itch' to do more sci-fi, and when one of the team had the idea of approaching him, he was more than willing to get involved.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48073212822_ebcf2eb427_c.jpg)

Whedon liked some things about Space 1999 but disliked others. The visual style and near-future setting appealed to him, indeed he became quite obsessive about making it more realistic, but he dislike the 'wandering moon' plot, feeling that modern audiences just wouldn't buy it (they'd barely bought it in the 1970s). The show thus began to evolve away from a straight reboot into more of an homage to the original's style, but with a plot that merged elements of both Space 1999 and UFO, with mankind established throughout the inner solar system, but now faced with mysterious and apparently hostile invaders. Gerry Anderson got re-involved when it appeared that the series might actually stand a chance of getting made.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48073214327_d4a180647a_c.jpg)

Gerry Anderson's Space 2099 entered production in 2007 and began to air 14 months later. Most of the spacecraft and settings were provided by CGI, partial exterior and full interior sets, but one type that required at least one full-size vehicle was Moonbase Alpha's   lunar rover. Whedon had used an Alvis Stalwart (briefly) in the Firefly pilot episode and, impressed with the vehicle's chunky sci-fi looks, immediately sought out another one. Budgets were tight and timescales short, so the company tasked with converting the vehicle looked for creative ways to cut corners. They'd previously been involved in the 1995 Judge Dredd movie, which had used a couple of Alvis Saracen APCs as futuristic vehicles. The company had made several full-size fibreglass replicas of these to fill out a scene that was then cut from the script, and they still had a couple lying around. The upper body of one of these was, therefore, trimmed a bit and then fitted on top of a flat steel plate that was fitted across the stop of the Stalwart's load bed. Several other mouldings from the Saracen, as well as many others, were then applied to disguise and dress it up.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48073110321_af75f6e6f6_c.jpg)

Although the vehicle looked the part, using it for filming presented several challenges. To start with it not only had no interior, but it wasn't even possible to step into it, so shots of astronauts boarding or disembarking from the rover had to be carefully edited, using exterior shots only from the left, where the door blocked the view of the obstructed interior, together with interior shots of the open doorway taken from within the interior set against a greenscreen. The interior set, in time-honoured Space 1999 tradition, did not, in any way, fit inside the exterior of the Stalwart, with much more space that would actually have been possible. The interior set design was also done by a different team from the vehicle conversion, who gave the control cabin two seats side-by-side with a doorway in between them, apparently in ignorance of the Stalwart's central driving position. This was dealt with on-set by adding a dark tint to the vehicle's cab windows and having the driver wear an all-over black leotard and hood to make him 'vanish' as much as possible.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48073112096_b86121df50_c.jpg)

Another problem was the exhaust, which left prominent clouds of smoke hanging in the air, which was highly problematic for a supposedly electric vehicle operating in a vacuum. Sometimes these were edited out in post-production using CGI, and sometimes the driver would cut the engine and coast onto the set! Cosmetic wheel covers originally fitted to all six wheels had to be removed from the forward pair since it was essential to step on the hubs in order to board the vehicle, whose only real access was through the cab roof hatches.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48073160263_b1ea6f6a63_c.jpg)

Space 2099 ran for three seasons, but was then cancelled due to a loss of quality and viewership in the final season. This was mostly due to Joss Whedon stepping back from running the show in order to concentrate on film projects, cast and crew both suggesting that the replacements brought in to replace him lacked the same 'feel' for the show, and for a good script, that he'd displayed. Somewhat inevitably, the show has acquired 'cult status' and has a loyal fan following, who organise various conventions at which the cast appear to speak and sign autographs. One of those fans now owns the lunar rover, and since, with a few minor modifications, it's as driveable on the road as any Stalwart (that is to say, it's doable, but difficult) it now appears at fan events all over the Western half of the USA.


(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/48073221232_bc979d8d9c_c.jpg)
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Weaver on June 16, 2019, 10:49:51 am
Models that contributed parts to this build:

S&M 1/76th Alvis Stalwart Mk.II
Airfix/JB 1/76th Alvis Saracen
Revell 1/100th Apollo Lunar Lander
Airfix 1/72nd Shorts Skyvan
Airfix 1/32nd De Dietrich car
Airfix 1/76th Matador fuel bowser
Revellobox 1/76th T-34 tank
Airfix 1/76th Shop and Flat
Hasegawa 1/72nd Hind E
Craft store googly eye
Evergreen. Lots of Evergreen...
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: JayBee on June 16, 2019, 11:52:34 am
FANTASTIC, that is all that needs to be said!
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: PR19_Kit on June 16, 2019, 12:11:54 pm
To quote a Guiness advert of many years ago 'I said I think it's BLOODY MARVELLOUS!'  :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

The back story is a work of genius and worthy of a Whiffie nomination in its own right!  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Old Wombat on June 16, 2019, 06:46:23 pm
To quote a Guiness advert of many years ago 'I said I think it's BLOODY MARVELLOUS!'  :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

The back story is a work of genius and worthy of a Whiffie nomination in its own right!  :thumbsup:

Agreed! :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Weaver on June 16, 2019, 08:01:32 pm
Cheers Folks! :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Ed S on June 16, 2019, 08:14:19 pm
Looks good!
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Cobra on June 16, 2019, 09:35:11 pm
Superb Job :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:has that Gerry Anderson Flavor to it along with a bit of NASA Thrown in. You did a Top Notch,Worthy of a Whiffie Job! Dan
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Mossie on June 17, 2019, 02:12:16 am
Like it. :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: zenrat on June 17, 2019, 04:27:20 am
Well done H.  Good job.
 :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: NARSES2 on June 17, 2019, 06:24:02 am
That is just brilliant  :bow:

Mind you I can't work out if it's a mobile de-pressurisation chamber or the LCC (Lunar County Council) rubbish truck ?  ;)

Well done H
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Rheged on June 17, 2019, 12:06:12 pm
This build, and attached backstory, are absolutely magnificent.   This is indeed whiffery at its best.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Weaver on June 17, 2019, 05:03:22 pm
Wow - thanks again guys, it's much appreciated.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: loupgarou on June 17, 2019, 11:43:08 pm
Very neat (and unusual) idea and build.
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Weaver on June 24, 2019, 06:53:20 pm
The seller of the Moonbase Alpha stickers is back on Ebay. They're called Eagle_Arts and this is their shop:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/eagle_arts/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_ipg=&_from=
Title: Re: Alvis Stalwart Space 2099 Lunar Rover - FINISHED!
Post by: Captain Canada on June 25, 2019, 05:40:31 am
Perfect ! That tunred out was cooler than I had imagined. Great stuff. Now I want one !

 :thumbsup: :wub: