Thursday, January 21, 2010

WLF1 Ring - Night Racing

Night racing is certainly as much fun as day racing on the Ring. I haven't taken specific night shots in quite some time although there has certainly been a lot of lighting added. These are really just more overview type shots but it gives a good sense of what to expect when lapping the circuit at night. Still a few more power issues for me to address though as some of the lights are not illuminating due to bad cell phone transformers or inadequate power. Both the cell and radio towers have red LEDs on top. Also the crane has a series of lights. Still though just small details that very few will notice. Of course I always notice them!

WLF1 Ring - Main Straight Additions Part 2

For the last part of the main straight I wanted to add team control boxes. Typically these are put on the pit wall, but due to my limited space there I opted for the bleacher side of the track and the walkways provide teams a way to get team members over there. These were more gator board and styrene pieces for the main components. The roof is scored clear lexan. The stools are cut out patterns that I folded up an added supoport tubes then glued them to the buildings. TV screens are graphics mounted to a strip of styrene and are color coded to the adjacent pit boxes. I dressed them up with some numbers and WLF1 Ring logos to add a touch more detail. If you're ever over take a close look at those monitors, you might find an interesting camera shot or two!

WLF1 Ring - Main Straight Additions Part 1

This next batch of modeling has been quite a while in the making. It was always my intent to have the drivers side of the Main Straight complete with overhead walkways, bleachers and Team Control boxes. The bleachers are pretty straightforward and based off the same construction I outlined in an earlier post. To make the overhead walkways and towers I started with gatorboard to make the floors of the towers. I grabbed a large diameter bowl form the kitchen to cut the radiuses into the gator board. Bowls make great circle templates! After that I spaced out the floors using 1/2" gatorboard support posts. Then I measured the outer skin pieces onto sheet styrene. I scored the outer side of the skin to both help the piece naturally curve as well as give some indication of paneling. Corners were dressed up in red painted round dowels and then a few other red styrene parts to add some detail. Staircases were fabricated to let people out on the far side of the pitlane into the bleacher area. From there I moved on to the actually crosswalks. These started as a 1/2" piece of gator board for the floor, and the 1/4" gator sides. I capped the unfinished edges of gator with wood planks and painted the structures white. Then I added corrugated silver flooring material and black crochet mat for the railing fences. Later I added Christmas LED lights to the underside to help illuminate the area around the walkways. I would always suggest using LEDs when available. You are almost guaranteed they will never burn out. So the pit lane is looking much more complete from all vantage points. A few figures were painted up and glued down to add to the ambiance.

WLF1 Ring - Midfield

I did some more tree and shrubbery work in the midfield area of the Ring. Primarily adjacent to the Senna Esses. I spent a little more time on the trees because I wanted a fuller look to break up the circuit from front to back. It in no way inhibits the drivers view and actually provides a cool shot of the cars screaming through the trees. I used the same woody weeds from my back yard, but this time I bought some multi colored green and brown yarn and pulled it apart to make it all hairy. Then I wrapped the trunks up with the yarn and doused with hairspray and covered in modeling flax of different colors. Time consuming for sure but worth the effort.

WLF1 Ring - Building Under Construction

I had this idea of having a building under construction back in the industrialized area of my circuit. The main reasoning was I wanted to build a Tower Crane to sit atop it! The tower for the crane stared out as two styrene pre-fab trusses. I then cut additional struts to make a box truss. The top truss that the hook slides along was done in the same fashion but in a triangular shape. The cab was made from sheet styrene and I even put a little figure in there. The crane has 3 red LED lights in it, one on top, one at the tip and one inside the cab. I still need to run a power supply to it, but it is all wired and ready to go. The building is a custom made piece of aluminum that I dressed up with some rough structure to make it look like it is being built. I thought it would be cool to have a beam being hoisted and as a tribute to the hazard filled building days of the 1930's, I put a guy up there checking out the track, one hell of a view I am sure! I dressed up the supporting deck with a plant laden sidewalk and curbing. Also you can see the final curved bleachers from the previous post. I need to do a little more transition work back there but its one of those places that very few people will actually notice. That’s where the camera shots really add some fun to track building. You can place that camera in so many interesting spots your eyes could never go. I think I have years of interesting shots I can take of White Lake F1 Ring!

WLF1 Ring- Bleachers

Greetings from the Ring! It's hard to believe its been six months since my last post. I've certainly done some additions over the last several months so I am going to bombard the site with several new posts to accompany all the pictures.
I'll start with this little bleacher set I made. These pictures show the set in various states of progress. The finished sets you'll see in a post or two from now. I tried to document my construction with photos but I tend to work more and take pictures less. I thought this would be a good one to show though because I think most tracks can certainly use some bleachers here and there and they are very easy to make. I used Pine and Balsa wood for the main pieces and these shots show the table I work on for everything. Notice that it is gridded, this is extremely useful to make sure you are fabricating with good right angles, parallels, perpendiculars and increments. I cut the pieces in assembly line fashion, cutting all of one length at a time, etc. This makes a project like the 4 sets of bleachers I produced move along much more quickly. The ruler was taped down to the table and the bleacher risers were glued together right along the edge of it to make sure spacing was good. You need four risers to make a bleacher set of 3 spans. The spans were cut from balsa wood, and in the instance of this set of bleachers I made it curve slightly by cutting the middle span at an angle. I wanted this one to curve because it was going to sit on the outside of a curve in the back corner of my layout. After it was all dried I painted it and then fabricated a simple awning structure from more pine and a corrugated paper. You'll see the finished results in the next post!