A few months ago I made the plunge into 3D modeling when my wife bought me a 3D printer for Christmas. I started off with Sketchup Pro but made the switch to Blender 2.8 a month or so ago. Well, here’s my first 3D animation! It’s based on a character in my graphic story, Tales of Bordoom – the Rise of Sys. Definitely not perfect, but it’s a start. I’m very grateful to the Blender community for all the great learning resources, especially CGBoost.
Here’s my 99.9% completed 1:8 scale 1962 Briggs & Cunningham Jaguar E-Type Le Mans Racing Coupe model car. The base kit for this was the Vintage Revell version. Much of it is scratch-built. The actual car I tried to model here is displayed at the Revs Institute in Naples, FL.
The photos were shot with a Sony A7iii camera using Tamron 28mm and Pentax 50mm lenses. The set is a black card table and a black felt backdrop. Lighting is a Neewer LED light on an overhead boom with a Neewer softbox.
There’s been a lot of new work and re-work on my 1:8 scale 1962 Briggs & Cunningham Jaguar E-Type Racing Coupe since my last blog. Test fitting of the front bonnet revealed fender well panels and the oil circulation port on one of the headcovers were preventing proper closure. It’s always painful when you have to tear apart nicely painted work. I accidentally popped the windshield wiper fluid reservoir loose while wrestling the oil hoses loose. Good thing is, I like the new circulation hoses better (even though I got the port angle backwards.)
The fabrication of a reasonably authentic roll bar was a real pain. What you see here is the fifth version I attempted. Getting the curvature right was the big challenge. I couldn’t get aluminum or brass tubing to bend right, and my 3D printer just couldn’t get the curves right. I ended up combining the 3D printed elbows with styrene tubes and a lot of putty to smooth things out.
Installing the roll bar system meant joining body assemblies in a different way than the stock kit was designed to join. I had to fabricate a semi-flexible flap and hinges to join the rear underside with the front underside so that there was a little give when it comes time to join the top with both sections of undercarriage.
The exhaust system had to be redone as well. The primer I used on the first iteration did not work well with the PLA 3D printed pipes. When I sprayed the silver topcoat, it warped the pipes. Once again though, I like the second versions better.
Next, it was time to paint the racing stripes. I took me awhile to find the right metallic blue color, but I located a great Tamiya match on eBay. Getting the masking straight was very challenging. I didn’t quite match the front bonnet to the body. My wife printed the circles and numbers on her vinyl cutter. I used masking tape to create a carrier mask to apply them.
The underside of the front bonnet needed some aging to look real, so I mixed a little cream-colored acrylic paint with Futura and airbrushed it to get that effect. Adding dirt was handled the same way: brownish acrylic paint mixed with Futura.
Foglight covers were especially challenging to fabricate. I found some bowlish-shaped parts from another model kit and adapted them for that.
Lastly, I modeled a wheel knock off nut in Blender and 3d printed four of them. It’s going to take a lot of work to smooth them out, but I think they will work.
I’m scratch-building an exhaust system to replace the stock piece that, I’m guessing because I have no reference photos, is not accurate for the real race car. Plus, there would be no mufflers to impede that exhaust! The stock kit exhaust chambers are right, so I will integrate them at the end of the new pipes. I have no idea what the real mounting brackets look like, so I made something up. To me, painting exhaust is always fun. I love the challenge of getting an aged, burnt look with a little bit of rust in some joints.
Application of the white color coat has been a challenge. The Dupli-Color paint doesn’t seem to like the primer I used. I really couldn’t get a smooth coat and I got some crazing in some places. So, I wet sanded the problem spots and forged on to get pretty decent coats. You’ll notice that I rigged my small paint booth to better accommodate the 1:8 scale size.
Next comes a clear top coat, which is going to be Futura floor finish.
It’s been awhile since my last update on my 1/8 scale 1962 Briggs & Cunningham Jaguar E-Type Le Mans Racing Coupe model build, so here’s some photos of what I’ve been working on. I’m almost done with the engine compartment, but I have switched to body work, which is very tricky. The stock kit seems to be designed for beginners who are not going to paint it. If, like me, you’re going to paint the body inside and out, you can’t assemble the monocoque following the instructions. I’ve had to plan out the sub-assemblies and how I’m going to join them in the end. I’m painting each of the seven body pieces separately. Thankfully, the real car has body seams showing.
I’m using Rustoleum 2x Ultra Cover Flat Gray Primer for the first time and I’m really pleased with how easy it goes on. The final coat will be Dupli-Color Super White II.
The real car has a British Racing Green interior color. I’m guessing the original Jaguar was that color inside and out before the Briggs & Cunningham livery was applied. I custom mixed my own acrylic craft paint to get close to the right green. It’s applied with an airbrush.
The stock 1:8 scale Revell Jaguar XKE kit does not include the electric fan that cools the radiator. As I said in a previous post, this is for the most part a great kit, but is almost toy-like in a great many details. So, I scratch-built one. I didn’t get the scale right, but what’s new. I couldn’t find any reference photos of a Briggs & Cunningham Jag that showed the fan, so I referred to street car photos.
By request, I’m posting a screenshot of a 1:32 scale Carrera Slot car track layout I have on this site. This layout was created in free software that I found online. This program was incredibly helpful in coming up with an interesting layout that would fit in the 10 ft. by 5 ft. space I had.
I’ve made a correction to the break system: I had left off the dedicated rear master cylinder (I couldn’t see it in the reference photos I had), so I had to scratch-build another one and add it the assembly. Accelerator linkage has also been added, along with what I think is a fuel filter and a break fluid overflow canister. On the other side of the engine compartment I’ve installed the windshield wiper fluid reservoir and pump.
Here’s the installation of the brake master cylinder and steering systems in my 1/8 scale 1962 Briggs & Cunningham Jaguar E-Type Le Mans Racing Coupe model car. The break fluid canisters were in the kit, and it was hard to make the clear plastic look like semi-transparent, aged white plastic. the steering system is scratch-built.
This is the scratch-built competition brake master cylinder assembly I just completed for my 1/8 scale 1962 Briggs & Cunningham Jaguar E-Type Le Mans Racing Coupe model car. Next, I’ll add a little black-washing for grime, then attach break lines. Once the assembly is glued into place, I’ll have to fish the lines through the car and attach them to clips with fittings where the hard lines connect to soft lines that go to the wheels.
That’s just part of the S.O.B. Finding a reasonable facsimile of those hoses coming from the top head cover–to scale, and something that could be easily bent into a particular shape–was especially challenging. Rubber hose material wouldn’t keep its shape. I tried pieces of house wiring, but it was so hard to bend into shape. I had two pieces that I wrestled with for an hour or so. I gave up in frustration and went shopping for something else. I could’t find any soft wire that was the right gauge to mimic the hoses. I finally found some rubber-wrapped flexible wire cable ties at Home Depot. Even then, it was challenging to get the shapes and lengths just right.
The wire clamps, elbows, and rubber hose were difficult, but not terribly so. I know the brass wire is not terribly accurate, but I do like the look of it.
What you see here is where I’m at prior to adding some black-washing to the nooks and crannies for aging and post-race realism.
The next S.O.B. will be the heavy-duty breaking system on the driver’s side. I’ve been able to find pretty decent reference photos, but scratch-building it out of styrene will be tough. Then there is the matter of running the break lines. Wish me luck.