Author Topic: Modelling Mars  (Read 122542 times)

Offline Ronpur50

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Modelling Mars
« on: 09/25/2014 04:24 PM »
I am starting a new series of projects that will be based on proposed Mars vessels.  I will base the models from NASA designs and alternate history books. 

First up will be from Stephen Baxter's book, "Voyage".  I plan on making the Ares and Saturn VB. And perhaps a Moonlab Space Station.
 But first up is the ill-fated Apollo-N.  I used a Airfix Saturn S-IVb stage and a NERVA engine from a Pilgrim Space Observer model.  I used the BPC as the command module, and drilled out windows.  I did not add a docking port, since the mission did not plan on docking with any thing.  I like the block 1-ish appearance that it ended up with, and added the decals accordingly. 
  The only real modification to the S-IVb stage was the removal of the outer attach points on the thrust structure, and gluing the structure a tiny bit further into the stage so it could sit on a Saturn V for launch.

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #1 on: 09/25/2014 10:58 PM »
I have been trying to get a count on what parts I need for Ares and if I can make one model that is able to be configured into the various mission modes.  So, I reworked a Saturn V drawing to try to get a handle on it.  I have 3 extra S-IVb stages, a complete unassembled Saturn V, and two extra S-II stages.  So, I need to figure out how to connect them and disconnect them.

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #2 on: 09/25/2014 11:02 PM »
For the Saturn VB, I reworked a drawing of the Saturn V and Shuttle to give me an idea of what it will look like.  In addition to the SRBs, it also has a taller S-II to accommodate the bottom of the MEM fairing.

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #3 on: 09/25/2014 11:08 PM »
And finally, for Moonlab, I plan on building a wet workshop, and just add a Soyuz to the docking port.  Something like this.

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #4 on: 09/26/2014 12:12 AM »
I am so glad I never throw away spare parts!!

Online mike robel

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #5 on: 09/26/2014 02:57 AM »
Great concepts!  I like the use of the Nerva on the SIVB.  I'm gonna steal that.

Here are my Voyager based space craft.

First:  The Saturn VB.  My interpretation of it had 120 in UA1207 SRBS as found on the Titan IIIC.  The differences between it and a stock Saturn V are of course the SRBs.  I then used an extra interstage to for the MEM storage between the S-II and the base of the hab module.

I used the Realspace 1:144 coversion kit for a more accurate block II and shroud.  I also ordered the Solor Panel fairings from Realspace.com

Next up is the complete orbital stack.  As you surmise, this came from 3 S-II's and 2 S-IVBs.  The base of the shroud for the MEM is the Revell S-II Engine mount cut off to fit just inside the S-II-SIVB fairing.  The Solar Panal Fairing are again from Real Space.  After the Airfix kit came out, I used the S-II thrust structure from it and replaced the Revell structure.

Finally is the craft after insertion for home.  Again 2 SIVBs.  I scratch built the solar panels and added some detail to the SIVB thrust structure.  I still have the Block I kit model on the nose, but since I got it out to take the pictures, I'll change it out for a new Block II.

I prowled E-bay and bought lots of junked Saturn V kits and some I found in local junk toy shops.  You need to use a lot of SII-SIVB shrouds to build all the variants.

In summary:
from realspacemodels.com
4 UA 1207 Titan IV Boosters.  (Although  you could use shuttle SRBs instead.)
2 Apollo CSM conversion kits for an improved model of the command module, better escape tower, and accurate shroud.
2 noses from his Saturn IB kit for the first SIVB orbital flight.
3 sets of Solar panel covers from his skylab conversion kit.

He has since brought out a skylab which could be used for the hab module, depending on how you want to display it.  He also has on-orbit Block II Apollo CSMs.

I would buy an Airfix Kit for the S-II Thrust structure.  It also has corrected Block II Apollo and shroud.

for the orbital cluster:
3 S-IIs
2 SIVBs
3 or four S-II to SIVB shrouds.  (although I have started to draw a S-II sized nose cone that looks like a large skylab for a more pleasing shape and also one for the MEM.  If I do, I will get Glenn to mold them.  Stay tuned.

Shapeways has a landed MEM and one that has the retropack and shrouds.  The shrouds are removable, but the retro pack appears not to be.

I am now thinking of doing another Saturn VB with a new shroud partily cut away to show the MEM inside the launch vehicle. 

If you have any questions, feel free to ask!


Online mike robel

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #6 on: 09/26/2014 03:02 AM »

Online mike robel

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #7 on: 09/26/2014 03:05 AM »
And that's the lot.  I think in the MEM thread in Historical Space Flight I posted my scratch built 1:144 MEM and the 1:144 Shapeways MEM.  Like I said, I'm thinking about getting the "reentry version" for launch and/or Mars Orbit display.

If you consider the skylab kit from Realspace, it comes with the ATM mount and solar panels, but he built it as it ended up in orbit together with the parasals.  At some point he is going to release one as designed, but I don't know when.  But he will sell you just the pieces for the lab because he molds those.

Online mike robel

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #8 on: 09/26/2014 03:10 AM »
Hmm.  I don't know anyone who makes a 1:144 Soyuz.  You would have to rob one from a MIR or ISS kit.

Here's Glenn's web site, if you don't have it:

http://realspacemodels.com/html/catalog.htm

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #9 on: 09/26/2014 11:27 AM »
Thanks Mike!  I already have Glenn's Skylab model.   It is amazing.  I just finished his Atlas-Dream Chaser and built his Delta IV-EFT-1 in the spring.  I have a Soyuz from the Revell ISS, but I would have to remove the Orbital Module because it was not used for Moonlab.  I was hoping to build the stack so I can reconfigure the same model into each configuration.  I think I have figured out a way to do that with telescoping tubes running through the center of the stack. 

I have been looking at your builds and watching the MEM thread for inspiration. 

As for the Saturn VB, the book state the SRBs are 12ft in diameter and 150ft long, which is why I am using shuttle SRBs.  I have an interstage I was going to use for the MEM fairing, and the S-II top from the Revell kit to use as the base of the MEM garage. 

It will have a lot of parts I can swap out, like the solar panels, in both closed and open configuration. Those I was planning on building from plastic strip and printed paper panels.  I haven't decided if I want the Moonlab to have the windmill arrays or some earlier design.

« Last Edit: 09/26/2014 11:29 AM by Ronpur50 »

Offline Archibald

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #10 on: 09/26/2014 01:27 PM »
This is amazing, as much as the voyage novel by itself. Stephen Baxter somewhat repaired a historical prejudice when he wrote that book...  true, the Mars plans were gathering dust among NASA archives; someone HAD to write THE novel around them. He did it.

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #11 on: 09/26/2014 09:52 PM »
This is amazing, as much as the voyage novel by itself. Stephen Baxter somewhat repaired a historical prejudice when he wrote that book...  true, the Mars plans were gathering dust among NASA archives; someone HAD to write THE novel around them. He did it.

I wish he had written the return part of the Voyage as well as surface operations.  But, it is a great book, and I can't believe it has taken me this long to re-read it. 

Online mike robel

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #12 on: 09/27/2014 12:12 AM »
I really like the book.  Read it about once a year.  It is actually what got me back into modeling in 1998 which is when I started my Saturn VB.

The problem with the book is it is heavily drawn from Apollo, even to some of the dialogue.

I also really enjoy Mars Race by Greg Benford.

First Step by Zubrin is not bad.

I think if you use SRBS, you will need to extend the S-IC for a proper mount.  Of course, it is a model, so make it your own.

I was bad and ordered the 1/144 MEM with the retropack and Shroud.  Here we go...

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #13 on: 09/27/2014 12:44 AM »
I think if you use SRBS, you will need to extend the S-IC for a proper mount.  Of course, it is a model, so make it your own.

I have been looking at that.  If the bottom of the SRB nozzle is at the base of the F1 engine, it will be just at the top of the stage for the forward attach point.  Other wise, it will be into the interstage.  I don't think it will matter....but, as it happens, I have a stretched S-IC that I built years ago for another project that I never finished!

Either way, there had to be some structural work done for the SRBs.  I wonder what was done to combat the Stretch of the stack that resulted in the unmanned Saturn VB loss .  It isn't covered in the book that I remember.
« Last Edit: 09/27/2014 12:48 AM by Ronpur50 »

Online mike robel

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #14 on: 09/27/2014 02:21 AM »
The loss was due to a line freezing on the LOX Line as I recall.  They put in a bellows to allow it to flex or not flex...I forget the details.

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #15 on: 09/27/2014 02:31 PM »
I have the major sections set up, and I made a series of tubes in the middle of them so they can be connected.  The center tubes are actually rolls from receipt paper.  Then, Plastrux tubes will hold them together.  I need to get the correct diameter tube for it, the only one I had on hand is too small, so I wrapped in tape for now.

The MS-II stage is built up from and Airfix Saturn V S-II.  I reversed the engine shield so the raised section is now the docking port for the fueling tankers used to fuel the Earth Departure stage and ETs. 

The Saturn V is an old Monogram model.  I am using it because it does not have the ullage rockets on the interstage, as the later Saturns did not have.  I added a section on the top of the S-II to hold the MEM garage. 

Online mike robel

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #16 on: 09/27/2014 03:08 PM »
nice progress.  good concept for connection

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #17 on: 09/27/2014 04:26 PM »
Thanks.  I used it on an ISS I built years ago, and that had a lot more connections. 
I just finished re-reading Voyage today.  I am sad that I am done, but now I have more time for the model!

Offline Dalhousie

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #18 on: 09/27/2014 09:14 PM »
The loss was due to a line freezing on the LOX Line as I recall.  They put in a bellows to allow it to flex or not flex...I forget the details.

I think ice on the LH2 bellows is what killed Apollo N. The launch stretch broke the LOX lines and killed the S-VB
"There is nobody who is a bigger fan of sending robots to Mars than me... But I believe firmly that the best, the most comprehensive, the most successful exploration will be done by humans" Steve Squyres

Offline Ronpur50

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Re: Modelling Mars
« Reply #19 on: 09/28/2014 02:00 AM »
I love that we can actually discuss what happened to fictional missions like they were real missions.  That is just one reason I like the book so much.

I wish I had the talent to design mission patches for the flights!

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