Jump to content

1/18 Bell Aerosystems LLRV 1 (aka NASA 950/LLTV A1)

Recommended Posts

Hi Pete,  my entry will be LLRV No. 1  (NASA 950).   This LLRV initially had wheels  and an open cockpit but was later modified to LLTV specs (with side controller and enclosed cockpit and pogo struts) and redesignated as LLTV A1.  I'll be modelling it as such - the way it looked on the 8th of May, 1968 --- before the crash, and not after (hopefully), heheh.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It's good to see you here CJ!


So-o-o ... you have two options ... you can complete it as LLRV #1 ... or-r-r if it doesn't get finished, as LLRV #1 AFTER the crash!


Win win ... !  :whistle:  :thumbsup:


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...
4 hours ago, niart17 said:

Such clean precise work. Blown away as always.

Me-e-e-e ... too-o-o-o ... and to see the size of this item, beside the Tamiya glue bottle ... in all it's tiny goodness, dang cj, do you know how GOOD you are!


... oh dear, I hope I didn't jinx it now ...   :rolleyes:



Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, Bill!   : )    Hey, Pete, thanks!  No worries,  it's jinx-proof.  Just the crash pieces if I don't finish, remember?   : )








Even though the landing radar was updated to the box-like ones on the LLTV, this training vehicle retained the original rounded ones:











Edited by crackerjazz
Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't recall, do you have a Critcut or a Cameo Sillouette or something? I can't imagine cutting such precise clean shapes without some sort of cutter doing it. If this is old school drafting on plastic I'm super impressed even more...er.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Bill, wow, thanks!  All hand-cut so far.   Something I do find very useful, though, especially for parts with flat faces, is printing the part in exact size onto paper and gluing it onto sheet styrene for cutting with the xacto knife (or the Chopper by Northwest Short Line) after which I would peel the paper off.  I would do this for every facet of the part then glue those flat parts together.   You get more accurate cuts this way, too, than cutting pencil drawings on sheet styrene.   For parts like below, though, where I can't use the technique above, I still panic and just try my best to shape something out of styrene.    











Link to post
Share on other sites

Shaped a rod into a hexagon by shaving the sides flat...














I wasn't able to get any photos while building the regulators and related parts.  Was too excited to see how they would look glued on.   All  could say is that all that cutting and gluing seemed to never end.  The upper back ache it has caused hasn't let up and was so glad they're done.  Unfortunately , I still have the front thrusters to do -- oh no : (


One of the pipes are too short -- will have to spin another one on the dremel.   Something I noticed about using the dremel as a lathe is that the styrene rod behaves like a wagging tail.   It either creates ridges on the part like what happened to the thrusters (the ridges don't show too well in the photos because the bright white color tends to wash out), or the final shape isn't really symmetrical.   I've tried different blade angles to avoid it but haven't been successful so far.   There has to be a way to hold down the other end.   Not sure if those lathes I see online will work as they are built for wood or metal and not for flimsy 0.5mm rods.














Next up will do the supports and tanks under the aft deck.

Link to post
Share on other sites

AMAZING. Now you're making your own plastic shape hex rods?!? Comon' man' that ain't right! At least try to make it look hard so we don't feel so out-matched. :cheers:


Seriously though, this is really impressive. I'm learning so much. Keep it up. 



Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, crackerjazz said:

Something I noticed about using the dremel as a lathe is that the styrene rod behaves like a wagging tail. .... 


Try slowing down your dremel. Sounds like you’re getting a vibration, a harmonic based on rod dimensions and blade pressure...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks habu2, I might have to look for a speed controller.   The slowest setting on mine is still way too fast.  Hi Bill, CapO, ApolloMan, thanks guys!   : )


Some progress on the aft deck underside.  The attitude thrusters are powered by helium-pressurized Hydrogen peroxide.  Got the helium tanks attached....



When the parts are too small the paper pattern glued onto the styrene sheet sometimes peels off prematurely while cutting; I find it easier to just mark where to drill and cut.





















Link to post
Share on other sites

Ho ... Lee ... Schmitt! :jaw-dropping:


Your skills ... sheesh ... just out-STAND-ing! But I do love spending many minutes just looking at your build CJ ... trying to figure out just how-w-w you do-o-o it!



... meanwhile, a couple hours later-r-r ......  After perusing your build some more ... my gawd, your details are just in-cred-ible ... ( Hex nuts, really? ) your question about the wobble in the Dremel. My Dremel, even at the slowest speed, is too fast.

When I tried this lathe method awhile ago, not with 0.5 mm rod, mind you, I placed the Dremel on the table top.

The Rod stock was longer than it needed to be. 

One end of the Rod in the Dremel, the other end in a home-made block of styrene, with a little divot in it to place the free end of the rod. The block was clamped to the table top. I lathed out the middle of the Rod stock, and it was steady enough. 


I hope this helps CJ ...

Edited by K2Pete
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Your detail work is fantastic.  The bent styrene rods look great.  What method do you use to bend them without breaking them?  Also, how did you do the raised rivet pattern on the side of the avionics box?


Can't wait to see more!




Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, John!   Hi Randy, thanks!  The 0.3mm was very flexible and I had no issues at all bending them at 90 degrees with the long nose pliers.   I do try to bend slowly to prevent breakage.   The raised rivets are pin-pricks on the back of the styrene sheet, something I learned from johnbuck's fantastic LM airframe build : )


I don't know what you call this thing in the back.  On LLRV No. 2 this is positioned over to the right side of the avionics box, but is in the middle on LLRV No. 1.    



















Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey, thanks Mick and CapO!!!   : )


I will now attempt to detail the engine, with the CF700 maintenance manual and Tony's photos to help me out.  The CF700 engine is still in use today on the Falcon private jet so there were some good maintenance photos I found online, although the CF700 2V on the LLRV has some differences, being meant for vertical installation/operation.    Some progress on the accessory drive parts...








+ oil tank...








There's a lot to do.... about 20 years ought to do it....

Link to post
Share on other sites

All I can say is WOW!  Following this build is a real eye opener for what is possible.  If on a future build I can do a quarter of what you are doing I'll be ecstatic.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...