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Old 12-02-2019, 03:26 PM   #46
ScratchBuilt
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Re: 1/8 Porsche 956

Hello again,


It's been a productive couple of weeks since my last update having some time off work is always good. As usual, I've been able to do plenty of jobs I wanted to do, some jobs I hadn't expected to do, and didn't do a few things I planned to! I've got about seventeen photos to go with this one, so I'll break it into two and post the second half tomorrow night.


So, what's first? With the steering rack drilled and pinned in place I made a couple of cardboard templates for the front upper and lower wishbones I wanted to be sure that the suspension pickups were in basically the right place, and that the damper mounting wasn't about to get in the way:



Looks good so far. I've deliberately left the pick-ups undrilled for now until I start making the wishbones, so I've got a bit of wriggle-room for correcting the set-up geometry. The lower wishbones will be quite solid in construction, but the uppers are going to be a little 'fiddly' I'll need to be careful how I make these.


Next, I made the centre spine which divides the cockpit. I've left slots in the rear bulkhead and the front crossmember, so there's no problem getting the alignment right, and hopefully it will stiffen the floor. I made it in three layers 0.5 and 0.75mm styrene for the outer skins, and a fibreglass centre which should help to avoid warping over time. You'll see in a later photo where the swaged holes have been cut out, and a slot added for the upper seat mounting; when it's finished it'll also have a lip added to the top edge.



I wanted to get the tubular roll-over hoops underway during my holiday too, as I knew these would be a time-consuming job. As well as making the actual hoops, I also had to start making the folded brackets which would attach them to the tub, and to make those I had to make sure the tub skin was layered-up properly.


Here's the rear hoop over the top of the fuel cell:



At this stage I had layered the inner fibreglass skins with the outer styrene skin, then made the top brackets to suit. The ali tubes at the rear corners will eventually connect to the main hoop, and provide a neat location for the brackets in the meantime. The hoop has been formed from two lengths of plastic-coated wire rod, with short sections of styrene tube threaded over the top Greenstuff will fill the gaps, and there will be lots of filing and smoothing to get it all looking right!


The fuel cell top panels received more attention there will be two large swaged holes in the top of the tub where the fuel filler and breather tubes will exit, and a third hole where other fittings attach to the bag tank. The black rings of till-roll tube will create the swaged edges, but I also cut through the fibreglass layer so that I could inset three styrene discs as the 'top' of the bag tank. If I'm lucky I can add the detailing to these discs but leave them 'floating' in the top of the tub might make it easier to get everything lined-up when the bodywork is eventually fitted.






With the rear hoop under control, I spent some time working on the front hoop. For now I've dummied this up with length of (slightly oversize) flexible fire-extinguisher piping, but I need to make it properly as per the rear hoop. The mounting brackets for this hoop are more complicated, as they sit at the intersection of the dashboard and the main tub, and wrap over the sides:





I've made them oversize for now, but will fettle them to shape when I've got the hoop ready they need to be aligned properly. Here's a better view of the four brackets made so far:



The last two brackets sit on the top corners of the dashboard frame, and are on the list of things to do this week.


I'll continue the update tomorrow night steering wheel, gearshift and fire-bottle action!


SB
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Old 12-03-2019, 02:57 PM   #47
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Re: 1/8 Porsche 956

Here's the rest of the update, as promised.


With the steering rack 90% complete I wanted to continue by making the steering wheel and mounting brackets. The steering wheel was basically the same construction as for the 935, just a slightly smaller diameter (40mm) and a subtly different spoke layout. I cut two pairs of rings from 0.5mm and 0.75mm styrene to create the bulk of the rim, and a final single layer of 1mm for the centre. Notches cut into the 1mm ring would allow me to fit the T-shaped spoke section after I'd finished smoothing and shaping the outer rim. A smear of greenstuff around the inside edge filled the gaps and allowed some stitching details to be added, and some extra pieces of 0.25mm strip completed the joints between the spokes and the rim.





The mounting bracket for the steering wheel is a two-part component a main bracket which is rivetted to the underside of the dashboard frame, and a smaller block which slips over the column and can be bolted into various positions to adjust the height of the wheel. I'd cut the notch into the dashboard frame some time ago, but had to adjust this a little to get everything in alignment. The ali tube is a placeholder for now, but is about the right length. Since taking this particular photo I've added the outer skin to the dashboard frame and tidied-up around the bracket I'll show this another time.




Staying in the cockpit, I've made a start on the fire extinguisher bottles. This is another one of those areas where you're torn between making what was correct in-period, or making what's been fitted later. The original drawings I've been working from clearly show two bottles positioned in the passenger side of the cockpit (much as in the 935). One would be piped into the engine bay, the other into the cockpit, so that's what I'm doing. The smaller bottle is made from 15mm till-roll again, the larger one from a length of 20mm diameter nylon rod. I shaped the ends with a combination of styrene tube foundations and Greenstuff, leaving a tube in one end of each to attach the firing head, etc, later.





The mounting brackets are in the original 956/962 style and will eventually be incorporated into the floor and crossmember structure. A couple of straps will loop over the top and hold everything in place these will either be made from aluminium strip or styrene, depending on how I feel at the time!


The final major job I wanted to tackle while on holiday was to get the gearshift underway. Compared to the 935 it's quite a delicate mechanism, particularly the lever and mounting block. It's also the first Porsche model I've built where the gearknob isn't a round ball! The photos tell the story better than I can the tricky bit was creating the fork on the bottom of the main shift lever, but greenstuff and some fettling work wonders. I'm not intending the mechanism to be functional, so the bent section of linkage through the cockpit doesn't have to mate exactly with the section which will eventually be in the engine bay. I still need to make a tiny rod which connects the lever to the mounting block and provides the second pivot, but that's a job for another time.









Amongst all these main jobs I've also been spending some time cutting and refining some of the fibreglass and styrene tub panels. Some of this has been prompted by the need to make the brackets for the roll-hoops, but mainly it's just been an opportunity to do some simple-but-satisfying work. Here's a final shot which pulls everything together:




One thing I've been thinking about during these last few weeks is how different some of these sub-projects have been, time and effort-wise, compared to the 935-78. The 956 steering column, for example, has taken a fraction of the time I spent ages getting the different sections of the 935's the right length, making the universal joints, etc. The 935 fuel tank took a long time making the foam core, adjusting the fit several times into the front of the chassis, panelling it, gluing the fibreglass cloth over the top, painting, etc...whereas in the 956 the fuel tank is hidden inside the tub, so doesn't have to be made! All I will need to make are the filler necks, connection pipework, etc, and that's it. I've been thinking of all the time I spent test-fitting the 935 panels, juggling the engine and gearbox in and out of the frame, even just adding the trackrods to the ends of the steering rack was an exercise in frustration every time! I'm not pretending that there won't be struggles and headaches with the 956 somewhere down the line, but considering I've not yet reached the one-year mark with this project I'm very pleased with the progress I've made.


Have a good week, and hopefully next time I'll have a roll-cage to talk about.


SB
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Old 12-03-2019, 11:40 PM   #48
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Re: 1/8 Porsche 956

I'm applauding your skill. Terrific update and astonishing scratchbuilding.
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