By RedSpecial
#4930412
Another day another minor update.

I threw together a quick template from the cast in nfilter on the shell, then transferred it to the aluminium nfilter and rough cut it to shape.
This will be refined once the cast in nfilter has been removed by filing it down a little at a time after checking the fit against the shell to ensure it fits as close to the shell as possible.

I also picked up a red Arcolectric indicator lens for the thrower. ImageImage
By RedSpecial
#4930497
While I'm trying to make this pack as accurate as possible, the one area where I'll be making a concession is the electronics.

Partially because I lack the knowhow and experience to design and create my own and don't really have the time or funds to dedicate to thst right now, but also to save on the weight and having to replace bulbs, etc on an accurate incandescent setup.

So I'll be using the Gbfans LED setup instead.
Although I will still be using the aluminium powercell and cyclotron brackets that the Hero's used, in an effort to keep it as accurate as possible, using the Gbfans setup.

With that in mind, I went about looking into finding the blue perforated board, as seen on the Super Hero.

Initially, I looked at perf board and proto board but they all seem to be prelined with tinned copper, which would have to be removed.
I didn't fancy doing that because of my electronic ineptitude, I'm paranoid that I'd manage to short out the circuit board if I missed any of it.

Fortunately though I stumbled across this blue perforated crossover board which is apparently used by speaker designers and has no metallic coating.
It also seems to be just about the right size as stock at around 5"x3.5", although it does also come in a larger size.

I'll be using that to mount the cyclotron lights to the aluminium bracket with some custom peices to mimic the ceramic bulb holders and I'll most likely mount the Gbfans sound board on another peice of crossover board up behind the crank generator or booster tube. Image
User avatar
By JWils23
#4930507
RedSpecial wrote: January 27th, 2020, 7:45 am While I'm trying to make this pack as accurate as possible, the one area where I'll be making a concession is the electronics.

Partially because I lack the knowhow and experience to design and create my own and don't really have the time or funds to dedicate to thst right now, but also to save on the weight and having to replace bulbs, etc on an accurate incandescent setup.

So I'll be using the Gbfans LED setup instead.
Although I will still be using the aluminium powercell and cyclotron brackets that the Hero's used, in an effort to keep it as accurate as possible, using the Gbfans setup.

With that in mind, I went about looking into finding the blue perforated board, as seen on the Super Hero.

Initially, I looked at perf board and proto board but they all seem to be prelined with tinned copper, which would have to be removed.
I didn't fancy doing that because of my electronic ineptitude, I'm paranoid that I'd manage to short out the circuit board if I missed any of it.

Fortunately though I stumbled across this blue perforated crossover board which is apparently used by speaker designers and has no metallic coating.
It also seems to be just about the right size as stock at around 5"x3.5", although it does also come in a larger size.

I'll be using that to mount the cyclotron lights to the aluminium bracket with some custom peices to mimic the ceramic bulb holders and I'll most likely mount the Gbfans sound board on another peice of crossover board up behind the crank generator or booster tube. Image
Red have you seen Doug’s LED kit that is made up to look just like the original incandescent lights? It may scratch the itch of wanting to look original but still being LED and ready to go. I bought the kit for my build and as is usual with Doug’s work it’s beautiful!
viewtopic.php?f=31&t=45634
By RedSpecial
#4930510
I did see that but unfortunately I had just bought the standard kit which was delivered about three days before he brought the new one out
Otherwise I would have snapped it up in a heartbeat.
It looks amazing.

I'll just need to use what I have though.
There's no point in paying more money for the new version and having to pay the customs charges all over again.

If it bugs me that much I can always upgrade it down the line since it'll be easy to switch it out.
User avatar
By JWils23
#4930566
Oh I gotcha, just wanted to make sure you knew about those since that thread seems to be buried in the for sale section. I have no doubt that whatever kit you use you’ll make it look great given this thread so far!
By RedSpecial
#4930568
Thanks man.
And cheers for the heads up.
I was just too impatient because of the three month lead time on the kits so I grabbed them as soon as they were available.
By RedSpecial
#4930608
The female side of the V-hook that I had unfortunately didn't line up with the GBfans guntrack so I made a new one from a small steel plate.

I used measurements of the male part of the V-hook as well as measurements of the spacer block from the guntrack in order mark out the basic shape of the part.
Then cut out the rough shape using a dremel metal cutting disk and bent the edges around a peice of aluminium the same thickness as the male part, using a rubber mallet before drilling and stamping out countersunk mounting holes.ImageImage
By damster117
#4930783
Some fantastic work here! Can you tell me your technique for shaping parts like the thrower in aluminium? I'm looking to start my own pack build this year (as well as completing my trap I started in 2015...) and I'm attempting increasing amounts of metalwork- any tips would be greatly appreciated!

It's interesting to hear you're welding for the first time on this project, did you teach yourself? I've brazed a few parts together such as my trap handle but welding is another area I'd like to get into! Sorry for all the questions, and again, what a great build so far!
RedSpecial wrote: July 3rd, 2019, 8:48 am I know, I know.
Another GB hero pack build but It's been almost a decade since I put together my current pack so I thought it was time for an upgrade.

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There's not likely to be anything here that hasn't been seen a hundred times or more but thanks for taking the time to have a look anyway :)

I haven't exactly been all that active in the community over that time, regrettably but real life has a tendency of getting in the way of these things.
This place seems much more quiet than it used to be, sadly.
Most likely due in part to facebooks current grip.
Although its still the amazing resource that its always been.

I've really enjoyed reading over all my old favourite threads and finding some new favourites over the last couple of months or so while i slowly started to gather parts and give myself a refresher course on all the discoveries that have been made about the packs, so I cant wait to jump in and get started on a hero pack of my own.

I'll be canibalising my current pack for all of the vintage fittings and a few replica bits that I can salvage.
I've done a little special effects work over the last eight years or so and picked up a couple of things, so i plan to make most of the aluminium parts myself, other than those that I would need a milling machine to make.

I've made a start on the thrower so far but ive still got a long way to go with it.

( the frosted tube and trigger tip are from my current pack)
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I decided to go with the GBfans shell for this build.
One of the selling points for me was that it seemed to come with the Homax style texture already present on the shell, going from the build threads that i could find.

For whatever reason my shell didn't really have this other than in a few small areas.

Instead there are patches of really rough, almost sand paper feeling texture dotted about the place and the odd smooth spot.
Kind of difficult to pick up on camera.
That's no big deal though, just a couple of extra steps before painting :)

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The shell itself is a work of art, I'm loving all the details that have been painstakingly added to it.
Its a great, uniform thickness and sits really nice and level right out of the box.

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I was a bit worried that it might have got manhandled and chipped on the way to Scotland but it's in perfect shape.

I've ordered the texture, which is going to take the best part of a month to get to me but thankfully I've got plenty to do in the meantime :P
Hopefully I'll have something to show soon!
By RedSpecial
#4930785
I have a pretty lotech setup.
A chop saw and a mini lathe for some of the tube based parts and for the parts that need to be shaped out of sheet aluminium I usually cut out the rough shape using a combination of a jigsaw, an angle grinder with a thin cutting disk and some metal cutting disks on the dremel then refine them using various files.

To bend the sheet stock parts, I'm basically just clamping peices that need to be shaped between boards or in a vice and using a rubber mallet to knock the peices into position.

It's all pretty time consuming hand work to be honest.

As for the welding, I'm actually brazing them, too due to a lack of the proper equipment for more precise welding.
As you'll know yourself, it's tricky to get things exactly as you want this way, especially with thicker weld beads compared to actual tig or mig welding but it does the job for the most part.
Last edited by RedSpecial on February 9th, 2020, 9:35 am, edited 1 time in total.
By damster117
#4930788
Sounds like you have the same basic setup as me which makes what you've achieved even more impressive. But it means I have no excuse not to attempt this! You do realise you're encouraging me? The wife will NOT be pleased! lol!

I've been pleasantly surprised with how the weld beads look for GB stuff actually. The original props didn't have the immaculate weld beads of some replicas so I think the brazing is a close approximation. One issue I have is clamping the more tricky parts in place while heating them up though.
By RedSpecial
#4930790
I'm sorry for encouraging you haha.

Yeah thankfully most of the welds are pretty ugly on the original packs so you can get away with a lot there.

For clamping parts like the beamline, filler tubes, etc to weld the end caps on I've found it's best to clamp them vertically so that the end cap to be attached is pointing down towards the floor.
(although it took some time to figure that out)
It's especially useful for larger beads such as the ones on the Nfilter
I've been using a speed clamp with the handle stuck in a vice so that I can easily position it to make sure it's nice and level.

As long as they're sitting level, the bead turns out fairly well, but if they're at an angle at all it tends to pool and cause clumps at the low spot.

I also use a peice of thick ceramic tile at each end between the part and the clamp to dissapate the heat away from the clamp which seems to make the parts get up to temp a bit faster.

For flat parts I try to keep them as level as possible.

User avatar
By abritinthebay
#4930871
RedSpecial wrote: January 12th, 2020, 5:33 pm I aged it to a nice dark reddish brown patina by sealing it in an air tight container for six hours with crushed, over boiled egg yolks.
The yolk releases sulfur which reacts with the copper
This is VERY clever. I've used Liver of Sulphur for mine but it tends to over-blacken. I might try this with a touch of it in there (a little goes a VERY long way) as I prefer a slightly darker look, but that's a really smart hack. I love it.
By RedSpecial
#4930904
Thanks.
Thats just what I happened to have on hand but there's quite a few home supply methods that'll give you different types of patina, such as vinegar wash, bicarbonate of soda and warm water, bleach, lemon juice and salt, etc.

You'll definitely get quicker results with the chemical approach mind you but you can always add more eggs and leave it longer for a darker finish.
By RedSpecial
#4930984
I'm in limbo right now as I'm too under the weather to do any fiberglassing and I'm waiting for some supplies for my other project but I received the last of the parts that I needed to buy.
An accurate extruded aluminium wavy finned heatsink, a machined rear cylinder and a clear Arcolectric lens for the thrower.

Hopefully I'll be able to get stuck into the build again early next week. Image
By RedSpecial
#4931095
I'm still full of the lurgy and as weak as a reused teabag so I just decided to do a bit of reorganising as my parts were split between various boxes.
It's a mix of genuine vintage parts and replicas.
I do love a good parts box.

The supplies I was waiting on also arrived after delays caused by the crazy weather we've been having so fingers crossed, I'll make some decent progress soon. Image
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By damster117
#4931267
Some great tips there especially the pieces of tile! It takes an age for me to heat up anything, I think I need to buy a more serious torch though too.

You don't happen to have a picture of your speed clamp do you? I just want to see if it's what I already have as people tend to call these things by all sorts of different names!

I've only tackled small bits so far so I'm particularly impressed you did the N filter bead. Keep up the good work :)
RedSpecial wrote: February 4th, 2020, 5:16 pm I'm sorry for encouraging you haha.

Yeah thankfully most of the welds are pretty ugly on the original packs so you can get away with a lot there.

For clamping parts like the beamline, filler tubes, etc to weld the end caps on I've found it's best to clamp them vertically so that the end cap to be attached is pointing down towards the floor.
(although it took some time to figure that out)
It's especially useful for larger beads such as the ones on the Nfilter
I've been using a speed clamp with the handle stuck in a vice so that I can easily position it to make sure it's nice and level.

As long as they're sitting level, the bead turns out fairly well, but if they're at an angle at all it tends to pool and cause clumps at the low spot.

I also use a peice of thick ceramic tile at each end between the part and the clamp to dissapate the heat away from the clamp which seems to make the parts get up to temp a bit faster.

For flat parts I try to keep them as level as possible.
RedSpecial liked this
By RedSpecial
#4931445
Thanks!

These are the speed clamps I've been using.
This version is pretty ancient mind you.
I think the ones I have are at least a couple of decades older than I am but they get the job done.

The torch I use is a rothenberger superfire 2 with Mapp gas.
It's a beast and gets things up to temp in no time at all.

Image

By RedSpecial
#4931528
Today I'm staring the process of removing the cast in Nfilter in order to attach my aluminium version.

The first step is to clay off the cast in nfilter so that fiberglass can be applied in order to seal the shell before it's cut off.

I'm using water based buff clay for this as it's quick to work, apply and shape as well as very easy to cleanup any clay residue while I'm applying it and once I've removed the part using a cloth and water or 99% isopropyl alcohol.

Don't use this clay if you plan on using a polyester laminating resin as the moisture in the clay will inhibit the cure.
Oil based clay should be used in that case.

I'll be using epoxy laminating resin instead which isn't affected by the moisture.
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By RedSpecial
#4931569
Here's the result after about eight or nine layers of fiberglass using a fine woven fiberglass cloth.
Normally the resin I use for this takes eight minutes to cure enough for the subsequent layer of glass to be applied but due to the cold temperatures here each layer took an hour, so it was an all day project.

I also have to leave it for 24 hours after the last layer to be fully cured in order to be able to ensure its strong enough before I remove the cast in nfilter but I'm going to leave it for an extra day just to be sure, given the slow cure of the layers.Image
By RedSpecial
#4931640
While I wait on the fiberglass layup for the N-filter to be at full strength I decided to add a few small detail parts to the bumper, which I've been meaning to do for a while now.

Namely the visible ends of the wire armature that can be seen on some of the hero bumpers.
I've based the placement loosely on the Murray Hero pack.

Once the epoxy has set, these will be masked off before painting the bumper, then unmasked after the paint has dried to expose the bare metal. Image
By RedSpecial
#4931936
I've started to remove the cast in nfilter.
You can see just how nice and uniformly thick these shells are.

It's still covered in clay residue but you can just make out the new fiberglass part that is inside the nfilter which is essentially a roughly resculpted section of the cyclotron where there would have just been a hole previously.

This will give me a nice robust structure to bolt the aluminium nfilter on to once I've removed what's left of the old one. Image
By RedSpecial
#4931986
I managed to remove the last of the excess material today after a lot of careful dremel work.
This is what's left of the cast in part.
It won't go to waste though as I'll be using it for some texture tests :)

The next step will be to carefully file the edges of my aluminium N-filter until it fits the contours of the shell. ImageImage
By RedSpecial
#4932103
Well, that was a bit of a marathon but the shiny new aluminium version is finally attached.

Next up will be the Ion arm and internal brackets for all the electrical components. Image
By RedSpecial
#4932105
I decided to dry fit everything I have so far.
I'm close to finishing now but it's all of the difficult bits that I have left.
Apart for the internal brackets, those are easy enough.

ImageImage
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By damster117
#4932372
That's better than the modern ones I have, don't seem to be many about without plastic pads on the jaws which isn't much use!

Ah mapp gas! I thought that might be too hot but I'll give it a shot if you're using it ok. Thanks for the advice :)
RedSpecial wrote: February 22nd, 2020, 7:18 pm Thanks!

These are the speed clamps I've been using.
This version is pretty ancient mind you.
I think the ones I have are at least a couple of decades older than I am but they get the job done.

The torch I use is a rothenberger superfire 2 with Mapp gas.
It's a beast and gets things up to temp in no time at all.

Image
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