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Any interest in an aftermarket Merlin engine/P-51 engine bay?


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Hi guys, Some of you might remember me as the guy doing a CAD model of the Packard Merlin engine which I posted about a while ago.  I just got myself a very pretty SLA 3D printer and have been playing around with printing some of the CAD models I have been working on.  I'm kind of curious if there is any interest in me creating a line of large scale AM kits for use in larger scale static models, e.g. 16th, 18th, 24th, and 32nd scales. I might even see if I can create the entire P-51 engine bay, I've got the blueprints for it. But I'm not sure if anyone would want to buy something like that.  Well, that's not true I am sure some people would be interested, I just don't know how many and how much it would be worth to them.  I haven't found anyone else doing these yet so I am hoping there would be enough interest to make it worth my time, what do you guys think?  If there is enough interest I hope to branch out to other AM kits for stuff I've worked on such as landing gear bays and gun bays, etc.  

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33 minutes ago, rtwpsom2 said:

Hi guys, Some of you might remember me as the guy doing a CAD model of the Packard Merlin engine which I posted about a while ago.  I just got myself a very pretty SLA 3D printer and have been playing around with printing some of the CAD models I have been working on.  I'm kind of curious if there is any interest in me creating a line of large scale AM kits for use in larger scale static models, e.g. 16th, 18th, 24th, and 32nd scales. I might even see if I can create the entire P-51 engine bay, I've got the blueprints for it. But I'm not sure if anyone would want to buy something like that.  Well, that's not true I am sure some people would be interested, I just don't know how many and how much it would be worth to them.  I haven't found anyone else doing these yet so I am hoping there would be enough interest to make it worth my time, what do you guys think?  If there is enough interest I hope to branch out to other AM kits for stuff I've worked on such as landing gear bays and gun bays, etc.  

The tamiya Mustang has a really nice engine bay, however I am sure you could improve on it.  There is a lot of detail that is missing, if you did the parts that fill out the engine bay I think it could really help the kit.  If you look at the Tamiya P-51D, you could find room to improve the gun bays and the wheel bays as well.  There are some pretty good cockpit options at this point.   I have long thought especially with the Tamiya kits, the basics are perfectly good, just fill in where things are softer than they could be without having to cut everything up.  

 

Take the wheel bay, you could leave the integration for how the landing gear fit, just do the rest of the wheel bay insert and center section.  

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That certainly is an appealing idea but I also wonder if the presence of a Merlin in the Tamiya and Zoukei-Mura kits would mean a lessened interest in your product.

I know I would buy one for the Tamiya kit for sure.

I fully agree with CBK57, a potentially better selling product might be a plumbing set for the P-51D wheel bays or maybe a fully detailed drop in replacement.

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I would be interested if the whole kit could be used in the cheaper range of models (i.e. not Tamiya or ZM), or alternatively in small upgrades for both engine and bay.  Always handy if you can start with the most complete set & aftermarket instead of having to build everything off blueprints and/or pictures.

 

from an business perspective use the Lean apporach:  market an idea, get customer feedback quickly, then improve/change the idea as the fedback requires.

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I could see doing details that are missing in reasonably priced kits. For example, the bits and bobs attached to the canopies of some common kits: Revell Fw 190A/F, Hasegawa 109 & 190, Tamiya F-4 ,  Trumpeter SBD & TBF, etc.. As already mentioned, completely detailed wheel wells that actually fit the kit without sanding parts to impossible  thinness would be popular. Detailed prop hubs,  radios, batteries, fuselage formers & stringers, etc. Landing gear legs are usually bereft of intricate detail straight from the box - adding parts to those could be an interesting project in itself.

 

Just a few ideas folks might find interesting.

 

Cheers,

Damian

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26 minutes ago, rtwpsom2 said:

Don't forget that I want to do larger scales as well, like 24th and possibly even 18th for the HpH kit. 


Given the regular appearance of the Airfix 1/24 kit in these forums, I think there would be quite a bit of interest in a new, complete and accurate engine and wheel bay, especially the latter. At 1/18th scale, the interest in re-building the 21st Century models to a high standard of accuracy seems to be holding steady. Didn’t HpH offer a P-51 engine assembly at 1/18th scale at some point? 
 

Not that you need any more potential anchors to juggle, but I think a lot of people would appreciate a set that included highly accurate cowlings, spinners and props, with or without the option of removable panels. Getting the Mustang’s nose right is essential to many, so an integrated, power-egg style set that fixed multiple issues with the original kit would be welcome, if done right and priced reasonably. 
 

A great, super-detailed and highly accurate wheel bay set would be welcome across all large scales, I think. 
 

Super-cool project, and I hope we can see it develop.

 

Adam
 

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37 minutes ago, D.B. Andrus said:

As already mentioned, completely detailed wheel wells that actually fit the kit without sanding parts to impossible  thinness would be popular.

What is, instead of sanding the edges to incredible thinness, you could just do a cutout and drop the product in, fill any gap be on your way?  In other words the insert would already have the thin edges built in and the cutout in the kit part would be to the outside of the insert?

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42 minutes ago, rtwpsom2 said:

What is, instead of sanding the edges to incredible thinness, you could just do a cutout and drop the product in, fill any gap be on your way?  In other words the insert would already have the thin edges built in and the cutout in the kit part would be to the outside of the insert?


I like the concept a lot, but in my experience with that approach the insert almost always has to be sanded down to true it with the surface. The risk of sanding through into expensive fine detail would put me off, personally. No two examples of the same kit go together quite the same, so that adds to the problem of uniformity. Not impossible to pull off, but challenging.

 

Adam

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1 hour ago, rtwpsom2 said:

What is, instead of sanding the edges to incredible thinness, you could just do a cutout and drop the product in, fill any gap be on your way?  In other words the insert would already have the thin edges built in and the cutout in the kit part would be to the outside of the insert?

 

I was thinking not of sanding the aftermarket parts, but sanding the kit parts to be paper thin in order to allow the a/m parts to fit. A company whose name starts with an "A" is well known for this.

 

Cheers,

Damian

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1 hour ago, adameliclem said:


I like the concept a lot, but in my experience with that approach the insert almost always has to be sanded down to true it with the surface. The risk of sanding through into expensive fine detail would put me off, personally. No two examples of the same kit go together quite the same, so that adds to the problem of uniformity. Not impossible to pull off, but challenging.

 

Adam

I do not think you get shrinkage with 3D printed parts like you do with resin products.

If the item is designed for a certain kit it should fit perfectly as a replacement for the kit part.

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