Saturday, 28 February 2015

Dragon Saladin Mk2 Suspension Fix

Well I started last night and got the upper and lower hull parts glued together, no problems here and a good positive fit all round. I just popped in the drivers hatch to show the fit as I'm still undecided as to whether I fit a figure on this one. 

I next turned my attention to the suspension. Over on modelworx we have been having a discussion about the height of the finished model. One of the guys Chris who has built up the model said he thought the ride height was too low. I started by assembling one of the front stations and saw that it did indeed look slightly too low. I checked my references and pictures and I reckon that the suspension could do with dropping 2 to 3 mm. I then drilled and pinned the station I was working on and found that it was easy to drop the wishbones down to accomplish this.

However when I added the drive shaft I found that this forced the wishbones back up. The drive shafts come out of the hull horizontally and as these are the main contact points for the wheels dictate the ride height. On checking refs again I found that the driveshafts should have a dog leg. 

My solution to this was to make new shafts from plastic rod which enabled me to drop the wishbones and also lower the hubs slightly. On the real vehicle the bottom of the outer wheel hubs should line up with the lower hull bottom. In the picture below you can see the modified drive shafts on the right.

Below you can see the difference with the modified shaft on the left and unmodified on the right.

Of course I know we are only talking a couple of mil here but I wanted to see how difficult it would be to adjust and come up with a simple workable solution. You can build the model as is and I suspect it wouldn't really make much difference to the look of the model. However it's always nice to have an alternative if you are so inclined.

I have now made up the rest of the suspension parts and will glue them in place then use some spacers under the hull to get the correct height and ensure all the lower wishbones are grounded. 

The wheels and hubs are very nice indeed and the outer hubs have some cracking bolts on them. However be careful when cleaning these up as the sprue runners are very thick and connect to the part on the front edges. a good sharp scalpel and sanding though ensures a nice clean edge.

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