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Small Land Rover


Mark
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Hello All,

Some of you may recall that at Billing a couple of years ago there was a competition to win a Toylander Series 1. Some of you may also recall that I won said competition and have finally now got round to building my prize! As such I thought I would share the progress with you as I go along.

Some questions you may be asking:

<You> Why has it taken you over two years from entering the competition to actually start building it???

<Me> I was informed I had won the Toylander around november 2003. I spoke to the esteemed Mr Green at LRE, who promised that he would get my prize to me as soon as possible, and he would call me back in a few days to arrange it. He didn't ring so after a few weeks, I rang back and was told the same thing again.

Guess what? Yep, he didn't ring, so I left it a few weeks... repeat for about 8 months...

Eventually I decided to speak to Richard Shepherd of Real Life Toys directly, and what a difference! Anyway, to save shipping and collection charges and the like I agreed that I would pick the Toylander up from him at a show, namely one at Ringmer, East Sussex. So thats what I did - in august of last year!

Since then it has been my own projects (Moving house, getting new house sorted, etc, etc) that have got in the way, but I finally decided to start work on it!

<You> Why are you building it? I thought the prize was a complete Toylander?

<Me> When I spoke to Mr Shepherd, he explained to me that I had won a shell and all the bits to bolt to it to make a toylander. I explained that I was really looking forward to making it myself, rather than just assembling the metal bits. Richard was more than happy to help out, and supply the shell unassembled and even threw in a couple of the extra options for me, since he didn't have to invest the time in making the Shell - Everyone is happy!

<You>So you are just glueing a set of parts together then?

<Me> Not as such. What I was given was a complete set of CNC Routed MDF panels and all the bits to make the rest of the car. There is still a lot of woodwork to do before you get a working model. The other slightly interesting thing is that there are no build instructions as such. The Series 1 was designed to be supplied as either a set of drawings for you to build the car from scratch, or as a semi-assembled kit. No one had actually assembled the production panels as a kit except for Richard himself. Anyway, it all seems like a big puzzle to me....

<You>So you are some kind of woodworker then???

<Me> No, not really. I am happy working in wood, but happier in metal. As such my techniques are more like a metalworker than a wood worker - Oh and I use a lot of power tools!

So, anyway sorry for the long intro. I spent yesterday (25/09/2005) afternoon glueing and screwing battens onto some of the panels. This is basically the first stage of the build before assembly starts.

This evening (26/09/2005) I got bored with batten work, and wanted to do some assembly of the bits I did yesterday, so I now have the start of the chassis:

Chassis1.jpg

I also started to do the Bulkhead, which involved some routing and chamfering before clamping the two pieces together:

Bulkheadclampedup.jpg

Hopefully I tomorrow I will get the sides battened up and then put them on the chassis later in the week.

Anyway, sorry for the long post, but I hope to keep this updated with the progress of the build.

Cheers

Mark

I meant to add a couple of observations so far:

- The quality of the kit is superb. Having accuratly cut panels makes the whole thing a real joy to work on! I guess I am spoilt...

- The list of tools required as listed in the manual is very modest - basic hand tools,jigsaw, drill, etc. However, the following tools make life a whole lot simpler, and a quality result much easier to achieve:

  • Chop (Mitre) Saw - Makes chopping up the battens neat and square every time
  • Battery Drill with Clutch - Makes getting the screw neat a doddle
  • Bench mounted belt/wheel sander - for cleaning up chopped battens, making adjustments and chamfers and the like!
  • A combined pilot Hole and countersink bit - Doing the battening can get kinda tedious, this makes it just a bit quicker

I will continue to update with my thoughts as I progress

Cheers

Mark

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Did some more to the Toylander today.

Mostly it was more body building, which started of by adding battens to the side panels:

bodyside.JPG

Having done both side panels, they were then added to the tub along with the bulkhead that you saw clamped up above - suddenly we start to have something that looks a bit like a series 1 land rover:

bothsideson.jpg

The back piece was next to be added:

backon.jpg

The rest of the day was taken up building up the inner wings, which I will hopefully add tomorrow This should make the front end look a lot more complete by the end of the day, with the wing tops and fronts.

I also spent a while cleaning and painting the metalwork that will go underneath - axles, braking mechanism and steering components are all supplied in bare metal, so some of them got a good wire brushing and clean before being coated in shiney blak hammerite.

If I get any progress made tomorrow, I will post some more pictures then.

Cheers

Mark

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Spent most of today continuing with the Toylander.

Got the inner wings and the riser panels fitted:

innerwingswithlinerss.JPG

Then fitted the wing tops and fronts:

wingss.jpg

The curves on the front of the wing will be filled by a piece of aluminium rolled to the correct profile, but I have left them off for now as they will need priming and prepping differrently to the rest of the tub.

Then the Chassis Extensions, the front X-Member piece and the front panel went on:

frontpanels.jpg

Next I decided to see how it looked with the bumper on. The bumper didn't really line up with the chassis extensions, so I decided to recess it into the base board to get it nice and flush. As such, I routed out two grooves to accept the bumper mounting arms:

bumpermount1s.jpg

Having done that, the bumper was trial fitted, and the holes drilled. I have bolted it on, but the bolts only have wing nuts on them. They will have Nyloks after final assembly.

bumpermount4s.jpg

Mmmm... Nice and flush with the chassis extensions - just as solihull would have wanted it.

bumpermount2s.jpg

Flushed with the success of mounting the bumper, I decided to trial mount the rest of the metalwork - 2 axles, the braking mechanism and the steering. This involves a lot of work on the bottom of the tub, so it was turned over and supported by a couple of peices of 2x4:

upsidedowns.jpg

The rear axle trial mounted ready for drilling:

rearaxles.jpg

No pictures of the front or the brakes, as they are all pretty similar to the rear axle procedure.

At the end of the day, I got enthusistic, and wanted to see how it would look with the winch fitted... :D

winchs.jpg

I now have the basic tub finished, which means it is time to paint it. At the moment I am planning to paint it in Land Rover Light Green as 1) I think it looks great on early 80" S1s and 2) I have a big tin left over from painting the IIA! I am going to paint the chassis bits black, althought I am tying with the idea of silver for that just galvanised sort of effect... opinions?

The plan at the moment is to brush paint it, cos I don't have the gear to spray it. Anyone want to volunteer thier spraying services? :ph34r:

Cheers

Mark

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Looks good Mark , I've always fancied having a go at one these myself - more chance of me building one of them than a real one :D

The curves on the front of the wing will be filled by a piece of aluminium rolled to the correct profile, but I have left them off for now as they will need priming and prepping differrently to the rest of the tub.

I've never understood why they use metal curves on the wings as they always seem to show up quite badly even on the 'show' models. I think I'd either put a wooden block in and shape it or perhaps use some of the flexible MDF .

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I thought about the flexi-MDF, but I havn't used it, so wasn't sure if I would get a tight enough curve.

Hopefully with proper prep, then the ally shouldn't look any different in the end. Proper etch priming and filling should give a decent result I hope...

Cheers for the feedback - much appreciated!

Thanks

Mark

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I've never understood why they use metal curves on the wings as they always seem to show up quite badly even on the 'show' models. I think I'd either put a wooden block in and shape it or perhaps use some of the flexible MDF .

a coupl of wooden block spaced apart on dowels with a piece of hardboard nailed to it perhaps?

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Mark, Thats a beaut looking job you've made there, & one that, working in a MDF factory, I've long promised myself that I would have a go at, must get those plans some time :D

A suggestion for the wing front, if you can get access to some 3mm MDF ( we make it, so presumably it is available in the UK) laminate several thickness together in the correct curve, glue them up with a waterproof glue & when they're set they will keep their shape. Make up a jig from two bits of board with some dowels or pegs in between to give the correct curvature & the same length as the width of your strips,These can be fixed but having them screwed will make it easier to get the MDF out of the fixture. a smear of vaseline on the side pieces will help things not to stick to the jig. Fit one of the removable dowell pieces( which need to be off set from the line of pegs by the thickness of the finished wing front ie 9mm or 12mm whichever you choose ) & then slip the first strip under it. Make your jig so the the flats are longer then you need to allow to trim to fit. Spread the glue onto this piece & then slip the next bit under the end dowell on top of the first, repeat for the third &/or forth pieces. When you have the strips glued then bend them around your curve & hold them in place with the second removable dowell. You may need to strap some packers around the curvature to keep it tight onto the curve but I don't think so unless you don't allow enough offset for your removable dowells. Quick sketch to make it clearer.

MDFwingjig.jpg

HTH, Cheers, Steve.

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Steve,

Thats really informative, I think I will give that a go! I presume 3mm is available, so I will have a look.... The laminate method has the advantage that the surface is still smooth (as per the rest of the MDF) whereas using a block would leave another surface finish, and would take the paint differently again...

Cheers for the info.

Mark

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Mark flexi MDF will definately give you a tight enough curve, I made some circular speaker boxes for my last 90 that were about 5-6" diameter .The outside edge of flexi MDF is smooth and at only a couple of quid for a small sheet in B&Q might be worth a try anyway. If not how about laminitating a block out of a few peices of (scrap ?) MDF and then shaping that ? which should give a more solid finish.

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Les,

That is a very good point! Does that include the rear cross member?

Another question on really early 80"s - Where would the sidelights be? in the wings, or in the bulkhead?

Cheers

Mark

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OK, last night I had a go at this bending MDF game.

I have made up a jig for the right radius (65mm on the outside face, so an internal Radius of 53mm using 4 sheets of 3mm MDF). I have some photos, bu imagecave dosn't seem to want to play, so I will post them later.

Anyway, I thought I would try a piece to see what happened. The answere is the MDF snapped! So I guess I need some advice on how to make it more flexible! I presume that steaming it is out of the question, as wet MDF has the structural integrity of a pile of sawdust, so what else is open to me?

Cheers

Mark

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You can bend the thinner MDF by cutting grooves on one side, router is the best bet if you have one.Tighter bend more grooves.

Wouldn't recommend wetting it, doesn't wet easily but when it does then it swells and never goes back to original, also looses some of the bonding agent so not so strong as you rightly say.

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OK, Imagecave seems to be working again, so here is the jig I made:

jig1s.jpg

and another angle:

jig3s.jpg

The outer pins are removable. The inner rounded MDF corners are to replicate the blocks already attached to the Toyalnder. As such the piece that i need to produce has the top layer wider than the under neath layers thus:

jig2s.jpg

However, the result of my testing just a single layer on the outer most radius gives this result:

jig4s.jpg

I will give it a go with the back of the mdf grooved, and see if that works...

Would Ply be more flexible? I could build up the bottom layers with ply, and put an MDF face on the top?

Any more ideas?

ta

Mark

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I have been looking at the listings for the S1 kit.

Front wing tops are £7.00 pre formed

Seems better then trying to form them yourself.

Or failing that there is a flexi ply out there.

Could be worth talking to Richard at Real Life Toys (01767 319080), He's a real nice guy

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Dave, I already have the aluminium formed ones... :P:D:lol: I just like to try new things out when I get the chance!

If the MDF route proves to be unsuccessful, I will use the ally... :D

Mark (see the title under my name...;))

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Mark, Sorry to be so long to get back to you, I asked our technical manager at work if he thought 3mm MDF should do the job. The answer was that according to our specs the minimum radius they would guarantee was about 100 mm but it will normally do a lot better than that. It would seem that your radius might well be too tight, to be honest, I had in mind the curve of a full size LR wing, & the pics of the Toylander made it look bigger than your measurements, I've obvoiusly underestimated that, not really thinking that your Toylander is about 1/4(?) scale & thus tighter still, so sorry if I've given your a bum steer. Even the 2.5mm we make might struggle at your figures & I guess every manufacturers product will have slightly different properties. As others have pointed out, wetting it will destroy its properties totally Wish I could suggest something to help,scoring & bending is probably going to leave a series of flats around the curve. One thing that may work to make it more flexible is to heat it a bit, the tech manger said that what you needed was some board straight out of the press. ( We run continuous presses that make 3mm at over 40metre/minute) It might be worth trying to heat it to about 100 C in the oven & see if that works, but the board moisture might drop too low & make it brittle still. Take care not to set it on fire ( it burns well & stinks like hell when it does :D ) Other than that I'm embarrassed to say you're on your own, such a lot of work in the beautifully crafted jig too. My rough sketch did not deserve such fine craftsmanship. :(

Cheers, Steve.

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