Author Topic: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.  (Read 6255 times)

Offline Frank3k

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Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« on: May 29, 2016, 04:31:13 AM »
This is the first of the two Frank R. Paul covers that I did last week. This may be one of the first, if not the first depictions of a flying saucer on a magazine cover (November, 1929):

1929_11_sciencewonder_paul_cv by Paul Fer, on Flickr

Frank R. Paul had training as a draftsman, so this drawing in particular was fairly easy to reproduce. I however, do not have training as a draftsman, so my copy isn't as accurate. Here's an approximate match (rotated about 90 degrees, as seen by the three covered portholes):



The central red section may be shallower than on the drawing, although it matches the "French" saucer in the background pretty well.

Here's a side view:



I made the model in four parts to make it easier to paint. The red warning is just letting me know that the model has four unattached pieces:



The printed model will be about 127mm (5") in diameter. I was going to make a 3D model of the Woolworth building, but I found models of the Chrysler building and the Eiffel Tower that were roughly in scale with the saucer, so I bought those instead. I'll have to figure out a way of making the tentacles.

Offline Weaver

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2016, 05:08:37 AM »
Nice job!

A few observations, by way of constructive criticism if i may?

1. I'll be the first to admit it's subjective, but my feeling is that the angle of the red ring is steeper than that of the yellow disc. The yellow disc is very shallow, but the upper and lower parts of the red ring meet at something like 45 degrees.

2. From the differing angles between them, I think there are seven groups of four portholes, not eight.

3. There are definately ten yellow 'orbs' in the black ring around the dish, not eight.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2016, 05:12:29 AM by Weaver »
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

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Offline Frank3k

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2016, 05:52:43 AM »
Haqrold, thanks for the criticisms.

 
1. I'll be the first to admit it's subjective, but my feeling is that the angle of the red ring is steeper than that of the yellow disc. The yellow disc is very shallow, but the upper and lower parts of the red ring meet at something like 45 degrees.

It's 30-35 degrees (or 145 degrees or so from the other side). I have a smooth curve and will correct the angle.

 
2. From the differing angles between them, I think there are seven groups of four portholes, not eight.

It looks like 7, but I think it's actually 8. The two sets at the extreme diameters and three (or 6 total) in between. The Gernsback shield is hiding one porthole at the top.

3. There are definately ten yellow 'orbs' in the black ring around the dish, not eight.
[/quote]

I miscounted  - there are definitely 10. I'll fix it as well.

Offline Weaver

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2016, 06:26:59 AM »
Correcting the angle of the red ring will also make the saucer usefully thicker too.

Re the portholes:

I don't think the Gernsback shield is covering one. I think the 'missing' one from that set is on the other end of the group, out of sight around the curvature of the disc. This would mean that if the disc was a clock face with the nearest group at 3 o'clock, the top group with the missing porthole would be at 11 o'clock, not 12. If the angle between the 11 o'clock group and the 6 o'clock group only contains three other groups in 210 degrees, that implies that the angle between them is about 52 degrees. 360 divided by 52 is 6.923 or near enough 7, given that the spacing doesn't appear to be entirely even.

Having said all that, since the spacing is clearly uneven, there could be literally any number of portholes on the other side of the craft, so I wouldn't get too hung up about it either way. Your model is still going to look good whatever you choose.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2016, 06:30:35 AM by Weaver »
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

"I'm a general specialist," - Harry Purvis in Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Twitter: @hws5mp
Minds.com: @HaroldWeaverSmith

Offline Frank3k

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2016, 09:16:03 AM »
Thanks for your help, Harold.

I made a 7 and 8 port version and tried to match the cover orientation. The lack of uneven spacing on the artwork doesn't help:

7 port version. I couldn't find a rotation that showed five ports clearly:


8 port version. It's easier with the 8 port:


Deep dish pizza saucer with corrected dish:


The upper saucer dome with the tentacle shooters looks too low on my version, but I compared it with the cover drawing and the curves and diameters match. I may have it too low in the saucer, which would be easy to fix.

Offline Weaver

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2016, 03:50:55 PM »
Nice experimental step. :)

I think that uneven spacing is the fundamental problem. I remain convinced that the top and bottom groups of portholes are at 11 o'clock and 6 o'clock respectively, but the other three visible groups are clearly bunched up rather than evenly spaced. However, since one group has three covered portholes that are clearly different to all the others, the craft is definately NOT symetrical, so what's happening on the other side will always be a matter of speculation. My feeling is that there are two groups of four portholes around there, for a total of seven, but there's no way of 'proving' that.

Re the tentacle dome, looking at the picture again, I get the impression that the hole in the yellow disc is actually bigger than the dome, and that the latter sits inside it at such a height that if you looked at it edge-on, about half the diameter of the yellow dots around it's edge would be visible. This is why it the dome looks taller in the pic than in your model: in the former, you're looking down 'into the hole' it sits in so you're seeing more of it's height.
"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

"I'm a general specialist," - Harry Purvis in Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Twitter: @hws5mp
Minds.com: @HaroldWeaverSmith

Offline Weaver

  • Skyhawk stealer and violator of Panthers, with designs on a Cougar and a Tiger too
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"I have described nothing but what I saw myself, or learned from others" - Thucydides

"I've jazzed mine up a bit" - Spike Milligan

"I'm a general specialist," - Harry Purvis in Tales from the White Hart by Arthur C. Clarke

Twitter: @hws5mp
Minds.com: @HaroldWeaverSmith

Offline Frank3k

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2016, 12:29:12 AM »

Re the tentacle dome, looking at the picture again, I get the impression that the hole in the yellow disc is actually bigger than the dome, and that the latter sits inside it at such a height that if you looked at it edge-on, about half the diameter of the yellow dots around it's edge would be visible. This is why it the dome looks taller in the pic than in your model: in the former, you're looking down 'into the hole' it sits in so you're seeing more of it's height.

I agree - I measured the various ellipses and used those ratios to create the parts of the saucer. My model has a gap/canyon between the edge of the yellow dish and the red dome. Here's a zoomed view to see the details. Edge view:


canyon view:


I think the main issue with the tentacle dome are the shooters. They are not quite the same size around the dome. If I made them match one size, they would be too big and touch the ring of yellow dots. The spheres on each side vary in size as well. I just picked a size that matched the drawing adequately. The cover artwork isn't a dimensioned technical drawing, so it's hard to get a good grip on the various parts. The porthole covers were difficult as well. They were partly a compromise with the 3D printing requirements.

Offline Frank3k

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2016, 10:10:48 AM »
After many failed attempts by Shapeways to print the saucer (luckily at no cost to me), I was able to make a printable version by adding intternal supports to the saucer:



The only new parts are the saucer and the central dish. The saucer has some surface artifacts caused by the printing support as well as some slight oil canning caused by the thin walls. The effect is actually very light and it will mostly vanish after some sanding and a coat of paint.


Roughly put together.


I didn't feel like designing a scale Woolworth's building, so I compromised and found a Chrysler building in approximately the same scale, as well as an Eiffel tower in the same scale:




Offline Brian da Basher

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2016, 04:24:53 AM »
Wow does that look fantastic, Frank!

Mega-kudos on figuring out a work-around! I have a feeling this one is going to be especially nice.

Brian da Basher

Offline Buzzbomb

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #10 on: July 27, 2016, 08:25:14 AM »
Go for it Frank, I am loving your 3d work

Offline Frank3k

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #11 on: July 27, 2016, 10:20:39 AM »
Thanks for the comments! It will take some effort to clean up the saucer, but I think it will be cool to have a 3D version of that almost 87 year old cover.

Offline Dr. YoKai

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2016, 11:32:41 PM »
Magnificent. Can't wait to see it with the building clutched in its tentacles!

Offline taiidantomcat

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Re: Flying Saucer by Frank R. Paul.
« Reply #13 on: August 03, 2016, 09:32:23 PM »
That is incredible!  :o Great design work  :)
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