Friday, September 9, 2011

OGRE, Unger, Segues, Down

I don't know what made me think of Steve Jackson's OGRE miniature game, but it is the impetus for this new blog. I pulled out my box of OGRE minis, and looked them over. All of the tanks were assembled and primed. They will be painted once I determine the color scheme I like. Even though these OGREs are 1/285th scale, they are large and heavy, coming in two pieces. I guess the designer intended the two to be super glued together, but that is a joint doomed to fail. I wanted someway to keep them firmly connected during play, but with a joint that had some flex to deal with 3-D terrain. Let me think, now what could allow me to make such a joint. Hmmmm, could it be................Satan, er, I mean magnets? Yeah, magnets. (Like you didn't see that coming.)

This is an OGRE Mk-V, it's six long guns yet to be installed. You can see how fragile the joint is between the front and rear. (Yeah, that dimple will really help.) 

I started by filing that dimple off and drilling a hole in the tab to fit the 1/8th" diameter magnet. (It's 1/16th" thick.) When drilling metal or plastic, I like to start with a small bit and sneak up to the final size, especially when there will be such a small margin of material left around the hole. I used four bits to do my sneaking.

I pushed the magnet in from the bottom and used thickened CA to secure it.

The section where the other magnet would go was pretty thin. I was barely able to get to the 1/8th" diameter before going through the other side. Basically, all I had was the cone shape of the tip of the bit. This would not secure the magnet. I took a high-speed cutter in my Dremel, and flattened the hole.

Even so, the hole was not very deep. You can see how much of the magnet protrudes. Oh wait a minute, look at the other magnet, it's recessed. That recess captures the upper magnet, creating a perfect pivot point. Don't you just love it when problems work themselves out on their own?

The completed joint. There is a lot of play in it, yet it is firmly connected.

This is the Mk-VI variant. It went together essentially the same as the first one,  though I had to use the Dremel to cut some material around the upper magnet.

Here it is, the largest OGRE produced to date. There are record sheets already for a larger Mk-VII OGRE, but who knows if or when Steve Jackson will make it. Hmmmm, that might make a nice scratchbuilding project.

This is the Mk-IV, and it required the most work of the OGREs. I started with this piece of styrene to hold the magnet and attach to the front unit.

This is the piece cut and filed to fit the slot in the back end. You can see how I had to file the bottom of it, as well as the top of the front end's piece, so they would clear each other.

It was a tight fit, but I secured it with CA anyway.

The Mk-IV ready for paint and its two long cannons installed.

I should mention here that OGREs are the weapons of the side known as the Combine, basically North America and Great Britain. This following super-tank is a Fencer, the OGRE-equivalent of the side known as the Paneuropeans. (Guess where they're from.) The fencer has a choice of two main turrets, and with a few magnets are easily interchangeable.

Fortunately, to simplify painting, I hadn't yet glued the top half of the rear section to the bottom. This really worked to my advantage. You can see how weak the intended joint would be. I started by cutting a piece of styrene to fit behind the cut-out in the bottom rear, and installed a magnet.

I was afraid there wouldn't be enough glue surface to firmly hold it, so I cut another to fit flat to the tops of the treads. Then the piece with the magnet will glue to the top of it.

I trimmed some solid rod to fit the models stub, then glued a magnet on. Before attaching it to the model, I used some pliers to bend the stub down so the assembly would be level.

I had to pull out the Dremel again to enlarge the U-shaped trough to allow more movement.

The rear top in place but not yet glued down.

This is the Paneuropean's behemoth, the Doppelsoldner. This joint is incredibly strong. In fact, you can pick up the whole model holding only one side or the other without them even being glued. It's those ribs with the interlocking grooved recesses.  But remember, I was looking for firm and flexible. So first I made this magnet holder out of styrene strip.

I glued the magnet on to the front connector, and to allow some play in the joint, I filed off two of its ribs. I also had to file off one rib from each of the rear connectors.

Almost ready to kick some OGRE butt.

I'm pretty close to picking a paint scheme, so the next time you see these bad boys, they should be a lot more colorful. See you then. Oh, did anyone get the title of this post?   Don

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