Front Suspension, brake and Steering Handle
|Even though the chain was done, there were still a lot more to do. The front suspension, and steering handle was made from various materials.|
||I started with the four horizontal
links. This is a design feature of the recent Moulton bicycles, and
I had to do it right.
I attached the evergreen plastic pipe to the lathe, and thinned the center part as shown.
||Then, I cut and trimmed both ends to finish the links.
(However, these parts were never used at the end, because it looked too fat.)
|The next task was to make the
wheel hub mount at the bottom of the carbon fiber suspension rods.
To make two identical parts, first draw the design on a plastic sheet, and roughly cut to the desired shape, while leaving a tab for spot gluing.
Then, spot glue the part on a sheet plastic with super glue, and use needle files to make the final shape.
Finally, insert a knife carefully to separate the two parts, and cut the excess area.
The suspension part is mainly composed of two carbon fiber rods, a hub, hub mounts, and horizontal members (don't know what it's called).
Four horizontal member were made of a laminar plastic sheet. There are two at the top of the steering columns, and two more at the suspension rods.
The carbon fiber suspension rods are tapered, and without a quality lathe, it's very hard to make one. So, I used a "beam saber" of a Gundam model, and I wrapped it with Scale Motorsport Carbon Fiber decal.
|There is an adjustable dumper
locking mechanism, which looks like an inverted V with a ball. Usually, it's tilted forward, but the
ball can be placed at the top of a cylinder, which is connected to the
lower horizontal member on the steering shaft.
I made the inverted V with a metal rod as shown. Then, I encountered a problem. I made the mount with plastic, but it was not strong enough to hold the metal piece. So, I used a metal sheet instead, and it worked well.
The lower front horizontal member was made from plastic sheet, and the locking mechanism was attached as shown.
Here is an in-progress picture of the front suspension.
Two horizontal members can be seen at the top and bottom of the steering column, and they are free to turn.
Another two members are attached to the carbon fiber rods, and those members are connected with four links.
|As I mentioned, I didn't use the four links I made earlier, because it looked too big in diameter for its length. So, I made another set, using a slightly smaller rod. In both pictures below, the forward one is the new link, and the one on the cutting board is the old one.|
|The brake is composed of three
parts, right arm, left arm and pivot base, and they looked complicated,
because of their shapes. It took me a little thinking of how to make
Basically, I tried to find the plane of reference, then I added another layer to thicken the piece, using the cross section as a template. After that, I filed the parts to the desired shape.
||The handle bar was made from plastic pipe. I applied candle heat to band it like the photo. In order to create the texture, I used Modeler's Interior Spray - black.|
||Gear change lever was made from
a piece of plastic, which is glued to a plastic rod. I made a rough shape,
then I welded the piece to the rod firmly, using liquid cement.
Finally, I applied glue to reinforce the bond. Superglue also worked as putty.
Then, I filed it to the desired shape as shown in the picture.
|The brake lever is made of plastic sheet as well. I made the center piece with 1.0 mm thick
sheet, and I sandwiched it with 0.3 mm thick pieces, then I rounded the
I added two small pieces at the front, where the rivet is located, then I made the end of the handle with a piece of plastic rod. For the rivet, I used a similar piece I found in one of Kotobukiya's detail sets.
In many cases, I try to find a section cut, and start from there. Most of the small and thin parts can be made the same way.