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Thread: Building a 1966 BATMOBILE for 8 inch MEGO Batman

  1. #21
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    Oh, I'm quite familiar with that website. Most of my research while investigating details of the car came from there.

    As for selling copies of the car I'm developing, I'm afraid that won't be happening.

    You see, this is a one-off project. I've already sunk several thousand (over the last 7 years) just to develop the rough prototype that I have, and I'll likely have to invest another couple of thousand more before I have the final finished toy car.

    I simply do not have the resources to make multiple molds of the final toy car (or my rough prototype) and cast copies for sale.

    Only one mold (of the perfected prototype) is going to be made, and it will (unfortunately) be destroyed in the casting process of the final toy.
    Last edited by darklord1967; Jul 14, '08 at 2:26 AM.
    I... am an action figure customizer

  2. #22
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    Alright, no more teases.

    Since you've all been such good boys and girls (and since I was able to accelerate my photography timetable), the photos of my rough Batmobile prototype will be posted right here, in this thread LATER TONIGHT (7/14/08).

    You will NOT have to wait until Friday (as I previously thought).

    Tune in TONIGHT starting at about 10:00 PM EST...
    I... am an action figure customizer

  3. #23
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    I am so going to be here. . .at that Bat Time. . . This Bat Channel!

  4. #24
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    Wow - Sounds pretty impressive. Your creation will be worshipped...

    OK, everyone get ready to kneel.

    david_b
    Peace.. Through Superior Firepower.

  5. #25
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    Greetings gang.

    I got in a little late tonight, so the pics I promised to post will be up a little later than I had hoped.

    I am downloading the images to a web host now. They will be posted here TONIGHT for all to see.

    I promise.

    Thank you for your patience. Please stay tuned...
    I... am an action figure customizer

  6. #26
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    I decided that my best plan for creating an accurately MEGO-scaled and detailed Batmobile toy was to find a Lincoln Futura toy replica (hopefully in the right size), and customize it into the Caped Crusader’s ride.

    Unfortunately, an extensive search in the world of toy cars turned up nothing. No appropriately-sized Lincoln Futura toys. Darn!

    However, I did find the 1995 re-issue of the 1/25th scale Revel Monogram Lincoln Futura model kit (originally produced in 1956).






    This was a beautiful kit with extremely accurate sculpting. The body was nice and, long and sleek, and the fine detail was superb.











    Now this model would have been the PERFECT starting point for a very accurate MEGO-scaled Batmobile… if it had been in the correct size.

    As part of my research, I learned that the actual Lincoln Futura showcar was 225 inches in length.

    At 1/25th scale, this model kit was just a hair over 9 inches in length. Not exactly appropriate for an 8 inch MEGO Batman to drive around in!











    Now, the scale-conversion math on this project was pretty straight forward: 8 inch MEGO (heroic male) figures exist in a 1:9 scale.

    When calculated out, it works like this: 8 inches X 9 scale conversion = 72 inches of real-life height. So an 8 inch heroic MEGO male equals a 72 inch (6 ft.) tall man.

    It works out perfectly. Superman’s height is officially identified as 6’4”. And although Bruce Wayne’s height is officially listed as 6’2”, allowances can be made for an additional two inches in The Batman’s height due to his thick (combat) boot soles and his cowl.

    It should also be pointed out that nude MEGO type II bodies measure in at exactly 7.75 inches. Converted at 1:9 scale, that translates to a real life man between 5 foot 9" and 5 foot 10" in height.

    This 1 : 9 scale, then, must also be employed to determine the correct size of the custom Batmobile toy. So working backward: 225 inches in length (of the actual real-life car) divided by 9 (MEGO scale) equals a toy car that is 25 inches in length. That’s virtually TWICE as long as MEGO’s 1974 Batmobile toy!

    Alright. Enough research! Enough calculations! Time to get to work building this big toy!
    Last edited by darklord1967; Jun 8, '15 at 3:06 PM.
    I... am an action figure customizer

  7. #27
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    I spent the next couple of weeks converting the small Revel Monogram Lincoln Futura model kit into the ’66 Batmobile I was so familiar with. Admittedly, this was not as easy to do as I had hoped, but it wasn’t impossible either. Just as George Barris had done on the actual Lincoln Futura, I radiused the wheel wells and used a Dremel to open them up.









    I also wanted my final MEGO-Scaled Batmobile Toy to have separate seats in the cockpit. Since this model kit came with a full cockpit tub with seats that were molded in place, it became necessary to carefully cut them out.






    With the seats cut out, I fabricated a new backing wall for the interior tub with white sheet styrene.





    With some careful sheet styrene work and squadron putty I converted the Lincoln Futura model into the Batmobile’s basic profile with the flared fenders and wheel openings. I scalloped the tail fins, and extended them into the doors.




    With the Bat-customization of the model kit completed, the next order of business became figuring out a way to convert the small 9 inch model into a correctly-sized 25 inch long car for my 8 inch scaled MEGO Batman and Robin. Easier said than done… especially back in 2001…
    Last edited by darklord1967; Aug 28, '16 at 12:44 PM.
    I... am an action figure customizer

  8. #28
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    I knew that creating re-sized toys off of smaller or larger prototypes was pretty common in the world of toy manufacturing.

    I had heard of pantographing, the process by where a mechanical senor arm ran along the full surface of a prototype model reading every detail, while a linked sculpting arm sculpted a copy of those details in a new size in hard clay.

    I had also learned about stereolithography. This was the system that consisted of an Ultra-Violet Laser, and a vat of photo-curable liquid resin.

    A platform was lowered into the resin (via an elevator system), such that the surface of the platform was a layer-thickness below the surface of the resin. The laser beam then traced the boundaries and filled in a two-dimensional cross section of the model, solidifying the resin wherever it touched. Once a layer was completed, the platform descended a layer thickness, resin flowed over the first layer, and the next layer was built. This process continued until the model was completed.

    The model is then removed from the platform, washed of excess resin, and then placed in a UV oven for a final curing.

    The trouble was, both of these procedures were incredibly cost-prohibitive for a simple MEGO toy customizer from Brooklyn. We’re talking upwards of $15,000 - $35,000, (depending on which procedure was employed and what size the final prototype was intended to be).

    At those prices, things certainly did NOT look good for the future of my customized MEGO Batmobile.

    But then, as luck would have it, I came across an experimental new prototyping process that was used by a rapid prototyping company in Salt Lake City, UT. This process promised to be far more affordable and gave my Batmobile project all new life!

    3-D Printing: was a relatively new concept in 3-D prototyping. The concept behind it was that a model would be fully laser-scanned and re-created as a 3-D CAD file on computer. That file could then be used to run a revolutionary new printer that would actually create prototype white polyurethane parts by making them entirely out of flat cross-sections BONDED together.

    Think of it as creating an entire salami out of hundreds of individual slices.

    The process was expensive, but far more affordable than the other two commonly used prototyping procedures. The reason for this was because the finished 3-D printed parts ended up with a rough texture that required hand finishing / smoothing. The good news was that these polyurethane parts were fully sandable and could be made glass-smooth with a reasonable amount of effort.

    Back in business, baby! Back in BUSINESS!!

    I sent my bat-converted Lincoln Futura model kit to Salt Lake City to be 3D scanned. And waited anxiously for the scaled-up parts to be created, packaged and shipped to me. That was probably LONGEST 4 months of my life.

    My MEGO helper / assistant and I passed the time gathering up parts that we intended to use for the Batmobile’s construction.

    Here he is on the day some temporary wheels and rubber racing tires arrived for the car.





    Finally, the package arrived, and when I saw the newly-sized Batmobile parts, I was thrilled beyond words!


















    When assembled together, the scaled-up Batmobile parts became a beautiful prototype of the Batman’s ride in perfect MEGO scale… FINALLY!!!!!!







    My MEGO assistant and I wasted no time! He immediately began to pose in and around the car to double check the scale accuracy (he’s such a ham). But my inner geek nearly cried from joy! This was going to be an incredible custom toy!!












    As expected, the parts needed some smoothing and finish-sanding, but it would be far less than I expected. And some of the car’s simpler flat shapes could very easily be reproduced in sheet styrene (such as I have begun to do with the lower rocker panels of the body)









    The size comparison of this rough prototype next to MEGO’s 1974 Batmobile was more startling than even I expected.







    Now that I had the scaled-up parts, the next order of business was to come up with a construction PLAN. Organization is everything in a project of this magnitude.

    Since I planned for this toy to feature working lights, I realized that I would need to build this car from the inside – out so that I could effectively conceal all the electronic wiring. First I would build the fully-detailed cockpit tub (featuring velvet “carpeted” floor, plush seats, Bat-phone and electronic dashboard). Next I would tackle the chassis / drivetrain / steering assembly (most likely kit-bashed and adapted from an RC car). Then lastly, I would assemble, detail and paint the main car body with working doors.

    Will Roberto succeed in his Batmobile construction plans? Will he make it all the way through without breaking the bank? Will Roberto's custom MEGO Batman and Robin cruise in ultimate sytle?

    Tune in next time! Same Bat-Time, Same Bat Channel !
    Last edited by darklord1967; Feb 24, '16 at 5:49 PM.
    I... am an action figure customizer

  9. #29
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    Bat

    Wow! That's a pretty serious undertaking. I can't wait to see it finished!
    "Do you believe, you believe in magic?
    'Cos I believe, I believe that I do,
    Yes, I can see I believe that it's magic
    If your mission is magic your love will shine true."

  10. #30
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    OH MY ... that is AWESOME!!!!!!!!

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