Construction for the
Lunar Models/Masterpiece Time Machine
Rear lamp cage
By M.S. Bleasby

Compleated Rear Lamp Cage


Photo No 1

You need "tinned copper wire" for the construction of the Rear lamp cage because it will be soldered together. Before assembly, it is important to obtain a set of "Helping Hands." This device consists of a magnifying glass and two alligator clips connected by ball and socket joints. This "tool" is essential for the completion of this project. The gauge of the wire measures just under 1mm (approx 0.84mm ).

The tinned copper wire comes on a reel and it is necessary to stretch the wire by placing one end in a vice and pulling the other end with a pair of pliers. (See Photo No 1) At this point you will need to cut enough wire for the inner rings (three of them) and the outer cage sides.

Lower Ring

Photo No 2
This ring measures about 6mm.Use this diagram seen here (This drawing is provided by Martin Bleasby and was created on a computer using a C.A.D. program) Using these drawings as a pattern you will need to bend the wire around an object in order to obtain the proper size dimensions, for this a 5mm drill bit was used. This allowed for the width of the wire and thus it came out to around 6mm when the wire was removed from the drill bit. (See Photo No 2)

Centre and Upper Rings

This ring measures about 14mm and the builder will have to find a suitable round section, which measures about 13mm. The same applies for the upper ring which measures around 12.65mm, again a 12mm round section would be ok for this ring.
(See Photo No 2)
After the rings have been bent to shape it will be necessary to cut the excess wire away, using a pair of side cutters. As you can see in (Photo No 2) the rings are in a coil section and when this excess wire is removed it will be necessary to shape the rings with a pair of pliers to ensure that they lay flat. After this they can be soldered, using a standard soldering iron. (Photo No 3 shows the ring prior to soldering)

Cage Framework

Bend the cage frameworks over the drawings. It is necessary to have some sort of pattern to bend the side pieces of the cage also (drawing provided) match the scale of the Lunar Model's Time Machine. Use a small pair of pliers and your fingers to bend the cage sides to get the final adjustments (See Photo No 3).
Here is where the Helping Hands comes in on the construction process. Photo No 4 shows how the Helping Hands tool is used. The cage assembly is started, by holding the lower ring in place. You can then attach the cage sides and the centre ring. After this is done there is some support to the cage. You will need to trim off the cross over section of excess wire at the top of the cage in order to attach the rest of the cage sides. (See Photo No 4)

Photo No 4
Photo No 5 shows the cage under construction, with all the inner rings in place and four of the cage sides attached. It's a good idea when soldering the wires not to keep the iron on too long, as the work will get very hot! It is necessary to achieve a good solder joint but you will have to make sure you don't undo any work you have already done by keeping the iron on the job too long. You may find the alligator clip acts as a heat shunt and thus requires the iron to be on the work longer.

Photo No 5

Photo No 6

Photo No 10
The insulator, which the cage rests on, is the standard part from the Lunar kit. (See Photo No 10) I cleaned up this resin part with a small file and some sandpaper, after which this was primed and painted with a Red gloss Enamel paint.

Final Assembly

Photo No 12
Clean up excess solder on the joints of the cage with a small needle file, making sure to remove as much of the solder residue from around all the joints as possible without destroying the bond. It is necessary to give some rough texture that gives key or tooth to the surface of the copper wire prior to paint spraying in order that the paint remains on the surface. I used the small needle file to do this along with some sandpaper.

Photo No 11

After you are happy with the surface of the cage, degrease the surface with acetone and then spray the cage with 18ct gold spray paint by Krylon. This gives a nice bright gold effect to the cage. After the paint is dry, attach the resin bulb and then finally fix the cage to the insulator with some two-part Epoxy glue.

M.S. Bleasby


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The Time Machine Project 1998 Don Coleman
Web Site 1999 Don Coleman
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