Thread: Earth Tectonics
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Old 07-01-2011, 08:40 AM
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Earth Tectonics

Now that I finished the RAF Se5a, I feel I can move into another model. To avoid repetition I don’t want to build two consecutive planes, and since I like some variety in my models this one fits perfectly.

The Earth Tectonics model is designed by Chuck Clark. You can find it in his interesting website: Tectonics cut’n’fold, Maybe world maps with constant-scale natural boundaries

I became aware of this model last year, and it has been in my mind since. It looks very interesting and complex as well so I was avoiding it until I felt I could face it.

Last year however I did assemble the somehow similar “Foldable Phobos”, also available in Chuck’s website. The big difference is that Phobos is just a cut-fold-and-glue model that sits static, while this Earth Tectonics model is designed to move, representing the movement of each tectonic plate as it is in reality, so even though the model is just one piece, there is a big complexity involved.

Now the time has come to start this once and for all. I have no doubts that this will teach me something new. And you know may saying: every model I build is a good practice for the next model that will come later. This will be an interesting challenge

The model is available as one big jpg image measuring 14.37 X 11 inches (almost double letter size) at 300 dpi. So the quality is good. Although evidently based on maps using modern technology, most of the details look drawn by hand, but that’s not bad since it gives the model particular charm that is delightful to see.

For this model I went to a printer and had the image plotted at 19X27 inches (70X50 cms), much bigger than its original size. I opted for this size since I thought that making it small would render it quite difficult to handle. And making it too big would have the same effect. At this size the distance from pole to pole on the surface is about 11 inches (29 cms approx.) So I expect the final diameter of the model to be near 7 inches (18 cms).

The paper used is “calcio” (“calcium”) I don’t know if that reference is available in other countries. It’s a very white and porous (hence, matte) paper that gives very bright colours and dries fast. Its weight (so I was told) is120 gsm.

It was printed on a “HP - Designjet 130” printer with continuous injection system. I tested the print and it is water-proof, and also alcohol-proof. So I don’t fear any ink smears or ugly accidents in case something wet touches the paper.

In the first photo you can see the printed model with a 30 cms (12 inches) plastic square as reference for size.

I will start by cutting leaving a good space off the borders, and by glueing together what is supposed to be together, like some gaps in Antarctica and the Pacific Ocean (and other parts as well) that appear in the model because of the way the Earth surface must be flattened to 2 dimensions. Chuck gives a good reference map of the tectonics to use as a guide in the same page where this model is available.

I know not how difficult this will be, or when will I finish it. But I really don’t care as long as it gives me a pleasant modeling time!
Attached Thumbnails
Earth Tectonics-earth_001.jpg   Earth Tectonics-earth_002.jpg   Earth Tectonics-earth_003.jpg  
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Rubén Andrés Martínez A.

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