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Old 01-31-2011, 10:17 PM
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Rubenandres77 Rubenandres77 is offline
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Browsing through some files, I found I had never shared this building.

I actually finished this on November 1st, 2010.
But for some reason never shared it here (or anywhere).

The reason I didn't share was because I was waiting to assemble the tectonics and publish the two building threads at the same time. But I never printed the tectonics, and Phobos remained archived.

I will surely build the tectonics.... It's something I'm eager to do. Once I figure the best size. Letter is too small. And even double letter could be difficult.
I still want to be the second person in the world to build the tectonics model (unless someone runs faster than me ).


This is the foldable map of Phobos, the Martian moon, by Chuck Clark, as found at:
DLR foldable Phobos 2010 world maps with constant-scale natural boundaries
You can download it for free. It's a JPG image that fits well on a letter-size sheet.

As usual with most of my builds:
Laser printed on 160 gr white cardstock.

Despite being only 1 piece, the kit is not as simple as it may look at first sight.
It took me a couple of days to finish it the way I wanted.

(edit: I now remember why it took me so long: I started building this the next day after my surgery. I was all dizzy and in pain. So don't take my word regarding the difficulty or time to build this model. In normal situations it may be easier and faster. Maybe that was also the reason for my mistakes.)

Printed model:

Cut, following the lines.

Lots of joining strips (I think it was 112 strips).

Strips attached:

A look from behind:

Half of the moon:



Every time it gets more difficult to glue and close.

The model is very interesting. It is pure joy to see how the moon is taking shape.

Not to mention the high educative value of the model.

The easy part: just glue the adjacent borders. You can never go wrong with only one piece.
The hard part: there are valleys, mountains, and craters. Sometimes you need to push the cardstock a bit inside or outside to get the proper shape. References may help.

If you would like to have a nice time building this, provide yourself with lots of patience. It may be trickier than it looks.
Also: printing bigger and in a thin (normal) paper may also help a lot. I had some hard times with the 160 gr cardstock.

The final model:
Printing at letter size, the final model is roughly 12 cms in its longest axis.
Fits in the palm of the hand.

Next: photos of the finished model.
Rubén Andrés Martínez A.

Last edited by Rubenandres77; 01-31-2011 at 10:44 PM.
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Old 01-31-2011, 10:19 PM
Rubenandres77's Avatar
Rubenandres77 Rubenandres77 is offline
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Photos of the finished Phobos:
Attached Thumbnails
Phobos-fobos_10.jpg   Phobos-fobos_11.jpg   Phobos-fobos_12.jpg   Phobos-fobos_13.jpg   Phobos-fobos_14.jpg  

Rubén Andrés Martínez A.

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Old 01-31-2011, 10:20 PM
Rubenandres77's Avatar
Rubenandres77 Rubenandres77 is offline
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And the last photos:
Attached Thumbnails
Phobos-fobos_16.jpg   Phobos-fobos_17.jpg   Phobos-fobos_18.jpg   Phobos-fobos_19.jpg   Phobos-fobos_20.jpg  

Rubén Andrés Martínez A.

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Old 01-31-2011, 10:27 PM
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bagpiper bagpiper is offline
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Interesting little build. Thanks for sharing this one. I like these kinds of builds.
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Old 02-01-2011, 06:56 AM
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dhanners dhanners is offline
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Good looking model and you're right; those things aren't easy. I've found when building them that it helps to pre-curve all the edges before gluing. Ball bearings work just fine; just lay the cut-out model face-down on a computer mouse pad and roll over all the edges with the ball bearing, inducing a curve into them.

For the attachment strips on mine, I used disks cut with a paper punch. They work just fine and you can make a bunch really fast.

And you're right in that with these models, going with a thinner paper generally makes for an easier build, although "easier" is a relative term here.
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Old 02-01-2011, 02:55 PM
rightbasicbuilding rightbasicbuilding is offline
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Hey Ruben Andres!
Nice job. Glad to that whatever your surgery was you seem to have recovered.
Your trick of cutting the paper without leaving tabs -- and gluing on separate pieces -- is a new trick. But perhaps common for Papermodelers? Or maybe, because you used card stock, it works well to use a thinner material for tabs?

Here is another way to put together, with tabs cut out on the original piece of paper:
Phobos arts and crafts - The Planetary Society Blog | The Planetary Society

I suggest if you try the Earth tectonics (and definitely go with thin paper) that you leave tabs as you go. I've indicated some of them -- the orange thingies around the edge; they should interweave with each other as you put it together. This assembles the mid-ocean ridge, where sea floor spreading occurs.
Other portions of the ocean pieces join to form so-called"subducting" trenches. If you take a look at my attempt (second link below) you'll see that in at least one place I was able to finagle the joinery to fashion something that looks like a deep trench (exaggerated in scale, of course). With a bit more care and attention, and I'm sure a few trials-and-errors, this could possibly be done with all of the trenches.

Here's a link directly to the map:
and this is the post as a whole:

I have in mind, if I ever get around to making another one, of keeping track of the specific shapes of the tabs and thereby refine them, bulging out their ends and narrowing their necks so that, when interwoven, they'll lock loosely into place on their own accord. Neck to neck, so to speak, with their bulbous ends giving a little in-and-out freedom of movement without coming undone.
This tactile action, if it could be achieved, would be akin to what actually happens at the mid-ocean ridges, where the crust is thinnest, and new surface if upwelling along the ridge itself. So would be fun to model in a paper globe.

As for the parts where continents assemble, I would experiment with different combinations of tabs. The joints are mountains ridges and various sorts of faults Continental material is much thicker (and colder) than ocean crust, heterogeneous, and cracked and fractured in all kinds of ways. I tried, on the one I put together, a few with mating tabs: tabs are left on both sides of the joint, both tabs are bent inwards, and then their faces are glued, This way an interior "slab" of mountain, or throat of volcano, can be fabricated, both adding realism (it creates almost as a byproduct, a ridge on the globe. exaggerated in scale, of course) and, because it acts like a little T-beam, stiffness to the globe.

Some faults exhibit side-to-side movement; there is surely a way to engineer the paper joint to mimic this type of action as well. There are little half arrows that show direction to this movement. Sorry not to have designed the layout to put all the major continental tectonic features at the map edge, but it would have made a much tougher assembly, and Indonesia, not to mention the Andes-Rockies chain, are pretty good challenges.

And by the way, the big green arrows indicate the overall relative motion of that particular chunk of continent. Not sure if that can be modeled in this layout, but perhaps toyed with cumulatively through a properly assembled (as I describe above) mid-ocean ridge.

Keep me posted.

Small world -- my son is spending the month in Colombia, training at altitude for cycling. In Cali, if my memory serves.

Last edited by rightbasicbuilding; 02-01-2011 at 03:18 PM.
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Old 02-01-2011, 06:44 PM
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Swampfox Swampfox is offline
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I saw the title and I thought....... this couldn't be..could it??

I use to work in the US Geological Survey office in Flagstaff, Arizona that created the original art work for these maps!! I worked on the maps for the surface of Mars and Earths Moon.

Never would I have guessed that they would be made into 3D paper models.....

Very cool,

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Old 02-02-2011, 06:31 AM
rightbasicbuilding rightbasicbuilding is offline
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Hello, Swampfox!
You are partially correct. The early version of Phobos and my Deimos foldable (constant-scale natural boundary) maps indeed are made from airbrush maps created by USGS astrogeology in Flagstaff.
You'll be interested, though, to learn that recent missions have produced enough photography of Phobos and Deimos that actual photomosaic maps of these two moons have been prepared (by Phil Stooke), and -- at least in the case of Phobos -- my latest map uses these data. I'll update the Deimos map as soon as I get a copy of Phil's latest.
As for figuring out how to make them foldable, that's my only contribution.
chuck clark
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