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Project: 1/72 Balao Class USS Bowfin (SS-287)

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  • Project: 1/72 Balao Class USS Bowfin (SS-287)

    Hello All, it was some time that I joined the forum but it is not that nothing happened in the mean time.

    I promised To post my progress, so here it go's.
    I will do a recap to the point where I am now.

    The whole project started after I received the drawings and will be designed in Fusion 360.
    The model itself will be mostly printed in PLA+ and resin.

    I choose for the Bowfin in the November 1944 outfit, so still with the old deckgun on the front deck.
    Simply because I like this outfit, and I have some pictures of this period.
    Another source is the Bowfin museum, however at its current state it has a lot of the late and after war modification.
    So I still need to do a lot of investigation of what is and what is not correct for my model, and no doubt there will be some minor detail mistakes made.
    And in the meantime I had to learn Fusion 360 as well, so some parts toke longer than needed to design, but so far it is huge fun to do and I enjoy this project a lot.

    Anyway, here is the designed 3D model so far.

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    And the other side, the anchor housing is printed seperatly in resin.

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    The first parts that I printed where the fairwater, bridge and all the bells and whistles.

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    Bridge and ventury.

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    Periscope housing

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    And how things start to come together.

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    I desided to make all the piping in messing because it just looks better.

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    I made the deck hatches out of resin with messing springs.

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    I make a sepperate post about the hull, or this will get too long.

  • #2
    Next step is the hull.

    As a side note, everything is still a work in progress, I switch from part to part now and than to keep things interesting.

    All PLA+ parts I give a coat of UV resin from my printer and cure it under a UV lamp.
    It makes the PLA+ much stronger and it fills up the most printing lines, see it as a base coat of filler.
    And personaly I find it sanding much smoother than the PLA+ itself.

    Anyway, I print the hull in parts, my Ender 3 pro is not that big :D

    On all the gleu seams I make a bulkhead, this makes the lining up easyer and gives some more material for the gleu to hold on.

    I printed the bow in two parts, this made the print more doable and gives some room to make the interior more fitting.
    The two parts will be gleued together later.

    Here the first part with the seperate anchor housing.

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    And the bow mockup as it will become later.

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    The anchor housing and the anchor, as you see I first tryed it in PLA+ but I didnt like the result so I printed it in resin.

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    Than I started to print the first hull part, those are long prints.
    The hull parts print time is between the 14 and 18 hour.

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    After cleaning and roughly sanding it gets resin treated and sanded again.

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    And a mockup, to admire my work :D

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    Than printed the two midsections with the bilge keels, and a mockup to check the fit.

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    Printed another section and guess starts to look like a boat :D

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    Now it became time to make some bulkheads.

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    And the bulkheads for the deck as well, these are seperate so the deck can be removed.

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    And this is how it all should come together.

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    • #3
      Well this is a short recap of the progress so far.

      Now I am working on the deck and plan to print the first part next week.

      I hope this thread is a inspiration for some, or maybe a help.
      Please feel free to ask anything about the project and I am happy to answer.

      And probably somewhere along the line I will have questions as well.


      • #4
        Impressive! You did this as your first Fusion 360 model? Very humbling. Look forward to your progress!
        If you can cut, drill, saw, hit things and swear a lot, you're well on the way to building a working model sub.


        • #5
          You Fusion work /boat is remarkable. Great project!!