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  1. This old Lunar Models kit has been on the shelf for years. I acquired it from a vendor long forgotten. It has been calling me off and on to build it. First problem: It is a Lunar Models resin figure with sheet plastic to build the monolith. It goes without saying that there will be casting, fit, and accuracy issues. It's a Lunar Models kit, remember! Accuracy: Bowman met the monolith in a hotel room, not on the surface of the moon, so the moon base is out. The chest and back packs worn by the Clavius Base astronauts in their silver suits could be used, but those parts are radically different (and missing from the kit box) from those worn by Bowman and Poole on Discovery (which are in the box). Bowman was wearing his red suit. The kit monolith is way too small and out of proportion with the movie prop. Casting: Rubber molds were used for pouring the resin pieces. I know this because I was pulling out small chunks of rubber from the ribbed suit details. This means that the next guy got a resin casting worse than mine. I dug out many resin plugs where they should not have been because of missing rubber on my pieces when they were cast. Fit: The rubber molds did not join properly on most pieces, causing large mismatches along the seams. I've spent many hours carving on the ribbed arms, legs, and torso of the space suit. Some of the mismatches were in excess of 1/32-inch with very visible overhangs. The ribbed hoses were a pain to clean up. The figure is 1/8 scale, which I determined by looking up the actor's height and adding a few inches for the boots and helmet. The movie prop monolith was 12 feet high. From photos, I determined the width as 4 feet 11 inches and the thickness as 9 inches. I am using the movie prop dimensions and not those used by Clarke in the books or the dialogue in "2010." This is a work in progress, with the figure taped together and the monolith in its initial rigid foam core state cut to size. For accuracy, the helmet is the worst piece. I had to extend the front by 1/8-inch in order to get the correct shape to the glass. This led to filling and building up the front top. It still did not look right. I enlarged a photo of the helmet's profile. Horrors. I have to add 3/16-inch to the top (see white plastic strips to establish the height and contour. The glass must be extended back as marked by the tape. I've already sanded off the oversize and inaccurate panels on the back of the helmet to be replaced by scratchbuilt ones. For filler, I'm using Squadron White Putty, Elmer's Almond Wood Putty, and Mr. Surfacer 1200 out of the bottle. This helmet has a long way to go to carve the recessed window (both sides) and build up the entire top to cover the white plastic guide. The foam core monolith will be covered with black sheet plastic that I have on order from the LHS. Hope you like how this looks so far. Ed
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