Sunday, July 7, 2019

Dragon Fly 3D Model

Oversize dimensional stylized dragonfly is composed 
of stubby hex body with layered swirl overwing 
and chicken wire under-wing attached. 
(Use a sharp blade for fine, detailed cut shapes.) 
Tail post (reinforced with a cut-to-size 5/16” wooden 
dowel section) intersects body and acts as base for 
layered head base that holds hexagon dome “button” eyes. 
(Alternate version can use painted 1/2” wood balls for eyes, 
glued onto alternate head base – see top sample in thumbnail.) 
Construct without leg sets, or attach 
optional leg pair sets under body. 
Measures approx. 8.5” tall x 10” wingspan x 2” deep with legs. 

ASSEMBLY: 1. Identify and cut the shapes:
A tail post wrap    B body stubby post wrap
C body post interior reinforcement hexagons (2)
D under wing top layer with inner end tabs (l & r)
E under wing build up layers (2l & 2r)
F over wing connected top pair
G over wing build up layers (2l & 2r)
H optional legs shape for build up (3 sets of 3 ea)
I optional legs front & back shapes with tabs 
(3 sets of 2 ea)
J eye base with antennae (3)
K eye base front (3)
L eye hexagon buttons (2)
NOT SHOWN: opt. ball eye base shapes
(see Steps 2 & end of K); and opt. spacer strips to lift wings
2. If you choose to use painted wooden ball eyes
variation, this is the product that was used for
the sample, 1/2" wooden beads purchased
from Hobby Lobby.
3. Prepare the shapes that will be layered and
glued together into built-up shapes so that
they can have time to dry thoroughly before
they will be used in the construction: under wings,
over wings, eye bases, optional legs.
A. Prepare the leg front and back layers by bending
the middle tabs forward.
B. For each of the 3 sets of legs, layer and glue
together three leg shapes (without the tabs),
taking care that cut edges line up as precisely
as possible.
C. Position and attach a tab front legs shape to
one side of stack, and a tab back legs shape
to the opposite side of stack, taking care to line
up cut edges a precisely as possible.
Use a flat heavy weight such as the fabric-covered
re-purposed free weight shown here to immediately press
the glued-up shapes stack flat while the glue dries,
to help prevent curling or warping.
D. Prepare the under wings top layer shapes by
bending the inward end tabs (NOTE the shape shown
here is the option to be used with legs), 
as "valley" folds.
E. Layer the two lower shapes for left and right
under wings and glue together, taking care that
all cut edges are lined up as precisely as possible
so the shapes appear as a single thickened shape.
Use a flat weight placed on top of the glued shapes
and allow to dry completely.
F. Position the corresponding top layer of
the under wing over the build up, align and match
cut edges and glue together. Press under a flat
weight and allow to dry thoroughly.
(NOTE: if you work fast, steps B & C can be
completed together, then pressed and dried.)
G. Bend the middle perforations for the over wing
top layer shape, with the center-most perf lines
as "mountain" folds, and the outer as
"valley" folds.
H. Layer the left and right build up layers for
the upper wing so that all cut edges match,
then press flat under a weight and allow to dry.
I. Position and attach the upper wing over
the lower layers, align and glue together,
and press flat and allow to dry.
(See NOTE for under wings, which also applies here.)
J. Layer and glue together the eye base of choice
(for hex button eyes or for painted wood ball eyes).
Press under a flat weight and allow to dry.
K. Layer the eye base front layers on top of
the base shape with antennae, glue together,
and press flat.
(Steps J and K can be completed prior to
pressing.)
(This image shows the same K step for
the ball eye option.)
4. Prepare the tail wrap tube by carefully bending back
on all long perforation lines, and . . . 
. . . also bending back the end attached hexagon
"lid" and the tiny triangle tabs on BOTH ends.
5. Form the shape into a tube to overlap the long
straight edge over the opposite long tab flange
to the perforation line, and gluing in place.
NOTE: it will be helpful to insert a 5/16" wooden dowel
into the tube (wrap the shape around the tube)
to provide a press-against form so that
fingers can apply pressure up and down the tube
shape to complete an accurate seam along 
the full length.
6. Prepare to measure the dowel for length so
that it can be cut to size by pushing the dowel
inward or outward until the 'top' end is even with
the top edge of the tube, where the hexagon 'lid'
is bent back. Next . . . 
. . . carefully mark the opposite end of tube
where the hex 'lid' perforation is, then .  . 
. . . remove the dowel and cut to size, taking care
to cut it a hair shorter than marked length.
6. Cut to size using hand saw, then reinsert
the dowel into the tube, adjusting until it is
centered.
7. Bend the triangle tabs inward, the hexagon
'lid' down into place, and glue all.
Repeat for second end hex lid and tabs.
8. Prepare the body tube in similar fashion to 
the way the tail narrower tube was prepared
by bending on the perforation lines.
9. Bend the hex opening triangle tabs on
each end 'lid' inward. One way to get this
started is by pushing inward at the center of
the starburst cut lines with the tip of a tool such as
this spatula tool.
Then bend them fully back/inward on the perf
cuts for each tab. Repeat for both ends.
10. Form the shape into a tube to overlap the straight
edge to the perf line of the long flange tab opposite,
and glue in place.
One way to do this is to press the shape flat
to apply pressure along the length of the seam.
11. At the end, bend the tabs inward,
apply glue, then . . . 
. . . bend the lid down into position and
adjust to help the lid edges align with
the segment edges of the tube.
Complete one end then wait until the reinforcement
inserts are installed, as shown in
the next steps.
12. Prepare the body reinforcement hex inserts
by bending the outer tabs forward as shown . . .
. . . and also bending back the center tabs in similar
manner as was done for the ends of body tube.
Prepare two reinforcement shapes.
13. At open end of body tube, position the first
reinforcement (with adhesive applied to tabs)
to align with the tube walls, then . . . 
. . . carefully slide it inside the tube, using the end
of a tool such as the spatula tube shown here,
and move it inward to the 1/3 position from
the opposite end. Take care that it remains
perpendicular to the tube walls. Once in position,
apply gentle pressure to ensure that it attaches.
14. Repeat for the second reinforcement,
pushing inward to the 2/3 position from opposite end
(or 1/3 in from open end).
15. Bend tabs inward, apply glue, bend lid into
place, adjust and apply pressure to ensure proper shape.
16. Carefully insert one end of the tail post
into the bottom end of the body tube,
continue to push inward trying to sense how . . .
. . .the post is lining up with and passing through
the openings of each of the interior reinforcement
hex openings until it finally . . . 
. . . is near the top end of the body post.
Direct the top triangle tabs of the hex opening
back under the top platform to allow them to stay
inside the boy post, as the tail post tip comes
through the opening. The final position of
the tail post is to be exposed approx. a scant 3/8".
17. Apply the adhesive to help the body tube stay in
the desired place in TWO STEPS:
A) Push the body tube almost as high as it will go
to apply adhesive just below the bottom edge
(where  body tube will eventually be return to
and where the hex opening tab may adhere);
B) Push the body tube downward to expose
a margin that will be hidden at the top to
apply adhesive there, then return the body post
to its final position to allow glue to grab.
18. Prepare the first leg unit to be attached in place
to the body tube by applying adhesive to the tabs
and also, as shown here, to the thickness of
the layers that extend upward on each side.
19. Position the legs unit on the "bottom" of
the body post where tabs will attach to that face
of the hex tube. It should be spaced back from
the end of the body tube leaving a space 
approx. 1/8" beyond the extended tab.
Push legs and body tube together so that
the legs thickness with glue can attach.
Ensure that the legs are as exactly perpendicular
and straight to the body as possible. Allow to dry.
NOTE: if omitting the legs, use the wings version
without the slot; skip steps 20-21, 23, and instead
simply position the wings in the approx. position
shown, wrapping the wings tab around body
in similar manner as shown hereafter.
20. Prepare to attach the middle legs unit by
using it as a measuring tool: position it directly
behind the front legs unit and hold in place . . . 
. . . so that the slot (that will allow wing to fit
around middle leg) can be marked with a pencil tick.
Remove the wing, and repeat for the opposite side.
21. Apply glue to the second legs unit as shown
in step 18, then position it so that the leg side
extensions cover up the pencil tick marks on
each side. Adjust to be perpendicular and straight,
then allow to dry.
22. Apply adhesive to the wing tab first and second
segments, then . . . 
. . . position the first (and second, shown here)
in place on the body with the slot fitting over
legs extension.
 Apply pressure to attach.
23. Position and attach the back legs unit directly
behind the back edge of the wings tabs.
24. To help the under wing stay in desired position,
apply adhesive to the thickness edge at tab end,
then reposition the wing to allow that edge to
attach to the tab backside. Carefully hold in place
until the glue dries and holds completely.
Repeat for second wing.
25. Apply glue to the underside of the center and two side 
segments of over wing top layer, then . . . 
. . . position over the under wings position,
centered from top to bottom, align perforations
with the body tube perforations, and apply pressure
until fully joined.
26. To assist with the over wings to hold the correct
position, apply glue at the inner edge of wing
thickness, then re-position and hold in place
against the body tube until completely dry.
27.  Prepare the eye hexagon button shapes by
bending back on all perforations for side panels,
side tabs, and . . . 
. . . tiny wedge tabs between upper side panels.
 28. To form the hexagon button, bend adjacent
side panels back so that "top" panel overlaps
the adjacent wedge tab, then continue to bend
back until the next side panel straight edge overlaps
the adjacent side tab to perforation line,
and glue in place.
Repeat for the remaining 5 seams.
Bend the bottom tabs inward.
This is the appearance of the prepared button eye.
29. Apply glue to the underside tabs, then position
the hex button over the eye base, "center" so that
the narrow margin all around is equal, then
apply pressure until adhered in place.
Repeat for the second eye.
30. Position the eyes/base unit over the tail post
extension above body tube, center, with lower edge
snugged up against the body tube, and attach.
For bead eyes: follow similar process to apply
glue to the inner edges of circle openings,
then position the painted bead in the circle window . . . 
 . . . apply pressure downward until bead is
fully attached in place. Repeat for the other bead eye.
Position and attach the head base onto the tail post
in similar manner as for button eye unit.
Here is the completed dragon fly form.