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Budgeree Dalek - Chimay

14 posts in this topic

Posted (edited)

The timeline for this build must end in October 2018 – I have two winters of build time before a reveal at a secret location (which I’m sure will be disclosed here through the course of this build.)

Ostensibly it will be a NSD but no doubt if the build deviates along the way the diary could be moved to a more appropriate category.

There is a pile of goodies growing on a shelf that my wife bought me for Christmas – my Dalek shelf. I’ve been reading Daleks, watching Daleks, dreaming Daleks and now I’m seeing Daleks everywhere I look!



(Phillip Island visitors centre).


I have plans in hand, have devoured the build diaries of, and give thanks to, the many that have gone before me, and hope I may entertain any who join with me along the way. I don’t expect I will be inventing anything that hasn’t been done before, but I am sure I will be ever on the lookout for new ideas and will be grateful for warnings of pitfalls before I encounter them.

So let’s bring a new Dalek into the world… The end of the International Airshow marked the start date for this build. I pored over the plans and organised my bill of ply and MDF for collection the following weekend at Bunnings. This 17mm ply has a plastic coating – they didn’t have any other thick stuff in stock, so this film may or may not be to any advantage.


I remembered a while ago seeing a post with an animated .gif (thanks Adam_St)  showing marking out the base and, being a diligent forum member used the search facility to find it again – took me four days but I got it back, lost it again then found it again here:


and many thanks for the invaluable plans for the side panels generated by Peekaymac here:


This little ebay gizmo proved a great help in setting angles of dangle (25 & 20 degrees respectively).


It was a late start to the day but after the daily chores were done it was out with the square, pencil and circular saw, and we’re off. 


Continuing on with a whole bunch of bits of 12mm ply I marveled at how angles of 20 + 20 + 25 + 25 adds up to 90 degrees – who would have thought! I just hope that all of the other angles add up to a dalek fender base circumference!


A bit of a dummy fit with sticky tape and string and I’ve got the shape of the holding brackets as well. I used my band-saw to whip the brackets in to shape using the rectangular snowflake pattern but the band broke after cutting three quarters of the brackets. That’s it – I cracked it, packed up and readied the jigsaw to finish them off tomorrow.


End of first day and I’ve got a heap of bits of plywood – can’t wait to start putting them together.


Edited by Budgebrewer
Added photo caption to wierd looking thing

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Day Two of Chimay's build - another fine, stable Autumnal day.

I ordered some new bandsaw blades off e-buy last night. Finished off the brackets with a jigsaw then figured I should sand off the plastic film where I want to stick wood to wood – just in case.

These little things are awesome – sure can make a big mess in a short time. Figured I should remove some more of the edge of the inside film as well – with a view to fibreglassing the joins later if necessary


I went looking for my boxes of Aldi wood screws I bought a couple of years ago – must have known I would be going to build a Dalek then! I found every size except the 60mm I needed so made a quick trip to the local IGA/Mitre10 to get two small packets of 10 in exchange for a small bag of gold. Needless to say I found my box of 100 as soon as I got back home.

I pre drilled the plywood brackets to attach to the base and even then managed to split one or two, but I figured that with a generous schgloop of liquid nails they just had to sit there until it dried.


I fitted the double angled panels, again generously buttered with liquid nails and used an air bradder to whack a couple of 25mm pins in each to hold them in place. Sure was a whole lot stronger then the sticky tape I used for the dummy fit yesterday!


When I came to fit the fender sides I discovered I had cut some of  the brackets too short down the outside edge – I think must have measured with the angled fender piece against the bottom edge of the ply base instead of the top.


That’s what I get for working upside down! Luckily the gap turned out to be the thickness of two strips of ply so, just like the liquid nails adverts, I bunged a sandwich of ply and goobers into the gap, this time shooting 50mm pins through to hold in place. And thank goodness for the air bradder –kerchoosh- nailed! Oooh looks like I’ve made a little boat!


On the topside I had to grind off the points of some of the 60mm screws that poked through that could easily have drawn blood. Happy to report – no blood yet spilled on this build! It would seem I cut the internal (non-critical cut) of some of the brackets a bit thinner than intended. I’ll bet two bob it was the ones I did with the jig-saw!


As I have read elsewhere on these pages – you will have gaps, you will get holes – bog will fix it,

... tomorrow!


There’s plenty of daylight left so let’s move on to the other end of the Dalek – time to start making a dome plug! Nothing seems to stick to that plastic coating so I chopped a square of that stuff with a view to being easily able to keep the under-surface of the dome former clean – some earlier builds showed the problem of plaster build up raising the height of the former. A couple of big washers and a nut each side held my threaded rod vertical. (Opportunity for anatomical joke noted.)

Also, check out this kick-a compass from Aldi’s - a nice toy for making big circles. I’m sure it will come in handy for other things too. 

After cutting out the arc and flange of the former, went looking for something to attach former to rod. I’ve recently replaced my guttering and had one of the old gutter brackets handy. Cut off the loopy bit, drilled screwed and we’re good to go.


Meanwhile I’m telling my building assistant – good friend and neighbor, Cliff – about my phone taking pictures with voice commands like “smile”, “cheese” and “capture”. Of course my pocket was taking photos while I was talking. One day I’ll finish building my cattle yards, but first - a Dalek waits.


I liked the carved foam approach to starting the dome and went looking everywhere for the electric carving knife. I think it either went bung or “someone” decided we didn’t need it anymore and all I could find were the blades. Hmmm, double contra-oscillation seems out of the question but surprise, surprise, one of the blades fitted into my reciprocating saw. So like a cross between Edward Scissor Hands and Texas Chainsaw Massacre I set to work. I was a bit impatient and didn’t wait for the glue to properly dry in my foam block stack so as I sliced, bits started to go everywhere. A poke and a shove here and there kept the thing together, all the while carefully avoiding the oscillating turkey carver. Ended up with a cross between bombe-alaska and a liquid nails swirl cake, and a sheit-load of snow all over the back yard. In the interests of environmental friendliness and marital harmony, the shed vac sucked most of the snow out of the lawn.


Woohoo, plaster time! I haven’t had so much fun since playing mud pies and doctors and nurses in grade 4. No idea why we played both at the same time, but I think one was to be a ruse for the other. Anyway, no daisy in the belly button of this Dalek. The plaster went off pretty quickly so had to work fast, working up an afternoon beer thirst that had to be quenched (had to do something while watching plaster dry!) That done, another batch of plaster went on. And finally a nice, “even”, thin coat and a few whiz arounds with the former.


A good day’s work I think so time to salute the sunset with a very special Belgian ale. This beer won equal third in last year’s state comp. but got pipped by half a point on a count-back. Never mind – a very fine ale to end the day with.


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I have shed envy - well sort of.

This is my workshop (on a fine day).


And I have to say it's a pretty damned fine view off into the Strzelecki ranges. But I read of some of the skills and toys available to some of the fellow Aussie Dalek builders especially Dalek Royalty the likes of Bec Weir, Aaron J et al ... then I pick up my trusty jigsaw and keep on hacking. *sigh* ...


In between more sanding and filling on the dome I had time to cut the skirt frames.


 If I were to do this again, to cut out the top from from inside the bottom, I'd probably drill starter holes in the long straights rather than in the corners. When it comes to aligning the skirt panels it would be nicer to have corner points or reference instead of a gaping hole. Yet more holes to bog!


Also, when marking our the skirt panels I wish I'd found the layout diagram. I discovered this after I'd marked out my panels and started cutting. If I'd found it earlier I would have had a more sizeable leftover.

Once I had my skirt frame pieces I couldn't resist ... first stack shot!



Back to work on the dome. The previous day’s action of former and wet plaster left lots of Neptunian rings on the dome. Not sure if it’s because I had a hairy former, lumpy plaster or both. Anyway, I’ve read all about filling and sanding... filling and sanding... ad nauseum, so there’s nothing for it but to whack on a dust mask and away we go. For the first brutal attack I thought it would be nice to have a lazy susan to try to get some even sanding strokes going on. I up-ended the quad bike trailer and the dome sat on top and spun like a top – once it was centred properly. I just have to say, thank goodness for high build primer, skim coat and an air operated palm sander. Put a swipe of skim-coat on the fender as well while we were at it to fill the wood-grain of the ply.



I wish I’d found these stainless doobies years ago – far more robust than plastic spreaders - easy to clean and I reckon they’ll last forever. And they don’t melt when wet with thinners!


Sanding the dome revealed lots of air bubbles, some interesting flaky bits, more Neptunian rings and gave the elbow a good workout. Planet Neptune becomes planet Mars.





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I look at that hillside and I think "Bunnies!"  B)


You're going well. Let me know if you need anything. I've been known to send out care packages......


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Awesome, thankyou for your encouragement and kind offer Bec. I'm sure I will be needing to pick you brains in the near future!

Grrrr... rabbits! You can have 'em. What were our earlier immigrants thinking? No Broccoli, no bean seedlings, no citrus trees!

Stewing and easter eggs - that's all they're good for!


Back to work - Time now to make a skirt. Out with the Singer and away we go!


I was quite excited by the thought of the frameless skirt – anything to reduce weight and give more room inside for other things. We did a dry run fitting up the panels and were well prepared for the ubiquitous “X-factor”.


With liquid nails and the bradder at the ready, my trusty building colleague and I set to work. Starting with the back panel, being biggest and squarest, moving on to panels 4 we seemed to be making something that seemed to be quite solid. The bradder seemed to be causing us grief though – seemed to be shooting blanks more often than fixing a panel to the frame. I should say that our particular mode of skirt build would have been nearly impossible for a sole operator and I give thanks to my very patient build-buddy Cliff. More grief from the bradder when we got to the twisted panels – funny how it would shoot OK into a thick piece of test chipboard but upside down on the skirt the panels wouldn’t hold. Lastly the front panels and then... plop – the whole thing fell in a heap on the workshop floor.


And here it stayed until the next day. We stayed surprisingly calm actually – possibly the lure of a nice end-of-day scotch to warm the bloodstream in the fast encroaching cold of an autumn evening.



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Next day – in the light of day we discovered that the bradder was indeed working the whole time. Typically, if the nailer doesn’t work I’ll give it another hit followed by several more in rapid succession until I get something to shoot out. Probably not the wisest way to use an air nailer. They were shooting out alright – right through the MDF! Some even went shooting right through the ply and a couple embedded in the foam block spacer we were using to give us the height between the frames. Lucky someone didn’t lose an eye! A quick tweak of the air pressure adjuster and we’re back on track.


Another fortuitous outcome of the collapse meant that we could score the sides of the panels ready for fibreglassing later. I imagine this was much easier than trying to roughen them up from the inside of the constructed skirt!


Of course, as soon as you have a skirt you need a stack shot!


Time for some more work on the dome and planet Mars turns into planet Earth.




As it's easter and there's still plenty of day left, it's time to make some neck rings. The tool that came with the router didn't extend to the required radius so it was out with the welder, a tent peg and a washer and bung the bits together. My welds look like bird-shits so this photo has the device cleverly placed upside down.


Time now to make a lot of dust! Luckily we're outside, but working with MDF a respirator mask was the order of the day.


So much for my special radius tool - both router nuts must have vibrated loose by the last cut of the third ring and I've gouged into the inner side of the ring by a router bit width.


Can I get away with this? Where do I place the checkout for the upright - up to the fault/over the fault/in the fault... ? Bummer.

Oh did I mention the dust?


And or course, as soon as there's more Dalek bits, they get added to the stack!


Happy egg day!





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Rabbits you say? I have a nice - and very quiet - BRNO .22.......


That dome is looking really nice, let me know if you want a cowl (for free) to go with it. Just PM me your address and I'll pop it (and other bits) in the post for you. Cowls are a pain in the bum to make.


With your neck rings, just see if the cut-out for the neck rings will fit and take up the majority of the boo boo. It won't be very visable, especially if that area is put around the back of the Dalek.


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Hmmm... all this talk of rabbits is making me hungry.


Great progress Budgebrewer.

I too took a gouge out of one of my rings, and being on the external bevelled edge it was/is very obvious to me.

Like Bec said, move it to the back.

My Daek is still very much modular and is likely to stay that way for ease of transport.

I now use the gouge as a marker so I know where the back is when mounting to the shoulders.





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Bec you're a whizz! A couple of cracks with my (very loud!) 222 and I don't see anything but bits of one for a week or so at a time lol.

But this one's for you - saw it on my way to work. We've got some very enterprising farmers herebouts



*OUCH* @ Mark! I enjoyed reading your build - don't think I remember seeing that gremlin ;) An inbuilt alignment tool - brilliant!

To the back it goes then! Luckily its only about 5mm max and gently over about 50mm.


When I routed the bevel on my rings the bearing on the router bit crapped itself and vaporised in a puff of smoke! I nearly had a disaster but luckily just suffered a few burn marks that look like they will sand out OK.


Back to work.

Taped up the skirt and set to work with some resin and glass.


While that was curing I continued on with some more neck furniture.

All of the timber bits that aren't ply or MDF are being crafted from timber that I have milled on my property.


The uprights are pine and the neck blocks are hardwood. My10mm balls are cedar from e-bung but I've just seen a ball cutter and would have made my own if I'd discovered it earlier - maybe the next Dalek - OMG what am I saying???


The neck blocks I worked on en bloc(sorry!) of five - that was the maximum length that would fit comfortably  in my bandsaw to comb-tooth the check outs. After a few test drills to get the angle of dangle and the depth right, with a jig set up I bored in to the genuines. I put a tiny dob of glue in the ball holes but reckon they'd stay there of their own accord anyway - I had to squeeze like buggery to get my balls in their holes. Then back on the bandsaw to slice them up. That was quite a satisfying little part of the build.



My dome has gone from Neptune to this...



When is it time to call it quits looking for dips and blemishes? Either when they're all gone or when you've had enough? Whichever comes first I guess.


The resin's gone off so its off with the tape. A little bit of bleed through but nothing a hit with the sander won't fix.It's amazing how strong this structure is - remember, apart from the upper and lower rings there's no internal framework. And as soon as you have anything that looks remotely like a Dalek, like a kid with a cardboard box Cliff's right in - with Maisy wanting to have a go at it - can't wait to see the dog when Chimay lights up and moves autonomously screaming "exterminate the dog!"


And of course, with some more bits it's time to stack them up.




Just before calling it a day I thought I'd make this dunny seat...

And bung it on to yet another routed ring then sit aside for the glue to go off - this is sure to take a pounding in due course.



How did he get in there... again !?





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I had to squeeze like buggery to get my balls in their holes




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Ooer, Matron!


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Your patience has paid off, those are amazing looking neck blocks.

I had three goes a making one and even that was still a little dodgey looking.


I have to ask....


Where did Cliff get his Davros mask from ?


Nice looking dome too, lucky you didn't use Uranus.






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Ahahaha@Mark. Cliff’s lurking in here somewhere keeping an eye on the diary so maybe he will chirp in and tell us. In any case, lucky it’s not my dial in the pics!

Oh, I didn't pick Uranus 'cos it's got a bigger ring than mine ;)


I must say, those blocks were probably my most satisfying part of the build so far, I did wonder why anyone would muck around with molds and casting... until I finally got to block #24. Might as well stick 'em on then...


Ripped in to the rings with a jigsaw, chiseling out the checkout for the neck stalks. One of the pencil lines happened to line up with my earlier described router overshoot so the boo-boo has vanished. Some screwing and gluing and there's the neck rings.



I discovered I had a bit of unwanted hairiness around some of the balls but that came clean off with a craft knife - along with some oozed out gorbs of liquid nails.



Email just in  - even my neighbors are seeing Daleks for me now!


Seen at Gobarup – and for our International readers, yes it’s a real place – near Kyabram, North East Victoria. And I thought Queensland had the monopoly on funny place names – sheesh.


Ok, so this is the bit that I’ve been dreading - covering the shoulders. I’ve seen templates made with cardboard, butchers paper, newspaper, A4 sheets taped together... didn’t have any of those handy. And how fortuitous – necessity being the mother of invention and all that ...

I placed the shoulder frame on the 3mm MDF stock and with pencil in hand and my able assistant (Davros) on the other side of the frame, began to roll the frame. The pencils stayed in line with the points of the frame in contact with the surface – front half – back half. Voila – front and back tracings ready to cut out.


Actually I did try making a template with newspaper but it went floppy and wrinkly and so I continued with tracing the frame directly onto the stock.


I gave each side an extra cm when cutting to allow for any possible misalignment. I couldn’t believe how simple it was. After a quick dummy fit of both bits I decided to attach the front half of the skin first. I might just need a few more clamps for the back half so another trip to the big B might be in order to do the back.

I didn’t bother with water, just grunted and squeezed after applying liquid nails, clamped in a few spots and shot home a few brads for good measure. This time with the air pressure turned down for the bradder! We'll see how the tighter bending back bit goes in due course after the front glue's dried.


Must be time to stack all the bits up again. My wife arrived home just at that point, took one look, her jaw dropped and said “shit it’s big!” Thank you for noticing Dear!



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Moulding and casting stuff means that you only ever have to make one of anything, and, with things like the neck blocks, I have a mould of 12 neck blocks and can knock out all 24 in about 20 minutes.


Same goes with sucker cups and eyes.


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