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Smithsonian’s Apollo 11 Command Module

An old friend asked for a copy of the Smithsonian’s Apollo 11 Command Module. I started with a tiny 1:80 version to check feasibility:

Apollo 11 CM - 1-80 scale

Apollo 11 CM – 1-80 scale

It’s obviously not printable in one piece without a ton of support, so I chopped off the heatsink and printed the parts separately in the obvious orientation:

Apollo 11 CM - 1-80 scale - split - Slic3r preview

Apollo 11 CM – 1-80 scale – split – Slic3r preview

And glued them back together:

Apollo 11 CM - clamping

Apollo 11 CM – clamping

That worked well enough, even without locating pins, to give me confidence that it’d come out all right.

There’s plenty of gimcrackery surrounding the upper airlock:

Apollo 11 CM - 1-40 scale - top - Slic3r preview

Apollo 11 CM – 1-40 scale – top – Slic3r preview

Most of which simply vanished at 1:80 scale:

Apollo 11 CM - 1-80 scale - top detail

Apollo 11 CM – 1-80 scale – top detail

I made another cut just below the top of the capsule and ran off a 1:40 scale version that came out somewhat better, but it was still ugly:

Apollo 11 CM - 1-40 scale - mortar detail

Apollo 11 CM – 1-40 scale – mortar detail

Much to my astonishment, the grab rail over the side hatch, between the two parachute motars, came out well every time.

The giant 1:20 scale version would require something over 24 hours of printing, so I went with 1:30 in three pieces:

Apollo 11 CM - 1-30 scale - sections

Apollo 11 CM – 1-30 scale – sections

The top had pretty good detail:

Apollo 11 CM - 1-30 scale - top section - 1

Apollo 11 CM – 1-30 scale – top section – 1

Another view:

Apollo 11 CM - 1-30 scale - top section - 2

Apollo 11 CM – 1-30 scale – top section – 2

Gluing the parts together made it ready for cleanup / finishing / painting:

Apollo 11 CM - 1-30 scale - assembled

Apollo 11 CM – 1-30 scale – assembled

Which he’s better at than I ever will be…

Natural PETG probably isn’t the right plastic for that kind of model, but it’s what I had on hand.

Enjoy!

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  1. #1 by Ken Davidson on 2016-09-07 - 08:00

    What, no OpenSCAD source code? :o)

    • #2 by Ed on 2016-09-07 - 11:40

      Mash together a conical frustum and a spherical cap with some rectangular bars, then sprinkle a few cylinders here & there: that should get you to the moon!

      Designed mostly with slide rules. Makes me feel downright dumb, that it does.