Sunday, February 28, 2016

Mad Max Fury Road ELVIS

Powertrain: 2 L Motors
Steering: Servo Motor
Suspension: 4 bar suspension with compression springs in front, and leaf spring in rear

This MOC is something different than my usual armored fighting vehicle. I have wanted to build a hot rod for a long time, as it has been almost 3 years since I built my 29' Ford roadster. I also wanted to build another vehicle from Mad Max.
Since I designed the Peacemaker, this vehicle has been reoccurring as a possibility for being recreated in Lego form. Though this vehicle plays a minor role in the film and doesn't get a chance to engage in combat, and gets destroyed by the spike pit early in the film. Its rather interesting dual V6 engines and rugged rat rod appearance made this vehicle stand out from some of the rather interesting vehicles from the movie.

This vehicle had some minor challenges for replicating it in Lego. The most difficult component was mounting the Power Functions components into the small shell of the body that remains. As you can see below the battery and two L Motors take up a majority of the body and chassis.

Another factor that severely limited me was a small selection of reddish brown, and brown pieces. I only own a single large set (The Trade Federation MTT from 2007 ) that contains a majority of the pieces used for building this vehicle's body. This limited the options for features that I wish I could have added to the model, but I was unable to create because of limited resources and time. The features that could be improved on this model would be the addition of working doors, improved window pillars and the addition of some surface detail for the sides of the body. Though I am fond of the shaping of the radiator and front cowl housing/firewall.

I am very pleased with the suspension of the model, the dropped front axle proved to be an interesting task to replicate with a functional suspension and steering setup. This assembly was redesigned several times to function like the actual 4 bar suspension on a Ford model A chassis. I was forced to use the springs off of Lego shock absorbers to minimize the height of the front axle and make it behave like the real vehicle's suspension. The front suspension doesn't utilize a leaf spring like the actual suspension on a Ford chassis, as Lego lacks proper leaf springs. I attempted to recreate this with a Technic flex axle. There is an issue with this method, as I was not able to affix the center of the leaf spring to the frame, and prevent side to side motion of the axle. I utilized a Technic pole reverser to eliminate the travel and retain the front axle in place. The rear suspension is rather simple it is similar to the four bar front suspension, and uses a pan hard bar to keep the axle from traveling side to side. There is a Technic flex axle that is utilized as the leaf spring above the differential.

I focused on the design of the dual V6 of this vehicle, as I wanted that component to be functional and have lots of moving components. I had to design a different method for making a operational engine, as the current Lego Technic engine block pieces are too bulky for this scale, and are brightly colored. The major challenge of the engine block was the crankshaft, I needed cams to operate the motion of the Technic axles that are the pistons. A 1.5 long liftarm would have functioned in this role, but it didn't allow me to have a proper 120° offset of the cranks. I decided to use a rigid hose and mount headlight bricks to allow for free range of adjustment and a semi rigid connection with enough friction to prevent misalignment of them on the rigid hose.

I am also grateful of Sariel for providing me with screenshots from the Mad Max game. I messed around with some different backgrounds for the addition of the model to the screenshots from the game. I found it best to utilize a black cloth to eliminate the odd lighting of shadows on a white surface, the black cloth softened the shadows and made them blend into the sand of the screenshots.

Before editing 

Final version

A couple more edited photos

Despite the flaws in this model, I am very pleased with the functionality of the suspension and the replication of the dual V6 engine/radiator. The performance is decent for having two L motors coupled with a 1:1 ratio to the differential. The model had no issue with driving over rugged terrain, and it performed decently in grass. After completing this model and seeing the film again, I have inspiration to build more vehicles from this movie in the future.


More photos

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