Volvo Laplander refinement

When I began this project I thought it would go very quickly and be a very simple model.  At first glance the truck seems to be …..well…. a box on wheels.  Those engineers at Volvo….so tricky!  There are actually quite a few rounded edges and curves on this version of the truck.  The later models beginning the TGB11 and TGB13 have many more square edges.

With the basic outer shapes completed I could set my sights on adding thickness to the model and begin to refine the edges.  There is a particular spot on the front of the truck where the front doors go in slightly to meet angles of the upper part of the body.  I looked at every picture I could find but I just couldn’t quite get it right.  Sensing my desperation, Tedd took me to see the truck in real life so I could get a video and conquer my designer’s block.  That was all I needed to make things right.

We are doing a complete interior for this truck but first I just needed some front wheel wheels to get a feeling of how the front tires fit into the body.  After adding the wheel wells I started rounding the edges around the front of the truck.  I also added some color to the body to get a feel for just what it is looking like so far.

The printing process shouldn’t be too difficult to get done considering the many options available today.  We are also in talks with a mold making company to see what they can offer us in terms of production and different possibilities to explore.

The Axial axles are anything but scale looking but have many upgrade options available on the market.  Keeping with the theme of standard, off-the-shelf parts, we are looking at creating more realistic axle designs.  We have been talking with GCM Racing of Canada about adjusting their TerraMod axles to fit the design of the Laplander axles.  Chris at GCM is fantastic to work with and always interested in new challenges in the world of Tiny Trucks.  Both axles have the center offset towards the passenger side of the truck.  Chris worked up a modification to his TerraMod axels and sent us an image.


He did let us know that theses axles are designed to work with the GCM chassis so they wouldn’t work with the SCX10 chassis.  This is understandable as it is a GCM product.  The great thing is they are releasing a new chassis which seems like a great fit for this truck.  It is another available option for the truck body and hobbyists out there that would like to make a truck like this.

For the printing process I needed to get a feel for just how much I would need to break up the body so I decided to make a box to represent the print area available with Shapeways.  This lets me know how each piece will fit together and how many I can pack into one file.  I can reuse this printing area box throughout the modeling process.

You might notice that the box is quite smaller than the truck which means there will be some chopping to come.  This adventure continues to unfold and keeps looking better.

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Christopher lives and works in Stockholm, Sweden where he enjoys his passion for radio controlled vehicles. He spends his spare time working on various projects involving scale RC trucks and 3D modeling.

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