Splik's Dalek: Bruce

Main Photo

Splik, aka Keith, had been knocking around the idea of building a Dalek for a number of years but never got around to building one, until now.

Keith says, "It all came back to me when I met a couple of Dalek builders at a convention. I had my eagle eyes over the construction and asked a whole bunch of questions which I've had bouncing around my head for the last few years.

My son is a big Doctor Who fan and a big Dalek fan, so seeing his first Dalek in the MDF was a great experience. I've also managed to convince the wife that I can put my Dalek to some good charity use in the local area and help some local projects, so she's also on board. 'Bruce' is named after the shark in Jaws... the mechanical monstrosity.

How it was done...

When cutting the skirt panels, some of them worked straight off, others needed a bit of adjustment to get them to sit correctly against the frame. Here we see the three rear panels being test fitted. Keith cut the main base to match the skirt base. As the skirt base was fairly accurate he simply attached the skirt bottom to the main base and ran the jigsaw around the edge, at the appropriate offset.

Holes were drilled through the skirt frame bottom and the main base. These were then placed together and attached using M6 roofing bolts, fitted with wing nuts. The wing nuts make them easy to separate, for maintenance. Keith also fitted a rear strut (not shown here), to help fit the panels, but this came out once the skirt panels were satisfactorily fitted.

Here, Keith has edged the skirt with 18mm wood, which at this point still needed sanding and filling in places. He also cut out the hole in the base for his feet to go through. However, the seat still needed fitting before any test driving could be done. Black trim was later fitted around the base. Painting the base black and attaching some damp proof membrane around the edge as an alternative to rubber, seemed an attractive option.

The gun box seen here is a dummy version, put together using cardboard to assess the position and the fit, in relation to the shoulders. Being as the plans are intentionally vague, regarding the box dimensions (because they vary so much), Keith built the front from the plans and worked out the sides, top and bottom from my cardboard version, tweaking them until he was happy with the shape.

Keith measured the inside diameter of the dome and cut out a disk using a router. He then marked up four segments, making sure he had enough width for the eye-stalk mounts and cut them out with the jigsaw. Next, he added a bolt through the centre and worked out the height required for the dome rotation wheels, then I popped the whole thing together.

To make the eye pivot, Keith used a threaded rod and put a couple of springs in place to centre the eye when at rest. The intention was to disconnect the spring when the Dalek is being operated, for more control. At this stage, the wheels still needed to be added to the rim of the neck bin, to support the dome's inner rotation ring.

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