by: Damian Rigby [ ]
For those of us wishing to put together an Auto diorama in 1/24 scale, the range of accessory items has been broadened by the arrival of a new supplier of 3D printed parts called BlackLight Design. Along with the traditional oil drums and jerry cans, we can now get a range of very interesting items starting with large shipping pallets and crates, recycling bins and traffic lights, and all the way down to beer bottles and coffee cups. Scales available are 1/87, 1/72, 1/48, 1/35, 1/24 and 1/18.
I received an order of items in 1/24 scale to use in a pending diorama, and the supplier generously supplied a few extra items for review.
The items were shipped very well packaged and survived the journey across the Pacific to me undamaged. Each item was individually packed in a small ziplock bag, nicely labelled with the suppliers’ name, and the complete order was enclosed in bubble packaging and in a sturdy cardboard box.
The images speak for themselves in terms of the items received, so I will only comment on the quality of the manufacturing.
The surface finish on the items is superb. There are only a couple of tiny flaws, similar to air bubble holes, that I can find, much less than I have encountered in the past in poured resin items. There is a small chip out of the bottom rim of one of the red oil drums. The cleanup of these minor issues will be quick and easy, and to be honest with the nature of the diorama that I am working on, I will likely not bother at all.
The raised detail on the items is excellent (check the knurled nut on the pourer of one of the oil cans for example). The edges are crisp and there is no deformation or irregularity in any of the shapes.
The material is quite hard, completely dry and clean of any residue. The manufacturer states that the goods require no further preparation and can be primed as supplied.
The one fault that stood out to me was in the shipping crates. A glitch in the printing process meant that there is an asymmetry in the cubic shape of the crate which can be seen in the images. I contacted the manufacturer and got an immediate reply as follows:
“I know about the issue. It is an inherent deviation on the Z axis of the printer on the first few layers. It appears only on the objects printed "flat" on the printer's bed. We have eliminated already the issue, by adding a printing support and sustaining pillars that absorb the initial deviation. The final product is error free.”
The manufacturer’s website (www.bld-thega.com) shows quite a few other items available such as carbon fibre decals and a small range of car kits.