First revealed in Christopher Nolan’s iconic The Dark Knight trilogy, making its debut in Batman Begins no less, the Batmobile ‘Tumbler’ holds military-level stealth tech as its inspiration, can break through concrete walls, has bullet-proof bodywork and is unreservedly one of the finest additions to Bruce Wayne’s Batcave/hidden underground workshop… and now, we get to build a 1:8 scale model!
After kicking off with Issues 1 to 4 (head here for those), we’re taking on the Hachette Partworks challenge, and you can also build your own extensively detailed replica here, because it’s too good to resist.
Build your own Batmobile Tumbler is the assembly, alongside sticking and screwing together die-cast parts, plus plastic-moulded ones for the smaller details, and it’s clearly going to be a marvellous monster when you start realising how many features are eventually here to highlight, and today our build just keeps on growing!
While we’re in the early days of a longer-term project, and if you’ve also done one before you’ll appreciate what I mean, I thought it’d be good to blog the build – and always feel free to ask questions in the comments below.
Issues 5 and 6 are another pair of combination sections that work together. Kicking off in Issue 5 itself is the opening of the solid front bulkhead part, which comes in a rather fancy The Dark Knight-stamped small box. When it comes to putting it together, the bulkhead will help separate the engine from the driver and there’s a vast number of remaining holes for additional screw-in sections and, likely, to be electronics and wiring.
While I honestly don’t like repeating myself, it does give you a good sense of the size of what’s to come, and the strength involved in heavy metal sections such as this. As well as that beast of a bulkhead, you’re essentially screwing in a left and right bearer, with their shock absorbers, usually designed to keep your tyres on the road with suspension, but I wonder if these are just a smaller part of a design that will require further balance/strength, as it builds up.
Essentially, this is an adding together of these parts that are received separately and it’s not too taxing but… pre-screw your shock absorbers before actually doing it within the bulkhead, as sometimes they haven’t been fully cut in the thread (i.e. Screw in the screw you have into them before actually putting it all together).
The magazine itself for Issue 5 has a lovely history of the Clown Prince of Crime himself, the Joker. Whatever history you know of his origins, this feature breaks down a lot of the variations and is an insightful read. I’m a huge fan of the Joker, right through the years, so enjoyed it immensely.
As mentioned, Issue 6 is a continuation of Issue 5 as you’ll be carrying on working with the bulkhead and the section just completed -I say ‘completed’, but there’s a long way to go!
For this one, you’re adding the bulkhead bar and some nice bar supporters, plus some additional shock absorbers and joints, to offer some substance to what you’ve made already – reinforcing my thoughts about giving this base a lot of help to take the eventual weight of what’s above and below it.
Again, I wouldn’t say this is entirely complex, but I’ve found a mix of tweezers and the screwdriver can be handy to hold fiddly parts, especially when trying to screw the smaller additional absorbers. While it won’t take you forever, I always recommend making sure the screws are in flush and tight in these initial stages, as later it might be something you can’t correct – once it’s housed inside the chassis for example.
See the pics below and above for where we’re at and, trust me, you’ll always want to keep doing more but sometimes learning the slower way can give you a much better bigger picture when you get there!
The magazine for Issue 6 delves into the speed of the Tumbler, and its top speed, then the history of Batman continues with its ‘War Time’ years, and how so many storylines came to be and eventually develop. Keep an eye out for Batman and Robin’s first encounter with Alfred, the duo taking on the abhorrent Nazis and a pretty unique political front cover from Batman #18 with Dick Sprang’s genuinely iconic artwork.
In the coming issues 7, 8 and beyond that takes us inside the suspension, with parts a plenty that’ll also require patient performance from you, and I, the builder, but I’m looking forward. In the meantime, here’s a little look at everything so far!