This product was around US$55 when designed, but after the Oct'14 pricing changes, it comes out at over $250. It is no longer for sale.
This is the frame of a 1/288-scale four-engine Type P Zeppelin, suitable for skinning with any of a number of products available for balsa model airplanes. The rings are reinforced to hold their shape and the model is strong and lightweight. Gondolas, outboard propeller pods, and the machinegun platform are included. Matching propeller disks and machine gun crew are available as a separate product in Frosted Ultra Detail.
Shapeways asked me to break the full Zeppelin into two separate parts for increased printability. The parts join together with some locking rings in the center. To assemble, you simply insert the locking fingers through matching slots and twist so that the gondolas are aligned at the bottom. You can disassemble the zeppelin for storage or glue them together permanently, at your option. (Note, I have not stress-tested the model to ensure it could stand 1,000 duty-cycles.) A truss-arch runs through the center to keep the model rigid. Two reinforced mounting cylinders are placed along the keel, with conical holes for use with telescoping rods or similar mounts. (You may have to clean out the holes...sometimes they retain the modeling powder.) Above those cylinders, two rings are reinforced for mounting by hanging from above.
All external proportions and ring placements are exactly correct for a Type-P Zeppelin of this era (within the limits of 3D printing), including the narrower segment along the keel and the 19-segment to 17-segment transition near the tail. Thorsten Brand's diagrams were an excellent reference in putting this together.
The fit between the pieces is fairly tight. If you find it too tight, first rub the two pieces together in a twisting motion to remove any grit between them. It may help to clean the "joining fingers" with a toothbrush. As a last resort, you can use a nail file on the underside of the joining fingers, though I did not find this necessary. When fully in place, the gondolas should line up exactly.
1/288 Zeppelin Accessories1/144 Zeppelin Parts