It’s been a while! Here are some pictures of the crew capsules that came with Three Missions, the 2018 Summer quarterly edition from Field Notes. This post will NOT be a review of the edition, but simply a detailed look into and an appreciation of the paper models. I’ll also talk about my experience assembling them.
So here they are! The 3-pack of memo books came packaged with 3 sheets of “Punch-Out and Assemble” mission-specific crew capsule models, pictured above, from left: Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo. Specs on the memo books indicate that these model sheets are Domtar Lynx 80#C, while the cover on the memo books are Westrock Tango 12pt C1S “White” with an aqueous coating. Indeed these paper models have a matte finish, while the memo books have a slightly glossy finish.
All model sheets came printed with the same set of brief instructions, which I thought were enough initially. Punch out the pieces, curl, then assemble in alphabetical order. Simple, right? Once I started though, I quickly learned that my bare hands were not going to be nimble enough to pry open all the slots neatly and combine the small pieces together. Good thing I had a pair of sharp tweezers handy. That helped a lot, except, I had to fudge my way through opening the slots in the right direction and holding the “TUCK” pieces steady enough to add other pieces to them, or fitting them into other pieces without untucking them. Also, I ended up having to shorten one of the strips that make a cylinder (I think it was part of Mercury), because it was too long to fit around an end (circular) piece. Miscalculation in the design or my mistake? *shrug* Overall, it was a bit frustrating but still satisfying to see all the pieces come together. I didn't need any glue or tape, if you were curious.
Had I remembered that there was a lengthy, detailed PDF of instructions at the Three Missions product page, I’d have had much easier time. D’oh! So if you haven’t assembled yours yet, I suggest you read the instructions first! As you can see, I got by without them, but there were some tricky parts that I wish I’d had gotten help with first. In Apollo, for example, some of the slots have to open outward, and the small black tip goes inside. Plus, you’ll find in the PDF lots of humor and tidbits on the three space missions, in the usual Field Notes fashion, so I highly recommend you read them.
Some details I noticed: item numbers on the paper models! FNC-39b on Gemini and FNC-39c on Apollo. Strangely, there is no “FNC-39a” printed on Mercury. And what is this “FNC-39d Agena Target Vehicle (sold separately)” they mention in the instructions? :D
I’ve always enjoyed paper crafts, so it was fun to finally get these assembled. Three Missions might not be my favorite Field Notes edition of all time or anything like that, but I’m still impressed by the effort they put into making paper models (who did all the calculations?). At first I thought the flight sequence in the promo video was simulated, but apparently the models were actually sent into space! Definitely impressive for their first time making paper models. The PDF of instructions was titled “Paper Model Series”... Does this mean they’ll make more in the future?