A LeadBelt Gaming Guide Series
Scale is a fundamental concept in model making, as it determines the size of the model in relation to the real-life object. It is important for architects, designers, and engineers to use scales accurately in their models to convey information and make decisions. Using the correct scale allows models to be accurate, realistic, and effective in communicating design ideas and concepts.
In addition to the inch/foot scale and the metric scale, there are other types of scales used in different industries and applications. For example, in the model train industry, the most common scale is HO (1:87), which means that one inch on the model represents 87 inches in real life. In the military modelling community, scales such as 1:35 and 1:72 are often used to represent vehicles and soldiers.
However, there is also an international, engineering, or metric scale that is used worldwide. This scale is not based on any specific measurement, but instead represents how many measurement points of the real-life object are represented by one measurement point on the model. This scale is expressed as a ratio, such as 1:X or 1/X, and is read as “one to X.”
When working with scales, it is important to ensure that all parts of the model are proportionate to each other and to the real-life object. This includes details such as colours, textures, and materials. Model makers also need to be aware of the limitations of the materials they are working with, as some details may be too small or too large to be accurately represented at certain scales.
When we talk about scale in model making, we’re basically talking about how much smaller or larger a model is compared to the real-life object it represents. To figure out the size of a model based on its scale, we use a formula:
Lm = (Ld x Y) / X
Let’s break this down:
- Lm stands for the length of a measurement on the model.
- Ld stands for the length of the same measurement on the drawing or blueprint of the real-life object.
- X is the scale of the model, and Y is the scale of the drawing or blueprint.
So if we know the length of a measurement on the drawing and the scales of the drawing and model, we can use this formula to figure out how long that same measurement should be on the model.
Here’s an example:
Let’s say we have a drawing of a building, and the scale of the drawing is 1:50. That means that one unit of measurement on the drawing represents 50 units of measurement in real life.
We want to make a model of the building, but we want it to be at a scale of 1:100. That means that one unit of measurement on the model will represent 100 units of measurement in real life.
Let’s say the length of a wall on the drawing is 10 centimetres. We can use the formula to figure out how long that same wall should be on the model:
Lm = (Ld x Y) / X Lm = (10 cm x 50) / 100 Lm = 5 cm
So the length of the wall on the model should be 5 centimeters.
To simplify this formula even further, we can use a recalculation coefficient called k:
k = Y/X
We can then use the formula:
Lm = Ld x k
In this case, k would be:
k = 50/100 k = 0.5
So we can use this formula to figure out the length of the wall on the model:
Lm = 10 cm x 0.5 Lm = 5 cmSo we get the same answer!
I hope this helps you understand how scales work in model making, and how we can use math to figure out the size of a model based on its scale.