Friday, 30 July 2010

"Impressive. Most impressive."

20 pages long, but this thread is relating the recreation of the EIGHT FOOT long Star Destroyer - using all the correct kit parts.
Can't even begin to think what this lot'll have cost:

Thursday, 29 July 2010

UFO Lunar Module - weathering

Off i go with the fun part then.
I'm basing my weathering on this studio model which, oddly, has much heavier work on one side than the other. So they could choose which to go for?
Anyway, i'm building it up - but not sure the covering up of the detail like this is the way to go. So might take it off and go for a lighter over all shade.

Monday, 26 July 2010

UFO Lunar Module - factory finish

Pulling together now and really looking forward to the dirtying down stage

Friday, 23 July 2010

UFO Lunar Module - toning down

That's a relief - with panels picked out in pencil, decals on and a coat of Matt Varnish, the shade changes to what i was after. Not put on the silver decals that go along the leading edges at the front as they're basically representing metals areas, and i can paint them myself.

Thursday, 22 July 2010

German Satellite - getting close now

So here we are with the basecoat done and now i've started on the pastelling. Only done the upper area so far as i'm using the lower as a handle while i do it.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

UFO Lunar Module - red

After doing a bit of asking around, it seems the most common colour to use for this ship is "Rover Blaze". Been to Halfords and - i dunno. It seems too orange and too darn dark to my eyes.
So, decided to go with this "Volkswagon Mars Red". Garish i know, but am planning matt varnish and heavy weathering will tone it right down.

Liberator - getting started

So, this is the main body, to which you can see i've been cutting out tiny blocks to add in-line with each of the vanes on the front part.
You can also get a good idea of just how small this kit is. I was prepared for that, as i remember my last one real well, but what i wasn't prepared for (think i must've blanked it) is the sheer fiddliness of cutting out and putting on the microscopic brass etched probes.
Dreading that.
You can also see quite a prominent seamline. That's not a prob as the Solar Panels will be covering up the front section and the struts that hold the "weapon pods" rather cleverly are attached to a base which totally covers up the rear section.

Monday, 19 July 2010

Earl's Court Film & TV Convention

Popped up to London to see this yesterday. Had great fun and there was plenty to buy, but only came away with the UFO Technical Manual (wonder why?) and the Hammer book (never really mentioned here as they don't fit in, but always been a MASSIVE fan of the studios), both from the publishers stall for 60% off.
Which was nice.
Plenty of Celebs there and it was interesting to gauge who's popular by the length of their queues and how much they charge for autographs.
A bonus was meeting up with Ken Colley. I've known him for a few years now, starting with seeing him on a train one day, thinking "That's Admiral Piett", going across and having a chat. It came up in conversation how i was a Cinema Projectionist and he sounded me out on my site maybe premiering his first film he'd directed.
Anyway, it became a bizarro situation where we did indeed premiere it, with TV and radio coverage and me becoming his PR Guy for the project, taking calls on me mobile from Admiral Piett practically every day.
Here you go with a pic of Ken, me and Priscilla, one of my Projection team on the day.
Back to the show and the highlight was the amount of folk attending in costume. Top notch stuff, especially the brilliant efforts from the R2D2 Builders Club.
Some things i learnt:
You can never have enough Colonial Marines,
bright pink for Clone Trooper armour doesn't really work,
David Tennant Who outfits are still popular,
only Matt Smith can pull off the look,
don't be Batman if you're under 6 foot,
don't be Bobba Fett if you're on the portly side,
the girl who plays Galactica's Starbuck is TINY,
Terminator 3's T3 is drop dead gorgeous in the flesh,
the Batman Begins Batmobile is SO much more impressive up close,
what works in an Anime doesn't always work in the real world.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Comet's Liberator

On a bit of a Blake's 7 kick right now and therefore have a few projects lined up.
Two of them are scratchbuilt recreations of a couple of the lesser known craft. More on them later, once i've ammassed a lot of the parts needed (realised with the Gateway Shuttle project that its not good to start posting something then leave it an eternity before an update).
But first up is the Liberator.
Built one of these when they first came out but lost it during a house move. Been meaning to get another for a long time, and would rather go for one of the bigger resin versions. But (A) space is getting REAL limited now (B) have had my fill of working with resin for a while.
So picked up the far simpler IP one from Comet, which benefits from being the most accurate, being made using the actual 3 foot version as reference, and much smaller.
And, boy, is it smaller - as you'll soon see.
Anyway, an hour with it got me this far.

UFO Lunar Module - grey

All primed and looking mighty fine. Small glitch is the loss of some of the panel lines around the area where i filled the join between the two hull halves and rubbed down. Will be easy enough though to scribe them back in with a scalpel

German Satellite - shades of grey

Been umming and ahhing over just what colour scheme to go with here. First plan was just Grey Primer with a bit of highlighting.
Tried that - but it seemed just too dark compared to the supplied still.
Decided to lighten it up by giving an overspray of white. Trouble with that is it can look just like what it is.
So what i've done - and you can see on the Conning Tower in the background here - is lay some black washes in the deepest detail areas, then lightly spray the grey again over that, then the whole thing gets the overspray of white.
I've found that by doing that you get some nice black contrast to the rather white/grey combo.
In the foreground is the main hull with the black washes on. Looks crude i know, but it'll be better soon.

Thursday, 15 July 2010

UFO Lunar Module - ready for primer

Well, that took no time at all. The engine bell area was dead easy - the main part, two plastic tubes cut to size and glued in, and the tiny horizontal braces top and bottom.
Then its a case of superglueing the ribbed section on top, put the engine bell on and finally a couple of tiny pieces on the rear.
And that really is it.
What a nice refreshing change.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

UFO Lunar Module - body

Only landed yesterday morning but already off and running with it.
Main reason is that Ricardo's given me no prep work to do at all and i could crack right on. Here's the two parts for the main body glued together with Araldite Rapid and the very small gap filled with P38 and rubbed down.
Didn't wash the parts before i started as i figured they'd need a good soaking after i'd dealt with the filler.
So here they are drying.
For the next part, the instuctions say to trim the clear vac-form canopy to fit the part seen here. Then either cut the front of this part away and paint it black if you want to see inside or just paint the inside of the canopy black.
Then stick the combined piece to where you can the two bumps in the first pic. Then it'd be a matter of using the supplied template to cut out some masking tape to mask off the window area.
Must say, wasn't looking forward to that bit.
But then i got the resin piece out the bag and, as you might be able to see here, the windows are actually scribed into it.
So, not going with the clear piece at all and my windows i'll just be picking out on this piece in gloss black

Monday, 12 July 2010

Dragonfly Ship - almost there

Which is just as well - got two more projects soon to be taking up all me time.
Anyway, here we are with her in the middle of dirtying down. The Bronze came round the other day and said he prefers it without the wings.
Which has sewn a seed of doubt whether to put them on or not.

UFO Lunar Module

This beauty of kit landed safely today. By Moon Visions, Ricardo has oudone himself - flawless resin castings, mixed media, vac-form canopy and a VERY comprehensive decal sheet.
It'll build to about 9 inches when done - which won't take long as there's gonna be no prepwork and the excellent instructions show very clearly and brilliantly how everything goes together.
Courtesy of the Starship Modeller reference section, here's how it'll look. SO looking forward to having this, my favourite UFO craft after the UFO.

Saturday, 10 July 2010

Louie - all done.

Had great fun with this fella and he's built up into a nice, easy to fit on the shelf, representation of a kit from one of my favourite films.
Fancy a Valley Forge now...

Friday, 9 July 2010

Gasp! A clean bench

Yes indeed. Finally reached breaking point where i just couldn't stand the amount of kit parts, boxes, paper and junk heaped up on the bench, with just a little corner clear for me to work on. So, for the first time in about 5 years, i've taken everything off, cleaned it all up and now only have the projects that i aim to finish soon on it.
Also tidied up my big shelf for spaceships - which is starting to look like the graveyard in Space 1999's "Dragons Domain".

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Happy birthday me - and Mat Irvine

Rather chuffed to find i share my birthday with another modelling hero from my childhood - Mat Irvine.
Really feel that, for far too long, the BBC Effects department has had an "Aw, bless" attitude from folk - cheaply made models shot crudely.
And to an extent that's true.
But dig a bit deeper (watch various extras on Doctor Who DVD's, read any of Mat's excellent modelling books) and you find the crew were up against the most hideous odds, be it budget or deadlines.
Personally, its a miracle they pulled off what they did.
And they did it with such enthusiasm, best personified by Mat, especially on his regular Swapshop apperances.
As i say, a real role model of mine, someone who was funny, passionate about his craft and very talented.
And the more i read about him - whether its his real space modelwork for documentaries and the news, Blake's 7, Doctor Who and many others, the more i respect his body of work.
Hopefully, with the upcoming Beeb SPFX book, he finally be acknowledged for his contribution.
Happy birthday Mat.

His website:

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Dragonfly Ship - shiny

Top pick has an awful flare to it as the paint is just so darn shiny.
Bit better in the next pic, which is it after decals and a coat of Matt Varnish to seal 'em.
Hopefully will be duller even more after i've sealed in the next step - pastels.