Friday, April 18, 2008

Serenity: Bracing

Another minor progress update. Last night I spent time figuring out how the side engines are going to mount to the larger model.

Of course, I'm going to try and follow the detailing of the movie as close as possible - but there's a big difference between a CGI model and a LEGO model that has to support its own weight...

First off, though, was building a stronger base for the plates that will make the "skin" of the engine. (Remember- it has a hollow interior to try and keep things as light as possible.)

Basically I just enhanced each 1x2 click-hinge pieces with a 2x3 plate and two 1x2 bricks - the skin will seal these blocks with plenty of strength for what they need to support.

The larger blocks with the half-stud offset also got a redesign not shown here. Rather than using the very hard to find 1x2 click-hinge plates with offset tabs, I found a way to mount things to the support beams with a common 1x2 click-hinge brick. This is key, as I still need to build a second ring at the bottom of each side engine to complete the bracing.

Speaking of bracing, here's the first part of the mounting bracket. The red bricks are a solid pillar of 2x6 bricks that connect the front and back braces. The grey 2x2 underneath is what will have to become the main support line - the "twist and turn" nature of the side engines means that when in "normal out the sides" mode, 90% of the weight is going to rest on those bricks. (The piston like brace seen in the movies is the real world analog)

I'd like to build some technic gearing to allow the brace here to rotate - allowing for real world posing. Not my strongest building area, but you have to learn sometime...


Jordan said...

It annoys me a little bit when peices are meant to be the same colour but aren't because of age. Like the 1x4 tiles on the air foils or click pins for the cowling but I guess serenity is a mucky ship so it doesn't really matter.

Christopher Doyle said...


A lot of the color variation you're seeing is the "old" greys that LEGO produced vs. their new "blue-grey" mix. My workshop doesn't have the best lighting so the two tend to get mixed and used willy-nilly. The only bricks that I've had real problems with due to age are the whites - they become almost tan in the wrong conditions.

The only advantage of my having to order a ton of tiles to cover Serenity4 is that they should all color match in the final version.