Help For Building Large Star Ships

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Help For Building Large Star Ships

Postby Natalya » Fri Oct 17, 2008 4:10 pm

Okay so james+burgundy is having a large star ship contest which a lot of you expressed interest in, but lamented at not having enough parts to build something large enough to qualify. Well, as the local expert on building large star ships I figured I could leave you with some tricks for building these things even if you don't have a ton of pieces.


If you look at the ship I built, you'll notice that it's constructed in a fairly standard fashion. Bricks on top of eachother normally, right angles in places.

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This is not the optimal construction technique for building a star ship. This uses a lot of bricks and makes it quite hard to get angled and varied shapes onto your ship. It also makes the ship very heavy. You'll notice that most of the things not done at right angles on the ship are not structurally important pieces, and that they make the ship look way better than if they weren't there. Additionally they were built with some SNOT techniques.

Here you have the cannon nose which was constructed with Technic bricks:
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Or the rear stabilizers and armour plates which were done with Technic as well.
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Technic is great for angling stuff, and angles always make a ship look better, unless you're a dimmy and put them on the inside where no one can see them. D:

But knowing just that doesn't help you to build a large ship if you're low on parts. But what can help you is that if you build entire sections of the ships hull in this manner you can cut down on parts by using plate walls instead of normal brick walls. For example, the Asmodeus:

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I reference this ship a lot because it was built with great technique. The ship is massive but you don't find much traditional brick on top of brick construction. Instead, the walls are made with plates hung at angles by a Technic frame on the inside.

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Now if you don't have a lot of Technic, a good substitute is the Star Wars hinge pieces. You can do the same thing with them, although it might be a little flimsier. For a new ship I'm working on, a Czech-Republican battle barge, I will be using this technique because I have a lot of plates but not enough regular bricks to complete the ship. Here are some pictures:

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See, good angles and walls, but held up by Star Wars hinges not standard construction. This also makes it easier to add detail to the outside of your ship. There are holes between the plates because I want to put ramps in those spots to disembark from the ship. Right now it's clearly not gotten very far, but the section you're looking at will be a sort of neck between the front and the back main cargo and engineering sections.


So yeah, I hope this helps you. Making walls out of plates instead of bricks will save a lot of parts, let you angles the walls which looks sexy, will make the ship lighter, and will let you put detail on the sides more easily as well.

Other members please feel free to post your own advice for anything you may find helpful -- like how to build weapon turrets or engines, anything you can think of.
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Postby Thyclaine » Fri Oct 17, 2008 6:23 pm

Would you kindly direct me towards a peeron page of those Star Wars hinges?
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Postby pesgores » Fri Oct 17, 2008 7:15 pm

Those advices are really good.

But the use of the word sexy is kinda...out of the context.
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Postby Bonn-o-Tron » Fri Oct 17, 2008 8:25 pm

Sweet, yo. That's some nice advice.

pesgores wrote:But the use of the word sexy is kinda...out of the context.


I disagree!
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Re: Help For Building Large Star Ships

Postby james+burgundy » Fri Oct 17, 2008 8:53 pm

NatalyaAF wrote:Well, as the local expert on building large star ships
no just cuz you posted a ship does not make you the expert ! the so called " local expert on building large star ships" will only be know after the contest because there are other people who can and have made big ships just they did not post pics

so no going around say im the expert on ships :x
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Postby Bonn-o-Tron » Fri Oct 17, 2008 9:13 pm

She definitely knows a lot more about building ships than the rest of us, so I think that she's Honorary Ship Expert for now. Even if someone does beat her in this contest, she'll still be reliable for ship building knowledge
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Postby Blitzen » Fri Oct 17, 2008 9:17 pm

No one has made a counter-claim except you, JB, and I doubt anyone will. You just love getting riled up over nothing, don't you? Natalya is as expert as we've seen.

james+burgundy wrote:so no going around say im the expert on ships :x

Don't worry; you'll be forever inferior to Natalya in terms of SHIP building skills.
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Postby Dr. X » Fri Oct 17, 2008 9:27 pm

Bonn-o-Tron wrote:She definitely knows a lot more about building ships than the rest of us, so I think that she's Honorary Ship Expert for now. Even if someone does beat her in this contest, she'll still be reliable for ship building knowledge


RAYHAAAAAAAWK!!! GET YOUR BUTT OVER TO THE 'CREATE TITLE' BUTTON!!

Honorary SHIP expert is perfect.

And nice ideas, Natalya, especially the part-saving plate one.

On the subject of part-saving, I saw at BrickCon a giant cargo ship, and the sides were made out of not plates, but baseplates. This is really part-saving, because you can get a huge amount of area (32 x 32) with ONE part. And also, if you think they're hard to attach to things, I'll give you a hint: attach using the sides of the baseplate.
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Postby james+burgundy » Fri Oct 17, 2008 10:09 pm

wish i could have gone to BrickCon :cry: :cry: :cry: :cry:
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Postby pesgores » Sat Oct 18, 2008 4:52 am

Bonn-o-Tron wrote:Sweet, yo. That's some nice advice.

pesgores wrote:But the use of the word sexy is kinda...out of the context.


I disagree!


I disagree.
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Postby Theblackdog » Sat Oct 18, 2008 6:50 am

Thanks Natalaya for the handy lesson. I'd also like to point out these hinges:
http://www.peeron.com/inv/parts/48171
They're a bit stronger than SW click hinges, and they can make a wider range of different angles. I've used them to great effect in the past, and without them the ship I'm currently working on wouldn't be possible.
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Postby Natalya » Sat Oct 18, 2008 1:47 pm

james+burgundy wrote:
NatalyaAF wrote:Well, as the local expert on building large star ships
no just cuz you posted a ship does not make you the expert ! the so called " local expert on building large star ships" will only be know after the contest because there are other people who can and have made big ships just they did not post pics

so no going around say im the expert on ships :x


Seeing as no one else here has yet built a large ship except for me I think that justifies my claim for the time being. Maybe that will change with the contest though.

@ black dog:
I have never seen that part before but it looks quite useful.

@ pesgores:
Sexy is always a relevant term.

@ Dr. X
Yes baseplates are effective as well but only if the ship is truly massive can you use them.
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Postby Dr. X » Sat Oct 18, 2008 3:00 pm

Yes, massive will only work for that method. The ship at the Con was almost five feet long, and used the baseplates partly for walls and partly for large cargo boxes.
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Postby Adean » Sat Oct 18, 2008 3:06 pm

Yay! Thanks for all the info Natalia. Now I just have to figure out how to use these techniques. Anyways, thanks again.
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Postby Theblackdog » Sat Oct 18, 2008 5:08 pm

NatalyaAF wrote:@ black dog:
I have never seen that part before but it looks quite useful.


Thanks. You get a lot of them in Creator sets, LEGO Factory, and just about any set which includes PBB animals. 4998 Stegosaurus has a lot of them.
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