Fine Molds 1/72 Millennium Falcon

Discussion in 'General Modeling' started by Alaneye, Jan 6, 2012.

  1. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    I preordered one of these kits as soon as I found out they were going to re-release it back in October I think it was. It arrived early December but went away for Christmas. Now I finally have it in my hands and what a beauty she is. I've familiarized myself with the other builds going on and finished out there and have taken the first few tentative steps to bring this kit to life. Inspired by Dana Jan's Building the Falcon blog, I'm going to attempt to customise the kit with bits of styrene etc to give this already incredibly detailed kit that extra bit more. Although I built model kits when I was much younger I have never attempted anything like this before and I just hope it's all going to turn out well. For better or worse I'll document the build
    So first things first... ta-daaaaa

    [​IMG]

    It's an impressively dimensioned box, and heavier than you might expect from a plastic kit.

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    The first of the colourfully printed illustration shows the FM kit plus a montage of shots of the studio model.

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    Next we have another sheet showing the positions of the decals, should you choose the use them.

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    First view of the kit itself.

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    And all those 900 parts... we may be here sometime.
    I hadn't intended to make a start on it yet, but I couldn't help myself. First thing I did was to take out all the hull notches with a square needle file.

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    About a hour or so later it was all done.

    Top.

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    Bottom.

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    The next thing I felt like trying, was the correcting of the panel lines on the two docking/escape hatches. I'd already seen this on a blog called Building the Falcon. For some reason I can't quite fathom, FM put straight panel lines all around the outer ring when even their own reference photos shows them with differing details. I'm not going to be * about trying to get this 100% correct as long as it looks close and good.

    I began by studying the all the photo reference I had found and used Aves Apoxie putty to fill in the lines where I felt they were wrong. I left that over night and then sanded it down with 320 grit paper. Next I penciled in new lines and used a Tamiya panel scriber to scribe them in. This proved to be much more difficult than I'd imagined. Also the Aves crumbled out of the lines in places. I had some Revell plastic filler so tried that and had more success. Then I cut some small squares of sheet styrene and glued them on in various positions to match the reference as much as possible. I also scribed in a sort of 'L' shaped panel I could see in the reference.

    I didn't take any pics before I started, but here it is from top and bottom with the scribed lines and the bits of styrene. I didn't get it as good as I would have liked, but it's all a learning curve for me at the moment.

    [​IMG]

    And then I primed it to see if it looked okay when it was all one colour. It looked much better then I thought it would and the primer really sharpens up the detail.

    [​IMG]

    So far I'm pleased with the tiny bit of progress I've made and if anyone out there sees me doing anything the hard way, please give me a shout and put me straight. Now, on to the other one :)
     
  2. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    I completed the 2nd docking hatch. At first I was going to make them identical, but on checking the reference, it seems they aren't identical. After looking around the photos of both the 23" and the 5 foot studio models, I found a pic showing detail I liked from the cockpit side of the ship. It's probably the 5 footer, but as I'm not fussed about it being completely accurate to the 32" model (which I believe FM photographed as reference) I decided to use it. This one was more fiddley still, but it's all good fun.

    [​IMG]

    And here's a shot of it positioned on the model.

    [​IMG]

    I also realised I'd missed filing out the notches on the access areas in the top and bottom of the hull, so I did that today as well

    Another thing I'd seen Dana Jan do on "Building the Falcon" was to remove the struts along the slants of the two walk ways and replace them with styrene 'T' pieces.

    The struts looked pretty good as they were, but Jan's idea gives it a bit more relief.

    [​IMG]

    So I first trimmed them of with my Xacto knife. I bought some chizel type blades with this in mind but I had to be careful because I was trimming right to the flat plates and the corners of the blade could cut into the hull. It did a few time, once deep enough that I had to fill it, but I guess the beauty of this model is that the odd nick isn't really going to matter since the Falcon is meant to be so beat up.

    Here it is with the moulded struts trimmed off. I've detailed one side had this is the first of the 'T' pieces on the other side.

    [​IMG]

    I angled the first cut so the strut sat flush with the hull, then trimmed the top, and here it is all done.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Did the tops of both walkways. Some of these pieces are incredibly small

    [​IMG]

    I lost that piece 3 times... I have no idea how I managed to find it again. Here are before and after pictures of both sides. I don't think there is much to do in the way of customization with these areas, but I'll give the reference a good looking over to see if there is anything I can add.

    Cockpit side:

    [​IMG]

    Other side:

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    A little more progress. I worked on the topside mandible. Here it is untouched:

    [​IMG]

    Here with the standard greeblies added:

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    And here again with details added that I could see on the 32" studio model.

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    One of the Fine Molds' parts is far too small when looking at the reference, so I cut a piece of sprue and made a new one.

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    Here is my new one and the one supplied by Fine Moulds still on the sprue.

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    And here is it on the model along with some more fiddly greeblies that Dana Jan had give a heads up on. I could see them on the reference but they are not included by Fine Molds for what ever reason. I also extended the pipe on the right up the side of the mandible.

    [​IMG]

    I also noticed that at the far end of the mandibles, there was a difference between the FM model and the 32" studio model. So I fashioned a few little bits and pieces and matched as best I could.

    [​IMG]

    Finally, there are some bits and pieces on the front of the mandilbes that make it look a bit more interesting.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. darth_daniel

    darth_daniel Sr Member

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    Awesome work! I´ll keep an eye on this as I also have this model waiting. And I had promised myself I´d not do any corrections on it since all my other models take so long due to modifications... :lol

    Could you post a link to the blog you mentioned? Thanks!
     
  6. fraley1701

    fraley1701 Member

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    You have a great eye for detail! This build will be fun to follow and I am sure it will turn out amazing. I would like to read the blog you reference as well.

    :thumbsup
     
  7. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Thanks guys, hopefully it will be a fun build. The Building the Falcon blog I talked about is at:

    Building the Falcon: May 2006

    It's a great inspiration to do great work. If I can get mine looking anywhere near like that I will be very pleased.
     
  8. tek2graphics

    tek2graphics Well-Known Member

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    Nice! Love the fact you are posting the progress with lots of picks! Thanks!
    Will keep a close eye on this!
     
  9. crackerjazz

    crackerjazz Sr Member

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    Can't get enough of Falcon builds - always brings a smile to my face.
     
  10. Scratchy

    Scratchy Well-Known Member

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    Very nice detailing. I think you're going to spend a lot of worth while time on this build, just by the work you've done on the first set of pics.
     
  11. Noumcea

    Noumcea Active Member

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    Lovely attention to detail. I will be following this buid for sure !!!
     
  12. Dedalus5550

    Dedalus5550 Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    I looked at that blog yesterday. It seems to end like 5 years ago with the Falcon incomplete. Am I missing something? Also, I got a hint that the radar dish he made would be available since he mentions making a mold of it--though that could just be for his friend whom he said was going to be making one concurrently with him. Was that dish ever available?
     
  13. Dedalus5550

    Dedalus5550 Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    If you look, you'll find other details and shape issues that differ with their own photos they include in the box. There are several suggested reasons for this. In the case of the "docking rings"--if for no other reason--it might just be an issue of molding. If they tried to get the panel lines right, it would have been soft detail at best because of the way the parts have to slide out of the mold--the way details on jets get soft or lost around the sides of the fuselage (or top and bottom, depending on the way the kit is engineered).
     
  14. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the encouragement guys :)


    As far as I know it was never made available and I still don't know why Dana never finished his build. He and PHArchivist were friends at the time, both doing builds and they had a thread going at:

    http://www.therpf.com/f11/building-falcon-7548/

    Unfortunately the links to PHArchivist's photos have expired.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012
  15. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I've been taking a look at the two areas above the docking rings to see if there were any extra bits and pieces to add as I didn't check at the time. There are quite a few differences between that and the studio model, one being the area around the vent... but they obviously did it so they could use the same part for both sides. If I'd checked the reference before hand I might have tried making it more accurate. Anyway, it's still all looking good :)

    Edit: * it, just found the reason for the differences around the vents is that one should have gone one way and the other should have gone the other way! Ah well.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012
  16. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Just a few added greeblies

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  17. masterjedi322

    masterjedi322 Sr Member

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    Looking good so far! :thumbsup As I have one of these on my back burner, I'll be watching this one!

    Sean
     
  18. rob8821

    rob8821 New Member

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    wow with such tiny parts....what a project but i am sure that it will come out top notch....
     
  19. Tony

    Tony Well-Known Member

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    Are you also going to correct the angle of those Mandibles and the top and bottomside jawboxes? Your doing great work with all the other little details but the mandibles and jawboxes are the major undertakings.
     
  20. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Hi, Tony, nah, I'm not going to be trying to correct the mandibles or jawboxes. It's one thing adding bits of detail here and there, but as you say, the mandibles are a big undertaking and I'd likely screw it up :D
     
  21. Qrest Fourstar

    Qrest Fourstar Sr Member

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    Always love another FM falcon build diary.

    I have also folllowed Dan's. Ive got it saved on my harddrive.
     
  22. Geber Teg

    Geber Teg New Member

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    Beautiful work! I'm gonna follow this one.
     
  23. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Thanks everyone who's following :)

    A little progress. I've built the sub-assemblies that go in the access holes on the mandibles and added the detail parts on the mandibles (or are they the jaws, not sure). Anyway, some pics :)

    The one on the far right needed the most extra detailing, I think you can make out the white styrene. The second in from the right needed the strip with all the circles on it so I made one with strips of styrene and slices of brass tubing.

    [​IMG]

    After priming. The far right one looks really detailed. I may add a few extra pipes and panels to the others yet.

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    Left side with other details in place. I did a little customizing here and there too.

    [​IMG]

    And likewise the right side.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2012
  24. STEVE THE SWEDE

    STEVE THE SWEDE Sr Member

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    Sweet! I have mine stacked away in the cellar, been there for years. Seing your work REALLY makes my fingers itch! Already looking forward to your next update!

    Cheers,

    Steve.
     
  25. tek2graphics

    tek2graphics Well-Known Member

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    Looks beautiful! What are you using for primer? Can or airbrush?
     
  26. Underdog

    Underdog Sr Member

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    I'm sorry, but I have to ask... "How * is too *"?...... Have you ever seen a studio model? Hey, if you're trying recapture the PERFECT falcon,,,, I just don't get it. It's supposed to be a cobbled together freighter..
     
  27. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. It's just Halford's own brand auto primer. Seems to work well.
     
  28. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    :lol Well, I wrote that just after I'd started the build so I wasn't sure how far I was going to go. I guess I mean I'm not too bothered about using little details I can see on both the 32" and 5ft studio models, if I like the look of it. In the access points I even added a few little details that I made up myself. So it's not so much I'm aiming to capture the 'perfect' Falcon, but more a model that is bristling with fine detail and looks great to the eye, even though it might not be 100% accurate to either studio model.
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2012
  29. matrox75

    matrox75 New Member

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    kind of makes me want to brush the dust off my FM kit and continue. Nice detailing!
     
  30. tek2graphics

    tek2graphics Well-Known Member

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    I'm all for making it your own! :love Just makes it more interesting!
    Great job so far! :thumbsup

     
  31. ozzyguanche

    ozzyguanche Sr Member

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    Being a Falcon fan as I am, I am enjoying your thread greatly.

    Great detail work, The extras look like they should be there! Thats what you want to achieve and that's what you have done.

    looking forward to rest.

    Ozzy
     
  32. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Did you stall on it? For how long? I'm afraid of that happening with me.
     
  33. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, that means a lot since this is the first time I have attempted anything like this :)
     
  34. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Cheers for that. I worked some on it today and again I have been referencing the 5 foot model and using detail I can see on it. I am rationalizing it by thinking this build was somewhere in between the movies :lol

    Anyway, here is the back of the cargo bay as built (apart from a channel I've taken out of the left side where the pipes went).

    [​IMG]

    Then here with some detailing from the 5 foot model.

    [​IMG]

    I could do with some good pix of the insides of the cargo bay if anyone has some.

    A bit of pipework on the starboard side of the ship.

    [​IMG]

    Again referencing the 5 footer for the most part, I added more detail I liked to the upper jaw.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2012
  35. tek2graphics

    tek2graphics Well-Known Member

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    VERY NICE!!! Makes me want to start mine!
     
  36. Scratchy

    Scratchy Well-Known Member

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    That is some nice work so far.
     
  37. darth_daniel

    darth_daniel Sr Member

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    That looks great.

    But I wonder, is all this detailing also missing when you´d replicate the 32" model? I haven´t looked at any MF reference pics so far because I won´t start mine for a while, but I had hoped the FM kit would be good enough so I can build it OOB, which I haven´t done for years...

    Got to admit though, I really like what you´re doing to yours. :)
     
  38. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    No time like the present :)

    Cheers, Scratchy, you being the expert you are on customizing and all, thanks very much. The work you are doing on the 1/144 is insane! :)

    Some of it is missing, but I'm sure you can build it OOB and it will still be a stunning kit, the detail OOB is crisp and as you add the pieces it just looks better and better. I can't wait to prime it so all the extra pieces tie in together. I might mask it off and prime that middle jaw later just to see how it looks.

    I have been having a bit of trouble with the cement. It comes through a metal tube and even the drop it delivers is sometimes way too much for the tiny pieces of styrene I'm adding which then means I have to clean up around the part later. I've tried getting some on the end of a tooth pick but somtimes I end up with not enough on it and the piece isn't secure. Any tips from the kit building experts out there, or is it just a matter of practice?
     
  39. darth_daniel

    darth_daniel Sr Member

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    I have the same glue problems, but I´ve built models for 10 years and it hasn´t changed. I use Revell glue. I usually press the bottle until a drop of glue hangs on the tube´s tip, if it´s too much, I´ll wipe it off the tube with a piece of toilet paper, if not, I´ll apply it to the part.
    The room I build in is not frequently used by the other family members so usually it´s not heated, when I start building the glue is fine. Then I turn on the heating and the warmer it becomes the more glue will come from the tube. So it´s a temperature thing as well. I´ve never tried it with my model building glues, but at work, we´ve kept superglue in the fridge. Maybe try if it helps.
     
  40. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Ah, as long as there's not some magical technique that I'm missing. Yeah, I'm using the Revell glue too. There is a glue that comes with a brush, Dana mentioned it on his blog, but I wasn't able to find it.

    Al
     
  41. Scratchy

    Scratchy Well-Known Member

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    I've used the Plastruct liquid cement, and the airfix liquid cement.... there's also another, I think it was called proweld or something or other.

    I've always used a small round brush and not the the brush that comes with the bottle. I'll used the liquid cement on the small details and styrene.

    I have the airfix glue that comes in a tube as well. When I use this glue, I'll squirt a small glob on a small piece of glass, then dip with a toothpick or thin brass rod and apply it to the part. Once the glue drys on the glass, I take razor blade and slice off the hardened glue.

    I like to try different brands until I find the one glue that works for me. So far I haven't had a problem with any of these.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2012
  42. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Plastruct, that's the one that Dana mentioned. Thanks for the advice.

    Anyway, I primed the upper jaw and the single colour really does tie it all together. It has that 'busy' look I'm trying for.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  43. JMChladek

    JMChladek Sr Member

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    Believe me, you can do the 1/72 Fine Molds Falcon out of the box and end up with an outstanding model as I've done it. The trick to it is a clean build and a first class paintjob. Of course, I will recommend going the liquid glue route as opposed to tube glue as the parts some of the parts are tiny and the last thing you want is glue globs that are bigger than some of the parts.

    What is being done to this Falcon though is just INSANE (in a good way mind you). I can't wait to see the finish.
     
    davetwin likes this.
  44. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Hahaha, tell me about it, when I'm cutting teeny tiny pieces of styrene and picking them up with the tip of my Exacto knife to glue them on I sometimes wonder what the hell I'm doing and will it be all worth it in the end.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2012
  45. Scratchy

    Scratchy Well-Known Member

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    Yes, it will be worth it. Just don't ease up on the details.
     
  46. ozzyguanche

    ozzyguanche Sr Member

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    Looks worth it to me.!!!!

    Blends in well with the other detail mate! Looks spot on.

    Ozzy
     
  47. Starsunder

    Starsunder New Member

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    I was just about to buy one of these kits myself, I will have to keep track of your progress.
     
  48. Watson

    Watson Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Fantastic work so far I love it
     
  49. Blade90

    Blade90 Member

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    Great work. Keep it up, my firend!
     
  50. Alaneye

    Alaneye Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. I've stalled a little on the build as I'm waiting for a couple of jars of Floquil Reefer White and Grime so I can spray the inserts before I screw and glue them in place. There's probably some other bits I could work on, but I've turned my attention to my Terminator sculpture

    http://www.therpf.com/f9/listen-understand-terminator-out-there-122896/index2.html

    I should be coming back to it soon though.
     

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