First Contact Borg Cube- Studio scale-ish... 50CM3


Sr Member
Hello all... FINALLY, while I am working on other projects. I have decided to finally start the Borg Cube.
So as some may know I'm loosing my home and will be moving at some point... But the house sale has now been delayed to February so I have decided to get this thing started with the aim to do most of the build over the Christmas period.

This really is going to be a whole host of mix media, ill be making a lot of use of my laser cutter, cutting perspex and mdf parts. Ill also be doing some 3D prints for greebles, ill even be doing some resin pours to make multiples of those greebles.

Im going to be home electro etching brass to make many of the fine detailed brass parts.

And I'm going to make myself go slowly mad gluing everything together and figuring out how to put literally thousands of parts together!

So first things first. Its Studio Scale... ish... From what I understand the First contact filming model was roughly 65CM cubed. Ill be reducing that size a bit to 50CM, as I felt this is a reasonable scale for me to build for.

The goal is to make a First Contact style Borg Cube, as there is so many random details, its going to be impossible to make a perfect replica. So the goal is to make something that actually looks like the model. There have been many born miniatures made in the past by several talented artists, but very few IMHO seem to lack that First Contact aesthetic. This is something I hope to get close to.

Outside of the basic frame and support structure, its going to pretty much artistic licence throughout. Ill be gluing and figuring out where things go as I build it.

This last few years there has been a flood of new high res photos of the filming model, and thanks to the amazing replies in the thread here...

Ive been able to start putting a library of greebles and parts together.

Once this is completed Ill be putting a video together to go onto my youtube, and I will make the various design files I've made available through my super support tier on my patreon.

And I will be posting a host of step by step wip photos here :)

Like I say I will be doing the majority of the work over Christmas. But Today I got started with building the core frame.






Starting with designing the frame in Fusion360, to see how it would all work. I then ordered Alu lengths from B&Q.... and they then delivered the wrong sized L extrusions.... So I had to redesign the core frame :D Anyway after the changes I messured up, then started cutting the strips. And this evening I managed to braze weld the alu strips into these squares...
Tomorrow I will turn these into a cube!

My blow torch is a bit ****... It actually takes a surprisingly long time to get the alu hot enough for the brazing rod to melt.

The plan so far, is to build this frame and have the protruding rods as seen in the third render.

With right angle brackets attached as seen in the twitter post above, ill have a base to fit a frame structure for each layer of the cube. The internal layers will be fairly basic, with all the real detail being put on the top layer. But some of this will certainly be a case of figuring it out as I go...


I have also traced what I can of the references and built a bunch of A4 brass etch masks that I would use to electro etch...
And yes I know, the masks are currently inverted... Ill fix that soon :)

There are a few more greebly shapes I need to draw up that I noticed more recently. But I think I have enough to make the model at least convincing...

A bit later I also plan to design and build a motion control rig for a camera, And I will then do some VFX recreations with the model :D

Anyway thats all for now. I will update as things progress!
So heres an over due update on whats been happening with this build.... Ive been fairly good at keeping updates on twitter... but been neglecting here... SOOooooo
In the last episode I showed design files, but NOW I have parts to start showing.

I was going to use an IKEA Lack table to place this model onto, but I felt the table wouldnt take the weight. So I ordered a bunch of wood, learnt that when you order planed wood, the size shown is the original pre planed size and not the final size.... Oh well.... But managed to work with what I got.

I took some time between working on the table, and starting to make the aluminium frame.





I also found an old sheet of acrylic from when I was 12 years old.......... im 41 D:

It came out of an old lightbox I took apart, and draw a bunch of lcars on it to play with >.> ...

Anyway I felt it fitting to clean the paint and sharpie ink off the acrylic and use this as the defuser for the lightbox at the core of the cube!

Ive also been doing some 3D design to print off some greebles....

I also modelled the hatch though Im not going to make a mechanism for it to open. So probably will print it as a solid part.

I will print off the greebles, and build up some of the more panelly bits, ill then make moulds to duplicate some of them to build up the platey bits... :D

Ill soon be laser cutting the frames and begin building up the model :)

Ive also received a bunch of SMD leds that have been pre wired up. So Im also going to be placing some small spot lights within the panels.

The aim is still not to make a perfect replica. But something you look at and instantly recognise as an accurate borg cube.

Im also going to add some extra details in some areas such as painting.
Ill be adding a bit of ambient occlusion dirt, and some panel paint work...

Anyway, thats all for now. Sorry this isnt the best post im half distracted :p
Hope you like the progress :)
Last edited:
Yes it is, would be so cool to see it automated. That was an awesome scene. Of course then you have to build a little Borg Sphere, ; )
Your light-box core is similar to how we did the movie model. It didn't have a frame like yours- it was just a milky plex box. We didn't want a frame to block the light. Your frame will give all the layers a better support to hang on though.
Your light-box core is similar to how we did the movie model. It didn't have a frame like yours- it was just a milky plex box. We didn't want a frame to block the light. Your frame will give all the layers a better support to hang on though.
I felt given the layers that the corners/ edges of the cube not getting light from the box light wouldnt really be an issue. Though Ill be putting a few leds between layers too, so if I feel those edges are too dark, I could place one in there to add some ambient light.

Also really glad you found my WIP thread :D
Ohhh I guessed pretty close from the pics then. The inside hatch on mines about 4 inches, the whole prints about 6.
With my cube aiming to be about 50 to 55cm that's about right. Yours was 60 to 65cm right?
I noticed twitter embedded videos are broken again... blaim elon!
Im about to mount the other first layer frames on, ill video something and upload it to imgur then embed here :)

Your message may be considered spam for the following reasons:

If you wish to reply despite these issues, check the box below before replying.
Be aware that malicious compliance may result in more severe penalties.