"Reddish Jammer" Y-Wing Build

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Studio Kitbash

Sr Member
If Kylo Ren had his own Y-Wing...

Full build thread coming soon -- just putting a placeholder here while it's in primer.

Thanks to everyone on the RPF who helped, and thanks to everyone who ignored me - that helped too, but in a different way.

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Studio Kitbash

Sr Member

This was one of my discoveries -- it REALLY is proportioned in the Golden Ratio, and I wrote a lengthy post about it somewhere on the threads that is still up somewhere. Joe Johnston, who finalized/improved/perfected Colin Cantwell's original design, did not originally know about or intend to design it to "golden ratio" proportions, and did not learn about the Golden Ratio until years later, but good design is good design and I think (my interpretation here) that one reason the Y-Wing is "so cool" and so visually compelling is precisely because it is so "perfectly" proportional.

Just looking at your avatar,...is the y-wing really porportioned in the golden ratio or is it photoshopped?
Good luck with your built!


Well-Known Member
Just read your post about it ,.this explains why i always found the y-wing design so pleasing to the eye.
Great post about all this by the way

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Studio Kitbash

Sr Member
To start, you need a good organizing system, which for me meant 1.) acquiring every model, 2.) casting every greeblie, 3.) organizing the greeblies into a drawer-filing system since I'd be building more than one. Keep a detailed list of notes and places where each greeblie goes, and what else from that model could be used elsewhere, and where there are interpretive differences between greeblie A and greeblie B.

Step Two: Use DaveG's mold-making and casting tutorial to get your resin casting skills, at least with one-piece molds, to the point where you are satisfied in your own ability to cast complex parts.

4 original greeblies in subassembly on left; casting of said subassembly on right. This took roughly 2 years to acquire this level of competence. My first castings were so bad they were unphotographable.

Step Three: Patience
The art of deferred gratification is the key to success in all of life, and not least of all in model building. The Internet has collectively guessed at these Star Wars prop greeblies, and Y-Wing specific greeblies, by my count, since at least 1998, or roughly 20 years, and we still have greeblies that are to this day, as-of-yet, unidentified. I have identified a (very) few, and I will share these along the way with this build thread, so you will be rewarded with some surprises for reading. But that will come WAY later in this thread. Meanwhile here is a look at how nurnie-obsessive my greebie-filing system has become:
I file by subject, scale, and importance/frequency of use in descending order on the vertical and horizontal axis. This way I can 'find what I'm looking for' by automatically knowing if it's a.) big or small, and b.) common or rare. As silly as this seems, it saves my brain a LOT of time in trying to find pieces/parts. As I've evolved my molding/casting, I'm now building subassemblies (like the one shown) rather than just casting individual greeblies, and this too saves a lot of time, but now requires an even larger-drawer system for organizing, which is currently under construction.

Finally, You Will Need Money. Do not be fooled, this is a ridiculously expensive hobby, and if I had known what I was getting into when I started, I would have never started building from scratch, and would instead have simply purchased one of the existing available kits molded by Neisen or others. The kits alone cost roughly $7500, and I found them everywhere from Ebay to Hobby Shops to Swap Meets to Model Shows. All told in model kits, and materials, and tools, I've spent around $10k in 2+ years. My logic is that I have to build more than one Y-Wing in order to a.) sell a few so that b.) I may keep a few. And I am hoping, when it's all said and done, to break even.

So you can think of this as a ten-thousand dollar build thread, that you get for free. Not a bad deal, right?

I am writing this not to tell you things you already know and have known for upwards of 20 years. I'm writing this to share a.) what I have learned along the way, b.) thank those who showed me some of the ropes, and c.) reveal a few of my surprising discoveries, lucky guesses, and/or just plain serendipitous happy accidents. But I would also like this thread to be something that was useful to you, so if in previous build thread(s) you learned X & Z but not enough about Y, please let me know what specifically you'd like emphasis on.

Studio Kitbash

Sr Member
The headpiece takes 29 plates on top, using 0.20" thick plastic card stock from Plastruct. I recommend super-gluing these on, as my idea of using Tamiya thin liquid cement (green bottle) did make the underside sticky/tacky, but when dry they popped off too easily from the Resin print of the headpiece. As a result, several of them had to be re-attached, and the rest are held on by a.) mild tackiness underneath the plate along with b.) two layers of primer and soon to be c.) a top layer of paint.

I'd also love it if DaveG or someone else handy with the 3D modeling software or just PhotoShop would make a laser-cut frisket of these plates in studio-scale-size, so that people could replicate the pieces more easily. I would happily pay for such a service.

fullsizeoutput_efa4.jpeg IMGP6983.JPG

I think I later went back and recounted and realized I was missing one more plate on the left side, and so the total count is 30 on the top side of fuselage head and canopy combined, though I seem to have forgotten to take a picture of it with Plate #30 on it. I also did these entirely by hand, and was not using a caliper or measuring tape of any sort, and just sort of eyeballing it, so a purist would want to take the overhead shot of Red Jammer from the Japanese Chronicles book and do a photoshop-perfect matching and then scale it up to life-size. 3 of the 30 pieces are not Plastruct plate, but are Holgate & Reynolds brick pattern, these are the tan-colored pieces in the pix.

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Sr Member
I hope those numbers written on each piece weren't done with a Sharpie, because that will bleed through your paint. I would recommend removing the numbers before you do anymore painting.

Studio Kitbash

Sr Member
I hope those numbers written on each piece weren't done with a Sharpie, because that will bleed through your paint. I would recommend removing the numbers before you do anymore painting.

Thanks! The numbers were done with a Japanese paint marker for Gundam figures, so I'm hoping I'm okay. Under the second coat of primer, nothing's showing through currently.


Sr Member
Alright, cool. I just remember when I first got into the model/prop making business and used a Sharpie, it bled all the way through the final paint job. Expensive lesson to learn.

Studio Kitbash

Sr Member
Fujimi/Nitto 1/76 Jagdpanther #24/25 Side Panel Width = 1/35 Shovel Panel Width = Centurion Piece #K12 Width (or at least should be pretty durn close)

IMGP6886.jpg IMGP6883.jpg IMGP6887.jpg IMGP6884.jpg IMGP6885.jpg IMGP6882.jpg
The Fujimi/Nitto 1/76 Jagdpanther pieces #24/25, cut exactly in half (lengthwise), yields a piece that fits the upper deck at 28.59mm quite perfectly. Don't forget to "fill in" the square holes on upper corners of these pieces.

Your shovel can come from any number of 1/35 tank kits, but the agreed-upon confirmed donor seems to be the shovel from the Tamiya 1/35 Panzerkampfwagen VI Tiger 1 model, and on this kit (Item No. 35056) it is part #B26. See my caliper measuring all these pieces to within 1mm of each other. You can get more accurate than that if you like, but my personal aesthetic preference is to go for "slightly off" in order to keep it looking "hand-made" and "rushed to meet production schedule" so that it doesn't get "too" super-accurized and become machine-made-looking.
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Studio Kitbash

Sr Member
To make the dampers, or nacelle clip tie-downs, or whatever their official nurnie-greeblie-thingie name is, I think I may have serendipitously (after three different attempts) figured out the mystery of the "missing piece": there is no missing piece.

The builder (who I think was Dave Beasley) of this subassembly simply "recycled" all available material, which were exactly these three parts:

From left, clockwise: 1.) Bandai 1/24 Messerschmitt Bf-109E4 Parts #B17 and B18 (5-step landing gear struts, ONLY the Bandai kit will provide this). 2.) Tamiya 1/35 Panzer Kampfwagen III Ausf. M/N (Kit No.35011), Part #C8 (Gun Barrel mount, and NOT part # A54 which looks very similar but is slightly different on top). 3.) 1/9 Kettenkrad manufactured originally by ESCI in 1975, and later re-issued variously by Ertl, Revell, Hasegawa, Dragon, or now Italeri, part #226P (or its identical twin #226Q). The trick is in a.) how you modify them (esp Parts 1 and 3), and b.) how you DON'T THROW AWAY YOUR CUT-OFFS, SCRAPS, or "extra sprue" lying around after modifications...


See those TWO little nibs that are cut off the landing gear struts on the wheel part? KEEP THOSE -- they become the "rivets" that later show up on top of the greeblie.

Now notice something else...

See how the landing gear top hinge section, that would go into the airplane (and allow the strut to swing in/out of the landing gear recess bay) is, when cut off, EXACTLY the width of the bottom inset of the Kettenkrad tow hook (Lower Right section of this picture)? That's not a coincidence either.


So you should end up with something like this, before you begin any major surgery on the landing gear struts' circular sections.


Then you should cut off the outside edge, on both sides, of the strut, using the natural angle of your clippers to where they "hit" the base but go back far enough to remove the "obvious" perception that this is a landing gear strut, and sorry for the crappy picture that is out of focus, but that's the only one that was remotely post-able. After this, you're going to sand it down using the SMALLER of the two sanding wheel options that come standard in your Dremel tool.

So that the end result...

looks something like this. What you're trying to do is "narrow the inserted section" enough so that it fits "perfectly" in between the opening of the Kettenkrad hook's negative space, so this is the trickiest part and so far I've never done it perfectly, even though I'm getting closer.


So before final modifications, it looks like this, but of course you have to build this on a dummied-up engine and nacelle core (L'eggs Pantyhose container, modified down) so that you're getting all the compound angles as close to perfect as possible. And then, the most delicate cut of all, which I have marked with a Gundam pen first...

That line/angle is crucial, because it is what creates the perception/illusion of a third/missing nurnie in this whole subassembly.


This is what it looks like "before" the correction for the nacelle nosecone angle, and the cut, and the final terrifying commitment of the sprue cutter...


And here is the rough-up, before gluing and final back section cut. See how it begins to look like the original subassembly?

Then you glue those little buggers on that you didn't throw away earlier, after cutting them way down to just tiny nibs/rivets, meaning you are just using the very tip-top of the leftover piece.

Looking familiar? We're getting there...

Meanwhile, on the UNDERSIDE, what you've done is cut off HALF of the landing gear top section, creating this:

And then, you cut off the very back top circular section, making it flush with the rest of the piece, and all of a sudden...

Viola! You have a musical nurnie that looks remarkably like the original...


Or at least, close enough for government work (make final clean-ups, adjustments, and whatnot with Perfect Plastic Putty or your preferred filler of choice.

Here's the original, for comparison's sake.

Has this solved the mystery of this missing mystery greeblie? I'd love to hear your thoughts, but I think it does, and I am mostly of this opinion because a.) hundreds of dollars of train bridges, cranes, track barriers, truck trusses, still girder bridges, and other steel-girder construction model kits later I still haven't found anything close, b.) this method explains both the 1.) strange spacing and 2.) different sizes/heights of the two top bump "rivets" on this particular nurnie, and c.) modeling putty of this type ALSO explains the indent in what would be a "puttied-in" section of the nurnie, since the putty of the 1970's putty was famous for drying out and "sucking in" as it dried, leaving little impressions or concavities like that found on the far left picture above.

Mad props and thanks go (again) to Dave Goldberg for his 3D printed version of the nurnie, which he modeled and which I used as a reference/template for making some of these guesses.


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