Y-Wing Build (DaveG Open Source)


Active Member
Hi All,

I'll be constructing a studio scale Y-Wing based off of DaveG's open source project. Many thanks to Dave for sharing this great work! The Y-Wing is one of my favorite Star Wars fighters. This will be an exciting build for me.

Like most, I'm working within a budget. Shapeways prints are fantastic but dollars add up when you're printing many parts. Over my model building years, I've acquired or built tools to help fuel the fervor. So, my plan is to grow or cut the major assemblies in my garage. I'll be using Dave's excellent 3D model and Fusion 360 to modify the 3D files. I'll post pics of 3D model updates I make. For example, I'm planning to refine the 3D nacelle shells to make a close match to the Airfix Saturn shells. If someone finds value in having them, I'm happy to submit to DaveG for inclusion in the open source repo.

Here's a rundown of my equipment. Nothing super expensive, all hobbyist-grade tools:

Creality CR-10 Printer (FDM)
Anycubic Photon DLP Printer (Resin)
Inventables 1000x1000 CNC

After 2 weekends of printing, here's where I am so far:


I had to split the forward fuselage to fit on the Photon printer. I have more parts to print before this is complete.

The shrouds printed nicely. A little primer and wet and dry sanding will knock off the tiny layer lines

Finally, the shroud pistons

I'm hoping for steady progress!


Sr Member
It looks like you got pretty clean prints there. I'm looking forward to seeing your progress.


Active Member
Happy Friday and Belated Thanksgiving!

I had some time off from work and made progress on the Y-Wing:

1. Cut the Tee Plate on the CNC. I could not find the 'Tee Plate.dxf' file in the Google repo so I recreated it from Fusion360. I'll package it up with other files I create and send to DaveG for possible contribution to the open source files. I chose to cut the Tee Plate from 1/4" MDF. Why? Budget! I'm trying to keep this build relatively inexpensive. A 2x2 MDF sheet is $4.99 whereas acrylic is $26. Acrylic is more finicky to cut on a CNC, too. I'm plating the Tee Plate with styrene anyway so it shouldn't matter.
2. Completed the armature. Nothing unique here. Another shout out to DaveG for some great engineering!
3. Sanded and test fit the core body sections.

Here are some pics:



There's more sanding and dry fitting to do before the core section is complete. I'm also prepping/printing more parts in parallel. I'll post pics of more 3D printed parts soon. For the Y-Wing aficionados - if you see me making goofy mistakes, speak up!


Active Member
I'm refining the nacelle covers, adding the slight flaring and detail around the bottom. Best as I can tell from reference photos, the Airfix pieces have consecutive ridges that wrap the circumference of the rocket shell. They reverse direction midway causing a slight reflection change. Better described with pics:



This effect looks pretty close to the kit part. Well, close enough for me. I'll complete the wider band at the top pf the shell and this 3D model will be done. These models allow me to print the nacelle covers instead of purchasing 2 Airfix kits. I'll add scratch built details, post-print. Hopefully I can finish them up tomorrow before heading back to work. :)


Active Member
Nice work!
Thanks Dave! I can't thank you enough for your open source contributions. I'm going to do the same with my studio scale ED-209 build when I pick it back up.

I've been modeling and printing like crazy. Finished the Saturn V shell 3D model and started the prints. I had to split/slice each shell half to fit my DLP printer. Otherwise, I think they're a good match to the Saturn V kit parts. I also printed maxhebus' designs for the engine core and fins. The black parts in the pics are ABS printed on my FDM printer and the green and gray parts are resin printed on my DLP printer. I'm estimating ~$35 in filament and resin costs to print everything so far. Not bad for a low budget approach to the build!





These parts are straight off the printer with support nubs unsanded. I'll have everything cleaned up and sanded during construction.


Active Member
Merry Christmas!

I've been working on modeling the Nacelle Clips. DaveG's source files were missing the front scoop so I used what was there as a baseline. I also reviewed Studio Kitbash's excellent part breakdown. I modeled the original parts individually and cut them relative to the method Studio Kitbash demonstrates. I also replicated the slight curve on the Nacelle Cone so the fit should be just right. Many thanks to DaveG and Studio Kitbash! Here's the final model and a test print:








Active Member
Happy Saturday!

I've completed the Forward Fuselage print and assembly. This was a bit of an engineering challenge. I had to split top and bottom because the fuselage was ~10mm too wide for my DLP. I went through several design iterations to find a good split line that minimized sanding, maximized strength, and provided decent surface area for glueing. I also modeled 12 'tabs' and glue plates to increase adhesion surface area. The plates conformed to the complex curves of the inner fuselage. The fuselage bottom is a relatively thin piece. So I also fiberglassed the inside of this piece after glue-up. I've got about 8 hrs in the thinking, modeling, and slicing. This resin sands easily so I printed at .1mm layer height and cut print time in half. In all, this represents ~21 hrs of printing time.

BTW - I print this on my DLP printer but I think it's possible to get a useable version on an FDM printer too. I tried various iterations on my CR10 because the large print area allowed the entire print w/o splitting. I printed in ABS at .1mm layer height. The surface was very good and ABS is easily sanded. The only gotcha were the modeled panel lines had minor stair stepping. However, I think someone with good modeling skills could re-scribe with success. Point is, someone with an FDM printer, a little fortitude, and willingness to finesse the part can get a SS Y-Wing fuselage for their very own w/o paying $200+ for the Shapeways version. Anyway, just my $.02.

Here's some pics:








A little more sanding and a spot of filler and I think this major part is complete!


Well-Known Member
I’m SO tuned in to this!

I was never a huge fan of the Y-wing until I built a Nice-n Gold Leader awhile back, now I’m fascinated by it. So many variations between the ships, and such intricate details.
Your work is fantastic, and very inspiring (maybe enough for me to do Gold 5)....


Active Member
I’m SO tuned in to this!

I was never a huge fan of the Y-wing until I built a Nice-n Gold Leader awhile back, now I’m fascinated by it. So many variations between the ships, and such intricate details.
Your work is fantastic, and very inspiring (maybe enough for me to do Gold 5)....
Thank you for the kind words!


Active Member
Hi All,

I had a significant fail but overcame. I think there's value in sharing the fails and how things get resolved. Hopefully someone can benefit!

The Saturn V pieces I modeled were too tall to print as one piece on my SLA. No worries, that's what model slicing is for. However, I choose poorly when slicing the models. Long story short, I sliced them midway making 4 pieces total for a complete Nacelle shell. Here's how mounting went:


The issue was not with the prints but with alignment of 4 separate parts. One slight alignment miss on piece 1 and it transmits through to piece 4. No bueno. I tried to remove the pieces to salvage the Nacelle Cores but JBWeld and superglue wouldn't give them back without a fight:


Back to the drawing board. After some thinking, I decided to solve the problem with 2 changes - (1) smarter slice point and (2) assemble the shell half BEFORE glueing to Nacelle Core. My printer could handle a slightly longer section. After some measurements, I decided to slice where the smooth section meets the ridges. I also created 2 recessed section where I could epoxy a styrene tab, connecting the two sections with a little more strength:


Next I engineered a clamping system that would hold the pieces in register while I glue it up from the inside:


The clamp may be overkill but it takes 13hrs to print two Saturn V pieces at .05mm layer height. I want to ensure that when they are glued, they are glued in the correct alignment. There's no going back once it sets! A screw-up costs me another 13hrs.

I think the new approach has this issue licked. The jig worked great. It also functioned well as sanding guide for the ends of the shells. Here are some pics of the outcomes:



I made a portal to check alignment on the backside:


Much better and no seams to sand! With this new approach confirmed, I will (re)start prints on all the Nacelle parts. :eek:

Studio Kitbash

Active Member
That's an impressive bit of engineering and work-around; I love the jig idea and it seems to have worked great. I always recommend to scratch builders who ask that you buy two original Airfix Saturn V models in 1/144 scale and save yourself the hassle of all this work for both the engines as well as the engine cores and cones, but at least this way you've got a back-up way of producing a Y-Wing when the Saturn V molds finally break down and fall apart and they stop being produced. I imagine we'll see a new re-issue of the kit this year with the 50th anniversary of the moon launch, but I'm also of the impression (from this forum) that the original mold for the kit is not the one they are currently using (the post-1989 version?), and that there are some slight, subtle, but significant differences between them, one reason why the old vintage kits are usually $75 or more on Ebay, and only cheaper than that if you can find them at a garage sale.


Sr Member
Yes! That's one of the things people tend to overlook with 3D printing... it's not just for parts, but can also be used to make custom jig, clamps, cutting fixtures, etc. Nice work!