Building The Millennium Falcon

A couple years ago, I built the Lego Star Destroyer, and took some pictures along the way. While that was interesting and all, it was nowhere near as creative as this guy who decided to make a movie out of the construction of his big-ass Millennium Falcon Lego creation. He took the opportunity to make a 10-minute stop-motion film completely with construction workers, stormtrooper attacks, cleaning crews, you name it. The level of detail in this little flick is amazing, and I sat mesmerized watching it….
Building the LEGO Millennium Falcon from Gizmodo on Vimeo.

Assembly, Day 5, Recap / Photos

… Final Day.
Late this afternoon into the evening, while I waited for a friend of mine to come over, I worked on the crew decks. He was running late (as he looked at a new apartment), so I proceeded to the bridge.
After he left, I continued where I’d left off. I almost gave up. Almost said “this can wait til tomorrow”. That’s when I realized precisely how few pieces remained in the boxes spread across the table. That was when I knew I wasn’t going to sleep til it was finished.
Suffice to say, now I can go to sleep.
Mysteries resolved: The crew decks just “sit on” the main hull. Nothing but gravity keeps them in place. The bridge just sits on top of the crew decks (and the rear of the hull). This is (as I moved it around) quite obviously so that you can remove the top two pieces, and reach into the center to grab the keel to move it around. The one time I tried to move it with the “cradle” method, I had to rip a bunch of stuff apart and fix the internal damage I caused. Interestingly, so long as you are gentle, it is quite easy to get at the innards. The hull plates affix with three hinges at the outer edge, and magnets on the inside. Pull the magnets apart (gently) and so long as you obey the axis of the hinge, the hull plate will happily tilt right up to let you work under it like the hood of a car.
Tomorrow I get to disassemble/reassemble it one more time after I clear off the space for it on the top of the stereo gear, way up far out of the way of the cats.
Click below for pictures…

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Assembly Day Four Recap/Photos

It’s beginning to look like a Star Destroyer, I tell ya. I took a slew of pictures today, but in reality, there’s only a couple that really matter. Basically I was taking them as I attached each of the quarter-panels. I did some organization of my work area that made it a LOT easier to crank them out (the way it should have been the first time.
There’s a huge hole in the center, which is where the crew deck will go, but right now it affords me the ability to reach down into it and grab the keel and use that to haul it around. I’ve started wondering if that hinged bit isn’t specifically to allow the top to flip open for that precise purpose. I look at the stand and realize that’d be an awkward place to hold it by (for moving it, etc.) and the panels are held on, literally by three magnets and 12 pegs apiece, so they’re not exactly going to support the weight of the whole assembly. I guess I’ll see as I move through the manual (I actually haven’t skipped to the end to see anything like that, I’m being surprised as I go along).
Just so you know, that centerline gap is “the way it’s supposed to be” (it’s got it on the picture on the box)… It’s Lego, kids, not a 100% scale model. I was getting worried til I actually checked the box and saw it had the same gap there that I had. 🙂
I actually (scarily enough) think I’m on track to have it done before the Sat. night game. Click below for pics…

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Random Assembly Thoughts

It amazes me how much Lego has done with this thing using STOCK parts. I really have yet to come across anything “custom”. In previous “Collectors’ Edition” Star Wars Lego I’ve assembled, there’s always been SOME custom stuff (even if it was just “the cockpit glass” on the X-Wing and Tie Fighter). But, the Star Destroyer is just very impressive to me (so far anyway) in that I haven’t come across anything that was created “just to make it work”.
It’s also definitely imposing. As I sit in my living room and look over at it, it’s impossible to tell it’s Lego (except, obviously, where I can see the innards). But what I see of the portside edge and bottom looks like “an imposing ship ready to plunder your world” grin.
I’ve had to start giving serious consideration to the question of “where is this bitch going when you’re done with it, dude?” The current contender looks like it may be “on top of my entertainment center”, which means it might very well look like the Imperials are doing a flyby of my TV set. 🙂
Everywhere else that I can think of that I could put it is within the range of places “the cats are known to mess around on”, and this definitely should be up and out of their way if I want it to survive.
I need to try and get it done before Saturday night (ha!) because that’s when I’ve got my posse coming over for some D&D, and I have no idea where they’ll sit if that thing is still sitting there.
I had someone ask “why are you posting to your blog so much about this thing?” .. mainly because a couple regular readers complained that they wanted pictures (Dan!) and since they couldn’t afford one of these themselves, there’s more than one person enjoying vicariously the experience of assembling it through watching my assembly of it. Plus it really is an interestingly large Lego project to watch it come together (it’s not the Lego Desk or anything, but still)

Assembly Day Three Recap

I started working during lunch (I was working from home today). Every time I walked by my dining room table, three big-ass thrusters sat there, taunting me, daring me to assemble them.
So I did. And when that was done, I saw what was next was simple. All it was was the big grey sheets that are the four “quarter panels” for lack of a better word (top port, top starboard, bottom port, bottom starboard) that make up the diamond shape. I can crank those out in no time, says I.
An hour later, after only having done one I stop. There is nothing so mind-numbing as looking at a virtual sea of grey lego pegs, constantly counting and recounting (what’s the book say, what’s this piece say, etc.) So I finished a quarter-panel (bottom port as it turns out) and went back to working.
Tonight, after getting my West Wing/Ed fix, I decide to finish the few remaining tidbits of the quarter-panel. I spent about 45 minutes or so building the remaining bit, a portion which folds up off the rear of the panel, lining up mostly-flush to the bottom of the engine panel. I had completely forgotten that the engines were as recessed as they are, but when I looked at a couple photos, sure enough, the Lego matched the photos. I then spent the next half hour or so fighting with the task of “getting the panel mounted to the frame”, only to find that the reason I couldn’t do it was because a single piece was mounted to the panel “off by one”. ARGH!
But now, the bottom port panel is installed, and I’m done for the night. Pictures to follow, to make Dan happy. 🙂

Night Two Recap

Didn’t get much done tonight, but it took a while. 🙂
The “stand” is now complete, attached to the internal skeleton. If you look at the earlier pictures, you’ll see two sets of four pegs sticking out in the back half of the centerline. Those pegs are what the two stand-pedestals attach to, nice and sturdy. The only thing funny is that because the hull plating, etc., is not in place the center of gravity is way off and it keeps kicking forward with nothing in the back to hold it down. 🙂
Also the “top” skeleton appears to be starting to form, with a piece that – interesting enough – is only firmly attached at the top. It stretches from the “high stand” with the magnets in the rear to the stand in the middle, but is only firmly attached at the rear. The front just sets on the front stand, in a smooth alcove constructed to hold it. (I wonder if the magnets are so that it can intentionally flip open to reveal the inside? Why would it be able to do that?)
I’ve started working on the engine section next, with the first of the small engines (e.g., not the big-ass main drive engines) now “installed”.
I started late tonight so I didn’t get a lot done (got home late, ate late, watched Buffy late, then started working on it). Not going to bother taking pics of this stage, not enough changed.

Night One Revisited

Per Dan’s pestering, here are two images:
A couple things to note:
The “edges” are already filled with “sensors” of all kinds (which are really just every possible 1×1 lego piece you’ve ever seen including 16 grey “chalices” from the castle sets grin
Note the magnets that are going to hold SOMETHING together all over the place.
Below the main crosspiece you see where either a blaster array or an ion cannon is going to be mounted (it tilts up and down, although the lego “pegs” are facing away from you).

Star Destroyer Assembly, Night One

So I dug in tonight before dinner. The first half of the assembly is building the skeletal structure the rest of the assembly is mounted to.
So I spend two hours digging through 25 pages of instructions, and I have a big sumbitch of a frame, and I’m thinking to myself “wow, this is big”.
Then I get to the end, at the final stages of assembly, where in large friendly letters it says:
Yup. I have another two hours building the same thing… again. What I was building was the top half of the structure (or the bottom I suppose).
Not tonight. That’ll be tomorrow.
It’s actually tough. There’s a ton of parts, and I can’t just spread them out because it’s going to be a multi-night event and I can’t leave them out or the cats will abscond with some of them and I’ll never get it finished.
Another night, another half of the skeleton.
Later — I lied. I now have a very bad-ass complete “skeleton” ready to start attaching stuff to. Tomorrow night. 🙂