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Laura Takayama

MOC: FNS Hawkwing (redux) and RNJS Tony Soprano

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In the (not quite-so) grim post-apocalyptic future of 2111, one of the most steadfast forces for good is the Federal Republic of America; remnant of and heir to the traditions of the United States, they continue to battle the forces of evil that had been unleashed by the Final War twenty years prior. Standing at their side against the nefarious Grand Duchy of New York (a nation founded by the architect of the Final War) and the Hordes of Chaos is the small, but doughty Republic of New Jersey, which was founded by the various Mafia families banding together to restore order during the chaos following the catastrophic antimatter exchange that marked the end of the Final War.

Part of the alliance's strength is their powerful navies, consisting of a variety of ships crewed by brave men and women and led by stalwart captains. A key factor in building these navies is the tech-sharing program that allows the FRA and New Jersey to pool their research and military construction programs. One early result of this collaboration is the Federal Republic Kestrel-class Frigates (FF) and Republic of New Jersey John-Gotti-class Guided Missile Frigates (FFG).

Here we have a representative ship from each class, namely the Kestrel-class frigate, FNS Hawkwing (FF-03), and the John Gotti-class guided missile frigate, RNJS Tony Soprano (FFG-004). Armed with a formidable array of weapons and salty crews with brave captains, they are ready to take on any pirates, Confederate Gunboats, Grand Duchy of New York coastal patrols or Chaos raiders that might cross their path:

FNS Hawkwing:

7117485549_b0ed3555be_z.jpg

Hawkwing Port by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

Vital statistics (data from the 2110 edition of Jaynes Fighting Ships):

Data: FF-03, Kestrel Class Frigate, Manufactured by BFG Industries in Philadelphia, PA as part of a joint Naval construction project with the Republic of New Jersey, Corleone Shipyards, LTD.

Launch Date: 2089

Current CO: Lt. Commander Honor S. Harrington, Federal Republic of America Navy

Armament:

Guns: Two 3" (76mm) dual-purpose cannons, two aft-mounted BA-Industries MG-3/42 machineguns (7.62 NATO) and three bridge-wing mounted BA Industries Lewis-Lexington Heavy machineguns (.50 BMG).

Missiles: Two MK-75 twin medium-range Merculite Multipurpose Missile (MMM) launchers

Torpedoes: Two MK-50 sonar-guided long-range heavy anti-ship torpedoes.

Propulsion: Twin John Reed 12-cylinder 1500 HP bio-diesel engines with a cruising speed of about 40 Knots.

Notes: The Federal Republic of America version of this ship differs from the original Republic of New Jersey Kestrel class frigates in that it has the BFG Industries MK-98 Search/Track radar as opposed to the Corleone Shipyards Target Acquisition System (TAS) Mark-7, along with an added Furuno Commercial Navigation radar (for both standard navigation and deceptive tactics to fool enemy ships into thinking the frigate is a mere fishing vessel) and the PRC-99 directional HF communications array. Furthermore, the RNJ Navy's "Nebelwerfer" style aft-mounted multiple rocket launcher system is replaced by a second 3-inch/76mm cannon.

FWD View:

7117485751_69602f740e_z.jpg

Hawkwing Fwd by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

Aft View:

7117485961_dba035ec43_z.jpg

Hawkwing Aft by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

Her brave Crew:

7117486523_a3b27bf67a_z.jpg

Hawkwing's Crew by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

L-R: 7 Seamen and Junior Petty Officers, Chief Aubrey Wandermann, Senior Chief Inara D'lann, Master Cheif Ginger Lewis, Lt. William Turner (XO) and Lt. Cmdr Honor Harrington (CO)

Click on any of the pics to see the rest of the set, including interior views of the bridge and main deck.

RNJS Tony Soprano:

6971409550_07bd5790d7_z.jpg

Tony Soprano Port by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

Vital statistics (data from the 2110 edition of Jaynes Fighting Ships):

Data: FFG-04, John Gottie Class Frigate, Manufactured by Corleone Shipyards, LTD in Camden, NJ as part of a joint Naval construction project with the Federal Republic of America and BFG Industries.

Launch Date: 2096

Current CO: Lt. Commander Archibald Haddock, Republic of New Jersey Navy

Armament:

Guns: One 3" (76mm) dual-purpose cannon, two aft-mounted BA-Industries MG-3/42 machineguns (7.62 NATO) and three bridge-wing mounted BA Industries Lewis-Lexington Heavy machineguns (.50 BMG).

Missiles: Two MK-75 twin medium-range Multipurpose Merculite Missile (MMM) launchers and One aft-mounted 6-round MK-7 3" (76mm) "Screaming Mimi" short-range Multipurpose Merculite Missile (MMM) launcher.

Torpedoes: Two MK-50 sonar-guided long-range heavy anti-ship torpedoes.

Propulsion: Twin John Reed 12-cylinder 1500 HP bio-diesel engines with a cruising speed of about 40 Knots.

Notes: The Republic of New Jersey named this ship after Doge Antonia Soprano's Great-Great Grandfather.

FWD View:

6971409308_7e5edcbde7_z.jpg

Tony Soprano Fwd by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

Aft View:

7117487203_dfb7d8689d_z.jpg

Tony Soprano Aft by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

The Crew:

6971410760_1f271852d5_z.jpg

Tony Soprano Crew by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

Far Right is Lt. Cmdr. Archibald Haddock, and immediately to his left is Lt. Marcia Salvatore

Again, click on any of the pics to see the rest of the set.

4th wall stuff: I decided to change the Hawkwing to light bley in color to fit in better with my emerging general "paint scheme" for the Federal Republic's Navy.. I.e. more white/light bley than black and dark bley (as was evident from the FNS Inferno and RNJS Thunder Child), and used a slightly modified version of the dark bley original version of the ship for the RNJS Tony Soprano. I also didn't like the original ladder going from the main deck to the 01 Level, or the fact that there was no visible means of going from the 01 Level to the 02 Level platform, and after thinking a while on it, I came up with the idea of using two 1x2 Ladder plates (in contrasting colors) to give the impression of a typical exterior shipboard ladder, and was quite pleased with how it turned out. Finally, the "Screaming Mimi" missile launcher on the Tony Soprano is based on Brickmania's Nebelwerfer kit (one of which I bought at Brickfair last year), but modified into a shipboard mounted version.

I hope you like them, and Comments and Criticism is always welcome.

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Nice ships!

I love the dwarf in Soprano crew :rofl:

The MMM is also pretty fun looking.... I wouldn't want to go against that!

Though I think the light bley looks a bit better than the dark...

The dark is a bit ... well too dark :laugh:

Thoughts:

You have a nice blue hull... but nothing else is blue!

You should throw in some blue highlights somewhere ... doesn't have to be much - but just a few spots... otherwise it looks like you used the blue hull simply because you had a blue hull :look:

My other thought is that if it's 2111 - they should be more 'futuristic' - these look pretty similar to current day cruisers...

maybe add more slopes and angle the ship more? like those fancy stealth ships they now have? :excited:

I definitely liked the backstory and figs - I love hearing other people's build up their own little worlds. :sweet:

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Nice ships!

I love the dwarf in Soprano crew :rofl:

The MMM is also pretty fun looking.... I wouldn't want to go against that!

Thanks! The Federal Republic and Republic of New Jersey both have rather aggressive equal-opportunity recruitment policies....

Though I think the light bley looks a bit better than the dark...

The dark is a bit ... well too dark :laugh:

Well, to be honest, a fair part of that problem is the fact that I had to use all artificial lighting, and even with every light in the room on (and aimed at the shooting area if I could aim it) it still turned out rather dark, for some reason... Looks like I'm going to have to spring for a spotlight for LEGO photography purposes.

Thoughts:

You have a nice blue hull... but nothing else is blue!

You should throw in some blue highlights somewhere ... doesn't have to be much - but just a few spots... otherwise it looks like you used the blue hull simply because you had a blue hull :look:

Well, to be perfectly honest, I'd have preferred the hull to be light or dark bley, but LEGO doesn't make them in that color. :sceptic: The closest they have to what I'd like would be (essentially) the same hull, but in black from the 7899 2006 Police boat, which costs an average of $6 on BrickLink and is impossible to find more than one of at any given BL store.... :sadnew:

My other thought is that if it's 2111 - they should be more 'futuristic' - these look pretty similar to current day cruisers...

maybe add more slopes and angle the ship more? like those fancy stealth ships they now have? :excited:

I definitely liked the backstory and figs - I love hearing other people's build up their own little worlds. :sweet:

Well, this setting pretty much split from our timeline in 1988 (when my brother and I got into LEGO) and had been fairly schizo-tech from the get-go (i.e. star fighters alongside (vibro-)sword wielding knights), and after much of the world got antimatter bombed back to the stone age, most of the nations that rebuilt from the rubble are at a mid-late 20th century tech level: the Federal Republic and Grand Duchy of New York have both managed to preserve a fair bit of pre-Final War tech, but due to its complexity and an almost constant state of warfare, they can't build too much super-awesomesauce stuff at any one time. For example, the FRA still manages to build and maintain a small space fighter fleet, but they can only build 2 of their Strike Viper (mod I did of the Raid VPR, which I'll get around to posting sometime in the near future) per YEAR... It's also why only the Special Operations Command gets all the really cool toys, like hand-held energy weapons....

Edited by Hikaro Takayama

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Like I said on BrickForge, you're really improving! Ships should come naturally to you since you're an old sea salt, yourself. :wink: I'm totally jealous of all those CMF sailors.

And of course the story is awesome. :sweet:

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Like I said on BrickForge, you're really improving! Ships should come naturally to you since you're an old sea salt, yourself. :wink: I'm totally jealous of all those CMF sailors.

And of course the story is awesome. :sweet:

Thanks for the kind words, Napoleon. Yes, ships do come fairly naturally, but as can be seen by some of the earlier versions of the Hawkwing, translating what I know into LEGO has taken some practice. The CMF series 4 sailors were fairly easy for me to come by: I'm pretty good at feeling packs to get the minifigs I wanted, and it seemed that the sailors were the least popular (and more numerous) ones from that series, and I made it a point to get at least one sailor every time I bought some Series 4 figures. As a result, I had about two dozen sailors by the time all was said and done...

I decided to use the Series 4 sailor as the enlisted Naval personnel of the Republic of New Jersey because I realized that I had created the Republic of New Jersey to be kind of based on Renaissance Venice as well as Napoleonic England (i.e. small country with a powerful navy), but didn't have any naval personnel for them (aside from the officers & Chiefs that I built from the Build a Minifig thing), and the Series 4 Sailor fit the general color scheme of the Republic of New Jersey perfecty (New Jersey's Military forces uniforms are primarily white and black, like their flag: The army has white shirts with black pants, like the Navy officers, their SOCOM branch are black Ninjas led by Ryu Hayabusa, their Marine Corps uses the old 1980's type black fireman's torso with white pants and the regular sailors are, of course, white).

If you want some more Series 4 sailors, you might want to check the Build-a-Minifig section of your local LEGO store: I was down at the LEGO store in Arundel Mills, and they had a TON of parts for the Sailor, Musketeer and Mad Scientist....

Finally, to address one of Si-MOCs' earlier comments, I decided to dismantle my old Sea Serpent castle ship (the only set ever to be made with blue balcony pieces) and re-build the 02-LEVEL platforms using blue parts to kind of harmonize the ships' color schemes (so that the hulls wouldn't be the only blue things on the ships), and it actually DID make them look better, overall (the FNS Hawkwing now looks like a Surface Navy ship belonging to the Classic Space fleet :tongue: )... I was planning on taking the Sea Serpent apart so I could re-use the hull pieces to make two gunboats (either Confederate or Grand Duchy of New York, haven't decided yet), so that was no big deal.

I'm at my Fiance's place right now, and spent most of the day at home entertaining relatives from Pittsburgh, so I haven't had time to take pics with the new color scheme. I'll try to get them posted tomorrow.

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Sadly, I do not have a local LEGO Store; the nearest one is in Indianapolis. :sceptic: Hopefully they'll still have some sailors when I go there later this year.

Looking forward to the new color scheme! :thumbup:

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Wow that looks way better :thumbup: I like your gun/missile mounts. Is there much in the cabin?

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Wow that looks way better :thumbup: I like your gun/missile mounts. Is there much in the cabin?

There's a fair amount of interior space... If you click on the pics and go to the full Flickr set, you can see interior pics, or I could just post them here:

Interior shots of the bridges:

7117486145_46618ceb73.jpg

Hawkwing Bridge Interior by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

6971409942_c0b2e240bb.jpg

Tony Soprano Bridge Interior by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

And a shot of the main deck interior (which has the crew berthing and Combat Information Center):

7117486343_70696d03c4.jpg

Hawkwing Main Deck Interior by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

6971410598_ab442e3453.jpg

Tony Soprano Main Deck Interior by Hikaro Takayama, on Flickr

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Looks nice! I like how roomy it is :thumbup:

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