I hope you're having a great week-end so far. Today I'd like to present a full dozen of TIE Fighters to you. I recently realized that I had no TIE Bomber and no TIE Advanced x1 yet, mainly to avoid overlappings with the official models. But some time ago, I decided to go with a unique and different cockpit design which now allows me to also include these two models in the collection. Sorry, it's going to be a rather lengthy post.
We'll start with a real bricked image this time, no movie screen shot. The quote from the title is by Baron Soontir Fel, probably the Empire's best pilot alive, and commander of the second squadron of the Empire's infamous 181th fighter wing.
So, here's the summary of today's set. Detailed images and links to the galleries and instructions follow below in chronological order as they appear in the movies. The images are links to the corresponding galleries
"A fighter that size couldn't get this deep into space on its own." These are the words of Obi-Wan Kenobi in "A New Hope" when a TIE fighter races past the cockpit window of the Millennium Falcon that just arrived in the Alderaan system which had just been destroyed. The ship they see is the standard TIE/ln starsfighter. Probably the most numerous ship in the Empire, and well-known to everybody here I guess. It already features the SNOTty cockpit I like to use for my TIE fighters.
Towards the End of "A New Hope" a different TIE fighter design appears, Vader's personal TIE fighter, more correctly TIE Advanced x1 Starfighter. The cockpit is slightly different this time, as the headlight bricks point towards the outer sides. Unlike the official model this one also features the cutouts at the wing edges, by using these nice wedge slopes.
When our heros hide in an asteroid during "The Empire Strikes Back", a squadron of TIE Bombers patrol the astreroid field and drop bombs on the larger objects. As for the TIE Advanced x1, I used wegded slopes for the cutouts of the already angled sloar panels. The twin pods are connected via chainsaw pieces with the panels, as every other solution would have made the fighter too wide.
Shortly seen in "Return of the Jedi", the sleek TIE Interceptor has its first appearance. The funny thing is that I built the first version of this ship before LEGO® released its own version with a stunningly similar wing technique.
With that we are done with the official movies, and now will take a quick journey through the Expanded Universe. We'll do this alphabetically. The TIE Crawler, also known as Century Tank, is one of the very few ground-based TIE fighters. It appaears in the popular comic book series "Dark Empire". It was quite tricky to get theoctagonal tread panels stable.
Next is the TIE Defender, which many of you might know from the numerous computer games it appears in. It's a trciky triangular craft. With the availability of the great triangular TECHNIC® hub it was finally possible to design this craft. Here I use a different cockpit design. Core piece is a 3L axle with stud. It holds cockpit, glass and engine together, and dixes the triangular hub.
The TIE Droid or Drone is one of the few EU vessels released by TLC as a playset. Hence most you you will know it. Originally it's from the "Dark Empire" comic series. The cockpit is similar to the Defender, but the wing connection is unique. It uses KnightsKingdom Lareg Figure shield holders. They have tow functions here: provide the correct angle and convert an axle hole into a stud to attach the side panels.
Only very rarely seen is the TIE Hunter as it only appears in one single computer game. I usually call it "inverted TIE Interceptor" as the wings are angled towards the outside instead pointing inside. Attching the four wings here wasd also time-consuming until I finally ended up using pneumatic T-pieces.
Besides the TIE Crawler itself, there's also its predecessor, the TIE Mauler, the second tracked TIE fighter we know of. It appears in several computer games, and might be familiar. It combines sloped treads with solar panels making it hard to design. The model hence consists of some unusual connections.
Another triangular craft like the TIE Defender is the TIE Phantom, also known from computer games. It's designed similar to the Defender, only the solar panels are different. It uses clicky hinges which perfectly grab into the stud notch of a wedge plate. Usually I don't like these unconventional connections but here it works fine, and was the only possibility that cmae to mind then.
One of my favourite TIE designs is the tiny TIE Raptor. It only appears in two novels (X-Wing Solo Command, and Courtship of Princess Leia) and one RPG sourcebook (Cracken's Threat Dossier). The little bulb with its short fins was an invention of Warlord Zsinj after the fall of the Empire.
The last model is not directly a TIE fighter, but a very close relative. It's the Scimitar Assault Bomber from the Thrawn Trilogy. It's an interesing and dangerous craft, and also features shields unlike most other TIE models.
Of course there are more TIE models in existence. But theye have yet to be built.
With that I am done for today. I thank you for your interest and patience!
Have a good start into the new week!