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Here is “Bumblebee”, a Bristol Channel style pilot cutter. She is based on no one vessel in particular but is more of an interpretation of the type from many sources. Some parts of her make up may seem a bit dubious to the trained eye, but such is the limitation of this scale.

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I started this one with the intent of entering it in BoBS. Though it may sound a touch arrogant (it’s really not) my motivation came from a general disappointment in what I had so far seen in terms of BoBS ship building. I saw few risk taken and little done in the way of trying something new. I thought to foster some more of that by presenting this as something to be one-upped. After all, isn’t the game supposed to be about growing as a builder, not just grabbing at points (or did I miss something?). In the end I find the learning curve of the game far too steep for someone who’s never been a role player. I also went over budget and would still need to apply sails. I had figured on 12 hours total for the whole build, but at 14 had only got this far.

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It’s not a new concept, I’ve theorized it on other threads before and even had a mock up on my desk for a while. It is the first practical application I’ve done though. Where it stands, I wouldn’t find this technique on such a small scale useful for anything but late period/modern boats. I simply couldn’t get the curvature any tighter as to make the bow any buffer, nor could I reliably twist the sides to mimic tumblehome either.

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The rigging is a marginal success partially because I cut a lot of corners but also because, had forgone internal support in favor of good sportsmanship for BoBS. My other ships are aided by having dowels in their masts and spars to add stiffness. This one is all Lego aside from the string, so too much tension has the opposite effect. It all has to be just right otherwise it’s prone to collapse.

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Only the one side is actually photogenic. The starboard side is still just mocked up from cast-offs and knock-offs as I only ever intended to show the larboard side for the game. It’s from one of these evil imitations that she draws her quirky name though. A sticker still stuck to one of the bricks bears the name of a particular transformer. I felt she was telling me her own name since the placement wasn’t conscious or intentional, thus “Bumblebee”. I think it works and besides; its bad luck the change the name of a ship.

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Tough she’s not quite finished I’ll still issue the challenge to anyone interested in rising to it. If I can do this in 14 hours what can you do?

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I understand your difficulty concerning building technics but the beginning is promissing. If you need more inspiration have a look at my "Sunset Mirage". I also combined a few ship building techniques. Keep on building!

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I actually like this a lot, and I think it could have purpose in BoBS as a smuggler or scout of some kind. At the very least, it's a very interesting build

I'm very curious to know what the part numbers are for the deck pieces, and also how you got the sides to mount to the hull with a smooth taper. The only thing I can think of is that you placed a 87087 (1x1 with one stud) on every other outboard stud, kinda like this...

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...then rotated the 87087s accordingly and attached your 2x4 plates to them. If that's not it, I'm very interested to see how it is :-)

Edited by Cousarmy0001

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The deck is just two 2625 at either end. The bulwarks aren’t even attached to the deck/frame. There is a light saber blade in the stem and the stern is held together by the transom board. Reinforcing plates on a third hidden level create a ledge that keeps the hull from pulling any higher up. Otherwise it’s just 2 X 4s on the inner layer and 2x tiles on the outside.

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More detail on my photobucket.

While I had the camera back out, just for “Ss & Gs” I though it’d show off just a bit. How many Lego ships, let alone string rigs are quite so stable? Despite my earlier complaints about balance at that.

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So I wouldn't be able to reproduce this effect in LDD :-D

I think this is awesome, and I want to build one now.

Perhaps not quite to this degree. there is quite a bit of spring in her. In fact, putting her back together a bunch of times before I had everything just right may be what caused me to go hours over budget pirate_sceptic.gif

There is allowance in LDD to take advantage of tolerance inherent in the bricks. With great patience, I have made it work in a small way before. If you do try it out I'd be interested to hear how it goes.

Edited by kurigan

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This is another great model. The hull technique and shape are brilliant once again and the rigging is beaufiful.

To answer your challenge: I don't think I can outdo you, and I won't try, but you've once again provided some good ideas on a smaller and more easily managed scale.

Edit: removed reference to Brethren of the Brick Seas.

Edited by Captain Dee

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I agree, you should absolutely enter her in BoBS. She's very pretty as-is and you don't need to build an entire ship - there are some that are basically dioramas. I feel for you when it comes to the rigging, sails, and general effort - I came up with an excuse to have the sails furled and brick-built them for the Parakeet to save time.

I will never be able to compete with the prolific builders when it comes to scoring, and I don't think it's that important to try. You should build something that you're happy with and post it as a freebuild whether you license it or not.

On the other hand, I've found that having a deadline isn't a totally bad thing. Yes, corners get cut, but if I wanted my character to have a perfect ship he'd never get one at all :)

For the curvature, I'm wondering if for sharper curves you might be able to do something a little different. One way might be a variation on the rounded tower technique - 1x1 cylinders and 1x2 bricks with tiles SNOTed over it, though I feel this might have unacceptable gaps. Another way that might give you more bend would be vertically staggered 1x2 plates under 1xN tiles going the other way. I'd have to try it and I don't have any bricks on me right now. In either case you might be able to hide the support structure under your deck.

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Captain Dee:

You know I really don’t mind your comment. I don’t see it as a hijacking at all, it’s just conversation, something we used to have around here and need a lot more of any more. However, your post seems a bit emotionally charged and you’ve given me so much to respond to in one shot. It’s a bit overwhelming to be honest. I wonder if this is what it’s like to talk to me. pirate_sceptic.gif

Instead of trying to hit on every point, I think I’m going to try this. I got just so far in my reply before I found my brain grid-locked. For the moment I’ll put up what I have and hope it’s enough to make my counter point. Perhaps it will only make me seem like more of a jerk, but there’s little to do but block and guard when you’re already up against the wall.

Let’s start with this:

I think you misunderstand my intentions. As I said, I’ve no idea how I’m perceived, but this gives me a chance to affect that, hopefully in a positive way. You see it’s not a “nana-a-boo-boo I’m better than you” kind of thing. It’s more of the “if I can do it, then anyone can” sort. I mean to provide a higher yet still achievable ideal, not illustrate a gulf in talent. Stop and think about it for a minute: (this is one of my core philosophies where ALL this is concerned, and a big part of my motivations) they’re Lego after all, no? It’s a system of purposefully standardized and interlocking elements. If one person can make it another can learn to, at the very least, copy it. Heck, it’s no secret that I adopted the style of my larger ships from Henrik Hoexbroe. The inspiration for this style goes back to SlyOwl. So when I say “look what I did, can you do better?” I’m suggesting at the possibility of success, not failure.

Like anyone, I want credit for what I’ve achieved, but that doesn’t mean I guard my methods jealously. Go ahead and try this, or any other style on. Take a chance, click some bricks together. To learn his style, to have taken it this far, I literally looked at Henrik’s images and counted studs and created a copy on my desk. From there I saw all kinds of possibilities and began tearing in.

I see how I can be perceived as a jerk by what I wrote, but I ask that readers choose to give me the benefit of doubt and assume upon my benevolence.

As far as cookie cutter’s go and part of what burns me about all this: there is a plethora of data available on this forum. There are indices, tutorials and active members who’d be thrilled to be asked to help. New creations show casing all different sorts of methods and techniques show up in the MOCs thread all the time, yet we’ve members who’ve only come over for the game, struggling like babes in the woods. They don’t have to “reinvent the wheel”.

Now I’m worried that you seem to suggest that I’m being critical of new come’s efforts. I’ve said nothing disparaging, nor would I. If not offering a compliment is insulting, then I’ve got nothing and would do best to leave now.

One final thought on all that: the lil’ badge says “ship expert” not “MOC expert”. I’m no Lego master. My ships came a long way because I worked at it, and because of this community. I used to think my old stuff was “the bee’s knees” and was heartbroken when the community didn’t agree. However had I not been told as much, what would have ever inspired me to do better?

Since about 2005 I went from this, to this because of this place.

One more myth I wish to dispel, and I do hope people read this. If I don’t comment, it doesn’t mean I hate you or disrespect your work. I’m not impressed by historic accuracy alone. My whole thing is scope over scale. Bigger isn’t better. Well done is well done at any size. To me, scale as a measure of merit is elitist. Bricks = money. To go big you need a deep purse. But you don’t need to go big to do something truly great.

Edited by kurigan

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I may not have made my own point very well. I was in a hurry when I wrote that spiel, but ultimately I wished to express the thought that you're just too good of a source of knowledge to remain silent with regards to BoBS specifically. You and I know about those indices and other sources of info, but as you said, some of these folks are here for a game and either don't know of these resources or won't look them up when told (I've tried). I certainly don't see you as some know-it-all jerk, and I understand you haven't said anything disparaging - I just offered what I said because you had previously voiced a concern over how you are perceived. I didn't mean to put you on the spot.

I think we're pretty much in agreement on all this, but as I said, I didn't make that point somehow. Certainly not complimenting is not an insult, or not commenting either for that matter. I didn't mean to suggest that at all. And of course we can all learn from each other: that's what this forum is all about, right?

I can't see tags; I'm viewing mobile, so that has never been an issue for me (though I did suspect you had it!)

You're absolutely correct in that last paragraph about scale, cost, greatness etc. I said you probably wouldn't be impressed with my first rate - because while it's big, it isn't "something truly great" as you put it. You've seen it before, and it's nothing extraordinary. Other ship experts probably won't be impressed either, and that's fine. It's mostly an experiment anyway. I don't perceive competition to be "better" than anyone else from you or any other shipbuilders.

These conversations would go better face-to-face I think. I apologize if I seemed to be emotionally charged. I actually meant that whole prior response to be complimentary. I have a lot of respect for what you've done. :classic:

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Great! Then we all agree and we can all be friends again pirate_laugh2.gif

back to the ship:

Franco Clarke/Plaid Beard/Captain Braunsfeld:

Thank you, thank you.

Cb4:

Took a moment to conjure up what you were describing in my mind but I think I have it. Basically a curved castle wall skinned in tiles. It might work, but it might also require an increase in scale. It’d probably wind up being something morel like my larger ships but would be an interesting approach to having different “paint” colors inside and out.

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Very cool ship!

I feel conflicted sometimes, when encountering cool MOCs that use techniques that I just don't really want to use.

Personally, I don't think I would ever build something that relied on bending a layer of plates or pushing the tolerances of the bricks. Not that I disapprove of someone else doing it, not that I have some purist fetish that forbids me using non-approved connection techniques (in selected cases I do use them). But still I just wouldn't build this--my many years of Lego-ing, mostly as a kid, make it feel wrong. I've internalized some combination of "this is not going to be strong/will keep popping apart and be annoying" and "this will damage my legos"

But of course it is a technique that can be used to great effect. Lost of the best "Shiptember" offerings last fall relied on this I noticed.

So then I wonder if I'm just being too linear-minded and unadventurous. Still, I can't imagine ever wanting to do it...

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pir_laugh2.gif TY

Well for one there is a difference between taking up tolerance, which is harmless, and actually placing the bricks under tension. Take a bunch of 1X2 bricks and make a long staggered wall, say three bricks high. Wiggle both ends back and forth in your hands and you'll see how much flex there actually is. Add in rounded bricks and it becomes even more flexible with no risk of damage.

On the other hand, what I do isn't that. In both styles you'll find the bricks under quite a bit of tension. I referenced above where Bumblebee kept springing apart while I was trying to get her geometry just right. Now that does run the risk of the bricks loosing elasticity and holding their new bent shape in a few years, but then all bricks left out will lose elasticity as the chemical compounds slowly degrade. The difference is whether or not they freeze in a useful shape or distort.

I personally don't care as these are intended to be permanent displays. If they change at all it will only be in to newer versions of the same thing. If I were intending to tear them down to recycle the bricks later, some of that might be a concern. These will stay together at least until I’m dead and by then the bricks being already old will likely have degraded anyway (barring the unforeseen tragedy of course).

I'm also not using new, prime bricks. My bricks from childhood are still "enshrined" in those old "suit cases" on a shelf. The entirety of the contributing elements of my fleet come from used lots and are marginally unsellable cast-offs at that. If you ever get the chance to see them in person I’ll let you pick one up so you can see all the hidden, sunburns, UV damage, petrified stickers, scratches chips cracks and tooth marks hidden beneath. Some purists will weep for the bricks I “destroy” but the same people would likely have rejected the lion’s share of what I build with as too far gone. So fret not as in a way I’m giving these bricks another chance.

Bumblebee and all my ships are remarkably stable. I move them around the room all the time without incident. I'd "swoosh" then save that when I do all crew and the guns slide around the smooth decks and have to be put backpirate_look.gif . Bumblebee doesn't yet have a permanent birth so she's taken the grand tour of my office/den in the last couple of weeks just to try and keep her out of harm’s way. Re: the image above, I carry her around by her top mast when I do move her. Once completely assembled they all become reliably stable and playable.

You see though the nature of my “play" is a bit more mundane than in my childhood (tearing bits off to make shot holes and knocking masts and rigging downpirate_devg1.gif ), my ships are intended to be interacted with. I put so much effort into replicating a "working rig" just so that you can work it. If the hull was apt to explode every time you touched it, all that would be for naught.

A final thought on the subject would be the intention behind the build. Most MOCs you find are meant to be “Lego ships”. Some of them of a higher or more advanced caliber, other even including a touch of historic/real world accuracy. There’s nothing wrong with this as a concept, mind you, it’s a valid and respectable approach. Mine is something almost entirely different. I’m trying to use Lego to build a model of a ship as opposed to a Lego style facsimile of one. Though I’ve seen some remarkable applications to the contrary (CGH, Admiral Croissant, Sebus, etc.), the conventional method of “stacking bricks” simply falls short. If in the end it still look like Lego, then it doesn’t look like a ship, not where my intentions are concerned. So we find that for most, nothing of what I’ve been doing is the right approach, nor is it worth the effort. For me though there is no going back.

The argument is essentially similar to “Classic Space” vs “Neo Classic”. To some, like me, studless is the pinnacle of Lego design, to others it ruins the mystique. To each his own, there is no right answer, but you don’t see the same arguments over modular building’s do you? That front seems united on studlessness and realism. (I know, it’s like I just scratched a record in your mind pirate_oh.gif ).

Anyway, I’m only so verbose out of enthusiasm, not irritation. Thanks for bringing it up so I could climb on my lil’ soap box for a minute and hear myself talk, err.. type. Feel welcomed to rebuttal or counter point, it’s all for fun in the end.

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I simply love it Kurigan! When you built the last one with rubber bands I thought that was spectacular, but this tops the cake. The lack of studs is beautiful! Small ships are so much fun to build because it can be done so quickly.

I've certainly found how stable Lego rigging can be when it's tied together with the chains under the channels. I think in the past that has been a big problem for builders as they've neglected them or brick built a representation of them. The chains are so important to the stability of the masts. When I had Matterhorn's lower masts rigged I lifted her by the fighting tops. It worked very well until I thought rocking her would be a good test. I ended up re-rigging a few chains after that. :D

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It's not often we see small boats like this that look as good as this one! I really like it

Awesome work and thanks for sharing

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On the other hand, what I do isn't that. In both styles you'll find the bricks under quite a bit of tension. I referenced above where Bumblebee kept springing apart while I was trying to get her geometry just right. Now that does run the risk of the bricks loosing elasticity and holding their new bent shape in a few years, but then all bricks left out will lose elasticity as the chemical compounds slowly degrade. The difference is whether or not they freeze in a useful shape or distort.

well it definitely works for you! I agree the "brick damage" dimension is probably overrated. Back in the early '80s when it was "one set for your birthday and one for Christmas" I just about had a personal relationship with each brick, and I've probably never quite gotten over it pirate_satisfied.gif

Re: the image above, I carry her around by her top mast when I do move her.

yes that is a nice trick!

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Excellent work Kurigan! Your models never cease to amaze me. Your attention to detail is superb. I have always been a big fan of your work!

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That's a fine little cutter! I like how you made the entrance door on the deck.thumbup.gif

I do feel the colour scheme is a tad boring, perhaps a bit of colour on the side stripe would be nice.

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Wow, thanks for that. Haven’t been on the front page in a long time. Might help if finished things more often. If I thought she’d be front page material I might have, well… finished her :pir-sceptic: .

Really though, thanks for the support all!

Mr Townsend:

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Well that’s exactly how I got started on this whole rigging kick. I too started out with a “just make it look right” attitude. Because of that I really struggled on my early works, like Snake. When I was trying to figure out solutions to make things more stable, something sparked in my head. I got the idea that maybe the best way was the “right” way. I started brainstorming ways to emulate the real thing in Lego and lo-and behold it worked. It also got me away from letting the pre-fab parts define the size and scale of my creations, like with Hawk (my first experiment with deadeyes).The surprising thing is how simple and easy it is to do. I see the complicated and intricate techniques being emulated with apparent ease and it boggles my mind why other builders shy away from string rigging as if it’s going to be too much.

I think the thing most people don’t figure on is that you really don’t have to spend a lot of time making precise measurements as the block-and-tackle are going to make up the difference at most points around the ship. I just make a quick jig with bricks on a baseplate to tie lines around, which need to be the same length. I keep the knots simple too. This one is basically all over-hand and square knots and cow hitches.

When do we get to see a rigged Matterhorn ready for sea? I know you’ve done quite a bit of work in the field yourself and I’d dearly love to see it all pay off.

Edited by kurigan

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