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  1. Hey all! I've been collecting UCS sets for a whie now (I've got the original X-wing, Tie Interceptor etc) but there are some I've missed out on over the years. Of the few I've missed, the one I regret the most has always been the 10179 MF, and every time I look at my collection I kick myself that I didn't buy one (or 10!) when they were on sale. Well I finally decided I was going to make one, and try to do it as reasonably priced as possible, so this last week I set myself the challenge of finding all the bits in the shortest time I could (I have no patience). Obviously the first task was find the parts list (hello Bricklink) and decide on some obvious substitutions, e.g. rigging and radar disk. Then I had to set up some tools to help. Ended up using a combination of these tools Excel spreadsheet - complete tracking of all parts, substitutions, orders, prices Brickstore - used to drag down average prices from Bricklink, create files for Brickfficiency, and create Wanted lists on Bricklink Brickfficiency - tool to find combinations of stores to give good prices Bricklink (BL) - lots of searching, use of wanted lists, finding alternative parts etc I then started with my own collection. Had some rules - no breaking apart any sets I had already built, and no raiding my daughters' big box of parts from all their Lego Friends sets. This didn't give me very much :) I think I found 268 parts this way. Most of my lego from my childhood seemed to be black not grey! Next job was to check Lego.com for bricks that they sold that would be significantly cheaper than BL prices. This resulted in an initial order of around 420 parts. Then I got reasonably lucky, as a friend on facebook put me in touch with his dad, who has a big collection of random SW lego and agreed to take the parts list and find out what he hard that I needed that he could spare. This got me 1018 parts, including 3 of the minifigs, and a load of spares for quite a reasonable price :) Unfortunately the lot had a bunch of stuff I'd already ordered from Lego - you win some, you lose some :) Then onto the Bricklinking. This was painful....... I spent countless hours with Brickfficiency and by hand trying to figure out which parts to get from which stores (EU only) to minimise price and shipping. Now I know I could have saved even more money by buying sub-lots from sellers, but I tried mostly to buy all of one lot from one seller just to make my life easier. This process resulted in making a lot more substitutions as I worked out what was rare and/or expensive, or where I could make swaps just to reduce the number of stores I'd buy from. This is by no means the whole lot but here goes (some are obvious swaps and some I didn't find others doing when searching): White arches for LBG arches White plates with bottom pin for LBG plates Patterned radar disk for plain one Grey arches for grey arches with slight rise 6.6L patio poles for 6L ones Technic pin connectors (smooth) with slotted ones Grey levers for grey/black levers DBG Technic 1x16 bricks for mix of DBG and black DBG cones without top groove for grooved ones Grey rigging for black rigging Black technic 4 x 6 open center for LBG Yellow technic right angles for black Black long technic pins for blue I might have forgotten some, and it might be that when I've assembled it all I'll swap some around some more, but you get the idea. Over the course of 2 days I made 10 BL orders from about 5 different countries. Quite a bit to get your head around at the start, like the varying store terms that resulting in one order being cancelled, but on the whole I found the sellers very helpful! The orders got smaller and smaller as I got to the end, which upped the postage costs, but didn't find a way round it. This left 1 last order from Lego, where I paid slightly over the odds but felt it was better than having to do even more smaller orders to mop up the last lots. And that's where I am now - 13 orders in total, all but 1 invoiced and some already on the way. Can't way to start building (and modding) :D Justin PS Also wanted to thank this forum for some of the info I got from others' threads. It really helped, so thanks :D