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  1. jan kusters

    [MOC] Whale Rock Outpost...

     (I have spend a lot of time looking here at Imperial builds for inspiration, trying to design something like a smallish Imperial Outpost into my Crimson Mermaid display. It has been very educational, I still have a lot of trouble mocking with 'modern' Lego (anything past the sixties really). You all have been a great help and sown fantastic ideas, thank you so much!). So without further ado: time to introduce a new faction onto my briney display shelf... The Briney Brick 65: Meet the Empire... by Jan Kusters, on Flickr However, life for the basic imperial Solder is not as easy as it might seem... The Briney Brick 69 (b): Meanwhile, far, far away... by Jan Kusters, on Flickr ''See the world' they said...' The Briney Brick 69 (a): Meanwhile, far, far away... by Jan Kusters, on Flickr 'I wish someone had told me about the rowing though...' The Briney Brick 70 (a): Meanwhile, still far, far away... by Jan Kusters, on Flickr 'My dearest Petronella Gertruda, I have finally been offered my first command! I will be in charge of a fort at Whale Island. I will also be in charge of the rest of the Island! I am a deputy Governor so to speak! No more counting uniforms, no more signing paperwork! Granted, I had hoped for a slightly bigger detail at my disposal, but I am sure I can make something of the recruit I have been issued. And the sergeant seems to be an experienced man, if a bit rough. Best wishes and love, forever yours, Rupert... The Briney Brick 70 (c): Whale Rock Fort... by Jan Kusters, on Flickr It's not just the rowing; that old sergeant has some harrowing stories to tell! I think even our Lieutenant gets scared by his tales, although he does not show it... The Briney Brick 70 (a): Whale Rock Fort... by Jan Kusters, on Flickr Finally! The Briney Brick 70 (b): Whale Rock Fort... by Jan Kusters, on Flickr Soon life on the outpost fell into some sort of routine... The Briney Brick 71 (a): Atten...TION! by Jan Kusters, on Flickr 'Morning sergeant. Have the men... man... up on the platform, ready for inspection sergeant.' 'Sir!' 'Dear lord this is sad, we really need to flesh out our detail a little on the first possible occasion sergeant.' 'Sir yes Sir!' The Briney Brick 71 (c): Atten...TION! by Jan Kusters, on Flickr 'Every now and again we stumble into some left overs from former Outpost crews. Like the skeleton of a prisoner in the brig, And the one on the roof. Although I don't think that was a prisoner...' The Briney Brick 71 (d): Atten...TION! by Jan Kusters, on Flickr 'Ahum... uhm, sergeant? Why is there a skeleton standing to attention?' 'Left over from the last detail Sir. I remobilized him Sir.' 'Yes I could hear some rather colourful language coming down through the roof sergeant... But he is dead!' 'Still a soldier Sir. Got his shako and everything Sir. ' 'Dead, sergeant, he's very dead! He's just a skeleton! How is he even standing to attention?' 'Four years as drill-sergeant Sir.' 'Yes, right. Well... Take him below, find an empty box, we'll send him off for a decent funeral with the first supply ship sergeant.' 'Sir Yes Sir. PRIVATE BONES!!! DIS... wait for it you rattling heap of calcium... MISSED!!!' Yes, life at an outpost is never dull... Entr'acte: Whale Rock Outpost by Jan Kusters, on Flickr Time for a little exposé in broad daylight of my Imperial Outpost./Fortress. The fortress has a few rather 'intimidating' sides, but also a slightly less intimidating and more 'improvised' looking side. Never look behind the golden curtains... Big canon on the front, tall look out tower, and some enclosed spaces for the crew. Note that it is not a 'roof top canon' like so many Lego sets offer. I have always had my doubts in roofs as a big gun platforms... The back (and one side) offer a small dock with a rather minimal crane to load and unload goods. I think it is safe to say this is no harbour for large vessels... Entr'acte: Whale Rock Outpost by Jan Kusters, on Flickr The whole thing is based on the Sabre Island' set (6265) and the Broadside's Brigg' set (6259). I managed to get both sets not too expensive on Bricklink. I bought those to get an idea about how to do a fortress, but also because the sets offered a slightly cheaper way to get soldiers and a few expensive parts (bricked wall panels, big Imperial flag and soldiers). I liked the tower from Sabre Island a lot, and decided to keep it mostly 'as is' (added a few ladders and threw in one more panel). I also kept the basic prison cell from Broadside's Brigg, but sank it into the Rock (to keep it all within the small space I had for it). Since my display space is limited, I wanted to build it all on a 16x32 plate, no bigger. That is half the size of the classic Eldorado Fortress. But at the same time I wanted to get most 'functionality' into that smaller space. It turned out to be a but of a squeeze, but I like the general shape better than I expected. Entr'acte: Whale Rock Outpost by Jan Kusters, on Flickr For those looking for building detail (I.E. me when I want to rebuild this thing in a couple of years) showing the 4 sides. I know some bricks looked rather yellowed, and the while thing has a slightly rickety appearance; I like it that way. (in fact, I l like that so much that I am wondering if I could ordered 'yellowed' white stones from Bricklink for a castle I would one day like to build). I wanted it all to look like a very old building that has been handed down through many years, probably first build by the Spanish (hence the slightly 'Castello' look of the upper levels). Entr'acte: Whale Rock Outpost by Jan Kusters, on Flickr Taking it apart... This is perhaps the first time I tried to design and build a real interior. For play- and posing-possibilities roofs can easily be removed, as can part of a wall and the prison cell front. As it turns out, my wish to keep it all small made the interiors a bit TOO small to get into that with my camera. Ah well, at least it is a small build. And while taking pictures and telling stories is a big part of my pleasure, in the end, I mostly want a good looking build. And when put together, I am pretty happy with how my fortress looks... Entr'acte: Whale Rock Outpost by Jan Kusters, on Flickr The 'dirty' working backside; and a look into the barracks. Entr'acte: Whale Rock Outpost by Jan Kusters, on Flickr The officers can just squeeze by (no bed, real gentlemen sleep standing straight, leaning in a corner to avoid wrinkling) but the barracks with their bunk bed are really way too small for any posing or pictures. As for the sets all this was based on: Entr'acte: Imperials sets 6265 (Sabre Island) and 6259 (Broadside's Brig) by Jan Kusters, on Flickr The sets provided some 'special' parts I did not have yet (jail cell door, Imperial flags and, most important, Imperial Soldiers) plus some white and yellow bricks. But of course after receiving those sets, I had to build them as designed first, to get an idea about those sets, and just to see how they were. Sabre Island looks better in real life that in photo's. Although the watch tower is open on 2 sides and only fully closed at the front, it looks less like an open play set than I expected. Just add two ladders to the back, and you have a rather convincing watchtower... Broadside's Brig on the other hand is really just a play set. With doorways leading no where and an absolutely minimal jail cell, it looks more like a stage set from a play than like anything real. But, in true Lego tradition, the potential for play is huge. Places to put minifigs all over, and with its bright colours it does invite to do so. On the left in the background is my first attempt at 'Whale Rock', the base for what became my -very small and minimal- Imperial Outpost. Pity the poor soldiers who get banned to that outpost...