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  1. Hello All, I initially posted very preliminary photos of my WIP for the U-Wing on this thread here: not wanting to make a new thread until I had done some real work on the project and was actually close to having it done. Well, that time has come. Still a WIP, but I have much of the build done. Wanted to share here to (1) demonstrate a little about the build, and things that I wanted to accomplish, and (2) get opinions on things that are still left to do. The pics are not high quality…. Again, the purpose of this was just to present the project…. Still in progress and pics are definitely preliminary. First of all, goals of the build are fairly simple: - This is primarily a Technic build. Although I struggled to know where to post this WIP, here or the Technic forum, I chose here because ultimately I think it applied more here and I need more opinions regarding looks, authenticity, etc., rather than the technical aspects of the build. So, please keep this in mind when having a look. Many angles, etc. could have been done better with system bricks, but that was not the objective. Although admittedly not trying to place my WIP in the same camp as Drakmin’s snowspeeder or WIP X-Wing; that is the look that I am kinda going for. - BBeing Technic there has to be some technical aspects to the build. Most importantly, mechanized retracting wings. There have been some great MODs and even MOCs so far of the U-Wing, but to my knowledge all have manual moving wings, but in the purest sense, like, you really have to move them by hand (manus in Latin). My goal is to have retractable wings, manualized, but not by hand. Technic-style – gears and all. This part of the build is done. It works great – video to come once the whole project is done. The cargo door also opens, manually, but is not mechanized. TThe mechanism to move the wings was easy enough, worm gear to 8T gear to series of 12t gears that move 8t gears that meshes with 40t gears built into the wings. Using the worm gear was important, given that no motor (to lock gears moving backwards) was used. I needed something that moved only one direction. Worm gear produces this in that they only drive gears, and are not driven by them. This allows me to really tighten the wings close to the body of the ship when in their forward and backwards positions so that they would stay there; without the use of a pin, or a knob, or anything to lock them in place. The official set and other MODs or MOCs use pins or some connectors to secure the wings. But not this MOC - that was the goal. - Getting the wings to move was actually the easy part, the hard part was getting them to move into the correct forward position. Because I am working with Lego, there are no ways around its limitations, meaning, the limitations of ABS. The wings are long, and get quite heavy (for Lego) and gravity does pull them down. Slightly, very slightly, but it is enough to make them going into the forward position difficult. There is no bending in the actual wing, but only at the junction of liftarms to the 40t gear. The bending is very little, still, when the wings are moved in the forward position there needed to be some slight slope at the bottom of the fuselage that gradually helped them move to the correct position. Therefore the fuselage may be a little oddly shaped, but only because of this reason. The slope was achieved by using Technic panels As can be seen in the picture above, the wings fit snugly in the their forwards position. - System bricks are used on the engines, the cockpit, and the greeblies in the back of the ship . Other than that, mostly Technic bricks are used. There characteristic grills at the back cover the knob that controls the wings. Things still to do are: - Determine the size and shape of wing - Color of cockpit canopy - Engines - Modify the upper-level of ship (I will explain this below) Lets start with the first one: Admittedly, the wings are a little wide. I did this on purpose to test the rigidity of the wing. As I mentioned before, rigidity of the wing was paramount as I wanted to mechanize their movement into forwards/backwards position and gravity pulling the wings down was initially a problem. But now that the mechanism works well, and I examine the wings further….. I kinda like them a little wider. What do others think? I know it takes away from some of the fidelity of the build… but I like them a little wider. To be honest, absolute fidelity to a build has never been a number one priority to me – for the following reason. Number one – do an internet search on U wings, and you will find there is no “pure” rendition. Actually, many different variations exist. Colors differ, wing length differs, etc. Number two - Although Sci-Fri; if we were to try and relate to some of the ships in SW to the greatest extent possible I am sure they would be built and produced much like the machines of today. Namely, you have a first, primary model but then several, sometimes dozens, of variations around that primary model. Take the aircraft of today; you have a first model but then so many decedents. I am currently on a trip and flew on an Airbus 319 to get there. Out of curiosity, I looked it up. There are over 20 variations. Almost like the living, breathing aspects of human life. To me that makes things more real. My model could be named like UT-60 WB (wide body) U-Wing Star fighter or something. But…. I do think making the wings more slender is possible…. But I want other’s thoughts before I jump right in. Second thing to still do – in the pics you see the canopy being LBG in color. As explained above, I don’t see a problem being a little different than the original model (which is all white)…. And I definitely like the LBG color. Thoughts? It can be done in white, replacing the toggle connectors at the top of the front of the canopy with Technic Angled Connector #3. They are about the same angle and come in white. Also, about coloring other aspects of the ship. Because wing integrity is of utmost importance, I will not add blue markings on the outer edge of the wings, like are in most of the pics of the model. While this is possible to do, even with Technic, it will compromise the strength of the wings because of their altered orientation than the other liftarms in the wings. Likely, I will also not be adding yellow smatterings here and there like on the real ship. Third thing to finish – here are the engines. Not completed. Just a concept. Actually, the while part of the engine will be beveled with these parts here: BL order is placed. I need many white plates and the cornered, sloped bricks seen above to do this. I should have the engines completed in the next week when the order arrives. Fourth thing to do: The most significant part of the build I still need to do, and that is, somehow find a way to modify the upper-level of the ship so that there are not 3 studs above the wings. I am not liking how it is now. The fuselage has to be at lease 5 studs high. The wings are 3 studs thick... because of the gears. And there has to be a layer at the top and bottom (thus 5 studs) to secure the 8t gears. Because I don't want to leave the top of the ship looking like the very first picture I posted, another layer needs to be added, which I like with the panels, etc. as in the second picture added. However, it is too high. Three layers of bricks above the wings is too much. But, I think it will be easy to replace the top layer with the panels as in the second picture. The trick will be to replace the layer with the panels without compromising the rigidity of the fuselage. More to come on this..... and I think this will be the most significant last obstacle to overcome. Once this is done, I think all the rest will be easy. Have a look see… still WIP and comments are very much appreciated and welcome!