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Aliens Dropship and APC


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May I set the ball rolling with my build thread for this GB.

I present the legendary Aliens Dropship by Halcyon. I'm teaming this up with a resin APC by Gonzoid Models, sourced from Comet Miniatures. I'd love to get my hands on the Halcyon APC but its the wrong scale to work with the Dropship. My intention is to build a diorama of the "deploy and dust off" moment in the movie. The closes you get to see of this is screencapped here:


as the action switches from the dropship flying in over the complex to a close up of the ramp touching down and the APC deploying before switching back into the two shot shown above.

So here is the box and sprue shots in preparation for the build starting at the weekend:






I can't wait to begin - I may have to build this one before my Hawker Hunter Miss Demeanour for the Hunter GB!!

I say we take off and nuke them from orbit, its the only way to be sure.

Edited by Kallisti
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Looking forward to seeing this come together. I built the drop ship donkeys years ago and was always slightly disappointed that it didn't come with an APC. I seem to remember that the there were a couple of pronlems.; mainly that the "wings" were only butt joined to the body and kept falling off, and secondly that there wasn't an actual bay inside the ship, but I'm sure you can fix that.

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Will be watching this one. :popcorn:

I have a couple of these myself.

Like you, I'm planning to do the touchdown at Hadleys Hope with one of them. Don't have the resin APC though. Years ago I started to scratchbuild one using the 35th kit as a guide. Had started to detail the cockpit and main cabin of the Dropship (including racks of Pulse Rifles) as well, before it all got packed away again.

Look forward to seeing your progress. B)

"We're in the pipe, five by five"

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This should make for a great little scene with what appears to be two nice looking kits. Looking forward to seeing what you are able to do with them and in the mean time I may have to get the movie out and have another watch of it, its been some years now since i last saw it.

Good Luck


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Can't recall where, but I saw a Drop Ship Tiger Meet whiff on a forum a few months back; very cool. Still like the movie version best, though!

"...one-way elevator to Hell, goin' DOWWWWWNNN!!"

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Its a Bug Hunt!

Starting on the APC. This is a big block of resin, quite roughly cast in solid but brittle resin. it looks like it was cast from a scratch-built master as you can still see some of the joins from the master in the cast resin. its taken quite a bit of cleaning up and a lot of sanding to get rid of a chunky mould line that ran around the uppser sides.


The wheels to had a lot of "flash" and were quite crudely finished. I've given them a good clean up and now they look presentable.


Problem is they are not a good representation of the original!


I think I'll just have to make do the best I can!

In that screencap you can also see how inaccurate the main gun is. I'm alrady planning to replace the barrels on the front cannon as the mouldings on these were essentially just blobs. you can see how they are supposed to look here:


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I hate it when I can smell resin while sanding! Its not a good sign coz it means your mask is leaking and you could be breathing in that nasty shi**! This block of resin has needed a lot of sanding to get rid of the truly awful moulding lines. Its now been primed, filled and sanded a bit more.


There were several "gaps" and pits that needed filling - some of them appeared to be seams on the original master that didn't fit well.

The wheels got a good sanding as well. They are now much flatter than they were which makes them look more like the originals, but they are still too skinny by far. However I'm just going to live with that as I don't feel up to scratch building something this small. They've been painted up as you can see and look fine to me.

I've also painted the front turret and drilled out the cannon nozzles. As you can see from the previous pictures, these cannon seems to have some sort of star-like fitting in the muzzle, however at this scale I don't think I've got anything that can reproduce that look so it stays as it. I've added some bits to the main cannons to bulk out the barrel and add the plate on the upper surface that is visible, particularly this one which is of the RC model used in the movie


I'm about ready to give the main body its coat of Nato Green, stay tuned...

Edited by Kallisti
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I hate it when I can smell resin while sanding! Its not a good sign coz it means your mask is leaking and you could be breathing in that nasty shi**!

Just pop the packaging of any R-Flight resin (Mirage 2000D/N update set, for example) and the smell hits you! Can't be too careful when working with PUR, though: a fine-particle filter will stop nasty stuff getting up your nose, but it will remain in the environment. Keeping everything (very) wet is the way to go; if it's too big to dunk in a bowl of water keep spraying it with a plant leaf sprayer. Flush the residual sludge, and wash everything carefully when you're done.

*HAACCKK!!!* Mmm...time for a ciggie...

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More done yesterday: First off lets look at the main gun. I've added a couple of small plastic card shims to the outer sides of the barrels to give them more a more accurate shape. Plus that large block to attach it to the APC has to go!


So its beem removed and replace by a short strip of I beam girder that will sit nicely between the two rails cast intot he main body. It will also allow the gun to have a more "dynamic" angle.


Next, there is a funny "U" shaped casting on the top of the APC, visible here where its been sanded down a little


This appears to be a fitting for something but nothing was included in the kit. Looking at my research I discover that its a spotlight fitting which has a wire guard in front of it. This is visible here:


So lets start by scratch building the spotlight. Its little more than a rectangular block with a curved back edge with a light stuck in the front a bit like this:



and when painted up:


This shows the rear of the APC after its had a black wash


So for the wire guard to go over the front I've used some steel mesh I've got in the Meccano spares box along with some 10A fuse wire for the out frame to create this:


So also noticable in the vidcap above is the shackles on the front of the APC, so these were added with some fine wire:


So thats where I got to as of this morning. This afternoon, I'm applying a wash to the overall APC body, the main gun will get painted and the spotlight and guard will also be attached. If this goes well, the wheels may go on as well!

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And so dear reader, we come to the end of Act 1: The APC.


Wheels on and set turning. This vehicle is 4 wheel steering, so I've set both sets of wheels in a turn. These are packed with milliput to give support to the axle joints.


You can see the spotlight and guard on the top of the APC - turned out quite well I'm pleased to say.



Its been given a black wash, but no further weathering for now. There will need to be more later, but I'll hold off until I can see it in context with the rest of the diorama before getting heavy on the weathering.

Well thats the easy bit done. Next: the Dropship. First task is goign to be opening up the bottom of the fuselage to create the bay for the APC. In the first picture above you can see the landing ramp behind the APC. I'm going to use this to mark up the hole that needs cutting.



"How do I get out of this chicken-poo-poo outfit?"

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After a couple of days away from the modelling table as a break, I'm back with the dropship. Just as an experiment, I tried a btt of a dry fitting to see how things went together. Its an odd shape and I didn't fully understand where the main component went until I did this:


and here is the missile pylon


and the inserts that are supposed to represent the tip and tail of the missiles


In comparison this is what its supposed to look like:


One of the first things that is immediately obvious is the number of missiles is wrong. In the movie, it 4x4 but the inserts have 5x4!

So lets move on to look at the three main areas of interest (aka scratch building) in this model:

1) APC Bay

2) Cockpit

3) Missile pylons

For the APC bay, as you've already seen in previous photos, the base of the dropship is solid, even though there is a ramp, there is no opening to the bay. So we are going to have to cut a hole and build a bay! Here we see the ramp placed against the base of the dropship where it would have folded up.


As you can see its too long and will overlap the front part, so we move it backwards a bit and it will fit:


I'll have to scratch build and interior of the bay but fortunately, there are a couple of shots in the movie that give you an idea of whats inside:


So its going to be out with the plasticard and some scratch building!.

For the cockpit, I have some US chopper pilots from CMK I can use and to detail the cockpit (which OOB is empty apart from a couple of bucket seats, I've got an order in for some cheap resin ejector seats and some PE consoles. I basically chose the cheapest sets I could find from Hannants! I think the resin seats are Aries seats for a Tomcat and the PE is for a Phantom. Here are the pilots:


Sadly one is not female so Cpl. Ferro may need some surgery! Pvt. Spunkmeyer will be okay as is I think!

Thats all for now... Remember: short, controlled bursts.

Edited by Kallisti
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This is shaping up really well Kallisti, sounds like you've got a lot of work ahead of you, but it also sounds like you've definintely got a plan! :)

Probably a very silly / annoying question. How are you actually going to do the diorama? Is the APC going to be in the Bay, or outside it? Only asking 'cos I'm guessing it wouldn't have its wheels turned if it was inside the bay? :)


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I am going to be watching this build mate, Aliens is one of my all time faves! I would love the dropship, APC, and power loader kits but unfortunately can't afford two mortgages! :popcorn:

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The diorama is going to be based on the first vidcap I posted in the thread - ie when the APC is on the ground and the dropship is turning away - that allows me to have the wheels turned on the APC and an interesting angle on the dropship, not sure I can represent the rain however haha :)

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