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Smiffy

Eagle Transporter

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When I was a wee nipper (back in the pre-Star Wars days), 2 of my favourite and most played with toys, were a pair of Dinky Eagle transporters from Space:1999. A white one and a green one.

I don't really remember much about the series. I was a bit too young to understand what was going on half the time and just remember it as all being a bit weird and psychedelic, but the Eagle was iconic. The real star of the show. B)

When AMT re-issued the old MPC/Airfix kit in 1999 (geddit? :rolleyes: ), I snapped one up straight away. It was soon apparent however that the old kit needed a lot of work to bring it up to scratch. So it's sat in my stash ever since, being pulled out on a few occasions only to remind me just how much work would be required.

I have toyed with the idea of purchasing one of the Warp resin and white metal kits from Comet Miniatures, but I've heard mixed reports about them, so I never got around to splashing the cash.

I think it's about time I gave this old kit a go.

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I don't intend to try and fix every little error in this thing. I'm going to try and improve the looks of a few key areas.

The biggest issue to me is the solid moulded cages. They just won't do, so I'll be drilling/cutting and filing these areas out.

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The exposed areas behind those cages will then need to be detailed. I've had a good googling session and managed to find some pretty decent reference pics of the original filming models. Again, I won't be trying to copy every little detail. Close enough is good enough, for me.

I've got plenty of plastic card and have stocked up on strip, rod, half rod, spheres and hemispheres, so I should be able to knock something semi decent up.

6.jpg

The landing legs and sidepods will be needing some tweaking and I'll be doing some work around the engines as well.

5.jpg

Along with a couple of other little jobs, I think that'll do me just fine.

Can't wait to get started. :)

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Looks like you have your hands full with this one but it also looks like you'll have a great result at the end....[thread creep..Where do you get your raw materials from, I have yet to do that much modding but am keen to give it a go.....thread creep end]

Good Luck

Graham

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Google 4d model shop.

Loads of goodies available there. ;)

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Google 4d model shop.

Loads of goodies available there. ;)

Thanks Smiffy - useful link

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I second that, it's full of useful things

Cheers

Edited by Graham77

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4D model shop - a palace of modelling goodness hidden under the arches near Fenchurch Street railway station, a wonderland of raw materials! My one regret after moving out of London is not being within walking distance of that super shop!

I had the Eagle back in the 70s and remember spending several evenings slowly whittling away the plastic from between the struts to give it a much better appearance. I cheated a few years ago and bought one of the die-cast/resin models from Product Enterprise for my shelf!

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Even an OOB Eagle can look good with some tweaks.

Here's mine from almost 10 years ago (done OOB with paint and decal tweaks only, no parts improvements):

e4-1.jpg

Still, the improvements you've got planned should make it a very nice project. I would love to open up the cages on one of the ones I've got in storage as well, but I know it won't be a quick project (not with the speed at which I work). I will certainly be watching your project with eager anticipation.

Edited by JMChladek

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Looking forward to this one Paul.

I built this when it first came out. Had to have one while watching the show :D Would love to get my hands on one these days but know I would have to fork out an arm and leg for it.

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Here's mine from almost 10 years ago (done OOB with paint and decal tweaks only, no parts improvements):

e4-1.jpg

That looks grand. :coolio:

Not sure what I'm going to do about the decals yet. The kit ones are a bit naff really and the only ones I've been able to find online, are some peel off sticker type markings, from Ebay.

Not sure if I like the idea of them. :hmmm:

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That looks grand. :coolio:

Not sure what I'm going to do about the decals yet. The kit ones are a bit naff really and the only ones I've been able to find online, are some peel off sticker type markings, from Ebay.

Not sure if I like the idea of them. :hmmm:

Just a thought, could you get hold of the stickers and scan them in and then get one of the guys on here to print them out on decal paper, as long as you do it all 1:1 the decals should come back the same size as the stickers and should require little work other than printing them, unless they have to be redrawn.. would be interested to see if it is this simple for your project and for future ones if anybody else knows the answer.

Graham

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A cool-looking craft, and I'm keen to see all the detailing you have in mind, will be very interesting! :popcorn:

Mike

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I've made a start on this today.

The first job is drilling out those cages. I thought it best to start on some of the less visible parts. That way I could work out the best way to proceed and if I made any mistakes, then it wouldn't matter too much.

First piece was the cage at the rear of the engines. I began by using a drill, going along making a series of holes and then using a knife to join them up.

It was soon apparent that this wasn't the way to proceed. I ended up with a couple of areas that are going to need some touching up.

So I switched to an awl and used it to repeatedly scribe around the edges of the material that needs removing.

It was more precise, but also more time consuming.

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I then started on the first outer cage part. Again using the scribing method.

The photo below shows the result of a good few hours work.

8.jpg

It still needs a little more cleaning up, but my fingers can't take anymore tonight.

This is going to take some time. :wacko:

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That's really impressive - it looks, as my dad would say, "like a bought one". By which I mean you can't tell that it wasn't moulded open.

Did you work from the inside on the U-shaped part?

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Well, I just did some checking and it turns out I still have my Macromedia Freehand file for the Alpha Moonbase logos I made for my Eagle all those years ago:

Rescue pod with logos

ep-1.jpg

I could make you a set of ALPS decals for a small nominal fee. Drop me an email if you want details. My reference was the original logos found on the Eagle Phil Rae once owned (and pictured in SF&FM magazine when they did the dedicated Space 1999 issue). My artwork is studio model correct while the Product Enterprise Eagles use artwork based on the old Airfix box.

I even did a set of custom Lunar Commission ones for a buddy of mine as well (for a VIP Eagle with the orange pod, he didn't want to use just Alpha Moonbase logos).

As for the cages, you're off to an excellent start there (nice, clean and precise). A battery powered cordless Dremel moto tool with the smallest engraving tip they make can make quick work of a lot of that (corded ones spin too fast IMHO). Then just use some needle files in the corners to clean up the edges.

Edited by JMChladek

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Did you work from the inside on the U-shaped part?

Cheers. :thumbsup2:

If you mean the L shaped bit near the rectangular leg attachment box, then it's a bit of both. I scribed on the outside at the cage edges and on the inside around the edge of the box. Then it was just a matter of joining the two and cleaning up. Seemed the best way to go about it. :)

Well, I just did some checking and it turns out I still have my Macromedia Freehand file for the Alpha Moonbase logos I made for my Eagle all those years ago:

I could make you a set of ALPS decals for a small nominal fee. Drop me an email if you want details. My reference was the original logos found on the Eagle Phil Rae once owned (and pictured in SF&FM magazine when they did the dedicated Space 1999 issue). My artwork is studio model correct while the Product Enterprise Eagles use artwork based on the old Airfix box.

They look good. I might just take you up on that offer, thanks. ;)

As for the cages, you're off to an excellent start there (nice, clean and precise). A battery powered cordless Dremel moto tool with the smallest engraving tip they make can make quick work of a lot of that (corded ones spin too fast IMHO). Then just use some needle files in the corners to clean up the edges.

Thanks.

I don't really trust myself with a motor tool on the main cage parts, though. There's some pretty tight spaces there and I know what'll happen with my sausage fingers. :rolleyes:

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Good work so far, but I remember it being a long slow careful process when i did it back in the 70s!

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I don't really trust myself with a motor tool on the main cage parts, though. There's some pretty tight spaces there and I know what'll happen with my sausage fingers. :rolleyes:

So it's a case of awl or nothing? :coat:

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So it's a case of awl or nothing? :coat:

:tumble:

:rolleyes:

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All terrible puns aside, that's a great bit of work Smiffy! As Will said, it looks like it came that way, well done!

J.

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Thanks chaps. Much appreciated. :thumbsup2:

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Great start Smiffy,

I have the Warp kit in the stash and looking at it against what you are doing with this kit, I'm not sure which is the most work.

The white metal top cage on the Warp kit needs some serious cleaning up as do most of the resin parts.

Keep up the good work.

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That brings back a few memories. I had one when they first came out, and after it had been built for a few years I also opened up the cages in a bid to improve it. I seem to remember that it took a very long time to cut all the bits out (along with the odd bit of finger too). I was quite pleased with my efforts until I compared it with one of the original 44" ones from the show (mate of mine owns one of them).

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A little update, just to show some slow progress. :wacko:

9.jpg

Got the first half basically done now and made a start on the second.

11.jpg

10.jpg

Once I've got all the cage parts opened up, I'll dig the needle files out and give everything a final clean up.

I also got one of these to assist in that process.

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I thought I may as well order a set of these from Ebay, to see what they're like.

13.jpg

As there are some spare markings on the sheet, I'll test a couple out before deciding if I'm going to use them. :hmmm:

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