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Tips and tricks to starting a micro space ship build.
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Hello everyone I just thought I'd throw this out to everyone. I have so questions on how to start a micro. First where do you start, the back the front? Second how not to make it blocky? Third, to make the ship big but still keep it a micro. Fourth, I'm going to use Tim c's battleship Orion as an example, the amount of detail that he put into that battleship just blows my mind, put lots of detail in without making it look clustered. And lastly the rear engines why pieces do I use to get some good eninge pieces?

If anyone can answer any of these quesions I'm all ears.
Thanks, Garett Smith
Permalink
| July 24, 2012, 12:10 pm
Quoting Garett Smith
Hello everyone I just thought I'd throw this out to everyone. I have so questions on how to start a micro. First where do you start, the back the front? Second how not to make it blocky? Third, to make the ship big but still keep it a micro. Fourth, I'm going to use Tim c's battleship Orion as an example, the amount of detail that he put into that battleship just blows my mind, put lots of detail in without making it look clustered. And lastly the rear engines why pieces do I use to get some good eninge pieces?

If anyone can answer any of these quesions I'm all ears.
Thanks, Garett Smith


Hey, Garett. First off, I want to thank you for the interest in the Orion, and in response to your comment, I would be honored if you sited it as an inspiration for your build. Itís that kind of stuff that keeps this community going.

I am going to address your questions, but please keep in mind that these are my own opinions, and there are much better builders than me on this site that use more advanced techniques and some that can use simpler techniques and put them to better use than I can with mine.

Anyhow, to your questions. So, where do you start your build? Simple. It doesnít matter. I know that David Alexander Smith can relate to this, but my builds always start with an idea. The Orion started with the bridge up front, (or what I call the forecastle, I like to attach nautical terms to ships); the Prowler started with the thrusters; and the Firestorm started with the SNOT wings. From there I let my builds evolve to the finished product, but it is a good idea to start with a basic idea of where you want to go with it, (a VERY basic idea, I donít think itís a good idea to include a lot of detail in your head unless you're building a replica. Youíre bound to change something before youíre through).

Donít be afraid to demolish a part of your ship that youíre proud of. If it doesnít fit well with the whole, itís better to can the idea and move on. I did this A LOT with the back section of the Orion. Also, if youíre not happy with the whole and want to start over, do it, but try to keep some part that youíre proud of and try to incorporate it in your next attempt. Be ready for inspiration at all times.

As for the detail, I refer to my style as textured. I find the inspiration for this in Star Destroyers and the Millennium Falcon. The look of these ships is what really drew me to the Star Wars-esque designs. There is a Star Wars book that is called, I believe, Ultimate Cross-Sections. Check it out, it has some great greebling ideas. Your best pieces for this are tiles of all shapes and sizes and any piece that puts the studs on the outside of your bricks. There are many out there. Here is a shot of my favorite one: http://www.bricklink.com/catalogItem.asp?P=44728. I donít like long stretches of smooth sides, so I use one of these, or any variation, to break up the monotony. Try to use pieces that have texture built into them when you can. Donít be afraid to get frustrated, because you will.

As for the thrusters, itís the hinge pieces that make this possible. I used a lot of them for the Orion. Not just on the thrusters but on the top of the front section and the top and bottom of the rear.

Finally, take the time to sneak a peak at some of the works of some of the more adept ship builders on this site. If I may make a suggestion: Jon B, Mark Kelso, Thomas Haas, Garry King, Sven Junga, Jason Corlett, just to name a few. These guys are masters of the craft, and just looking at their works will help. I hope that you found this useful and feel free to ask any more questions, Iím happy to answer them as best I can.
Permalink
| July 24, 2012, 8:21 pm
Quoting Tim C

Hey, Garett. First off, I want to thank you for the interest in the Orion, and in response to your comment, I would be honored if you sited it as an inspiration for your build. Itís that kind of stuff that keeps this community going.

I am going to address your questions, but please keep in mind that these are my own opinions, and there are much better builders than me on this site that use more advanced techniques and some that can use simpler techniques and put them to better use than I can with mine.

Anyhow, to your questions. So, where do you start your build? Simple. It doesnít matter. I know that David Alexander Smith can relate to this, but my builds always start with an idea. The Orion started with the bridge up front, (or what I call the forecastle, I like to attach nautical terms to ships); the Prowler started with the thrusters; and the Firestorm started with the SNOT wings. From there I let my builds evolve to the finished product, but it is a good idea to start with a basic idea of where you want to go with it, (a VERY basic idea, I donít think itís a good idea to include a lot of detail in your head unless you're building a replica. Youíre bound to change something before youíre through).

Donít be afraid to demolish a part of your ship that youíre proud of. If it doesnít fit well with the whole, itís better to can the idea and move on. I did this A LOT with the back section of the Orion. Also, if youíre not happy with the whole and want to start over, do it, but try to keep some part that youíre proud of and try to incorporate it in your next attempt. Be ready for inspiration at all times.

As for the detail, I refer to my style as textured. I find the inspiration for this in Star Destroyers and the Millennium Falcon. The look of these ships is what really drew me to the Star Wars-esque designs. There is a Star Wars book that is called, I believe, Ultimate Cross-Sections. Check it out, it has some great greebling ideas. Your best pieces for this are tiles of all shapes and sizes and any piece that puts the studs on the outside of your bricks. There are many out there. Here is a shot of my favorite one: http://www.bricklink.com/catalogItem.asp?P=44728. I donít like long stretches of smooth sides, so I use one of these, or any variation, to break up the monotony. Try to use pieces that have texture built into them when you can. Donít be afraid to get frustrated, because you will.

As for the thrusters, itís the hinge pieces that make this possible. I used a lot of them for the Orion. Not just on the thrusters but on the top of the front section and the top and bottom of the rear.

Finally, take the time to sneak a peak at some of the works of some of the more adept ship builders on this site. If I may make a suggestion: Jon B, Mark Kelso, Thomas Haas, Garry King, Sven Junga, Jason Corlett, just to name a few. These guys are masters of the craft, and just looking at their works will help. I hope that you found this useful and feel free to ask any more questions, Iím happy to answer them as best I can.

Thank you so much! This means so much to me comming from you. I often look up to your creations for ideas. I'll look up those builders you told me and I'll tell you what I'm planning to build with all of this knowledge. In construction right now is an entire micro space battleship fleet! I'm working on the biggest one right know and am going to work my way down in size. I'll add the creation as one big fleet all together. I hope you are going to enjoy what I'm building because I can feel that it's going to turn out great! Thanks again for the info I'm going to be constantly reading this over and over :)
Permalink
| July 24, 2012, 9:33 pm
 Group admin 
Quoting Tim C

Hey, Garett. First off, I want to thank you for the interest in the Orion, and in response to your comment, I would be honored if you sited it as an inspiration for your build. Itís that kind of stuff that keeps this community going.

I am going to address your questions, but please keep in mind that these are my own opinions, and there are much better builders than me on this site that use more advanced techniques and some that can use simpler techniques and put them to better use than I can with mine.

Anyhow, to your questions. So, where do you start your build? Simple. It doesnít matter. I know that David Alexander Smith can relate to this, but my builds always start with an idea. The Orion started with the bridge up front, (or what I call the forecastle, I like to attach nautical terms to ships); the Prowler started with the thrusters; and the Firestorm started with the SNOT wings. From there I let my builds evolve to the finished product, but it is a good idea to start with a basic idea of where you want to go with it, (a VERY basic idea, I donít think itís a good idea to include a lot of detail in your head unless you're building a replica. Youíre bound to change something before youíre through).

Donít be afraid to demolish a part of your ship that youíre proud of. If it doesnít fit well with the whole, itís better to can the idea and move on. I did this A LOT with the back section of the Orion. Also, if youíre not happy with the whole and want to start over, do it, but try to keep some part that youíre proud of and try to incorporate it in your next attempt. Be ready for inspiration at all times.

As for the detail, I refer to my style as textured. I find the inspiration for this in Star Destroyers and the Millennium Falcon. The look of these ships is what really drew me to the Star Wars-esque designs. There is a Star Wars book that is called, I believe, Ultimate Cross-Sections. Check it out, it has some great greebling ideas. Your best pieces for this are tiles of all shapes and sizes and any piece that puts the studs on the outside of your bricks. There are many out there. Here is a shot of my favorite one: http://www.bricklink.com/catalogItem.asp?P=44728. I donít like long stretches of smooth sides, so I use one of these, or any variation, to break up the monotony. Try to use pieces that have texture built into them when you can. Donít be afraid to get frustrated, because you will.

As for the thrusters, itís the hinge pieces that make this possible. I used a lot of them for the Orion. Not just on the thrusters but on the top of the front section and the top and bottom of the rear.

Finally, take the time to sneak a peak at some of the works of some of the more adept ship builders on this site. If I may make a suggestion: Jon B, Mark Kelso, Thomas Haas, Garry King, Sven Junga, Jason Corlett, just to name a few. These guys are masters of the craft, and just looking at their works will help. I hope that you found this useful and feel free to ask any more questions, Iím happy to answer them as best I can.


Thanks for the namecheck Tim, and the great advice. I'll add a couple of my own in too. I find with Micro scale you can work wonders by simply looking at large or unexpected pieces at mini-fig scale through the eyes of micro-scale. I would give the example of the float I used as the focus for my Hammerhead craft. Also, at larger scale, to help avoid the blocky look, try working out an unusual shape via a skeleton; then, by as it were, hanging pieces off this at angles, you can escape the brick up build look and get some very interesting shapes. As Tim notes, often large micro-scale building is also problem solving. I look forward to seeing the fruits of your labour on here soon.
Permalink
| July 25, 2012, 9:02 am
Quoting David Alexander Smith

Thanks for the namecheck Tim, and the great advice. I'll add a couple of my own in too. I find with Micro scale you can work wonders by simply looking at large or unexpected pieces at mini-fig scale through the eyes of micro-scale. I would give the example of the float I used as the focus for my Hammerhead craft. Also, at larger scale, to help avoid the blocky look, try working out an unusual shape via a skeleton; then, by as it were, hanging pieces off this at angles, you can escape the brick up build look and get some very interesting shapes. As Tim notes, often large micro-scale building is also problem solving. I look forward to seeing the fruits of your labour on here soon.

Yeah, I like forward to it being finished too. It's proving to be fun, yet the most frustrating build for me yet. I have been playing with the photo editing program GIMP for this one, and figuring that program out has taken a little extra time for me, but bear with me, I should have it up in hopefully about a week.
Permalink
| July 25, 2012, 11:12 am
Quoting Tim C

Hey, Garett. First off, I want to thank you for the interest in the Orion, and in response to your comment, I would be honored if you sited it as an inspiration for your build. Itís that kind of stuff that keeps this community going.

I am going to address your questions, but please keep in mind that these are my own opinions, and there are much better builders than me on this site that use more advanced techniques and some that can use simpler techniques and put them to better use than I can with mine.

Anyhow, to your questions. So, where do you start your build? Simple. It doesnít matter. I know that David Alexander Smith can relate to this, but my builds always start with an idea. The Orion started with the bridge up front, (or what I call the forecastle, I like to attach nautical terms to ships); the Prowler started with the thrusters; and the Firestorm started with the SNOT wings. From there I let my builds evolve to the finished product, but it is a good idea to start with a basic idea of where you want to go with it, (a VERY basic idea, I donít think itís a good idea to include a lot of detail in your head unless you're building a replica. Youíre bound to change something before youíre through).

Donít be afraid to demolish a part of your ship that youíre proud of. If it doesnít fit well with the whole, itís better to can the idea and move on. I did this A LOT with the back section of the Orion. Also, if youíre not happy with the whole and want to start over, do it, but try to keep some part that youíre proud of and try to incorporate it in your next attempt. Be ready for inspiration at all times.

As for the detail, I refer to my style as textured. I find the inspiration for this in Star Destroyers and the Millennium Falcon. The look of these ships is what really drew me to the Star Wars-esque designs. There is a Star Wars book that is called, I believe, Ultimate Cross-Sections. Check it out, it has some great greebling ideas. Your best pieces for this are tiles of all shapes and sizes and any piece that puts the studs on the outside of your bricks. There are many out there. Here is a shot of my favorite one: http://www.bricklink.com/catalogItem.asp?P=44728. I donít like long stretches of smooth sides, so I use one of these, or any variation, to break up the monotony. Try to use pieces that have texture built into them when you can. Donít be afraid to get frustrated, because you will.

As for the thrusters, itís the hinge pieces that make this possible. I used a lot of them for the Orion. Not just on the thrusters but on the top of the front section and the top and bottom of the rear.

Finally, take the time to sneak a peak at some of the works of some of the more adept ship builders on this site. If I may make a suggestion: Jon B, Mark Kelso, Thomas Haas, Garry King, Sven Junga, Jason Corlett, just to name a few. These guys are masters of the craft, and just looking at their works will help. I hope that you found this useful and feel free to ask any more questions, Iím happy to answer them as best I can.

That helped me too.Thank you for sharing some of your inspiring knowledge.
Permalink
| July 25, 2012, 12:11 pm
 Group admin 
I'd also recommend looking at Master Shifu's work, for me he truly is a master http://www.mocpages.com/home.php/13947
Permalink
| July 25, 2012, 2:16 pm
 Group admin 
Quoting Garett Smith
Thanks I'll check him out. But what does the website address you put down have anything to do with micro scale lego building?

Sorry my mistake, that relates to something else I was emailing someone about. Here is the correct link http://www.mocpages.com/home.php/13947
Permalink
| July 25, 2012, 2:47 pm
Quoting David Alexander Smith
Sorry my mistake, that relates to something else I was emailing someone about. Here is the correct link http://www.mocpages.com/home.php/13947

That's ok everyone makes mistakes.
Permalink
| July 25, 2012, 2:51 pm
Quoting Garett Smith
Thank you so much! This means so much to me comming from you. I often look up to your creations for ideas. I'll look up those builders you told me and I'll tell you what I'm planning to build with all of this knowledge. In construction right now is an entire micro space battleship fleet! I'm working on the biggest one right know and am going to work my way down in size. I'll add the creation as one big fleet all together. I hope you are going to enjoy what I'm building because I can feel that it's going to turn out great! Thanks again for the info I'm going to be constantly reading this over and over :)

Wow! A fleet! You're going straight at this, then. Great! I can't wait to see what you come up with.

And I'm glad I could be of some help to you. Best of luck, Garett.
Permalink
| July 25, 2012, 11:26 pm
Quoting David Alexander Smith
I'd also recommend looking at Master Shifu's work, for me he truly is a master http://www.mocpages.com/home.php/13947

I second! He didn't even occur to me when I was dropping names on my first post, but you're right, David, there may not be a better, or more practiced, micro builder on this site.
Permalink
| July 25, 2012, 11:31 pm
I don't really have a process, most of my builds are doodles, by which I mean I start building and the ideas just come to me as I build.

For a micro project, I always find choosing tools and weapons for minifigs can be re-purposed as details for micro star ships. Using studs as "wheels" is also a common technique. Finally cheese wedges make excellent cockpit wind-shields.
Permalink
| December 15, 2012, 1:41 pm
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