This was built for the 'Out of Your Comfort Zone' contest - I drew the Steampunk category, which is certainly a new direction for me! Joss Whedon's Firefly/Serenity, with its wild west overtones, seemed like an ideal candidate for steampunkification.
After fighting on the losing side in the American Civil War, captain Malachi Reynolds makes a living transporting goods - legal or otherwise - around the edges of the USA in his 'Cicada' class steam-powered gyrolifter.
This is my biggest MOC since I started posting on MOCpages (72 studs long, give or take one or two for the angled front) so my usual photographic setup isn't big enough! Any advice on technique welcomed...
The angled neck and cockpit were done using techniques I've not tried before - and for once my high school trigonometry came in useful :-)
Captain Reynolds and his pilot, Horace 'Burn' Washburne, are stationed in the cockpit. Gyrolifters are tricky to handle and Burn is one of the best pilots out there.
The viewport in the neck of the ship is vital during landing, due to the lack of downward visibility from the cockpit.
The base of the ship contains the cargo hold, where Mal's current cargo and the essential coal supply are stowed.
Through the side shutter you can just about see the ladder leading up from the hold to the main deck.
Here's 'Bessie' - the Stevenson & Watt high pressure steam engine that keeps Serenity in the air. You can also see where the hold ladder emerges.
Mercenary Japheth Cobb has just returned from the hold after doing his favourite duty on board - checking the arms and ammo. That quad-barrelled revolver looks ideal for the next landfall in bandit country; compact, but intimidating.
Serenity flies like a dream, but in-flight maintanence can be fairly hair-raising. That's why native American engineers, like Kaylee Running Deer, are in high demand - for their fearlessness and uncanny head for heights.
Steam pipes from the main boiler tank lead out to the wing gyropods, which provide lift. Additionally, the wings contain large water tanks.
Turning the wheel at the base of the wing allows the wing pods to be angled forward or back for additional thrust or braking. It's not elegant, but it works.
However, most of the forward momentum comes from the 'bug's tail', which uses high pressure steam jets to provide thrust.
The fins around the bug's tail are essential for maintaining the correct pressure, and can open out to dissipate excess heat from the engine.
The main boiler tank is a triumph of late 19th century engineering, and also makes great coffee!
Some more overall views to finish....
Fourth wall: I was happy to get 'steampunk' as a category because I already had a few ideas for subject matter; and in view of the time limit and general pre-Christmas busy-ness, I foolishly went for the most ambitious one! This was a blast to build though, even if I did have a few late nights as a result. I really liked the Firefly TV series and there's no way my Lego supply would stretch to doing a minifig scale model of the 'real' Serenity - so it's great to have the opportunity in this contest to do a tribute on a smaller scale.
This is fantastic! Thanks for sharing. I'm a co-presenter and co-producer of a "Firefly"/"Serenity" podcast from the UK and we would love to have you on the show to speak about your build and what inspired you. If you are interested, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
August 24, 2012
I've never been able to finish the movie I've tried three times and always get stopped right after they rob the bank and the raper chases them back to the ship and then when they go to rescue whatever her name is and meet the black dude. I could have just said that last part, but my memory kept flowing as I wrote. Anyways I hope one day to finish thee at hung serenity. I'm glad I got to see your alternative design, cheers ;)
Here comes my judgment. Photo: I will give you 4,5/5 just for some photos I didn´t like. Theme: 5/5 this is 100% steampunk. Overall build: 9/10 This is one of the best MOCs in this contest and I want to see you in next round. 18,5/20.
Wow... Okay, Time to judge.
Photography: 4/5. Most of the pictures were 5 points worthy but several of them had a not comepletely white background and that last picture is grainy and shot at a wierd angle.
Theme Representation: 5/5. About as SteamPunk-y as you can get!
Overall Build: 9/10. I think the one thing that looked a little weak/fragile/inadequately-proportioned are the two things holding the helicopter blades up, they seem too thin or something. But I really liked how well you got that cockpit to look, and absolutely loved that back engine section.
Overall Score: 18/20. Great job and I hope I shall see some more steampunk stuff from you later on. :)
This is especially impressive. I like the distinct shape you made. I also liked the different features and rooms you put into your ship. This extra inside view adds depth to your creation. Even though this isn't your comfort zone, I think this creation is better than most of my Steampunk. Great job! I enjoyed looking at "Steampunk 'Serenity.'"
There is just so much in this. Great level of detail. Cool idea to use the Serenity, that ship is so weird looking anyway, so why not throw in some steampunk. My favourite part has to be the forward thruster.