Home » Community » It arrived! » 6877 Vector Detector
Search Search  
Show: Today's Messages    Show Polls    Message Navigator
6877 Vector Detector [message #41657] Tue, 10 January 2012 23:53 UTC Go to next message
avatar Oracle of Wuffing  is currently offline Oracle of Wuffing
Messages: 46
Registered: March 2009
Go to my shop

The thought process behind this goes back quite a way.

There's a mantra in LEGO construction called "SNOT." That is, Studs Not On Top. The basis of the mantra is that one can demonstrate skill and talent on a LEGO model by displaying the LEGO studs- where you build upon- on the sides, or even the bottom of the model. Or, in other words, since most people build from bottom-up, it's harder to show people that you're building from the sides.
Truth be told, it does have a very interesting aesthetic. However, what I don't like about that whole concept, is that it gets misinterpreted as showing no studs at all. When that happens, sure, you have a cool looking toy, but you have barely any room to actually build upon. See?

I've been stewing on the concept a while. I keep telling myself, well, if you're not going to leave us any room to build... Why bother going LEGO at all? Why not skip the middle man and just print the toy?

And, well, when Shapeways offered the 20.11 discount on WSF, that was enough motivation to get me to actually do that.
The Vector Detector is a little bit of a sentimental LEGO set for me. It was the first LEGO set I had (well... Actually, it was my brother's!) that wasn't just loose collections of bricks. It's from 1990's M:Tron line, and while you can see quite a few top studs, you can see a few attempts to get studs off on the sides. I've spent quite a lot of time rebuilding and adding on to it.

So, with a little bit of research and a few liberties taken, I rebuilt the thing for printing.
Normally, the box on the back of the ship attaches via magnets (Which is what the M meant, apparently), and even the ship's magnet are held in with a loosely swinging arm. While I have no doubt I could just glue a magnet to WSF, I wanted to try out some moving parts, and, well, most of this was a success.

And that would be the area to improve. Very Happy In the original model, these pieces actually snap on to the antennae, and rotate in to "lock" the windshield in position. I didn't give them enough clearance, so they fused into the antennae. That said, I'd rather they be fused in place like that than swinging around wildly, so I'll consider this a win.

I'm pretty certain I would never have the support to get this printed in FCS, so where there would normally be some decals, I went ahead and tried my best to improvise some sort of detail.

I spent way too long on that part. Laughing

Honestly, the fact that the box's lid didn't fuse into the box surprised me, there's not a lot of room there. I created the model with the box closed in case it did fuse, and then put a few pieces into the box like the original set has. Surprisingly, the box opens and closes quite easily... Though I think the pieces must have fallen out in processing. Oh well!

I don't have this available for public purchase. Halfly because I'm not too certain on the legalities of the situation, the other half being that it is quite pricey since it's a solid model with nothing hollowed out. But, I'll be playing with Sketchup and the model a little bit more, and see if I can make something less suited to LEGO strengths and more suited to printing strength. (I also occasionally am working on a Yellow Castle model- yes, it does fit within the printable bounding box!)

It wouldn't do to have pictures where moving parts are possible, so I made a video for this.
Re: 6877 Vector Detector [message #41691 is a reply to message #41657 ] Wed, 11 January 2012 17:48 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar stop4stuff  is currently offline stop4stuff
Messages: 3111
Registered: June 2010
Go to my shop
Shapie Expert
Very Cool!

You could add some colour using Full Colour Sandstone.

(another AFOL)
Re: 6877 Vector Detector [message #41720 is a reply to message #41691 ] Thu, 12 January 2012 00:43 UTC Go to previous messageGo to next message
avatar Oracle of Wuffing  is currently offline Oracle of Wuffing
Messages: 46
Registered: March 2009
Go to my shop

I'd love to use FCS for this, but it'd need another once-over on a lot of parts, because a whole lot of small bits (especially the hinge areas) are smaller than 2mm. I guess I could redesign everything to account for that, but I feel like I'd be compromising too much of the original concept.
Re: 6877 Vector Detector [message #41778 is a reply to message #41657 ] Thu, 12 January 2012 16:19 UTC Go to previous message
avatar Kaczor  is currently offline Kaczor
Messages: 35
Registered: December 2011
Go to my shop
Ha! I had this set as a kid Very Happy

Previous Topic:G2P-005 Chromehead is complete!
Next Topic:Why are ther two kind of sides



We're sorry to inform you that we no longer support this browser and can't confirm that everything will work as expected. For the best Shapeways experience, please use one of the following browsers:

Click anywhere outside this window to continue.