My custom Y-wing fighter, with several recent modifications.
About this creation
Here is my custom Y-wing fighter. Like many of my Star Wars LEGO customs, it is based on an old design, in this case from 1983. It has undergone many changes, though it's overall shape and proportions have stayed virtually the same. The latest round of changes include the new white 6x6 domes from the Orient Expedition Palace set, eight new monorail pieces to better complete the engine pods, revised top and front laser cannons, and more asymetrical details on the body of the ship. These changes can be contrasted with the previous version in the pics towards the bottom of this page (the cockpit closeups are also there). The goal, as always, is to better match the 'real' ship, as seen in the films. I'm pretty pleased with the improvements from the new modifications, but I'm never REALLY happy, so I'm sure there will always be more tinkering!
Side/rear view, highlighting the new monorail tracks which continuew the long rails which hold the thrust vectrals up to their proper place, starting just behind the domes (compare to pics of earlier version at bottom of this page to see the awkward space created without the new pieces)
Front/side angle, showing the new 6x6 domes. From the moment I saw them on the Orient Expedition Palace set, I KNEW that I needed them to better realize the front of the Y-wing's engine pods, and I'm pretty happy with the results. Again, see earlier version below for my previous take using wegde bricks and slopes.
Coming right at you. The front and top laser cannons have been changed, with the antennae reversed so that the tip is shown, rather than the base (I loved the "classic space" look of the old way, but this far better matches the "real" Y-wing). For the top gun, I reworked it entirely, using the new 4L bars.
Rear/side view showing my, well...involved take on the thrust vectrals! Long after this was done, I saw Brucey-wan's very cool version using grey battle droid arms - what a unique solution! For now, I'll stick with this, though.
A forward closeup of the above mentioned new details. I'm still not entirely satisfied (never am...), and may deconstruct the body and side "arms" further so that the detailing can be embedded deeper into the structure rather than just thrown on top.
...and without flash. I'm not sure about the steering wheel, though it's a neat throwback to when ILM used to kitbash real model kits, including many car and car engine parts, to detail the original Star Wars models!
Side view of astromech area. I always remove the legs of my R2 units when in my ships, as the bulikness of their legs (and especially the oversized feet) would require more sacrifice of structural accuracy than I'm willing to allow.
Other side, highlighting the 4L bars I used to simulate the tubing on the ILM models. From my original version in 1983 right up to the previous version to this one, this area was simply a "sandwich" of plates, with a few tiles thrown on top. I completely disassembled it, then started again, leaving some gaps in the sides for detail, and stopping several plates short of the top, so that the detailing could be more "in" the structure than on it.
Detail shot of the new engine domes and monorail tracks. While they do cover up the 45 degree slopes and make the engine pods look a bit more "blocky," I believe the overall effect is far superior to the previous version, which looked way to skimpy (see below).
The other cool thing about the 6x6 domes is that they hinge, allowing an accessible interior with sensor equipment! While the incredible cross sections book shows the "official" version of these structures, I thought they looked a bit boring (and admittedly difficult to render in LEGO), so I took some artistic license and made something up. I tried several things, and while I'm not totally happy with this side,...
New detailing on the front of the "arm" structure. Previously, I had nothing here but top and bottom plates with the bricks between recessed back one stud...not really accurate, but I guess I liked the way it looked.
Other side, with slightly different detail. I'm still not entirely happy with this solution, and might end up deconstructing the whole section and rebuilding it lower (as I did with the "neck" area) to change the front and also make the detailing embedded deeper in the structure.
HERE's the previous version. Note the wedge/slope assembly where the domes now sit, as well as the above mentioned recessed area on the front of the "arms". Also note the lack of detailing on the "neck" area in front of the R2 unit.
Here's a side view showing why I felt I needed to add four more monorail track to each engine pod. While you could see the 45 degree slopes, which helped the illusion of roundness, the front parts of the engines clearly look too skinny and barren. The Y-wing's engines are HUGE, and need the added monorail pieces to bulk up the apparent diameter. Besides, the structures which hold the thrust vectral assembly start right behind the domes, not just before the nacells, as this version showed.
Here's the opened canopy . I still wish I could figure out a way to make only the middle section open (and sideways, like in the films) without losing the windows on one side to make room for the hinges, or making it just look too crappy or inaccurate.
A closeup of the previous version's body detailing. The only feature I miss is the grey lance in the top left corner (as well as the antenna not fully vivible on the other side) with it's handle extending INTO the engine pod structure. This detail had to be ommited since the new monorail tracks block this area on both sides.
Here's a shot of the ship in it's spot on my table o' LEGO. These old workhorses need constant maintenance, and luckily my minifig corps are happy to do the job (the poor guy on top of the ship has been welding the same part for years)! Also visible are my rarely seen custom A-wing as well as some of my MOC hot-rodded larger speeder bikes.
Thanks to those who've commented on this. I wanted to remind everyone that this version is pretty outdated. I streamlined the cockpit and added more details (plus alternate color schemes). You can see them here:
wow you made a lot of changes but isnt the neck of the ship supposed to be longer? and NO ONE besides me EVER made the canopy open like it should!!!! sideways. yea check out my Y-wing if you get a chance... it is i believe the FIRST EVER to have that.
This is the best Y-Wing I've ever seen! I've been wanting to make the right size Y-Wing lately, and I noticed the engines are wider than an astromech droid. I searched bricklink.com for 6 x 6 pieces, and you just answered it! Two white 6 x 6 bowls, brilliant!! I'll have to start building (and buying) ASAP, thanks again!!! :)
I absolutely love the 6x6 domes! What an ingenious idea! You said you're not quite finished yet, and I think when you do you should add some roundness to the bodies of the engines, but other than that it's exceptional. You've outdone yourself Brian.