USS JALAPI . The USS JALAPI (I know that is misspelled but I already put the name plate stickers on it) is a Battle Carrier (Aircraft Carrier with retractable battle ship guns) built for the upcoming YouTube series Pilots of the Caribbean that some friends and I are making (It’s going to be another year or two, we haven’t even started the stop motion yet, still got lots of stuff to build). She is to be the ship that’s home to all the main characters in the series, and their planes. . !Notice!
For some reason none of the links I have made seem to work so you will just have to find the stuff manuly via my home page. Sorry for the inconveniance.
The USS JALAPI was a single day build (3:00pm - 3:00am) and is about as big as my 6-8-4 steam locomotive. It wasn't exactly a single day build, the ship was built by me and my friend Callan in 12 hours but later I modified it, but that wasn't until months later.
The build process: (man, I really need to start taking pictures of this part!)
The ship was built by my friend Callan and I in two halves that were later attached together with the help of a rubber mallet. Don't remember why we built it like that but I know there was a good reason. We designed it a little less for authenticity and more for the features we crammed into it, like the opening front pop out guns and plane lift.
The ship is designed to hold 10 planes, 9 fighters and a modified, water landing B25 Mitchell that comes out the front of the ship. The ship also has an opening compartment on the flight deck to allow the Completely Over the Top, Triple Barreled, 60inch cannon to pop out. There is also a double barreled 60inch truck mounted canon that can be raised via the plane lift is a rear gun, though the truck skids halfway down the flight deck when fired. It is also equipt with 14 Flack AA Guns for Anti Air defense. Pilots of the Caribbean is going to be a comedy so the ship has a tree growing on it and a hood ordanment just to be weird. The ships number is 42, I love this number, any one who has seen or read The Hichhikers Guide to the Galixy should know why.
Callans plane Motorscourge coming up the vehicle lift (wings folded)
All planes on deck (some have since been rebuilt these are old pics, sorry)
B25 Coming out the open front with The Silver Bulet (our rockit recon plane) already in the water.
Pics of the half rebuild
This rebuild took several hours to do. The reason I call it a half rebuild is because I only rebuild half the ship. Actuly all a changed was made the front opening part one brick taller (now the B25 can fit in without having to take the tails off) and also compleatly rebuilt the front cannon design, as well as moved it back a few studs, but I had to take the intire front half of the ship to do all that.
The water landing B25 Mitchil coming out the front. As you can see it has been modified to be more athentic too.
The Hornet Fire BT III coming up the plane lift (Wings folded).
The new front cannon design, now the deck opens, the cannon comes up (you have to pretend that part, the ship is to small to fit a mechinism that actuly rases the cannon), and the deck slides back in place! I wanted the whole thing to work by turning a crank on the side of the ship, but that wasn't pasable so you have to do each step individjuly with your hands.
The suports that hold the deck in place:
The suports are removed so the deck can drop down and...
Than you place the cannon on one of the suports that are used to hold deck up when the cannons are retracted, now you...
Slide the deck back in place.
This is the truck with the rear gun on it, it is stored in the hanger and brought up Via the plane lift, it slides half way down the flight deck when fired.
The Bridge tower section, this has now been rebuilt to match the minifig scale model better. The pics of the new bridge are at the bottom of the page. I also have pics of the tower and all the interior rooms I have built so far here: http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/244119
All planes on deck! This photo is up to date with all the planes. You can veiw all the planes individuly here: http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/244029
The new bridge
This is the new bridge I made for the ship, It took over an hour and a half to build.
I have also built it Minifig scale.
The new, new bridge
I have rebuilt the bridge to better match the Minifig model. I also took photos of it on the ship.
Update: Possible redesign in the works! Maybe…
OK, so I have a labor intensive community service activity tomorrow so of coarse I am up at 1:00am worrying about the imperfection in a LEGO thing! Anyway…
The current USS JALAPI is a good ship, especially now that I have modified it a bunch, but the fact remains that is was still 12 hour build. It has some cool functions, but the ship is still really undetailed. I have also noticed that the ships scale is off, not compared to the planes but compared to an actual escort carrier, which besides the after market cannons, is what the JALAPI is. Currently the USS JALAPI is 2.5 feet long; I have calculated that to be accurate in scale to a real escort carrier it needs to be 3.1 feet long. I mainly realized this when I was thinking in my head of how the planes would be stored inside the hanger and realized that it wouldn’t have room for only the 10 planes I want to go in it.
This redesign won’t just be a mod of the carrier like my other stuff. The ship will be completely rebuilt. The planes and bridge tower section will likely be the only things left untouched. Of coarse it will still have all the stuff it had before (cannons and such), but the whole thing will be bigger and more detailed after the rebuild.
I am now nearly positive the rebuild will happen; it is just a question of when. Actually it was always a question of when, ever since I popped the "Fanta" (I’m not old enough to drink and whine tastes awful any way) can open to commission it I was 50% sure I would rebuild it some day, now the chances are just up to 95%