Free Model Review: Serenity

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by sakrison, Apr 19, 2008.

  1. sakrison

    sakrison Member

    I just completed the Firefly-Class transport "Serenity." The kit is designed by Chihuahua de Papel (Chihuahua de Papel) and modified by Laz (Serenity Paper Model).

    Chihuahua de Papel made an impressive start. Laz improved (in my opinion) the coloring and some of the details. Laz' version does, however, omit some of the instruction sheets; you'll need to go to Chihuahua de Papel for those. The instruction drawings were pretty good, leaving only a few steps to be puzzled out.

    In general, the kit went together fairly well. The biggest fit problem was the gravity rotor housing--the half-ring that fits around the top and sides of the main field generator. The ring itself went together alright but the cross-beams that go underneath the main engine don't fit well and the spacer blocks that attach the ring to the field generator housing are too big. I added strips to the crossbars and scaled down the spacer blocks by about 30% using L.A.R. calculations ("Looks About Right").

    Other modifications I made:
    I added clear glazing and a windshield frame over the printed windshield.
    I built one shuttlecraft in flight, departing the docking bay (held in position by a strip of clear acetate).
    I placed the other shuttlecraft in the stowed position, trimming about 1/3 of it off the inboard side to get it to nest properly in the docking bay.
    I added spacers behind the solar panels--small sections of square tube made from spare parts.
    I made new landing legs and feet by repainting and modifying the legs and feet from a Star Wars ATPT. (a free download at Momir Farooq's homepage)

    I have a "Serenity BluePrints Reference Pack" from Qmx (blueprints). Based on those data, there are some noticeable inaccuracies in the model, but nothing really glaring. Overall, the finished model looks right and is properly proportioned. The model's large size (about 14" in length) makes it a good candidate for some additional detailing.

    This is not a paper kit for beginners but it should present no real problems to an intermediate modeler with a little ingenuity.

    The finished model, which I built as a birthday present for my college-student daughter, looks good enough to satisfy all but the pickiest "Firefly" fan.

    On a scale of 1 (poor) to 5 (outstanding), I'd rate this kit as follows:
    Subject matter: 5
    Artwork: 4.5
    Parts Fit: 2.5
    Details and accuracy: 3.5-4.0
    Instructions: 4.0
    Overall: 4.0
    Difficulty: Moderately Difficult

    Even with its fit problems, I thoroughly enjoyed this kit and I'm very pleased with the results. A huge "Gracias!!" and "Thank you!!" to Chihuahua de Papel and Laz!

    Attached Files:

  2. fr33lancer

    fr33lancer New Member

    Wow nice job man. Great detail on this ship.
  3. CJTK1701

    CJTK1701 Banned

    Wow! I used to have the "no-lines, no colors" version of that model. I'm going to have to get that one. I started on the NL version about went insane trying to figure it out. Thanks for posting this and the links. Great information and great build.

    1) Build: 4 out of five deltas.

    2) information: 4 out of five deltas.


    Note: Deltas are Starfleet Delta symbols and are my personal way of grading. 4 out of 5 is a really good rating. No one gets 5 out of 5 unless they are really AWESOME.sign1
  4. paulhbell

    paulhbell Guest

    Cool review. And nice build.

    It would be nice to see more reviews like this.
  5. SCEtoAux

    SCEtoAux Member

    Very nice looking finished model. The shuttlecraft in flight mod is purty cool, too. :thumb:
  6. jaffro

    jaffro Long term member

    I agree, this is an awesome review there should be more like it.

    Thanks for sharing it with us and congratulations on a very impressive build.
  7. Tars

    Tars Member

    That looks really great! I built that model too, I think the most difficult part was to join the neck with the middle hull. Great looking model though!

    Attached Files:

  8. sakrison

    sakrison Member

    That step was certainly fussy and one of the places where the fit is marginal.
    I just took it slowly, gluing one tab, letting it dry, good and solid, then gluing the next tab, and so on. That worked.

    No worries,
  9. 72BMWR75/5

    72BMWR75/5 Member

    Hi, Sakrison. Nice job on the model and the review.
    One thing. Can you change your link to Laz's model to a link to the site instead of a direct download link?
  10. sakrison

    sakrison Member

    Here's a photo of the original "Serenity" for comparison. As you can see, Prof. Garcia did a great job translating a very difficult subject into paper. I'm impressed.

    Attached Files:

  11. Hot4Darmat

    Hot4Darmat Member

    I also built one of these several months ago, and was really impressed by the model. My biggest challenges were getting the upper neck pieces to fit between the upper main hull, and the back of the "head". There were lots of fiddly bits, but ultimately this was a pleasure to build. Here are a few shots of my version.

    Attached Files:

  12. armorbimbo

    armorbimbo Member

    I'd like to throw out a small bit of 'horn tooting' for myself. Here is a page where someone took my vanilla version of Serenity and made it look just plain awesome. While my model doesn't have textures, it does provide another option for Firefly fans.

    Tanks & Trolls

    Sorry for the hijacking.

    As for the builds in the thread, just plain awesome. Great work guys.
  13. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    Congrats on Pic of the week by the way :)
  14. sakrison

    sakrison Member

    Good grief! Don't apologize! Your photos show the kind of detailing that will make this into a truly impressive model. You make me want to build it again, and spend about twice as much time at it. wall1 Thank you for sharing the photos. Wow!
  15. Tars

    Tars Member

    Btw did any of you make the engine pods moveable? Mine can be folded up and down, but making them rotate for vector thrust was a bit too tricky so I skipped that... this is already cute enough, with the hydraulic cylinder sliding in and out :D
  16. sakrison

    sakrison Member

    Maybe next time.
  17. Hot4Darmat

    Hot4Darmat Member

    I did the opposite of what you did, I think. I decided to skip the drooping down engine option, and went for the rotating vectored motion. I connected the two engines with a length of dowel inserted into both engines across the wingspan. If you rotate one engine into the vertical thrust position, they both turn together. It looks cool, and the person I made this model for was extremely happy with it....I came close to making them angle down for the "parked" position too, but ran out of oomph.

    I really like the action pose of the departing shuttle in your model. Looks great. Congrats on pic of the week, too.
  18. lazfromuk

    lazfromuk New Member

    Serenity page

    Hi, Sakrison asked if i could replace the Serenity model link on my site with a page. Well i have now done so, and the page can be found at: Serenity Paper Model

    It contains images from this forum of the models you guys have built, hope you don't mind, i've given each a credit :0)


  19. Hot4Darmat

    Hot4Darmat Member

  20. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    Thanks man - its a great model!

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