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The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

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The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theJudeAbides » Mon Jul 19, 2010 8:19 am

It is with much pride that I announce to you The Great Star Wars LDRAW project. Over the last couple of years, I've been working on this off and on, creating different models and learning how to use MLCAD. I've now gotten to the point where I feel confident in my skills and feel there isn't too much I can't do, so long as the parts are available.

As such, I have begun the project, the goal of which is to recreate every LEGO-produced Star Wars ship and vehicle ever produced in the LDRAW format. Not only that, but it is my pleasure to share these files, as well as the renderings I have made with them, with you. At this point, I've only made a small portion of the ships, but I will continue to create new ships and update here when this occurs.

Now, one of the things that has been important to me in creating these LDRAW files is that I not just build them helter-skelter, but to adhere to certain standards and conventions. This applies to how the how the ship is built, the names used for multi-part models (which are all but the smallest of models), as well as many other aspects. I invite you to take a look at any file to see what I mean.

Now, because this is LDRAW, there are certain limitations. For one, not all parts are necessarily available. I DO use unofficial parts where I can, but there are some parts (such as the windscreen used for the Jedi Interceptor) which don't even have an unofficial part. I cases like this, I'm forced to wait until the part becomes available before building any model that uses them. In other cases, such as patterned parts, I either substitute another part which is close or simply use a plain, unpatterned version of it.

What follows is a list of all models I have currently made. Please click on thumbnails to see better, higher-resolution images (1280x960).

1999
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2000
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2001
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2002
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2003
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2004
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2005
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2006
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2007
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2008
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More to come...
Last edited by theJudeAbides on Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:14 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby kyphur » Mon Jul 19, 2010 11:46 am

Where do I sign-up to help with this project?

I have so many of these already completed...
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby Draykov » Mon Jul 19, 2010 1:59 pm

Nice work, Jude. Thanks for sharing!
Hail Space!
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theJudeAbides » Wed Jul 21, 2010 4:14 pm

A quick update. As you may have noticed, some of thumbs are now smaller than they used to be. I intend to make them all that size eventually, but these things take time and I'd like to keep some of the folders available until then. Mainly just some smaller models in this update. I've got some bigger ones in the works, but they're not done yet.

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The beauty of a LEGO MOC is not the elements that go into it, but the way those elements are put together.
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby fallenangel327 » Thu Jul 22, 2010 2:30 pm

Wait, so other users CAN'T contribute to this project? (I have an MLCAD model of the 7134 A-wing on my computer...)

In that case, shouldn't this thread be moved to the MOCs section?
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby Master Fetty » Thu Jul 22, 2010 2:57 pm

But its not Jude's own creations, is it?
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theJudeAbides » Thu Jul 22, 2010 4:04 pm

kyphur wrote:Where do I sign-up to help with this project?

fallenangel327 wrote:Wait, so other users CAN'T contribute to this project? (I have an MLCAD model of the 7134 A-wing on my computer...)


While it is nice to see others interested in joining in, I've been hesitant about just opening it up willy-nilly. You see, I hold myself to some fairly stringent guidelines when building these things (I'd even go so far as to say I'm anal about it). While it's one thing to enforce these sort of rules on oneself, it's an entirely different thing to subject others to it. I touched upon this briefly in the initial writeup but didn't go into further detail because A. There's a fair amount of rules and B. I didn't think anybody would necessarily care.

Some examples of the rules/guidelines I set for myself:
  1. Never use "groupings." They are sloppy and difficult to work with. Use multi-part instead. It is much cleaner looking and better organized.
  2. With regard to multi-parts, a rigid naming system is maintained. A subpart of A called B would be A_B. Thus, the only time and underscore "_" should be used in a name is when you are making a subpart of another part. Additionally, a subpart of B called C should reference all the way back to the original part, and as such would be named "A_B_C." Thus, in this manner, you can nest as far as is necessary, although if it goes more than 5 deep, you should perhaps consider a better method. Also, names like "A" and "B" are not allowed. All names should be as descriptive as possible, such as "Cockpit", "Right-Wing" (notice a "-" and not "_" is used for names with multiple words), and "Chassis" are all suitable names.
  3. Hinged multi-parts have an additional requirement: the origin of the multi-part (0,0,0) should be focused on the EXACT hinge point of that part. This often makes it more difficult to build, but will make it A LOT easier when it comes time to actually hinge the part. Even if the part isn't necessarily meant to hinge in a real-life "play" situation (e.g. the part is permanently kept in some hinged position), this still needs to be maintained.
  4. The "main" model should not be built in (unless no multi-parting is required (which only applies to smaller, simpler models)). Instead, use a part called "Body", "Chassis" or something similar. Then, place that multi-part in the main model. Additionally, the only other multi-parts allowed in the main model are parts that hinge off of the main body (such as canopies, wings, etc...) The SOLE exception to this is for canopy parts that hinge themselves (such as the X-Wing canopy) since this is a play feature.

There are a few other rules as well, but this should give you an idea of what I'm talking about. IF you are willing to adhere to these standards (among others), you're welcome to join the project. If you don't, I understand. I realize that some of these rules are subjective and are based off of my own opinions of what "quality" means. Still, they're important to me and what I want this project to be about.
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theJudeAbides » Sat Jul 24, 2010 11:22 am

Oh, I thought you might enjoy BOTH UCS TIEs:

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The beauty of a LEGO MOC is not the elements that go into it, but the way those elements are put together.
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theJudeAbides » Sat Jul 31, 2010 1:11 am

A very 2008-ey update for yall:

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A wild UCS General Grievous appeared! theJude used LDraw (as well as MLCad, L3P, and pov-ray):
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ITS SUPER-EFFECTIVE!!! OK, not really. The UCS General Grievous was an incredibly challenging build that took me to the very edge of my skills and then some. While it isn't that difficult to build in real-life, the same doesn't hold for virtual LEGO. Basically, it comes down to all the variously angled pieces, very few of which fit into the convenient 15/45/90 system used by MLCad. Heck, most of them weren't even divisible by 5 (easily). And don't even get me started on the LSynth'd hoses which attach to different multi-parts. And oh, did I mention the angles? Yeah, seriously, I cannot understate the difficulty they caused. Most people rarely think about these things when building in real life, but it is a very real issue when building in LDRAW.

All in all, though, I appreciated the challenge and came through proud of everything I achieved. It's yet another necessary step towards someday doing the UCS MF, which will undoubtedly be one of the last sets I do.
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The beauty of a LEGO MOC is not the elements that go into it, but the way those elements are put together.
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theDude » Mon Aug 02, 2010 9:55 pm

I have a whole bunch of them in my Brickshelf account.

http://www.brickshelf.com/cgi-bin/gallery.cgi?f=187692

Then I also have the sets in complete forms that I've been working on. I just uploaded a lot of them, so they might not be up yet.

http://www.brickshelf.com/cgi-bin/gallery.cgi?f=330631

edit:
I too am pretty strict about how I build things, see for yourself. My UCS Falcon is pretty spot on rotationally.
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theJudeAbides » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:28 am

theDude,

Your collection is pretty impressive from what I've seen. Assuming your non-moderated folders contain just as many as your moderated ones (2000 & 2001), you've finished quite a few. However, I did look at a few of your models and was aghast to learn you don't use multi-part at all. This boggles my mind, as I cannot imagine building some of those larger models without it. How do you get things to line up? How do you rotate wings and other parts? I find it shocking that you don't even using groupings, which are better than nothing, but still (IMO) inferior to multipart.

I know there are a few other builders out there as well, but I'm not sure if they're around here. There's a guy who goes by "Koyan" who has A LOT of models as well, although they're not just Star Wars, but from all over the place. His renderings easily put mine to shame (although I've been figuring out some things that give slight improvements mine). His stuff is definately worth checking out if you got time (he's on Brickshelf as well).

Oh, and nice nick. ;)
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theDude » Tue Aug 03, 2010 5:06 pm

Wow, 8 PM and they're still not moderated yet. I build things the hard way... meaning when I have a section that I know needs to be rotated, I build it all in one color. One that's not used in the model like bright green or pink or whatever. That makes it easy to see everything, then I go back and color it properly later. It takes a bit of time, but I like doing it that way. To rotate, I put a same colored lightsaber bar in the hinge pivot, grab that, then hit the select same color button and rotate to my hearts content.

I have a bunch of the big sets in various stages of completion like the new Gunship and Home One. Ldraw is missing some pieces though that I've been waiting on like the guns on the Droid Gunship, Rep Gunship, AT-TE, etc, so a lot of sets are waiting for pieces to be authored, and my authoring experience is limited to one piece. Where'd you get the 10x10 disc for the Hailfire droid? Maybe it's been done and I haven't checked yet?

You're renderings look fine to me. I haven't a clue how to do those. You've also got a lot of the sets that I haven't done yet done which is cool. I've not been doing a ton of work on them lately.

I'm the Dude, so that's what you call me.... you can be the Jude though, I don't mind.

As for me, I'm off to CT for 3 days.... maybe my folder will be public by then.
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby Iare Tosevite » Tue Aug 03, 2010 7:14 pm

Btw if you want to take those into more popular modeler/renders like 3d studio max, use ldrdat2dxf or obj. If using ldrdat2dxf choose one of those scales, or it'll be model of zero size. It's a bug I can't fix due to lost source code, I have yet to release new version...
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Where, where, where is correct way out?
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theJudeAbides » Wed Aug 04, 2010 12:44 pm

theDude wrote:I build things the hard way... meaning when I have a section that I know needs to be rotated, I build it all in one color. One that's not used in the model like bright green or pink or whatever. That makes it easy to see everything, then I go back and color it properly later. It takes a bit of time, but I like doing it that way. To rotate, I put a same colored lightsaber bar in the hinge pivot, grab that, then hit the select same color button and rotate to my hearts content.

Wow, is there any specific reason you subject yourself to this kind of pain? I think I would go insane trying to do that. Have you ever tried using Multi-part? It really is easy to pick up, especially if you already know how to build stuff. I'm not sure which editor you use, but personally, I use MLCad which provides an excellent menu with lots of easy-to-use options for multi-part that I simply love.

theDude wrote:I have a bunch of the big sets in various stages of completion like the new Gunship and Home One. Ldraw is missing some pieces though that I've been waiting on like the guns on the Droid Gunship, Rep Gunship, AT-TE, etc, so a lot of sets are waiting for pieces to be authored, and my authoring experience is limited to one piece. Where'd you get the 10x10 disc for the Hailfire droid? Maybe it's been done and I haven't checked yet?

I know exactly which part you're talking about, as it's the reason my previous update didn't include a number of sets. I actually got a good portion of 6211 done before realizing it uses the piece for it's engines and thus had to halt contruction. What's annoying is that there isn't even an unofficial part for it. There's also this part which does have an unofficial version, but it's not really to the point I feel confident using it. As for the 10x10 Dish, to my knowledge, it only recently became available as an unofficial part. I had searched for it in the past but been unable to find it, and only was able to get it recently.

This is one of my largest annoyances with the LDRAW parts authors. All they seem to want to focus on is old, outdated parts nobody except them cares about. Some obscure part used in exactly one set back in 1974? Better get that coded up as soon a friggen possible!!!1! Some part that's currently being produced by LEGO and has been used in dozens of sets? Pfft, who cares about that crap?!?! One only needs to look at the last parts update (which actually was one of the better updates for newer parts) to see this in action. The biggest portions of this update? A bunch of Fabuland figures and literally dozens of discontinued flags and roadsigns. Meanwhile, when it comes to Star Wars helmets, the only one that's ever been done is Vader's helmet. That means all Stormtrooper Helmets, Clone Trooper Helmets, Rebel Helmets, and most other headgear are completely unavailable. But some stupid Mouse Head thing? That bantha poodoo is TOP priority!!!

theDude wrote:You're renderings look fine to me. I haven't a clue how to do those. You've also got a lot of the sets that I haven't done yet done which is cool. I've not been doing a ton of work on them lately.

I agree. My renderings are "fine." Nothing more, nothing less. However, if you look at the renderings of people like Koyan, you'll see a pretty stark difference. His renderings are downright gorgeous and are what I someday hope to be able to obtain. You probably haven't noticed, but I have made a few small gains so far, but that aren't that noticeable. I've been trying different things. Some things help, some things hurt, while others do nothing. It's a learning process, and it's going slow. I've recently been trying to get radiosity lighting to work, but my only "success" with it involved a rendering that took well over twice as long to render than without, with results that weren't much better, if at all.

theDude wrote:I'm the Dude, so that's what you call me.... you can be the Jude though, I don't mind.

I assumed your nickname was based of the character from the The Big Lebowski, as mine is, but perhaps I assumed incorrectly? Also, my real name is Jude (which rhymes with Dude. A.K.A. the same pronunciation as that used in the song "Hey Jude" by the Beatles.) So yes, I can be the Jude, because I am the Jude. XD
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theDude » Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:59 pm

theJudeAbides wrote:Wow, is there any specific reason you subject yourself to this kind of pain? I think I would go insane trying to do that. Have you ever tried using Multi-part? It really is easy to pick up, especially if you already know how to build stuff. I'm not sure which editor you use, but personally, I use MLCad which provides an excellent menu with lots of easy-to-use options for multi-part that I simply love.


I haven't tried multipart out, I too use MLCad and know of the feature. I just assumed ages ago that when I downloaded other peoples models and couldn't "take them apart", that they had used that feature, so I swore against it. Maybe I swore wrong.

theJudeAbides wrote:This is one of my largest annoyances with the LDRAW parts authors. All they seem to want to focus on is old, outdated parts nobody except them cares about. Some obscure part used in exactly one set back in 1974? Better get that coded up as soon a friggen possible!!!1! Some part that's currently being produced by LEGO and has been used in dozens of sets? Pfft, who cares about that crap?!?! One only needs to look at the last parts update (which actually was one of the better updates for newer parts) to see this in action. The biggest portions of this update? A bunch of Fabuland figures and literally dozens of discontinued flags and roadsigns. Meanwhile, when it comes to Star Wars helmets, the only one that's ever been done is Vader's helmet. That means all Stormtrooper Helmets, Clone Trooper Helmets, Rebel Helmets, and most other headgear are completely unavailable. But some stupid Mouse Head thing? That bantha poodoo is TOP priority!!!


I agree with you on the old parts taking priority, but I'll say this.... authoring is hard. I authored the new castle wall (60808) that was in the January update, which after getting used to it, wasn't that difficult. But I tried to author the new pirate boat pieces and gave up in frustration, and I'm pretty sure helmets would not be any easier. There's a lot of rules to follow to make things correctly. Even a simple thing like that wall had to be resubmitted about 4-5 times fixing errors.

theDude wrote:I'm the Dude, so that's what you call me.... you can be the Jude though, I don't mind.


Yes, my nick is based off that movie.... that's a line from the movie when he's talking to the Big Lebowski about the rug.... granted I had to add the next line... and it's what made you posting about this topic all the more "weird coincidence" to me.
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Re: The Great Star Wars LDRAW Project

Postby theJudeAbides » Fri Aug 06, 2010 3:58 pm

WE'RE GOING STREAKING!!!*

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*For those of you who don't get the reference/don't see the connection: This is a quote from the movie "Old School" (a classic). Most of the models are from 1999-2001, which makes them decidedly "Old School" (at least in terms of Star Wars models). And that, my friends, is called correlation without causation. XD
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