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Kit Name: Ebon Hawk
Scale: 1/72
Material: Plastic
Manufacturer: Me (Scratchbuilt)

Model Number:

Released: 2006 (Finished)
Number Of Parts: A Lot
Final Dimensions: 13.5"L x 13.5"W
Box Cover: None
Instructions: None
Country of Origin: USA
Special Note: Entirely Scratchbuilt (Not a kit)

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I like to think of this as my biggest accomplishment to date. This is my 1/72 scratchbuild model of the Ebon Hawk from Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic video game series. I was approached by a customer of my Building Service to create an Ebon Hawk for him. Since no kit of this subject exists, the only option was to build it from scratch. It was a complete custom job with no kitbashing. He also requested that the ship be painted with blue markings instead of the red ones seen on the original Ebon Hawk from the game. So, after working out the size and other pertinent details, I began working. It has taken a few months, but it was all worth it. I am quite proud of this build and was very sad to see it go.

I started by gathering as much reference material as I could. I found some screenshots from the game online, and supplemented them with dozens more that I took. I also walked around the ship as much as I could in-game to get a feel for the dimensions. Once I had my reference pictures, I started working out sizes and proportions. This was done by taking the overhead shot of the ship from the in game map, and finding the ratio of width to length of the cockpit section. I then took a screenshot showing a character from the game standing directly in front of the cockpit. I used this to calculate the height of the cockpit, which also gave me the width. This then allowed me to use the previous proportions to figure out the length. Once I had this measurement, I just worked my way along the ship figuring out all the different areas and how they would size up. At 1/72 from the outside, the ship ends up being about 13 inches long. As with the Millennium Falcon, the outside doesn't exactly size up with the inside. This is forgivable for a ship that has never existed, though.

After coming up with my measurements and creating literally dozens and dozens of plans, sketches, and piles of paper with scribbles all over them, I was ready to start building. The building process was thoroughly documented and you can find plenty of pictures here. The first thing I started building was the cockpit. You can see the reference picture I used for sizing, and the cockpit placed against a 1/72 pilot. Most shapes were built the same way. I started with a styrofoam or foamcore block for support, and boxed it in with sheet styrene. I mostly used .030 styrene from For Sale signs sold at Wal-Mart. I went through a LOT of them. The cockpit was pretty easy as it was very square. The more complicated shapes were made from styrene with Apoxie Sculpt to make the curved areas. The rear deck of the ship was made by using the plastic cover from a large clock (also found at Wal-Mart), and cutting it in half. The two halves were joined together, sections were cut out, and then covered in styrene. Again, there are plenty of pictures on the progress page to help you visualize this. I basically just worked my way around the ship building all the different sections using my measurements and changing them a bit as I went along to fit better and be more accurate.

Once the basic shapes were built, I started to detail them. I used varying size strips of Evergreen and Plastruct stock. I used strips, rods, tubes, t-rod, channels, and more. I also used a lot of small detail pieces from my spare parts bin for extra detailing. Things like landing gear struts, hydraulic lines, guitar wire, windshield wipers and more. The most difficult part of this process was interpreting the in-game model into a real world model. The in-game model has no real surface detail. It is a smooth model with a flat image stretched over it that is painted to look like real detail. I basically had to look over every square inch of the ship and decide what should be a raised detail, what should be enscribed detail and what was weathering or paint variations. It was the most difficult and labor intensive part of the process.

After detailing the ship, she was ready to be painted. I started by base coating the entire ship in Polly Scale Engine Black. Then, I gave the Ebon Hawk a light coat of Polly Scale Reefer White. I masked off some areas of the ship and did another light coat of White. I repeated this process a couple times and after unmasking and one last overall dusting, it makes for a lot of different colored panels. I also used a light dusting of Polly Scale Bar Gray, SP Lettering Gray and Concrete for other areas of the ship. I then masked off the ships colored markings and went to work. One of the special things requested by the customer was that the Ebon Hawk be painted with blue markings instead of the red ones seen in the game. I used Polly Scale Avon Blue for main color and mixed some of the Bar Gray into it for the different color blue panels.

It's very important to let your paint dry fully to avoid ruining it. One of the nice things about Polly Scale paint is that it dries very quickly. I was able to start weathering once it dried and cured. I started by distressing the paint. This was done with some 000 steel wool and rubbing areas that would see the most wear. One thing to remember when weathering is that too much can look bad. You have to find the right balance. The steel wool was used to wear down some of the paint and let some of the black basecoat start to show through. After this, I gave this ship some washes of diluted Engine Black in important areas. It was also used to create streaks and oil stains. This same process was repeated with a few different dirty colors like Rust, Grays and even White to simulate the fading of the blue and other colors. White helps everything blend together and not look like it was weathered rapidly.

Weathering was the last step and once it was done, it was ready to be shipped off. A nice, simple stand was created with some clear rods for support and that was that. I was very sad to see it go, but I do plan to build one for myself someday. If you would like an Ebon Hawk built for yourself (in any color), please see my Building Service page and feel free to Contact Me.

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