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Kit Name: Darth Vader's TIE Fighter
Scale: 1/51
Material: Resin & Plastic
Manufacturer: Estes

Model Number:

Number Of Parts: 3 usable pieces
Final Dimensions: 5.5"W x 5"L x 3.25"H
Box Cover: None
Instructions: None
Country of Origin: USA
Special Note: Modified Estes Rocket Kit.

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I got this piece from a good friend. He found it on eBay and passed it off to me. Someone took an old Estes Darth Vader TIE Fighter and started to modify it. They then made a casting of it and stopped. I got both luckily! Not much had been done so I was basically starting from scratch converting the Estes Vader TIE into a passable static display model. This can be seen in the first picture. I started off by marking out and scribing all of the areas that would need panel lines. This was done all over the cockpit ball, the wing struts and some on the rear body. I then either scratchbuilt or kitbashed all the necessary tiny details on the ship. This included all the little dots and greeblies on the cockpit ball, wing supports, wings, and rear body. This process can be seen approximately 75% done in the second and third pictures. After this was complete I moved on to cleaning up any unnecessary or inaccurate details and imperfections. When all of the accurizing and detailing was finished, I worked on the cockpit interior. This was pretty much all kitbashed from an AMT/ERTL Imperial TIE Fighters 2 pack. The cockpit from, top hatch, pilot, and interior were all used. The interior parts had to be heavily modified to fit inside the cockpit hollow I carved out of the solid resin. I also modified the pilot figure to look more like Vader. You can't really see this in the pictures, however. After al this was done I masked off the cockpit openings and moved on to painting. I based the ship in Camouflage Gray. This is a little too light for Vader's TIE, but I was planning on some weathering to help darken it up. After the base coat was down, I picked out the few discolored parts with Neutral Gray and began to weather the ship with a series of black washes. This darkened up the ship color nicely. I have some matching regular TIEs planned so the color will work well with them. After weathering, I masked off the solar panels and painted them Flat Black. I then glued everything together and put it up on the shelf along with all of the other in-scale TIEs I have. I had a lot of fun converting this piece and I am very grateful to my good friend, Joe, for sending me this. If you want a Darth Vader TIE Advanced x1 TIE Fighter in scale with the AMT/ERTL or SMT TIEs, pick yourself up an Estes rocket kit and get building.

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