Sunday, 6 September 2020

Airfix 1/144 scale Apollo Saturn V rocket

As a continuation to the lunar module model completed last January - and thanks to the encouraging comments in my last blog post - I have now pushed forward and finished its launch vehicle in 1/144 scale : the mighty Saturn V.  By now those who take the trouble to read my blog will know that I have a penchant for space models and the Apollo Saturn V is one of those kits which I have wanted to build since childhood but never really found the time (and courage) to build. And as a kid I never had enough pocket money anyway! Some years back I was lucky enough to visit Kennedy Space Center in Florida where there is a specimen of this now-defunct rocket suspended from the ceiling of a massive hangar -  I mean the sheer size of it beggars belief!

The kit is from Airfix and apart from some modifications to the colour scheme as suggested by the manufacturer, I have built it straight from the box. At 79cm tall it is not a small model and luckily I have just installed a new showcase in my man cave which can easily accomodate it. The next step is now to build the launch tower which is another large project and which will make the whole assembly go even higher.  Following that I plan to build the crawler vehicle which was used to transport the rocket and tower from the Vertical Assembly Building to the launch pad.  This will push the assembly higher still and once the three units are complete they should easily surpass the one meter mark. Eventually the plan is to mount the three components on a base to give it a small diorama feel, but that is a long way away.............


The finished model

Upper stage and service module detail

Second stage detail

First stage detail

Top-down shot showing alternating black and white patterns - a true masking headache!

Scale comparison to an old ipod. Note the three astronauts in 1/144 scale at the base on lower left. The sheer size of this vehicle in real life is overwhelming!

Lunar module sitting on top of the upper stage.  This little model is unfortunately entirely enclosed and is lost from sight once the rocket is assembled.

The sheets making up the paper model of the assembly tower - a mass of levels and girders. The crawler transport model is still in the mail.

What the assembled models should finally look like - an ambitious project that will take a loooooong time to finish!