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N-1 Graveyard

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by Brad Guy

Scale: 1/48

In the years following the battle of Naboo, the defense forces of that planet decided to retire the venerable N-1 starfighter. The old fighters had served admirably, but were under powered and under armed to contend with the increasing threat the Trade Federation posed. As newer, more powerful fighters were cycled into the Naboo inventory, the older N-1's were auctioned off. This is the story of two of them.

One of them was purchased by Din Arnettis who took it on the racing circuit. Arnettis left the original paint scheme of yellow over chrome, but added black hornet stripes across the upper fuselage. He also rebuilt the engines to produce 1/3 more thrust. The peak of Din's racing career came when he received an 'also ran' mention in the Kessel Run. However, at time wore on, the overpowered engines, which were prone to overheating, wore out. Din eventually dropped out of racing altogether and sold his old N-1 to a used parts dealer named Wesp Sett.

Other N-1's were used by the now famous Rogue Squadron, prior to the battle of Yavin, as pilot training ships. The old fighters were painted in traditional Rogue livery, and prospective rebel pilots would learn flying, targeting, and squadron tactics in them before graduating to the Z-95 Headhunter. One of these, Red Trainer Three, was struck from behind during an exercise and the repulsor lift and rear finial were destroyed. The wrecked ship eventually found itself traded for badly needed parts to the same scrap dealer, Wesp Sett, who now owned Din Arnettis's old racer.

A couple years after the formation of the New Republic, 14 year old Yaxa Prinn was in the market for her first speeder. She saved all summer, but still couldn't afford much. Fortunately an old man in her neighborhood, Wesp Sett, had something in her price range. Buy one, get one free, in fact! Yaxa carted the two old fighters home with the intent of building a single, usable speeder out of them. The weapons were long gone, so she replaced them with drilled out broom handles, they looked cool!

She got the repulsor lift from Arnettis's old ship working again, and even got the Red Three's engines to sputter to life once. She thinks. But the project was more trouble than it was worth, and it wound up sitting in her parent's garage, rusting and neglected. A couple years later Yaxa got pregnant, and real life took over. Her old speeder was the last thing on her mind. Eventually her dad carted the two mashed, rusted, and forlorn fighters back to Wesp Sett's shop, (now Wesp and Sons), where it sits in the back of the scrap yard to this day.

The Model

As you can see, this is the AMT/Ertl Naboo N-1 starfighter. It is built mostly from the box, but I added a few details to the sparse cockpit, and some aluminum tube for the guns. Since it made no sense to have an R2 unit sitting in it, I cut open the bottom hatch and filled the R2 socket full of greeblies. The chrome parts were soaked in oven cleaner, and all the nasty seams were filled with Aves. The whole thing was repainted as though it were new, bright yellow on top and Alclad chrome on the bottom. Then I gave it about 30 years worth of 'history' with the airbrush, adding layer upon layer of paint, masking with salt the whole way. Various washes and filters were applied, until I finally got tired of it and called it done.

The base is a 1/4" piece of drywall glued to a nice block of maple. Expansion joints were scribed in, and I painted it to look like concrete, experimenting with various tricks until I thought it looked right. There is a little Woodland Scenics grass poking up through the cracks, and a handful of metal and plastic greeblies scattered about. The base was splattered with oil paint to give it the final touch, and the project was finished. I hope you like it.

Image: Top view

Image: Cockpit

Image: Right/front

Image: Instrument cluster

Image: Other side

Image: Underneath

Image: Droid socket

Image: You could poke someone's eye out ....

Image: Head on

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This page was last updated 16 November 2007. © 2007 Starship Modeler