by Jeff Skagen
Lylek's Barb is a modified KSE-12a Dagger flown by Mal Mora, a Gran who is part of a small pirate fleet. Mal Mora has modified Lylek's Barb with the addition of a top mounted swivel turret and a large ion cannon on the front, as well as a secondary power reactor to help feed the ion cannon's voracious energy appetite. The ion cannon is used to disable small transports for boarding by other pirate craft, while Lylek's Barb stays on lookout. Unfortunately, a recent attack went wrong when patrol craft responded faster expected. Lylek's Barb escaped, but with engine damage. Without any profits from the botched raid, Mal Mora was forced to jury rig repairs to the port engine. They work, but the bypasses keep him from replacing some of the armored cowling that goes on the top of the engine, creating a significant chink in his fighter's defenses.
This was an original Zarkus Model Kits release of this kit. I modified it by adding a secondary power reactor behind the primary generator, as well as adding a kitbashed ion cannon to the front and a small twin-cannon turret to the top. I added raised panels of sheet styrene in places and attached assorted greeblies in places that looked a touch bare. The left engine cover was left off, and the interior detailed and modified with more greeblies and pipes to suggest an engine that had makeshift repairs done to it that no longer allow the cover plate to be replaced.
When it came time to paint, I decided to have some fun and make this an exercise in heavy wear and tear. The craft was primed, and then paint chipping simulated by "wet salt" masking before the primary hull color was put down. The process was then repeated for the accent color. Additional light sanding made the paint look both worn as well as chipped.