21 Cargolifter

Build: Summer 2002, pieces 243, steps 44+8 submodels
L/W/H: 38/29/14 studs, 30,16/22,55/10,76 cm

More claws.

Functionality: Although I thought the 20 Chickwing was actually a pretty successful attempt at building big, I wasn't satisfied with it, as it was still basically another fighter, just with an excessive brick count. Official sets at that size usually had a good bit functionality like small vehicles or robots, larger crew, and a lot of small compartments.
As these small crafts usually isn't that pretty; seldomly good enough to be sold separately, and that I knew that I didn't have that much experience with building very small crafts, I had to look elsewhere for an excuse to build large.

With thin walls this kind of container is light, spacy, cheap, and easy to open: What more can one whish for?

Containers: I found the solution ready at hand, in the form of containers I'd made out of castle parts years ago, inspired by the ones from the Starwars space simulator TIE Fighter. So combining these with the CarryAlls from the RTS game Dune2 I had the concept of the Cargolifter, which necessarily would have to be a good bit larger than the cargo to be able to lift it.

The hand! Lo and behold: The hand of the creator!!! (the other things are the Cargolifter about to pick up a container)

Cargolifting: Like the CarryAlls from Dune, the Cargolifter would need to be able to pick up the cargo from the ground with a grab, and like these, I placed this centrally in the craft to get a decent balance even with heavier loads, while the rest of the craft was parted into a cockpit - and engine/wing-sections connected with a three beamed structure very similar to the one around the weapon in the Chickwing

I even managed to stuff in a hatch and a pretty spacy compartment on top of the engine section.

Details: Like with the Chickwing, this model is very much Clawstyle and of course with two laser cannons and technical wirering in black and some of my first (serious) use of rubber hoses.
The angeling is made with simple 1-2 jumpertechnique.

Even though the grab is build horizontally out round 1x1 bricks, not the most sturdy parts, it's actually pretty solid because of the antennas stuck in through the bottom part of the grab.
Unlike with the Chickwing, I had the opportunity to build the upper one vertically resulting in a far more sturdy craft.

A good big engine made out of a big technic wheel hub. Note how the tailfins is mounted on the wings, and the details below the wings.

Building technique: Like the Chickwing, the angling of the wings were made with ordinary technic pins with friction. 
But as an improvement to that the movement of the wings was restricted downwards by a shelf made out of a big plate like in #16 (and the tail of the Chickwing). This approach saves you from making a host of tiny adjustments whenever the wings is pushed out of place because you can just turn them until they're stopped by the restrictor.

Another thing worth remembering is that whenever you've invested in constructing an odd angle, you automatically get another one for free if you mount something on it at a 90º angle with brackets or SNOT technique (like the 03 Protodiamond).

I made this model very shortly after the previous one, the 20 Chickwing, but after recording that one, I was pretty tired of drawing building plans on graphpaper and the summer holiday over.
When I returned, in the one week autumn holiday, my father and I took both of them out on the terrace to photograph them on a crystal clear autumn day before disassembling the Chick to get the much needed 4x8 wing pieces as most of these was bound up in these two models.
Full of ideas, and with an undiminished desire to build, I was more interested in building than recording (most of the week), so while building the next model, the 22 Chickwing 2, I suddenly found myself in the very unpleasant situation that I needed the 8x8 wing pieces from this model:
This threw me into dire considerations, as I didn't have the time for such big projects after I'd moved away from home, and what about all the other models I desired to build? Saving this model would only hamper the thing I desired the most and delay the problem to the Christmas holiday where I would have even more models to record.
So with a sting in my heart, I butchered this model knowing that it was the best of the two models, maybe even the best ever, and without recording it first, trying to comfort myself with the fact that at least I had pictures of it unlike most of the other models.

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