It`s a big sailing ship, and it now on display in my ever more completed Lord of the Rings / The Hobbit collection. Only 5 boxed sets and 2 exclusives to go, and I`m all there :-)
The ship is one of the few still available, and when the local toy store `t Bazarke had a pre Saint Nicolas sale, with all Lego at -20%, I went in and swooped the ship away.
Though in the movie it plays only a minor part, delivering the Army of the Dead to the Pelennor Fields and completely breaking the Siege of Gondor, this was the flagship set of the final Lord of the Rings range (not counting the exclusive Orthanc tower), and a big box.
Opening the box, we get 2 intruction booklets, the decal sheet, the sails, 6 bags of parts and all the hull pieces.
The first set of minifigures we get are Gimli and Legolas, together with two of the Orcs warriors that await at the docks when they think it are the Pirates of Umbar sailing in... and will be in for a big suprise.
The first build we will be making is the catapult for these Orcs. Set up around a frame, the catapult arm is connected to this and makes for the traditional play feature of the arm to toss away the 1x1 tubes.
Add the necessary pointy bits to make it more evilish looking, and the machine is ready for war.
We can then start the actual build of the ship, the first main focus (and the part that makes it look longer then traditional pirate sailing ships) is the long ram at the front.
The hull is then expanded upon by connecting more hull pieces together, and as you can already see, it is a long sailing vessel.
The grate is then added to give the impression of the cargo hold in the center.
The rear section has the connections for the rudder later on, and is then connected to the hull. Now on average and compared to for example the Black Pearl, this ship is one hull section longer then the pirate vessels, but will be less build up in height to create it`s long and sleek looking silhouette.
Of course, no ship is complete without sailing routes.
We are now starting to reinforce the structure and start attaching the side details.
The front section is then build up and the anchor device is attached. This actually works, as by turning the handle, the chains reel in the anchors at both sides at once.
More is build up on the sides, and then we can move to the back section, by adding another inhabitant of the ship.
The hind body contains the cell to keep any enslaved prisoners, and is then constructed.
In the mean time, spiky bits are added to the sides of the ship for even more menace looking...
Returning to the back, we include the staircases that will lead to the steering section of the vessel.
The upturned shields really add to the atmosphere of the boat.
The next minifig is rather odd, a pirate of Umbar with a chain (to connect him inside the cell)... and a piece of bread???
More detailing like the tail fins and the weapons rack are then installed on the hull.
While our pirate friend goes to his new residence
The steering wheel also contains the smallest of the three masts for the ship.
The final set of figures are pure winners: Aragorn, and then three Army of the Dead minifigs, including the King. These are so lovely, and they are one of the figures I`m looking around for on BL and the likes to have some more in the collection for future MOC`s.
The front `mast` is added, where the sail will be attached to.
As the big pillars are erected on the vessel, and the sails are raised.
The last thing we have to do is add the rudder, and the vessel is ready to sail the seas
And leaves us with a nice heap of parts to boot...
Even though it lacks the display majesticy of the more traditional LEGO sailing ships (or any sailing ship, those tend to draw the looks of awe of anyone entering your place), she is a fine vessel to have on the shelf, though for my own personal plan of building display MOC plates for every set (or combination there off) she is perhaps the hardest from the range, as there isn`t anything other Pelennor related out there...