Building The Director
Containing 4,305 parts, The Director comes in at a part count of what you would come to expect of an official Ultimate Collector Series set. The great thing about this MOC is that parts come by quite cheap. When sourcing the parts ourselves, we ended up paying just over 11 cents per piece. The minifigs of course were more expensive to source, which is why we designed the base display to hold anywhere from 0-7 minifigures depending on what your budget is.
With very large builds, I like to sort out my parts more meticulously. I admit, it is really hard sometimes to spend extra time sorting because of how excited I get for builds, but it pays off. You may prefer one method of sorting over another such as sorting by part type rather than by color, what I do is a mixture of both. For builds in this piece count range, I always make sure to have several small containers of parts that have a footprint of 2x2 and less. These generally have the highest quantity of pieces, so to keep them from spreading all over my build area I just throw them together in small containers. Anything above this 2x2 footprint I the go ahead and sort by color.
The build starts with the assembly of a Technic frame that serves as the main junction of structural stability at the center of the model. The sorting really helped me out here as I was able to locate pieces with ease during each step. The small notes placed in the instruction manual were also very helpful in determining the exact type of piece that was needed. For example, the instructions include a note stating a 1x2 modified brick has studs on both sides. The images for this brick and a modified 1x2 brick with studs on one side are exactly the same, so this was crucial in terms of avoiding any small hiccups during the early stages of the build.
Once the main frame is constructed, the build progressed to the bottom panels of the Shuttle. These were most certainly the trickiest part of the build, just because the panels can be a bit fragile while snapping them into place, and the fit is so snug to avoid any gaps that is also requires patience to really get them aligned properly. Right after this the landing gears are popped into place, and you can rest assured that after this you will not be flipping the model over from here on out.
The top stabilizing fin is the next section to construct. This design changed several times before settling into the way it is now connected, which is via a small technic liftarm assembly that attaches the top stabilizing fin to the frame. This may feel a bit wobbly, but it ends up being perfect once the rest of the shuttle is completed.
Next up was the front panel. The front panel really makes the size of the build start to reveal itself visually, and is a fun moment once it’s snapped into the Technic frame. The front panel’s attachment was another area that went through numerous revisions until it felt perfect. Attached by one long Technic pin on each side, the front panel can be slightly adjusted later on in the build to minimize the appearance of any unwanted gaps.
With a bulk of the Shuttle’s central area built, the manual shifts over to building the wings at this stage of the build. The wings feature some grunge created by dark bluish gray bricks to give off the effect that this is not a crisp, brand-new ship. The assembly of each wing is achieved by attaching inner portions of it to the Technic frame before wrapping up with the assemblies that make up the front and back of the wings that really give them their shape. At this point in the build, if you haven’t gotten a sense of scale yet, the wings undoubtedly will hit you now. Angled parallel to your building surface, The Director’s massive wingspan is on full display, and I’ll admit it I had to reorganize my build area to get it to fit all on one surface.
Once completed with the wings, the assembly of the Shuttle is completed with the side panels. The panels also include the rear engine details, which were my favorite part of the build. There are some neat building techniques that allow the engines to take on their shape, and the result is incredibly sleek. These side panels do not snap into place with the rest of the assembly, but rather slide into place via two Technic axels on each panel corresponding to Technic connectors on the frame. The reason for this is that when building a version of the Shuttle where panels attached to hinged plates on the frame, it was impossible to achieve a good connection on the final panel without pressing so hard that another area of the shuttle broke. By removing the side panels, it also allows for easier transport of the MOC, which comes in handy especially when placing the Shuttle into its Flight-Mode display.
At this point the shuttle was completed! Take a good few moments to sit back and appreciate your new model, but there’s still more to do. Instructions for The Director include a display base that the Shuttle can be propped on in two different ways: Flight-Mode and Landed-Mode. Flight-Mode displays the model as if it were soaring through the skies with its wings folded down. Landed-Mode takes a different approach and has the model with its wings folded up. Landed-Mode is a great option if you are short on space or are concerned about your build being knocked over.
The base display was built to include details mimicking the opening sequence of Rogue One: A Star Wars™ Story where Director Krennic lands his shuttles on the outskirts of the Erso farm. Attached to the front of the display block is a smaller platform with 7 minifigures trudging through the grass. These minifigures are an optional inclusion, but we do recommend at least including Director Krennic, after all it is his ship. Alongside him are 6 of his trusty Death Troopers to complete the scene.
Following the instructions in their entirety will leave you with the Shuttle in Flight-Mode, but if you’re someone who wants the display to be in Landed-Mode, it’s an easy switch. The process that worked best for me was to first remove the side panels, which freed up some weight from the model. Then I folded the wings up, which was a bit scary the first time due to the wobble that takes place, but there’s nothing to worry about. I made sure to keep one hand holding the tower steady while folding the wings up, and as soon as they were it was as simple as lifting the Shuttle up and placing it down away from the display stand. The display tower slides right out of place with ease, and then the Shuttle can be secured in the landing gear slots built into the base. I did this by getting one into place and then slightly adjusting the position of the others by lightly poking them until they fell into place. Before putting the panels back on it’s necessary to remove a few small pieces that get in the way while the wings are folded up. The specific pieces are highlighted in the instructions which makes it easy to be sure you removed the right ones. The built-in drawers to the base holds all of the pieces that need to be removed while your Shuttle is landed down. Once I stashed away the spare parts the panels slid right back into place, and the wings easily folded up into position.
The build time for me was somewhere between 7-10 hours. There were some final modifications that I made to it while building from the preliminary instructions which added a little bit of time. Overall, I would suggest that you have at least some prior experience building LEGO® before building this MOC. It’s a very fluid and easy build, but there are a few areas such as aligning the angled plates correctly that could potentially be frustrating to a brand-new builder.
The Director is an addition that I am thrilled to add to the All-Out Brick line of MOCs, and I’m incredibly proud of the finished build and instruction package. This was the first time we tinkered with creating printed instruction manuals, and it was a success. Just wait until you see what we have planned for some of the other models hitting our webstore in the near future.