Life-Sized Colonial Viper Touches Down In Australia

Don’t worry, this 8.4 meter (27 foot) Australian Viper won’t bite, but it’s likely to do a number on any Cylon Raiders that wander too close to Canberra. As recently reported by Riotact, creator [Baz Am] has been painstakingly piecing together this 1:1 scale replica of a Colonial Viper Mark II from the reimagined Battlestar Galactica series in his shed for several years now, and at this point things are really starting to come together.

On his personal site, [Baz] has been maintaining a build log for the fictional spacecraft since 2017 that covers everything from the electronics that power the cockpit displays to the surprisingly intricate woodworking that went into the lathe-turned 30 mm cannons. He’s even documented interviews he conducted with members of the show’s special effects team in his quest to get his version of the Viper to be as screen-accurate as possible.

Plywood bulkheads are mounted to an internal metal frame.

No matter how you look at this build, it’s impressive. But one thing we especially appreciated was the skill with which [Baz] manages to repurpose what would otherwise be junk. For example, the main cockpit display is actually an in-dash navigation system pulled from a car, and the engine’s turbine blades are cut out of aluminum road signs. He’s even managed to outfit the Viper with an array of real aircraft instruments by collecting broken or uncalibrated units from local pilots.

While the Viper might look like it’s ready to leap into action at a moment’s notice, there’s still quite a bit of work to be done. The craft’s fuselage, made of metal, wood, and foam, needs to be coated with fiberglass, sanded, and then painted to match its televised counterpart. [Baz] says that process will take at least another year, but also mentions off-hand that he’s thinking of adding a functional reaction-control system with cold gas thrusters — so we’re going to go out on a limb and say this is probably one of those projects that’s never quite finished. Not that we’re complaining, mind you. Especially when you consider the shaky track record the Battlestar Galactica franchise has when it comes to neatly wrapping things up in the finale. Continue reading “Life-Sized Colonial Viper Touches Down In Australia”

Viper Flight Simulator (a La Battlestar Galactica) Finished

Here’s a story about some guys who set out to build a flight simulator for the Viper from Battlestar¬†Galactica. The goal is to bring a grand project to the Maker Faire. This is a recurring challenge for the group, which has participated over the last several years. But this year they decided to go big and mounted a successful Kickstarter campaign to help with the cost.

The best place to get the build details is their progress updates page. Each week the cadre of teenagers tried to post some info about their progress, and we’ve got a big grin on our faces after reading through them. The simulator aims to provide you with as much of a space flight experience possible given the restraints which gravity imposes. The cockpit can roll and pitch a full 360 degrees in each direction. Of course safety is a concern and they were careful with their frame design and pilot restraint system. But so much more goes into this than just the physical build. There’s sound, lighting, and the virtual simulator, all of which have been complete at an impressive quality level. There’s a ton of video posted and we’ve embedded one short clip after the break showing off the cockpit’s dashboard.

Continue reading “Viper Flight Simulator (a La Battlestar Galactica) Finished”