Tag Archives: Red Spacecat

Teamwork makes the LEGO spaceship dream work

I’m really liking this Swordfish frigate by Stijn van der Laan (you might know him better as Red Spacecat – after all, he’s been here before). It’s part-submarine, part-aircraft carrier, part-Mass Effect, even part-Halo, perhaps. It’s inspired by a piece of concept art, but Stijn has applied a hefty dose of artistic license to make it his own. And he’s called in some big guns to help him do so, too. If you’re going to solicit advice from a fellow LEGO spaceship builder, then there are few better people to ask than Nick Trotta! Again, our archives will show you why. In this case, Nick apparently provided some guidance on the tapered nose, capping off Stijn’s great work. What a formidable pairing these two talented builders make!

Swordfish class frigate "Valion"

A mighty modular LEGO mech for marching

This green and white mech by Red Spacecat has more options than you can shoot a rocket at. Giving me some Solid Snake vibes with those multi-jointed legs, this mech can be outfitted with a variety of weapons to suit any deployment needs. Built to the scale of a fairly uncommon figure from the early days of LEGO System sets. One great part used is the long mast piece more commonly found on ships, but my favorite is the double stack of tank-tread parts used for the massive machine gun rounds.


Here’s another photo showing off some of the other weapon options, and with the leg armor removed, you can see even more of the great details used in this model.


Can never find a flathead when you need one...

When it comes to your flathead needs, LEGO builder Red Spacecat has got you covered with this awesome mech. It’s based on concept art by Aaron Beck, and Spacecat has deftly translated it to the bricks, retaining its uncanny valley-ness of an almost-but-not-quite humanoid shape. And of course, there’s that distinctive flat solar panel head, and I have to say I am loving how much use those gold triangle tiles get as solar panels in LEGO fan builds. It’s a small thing, but I also keep returning to the joints on the arms; they’re so perfectly industrial; you can easily imagine just how this thing moves.

Aaron Beck's "Flathead"

Coming soon to a spaceport near you

Despite the best efforts of large online retailers, drones still haven’t quite taken off (geddit?) as the main method of transport for goods. When they do though, I hope they look as good as this LEGO drone created by Stijn van der Laan (Red Spacecat). It’s a perfect example of near-future sci-fi – it has the classic drone layout we all know and love in the form of the propellors on each corner. But at the same time it looks too slick and cool to be from this day and age. It has a touch of the Boston Dynamics about it.

Cargo lifter

Even the container matches this aesthetic! It can be easy to overcomplicate future space-freight containers, but Stijn has done a sterling job to keep this convincingly realistic. Naturally, the container and craft are compatible.

Cargo lifter

A silky frigate for those deep space patrols

Builder Red Spacecat serves up a silky smooth LEGO frigate for SHIPtember. Coming in at a length of 120 studs, this ship possesses the curves of a luxury liner and the firepower of a deep space frigate. The ship retains lovely definition for each section, despite having mostly white pieces. This allows the colors of the details to really pop and stand out, especially the black details against the stark white body. I particularly love the engine wings with their colorful banding and slick design. And check out that tower at the ship’s rear center–it has nice shaping and parts usage. Overall, I’d say this frigate wins both space battles and battles of style. It’s a great display piece and awesome design for a spaceship, no doubt in my mind.


The future of freight

We might be facing shipping delays here but Stijn van der Laan shows us what the future of high class shipping can look like. This LEGO interplanetary freighter is absolutely stunning and the modular cargo load pairs perfectly. The simple white and grey colors with orange highlights contrasts nicely with the bright cargo and worker vessel. The subtle shaping adds some great texture and depth to the fairly simple overall shaping of the freighter. This is an absolute masterclass of microspace.

Interplanetary freighter

Click here for more details on the cargo!

Pegasus in the modern era

The winged horse of Greek mythology has evolved quite a lot over the eons. Controversial origins and dangerous quests have fluctuated with ideas from fairytales and childrens’ stories. Well, Builder Stijn van der Laan has presented his own version and its certainly not suited for little girls. Unless those little girls have a penchant for war. The RX-12 Pegasus is an unmanned aerial vehicle partly inspired by modern drones with a prop plane twist. Some nice parts usage with newer elements rounds out this build for a smooth design.


The clean, almost studless top portion of this build does well to trick the eye. Stijn made use of the new wedge pieces from the Porsche 911 to achieve the nice slopes on the nose and prop sections. The counter-rotating propellers also use black “flipper” elements to nicely emulate the style of the real thing.


Of course, something like this usually has to land eventually. The builder did a great job with the thin but effective crafting of the landing gear, which I imagine nicely tucks away under some of the exposed panels. This drone has a delightfully sleek profile and a ton of accesories if you feel like checking them out. I love seeing models build to scale with the Technic figures. They may be a bit of a relic but they’re still a delightful piece of LEGO history.


Oh, a little disclaimer from the writer. War is a serious and difficult aspect of the human condition. I will celebrate the design of the builder and even certain capabilities of the real-world inspiration but I do not stand by the warfare supported by such devices. Instead of bombs, I wish we could use these to drop knowledge. For archaeological and ecological surveys, for species and habitat maintenance. Perhaps one day we shall see such an aspirational era.

Refuel, restock, reconnoitre

This vignette by Red Spacecat shows off his latest build, an unmanned combat aerial vehicle. The RQ-190 is being refueled by her crew and prepped for her next mission. This super smooth drone is actually a redesign of a remote-control plane concept that Red Spacecat recently shared. Switching the color scheme of the RC plane to all black just so happens to make the butterfly-inspired design look very similar to a military stealth drone. The angles of the wings hug tight to the curves of the main body and the snub nose lets us see the landing gear peaking out underneath. The slopes and tiles used on the wings make for a smooth, immersive model overall.

RQ-190 Nightwing UCAV

The little builds for the tool chest, bomb cart, and fire extinguisher (I assume) are great details for this vignette. The gears used on the ends of the bombs are clever and, though it might not be exactly “legal,” the cut hose used on the tip of the fire extinguisher is a perfect addition. Continue reading

I’m just gonna drop this right here

It’s funny when I imagine a cargo dropship I imagine ordering goods online, then a dropship drops them in front of my house from a mile above and shatters them all over my driveway. But I suppose the process is more sophisticated in space. Red Spacecat has built a LEGO cargo dropship and it’s precisely how anyone would imagine it. It’s like this thing already exists even though it comes from a builder’s imagination. That is a testament to its clean and practical design. I’m particularly loving its dark blue (with a flash of dark red) color scheme. The rotating engines are an added touch of brilliance. Red Spacecat seems to be an up-and-coming builder we should all pay attention to. We’ve featured another model from this same person earlier this week.

Cargo Dropship

This dog is a soldier’s best friend

If you’ve watched Black Mirror or the recent War of the Worlds series on Amazon Prime, then you probably have the same healthy fear of robot dogs that I do. But if this 4-legged bot by Red Spacecat is on our side, I just might change my mind. The military bot is armed to the teeth with a large top-mounted gun, and with those padded feet, you won’t hear it coming.