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T.T.A. Albatross
A long-range anti-shipping flying-wing design.
About this creation


The Albatross was a purpose built maritime attack aircraft, designed by Llwyngwril Systems Ltd. They were purchased accidentally by the Chief Admiral of the Tarren Trade Authority, after he went out to buy two choc ices on a sunny day. The aeroplanes cost the staggeringly expensive amount of nine old pence: the entire navy purchasing budget for that year.





The aircraft’s engines were three unique nuclear powered rockets. The idea for these was copied from a cutaway drawing in the Eagle comic of the 1950s which the designers at Llwyngwril Systems liked the look of. This system gave the Albatross an almost unlimited range across the ocean. Unfortunately the designers forgot to build in any catering facilities for the crew. The pilots found it incredibly frustrating to be surrounded by water, water every where but not a drop to drink.





The Albatross had the longest wingspan of any aeroplane in the fleet at 72 studs. Its big wingspan made for a very efficient glide ratio of 23:1 in the event of an engine failure. The main spar was incredibly stiff and the wings would only flap approximately once in 1,000km. The aircraft was built using STUFF (Studs Up Ffront).





The Albatross had a mixed record in combat use. Older enemy sailors, equipped with crossbow SAMs, would often stop one of three of the attacking aircraft.





Albatrosses were armed with guns and a single Harpoon anti-shipping missile. The twin Keckler & Hoch auto-cannon were devastatingly accurate. It would normally take an Albatross three shots fewer than other attack aircraft to destroy the target. Launching the Harpoon ASM at a fleet of enemy ships would always leave a hole in one.





The Tarren Trade Authority’s Albatross squadrons flew from Jonathan Livingston NAS, near the town of Fleetwood. The northwest coast of Britain is notoriously damp and crews were issued with special rain-coats, made by Samuel Coleridge, the tailor. It was a common sight to see Albatross crews sheltering from the rain in their Fleetwood macs.





Crew access was through hinged bubble canopies or via the massive dorsal hatches. These opened to allow access for maintaining the atomic engines and servicing other equipment, such as the ejection seats. As the cockpit was high up from the ground Llwyngwril Ladder Systems produced a special General Utility Loading Ladder or GULL.





This view of the cockpit area was taking from a crane which was about to refuel the Albatross's nuclear core. Much of what can be seen was claimed to be decorative "greebles" but the designers responded that every feature on the aircraft was essential to its operation. They later lost a liable action in the TTA courts.






Fourth Wall



The influences behind this design include various flying wing designs from the post-war period but especially the Northrop YB-49. The colour scheme was once again influenced by 1970s and 80s sci-fi illustrations, especially the Terran Trade Authority books and Peter Elson.

There's a prize for anybody who can spot all of the various Albatross references in the description. The boys at The Lego Car Blog have kindly given me one of the Smarties that they feed to their Elves.




Comments

 I like it 
  February 6, 2014
Very nice, I love how it opens to reveal the interior, the canopies fit nicely in the design, a great design all around.
 I like it 
  January 25, 2014
Great ship, the wings design and the way the cockpit opens are really ingenious... i also love the color scheme you've chosen and the interior details top notch!
 I made it 
  October 18, 2013
Quoting Stephan N Oh yea a stratosphere ship i love it over all are the weapons really inside the ship
Yes, the weapons really do fold inside and the wheels too!
 I like it 
  October 18, 2013
Oh yea a stratosphere ship i love it over all are the weapons really inside the ship
David Roberts
 I like it 
Emerald Knight
  October 7, 2013
Fabulous !>.....well done
 I like it 
  October 4, 2013
Those pics are just beautiful!!! The design is a piece of art and the opened cockpick is like an opened gift. Brilliant. Excellent. Stunning.
 I like it 
  October 3, 2013
Wow. I had forgotten the power of the STUFF technique. I am impressed.
 I made it 
  October 3, 2013
Quoting Scott Johnson FANTASTIC!!!! Im assuming you made it keckler and hoch on purpose. correct?
Of course! Messrs Keckler & Hoch have a long and proud tradition of supplying weaponary to Llwyngwril Systems: http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/360355 and http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/366405
 I like it 
  October 3, 2013
epic ship man, love how the cockpit opens and with all the gadgets just awesome
 I like it 
  October 3, 2013
FANTASTIC!!!! Im assuming you made it keckler and hoch on purpose. correct?
 I like it 
  October 2, 2013
So sleek and detailed! This is excellent work! Those drop-down weapons took me by surprise. I dig the color scheme, too.
 I like it 
  October 1, 2013
That is just epic!
 I like it 
  October 1, 2013
Ok.....
 I like it 
  September 30, 2013
Awesome!
 I like it 
  September 29, 2013
Great work! Come see some of Sector-B's work... But beware of the Marios...
 I like it 
  September 29, 2013
Fantastic work, well done!
 I made it 
  September 25, 2013
Quoting Alex Rode This is making Lego look out of this world. I can't see myself ever making something this amazing, but you inspire me. Epic!
Just build what you enjoy and be prepared to take it to pieces and rebuild it: more than than once! I had to do a total rebuild to include to include the big doors on top and then another rebuild to include the red stripes. Being able to buy extra parts on Bricklink helps loads too :)
 I like it 
  September 25, 2013
This is making Lego look out of this world. I can't see myself ever making something this amazing, but you inspire me. Epic!
 I like it 
  September 24, 2013
Great work here!
 I like it 
  September 24, 2013
That's just all kinds of cool!
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting Ludgonious . Superb design. I really like the color palette and the swooshability. The functioning weapon bays, landing gear, and cockpit is just icing on the cake. Well done!
Thank you! This can be swooshed one handed, allowing the other hand to fiddle with the guns and leaving the voice free for zapping noises. It's always important for me to build robust and playable MOCs.
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Superb design. I really like the color palette and the swooshability. The functioning weapon bays, landing gear, and cockpit is just icing on the cake. Well done!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Perfect idea..
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Woah! This is stunning! Great colour scheme too!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
awesome! nice design!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Really cool design! Love the colour scheme and where you got the inspirational name from ;-)
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
WOW
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Awesome build and great shots! The insides were a nice surprise, too. Well done!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Love it! The shaping is really complicated and makes for a great appearance! the detail inside the cockpit is really good too.
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Very cool!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
I love the sleekness of this! Awesome!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Incredible detailing and a really sleek design! Wow!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Oh that is a beautiful ship! I like that it kind of looks like a bird!
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting Gilbert Despathens Monty Python... I should have guessed. Even though I used Google for too many of those references, it was still a lot of fun!
It was always going to Python or something from Radio 4, which is also peculiarly British :)
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting David Alexander Smith The hatches are superb and the red weaponry so wonderful in its toy-plastic tone. Congratulations on your second TBB. I think you get known as a builder of certain things over there; I've had two post there now, and both for silhouette work. Anyway most deserved and sure to be one of many future appearances.
Thank you! I know what you mean about the colour of the weapons. I think that it adds a bit of a cartoonish feel to the build. I didn't want proper, scary black guns, like in the real word!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
The hatches are superb and the red weaponry so wonderful in its toy-plastic tone. Congratulations on your second TBB. I think you get known as a builder of certain things over there; I've had two post there now, and both for silhouette work. Anyway most deserved and sure to be one of many future appearances.
  September 23, 2013
Monty Python... I should have guessed. Even though I used Google for too many of those references, it was still a lot of fun!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
I love your unique builds and this one is no exception. Fantastic design, colours and details. My favourite part is the opening cockpit. Brilliant
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting Reaper the Ultimate . Excellent MOC! The same cannot be said for the the puns, however. Nice MOC
But each pun was lovingly hand crafted and polished with great care... :P
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting Stuart Lucas Brilliant flying wing design. The colourscheme is as striking as ever and the retractable weaponry and landing gear are great details! Excellent commentary too... Fleetwod macs. Haha!
Thank you! I thought that Fleetwood macs would pass most people by. Does anybody called a raincoat a "mac" anymore, especially outside Britain? I was really satisfied to include "proper" retracting wheels, with door s that close after it's deploy, like a real aeroplane.
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting matt rowntRee Samuel Coleridge the tailor = Brilliant. Love all the references to the "Rhyme". Excellent flyer there. A thing of beauty is a joy forever, and this one is no exception. Elegant lines with spectacular color blocking. The cockpits are top notch. Hopefully those seats are lead lined. Wonderful!
Thank you. Researching this made me read the poem for the first time. I hadn't realised where some of the quotes that I already knew came from: fascinating. I was thinking about the aeroplane having some structural problems: "and all boards did shrink."
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting Gilbert Despathens I think I found most of the references: -Water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink -Sameul Taylor Coleridge (although the first two do not directly tie to the albatross featured in the source poem) -Ancient mariners shooting albatrosses with crossbows -Jonathan Livingston Seagull -Choc ices, proven not to be a seagull's favorite ice cream despite claims to the contrary -GULL ladders -Fleetwood Mac's "Albatross" -Great Albatrosses have the greatest wingspan of any living bird -Your albatross flies like a real albatross in both technique and flight distance I am highly suspicious of the phrase "nine old pence," but I can't find its connection to sea birds of any kind, although it was the amount charged to the pound of the People's Budget of 1909, which is the closest connection I could find to the context. I think I would have to be British to understand it. Thanks for the challenge; it was a fun way to kill fifteen minutes.
Brilliant! And in just 15 minutes too! If you lived in Britain I'd recommend taking up doing the Times Cryptic crossword! I think that you're right, the reference that you've missed is very British humour. The chocices and 9p are a very olique reference to this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PJix23IeF8
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting Ape Fight A brilliant design, brilliantly built and brilliantly photographed : ) 5 stars. Also, after a quick flick through, slightly encoded so as not to spoil the fun: Golf, rats of the sky, and instrumental : )
Well spotted but no Smartie! I had the "instrumental" on loop when I was typing this up: I helped to calm the giggles as I invented the write-up.
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting MCLegoboy ! This is one sweet build. The shape, the techniques, the details, the color scheme, everything about it is really cool. I love the view of the inside. That is one great engine design. It's just an amazing build in all aspects.
Thank you! I had to take the whole thing to pieces to build the big doors into the top. Then I realised that there had better be something inside for people to see!
 I made it 
  September 23, 2013
Quoting Gerald F. Superb design! I really admire the way the cockpit opens. Also, nice amount of detail you fit into the entire vessel. The cockpit is probably my favorite section. Nice job on making the wings so long and smooth, I can almost taste the ship due to the colors. :P
Thank you! I think that the long, smooth wings were my brain's reaction to SHIPtember on Flickr. Everyone is building long and thin, so I went short & wide instead :)
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Excellent MOC! The same cannot be said for the the puns, however. Nice MOC
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Great build, and great fun reading your commentary :-)
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
Brilliant flying wing design. The colourscheme is as striking as ever and the retractable weaponry and landing gear are great details! Excellent commentary too... Fleetwod macs. Haha!
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
I think you have trully outdone yourself with this one... build, picture, and commentary-wise! :)
 I like it 
  September 23, 2013
I never comment on MOCpages anymore unless it is something really cool ; ) I really like this, the shape is totally slick. The interior greebs and the way the cockpit opens are just fantastic also. Cheers!
David Roberts
 I like it 
Dr. Monster
  September 22, 2013
Incredible MOC! I really like the color scheme, and the interior detail is killer. Great write up and overall concept too.
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
Wow. A truly inspired build. The wings are stunning, but then to have a totally cool cockpit too. One of the best 'ships' I've seen in a while.
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
:) one of yor coolest mate
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
It's as impossible to look at your MOCs without being amazed as it is to read your descriptions and not laugh. Brilliant work on every aspect, a spectacular craft and a hilarious write-up.
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
Samuel Coleridge the tailor = Brilliant. Love all the references to the "Rhyme". Excellent flyer there. A thing of beauty is a joy forever, and this one is no exception. Elegant lines with spectacular color blocking. The cockpits are top notch. Hopefully those seats are lead lined. Wonderful!
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
What can I say that wouldn't be an echo of someone else's comment? Regardless, your execution is flawless. The shaping is top notch, and the color groupings are spot on. It definitely reminds me of a few shows I watched as a kid. again, excellent work!
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
I think I found most of the references: -Water, water everywhere but not a drop to drink -Sameul Taylor Coleridge (although the first two do not directly tie to the albatross featured in the source poem) -Ancient mariners shooting albatrosses with crossbows -Jonathan Livingston Seagull -Choc ices, proven not to be a seagull's favorite ice cream despite claims to the contrary -GULL ladders -Fleetwood Mac's "Albatross" -Great Albatrosses have the greatest wingspan of any living bird -Your albatross flies like a real albatross in both technique and flight distance I am highly suspicious of the phrase "nine old pence," but I can't find its connection to sea birds of any kind, although it was the amount charged to the pound of the People's Budget of 1909, which is the closest connection I could find to the context. I think I would have to be British to understand it. Thanks for the challenge; it was a fun way to kill fifteen minutes.
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
A really neat build dude!
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
A brilliant design, brilliantly built and brilliantly photographed : ) 5 stars. Also, after a quick flick through, slightly encoded so as not to spoil the fun: Golf, rats of the sky, and instrumental : )
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
amazing aircraft! once again great backstory!
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
Massive work! I love the colors and everything; brilliant :-)
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
I was wondering when you'd next hit us with one of your distinctive creations. This is another brilliant ship/aircraft/fighter/bomber/thing, I love the colour scheme and the cockpit design is brilliant. Weapons are neat too. All in all, excellent build!
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
Beautiful ! Love the shape of the wing! I like the retractable landing gear and weapons. Go Navy!
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
These colorfull, spectacular flying machines of yours, are topclass, I love them.
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
Very cool, and excellent greeblies. Er... essential working components, I should say.
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
Absolutely gorgeous. Love the detailing in the cockpit and the big red cannons. Very original.
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
This is one sweet build. The shape, the techniques, the details, the color scheme, everything about it is really cool. I love the view of the inside. That is one great engine design. It's just an amazing build in all aspects.
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
Great design. I especially like the opening hatches on various parts of the aircraft.
 I like it 
  September 22, 2013
Superb design! I really admire the way the cockpit opens. Also, nice amount of detail you fit into the entire vessel. The cockpit is probably my favorite section. Nice job on making the wings so long and smooth, I can almost taste the ship due to the colors. :P
 
By David Roberts
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LEGO models my own creation MOCpages toys shop T.T.A. AlbatrossSpace and science fiction


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