If you want to grab my attention in a Scifi movie or show, you have to get the tech right. More specifically the vehicles. Battlestar Galactica is a perfect example of this. The Galactica was an awesome ship and the Vipers as the fighter squadrons were a great complement. Most of BSG is in space, but when they went planetside they had the Landram.


As a model builder I was eager to build any and all scifi kits. The Battlestar Galactica line had four really cool kits The Battlestar Galactica, The Viper, The Cylon Raider and The Cylon Basestar. Which were all really well done. The other two things that I wanted and never got were the Shuttle and the Landram. The Landram did come out in toy form. Unfortunately it was only released in Canada and in very small numbers. As a matter of fact, I didn’t even know it existed until a few years ago. I just knew there had to be a model kit of some sort out there. But the only thing that I could find was a Pepakura paper model.

landram 3     I had been introduced to the craft by my oldest son. He and most of the other people i saw doing it were all doing helmets like Ironman or Halo. It never dawned on me that vehicles were out there. I download the plans and set them aside. Almost a year went by before I came up with the idea to use the paper model as a template for a plastic model. I already had sheets up plastic from another project, so there was no hesitation in getting this project on the bench.



Step one was cutting out the pieces I wanted and tracing the pattern onto the Evergreen plastic sheets. I tried very hard to make the cut as straight as possible. The next challenge was gluing the parts together and keeping everything square. Since this was the first time I’d attempted this, the shapes were okay. However, everything was so out of square it wasn’t funny. I figured that the plastic was cheap enough that if I had to remake something so be it. The second section had fewer angle to deal with. It did seem to come out a bit better and once glue to first section my confidence was starting to build.


imageThe third section had angles everywhere and in my opinion is the most distinctive features of the vehicle. I got the shape right for the most part. But once again it was out of square. It was too late to turn back now. So let’s glue this thing all to get and see what we get. Well what we got was a pretty good replica of the original. Hats off to the paper pattern.  I’ve tried to freehand things like this before and they never come out this well. So bravo to The treads are from a Tamiya 1:35 M60 tank. Another visual que that things were going right was going to be the shape of the treads. The Landram used in the show was actually a converted Thiokol Snowcat. The treads on the Landram were different in shape then a tanks. I’m sure very few people would even bother looking but I’d know they were wrong. After a bit of trial and error it all seem to come together.



This was the point at which I was sure everything was going to work out. The shape looked right but once it was primed them I knew I was on the right track. The difficult part now was finding greeblies the right shape and size to mimic the original. This took probably the better part of a day. And i looked everywhere. Hunting for detail greeblies can be one of the most frustrating and yet rewarding part of a build. Especially when you know what part you want, you’ve seen it recently, but have no idea where it is now. The first place to look was the Galactica kits. Mainly to maintain the style and design of the Galactica universe. But that didn’t last long I ended up using piece from every corner of my model hoard. The most interesting was the side door that looked like the front of an AT-AT. I made a quick mold and bing bang boo, DOORS.

image     And into the paint booth. The primer really brings the whole thing together. I decided on Tamiya Dark Sea Gray. The final bit of detail was the badging. I really want to recreate the logo from the 70’s. But i was reaching Landram overload. I did have decals from the new Galactica kits and decide to make my own logo. I mimic the Star Trek Shuttle style markings and just used the name, a ship unit number and logo. Simple, realistic. After a quick clear coat. I grabbed the camera and ran into the backyard to take advantage of the days last light and go real foliage. Okay, the grass isn’t in scale, but you’re not supposed to be looking at the grass. Having a Battlestar Galactica Landram in my collection is a long-awaited wish come true. It’s only heightened by the fact that I made it myself with little more than paper templates. This is why we scratchbuild. If they don’t make it in mass, we make our own. Now go build something!


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