Neoclassic Space SRV-917 Badger . Here is my minifig scale Neoclassic Space Lego Surface Reconnaissance Vehicle (SRV) 917 “Badger.” This model is my creation that took inspiration from the Lego Space sets of the 1970s. You can also see larger images at my Flickr site: https://www.flickr.com/photos/118702264@N05. You can find PDF building instructions on my Etsy site: www.etsy.com/ca/shop/KurtsMOCs. .
The Surface Reconnaissance Vehicle (SRV) 917 “Badger” is a transportable vehicle used for the surface exploration of distant planets. It can be carried in a Neoclassic Space Galaxy Explorer’s transport bay and its low profile and compact design make it ideal for intergalactic travel. It is designed as the surface excursion vehicle of a larger intergalactic exploration team.
My initial concept for the Badger came from the small lunar rovers that came with many of the Classic Lego sets. I wanted to create a vehicle that could be carried in a larger spaceship (still under construction!). I drew ideas from many childhood influences and the many Neoclassic Space designs produced by many other Classic Space aficionados. The Badger is a continuation of my much earlier TST-100 Sparrow drop ship project.
The SRV-917 has a crew of four (commander, pilot, observer, engineer) and can accommodate up to five additional operations personnel. The pilot and observer sit up front and the commander oversees operations from the command post behind the pilot. The engineer works in the reconnaissance station and oversees the vehicle’s performance and condition. Operations personnel can be seated in the passenger compartment located directly behind the commander’s station. The reconnaissance station is located in the rear of the Badger and is flanked by two external equipment bays. Large doors open for access to the observation and transmitter equipment. Off the back of the vehicle is a large and transparent rear access hatch used for observation and egress.
When designing the Badger, I wanted to centre the design around some signature Lego pieces, such as the large transparent shell for the forward canopy, the window tile plateau pieces for the passenger compartment, and the large balloon tires. From there, I used curved and angled plates to complement the signature pieces, resulting in a series of complex structural shapes. One of the goals was to create a studs-not-on-top (SNOT) design. I used a variety of pieces in parallel and perpendicular placement in order to achieve this goal. I also wanted to use the traditional Classic Space colour palette but with a few additional colours for variety.
The Badger is a completely electric operated vehicle. Three large battery packs are attached to the electric drivetrain and solar collectors are built into the roof of the reconnaissance station (these can be seen in this image outlined in a yellow line). There are also external storage bays situated on either side of the passenger compartment’s skylights. The grey fences can be rotated to provide a contained area to place equipment boxes and other items.
I wanted the balance the design aesthetic with the functionality of the vehicle. The Badger’s equipment, sensors, and electronics are all positioned and contained by the exterior shell of the vehicle. The same is true for the interior of the vehicle where I tried to lay out the computer stations and seating areas logically.
In this image, you can see how the Badger is assembled. The main chassis is a self-contained, pressurized unit with two entry and egress points in the front and rear. There are four electric drive trains, each turning two of the balloon wheels. Encapsulating the drive train are three battery packs that provide power to the drive train and the vehicle’s electrical needs. The batteries can be charged on board the Galactic Explorer or via the onboard solar collectors.
In this image, you can see the layout of the interior from the pilot’s and observer’s station to the commander’s station to the passenger compartment to the reconnaissance station and the rear access hatch. The pilot and observer sit low to the ground in the front and have a large forward view. The commander can oversee vehicle operations while still also maintaining direct visual contact with the reconnaissance station. The passenger compartment has folding seats in order to provide better circulation. In between each seat are storage compartments for food and personal belongings.
The reconnaissance station is linked to the Badger’s onboard sensors and can relay information to and from orbital vessels. A long-range scanner and transmitter are stowed in the starboard equipment bay. A recon drone and sensor markers are stowed in the port equipment bay.
Some influences on the concept and design came from memories of old TV shows that featured vehicles with interesting features, gadgets, and gizmos such as the modified semi-truck from The Highwayman, the exploration RV from the Ark II, and more recently, the vehicles from Aliens and Prometheus also come to mind.
Here you can see how the interior was finished. I wanted to SNOT design as much of the vehicle as I could, even the ceiling and lighting was finished. The suspension for the drive train is adjustable, being able to rise to navigate difficult terrain or lower to fit into the hanger of a transport.
The design of the Badger also took influence from a variety of military and all-terrain vehicles. The many 8x8 wheeled vehicles, such as the LAV and Stryker, are obvious influences.
This Badger is configured with the top-mounted floodlight and transmitter array. The vehicle’s normal headlights flank the forward canopy. The observer’s station on the starboard is where data from the Badger’s various sensors can be accessed. This position also provides the pilot and commander with another set of eyes.
One of my biggest influences was the Soviet-built MAZ-537 military truck. Its simplistic design and endless configurations inspired me to create a simple chassis that could be modified for other uses. Currently, I am also working several alternate versions of the Badger design. Stay tuned!
The rear access hatch has fold-down ladders to aid with egress. There are also rear lights for illumination, red driving lights, and green identification lights. For some reason, Classic Space sets always included transparent green pieces; I couldn’t refuse to include them!
Here you can see the observer’s station clamshell door open as well and the port forward access clamshell door. You can also see the storage bay fence erected and some equipment boxes in place. To aid with egress and entry, there are steps that can be rotated down for better access.
One of the reconnaissance officers is deploying the remote drone. The long-range scanner and transmitter are also deployed to relay signals from the drone to the Galaxy Explorer in orbit.
I hope to complete a series of Neoclassic Space projects in the near future. I am thinking of doing an interpretation of the iconic Galaxy Explorer large enough to hold the Badger, Sparrow, and a few other interesting future projects!
The rear access hatch is opened and engineers are setting up a remote sensor marker and then heading back to base. Don’t go checking out any recent meteor strikes! Oops, wrong storyline!
Thanks to everyone who supports and encourages my work. I enjoy taking a break from my other projects and indulge in something of my own design. I hope you like it!