Tuesday, 16 July 2019

Saturn V

Those of you who were reading my blog ten years ago (back when it was "Teahouse on the Tracks") may remember that I decided to commemorate the fortieth anniversary of Apollo 11 by building a Saturn V rocket.

I started with the 1/96th scale Revell kit, re-released in 2009! It's actually about as old as the Apollo program itself, and because it was tooled-up slightly ahead of the missions themselves, it's supposedly not quite accurate for Apollo 11.

Looks good enough to me, though:

Although I build the kit exactly as it came out of the box, I did have some reference photos to go by, taken during a visit to KSC in 2008:

It was fun to compare and contrast with the kit as I assembled the stages, starting at the bottom and working up:

My intention had been to complete the model by July 20 2009, but that was a little optimistic. What I did achieve was all the outside bits of the Saturn V, but large areas were left unpainted. Still, it looked impressive enough:

I'd like to say that I cracked on and finished the Saturn V that summer, but I didn't. In fact, once I got it to the stage in the above picture, I was quite happy for it to sit on my desk and there matters rested for a good few years - in fact, quite a large chunk of the decade between then and now.

Two or three years ago I did complete the rocket, however - well nearly. I assembled and painted lunar module, and completed all the exterior painting of the Saturn stack, and did all the engines and fuel tanks. But there are still a few decals to be added to the LM. Perhaps I'll get around to them somewhere between now and the sixtieth anniversary...

The model as it stands today, July 16th 2019:


  1. Looks to me as if I still need to add some black areas to the top stage, but my recollection is that the kit instructions didn't cover them, so I meant to look at photos.

  2. I remember making the smaller scale Airfix version back in the day. The Revell one was the better model but probably out of my reach as a teenager...The moon landing celebrated over this weekend also remind me that as a child my parents with normally strict bedtimes let us stay up to around 4 am to watch the Eagle land.

  3. Nice! I've never felt the urge to build models myself, but it's inspiring to see others do it. Perhaps someday I'll try my hand.

    Cool song, too; very creative.

  4. So,how many coffee cups high is it? Referring to the pic with the cup.
    Looks great.

  5. LEGO makes a Saturn V that I was really impressed with, and recently released an Apollo 11 lunar lander. You might enjoy them as well.