Since I don’t have a model to use for the build (like an old SDF-1 toy or model kit) I plan to rely totally on images I saved from the internet, such as these favorites:
Most, if not all, Macross/Robotech fans have seen this line art a thousand and one times. I first saw this artwork back in the early 90s when I purchased “Robotech Art 2.” The only downside to using online images is that most of the quality detailed ones are black and white line art which makes it hard to distinguish the exact color scheme (I’ll try to speak more on that later). However I have faith that these images will be just about enough, they have worked perfectly for me in the past.
So far I have I placed 6 orders at various Bricklink stores and 3 have been delivered already. I have also made one trip to the LEGO Store, but I think it will be my last since I need so many specific pieces it would be best just to buy everything on Bricklink. The total cost so far has been around $400, I’m hoping that I have already purchased the majority of the pieces required and that the budget for this project won’t exceed $500 – time will tell.
How do I know what bricks/plates/tiles/etc. to buy?
I really don’t. Obviously I know I need an abundance of blue and white bricks and plates. So I just went ahead a brought a bunch of those. I also have tub full of a few hundred old miscellaneous pieces that I have been using to build miniature mock-ups of certain parts of the SDF-1. By playing around with those pieces I could tell I would need a number of tiles, slopes, inverted slopes, modified bricks, etc.
However I would say 50% of my brick buying has been based on guesses. I examine the line-art and then browse through Bricklink. If I see pieces that resembles the line art, or pieces that I want to experiment with I buy them. I know at the end of this process I’ll probably end up with buckets of unused brand new pieces that just didn’t work out, but I rather have too many LEGO for this project as opposed to too little.