R6-T3x Intro and Overview
When I decided to build my own Astromech I knew that I was starting down a long and winding road. Let’s be honest here; I didn’t set out to build just any astromech, I was gonna build an R2D2! A trait that I have had as long as I can remember is that I always have preferred to go my own way… I just gotta be me. This means that I tend to run in a different direction than the majority. Sometimes this trait has provided me with an amazing journey, but often it only meant that I was not just blazing a new trail, but actually re-inventing the wheel! Working this way often means that I am working longer and harder on a problem than necessary, but for me it really is the problem-solving that I enjoy.
Okay, so I know I want to build an Astromech, where to start? I joined the R2Builders Club and spent months reading build logs and technical threads on the forums there. I also scoured the inter-webs looking for other builds. There are a number of Great R2-D2s out in the wild! During my research though, I found that I was equally drawn to the Other R-Series droids. There are the R4 and R5 droids in the original trilogy of course, but also those of the Expanded Star Wars Universe.
I eventually decided that I was going to start by building an Imperial, non-R2, unit. I began drawing up a pattern for an R4 Lampshade but very quickly moved on to an R6. The reasons that I chose this path are a bit of the process, I guess. I wanted to start with something that I was not going to feel pressured to be entirely faithful to its original (R2-D2 has many die-hard fans) and I wanted to choose something that was a bit unusual. No R6 has been in the SW movies and is not even considered cannon by many. I chose the Empire because I lean a bit towards the dark side already.
This decision means that I’ll be designing a Droid that has not been seen before, one of my one Designation, R6-T3x. My little R6 will have his back story fleshed out on these pages over time. I still plan to Scratch-Build as much as is reasonable. This Guy will consist of a Composite Body and Dome, Birch Legs and a wild assortment of materials for the feet and details (plastics, aluminum, resins). He will be static in 3-legged mode and feature Dome Lighting and Rotation, a Foot Drive System, and possibly a few toys and opening panels.
Any and All of these plans are subject to change with the wind, but one thing that is now set in stone is my Composite Body (more on that exciting project later).