The Raven II, more popularly known as the “Raven X” is a custom-made high performance racing craft built in the spirit of the great Air Races of the early 20th century.
This model is a remake of my X-89 Raven which was probably my first real MOC, built in 1988 (5th grade). The idea was to preserve the overall design but modernize the style and technique. The the wing shape, skid-style landing gear, 1×1 cones in the nose, the large engine in the tail, and the smaller thrusters behind the cockpit all made it into this new version of the ship. The large cannon on the roof had to go to allow for the canopy to open (one of the main flaws of the original design was that you had to take the model apart to get the pilot in and out). As this new design felt like a racer and not a fighter, the cannon really lost its purpose anyway.
The engine mounting went through several complex variations before I finally settled on the 20 year old L bracket. Another tough spot was the mounting for the rear skid which I also ended up doing in a rather simple configuration. I’m not so happy with it, but the engine is interesting enough to distract from it, I think. The SNOT work between the nose and cabin (the heart of which is well concealed under the nose) was very difficult untill I dumped the use of a certain special piece which I intend to use in another model. Finally, the work behind the seat and above the engine mounting was difficult due to all the different things I wanted in there. The seat back, thrusters, flag, and the podracer fender all had to be mounted in one little spot, and the whole thing had to be sturdy enough to not fall apart.
Perhaps the hardest part of all was nailing down the color scheme. The skis only come in red, teal, yellow, and white. I really wanted to use black and teal, but not enough other things came in teal and I also couldn’t quite find a color of glass to go with it. So in the end, Red and Black is a rather uncreative color scheme, but I felt forced into it. On the other hand, the model is buildable in real life, in the colors shown.