This is a model of the Delta II rocket that launched the Gravity Probe B in April 2004. The rocket it technically a Delta-7920-10C, indicating it was a Extra Extended Long Tank using the RS-27A engine with 9 GEM 40 strap-on motors and had the AJ10-118K second stage with a 10 foot composite payload faring. You can find all this info at Kevin Forsyth's website, History of the Delta Launch Vehicle.
This model was designed by Erik de Groen, and was originally available at the Volkssterrenwach Philippus Lansbergen. Erik decided that he didn't want to host his models on their website anymore, so he took them down. He's looking into putting them somewhere else, but hasn't come up with an idea yet. Once he does, I'll be sure to post that here. Anyway, this is actually a 1/72 scale model that I resized to 1/96. The 1/96 scale models aren't as detailed as this one, but I wanted to keep all my rockets a consistent scale. By printing at 75% of the original size, you can convert 1/72 scale to 1/96 scale. The details were preserved quite well and the model builds up beautifully. This model takes a little skill to build, so I would jump into this one unless you've built a few paper models before.
The basic model only have a few "3D" details that are not just printed on the paper. I wanted to make the details more visible so I printed an extra copy of the necessary parts and used those pages to build up some details. You can see them on the upper part of the rocket and on the white band near the center.
Those details add a little depth to what I would otherwise consider to be a 'flat' model. One of the drawbacks of paper models is that you can lose some of the little details that aren't flush with the rest of the surface. Building them out of paper requires you to laminate a few sheets of cardstock together and shape them with your hobby knife or sand paper. You will also have to color them, so the process can be a little daunting for a newcomer. This was my first attempt to add those little details in and I think it turned out pretty well.
9 Little Rockets
The only real 'hard' part of this model was the strap-on motors. They are fairly small in diameter and there are 9 of them. I managed to make all of them without messing any up and keep my sanity at the same time. I considered that a success all by itself.
I also attached the motors differently than the instructions says to. I didn't want to 'drill' holes in the sides of the body and use toothpicks. I ended up rolling up some strips and using the little cylinders and my connectors without cutting any holes. It turned out pretty well. I tried to duplicate what you see on the real rockets, but finding info for that was pretty hard. Eventually I settled on my old backup plan: It doesn't matter if you don't know what you are doing as long as you look good doing it. And in the end I'd say it looks pretty good.
This was a challenging model for me, and I think it turned out well. It's also the largest I've built at the time I made it. The Delta II rockets aren't the biggest rockets out there, but they are a decent size. If you want an impressive model for your collection then this one should do the trick.