Home Projects Morita MORITA


by Arnie


notes by Arnie

and DolphiN#1

what is it ?
The MORITA was the rifle from the Paul Verhoven
film ‘StarShip
, and featured heavily throughout the film. Some of the site
members here (DolphiN#1
and Arnie) are
going to construct several of these props from scratch, to create fully functional
airsoft replicas. The airsoft M41 PulseRifle,
and the MORITA project are going to be run consecutively, so expect
this page, and the PulseRifle page to be updated at roughly the same time.

The MORITA rifle,
is the rifle of the ‘Mobile Infantry’ (MI), a futuristic representation
of foot soldiers of the 23rd century. The MORITA comes in 3 basic forms,
the standard, the carbine (without the lower shotgun), and the sniper
version (long range). The image to the left shows the sniper version
(the model with the scope attached).

At this time we
are going to concentrate our efforts on the standard version.

is it really?
The actual props were built from two individual
firearms, and the actual design and ideas, may remind you of the PulseRifle,
from ‘Aliens’. The actual film, StarshipTroopers, was heavily slated upon
it’s release for heavily ‘borrowing’ from other films. In this respect, the
MORITA is unfortunatley, not particularly original in it’s design. To quote
ChrisW’s page
on StarShip Troopers
(which I’d highly recommend reading).

“…if Paul
Verhoeven learned anything during his stint in the Dutch marines, exposure
to Hollywood has since leached it from his mind.

Verhoeven et
al decided to leave out the powered armor, turning the MI into a fairly
conventional force, recognizable to any member of today’s armed forces
— except of, course, for the complete lack of artillery, mechanized
transport, armored fighting vehicles, squad-level automatic weapons
and indirect fire weapons such as mortars, other squad-level squad level
support systems, or combat medical units.

Tactics consist
of running towards the enemy in a big mob, running away from the enemy
in a big mob, and walking from point A to point B in a big mob. (I especially
like the scene where the MIs form a big circle around a Bug, with fellow
troopers in their line of fire, and shoot at the Bug in the center —
I guess they are not as picky about friendly fire casualties in the
22nd century.)

A supposedly
elite unit, the MIs would have a hard time defeating a unit of Campfire
Girls, let alone the Bugs…”

I couldn’t
have put it better myself. =)

notice in the image above, that if you look closely, you can see the
backsight of the ruger rifle, inside the MORITA outer shell.

Anyway, back to
the construction of this sci-fi replica. The MORITA is built in a tried
and tested ‘under and over’ design, with an automatic weapon at the
top, and an underlsung shotgun at the bottom.

The rifle in the
top half, is a heavily modified Ruger Mini-14, converted into
a ‘bullpup’ design. The lower firearm, is an Ithaca Model 37
pumpaction shotgun.

Shown below you’ll
find images of both the Mini-14, and the Ithaca 37.

The Ruger Mini-14 automatic rifle

The Ithaca 37 ‘Stakeout’ pump-action shotgun

in these couple of updates about the specifics of the MORITA build (thanks

– The back
half of the morita shell is actually based on a Muzzelite Bullpup Stock
. You can find these at: http://www.muzzelite.com/products/Muzzelite/MZ-14.htm

– The full-auto
versions of the moritas used a Ruger AC556. You can see the selector
switch at the end of the receiver in some of the close-ups. See the following
link for a picture/stats: http://www.duffysguns.com/Ruger%20AC556.htm

intend to build a functional airsoft replica of the MORITA, constriction details
will be worked out, as we build the first few. At this time.. there is no
‘solution’. This page will be updated with information and data as the first
prototypes are designed and built.

The basic
theory, is that the shell will be built from sheet 5mm metal, that has been
cut, welded and folded to shape. The AEG gut’s will most likely be that of
a FAMAS (with is already a bullpup airsoft product), and the lower shotgun,
will most likely be constructed from a cheap Dong-Sang Ithaca springer. Again,
a lot of this is likely to change, as the project is started.

The cheap solution:

The professional solution:


have a few CAD diagrams in our possesion, which have been downloaded off the
net. These will be placed here if and when we get the original author’s permission.

has kindly given us permission to host copies of his plans
for the MORITA and PulseRifle project (Thanks
can download them by clicking here.

– January 13, 2002:
Are you looking for that perfect shell
to build your MORITA around? Well you can get the resin casts used in the
film here
from ReelClothes.
The cost the MORITA shell is about 500USD, which isn’t that bad, but it is
a tad pricey for a casual project. Thanks go out to Sean
of NEASG for
this update.

Clcik here to go to  ReelClothes
One of the MORITA props up for sale at ReelClothes
(image from and copyright ReelClothes)

Below you’ll find a load of images that I have yet
to sort. Screengrabbed from the UK DVD release of the movie, theses images
will be used for both detail and functional reference.


Military Science Fiction Command Post’
site link)

site with a few images and some usefull information covering various sci-fi
E-Zine May 2001
LazerTag e-zine, with informaion and a picture of their Tag-MORITA
TrooperPX.com TrooperPX:
The Worlds Most Complete Starship Troopers Reference Collection
Troopers Props for sale
site with various props and equipment for sale from the film
GoldenArmour GoldenArmour’s
page for the MORITA
Gun Company
The real-steel
makers of the Ithaca 37 shotgun
The real-steel
makers of the Ruger Mini-14 rifle
Ruger Mini-14 page
A small
page of links to information, parts, and other resources for owners and
fans of the Ruger Mini-14 Rifle.
ReelClothes ReelClothes
have several props and the like for sale, including original and 2nd gen
MORITA shells
Sci-Firearms The
indespensible reference for scifi weaponry, props, and sci-fi airsoft

on this page from the ‘StarShip Troopers‘ DVD are ©2000 Warner
Home Video
The rest is
copyright 2001ArniesAirsoft
arachnids, infantrymen or bugs were harmed in the production of this page.
( My my, we do read the small print don’t we ? )

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