A Cylon fighter ship, known as a Raider. Designed by Ralph McQuarrie, the great cinema illustrator and designer, the Cylon Raider is designed to evoke the "evil flying saucer" look of 20th century cinema. McQuarrie said the Cylon ships should be sleek, curved, disc-like.
To get away from the sleek look of "Star Trek" and imitate the more industrial look of "Star Wars", special effects supervisor John Dykstra took existing model kits for ships, cars, boats, etc. and created many of the manifolds, guns, pipes, engines, and other exterior items on the Cylon Base Stars and the Cylon Raiders. This is known as "kit-breaking", and is a cheap way of creating these kind of effects on minatures.