25 January 2017

U.S.S. Enterprise Refit Restoration, Part 3

Still in drydock.

As mentioned in Part 1, I began restoration of this model (which I built in 1992) to have it completed for Star Trek's 50th anniversary on September 8...of 2016. I regret that I let this project slip past that date with still lots of work to do, and this post's a very late update of where I left it in late summer, 2016.

Adding to my regret is a little bit of guilt that I'm currently hard at work on an enemy ship! I received a Romulan Bird of Prey kit in a Secret Santa situation just before Christmas and I've been making some good progress on updating that ship to near-movie-era stylings via kit bashing and scratch building. I haven't abandoned the big E, but it does take up more space and I'm sorta biding my time until I figure out airbrushing, since I might prefer to paint the 1701 that way instead of using the rattle cans I've purchased for the main colour.

Clamped.

In my last update, I had done all the sanding I was going to bear and had done a bit of gap-filling and sanding of that. The saucer section needed a bit of tightening up to make the join cleaner, hence the glue and clamps. This was about all I could do at this point, knowing that the first application of primer would reveal anything else that needed work.

Primered.

The primer showed me that my sanding of the brick-like pattern all over the ship worked out pretty well and left a hint of panel lines (not the more accurate Aztec pattern, but I didn't want to get into that for this kit).

Gaps revealed!

Of course, as usual, the primer revealed some gaps here and there that still needed work. This is one of the warp nacelles.

Nastiness revealed!

My attempt at filling the gap where the impulse engines join the saucer was pretty rough. More sanding cleaned that up.

Close.

Another part of the nacelle looking okay but still needing work.

Still needs work here.

This is the bottom of the engineering hull and that notch at top right is the square hole where the original base would fit into the model for display (seen better in the photo below; I'm replacing the old base with a brass rod, for strength and stability). No one will see the underside of the ship, but these pits need to be filled, anyway.

Something new.

For the second round of gap-filling I decided to get some Tamiya Putty and see how that worked compared to the Bondo I'd previously used in this and other builds. I like it! I don't mind the smell of Bondo, but it gets intense after a while, even after it's cured, so this is a good alternative, if not a replacement.

Re-sanded.

And this is the condition the mighty Enterprise is in today: still in drydock, needing another shot of primer, needing assembly and paint and decals...needing more love that I've given her of late.

Meanwhile, the lights for my Romulan ship just came in today and I'll be narrowing down my plans for their installation right after I post this entry...






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