Hi my fellow model builders!
This month's updates are now posted for your enjoyment. I have pretty much been doing a lot of clean up with the port side framework. I'm getting all of the tension rod assemblies in place as well as the port side mark light bars which run along the length of the model. I've also added all of the panel frame details to the sides of each of the panel frames. Everything is pretty much in place and all I have to do now is connect all of the wires and do a lighting test to make sure everything works okay. The only part I didn't detail as of yet is between the top tier 2nd and 3rd panel frames. This is because I will have to cut into the tubing to allow the armature tower to fit in between these panels. I'm a little bit nervous about cutting into these tubes just because I don't want to ruin anything. But this has to be done in order for the ship to be supported inside the dock.
In the meantime, I will be painting up all of the added details that I've put on this last month to match the rest of the dock model. In the updates there are 32 new pics for this month. I've taken more photos to show how the tension rods are added one by one into the structure. It takes about 40 to 45 minutes to complete one panel frame. This is mainly because of all of the small parts I'm using to build this part of the dock. I can't tell you how many times I've wound up dropping parts while trying to put them all in place. I've also been doing some piece counting for the model. There are 9 parts to each of the tension rods. 2 mounting nuts, 2 mounting bolts, 2 washers 2 turnbuckle sleeves and one tension rod. There are 12 tension rods on each panel frame. So just for the tension rod assemblies alone there are 108 pieces per panel frame. 42 panel frames total including the port and starboard frameworks. This equals 4,536 individual pieces just for the panel frames alone. At the end of the entire build I will give you a complete total of all the individual parts needed for this model.
In other areas, I have scratch built some support clamps that are needed to hold the mark lighting rods in place on the outside of the port framework. These clamps were all cemented to the outside of the dock and aligned so that the entire length of the rod would appear straight over the entire length of the dock. The mark light rods are then snapped into the clamps holding them in place. Next I will be doing the wiring for these lights and then do a light test. After everything looks good I can then paint all of these parts to match the dock. I can finally move to get the Enterprise in place. Hope you enjoy all of the pics for this months. As always if you have any comments or questions I'd be happy to hear from you. See you next month! Be safe!
It's good to be back! We just came back from a week long cruise to the BAHAMAS! A much needed and relaxing vaca! Enough to recharge batteries and enthusiasm to get back to the task at hand.
Anyway, I was going to set up the June updates before I left, but I ran out of time, so here we go....
I needed to wait for some other parts for the model so I had to divide my time on working on the gangway/interface/armature and the port side detailing on the panel frames.
I first had to feed all of the wiring through the armature and feed it up to the top of the armature so I could add the gangway and tower details around the wiring. This will hide all of the wiring and make it appear as though the ship is under it's own power. I built the gangway on this version of the model the same way I did it for the 1/350 scale version of the model. I first started at the hull of the saucer section and work my way out to the tower section then build the actual tower section on three sides and detail it. By only building it up on three sides allows me to add any last minute additional wiring that might be needed. When I'm sure I won't need to add anything I can then seal all of the wiring in and paint all of the details. I was also able to add the three hydraulic lines that are seen in the movie. I used an enhanced screen cap to follow how these lines hang on the sides of the gangway.
In other areas I've added the lower tier mark lights as well as the port side mooring tractor beam turrets. So more soldering and wiring were needed. Also, I began working on the tension rod assemblies for the port side panel frames. I started with the mounting nuts then added the washers and bolts then cement the turnbuckles into place. Next I cement only one end of the tension rod into one end of the turnbuckle and leave the other end to slide in and out of the turnbuckle. This helps keep the rods from bending when I assemble the panel frames to the overhead modules when the weight of the structure shifts.
The last pieces I've worked on in the last month are the outside panels that are seen when the Enterprise takes off from the Dock. I just added some small details. I put some c-channel pieces as well as some tanks on either side of the c-channels. I will be adding an LED to each of these panels later on to add some more lighting effects to the outside of the panel frames. Well, now that vacation is over with, it's back to work on all counts! Enjoy the pics in which there are 12 new ones on the Updates for June - 2015 page! See you in a month!
Well, this month I wasn't able to get as far as I would've liked to. I had several things I had to redo on the Enterprise model before I could start the wiring. I needed to add the Hanger bay doors to the back of the ship so they are in the open position. I also added a few more lightis to the hanger bay to enhance their lighting effects. But my primary task was to make sure that I was able to get the Armature mounted into the sauce and also make sure it would hold the ship up without bendig or bouncing too far up and down. The Enterprise does have some weight to it so I wanted to make sure the armature was holding the ship at an even keel. I also needed to start the wiring and have it feed through the armature up into the Drydock and down to the control panel base. This is now easy task as there are many wires to run through the ship. If this was mounted from below on the engineering deck it would a lot easier. But this ship needs to appear to be floating inside the dock and this is the only way to do it.
So I spent most of this last month doing a lot of soldering and wire running. Then after the wires were run thorugh the armature I needed to test that the ligthting circuits were working, then lable all of the wiring and the voltage for it's final connections to the power sources. So, I got the Engineering section wired up as well as most of the upper and lower saucer pieces. I am waiting for a shipment of LEDs to complete the thruster wiring for the Main deflector housing. I was able to get the main deflector dish wired up and working. I have lighting tests pics for some of the ship's lighting. By next month's update I will have the Enterprise resting inside her drydock and then I can add the Port side of the dock to the model. Hang in there gang. It's getting closer to being finished. I have 16 pics int the May Updates page. Check 'em out and enjoy! See you next month.
This months update is quite extensive as far as the work done on the Drydock. To begin, I started by opaque-ing the Tractor emitters Flat Black. This took several coats because of the thinness of the styrene plastic. I had to make sure there would be no light leaks. I then painted the emitters Rust. But reviewing some of the Behind the scenes pics of the Drydock miniature and a few other sources I will be updating that color to a light brown color. I was then able to solder the wiring in place and connect it to the main frame of the Dock. All of the lights are working. I also was able to do a lot of touch-up work on all of the added pieces of styrene especially on the light panels and all of the detailing work around the entire panel frame assembly as well as all of the tension rods and turnbuckle assemblies. They are now a uniform Rust color. In addition to this I've also added the completed mark lighting rails that run along the outsides of the panel frames. These were soldered into their circuits and then painted to match the rest of the dock. The test lighting on this came out really nice!
The next part, or parts I was able to work on were the Cryo-tanks or whatever they're called that run along the bottom of the lower tier of the panel frames. There are five tanks per cluster. I scratch built 5 different kinds of tanks with various smaller tanks attached to them. I then used this as a master for making molds. I needed 120 if these tanks for 2 separate models. I cast all of these in black resin then sprayed them a Light Gray primer. They were then detached from their main sprues and put in a pile on my work bench. Then I randomly selected 5 of these tanks for each cluster. These five tanks were attached to 2 mounting bands which allowed the tanks to form a half circle grouping. I then attached all of these clusters to the 6 separate joints along the bottoms of the lower panel frames. They turned out rather well. After I cemented them in place I did more touch up work on all of the tanks.
Another area I worked on was the work crane and work light turrets. These had to be built by scratch. I had purchased a mini-lathe specifically for this project and now I was finally going to use it. I took two wooden wheels that I purchased from Hobby Lobby and put them on the lathe and was able to create the basic shape for the turrets. The turrets resemble mini Jupiter II's from LIS:TOS. After a nice light sanding they turned out perfect, but I found out that they were a bit too large for the scale, so I bought more of the wooden wheels in a smaller size and re-lathed 2 more pieces. It only took about 20 minutes to get the right shape. I then carved out a notch in one of these wheels. This is for the Boom arms that will extend out to the ship. The other wheel was made for the Gangway Docking Port. There are 2 docking ports on this piece and one on the work crane piece. I wanted to add some lighting effects on these turrets so I cast them I clear resin to all I would have to do is opaque the pieces and scrape of the paint where the lighting effect will need to be seen. The castings turned out very good. I am currently opaqueing them and then painting them a light tan color. There are 2 pieces for each of these turrets, this eliminated the need for me casting piece in a 2 piece mold, which is a lot of extra work. BTW there are 5 turrets for the work cranes and 2 for the work lights. I will alos be adding other details later on including the booms for the cranes and wiring and lighting as well as other small details. Most of this will be scratch built.
Another area I've started on are these 6 panels that run along the outside of the dock. There are 3 on the outside of each middle tier. Only 2 of them are really visible in the Drydock scene when Kirk and Scotty are in the travel pod. The only really clear shot of these panels are from a larger scale miniature that was built for a close up shot when the Enterprise is leaving the dock and the little dude is doing summer-salts as he's waving goodbye to the ship. These parts will also have a small but noticeable lighting effect. I started this by cutting up some very thin clear plastic into squares. I used a behind the scenes photo of this as a reference as to how large these panels will be for this scale model. I have added some masking tape for the parts where the lighting will show through. There is some minor detailing that will be added later on, but this too is turning out very good.
Last but not least, I am also working on connecting the armature to the Enterprise. This armature will connect the Ship to the Dock. There will be a lot of tweaking for this armature because of the weight of the ship. It has to sit in the dock very parallel to the panel frames. So hopefully this will be something to look forward to in next month's update. Otherwise there are 33 new progress pics in the April Updates 2015 page.
As always, enjoy the pics, comments and/or suggestions are always welcome. Take care and I'll see you next month.
As a side note: I do appreciate those of you who visit my site and send comments or questions, but please be aware that if you are not one of my current members and a return e-mail address is not included with your question I have no way to respond to you through this website. I do apologize for that but this is the way this webhost works. If there is a change this feature I will be happy to install it to my site. But, in the meantime PLEASE, PLEASE include your e-mail address if you wish me to respond! Thank you All.
A few site updates, I moved the current pictures from November and any succeeding pics to a new page entitled 1/260 ST:TMP Drydock Part 3. After 100 pictures on a page it becomes too difficult to arrange the pics in any kind of order, hence the new page on the sidebar.
For this month's update I was able to get a lot more wiring done for additional lighting effects. I have 25 new pics in this month update page. On the outsides of the dock there are 2 rails with lights on them that run the entire length of the dock. They are more accent lighting than anything, but they are there. I've also built 2 more rails with lights on them that run along the bottom sides of the dock. These are more visible in the movie. I have also started building the Mooring Tractor Beam emitters which steady the ship while it's inside the dock. There are 4 of these that are seen in the movie and they are located on the bottom of the dock as well. There are also a few more details that need to be built before I actually mount the ship inside the dock. These include 6 outside mini panels (For what they are used for I have no idea, but you can see a great shot of them when the Enterprise leaves Drydock and the little dude is seen doing flips as the ship goes by) and I will be starting some work on the work crane and work light assemblies. These will be far different from the ones I made for the 1/350 scale dock. I will be making a master mold for these crane pieces so I can save some building time. I will also start work on the Gangway docking platform as it needs a lot of detail work on that. This piece might have to be made into casting mold as well. She's starting to come together even more and I'm hoping this will wrap up in the next 3 or 4 months if there are no more delays. Keep checking for the latest updates and I'll see you again in a month or so.
My apologies for the long interval between updates! December was a killer month for me as far as work goes! On top of that my mom had some health issues to deal with and then I was able to welcome 2 new grandson's into the world! Yes, that's a total of 7 grandchildren now! WOW!
That's Michael - 4yrs old, Lily - 4yrs old, Braeden coming up on 4yrs old, Romeo - 2 years old, Robert 1.5 years old, Amren - 2 months old and Dante - also 2 month old. I'm going to need a notebook pretty soon! Everyone is doing fine!
Now on to the matters at hand! As I said December was a "Didn't even look at the model" kinda month, But January was a lot more productive! I needed to get the armature ready for the Enterprise so I can marry both of the models together. I needed to do some major grinding and cutting in order to get the Armature to fit into the saucer section. The curvature of the lower hull became a bit if an issue. I needed to cut out 2 grooves on the bottom part of the armature in order for it to fit into the hull. I also needed to add some more holes into the armature in order to allow the wiring to run through to the Modules and down to the control panel that I will be adding to the model later on.
I also put together the Port side panel frame structure and ran all of the wiring through it so I can add the LEDs to it later on. After I finished this I started putting together all of the LEDs that will be used in all 56 of the light panels including the ones in the Overhead Modules. I also test fitted the Port side Panel frames to the Modules to see how they will look together with the Starboard side. So there was a lot of soldering going on during the month of January and there will be a lot more to come.
In other areas I finally got to the point where I needed the modules to be standing in their upright positions so I can get more of the model assembled so I started working on the display base. We had a couple of 40 degree days out by us so I was able to go into the garage and start working on the base. For the most part it is assembled together as you will see in the update pics for this month. The top of the base however is not permanently attached to the model as of yet until I can get all of the wiring and controls in place.
I've also started working on some additional lighting rails that run along the bottom of the lower tiers of the panel frames. This lighting is much like the ones that are on the bottom side of the Overhead Modules. There are also 4 more rails, 2 on each outside of the middle light panel tiers that will need to be made and mounted to the frames. Coming up will be some work on the mooring tractors on the bottom of the dock as well as some work that will be done on the work light panels and the work cranes. It starting to come together little by little but it's looking good and I feel good about is being accomplished! There are 23 new pics on the FEBRUARY UPDATES page for this month! Hope you enjoy! And I'll see you once again Next Month!
Okay I have the photo glitch problem jury rigged for now, but here's this month's November Updates - 2014
In this month's update I've been working on the part of this model that I've been dreading, but need to complete. The assembly of all of the tension rods with turnbuckle anchors and nuts and bolts. There are 9 pieces per tension rod and there are 2,268 pieces that need to be put together on just the Starboard side of the dock alone. Each piece has to be cemented in place and aligned to each of the panel frames and light panels. Rather than just drilling holes into the Light panels and panel frames and running the tension rods through each of the holes and cementing them in place as I did with the 1/1350 scale PLE Dock My client has requested that the bolts on each of these connection be visible to give greater depth of scale to the final model. Detailing is very important to my client so this once again will slow down the completion of the Drydock. There is one shot of this detail that was visible in ST:TMP when the Enterprise was leaving the dock and the little dude in the space suit was waving good-bye to the ship. I now need to touch up all of the ends of these rods with Rust paint which will blend everything together. The pics show how this detail looks.
Another setback is the light panel lighting effects. After putting some reflective paper into the panels to defuse the light I discovered that this lighting effect would not work at all because you can see the EL wire behind the defusing paper. Bummer. I had to remove all of the EL wire and put in LEDs as I did with the 1/350 scale dock. So I'm now adding reflective tape to the backs of the inside of each light panel and will then have to hard-wire all of the LEDs in place. Not a very easy task at this point at least not with the Starboard side panels. Well, live and learn. We'll see how far I can get with this within the next month or so. December is a very bad month for me to work on this project so there may be very little for the January update to show. But, enjoy the pics. I will try to have them set up on photobucket for now.
That's it for now.
See you in a month.
September has been another busy month for drydock building. I was able to spend a lot of time on the Light Panel frame fronts. I had to cut out all of the plexi-glass pieces to use as clear windows and a 3rd piece of plexi for the graphic decals. For each light panel there are 2 pieces of plexi. That makes 112 pieces for each of the panels. The plexi was then cemented in place. I then had to make all of the decals which amounted to the same number of pieces. There are what I'm calling left and right side decals for each piece. There's a slight variance between each of the decals, so I had to make sure they were all put on the appropriate sides.
I've also spent a great deal of time making the turnbuckle anchors and tension rods. One of my clients requested that this detail be physically bolted to the panels and the frames. So here's how the work load pans out for this month. There are 504 tension rods needed for each drydock. These rods connect from the light panel to the panel frames. I am using styrene rods because they are very light weight. I'm spraying all of these rods "Rust" before I cut them to size. This way there will only be a minimum of touch-up work to do. On each end of these rods will be an anchor with a loop on the end of it. (See pics of this process in the October updates page) There are 2 of these anchors on each of these rods so I need to make 1008 of these. 336 of these anchors will be for the center tiers of the light panel frames. The remaining 672 have to be made with the end loops on a slight angle because of the way the top and bottom tiers are of the panel frames are curved. As of this posting I have the 336 anchor loops finished and will be working on the rest later in the week. The hard part is keeping track of how many of these have been done. The other dock will have just the sleeve part of the anchor loop on them so it will look more like the filming miniature version. Later when I start adding the rods to the model I will be able to touch up the unpainted surfaces.
In other areas... because of how repetitive some of this work is it's nice to break off and work on something else for a while. For the last year and a half I've been contemplating on how I was going to build the work light arrays. On my 1/350 version I had no idea of how I was going to tackle this because of the complexity of these lights. In the end I wound up taking a piece of cardboard that had a mirror like surface on it. I cut it into a hexagon shape, then etched a lot of line into it and drilled holes for where the lights were supposed to be. I then back-lit this piece with 3 LEDs to make the lighting effect. Although I've hear some good suggestions of how and what to use for this array, such as a florescent light cover cut into a hexagon shape, it just did not work out for the scale I needed to build these arrays in. I have found some pictures of these light array panels and they were originally used in the unused TV series version of ST:Phase II drydock as the side panel lights. They have a very complex configuration and I wanted to at least in some way be able to come as close as I could to getting these as accurate as possible. I stumbled on the simplest of solutions. At my local Hobby Lobby I came across a section that has all kinds of beads, glitter and most importantly of all Sequins. They were in various colors and I happened to notice that the silver ones had a reflective quality as that of mirrors or reflectors that are used in lamps and/or flash lights. JACKPOT! They had 3 or 4 different sizes, so I bought a couple of small bags. I notices that even though they are punched out into round shapes, the center of each sequins had a hexagon shape to it. So I lined up 60 sequins of 2 different sizes of each kind of sequins then measured out the overall size of both of them and decided I had a close match for the work light arrays. When lined up properly with the edges of the hexagon they reflect light similar to what is seen in ST:TMP. So I built 4 of these panels 2 for each of the docks.
I cut out a hexagon shape made from sheet styrene, sprayed them FLAT BLACK, then carefully cemented one sequins at a time until all 60 were lined up and in there proper places. Next I drilled out all 60 centers of the sequins so that one LED could fit into each of the holes. It looks great so far and I can't wait to wire them up and do a lighting test.
For the last part of my update: Since I was able to add the Starboard side of the light panels to the overhead modules I wanted to see how one of the Enterprise models looked inside of the dock so I snapped a few pics and put them into this month's update. Hope you like them. MOre updates coming next month! See you then! Have a great month!
Now that I have the majority of all of the details and pieces cast and for the most part painted, I have been able to assemble a lot of these individual pieces together and even start with the lighting process.
This month I received all of the rest of my dry transfers to add all of the letters and numbers to the backs of all of the light panels. They are now complete! After that I started assembling the power nodules to the light panels and then the tanks to the power nodules. I also started adding some mounting nuts for the tension rods on the light panels. I needed to redo them because the originals were not large enough for what I needed. So I had to add 8 of these nuts to each of the panels then later add 10 of these nuts to each of the panel frames. These are now completed.
Any of the missing anchor cones have now been put in place, then I finished putting the horizontal detail pieces then painted all of the details "Rust". This prepared all of these pieces for the next important step of lighting and wiring the panel frames and panel lights.
I have also added the box insert pieces to the overhead modules and cemented them in place. Next was the part that I've been wanting to get to for a very long time. The wiring of the light panels. For my 1/350 scale Drydock I used copper telephone wire and lots of LEDs. It was really a wiring nightmare because of how many connections were needed and later when the model was moved around or slightly shifted some of the panels would go out and then I'd have to find out were the break in the line was and re-solder everything until it worked properly. For this model which is about 1/260 scale, the pieces are a lot larger and easier to work with but I did not want to use LED's because of all of the soldering needed, so I'm, using a new technology for the panels which is becoming very popular for lighted models called EL Wire. This wire can be fed through all of the tubes, be looped around the spurs inside of the panels and then fed through to the next panels and so forth. The LEDs took several days to wire in. The EL wire took me less than 3 hours for one side of light panels.
After I threaded all of the EL Wire through I was then able to connect all of the panel frames together then put on the Vertical detail pieces on the insides of the panel frames. Right now I'm working on the outside of the Starboard frames and adding the Vertical detail strips on there as well.
I'm now beginning the work on the Port side frames and lighting work. After I get this part detailed and wired I will be adding all of the Light Panel Graphics and Front parts of the Light panels. I should also be able to get one of the Enterprise models mounted inside the dock if all goes well. There's still a lot of work to get done but it's getting closer to being finished.
My target date for finishing this is about the end of October-November. But, we'll see. There are 24 New pics in the September updates page. Enjoy!
That's all for this month's update! See you in October!
Also, as a bonus this month I stumbled on to some pretty awesome behind the scenes photos of the original drydock being built and prepared for filming. I posted these pics in the reference photos page. There are 13 new pics starting from Picture #20.
Hope you enjoy these as well.
Okay! Back on track. At least somewhat. Because of the complexity of the Drydock build, you can just imagine how repetitive some of the work can be especially when there are 2 being built at the same time. WOW!
Never again. At least not 2 builds at once. Anyway this month I can report some decent progress. In the past updates, you have seen the overhead modules in their natural molded black color, then the next color went to Italian Brown, but that was never to be the finale color of the modules. In doing research for my original 1/350 scale dock I viewed as many production stills, behind the scenes photos and even the old trading card pics as I could get my hands on and I found what I believe to be the closest color match as possible for the final color of the dock. In many of the stills There appears to be a reddish tinge to the color of the dock. When I took pictures of my 1/350 scale version the colors seemed be quite close. I like that Rust color, so I am using this for the final color of the dock. But I will not be laying it on too thick. I want some of the brown to show through in a subtle way. This would also give it a more used and weathered look.
To start out with the painting I needed to fix almost all of the corner pieces of the modules. This being my first major resin cast project I did not get everything to line up exactly. But with some styrene and super glue I was able to fix all of these parts up. Next I wanted to add in all of the remaining anchor cones so that they could all be sprayed at the exact same time. This would mean less touch-up work later on. The reason I didn't add all of the cones sooner when I was assembling them early on was because I was going to use some of these cones to thread wiring through them for some of the lighting effect. But I now, I've come up with a new way to add the lighting which I will discuss in future updates. So anyway, I fixed all of the loose parts by either re-cementing or replacing them so that everything will be ready for the final paint job. Next I did some more masking of what look to be grill plates on the underside of the modules. I also masked off a lot of the side panels to give a little bit of a variety in color. Then I sprayed the entire model which took me just under an hour to do for each model. The spraying time was mostly taken up by doing all of the anchor cones.
There are some pretty good pics of the paintjob on the AUGUST UPDATES 2014 page.
After all of the masks are removed you can see the different colors on the underside and sides of the modules.
I was also able to start adding the starboard side panel frames to one of the models. This took some doing because I needed to added the support rods through the modules. After I had originally built each panel I had to align them with their proper positions mark all of the drill holes off one at a time to make sure all of these pieces would fit properly later on when they would be connected to the modules. To make sure I didn't mess up their order I needed to number all of the tiers so that they could be placed back into their original positions.
The Starboard frames are now anchored to the modules but they still need some tweaking. To finish all of that though I need to add in the lighting wires for the light panels. After they are all in place I can then make sure everything is squared up and then I can add the vertical detail pieces on the inside and the outsides of the frames. Once I get this done I can actually mount the Refit Enterprise into it's final resting place inside the Drydock. I really hope I can get to that part very soon! I've been looking forward to that very much!
Well, thanks for being patient on this build. I really needed the break last month. Hang in there. More is on it's way! See you next month!
Although I have done a bit of work on the Dock this past month, it has been nothing of a substantial amount worth posting pics for. I have done some sanding and painting for the detail pieces for the frames but I already have pics of those posted for the previous updates. I was on vacation for a couple of weeks and last week our water heater went out so I needed to get that repaired. For this month I will be starting the assembly and painting of the light panel framework. Sorry about the lack of progress for June, but we all need a little break now and then, right? Right. Thank you for your understanding. I'll see you next month!
Hello Fellow Model Builders!
Although I don't have a lot of update pics for you this month, I have done I good chunk of painting details onto many, many pieces. The square box insert pieces for the overhead modules have been airbrushed to their final color and the lighting slits have been cut into each of these pieces. I have a good pic of one of these as a test fitting pic in the June Updates page.
Another chunk of the work load for this month was hand painting some of the details for the Light Panel Power nodules. There are 4 different colors on each of these pieces now and there are 84 of these pieces for each drydock model that needed to be painted. I have also been hand painting some of the details on the end caps of the tanks that will later be cemented to the power nodules. IT's easier to cast them in groups of 4 and paint them while they are still on the sprue pieces. When they are finished I can just snap the tanks off and then cement them onto the nodules. I'll have some pics of that in next month's update.
As long as I had my airbrush out I started to paint some of the vertical detail pieces for the light panel frames. I first had to sand down the back parts of these pieces so that they are now pliable enough and can now be curved with some amount of ease when they are put onto the panel frames.
That's what I have been doing for the most part for this month. But I also figured out how many more of each of these pieces that I need to finish the model and have been doing a lot more resin casting. By next update I should have all of the needed pieces cast and then painted and THEN I can get to work assembling all of the parts.
In the next month I will also be working on the hanger for the overhead modules. I know I started that a few updates back, but I really needed to concentrate on getting all of these detail parts cast and painted. You should start to see the beginnings of the work crane and work light modules and booms in the coming months.
Thanks for being patient with this build. I know it's taking a while to get anywhere, but soon I can assemble everything and then we will start to see some awesome results. Keep checking for updates and I'll see you next month!
This month I've spent quite a bit of time casting many different pieces for the Light Panels as well the panel frames. The focus was mainly on the Power Nodules that are seen on either side of the tops of each of the side light panels. I needed to cast these parts in two different pieces because of the complexity of each part. There are 84 nodules on each of the docks so I had to cast 84 nodules as well as 84 of the clamp pieces.
There are also 2 tanks that are on each of the nodules that I needed to build from scratch. There are 168 of these needed per dock, so I made castings of those and painted some of them light gray. The end pieces on all of the tanks will be hand painted neutral gray. When the Nodules are finally painted I can then cement all of the tanks to the Nodules. Whew! A lot of work in the coming months.
Other parts that needed to be cast were the box like recesses that are seen underneath the overhead modules. There are 7 per module. They were challenging for me to cast because of how thin the walls are. Added to that was also a slit on the front and back parts of these pieces that are used for allowing light to shine through for additional effects. I never knew these slits were on the model until I was able to see the Drydock Miniature in person. Be assured they are there, they just never had any screen-time in the movie.
In other updates you should know that despite all of the obvious details seen on the Overhead modules there is also an abundant amount of details that follow the inside and outside parts of all of the framework for the side panel frames. I made up 8 different versions of the detailing and made molds of them. Now when I add them as details to the dock I can use them at random and also flip them upside down so they will appear as even more details. These will be used for the horizontal parts of the framework. I also made up 3 additional detail pieces for the vertical parts of the framework which also can be flipped over for different details. I found it was faster to use more that enough resin so that I can pull all of these pieces out of the mold at the same time, then use a belt sander to get rid of all of the excess resin and thin out the strips. You'll see what I mean in the May Updates page.
I have been able to apply the horizontal strips of details to the panel frames where the anchors hold the frames together. Eventually I will be able to start painting the frames and assembling them to the modules.
In The last week or so I have started painting the Power nodules. I applied the first color which is Intermediate blue and I've started masking off the nodules to add the second color which will be Rust. Later I will hand paint some of the smaller details with a small brush. I was hoping to get at least one of these done for this month's update but I just couldn't get that much done. Sorry! I tried. When I get one of them painted up I'll post ASAP. And last but not least I've begun casting pieces for the hanger bay for the overhead module. I'll have some pics for that next update. There are 25 new pics in the May Updates page! Enjoy! and I'll see you next month!
Welcome to the April update! This month I have been able to get somewhat back on track. The weather has warmed up enough for me to go back into my garage to do some of the necessary work that can't be done inside our house.
I have 23 New Pics in the April Updates. Here are the details:
I have finally received the armatures for the models that will be used to marry the Enterprise models to the docks. They are made of 1/4" hollow tube and are quite sturdy. I had them welded together in a specific manner so that they will be hidden as best as possible inside the dock and the ship giving the illusion that the ship is floating inside the dock.
All of the copper tubes that I cut the holes into have been placed inside the panel frames. These will be used to support the light panels as well as allow me to run the lighting effects through each of the tubes.
I have also started painting the light panels their respective colors. This took about a week to do. I was able to finish those and start work on the dry-transfer numbers and letter that are on each of the panels. In ST:TMP the dock was heavily decaled only on the side that was visible on the screen. The side unseen or port side has decaling but not to the extent of what Row "E" of the panels has. As I have more time I will be adding more of the decals to each of the panels since this will be a full model of the dock. The bummer about the dry-transfers is that they only give you so much of certain letters and/or numbers. For instance many of the panels are numbered in the 30's and 70's. Guess which numbers they give you the least amount of? Yeh... 3's and 7's so I have to order many many sheets of the transfers and then try to use the other numbers just so I don't waste too many of the decals. But.... hey.... that's the life of a model builder, huh? Anyway I think Row "E" which is seen on the screen turned out rather nice.
Now, another feature of the Light panels is seen on the upper right and left side of each of the panels. Since I don't know what they really are I am going to call them the power nodules for the light panels. I used reference pictures from the movie as well as some pics I shot of the Filming Miniature to scratch build a highly detailed master so that I can cast all of these pieces rather than build them all individually. Just a side note, it took me about 4 hours total to create just one of these from scratch. The only thing left that I need to do for these pieces is build the 2 tanks or bottles that are seen on the top and bottom of the light panel support poles. These will be cast separate from the nodule pieces as well as a clamp-like piece that connects these nodules to the light panels. I should have them done by the next update.
Last but not least I am taking some new measurements for some interior sections of the dock can be seen from the outside. I am going to do what I did for my 1/350 scale dock and that is add a large interior Hanger bay that can be seen by looking into the Aft End of the dock though the hanger doors. I have a lot more room to work with on this dock and I purposely made the support frame so this dock can be a lot larger than the 1/350 version. You will be able to see many Shuttles, work bees, Shuttle pods, cargo containers and other details. This should help give a great depth of scale to the model and how large it would be in real life.
Hopefully by next month's update I will have some of the panel frames painted up and ready to be connected to the Overhead modules. Hopefully there will be no Hang-ups or snags. The weather is getting better, slowly but surely. This will make things go a lot faster. 'Til then, see you next month!
Hi everyone! It's been a very very cold winter here in Illinois this year and unfortunately that is putting me behind on my drydock build a bit. Most of my shop is in my garage and it is extremely difficult to work on certain things when its 0 deg. or colder out there. But I've managed to do some smaller work on the project and was able to get some things done.
In this update I have had a change in some of the detailing work that needs to be done on one of the docks. It was requested that I put some more detail into parts of the dock specifically around the light panels and panel frames. My client wants some turnbuckles added to the panels as was seen in one of the close up models in ST:TMP. So I've ordered s few special tools that I do not have, such as a small pen sized screwdriver and a pin vise adjustable chuck so that I can drill out some 700+ holes in the panel frames and light panels using a 1mm drill bit. This is so I can add some turnbuckle anchors for the tension rods. These will all be connected to the light panels and there frames vial the rods and some very tine screws and nuts. I think I'm also going to need a larger magnifying glass as well.
In the March updates I have pics of how I did this. It takes a lot more time whereas the 1/350 model I just drilled the holes into the frames and panels and then cemented the tension rods into place and then I was done. Not so easy this time but I think it will be worth the effort.
I've also been busy reviewing specific details that need to be done by viewing the drydock scene in ST:TMP. One thing that I really noticed this time is that there are 2 different colors seen on all of the light panels. When they filmed the miniature they used a lot of lighting to get the shots they needed and that appears to have washed out the color differences on the panels to a certain degree. Comparing what's on the screen to Adam Schneider's refurbished Drydock model It's easier to see the differences now and what I need to do. So the panels will need to be sprayed no less than 2 different colors. I've been ordering the paints that I need for this part of the job. There is also a tremendous amount of detail between each of the panel frames and just about all sides of each of the frames, so I will be making mold masters of specific details so I can add them in before I start spraying the entire model.
The dry transfers I ordered have some in so when I finish the panels I can start adding on their specific numbers.
I've been asked where I get some of my material for the detailing of this model. I have a lot of reference materials including pictures of the actual miniature and over the years I have found some very rare behind the scenes photos from when they filmed the movie. I've included those in the March update Page for those of you who are interested. Well that's it for now. See you next month.
Greetings Fellow Modelers!
I have a few updates this month! Number one is a SITE update. I moved all of the DeBoers Enterprise, Reliant and the latest Drydock pictures that were in the Members' Gallery under individual albums into their respective Pages which can now be viewed in their entirety on the sidebar pages seen to the left side of the screen. They were all painstakingly numbered, put into the proper order and moved into the sidebar pages so members and visitors won't have to look all over the Members Gallery to find each of the projects updates.
I will leave the latest updates on the sidebar as "UPDATES" for two months and then they will be added to the proper page on the sidebar. I've also updated some of the page names in order to make it easier for visitors to keep track of certain projects. I've had a few visitors check the 1/350 scale Drydock page thinking it was the current Drydock Build. So, the Current Drydock Build is now the 1/260 ST:TMP Drydock Page. I hope this helps everyone viewing the site! Thanks for your comments and concerns!
For the 1/260 Drydock Updates, I have added the latest progress pics in the February updates page. I've been able to sand down the steel frames to prepare them for spraying. They will be sprayed Flat Black to hide the fact that they are supporting the models. I put a couple of pics to show how the frame can be mounted to a wall for display. For the rest of this month's update I had to cut holes into the overhead module side panels to allow the support tubes to slide through. Then I was able to bolt the module frames to the tubes so they are now permanently anchored to the frame. I've also started adding the anchor cone pieces to the center sections of the modules. These have to be done one at a time to make sure the anchors line up with the holes on the modules. There are 70 of these total on each of the Drydocks.
I've also ordered some Dry-Transfer Lettering that will later be used to mark all of the light panels according to ST:TMP flyby scene. During the month of February I will be drilling the tension rod holes for all of the light panels and their frames and then mounting all of the panel frames to the Port side or rear Modules. If I can get all of this in place I will be able to start threading the EL Wire for the lighting effects. Take care for now and I'll see you next month!
Time to start another year. Welcome to the 2014 workshop! Although I was not able to accomplish much during the month of December (Thank you very much Amazon.com) I was able to do a little work on the Steel frames for the Drydock model. I needed to finish drilling out all of the necessary holes for mounting the model and I am currently working on some steel braces to keep the model level. The model will way about 35 to 40 lbs when finished so there might be some sagging because of it's weight. After everything is drilled out I will be sanding the frames down and spraying them FLat Black. I will be using Rust-o-leum for this to prevent the steel from oxidizing. Then I can start mounting the Starboard side panel frames and add the light panels and begin threading the lighting effects through all of the tubing at least on that side of the dock. I am still waiting for the Armature for the Enterprise to be finished so I can begin adding this to the dock. I will be working on a few other details such as the turnbuckles for the tension rods on the light panels. I don't really have any significant pictures to post this month in the building department, but I was able to add a few more model kits to the future builds page.
I have purchased 2 new model kits that I've been wanting to build for quite some time. Both are from 2001: A Space Odyssey. One of them is a 32" Discovery 1 Model which is 1/144 scale. There are 84 pieces this kit, but because it is a resin cast kit there are many flaws in many of the pieces. Many of these flaws are outlined in the Discover 1 photo album in the Members Photo Gallery section.
The 2nd model kit I bought was also a resin kit. The is the EVA POD also from 2001: A Space Odyssey. This kit is a 1/32 scale resin kit and is very highly detailed and very accurate to the movie version. I also plan on building 2 more of these pods so that I can build another model that I've always wanted to do and that is a 1/32 scale Discovery model with working Pod Bay doors and launch pads. 1/32 scale will make the Discovery roughly 10.5 ft. in length. This is just a rough estimate in it's length. It will be a display model and hopefully I can get it to a few hobby shows when it's finished. I did however buy the 1/144 scale kit mainly for a reference model for when I actually start working on that project. That's in the future though. Well, that's all I have for this month. Sorry about the lack of progress pics for December, but that is my busiest month of the year for my secular job.
BTW all of the update pages that were on the left sidebar for the year 2013, with the exception of November and December, can still be viewed in the Member's Photo Gallery page. This was done to make room for the 2014 updates. See you next month!
Well, here we are! Another month goes by and we are already into December.
I have 10 new pics for your viewing the DECEMBER UPDATES - 2013 page on the left sidebar menu. I've spent the good majority of November working just on the panel frames. The hole alignments have to be pretty precise so it takes quite a bit of time to get everything just right. For each of the sides, both port and starboard, I could only fully assemble five panel frames each with all three tiers. The reason being that the last to panels on the fronts and rears of each side on all three tiers need to be left unsoldered together so that I can thread the lighting effects through the end sections and through the tubing of each tier and to each light panel.
Did you get all of that? Well, if you didn't just wait for the wiring update and you'll see what I'm talking about. But so far, everything is fitting in place and all of the tiers seem very sturdy and will be able to support their own weight as they will be freely hanging from the sides of the overhead module. There should be no supporting rods like I needed with the 1/350 drydock model for this build.
In other news, which in this case is GOOD news, I was able to get the Drydock's steel frames back from the welder this week. They are built very similar to the 1/350 scale version except that I am not using copper piping. These frames are made from steel to support the weight of both the dock and the DeBoers Model. I will now be making the necessary holes in the overhead modules to anchor them to the steel frame. After this is done I will be drilling out all of the holes needed in the support frame to bolt the modules to it as well as holes for casters that will be used to move this large model around to be worked on. I have made this frame so that the lower section or Dolly can be removed so the model can be hung on a wall of my client so desires. Anyway, after the holes are all drilled out I will be sanding the entire frame(s) down and spraying the entire assembly with Rustoleum to prevent any more oxidation on the metal.
December is usually an unfruitful month for me as far as work on the models goes. Our company gets quite overwhelmed with work during this month, so the January update might be a little lean with pictures, but we'll see how everything goes. Well, that's my update for this month!
Hope everyone enjoys the pics! As always, be safe and happy modeling and I will see you in January! Take care,
I apologize for the long intervals between updates, but for October all I did was a lot of drilling and aligning and drilling and aligning and..... well, you get the point. So, I thought I would wait an extra month so you can at least see some progress with the dock.
Because using metal in model construction is not a forgiving as with plastics, one has to be more precise with the drilling and bending of tubing and other pieces, so yes, it does take a little longer to get things done, but I'll tell you, in this case at least it will be worth the wait.
In this month's update I've finally been able to test fit some of the panel frames with the main modules. As I said In other updates I needed to wait for some parts to come that were back ordered. The back ordering occurs because of the quantity of items that I need for these projects. I've had to order 164 copper tubes, about 56 or so threaded rods and a couple hundred dome and regular nuts and so forth. I've had to cut a lot of these items to length and make sure they fir properly into their respective pieces. This is definitely a take-your-time and do-it-right-the-first-time projects(s).
Other than the panels frames, there will be very little to solder together. Following the design of ST:TMP filming miniature there will be a lot of screws, nuts and bolts holding this baby together. If you watch all of the drydock scenes including the Enterprise leaves drydock you will see a lot of these details right on the screen.
But anyway, this isn't a just drill it and put it together project. This updates I've started by adding the anchor cone pieces to the outside parts of the overhead module, then I have to take each panel frame individually make sure that each of the holes both on the module side as well as on the side and bottom frames will line up. I've started on the top tier of frames on only one of the module pieces. Now that I know what to do I can get the other tiers lined up and in place. With all of the threaded rods and dome nuts in place I was very pleased to find that the panel frames are able to support their own weight so when all of the pieces are finally in place I will not need additional supporting rods to hold everything up as I did with the 1/350 PLE drydock. This is also something that TMP dock was able to do.
All the pics in this month's update are pretty much test-fitting pictures to make sure everything lines up correctly. I will not be able to permanently weld everything together until I can get the wiring in place for the light panels and other effects. There are 19 new pics in the November Updates tab (Available on the home page NOV. 1 for now go to the Members Gallery page or click on one of the recent photos to the right of this page)
By next update I hope to have the tiers finished on at least one of the modules. We'll see how it goes. I will try to get as much done as possible in the next month because December is a very bad month for me secular jobwise, so I hope you enjoy the new progress pics and hope to hear from you. All comments positive and negative are welcome!
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Talk to you next month! Take care and Happy Modeling!