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!
For those of you visiting for the first time, please sign up as a member and be the first to receive notice of any updates on my site.
Talk to you next month! Take care and Happy Modeling!
Hi Everyone. I finally got my PC back and all repaired so now I can add the picture updates for the last couple of months. There are 15 new pics in the September Updates page this month.
I've mainly been working on the panel frames, the anchor assembles that are seen between the panel frames and I've been casting hundreds of pieces so that I can start the assembly of all of these pieces. The castings include 980 of the anchor cones for both docks, all of the front light panel frames are now cast for both docks, and I have all but nine of the 84 back light panels finished as of this posting. I've had to sand down the bottoms of the cones as well as drill out the holes for all of the rods to fit through. The fronts and backs of all of the light panels is up next. I've had to wait on some suppliers for some more of the frame tubing and a few other parts as well. But I have been assembling the anchors together. I have 33 of them done so far. There are 107 more to do.
After these are finished I can start drilling out the holes for the tension rods on the light panels, and do some of the pre painting work to get everything ready for final assembly.
A lot of work ahead, but I'm getting closer to finishing. Keep checking for updates. Thanks for being patient while my computer was down.
See you next month.
Hi Everyone, I just wanted to let you know there will be small a delay in posting Update Pics for this month. I have some issues with my PC at the moment and will be sending it in for repairs this week. My apologies, but here's what has been happening for the last few months.
Most of the work being done for now is casting parts for the Drydock. Those little cone shaped anchor pieces that are seen in between each of the top and bottom sections of the panel frames and between the frames and the overhead modules. There are 490 of these per dock to be cast. These have been finished as of last Wednesday August 28. I made 60 individual molds to get the job done a little faster. Now I need to drill out some of these pieces plus do a little sanding to make the bottoms flat.
In areas work I've been working on the panel frames. The straight side panes are completed for one of the docks and I have all of the curved pieces ready for assembly. These are difficult to do because they all have to be curved exactly the same otherwise the frames will not align properly, I'll have some pics of this procedure as soon as I get my PC back. I've also had to remake some of my molds for the outside light panel pieces. Due to the complexity of the actual piece and the fact that I'm using a two piece mold I've been having a lot of problems with small air-bubbles ruining the side walls. However, I've come up with a solution that is working so far. I will be working on getting at least one complete set of these finished by the end of this week. I also have a complete set of front light panel pieces finished for one of the docks and will be working on the next set starting this week. The casting of these pieces in particular is time consuming unfortunately. They are very unusual pieces and evacuating the air completely is what is costing the most time. Once all of these pieces are cast the assembly process will go quickly. I am waiting for funding on one of the docks to move ahead with the metal work, but things are coming along. I Hope to have some new pics posted soon, so hang in there. Once again, I Apologize for any delays. Talk to you next update.
Hi Everyone, Please stand by for the August updates. We are experiencing some uploading issues, they should be resolved shortly. Keep Checking.
This month has been a little frustrating as far as getting a lot of work done on the modules. I had a hard time finding some specific sized sheet metal screws for mounting some of the side walls. I was finally able to find what I needed and get going on the build again. I also needed to make a few new molds for some of the cast parts, mainly the outer light panel frames. I finally figured out what the problem was and was able to correct it. A word to those who are new to casting parts that have some undercuts to the parts: Make sure you use a vacuum chamber to de-gas everything even if the label says you don't need to. I've found that for de-gassing a silicon mold for about 10 minutes has made the smoothest molds for my casting purposes. It works! Believe me!
I've also had to figure out a way to make a new mold for the backs of the light panels. Although the details on the front parts of the molds came out great, I kept having problems with top edges of the sides where the front panel frame would eventually connect with it. Since this needed to be a two piece mold I was not able to evacuate all of the air bubbles even with the chamber and additional vent holes in the molds. So I decided to add a piece of styrene to the insides of the side wall frames. This would allow any bubbles to get caught in this area and then I can sand all of the excess down to where it needs to be and it will look a lot better than the other way I was trying it. Since I've never attempted any casting project of this magnitude with hollowed out parts it's all been trial and error.
On my 1/350 scale dock I didn't fully think through the top part of the modules. As I've stated before, I had never thought I would be selling that model much less building 2 larger drydocks. But the 1/350 scale version was a reminder of what I needed to do to simplify and correct some problem areas on these new ones. On the 1/350 to panels I had put some hinged access panels on the topside. I could then flip them open to fix any wiring problems. Because I made the entire model from .080 sheet styrene I found that it was not strong enough to remain squared and level when additional weight was added. Parts of the modules started to sag ever so slightly, but enough to not allow the hinged panels to close over the tops completely flat. Hence: Light leaks. This was repaired when I gave the model a facelift and corrected many of those flaws.
With this build I am using Steel and Aluminum framework as well as a much thicker module panels made from as strong resin. These modules are very sturdy and they weigh much more than the sheet styrene version.
In this month's update I worked on making the top panels of the module removable rather than hinged. I put guide screws on the insides of the wall panels, then I took some angle aluminum and cut notches into them so that the angle aluminum will slide onto the screws in the side walls. I will now be fastening the angle aluminum to the top panels from the inside. When the panels are in place they will fit into a groove that runs around the entire topside of the side walls. This will make the top panels fit snug onto the side walls and the lip that the top panels sit on will help block out any light leaks. I'd say I thought this one out a little better for this build and any other I might build in the future.
In other updates, I've added all of the front light panel frames to the lower modules so that I can begin the painting process. Although I do like the paint I used on the 1/350 scale build which was Model Master "Rust" color, I want to try an match the color a little better to the original color seen in ST:TMP. I will let you decide what you think about the new color. The pics will be in the Update by June 4th.
See you next update!
The last month has been very productive, mainly with some massive amounts of resin casting. Since there are 2 docks being built, here are the numbers for completed casting as of this update: All 28 of the lower module panels are now cast, the 28 upper panels are finished as well. The 8 front and rear panels are finished. I've been able to cast 36 of the 56 side panels. There are 112 light panel fronts for the sides and overhead modules, so far I have 29 of those done. There are 84 rear light panel pieces and so far I've been able to do 9 of them. These take a little longer because they made with a 2 piece mold. All the other pieces are one piece mold. I've been going through a lot of resin as well. I've used 3 gallons each of Part A and Part B and I'll be ordering another 2 gallons for the rest of the parts that need to be cast.
For the rest of the work done this month I've been sanding off the excess resin from the larger pieces. I've purchased some aluminum c-channel for the framework to support all of the panel pieces. I've also been buying some steel c-channel so I can get the framework built for the model support armature and I've been looking into the metal tubing for the light panel frames that will be worked on a little ways down the road. In the meantime, I've been drilling out the mounting holes to start assembling everything. As of this update I was able to assemble at least one of the modules completely. There are some great pictures of how this looks in the MAY UPDATES page. There are 27 new pics for this update. There is still a lot of casting to do so I'll be quite busy for the next month. I can't wait to get started on the painting, but I need to get these modules finished first.
So let me know what you think of the pics. and I'll have more next month!
See you then,
I have several pics in this month's update which I think are very awesome. At least for me. Continuing on with the drydock build I was able to make some molds for both the fronts and backs of the light panels. I also made a few test casts to see if they would turn out the way I wanted. I found a few things I wanted to improve on with both of the molds. I want to be able to add the lighting effects without having to add any extra parts or drill any additional holes. I'm really trying to think this build all the way through, guys. So I'll take the extra time needed so if I every build additional drydocks I will have everything in place. I've been trying to learn from my past Drydock Build which took about a year and a half to build entirely from scratch. I really never dreamed I would build another dock much less a larger version of it. But I did learn a really valuable lesson from that experience and yes, "CASTING" is going to be the way to go for a highly detailed model like these.
In other areas I've also finished making the master for the underneath of the overhead modules. I was able to do a lot of kit bashing for the detailing work. I tried to follow the basic patterns on the original filming miniature as close as possible. I tried to find pieces that resembled what was on TMP Dock. I was able to make a single piece mold for this part. I then tried casting this piece and the results were fantastic. At this posting I was able to cast 14 of the panels for one of the Docks. As I brought out in my last month's update I am casting all of the parts in Black resin. This will reduce light leaks as well as the need for spraying all of the parts Flat Black. I have several pics posted of these panels. Check them out.
Along with the bottom panels I have also finished the master for the side walls of the Modules and have begun work on the front right and front left pieces where the landing bays are. I should have these pieces completely detailed as well as molds for casting the pieces. So check out the new pics in the April Updates Page and let me know what you think. Next Month's update should be awesome as well. See you then!
Happy modeling, Mark
Hi Everyone! Welcome to the March Updates!
I don't want to alarm anyone, but I have started working on a new project. Actually its part of the DeBoers builds, but it is a new project. I think I needed a bit of a break from the constantly working on the Enterprise models and am now going for a little bit of a change of pace. This will help me recharge my batteries so that I can finish up the Enterprise and Reliant builds.
For this months update I've added a new page for you to enjoy. I am starting on the New Larger Scale ST:TMP DRYDOCK made to fit the DeBoers Scale Enterprise. Right now I have most of the model blueprinted for the sections that I need for reference for when I actually start construction.
I will have a serious advantage with this build in that I was able to go see the original DRYDOCK model in person. From this I was able to make hundreds of notations and many reference pictures of this incredible miniature. On my first Drydock build I had only ST:TMP DVD as a reference and whatever photos that were floating around on the internet at the time. But now I can be as accurate as possible with this new scale. The only thing I would like to point out though is please, please do not ask me to post any of the pics that I took of the miniature. I was allowed in good faith to take the pics that I did as long as I would not publish them. So, please be considerate of this request. There will be no further discussion of this issue and private requests will be deleted. Thank you for respecting this wish.
The only thing I can assure you of is that what you see in this build will be a very accurate representation of the model. With that in mind, this last month I was able to start construction of a MASTER of one of the light panels. This will be used for mold making and YES, this time I will be casting the majority of the parts for this build. This should cut down the build time dramatically. I am going to be casting the parts in black resin to reduce the need to opaque the pieces for light leaks. I will also be trying a new kind of lighting that will reduce the need for soldering, LEDs and exposed wiring and excessive heat build up.
I have also been asked to work out some moldings and castings for another 1/350 scale drydock build. These updates will be included on the DRYDOCK LARGE SCALE page. By the next update I am hopeful to have some of the moldings done and a few of the castings ready for pics.
In the Updates for March I just have one pic of the Enterprise models in their cradle docks. These cradles make it much easier to not only move the models, but also to work on them. Shoulda finished these months ago but..... busy. Anyway, on the drydock page I have several drawings of the model-to-be's basic designs and some pics of the light panel Master. I will have more of the details added on by the next update. See you then,
For this month's update I've spent much of the time adding all of the clear plastic for all of the windows and viewports, plus I'm adding the interior lighting for the Officer's lounge which, by the way is turning out fabulous. There are some great pictures of this lighting in the UPDATES FOR FEBRUARY page. Check them out.
In other areas I have had to scratch build and paint all of the interiors for the open hatch version of the Enterprise that will be in the Drydock. I wanted these hatches to be able to open and close, unlike the ones I made for the PLE version which always stayed open. I was originally going to make all of the hardware out of copper plating and tubing, but the problem I ran into was how to connect the hardware to the hatch doors without it looking like it was cemented together. I decided to scrap that idea and use styrene parts instead of copper so there would be less mess. It worked out better this way. I have 14 new pics in this month's updates.
For the next update I will be adding some updates for the plans for my new Drydock Builds. I've started blueprints for this build so that I can get the proper scale of this build to match up with the DeBoers Scale Enterprise. I'm estimating the length of this new version to be about 56". This larger scale will be good for adding even more details for this build. That and the fact that I was able to see the original Filming Miniature in person and I will be able to work off of that model to make some corrections and changes so that these models will be even more accurate to ST:TMP filming miniature.
That's it for now. Check out the pics, let me know what you think and I'll see you next month.
Hi Everyone! Sorry this update took so long to get uploaded. December was a very rough month for my secular work so very little was done on Reliant or Enterprise x 3. I have 22 new pics in the Updates for January page
For Enterprise updates:
I needed to get all of the viewport glass in place as well as the wiring and lighting for some of the spot lights and the warp engines in place before I could put the Hanger and Botany deck pieces in place. So I added the clear pieces into the hull first. This included the Botany Deck Viewports.
I was then able to add the exterior lighting on the other two engineering hulls and get all of the spot lights aimed to their proper locations. There are 7 Spots on each of the hulls. To insert them and secure them in place as well as aim them took about 2 - 3 hours each. No easy task because of the limited amount of room to work in with each of these models. In the November update I was able to get the first model done, but I learned from that one what NOT to do on the other 2. With the polar Lights Enterprise you can work on one half of the hull at a time, then assemble the 2 halves together. With the DeBoers, the hull is already one piece so you have to try to get your hands into that limited space. So it is very time consuming.
I was also able to finally put the saucers back on so all of the ships are basically assembled. I also added all of the upper and lower saucer spot lights and they are all in place. I was able to get one of the saucer Interior lighting in place this month. I'm using some 4" fluorescent tubes that run off of ballasts and require 12v. to operate. I just have 2 more saucers to put the lighting into, but I do have a good pic of the lighting tests with these fluorescent mini lights on. There are also a couple pics with the warp engines on. By the next update I should have all of the lighting done in the saucers as well as the torpedo launcher effect and other lighting effects such as the impulse engine effect. I am looking forward to sealing up this ships and getting ready for the next phase of 2 of these builds.
In this update I was able to add the LED spot lights on both the upper and lower parts of the saucer. All of the LEDs are now in place, I'm just waiting for some parts to come on for the flashing and strobe light effects. I've also been able to add the interior lighting to the saucer and main body of the hull. There are (8) 4" tubes and (4) 8" tubes being used to light the ship up. This does not include the (2) 4" and (2) 8" tubes that are in the nacells. They all run off of ballasts, 1 ballast for every 2 lamps. I have a nice lighting test shot of Reliant with these lamps on. I also focused in on the landing bay lighting which came out very nicely. I still need to add the flashing and strobe circuits to this model for the lighting effects, but I'm waiting on a few parts before I can add those in. In the meantime I will be working on the Impulse engine lighting effects as well as some additional lighting that is needed around the aft end of the ship including around the landing bay doors.
That's all for this months update. We'll see you next month.
HI Everyone! And Welcome to the next year of model building. I have made room on my home page for the latest updates on my projects. The sidebar has been cleared of last years updates pages, but all of these updates are still visible in the MEMBERS PHOTO GALLERY. To see them just click on that page on the sidebar and all of the updates will be under the DeBoers Enterprise Photo Album. My latest updates on my current projects will be added soon, so keep checking. Members will be notified when updates are added. See you soon.
This is my last update for this year. It has been a very busy month for me both at my secular job and other areas of life. I only have a few pictures to post for this month because most of the work I've been doing on the models is redundant, so I will be posting the latest updates in January where I will have more interesting pics to add. At the moment I am working on the Photon Torpedo launcher effects for the Enterprises and Reliant. I've had to build shrouds for the Torpedo tubes to cut down on the inside light bleeding. I've sanded the insides of the warp crystal domes as well as the insides of the deflector dishes. I'm also adding the window glass for the botany deck and the officer's lounge as well as the rec-deck. These additions are very time consuming due to the limited space to work in. I'm also adding the flashing light effects and the strobes as well as the fluorescent interior lighting. These will all be in place by the next update. I am having a friend of mine do some welding work for some armatures that are needed for the drydock part of the model. He will also be building some framework for the Drydock models to be stron enough to support the weight of both models.
December is a very bad month for me so there will be very little time for me to do major work on these kits. But everything is winding down to completion and I will begin the next phase of at least 2 of the models and that is the Long Awaited Drydock Models.
In other updates, I'm sure most everyone has heard of the release of the Round 2 TOS Original Enterprise model kit Premier edition. I have received mine as of last week #538 of 1701. This kit is very well thought out and heavy duty which will be a refreshing change to the flimsy and inaccurate AMT/ertl kits many of us have built over the years. I have already looked over much of the kit and have figured out how I'm going to do the lighting of the nacells as well as the bridge and hanger deck. I believe I will aslo redo the mount for the model so it is a little more stable. If you don't have one of these kits you should definitely think about getting one. I've posted a pic of my model certificate in the "FUTURE BUILDS" page.
Well, every one be safe during December and I look forward to January's latest posts. Take care, and see you next Year!
I have several updates this month, the first has to do with the WEBSITE! I have reopened and reorganized the Forum page. I hope all who visit here can help me develope our Forum into a very diverse sharing of personal builds wether kit or scratchbuilt, Science Fiction, Real space or General Model building. I am open for other suggestions as well, but please contribute your WIPs and Masterpieces here for the benefit of others. You must be a member to add your voice to this forum, so please join in. The membership is free and all you need to do is sign up.
This month I've been concentrating on finishing up all of the major painting and/or Aztec patterns on the Enterprise Saucers. I have to say I am super Glad this is now pretty much behind me now. Just some minor touchups that need to be done, but most of these will be finished when the models are completely assembled. The next phase of these kits is the DECALS of both the upper and lower saucers as well as the engineering hulls. I was kind of taken aback with these kits when I finally realized that there are several decals that are not included with the decal page namely, the yellow areas for around the phaser turrets along with their Red outlines. I had to paint all of these on instead. I also had to paint on the Red stripes that go along the outside of the bridge area. But all of these colors are now painted on included the gray stripes where the dorsal meets the saucer and the gray stripe that encircles the bridge area back to the officer's lounge. The area around the windoes was painted Intermediate blue. After everything set, I then Gloss Coated all of the Painted areas with 2 coats to first seal all the paints so that it would be easier to handle the model pieces and also prepare the surface for the massive decaling that needed to be done. The upper and lower saucer and the engineering hulls all needed to be decaled. I believe when I counted up all the decals that needed to be applied and there were about 283 individual applications. Many of the single piece decals had to be cut as individuals, namely the ships name and registry numbers. The decal sheet has great graphics but the backing used is extremely thin and for some reason I needed to soak them a few minutes extra in order for it to seperate completely from the backing. But everything went on very smoothly. After the decals were added another light coat of gloss coat was then spritzed on and left to dry for about an hour, this will prevent the decals from sliding if the coat is too heavy. Then after another hour or so I put on the final coat and this sealed everything in place. There are 38 new pic in this months update.
Now I will be able to start on the interior lighting and adding the interior pieces to the model. I will first need to build some cradles to hold the models in place while I'm working on these areas. But the ships are finally going to be assembled during the next month. Even I'm looking forward to the update for next month! See you then!
NEW FORUM! NEW FORUM! NEW FORUM! NEW FORUM! NEW FORUM!
This month was not a good month for productivity, I ran into a very nasty problem with the Hanger Decks... All three of them actually. While they were in storage the very ends of the flight decks started to warp (no pun intended) upwards. I finally realized there was no chance of getting these pieces to fit into the model properly, so I was going to have to re-do all 3 flight deck pieces. Apparently the resin I used, which was supposed to be a very hard and durable resin, was not as hard and durable as was promised, So I had to cut off all of the flight deck pieces and use what I originally wanted to use in the first place but was afraid that the paint would not adhere to it very well, and that is pieces of window quality plexi-glass. I first had to trace the old piece shapes onto the plexi then cut them and reshape them until they fit perfect inside the models. Then I wanted to add some more detailing to the flight deck namely, more and clearer landing and take off lines along with parking position lines for the work bees. The best way to do this was to first mask off the areas where the chase lighting effects would go, then spray the entire top of the deck piece flat black to make sure no stray lighting would come through the deck. Then I sprayed the same entire pieces yellow so I could mask off the lines I wanted on the deck. I didn't want to do this the other way around because I was afraid the masks might peal off some of the deck paint. Anyway it was easier to cut small strips of masking tape and get all of the yellow lines nice and straight. Then I sprayed the flight deck Intermediate Blue. Then removed all of the masks and finally sprayed the entire deck pieces with gloss cote. This gives the deck a nice sheen to it. Check out the pics in the November update page and you'll see what I mean.
After this huge delay I started adding the porthole glass which for the most part is .005" clear styrene #9005 and then the exterior lighting and wiring for the secondary hull. This proved to be quite a challenge because the Engineering hull comes pre-assembled and if you have large hands, it can be quite cumbersome getting all of these LEDs in there. Plus there is the matter of getting all of the spot lights aimed properly, then carefully putting the hanger deck piece inside without bumping anything. I have several Lighting TEST pics in this update and from what I'm seeing it looks pretty good so far and I can move onto the Deflector Dish lighting and start on some of the saucer lighting.
Also in this update I've been able to add one of the botany decks inside the engineering hull. This deck will be lit with some EL lighting. I really like the effect this stuff does on a piece like this. It lights the deck up very evenly rather than the sharp light points that an LED gives off. It was also a challenge to get this deck into the hull. It can not be done assembled. I had to first put the lower half in first, then the top piece. They are both very tricky to get in there. The corners of the pieces had to be fed up into the dorsal (Thank goodned it was hallow otherwise I would've really been stuck) then slowly turned so that the pieces were parallel to each other then one more 90 deg turn to make them fit into thier final postion.
Just one more note: Because of the redoing of the flight deck pieces, I was only able to accomplish all of these updates on only one of the models, so I will need to repeat these on two more of the kits and portions of this on the Reliant model. I apologize for this mess up, but sometimes these things happen, but actually I'm kinda glad it did because I like how the flight decks look much better than I did before. Well that's it for this update. Please feel free to make comments! See you in 1 month!
Hey everyone! There are 26 new pics for this month's update! Please check them out! Comments are always welcome.
It's been a very busy month for the Enterprsie models! I've now begun working on the Aztec patterns! And hooooweee! that is sure a lot of work.I've decided not to use any friskette to make the patterns because I've found that the widths of the grids vary slightly from one another. Some are wider and some are narrower. This can be very frustrating when using a friskette template. So in this case I measured the widest grid and use that for the basis of my pattern, then for the narrower grids I just make slight cuts and do some minor overlapping for the narrower grids. So all of the patterns for each individual grid are now matched up more perfectly with masking tape than they ever could be with a stencil or friskette. It takes about one hour to do one entire grid circle on each of the saucers. All of the upper saucers Aztec patterns are completed and I've got 4 rings of the grids done on the lower saucers. So, yeh, do the math... yes, about 30 hours to get what I did, done. But the pictures will speak for themselves. Everyhting is turning out very nice at this point.
I've also had to tweek a few things with the engineering hull and deflector housing. As I re-watched parts of ST:TPM and ST: TWOK I realized that something did not appear to be right and it turned out to be the Strongback and deflector dish housing. In ST:TMP when the Enterprise was in drydock, I was not seeing any of the strongback details that I painted on the ship that I was seeing in the movie. There was way too much definition to the colors that I had used and there is a slight sheen to the surface of the ship indicating she was basically "BRAND NEW". I began to rethink what I did and it turns out that I had been following pictures of the studio model details as the model was repainted for 1701 - "A". I became very distrought and realize this needed to be corrected befor I add decals. The solution was quite simple though, I took some light Neutral gray and thinned it out a lot. Then with a very light spray setting on my airbrush, I resprayed over the entire strongback with this color and guess what. It worked. You can still see the details but they have been toned down quite a bit. I will be spraying the Engineering hull as well as the other parts of the ship with gloss to give it just enough sheen to not only add the decals, but to give it the new hull look as well.
I should be able to have the rest of the masking done by the next update and hopefully all of the decals will be finished, then I can finally start putting these babies together and begin the lighting and wiring.
For Reliant, I've been so busy with the Aztec work on the Enterprises that very minimal work has been done on Reliant. I have started working on the Roll-bar and torpedo housing. The tops and bottoms have been epoxoed to their respective pieces and now I can begin the painting and Aztec-ing of these pieces as well. Everything is coming together and the models will all be finished pretty much at about the same time.
So, that's all for this update. I will see you again next update! Take care,
This months update is very picture heavy!
For the Reliant update I've decided to tackle this model's Aztec Pattern first because there is a difference in the pattern from the Enterprise Aztec Pattern. Not only that but there is far more detailwork that needed to be done with the upper saucer section than with the Enterprise models. In fact the detailing on Reliant is the most detail work that I've ever put into any single model EVER! I was very pleased with the way it has turned out. I was also able to put on most of the Decals in this update. The one thing I didn't realize when I recieved this kit was that other than the markings around the hatches there were no red stripe decals that came with this model, so I decided to paint them all on myself. I was able to use Insignia Red as the color of choice and it turned out to be a good choice. There is very little difference between the Decal Red and the Painted on stripes as you will see in the pics. For the shoulder part or rear of the upper saucer there is a grid pattern that can be seen on the filming miniature, so I had to put this on the model first. It can be seen as very thin blue lines of masking tape. Then I was able to add all of the different shapes of pre-cut masking tape to the insides of each of these grid boxes. The results came out excellent when the tape was removed. I've also painted up the top and underneath aft section which at first threw me as to the color. A picture of the original Reliant revealed that some of these sections appeared to be a light blue or gray color. But when I reviewed ST:TWOK a saw that all of these details were dark. So, before I messed this part up I began to decide what this color was. It was very difficult to determine on the screen. I happened to have an AMT/ertl Reliant kit and was just curious to see if the instructions had any hints of wjat colors to use. In this case it suggested Intermediate Blue, which I had never heard of, but I looked it up on-line and found that Model Master Paints did in fact have this color, so I tried it out and then compared it to the pictures I have of the original filming miniature and sure enough, it was a very spot on match which was a complete relief to me. I also realized at this point this is a common color used on smaller parts of the ship such as the torpedo launchers and some of the Interior parts for the hatches that I am putting into the Enterprise builds. So with a big sigh of relief I can move onto to other parts of this model. I put a color comparison picture of both my build and the Filming miniature in the update so you can decide for yourselves wether or not the build looks as close as possible to the filming miniature. Let me know what you think.
For the Enterprise update, unfortunately I was not able to get too much accomplished on the Aztec Painting because of spending so much time on Reliant. But it has been started and is going good as well. Although the Aztec pattern is different from Reliant I am still using the same painting technique. First I've sprayed the entire saucer sections, top and bottom Neutral Gray and now I'm in the process of masking of smaller areas of the hull to create the first color of the Aztec pattern. These maskings will then be removed after spraying the next color "Light Gray" and then lightly spraying over that to soften up the harshness of the Neutral Gray color. Then for the final Aztec Pattern I will overlap different parts of the first color with the masking and painting to give the hull the appearance of several different shades of color in the Aztec pattern. There are 5 new pics of this process in the August updates. As of this update I have two of the Enterprise upper saucers masked and ready for painting. By the next update I should have all of the base colors finished.
See you next update! Enjoy! And as always comments and New members are always welcome!
Greetings everyone! June has been an extremely busy month for me. We had visitors from out of town for a few weeks, so I did not get as much done as I would have liked. I was going to begin Aztec patterns on all 4 ships, but found that it would just be easier to concentrate on Reliant for now. So, all of the updates for this month are soley for Reliant! Sorry to those who are following the Refit Enterprise build, but next month will be mainly for Enterprise! Now because there are 2 different Aztec patterns on the saucer section it was just a lot easier to get this done and out of the way first. I will then be able to concentrate on the Enterprise Hulls all this month.
I am pleased to say that even though I had a slight mis-hap with the painting, I was able to salvage the work in a unique kind of way as you will see in this month's update pictures. The entire bottom of Reliant's saucer is now completely Aztec-ed and now I need to add some of the other details, such as the hatch doors, the positioning thrusters, lower dome details and some hull detailing for the engineering section, the impulse engines and the hanger doors. It's starting to look real sharp and I'm very happy with how things are looking.
I've also started work on the top of the saucer and these details should be completed by next month's update. I may even have some of the decals added on by then. There are 18 new pics in this month's update. Hope you enjoy! Comments are always welcome and so are new Memebers! See you next month!
I have added 30 new pics for the June Updates. 15 Pics each for both the Reliant and Enterprise models.
For Reliant I've finished lower saucer dome piece, I've sealed it from the inside of the hull and removed the excess resin so it will be easier to work on the lighting and wiring later on. I have also added the lower saucer detail pieces and epoxied them into oplace from the inside as well. I've had trouble centering the upper piece to the lower one, so I added some edging guides to maker sure the pieces fit together smoothly. you can see this with picture number 4 in the June Updates. The holes for the hanger doors have been widened a bit and a hole for the impulse engine piece and the warp crystal have been cut out and the pieces are now epoxied into place. For the bay doors I've masked off the areas where the lighting effects will come through and I have a couple of good pics (# 9 & 10) that show how masks look. I had to view a few shots in ST:TWOK to find the lighting pattern both from the bottom and the top of the doors. Next I was able to Opaque the pieces using Flat back to cover the entire model to block Light leaks. The next step was to start on the next color for the darker details which in this case is a Light Neutral Gray Paint. I've been able to start the masking of the upper saucer as well. I should have at least one of the next colors added on as well as the two different Aztec patterns that are seen on the filming miniature.
For the Enterprises it has been quite a month of work. The first tough part was to add the new re-cast thruster pieces to the tops and bottoms of the saucers. Some were exact fits while others needed a bit of sanding and puttying, but all this effort will produce a very nice lighting effect later on. I've had to cut out some wiring holes in the saucer section to allow the wiring to go from the saucer to the Dorsal. I've also had to remove a section of one of the framing braces to allow room for the crew rec-deck assembly for later on. I have also opened up the rear of the upper saucer to allow for both the epoxying of the warp crystal/impulse engine piece as well as the lighting effects for that area. I've made the hole large enough so I can epoxy these pieces into place well enough so they won't move at all. To epoexy them into place and take care of the putty work at the same time, I line the entire rim of the Warp crystal piece with the putty, then press it into place, then I immediatly epoxy the piece into place with 5 minute epoxy. When this is set I take an exacto blade and remove the excess putty from the outside. This alows for sanding to be kept to a minimum. Next I mask off the Warp crystal dome as well as the impulse engines so that I can opaque the entire hull top and bottom. I let the Flat black set for at least a day then spray the entire top and bottom with Light Neutral Gray. I've been finding it better to start with the darker colors first, then mask off the smallest details and work my way up to the lightest colors. By next month I should have most of the first masking done and hopefully the second one for most of the saucer pieces. Hope you enjoy this update and I'll see you all next month.!
For the Enterprise update this month, I have been able to finish up most of the work on the strongback and the deflector dish detailing. I still need to scrape off some of the paint on the outside ring of the dish to allow for the lighting effects, but for the most part the painting is finished. I will now start decals on the engineering hull. There are only a few to worry about. I should have an update for this by next month. For this month I have started doing the prep - work for the saucer sections. The first thing I needed to do is to make sure all of the viewports are nice and even, then cut out all of the thruster pieces and replace them with clear re-cast pieces so the lighting effect will look half way decent. I will also be adding the bottom saucer domes. I've cut out all of the holes for the lighting effect and will replace them with some clear pieces. I will be adding the bridge pieces to all of the saucer top halves at this point as well as adding the warp crystal domes on the back end of the saucer. All of this is in preparation for the Aztec pattern to be added on the top and bottom halves of the saucers. The latest pics are now availible in the "Updates for May 2012" page.
For Reliant, I have begun working on the saucer section as well. I have cut out all of the thruster pieces and have replaced them with clear recast pieces. I have also added the bridge piece to the top hull and the lower saucer has the dome in place. These pieces are now epoxied in and ready for the painting process. The hull will have to be sanded down, then opaqued, and then I can prime everything up and begin the Aztec process on this model. I am not making the Aztec pattern the same as the Enterprise model, which I have seen a few others do. I had to take a reference pic of the filming miniature, make it into a negative picture and do some enhancing to help define the Aztec pattern a little better so I can make my own masks. There are in fact 2 different Aztec patterns on this ship. I posted a pencil sketching of what the patterns look like and then I have also begun creating some of the masks of one of the patterns of which I have posted a picture of what it looks like in this month's update. The other pattern will be started once this one is completed. Now that I've started on the Saucers of all of these ships I can see the finishing up of these models on the horizon for now. I am also looking forward to starting on the Drydock as well. I have also started some blueprints of the Drydock scaled to these models so things are progressing nicely. See you next update!
This has been an extremely busy month. All of my work has centered on the Secondary Hull and the Strongback detailing. There are 4 different colors added to the Aztec pattern on the engineering section and then they were oversprayed with the final off-white color that will be the ships signature look. The Strong back was a little different though. I used about 6 shades on this part as well as the deflector dish housing. Although the final colors are not on these parts, the Secondary hull is now completely Aztec-ed. There are 26 new pics in the Updates For April page. I mounted the engines on the hull as well as the saucer to get an idea of how everything will look together. Check out the pics and let me know what you think. I will be finishing up the Strong back as well as the front part of the Deflector dish for next month's update. I will start assembling the Hanger deck, the botany Deck and some of the wiring for the engines. I will also finally begin to work on the Saucer section. So stay tuned and I will see you next month!
Greetings everyone! Well, it's now March. Time is flying by quickly! This past month I've been working on the masking for the 4 different shades of Aztec paneling for the entire Engineering Hull. So far I've been able to do the first 3 shades and 2 seperate masks. I was able to spray the 3rd shade on this morning. After the paint has set for 24 hrs I can begin the masking for the final shade on the hull and do some minor masking for the Strongback features as well as the housing for the main deflector dish and the dorsals front and back. On a few parts of the hull, some of the small masks have come off or have moved a bit due to the handling and from what I'm seeing the painting is turning out very well. Unfortunately we won't get to see what it all culminates to until the final colors have been added, the paneling is toned down and then the masking can all be removed. I've also begun some more masking for the main deflector dish piece (that is not connected to the engineering hull). The Deflector housing and stronback will be done in slightly darker colors, but they will not stand out too much. I'm really trying to shoot for the look in ST:TMP where everything is more subtle. From WOK onward there have been different and duller finishes added to the miniature for filming purposes. After the painting is all finished for the Engineering Hull I can finally add the Nacells to the hull and start working on some of the wiring and lighting. I feel real good about how things are looking so far and even I am looking forward to my own future updates. It's getting there my fellow modelers. Just hang in there!
Also, in this update I've managed to secure a 4 1/2" Travel Pod model. No decals, though. Because of the transparent viewport piece that came with this kit, I have every intention of building an interior for this kit. If I get a little hung up on the DeBoers' projects, I might start doing a few things with kit as well. I put this kit on the Home page sidebar if anyone wants to see what the kit looks like
See you next update,
I have 16 new pics in the February update. I have spent a lot of the last month trying to smooth out the Engineering Hull. Ive been re-shaping a lot of the viewports and adding places for new lighting effects both to the Travel Pod Air-lock doors as well as the Hanger Deck. All of this is done in preparation for the Aztec patterns that will soon be added. To help protect some of the etched lines in the hull as welll as add some detailing I have begum masking out all of these lines and details. This process takes about 2-1/2 hrs per side. The pics in this months update show all of the detailed masking. I will then begin adding different shapes to different parts of the hull to begin some of the Aztec work.
Other updates this month include the spraying of the Main Deflector dish and housing piece which will also have some Aztecing put into it. Also I've sprayed the Bridge pieces in preparation for their detailing work. By the next update I hope to have at last 2 more color shades added to these pieces. See you in next months update.
As mentioned in my last update I have updated some of the features on my site to help make it easier for Members and Visitors to find my latest updates without having to search though too many photos. Starting this month, you will be able to go directly to the current updates by clicking on the UPDATES FOR JANUARY 2012 page on the left hand sidebar. I will probably leave 2 or 3 months worth on the homepage and then move them to the appropriate pages later on.
Now for my first update this year, I've been doing some refining of the details on the secondary hull. I've added all of the re castings of the Travel Pod Doors and epoxied them in place, next the will be prepaired for opaqueing and painting. I've also started working on how to put the lenses on some of the lighting effects. In this case it will be the Lighting ouside the Hanger bay. My solution was to drill the holes out, then add clear resin into the cavities. Not a very easy process, but after the work is done it looks pretty sharp. I've taken a couple of pics to show what the lighting effects will turn out like in the secondary hull. The same goes true for the Thrusters. I've decided to cut out the wedges on the tops and bottoms of the saucers and re-insert them with clear epoxy resin pieces. Right now I'm still making the molds for these parts and I should have the first of them done in a few weeks. In the meantime, I've also been casting several clear and white resin shuttle craft that I will be using for the hangers and also the Drydock model for when I start on that project. So stay tuned. I will be opaquing the secondary hull in the up-coming weeks and then I can start on the Aztecing for the Secondary Hull.
See you next month.
Greetings everyone! Time to start a new calender year. I've made a few changes to my website this year. I've updated all of my photo albums and relabeled all of them and now Members and Guests can get to my personal projects via my HOME PAGE. To the left hand side you can see all of the projects I am currently and/or have worked on from the past to the present. I will have a new sidebar page in my next regular update that will show the current progres on my WIPs. This will make it easier for visitors to go to the updates on my current project(s). By the following update the pictures will then be moved to the appropriate Album.
In other updates, the Photo Album has now been renamed Memeber's Photo Gallery so all Members can post pictures of their personal projects and/or works in progress.
Also, last month we welcomed our 100th member to join my website. Hope to have more visitors sign up and join us for our builds.
My first Enterprise and Reliant update will be posted in a few weeks, so stay tuned. I will e-mail blast all members about the new update and of course add posts to the regular forum posts. Thanks to all who have visited my site over the last year. See you soon!
Well, everyone! This has been a busy year for me. The projects are coming along nicely and I feel I'm gaining some momentem. Unfortunately because of my peak season which will be starting sometime this week, I'm afraid I won't have much time or energy or the will to do much on these projects for the next two weeks or so. However, I've been able to get a lot of things accomplished since the last update. Noteably:
In the Enterprise build: I've added 26 new pics starting on page 3 slide 180 thru page 4 slide 205. I've begun working on the engineering hull. Like the warp engines there is a ton of putty and sanding work that needs to be done and redone. The bottoms of the hulls are the worst parts. They have a little bit of a valley in them which makes it very difficult for a nice smooth and rounded finish. I've had to fill in the old mounting holes on the 2 shipd that will be mounted from the saucer section in the drydocks and the other ship needed a larger bore hole for the mounting rod that will be used for the Mutara Nebula diorama. I have also added some new nacell mounting holes for when the engines are finally attached to the hull. I'm also going to add the lighting effects that are seen on wither side of the travel pod docking ports. To do this I had to drill out the old hatch doors and have rebuilt my own doors so that I can re-cast them in clear resin to allow for the small but interesting lighting effect.
Recasting a LOT of parts. This model was not inteded for lighting that is for sure. That is why all of the port holes need to be drilled out. But also, there are other pieces that need to be redone. So far I've recast the torpedo launching tubes, the lighting housing for underneath the fantail, the strobe light covers or domes for the flashing light effects, the airlock piece which I built at the begining of this project and have now finally got around to casting it into a single piece. I only need two of these pieces, that's why it took so long to get to. And finally the largest piece I've had to cast: the main deflector dish and the dish housing. This too was originally to be done as two seperate pieces, but I didn't like the way the hole drilling was turning out and I do not want it to look like a drilled them out either. So I recast these two pieces into one clear resin piece. I will then follow a technique that was used while building the Spacedock in STIII:TSFS where the entire plexiglass model was first painted over and then all of the spots that were supposed to be windows or portholes where lightly scratched off to allow the interior lighting to come through. I tried this on a scrap piece and it works out beautifully. I will have pics of this later on.
I just have a few more small things to add onto the engineering hull by way of detailing and then I will be ready to begin the painting which I am looking forward to doing.
While most of the work is centering on the Refit Enterprise, I have been able to do some small things on Reliant as well. There are some re-casting of some of the parts on this model like the super phaser cannons that will go on the roll bar. These are being cast in a clear resin to allow for some future lighting effects. I'm also adding a new travel pod port to the rear of the bridge with it's own lighting effects. The other things that have been cast are the torpedo tube housings for the front and rear tubes and also the small strobe dome covers for the flashing light effects. Some of the pics for the Reliant Build a reused from the Enterprise build, but the work being done on them is basically the same. The new pics are on page 2 pics 75-82. Enjoy!
Well, that's it for this update. Please be safe everyone. I will see you in 2012!
Take care, Mark
OKAY EVERYONE!!!!! Big update this month! I have added 28 new pics to the Reliant (12 Pics) and Enterprise (16 Pics) albums! A lot of energy and work have gone into these engines and I'm happy to say that other than a few pieces that will be added later on, the Engines are all basically done!
In the Enterprise update, I've had to spray the entire engines with a very light and thinned out coat of off white. This will tone down the Aztec colors just a little bit but will allow the sublte shapes of the Aztecing to show through. I've also painted up all of the misc. details such as the inside stripes that run up the support pylons. This took 3 different colors to make the stripe look perfect, Then I've added the decals which in this case are only 2 decals to the rear of the engines. The only thing I need to add to these now are the small domes for the warp crystals and the strobes on the rear ends of engines. So now I can finally put these in mothballs for a while and start working on the next part of this project, which I'm looking forward to, and that will be the "Engineering Hull". At least in this case there are only 3 pieces to work on, so the updates might be a little closer together.The new pics are on page 3 of the Enterprise album pics 164 - 179.
For the Reliant update, I've finally finished these engines as well! I've had to tone down the Aztec patterns by spraying them with a very light coat of off white and then add the 4 decals that go on either sides of the engines. These engines are now finished and I can start moving on to other areas of the this ship. The new pics for Reliant are in the Reliant Album on page 2 pics 63 - 74!
To find the pics on the albums faster just hover the cursor over the pics. They are now identified by numbers rather than dates.
See you next update!!!!
In this month's update I've made it a little easier to access the projects by putting them on the sidebar of my home page. This way members and visitors can have quicker access to the current projects. In the photo album section I've regrouped the albums into specific categories to help make searching the photos a lot easier as well. The category groups are on the right hand side of the Photo Album page.
Now for this month's updates!
I've added 5 New pics (58-62) in the DeBoers Reliant Album. These show the added paint details on the nacell as well as the pylons. There are 4 colors including the touch ups of the nacell warp grills. Unfortunately I didn't take any pics of the maskings for the Reliant, but the idea is about the same as the Enterprise maskings.
In the DeBoers Enterprise Album I've added 15 new pics of the nacells and Engines (Page 3 pics 149-163) Most of the final colors have been added, as well some warp grill touch up. The gray stripe that's on the inside of the nacells will need 2 more shades of gray to finish that detail up. The fronts of the warp grills will be painted copper and and then a very light thinned out coat of off-white will be air-brushed over the Aztec patterns on the engines to tone them down just a bit. I hope you like these progress pics. By the next update I should have the decals on and I'll be starting on the secondary hull. Looking forward to the next update myself!
As always, comments are welcome and all new visitors are welcome to join my site to recieve the latest updates without having to keep checking for them! See you next update!
Well, it's been an extremely busy 30 or so days. For the past month I've done nothing but masking on the 8 Warp engines in 4 different colors. In fact I've done so much masking that I'm starting to dream about blue masking tape!!!!! (EEEEK) But I think the end result was worth all of the effort. I am very happy with how the paint job has turned out. I hope my visitors will feel the same. Please feel free to comment on it, good or bad.
In the DB Enterprise album I've added 10 new pics (# 139- 148) of the painting progress of the Warp Engines. Each engine had to be masked for four different colors. All of the colors where then lighlty airbrushed on to prevent the paint from building up on the masks. The process took about a month to do and it takes about an hour and a half to remove the masking tape from just one side of the Nacell. So there's a lot of work involved.
In the DB Reliant album, I've added 13 new pics (#45-57) This shows all of the painting stages that were done on these engines. There were some different ways to paint these engines, especially the Pylons. They are very different from Enterprise's paint pattern. The only good pic I have of the studio model suggests the Aztec patterns are more vertical than horizontal, so all of the detailing you will see will appear that way.
In the next update I should have all of the flush vents, thrusters, strobes, minor cracks and chips fixed up, and the Nacell decals will be added. After that I will be moving on to the Engineering Hull. See you in the next update.
Today I just finished the 1st of 3 maskings for both of Reliant's Warp engines and I'm now ready to airbrush the 2nd of 4 different colors. The next color to be added will be an off white, which I used on my PL Enterprise and it came out beautiful. There are not a whole lot of reference pics for the filming miniature that show, in very clear detail, all of the engines and support pylon details. I took a look at the decals for the Ertl Reliant kit and while I'm using it for a reference, I don't think they're completly what I wanted to do. I also have some pics of the Reliant when it was at auction at Christies, but of course there aren't any clear ones of the nacells. So, I'm using some of the pattern that I have put on the Enterprise engines and am beefing up the width of some of the maskings to help suggest that this starship is a little more heavily armoured. As for the pylons, the pics I have suggest that the patterns are more verticle than horizontal. This really is a milestone for this project because there are 8 warp engines total that are being detailed so to have this part of it finally complete is very exciting. For the next masking it won't be as much work because I will be adding masking to the masking... get it? Well, By the next update you'll see what I mean. See you then!
The latest slides are # 39 -44 in Deboers Reliant Project album
I now it's been a while for the updates, but I am working on the most difficult part of building these models and that's the starting of the AZTEC Pattern for the Engines. In the DEBOERS ENTERPRISE update I've sprayed the basecoating of FLAT WHITE on all of the endines and pylons, then I began with the first of up to 5 different colors I will be using for the AZTEC patterns. I have also started on the basic "Lightning bolt pattern" for the support pylons as well as the masking off of the first color that will be needed for the complicated shading of the engines and so forth. It takes about 3 hours per engine just to start this pattern off. To date I've completed the masking of all of the Port Side engines on the Enterprise models. Now I will be doing the reverse pattern on all of the starboard engines. I had a tough time deciding on what exact pattern would be for the pylons because even though there are many great pics of the filming miniature's details around many different parts of the ship, there are very few clear ones of the support pylons. So I had to scour the movies again, finally finding a good or at least a half way decent shot while the Enterprise is in Drydock. (Thank gooness for ST:TMP) The shot is about 3-4 seconds long but it showed enough of what I needed to get started. There are 5 new pics in this album #'s 133-138.
For the Reliant project, I don't have any more than 2 new pics to show you because I haven't got to those engines as of this update. The masking patterns will be similar to Enterprise though. Right now I have those Engines opaqued, they have their base soat of FLat white and the first of 4-5 colors painted on which would be Light Gray. I will be making these Aztec patterns a littl more subtle rather than having them jump out at you but you will be able to see the different colors the closer you geth to the models. Hope you enjoy these updates. I'm really looking forward to adding the other colors to these engines just to see how they'll turn out. More updates coming soon! See you then!
It's been a crazy month for the Reliant and Enterprise. The Nacells are quite a job to get just right. The problem is with the seams on the top and bottom of the nacell. They do not join together in a nice straight and even seam unlike an injection molded kit. I've had to do a lot of sanding on almost all of the engine pieces. Remember that there are 8 engines total for 4 models, so it's a lot of work. I've only been able to opaque 3 of the engines so far and am still working on the final sanding for the other 5 engines. I do have 4 pics in the Enterprise Album, #'s 129-132 and 3 new pics in Reliant #'s 34-36.
As I've stated in my last updates, there is a problem with the grills on all of the models. The filming miniature has 5 lines of lighting effects on the warp grills whereas the DeBoers only has 4. The Polar Lights model has 5 grooves rather than 4. To me this is a huge mistake that would take a monumental amount of work to fix the problem so I'll just have to allow for the difference. Also, the pictures I have of the Warp grills show that the lighting effect only goes back so far on the engines and not all the way to the end of the grills. There is a little bit of difference in opinion as to which part of the grill actually lights up. I'm sticking with the deep grooves since it matches up with the movies stills I have. It's too bad this error is so obvious, at least to me. But what can I do. It will still look sharp when they are finished.
By my next update I should have the base colors started on the engines. See you then!
What a month this has been! A lot of problems encountered with these builds, but eventually were smoothed out and fixed. I've added a couple of pics for both the Enterprise and Reliant albums this month. I have to tell you it's been a tough month though. First I had problems with an order of 3mm yellow LEDs that I needed for the thruster effects. They kept sending me the wrong size and the wrong color LED which was becoming a problem and putting me seriously behind on my updating. Next I had one of the lighting circuits go out on me and it was difficult to isolate the problem, but I managed to finaly find out what was going wrong with it an repaired that with no problem. I also managed to break 2 of the fluorescent tubes that light the warp engines..... GAAAAAH! Now I'm in the process of epoxying the engine halves together which is no easy task because of the nature of the epoxy and it's curing time. At first I tried to epoxy the entire engine pieces together in one shot, but found this to be way too messy and cumbersome and it left a few gaps I didn't count on. So in order to avoid the mess I decided to epoxy only sections at a time. First, I'm epoxying the fron't and rear of the nacell then clamping those together over night to ensure agood bond. Then with 2 exacto blades I apply the epoxy to the top seam only. I use one knife to hold the seam apart then apply the epoxy with the other knife, clamp it together and let it bond over night. I repeat the same with the bottom seam. This allows me to avoid a lot of mess by doing it a little at a time. The pictures I've added show that I've added an abundance of epoxy to make sure the seam is over-filled. This will minimize the need for a whole lot of putty later on. But at least now I have the Warp nacells assembled. I will begin smoothing these out and preparing them for opaquing and their final paint job. More to come. Stay tuned!
I know it's been about 9 months since I've added any updates for the Reliant, but for the most part many of the work that is being done on the Enterprise is very similar to the Reliant as far as some of the interiors go such as the officer's lounge and many of the components for the Warp Engines are very similar as well with a few minor differences. For instance the wiring will be run through the top of the Nacell because the support pylons are connected from the top rather than underneath. The Reliant has some spot lights just like the Enterprise except they are on the top inside front of the nacells facing the saucer. They are also much smaller in size. While I have tested the lighting on all of the engines I did run into a few problems. I had what I called a nacell malfunction when I accidently cracked one of the fluorescent tubes and had to replace it. Carelessness on my part, but everything is functioning within normal perameters as it were. Another problem I've run into is that some LEDs that I ordered turned out to be the wrong color. I ordered some bright yellow LEDs to use for the thrusters and when I recieved them I found out the were not yellow, but Orange. Very upsetting, so now I have to wait for the new ones to come in. I was hoping to have the warp engines all sealed up and ready for some putty work, but this will have to wait for a while. In the meantime I'm preparing the rest of the wiring for all of the engines. I've also found a huge mistake with the warp grills that I will go into next update. There are 13 new pics in The DeBeors Reliant Album starting at pic 18. You should be seeing more updates in this album as I get closer to assembling these kits together.
I've also updated a few things on my website. My links page has been greatly updated. I've had several of you ask where I've bought some of my supplies for building my models so I've edited out all of the bad links and re-updated the links into three different categories: Forums and Communities, Finished Models, and Modeling supplies. This should help you out a little. If there are any sites you think I should add to my links, please let me know. Until then, happy model building and I will see you next update!
I've finally started work on the Warp nacells of all 4 ships. This is the first project that I've done using Epoxy. At first I thought Ididn't care for it so much, but after seeing the results and getting used to the smell, I believe I'm hooked. There are a lot of things you can do with epoxy resin that you can't do with cement. For you seasoned modelers I'm sure you might feel the same way. Anyway the new pictures start in the Deboers E album on the second page with slide 108 - 125. In this update I've cut out a lot of the holes for the lighting effects, I've added the Warp effect grills and added the fins to the rear of all of the engines. I've been able to run the wiring necessary for 4 seperate lighting effects needed in each of the nacells. About 6 months ago I had purchased enough Micro Fluorescent tube lamps to light all 4 ships and now I'm finally able to add these items into the nacells and secure them into the models. At the end of the album I have an engine lighting test pic. I'm very happy with the test reults so far. In these models you will not be able to see any LEDs in the warp grills like you could with the PLE version I did. When All of the components are added into the nacells, I will be able to seal them up and begin the finall touches on the seams and cracks and dings that are in the hull by doing some extensive putty-work along with sanding and filing. After this I will be able to opaque the engines and start there final paint jobs. Talk with you next update.
I have several update pics in the photo Gallery. (Slides 97-107) I've begun airbrushing the Rec-Deck, Officer's Lounge and a few other pieces. I'll be adding a few plants here and there inside these pieces, but more than likely they will not be viewable when they are placed inside the ships. But finally most of the interior work is getting finished up and I can begin working on the Outsides of the ships. Which I am looking forward to very much. I know there hasn't been too much news about the Reliant as of yet, but some of these pieces will be used in Reliant as well as Enterprise. I will be scratch-building a few corridors for a few of the other viewports but for the most part I am winding up on the interiors. The Reliant doesn't have the huge viewport windows to look into like Enterprise, so there isn't the need for as many interiors. I am putting the officer's lounge in Reliant because, believe it or not there are viewports on the back of the ship. On another Reliant build it was pointed out about the location of the officer's lounge. I went over all of the shots of Reliant in STII:TWOK and sure enough there was one pull-away shot through the ship's roll-bar where there were 4 light-gray windows in about the exact same position of the Enterprises only they were a lot smaller. So they are there and this is why I'm including the lounge in the Reliant model. There will be a few more pics of the interiors that I'm finishing up and then soon I can begin working on the ships hulls. See you next update.
As promised I have a lot of updates for The DeBoers Projects. This time there are 28 new pics of a lot of progress that has been made. Photos 69 to 96 are all new and they begin on page 2 of the DeBoers Project photo album. I have finished casting all of the pieces for the Hanger deck and they are now opaqued and painted their appropriate colors. I've added the turbo lift tubes and scratch built the railings for the catwalks surrounding the cargo bay area. I now I promised a video of the lighting effects for the landing deck, But I ran into a fitting problem. Because the DeBoers models are all individually cast they all have variances in the thickness of the hull so I have to shave a lot of these problem areas down and it's taking some extra time to get this done. But for sure I will have something for you the next updat which won't be too long from now.
I've also continued work on the Botany section. I've added some walls and other details and am now begining the landscaping of 3 of these bays. One for each of the Enterprise models. This part is actually kind of fun. I'm beginning to see why model railroading is a big hit.
I've also made the Crew rec deck. This is a very complicated piece because there are so many different shapes to it and a whole lot of furnature to be put into it as well. I'm starting to get the hang of the resin casting and I now have 3 complete piece castings for the entire rec deck, 3 castings of the botany deck and 4 castings of the officers lounge. All of these pieces will of course need to be painted and detailed and that will be in a future update. I will also work on that video of the lighting effects for the hanger. It's all starting to move now. The tough part is making the masters for the molding process. After the molds are made it gets much easier to make these pieces.
Let me know what you think of the progress and if you're new to my site please join in by signing up for free and you will get the updates every time I have something to add. See you next update!
The newest pics are slides 64 - 68 in the DB Enterprise project album.
In this update I've begun the building of the Flight deck pieces for the Hanger. I've started to build and assemble the Chase lighting effect or landing lights. I realize that this type of lighting was not seen in TMP, but my client asked me to add anything to the models that would enhance it's realism. I've already opaqued 2 of the decks and tested this lighting effect to see how it would look, and I think it works very nicely. In my next updat I will include a small video to show you the effects. Right now I have to finish opaqueing the 3rd flight deck, then paint it it's appropriate color, then add the landing strip details. After that I'll post the effect.
In other news, I've started on the Officer's Lounge piece. This piece is not going to look like the PLE officers lounge. I've been studying some stills from ST:TMP and building my lounge according to the movie. On the PL piece the viev screens are huge and out of scale with the lounge. I've made mine a lot closer to what is seen in the movie. Many of the walls in the movie are actually paneled walls in what appears to be a very light tan color. When you see DR McCoy in the shot, behind him are some more chairs, tables and a couch, and behind the couch are windows. They appear dark but I believe. at least in my version, that it is because no one is in the lower lounge area. You will be able to see through these windows on my version and will also be able to see the right side view screen some-what, whereas the wall on the PLE version almost completely blocks out that screen, being a solid wall.
By my next update I should be able to show you a painted Hanger Deck, possibly one of the Officers lounges finished, I'll have the molds done for these pieces as well as the Botony deck and I will be starting on the the Crew Rec-Deck. I've really been looking forward to building this piece because it is very intricate and is on of my favorite set pieces in the movie. I only wish that that had shown a lot more of it on the screen including a better view of the Warp Nacell outside the rec-deck windows that was barely seen in the movie.
See you next update!
The newest slides are 59 - 63 In the DBE photo album.
My update for this month is a little late, but I've been working on my master molds for the hanger and am going to be starting the casting process. I have a pic of the test casting for the Starboard side of the hanger deck as well as the rear wall. Both test pieces came out very well and I will start the final casting this coming week. I had a few issues with resin I was working with and had to adjust a few things to get this part of it set up right. I also have some of the lighting effects ready to be installed after the pieces are ready and primed and then painted their final colors. I'm trying to match as closely as possible what was seen in TMP, but I'm going to be adding a few of my own touches for the realism effect. I've also started working on the Botany deck. Since the secondary hull comes pre-assembled, it's a little bit harder to make measurements except by trial and error for the proper fitting of the deck inside the model. I've also cast some parts for the ceilings for the opened hatches on the saucer section. I'm also mapping out the officers lounge to begin construction of a master to be cast later on. The PL officers lounge does not match entirley what was seen in ST:TMP. So, I will have a few of my own touches to put in this piece as well. Also on the list of things to do is the creation of the crew rec-deck. I've seen several versions of other modelers re-decks for their PLE models and will be using some of their ideas for these models.
In preparation for things to come, I've purchased some of the lighting tubes and EL lamps and about 250 LEDs that I will be using to light the models, also trees and shrubs, rocks and other items for the botany deck, various resins and silicon rubber for casting multiple scratchbuilt parts.
Here's what the totals for these models will be that need to be built. There will be 4 officer's lounges, 3 for the DBE's and one for the DBReliant. 4 rec-decks, respectively for these models. 3 Botany decks, and 3 Hangers. 2 of the DBE's will have the opened hatches detailing. I'm recasting the main deflector dish and housing with a clear resin rather than the milky white or transparent blue versions.
So, even though you may not see a lot of new pics these last few weeks, there has still been a lot of prep-work being done to beautify these models. As I complete them, I will add more pics. Keep checking the site. You won't be disappointed.
In my update this week, I've begun working on the cargo bay section of the hanger deck. I had to take a lot of interior measurement od the DB Engineering section to make it as large as possible and also make sure it is to scale and that it will actualy fit into the model when I'm finished building it. Then I had to take a lot of measurements of the PLE hanger to scale it up to the DBE size. Everything is being built as a master so that I can make some casting molds. If you look at all of the detail that I'm adding, you'll see why I'm going to be making casting. To put the details on just the upper and lower cargo bay stalls on just one wall took me a little over 3 hours. It's a bear to do but worth the effort. By next update I will have the details on the upper part of the cargo bay added in and all of the strucural wall braces or "ribs" as I'm calling them will be added and then I can start on the ceiling and begin moving to the lower hanger deck starting in the middle section of the hanger. Hope you enjoy the updates and I'll see you when I have new pics.
More work done to the Hanger bay. I'm working on the Turbo Lift tubes and the ceiling details right now. Soon I'll be ready to cast this beastie. It is a very tight squeeze into the main hull of the ship. I've had to trim some of the pieces back just to get it inside the model. The effort is paying off though. I Should be finished with this hanger by the next week or so if all goes well. See you next update.
I've added a few test fitting pics of the hanger bay pieces fitted into the Engineering hull. Because each of the DeBoers models has variances on the insides of the hull I have to be very carefull with the test fitting. I found out that the middle wall section that I've built are going to have to be trimmed so they can fit into the hull space. The upper part of my scratch build part hits the inner wall of the hull and causes it tonot allow the pieces to fit properly. Sometimes you just cant rely on mathamatics to enlarge a piece for the models. These scratch build models need to be built with great care as the DeBoers model and all of the pieces must be very customized to fit in there properly. But... with a little TLC and some tweaking it will all work out. I should have a complete hanger model to show you next week or so and then start casting 3 of them for the other Enterprise models. See you next update.
There are 9 new pics in the DB Enterprise Album this week. In this update I've begun building a scale "master" of the hanger bay. I'm using the PLE hanger as a reference as well as some stills from ST:TMP. Although the pics I'm using as reference are matte paintings there is still much valuable information to be used. For instance, the width of the hanger is wider in the matte paintings than on the actual model piece. So, for the DeBoers I will widen the hanger accordingly. I will be making castings of the walls and ceilings od the hanger so I won't have to rebuild the hanger for all 3 models. I'm going to use a clear resin so I won't have to drill out too many holes for the lighting effects. I am also making some castings for the Bridge dome and lower saucer dome and also the main deflector dish housing as well as the deflector dish itself. This will assist with the lighting effects for these pices as well. I have also included some pictures of the warp nacell grills. The pieces that came with the kits are flat and completely straight. I been able to contour them so the fit better into the nacells. I believe that I will recast these into one piece later on to help with the lighting effects. I'll have more updates soon. I will also be working on the botany deck, the main crew rec-deck and also the officer's lounge and a few of the interior rooms where the open hatches are located.
6 new pics are in the DB Enterprise gallery. I have drilled out the details on the main deflector housing as well as begun on a scratch build hanger deck. I have aquired a 2nd DB Enterprise model Through another client of mine and am awaiting one more kit so I will now be working on 4 models at the same time. They will all be built pretty close together so they will all be at the same building stage at the same time. The updates might be a little farther apart now but I am still working on these projects, so keep checking for updates.
Update for the DeBoers Reliant project.
Finally I have new pics #'s 5 - 13 in the photo gallery. The Reliant is not as difficult as the Enterprise model, but there are a lot of challenges for this kit as well. In this update I've been mostly drilling out all of the viewports and getting the pieces ready for lighting and assembly. This is a really cool model and I'm really enjoying the build. I'll have more pics soon! See ya then!
I have added 8 new Pics in the DB Enterprise album. I do have to say that this is NOT the PL enterprise kit at all. Even though there are fewer pieces to build the model, there is a lot more drilling and sanding to do just to get the model started. Definately take your time on this model. It should not be rushed at all. Hope you enjoy the updates. Will have more soon.
Well, work has finally begun. I have 12 new pics in this update, 11 for DBE and 1 for DBR. This build is quite different from the PLE kit. All of the portholes and viewports as well as the hatches and the hanger bay need to be drilled out on both kits. This is what I've mainly been working on. The DBE has much more work that needs to be done on it than the Reliant, So I will be having updates of DBE first. Both ships need some additional scribing done as there are a few hatches missing on the saucer section. It is actually good to have the PL kit nearby for reference. An interesting thing about these kits are the metal saucer supports and plating used to support the warp engines. They both should definately have all parts test-fitted before assembling. I've been finding that a lot of them do not match up to well and need to be contoured to fit. The engineering hull has already been assembled by DeBoers and the bottom of the hull needs some serious re-working. Additional puttying and sanding will need to be done as well as some more scribing. The kit comes scribed on the bottom as 1701-A version just FYI. I should have the DBE holes finished by the end of the month and the DBR will be closley behind. See you next update.
I am currently doing a lot of research before I start my builds of the DeBoers Enterprise and Reliant kits. There will be a lot of scratch building for the Enterprise including the Hanger bay, the botonay sections and the rec deck that was seen in ST:TMP. I'm pricing out different ways to light the models with low heat miniature fluorescent lights and EL lamps. I'm also doing some scale research for the detailing work that will need to be done on both models. The first actual work to be done on these kits will be to drill out all of the viewports as well as the hanger bay and other sections of the ship. I have some new and different tools to work with now so these projects will have slightly more details than the PL Enterprise project. As was stated in the last update Some of the first work will begin in early June. So keep checking for updates! See you soon!
Okay! It's official! I have a special set of projects to announce! I am now going to build 2 new starship models simultaneously. First will be a 46" DeBoers Refit USS Enterprise along with a new larger Drydock and also a DeBoers USS reliant From ST:TWOK. Both of these models will be highly detailed and lit. They are being built for a client of mine. I should be starting in both of them by the beginning of JUNE. I'm really looking forward to these builds as they will be the largest Starships I will have built and completed to date. I've already checked out both of these kits and they are very sturdy in construction. A lot fewer parts than the Polar Lights and AMT kits. There will be a lot more room to work on these kits. I have plenty of reference pics for the Enterprise, but I've only found the standard pics, about 4 or 5 of the Reliant Studio model. So if anyone has any good shots of the Reliant, please let me know. I'm just getting my work area prepped to handle the 2 Giant models. I have to build 2 work cradles to hold each of the models while they are being worked on. I'll let you know when the project(s) begin. Keep checking, I will begin posting pictures very soon!
In this update, I've built the harnesses and cradle assembles for the work bees and the cargo containers from scratch. There are very little reference pics or drawings of the cradles, so I took the best reference shot from ST:TMP of one of the work bees with the containers in tow that I could find and also a nice profile drawing of the work bee/cargo containers on an on line technical manual. They are all painted up and ready to be suspended in the drydock via very thin steel wires to add to the scale effect. Next update I will have pics of these mini models in place. See you then.
I have one new pic I've added to the Drydock gets a facelift album. In it are the 4 travel pods, 6 work bees and cargo containers that are 1/350 scale with the PL Enterprise. These pieces are a lot more detailed than the ones that come with the kit. They all have a lot of decals to be added but the finished product looks very nice. I'm now going to scratch build 6 harnesses that will be connected to the work bees so that they can haul the cargo containers around. Some of the harnesses will have the containers in them and others will be empty as though they were returning for another load. I have a lot more that I've added to the drydock as far as updates go.When I get all of these items installed with the drydock I'll post the new pics. Also, stay tuned for my next project announcement.
In my "Drydock Get's a facelift" update I've added 6 new pics. I've finally built the Plexiglass dust cover to protect the model. There are only a few more touches needed and this project will be finished.... again. I should have the rest of the display case finished within the week. See you next update.
I've added 6 new pics to the "Drydock gets a face lift" album. I've finished most of the major painting, I've added several dozen 1/350 scale workers and such to the drydock hanger bays the Enterprise hanger and a few of them floating around the outside of the ship. I've also suspended a couple of the travel pods from wire and positioned them in a couple places as was seen in ST:TMP. I've now begun adding Black Velvet to the display stand and soon will finish off the plexiglass case that will help protect the model. A Few more details and she will be all finished. See you in the next update.
I've added some new pics of the Drydock tower that connects the overhead modules to the gangway. Finally these and many other parts have been painted to match the rest of the drydock. I'll have a few more pics soon of some of the wiring that I've redone and repainted to make it look like it belongs as part of the dock. I'm also going to add some 1/350 scale workers to various parts of the model to add some scale. I'm also decaling a few more shuttle pods to add to the diorama. I also have to pin-point a short that's in the wiring of the starboard side light panels and fix that as well. I will also be building an LED circuit to allow the strobes on the refit model to flash rather than be static. That will be added and hidden inside the overhead module. I've left the wiring accessable in the module for that very purpose. I'll have some more updates soon. For the second time....heheh... this model will be finished soon.
I also want to thank some of my new members for their photo contributions to my site. It's good to know what others have collected and/or built!
See you next update~!
Sorry for the long delays. Due to the time of year and a few events going on in our lives, I've had to push the touch-ups of the Drydock model on hold for a time. In this update, I've begun straightening out and/or replacing the tension-rods that are a little warped or missing due to the stresses that are put on the models assembly. When I originally built this model I didn't realize that there would be this kind of stress from the weight of the panel frames. I figured the frames themselves would carry most of the burden. The fact that all of the panels are not entirely the exact same size doesn't help either. I've finished the port side of the dock and I will adjust as many of the starboard side rods as I can reach. I've also added some details to the gangway tower and will begin to rewire a few of the lighting effects to hide the wiring a little better. When I first started this project, I only created this model for photography purposes. Like a movie model builder I only built what was necessary or what would would be seen on the screen. I've also cut all of the plexi-glass pieces to encase the model and protect it from dust and other dirt. It's coming along much better now and I hope to have all of these updates finished soon. Thanks for following our site for updates and we'll have more to come in the next year! See you then~!
I've just about completed the modifications on the control panel. I've taken a few pics of the wiring job and the the drawer in its in and out positions. I still need to get a few more LEDs to replace the ones that weren't working properly on the panel. By next update I should have the front door attached the the display stand that will conceal the control panel when it's not in use. I can then start adding the rest of the updates on the display stand as well as some of the other details to the drydock model itself. See you next update!
Sorry for the long delays in my updates. I've had many things on my plate the last couple of months. I've put the NX-01 on hold for a bit and am now doing a facelift on the drydock and display case. I'm redoing the control panel so it can be hidden under the model and pulled out like a drawer when the controls are needed. I'm also adding a few more details to the armature/gangway, doing some painting work and adding about a dozen or so men in 1/350 scale to different areas of the dock. I'll have more updates on this in a few weeks. In the meantime I have 9 new pics in the photoalbum section under Drydock Gets a facelift. Let me know what you think!
In this update I've added the base coat to the hull and started spraying the steel color. I then Dulcoted that color so it would protect the steel color from the Aztec-ing process. Their are no real clear photos that I have of the exact pattern of the Aztec job. The one included with the building instructions is okay for reference, but why they printed reflections of light on this I don't understand. The box art is a reference pic, but it doesn't have the finer deteails that I would like to put into this build. The Aztec-ing is going to take quite a while to do, so bear with me on this. It may take several weeks just to get the top part of the saucer section done. See you next update!
And so it begins. Another new project! For this years project I am starting 1, possible 2 Polar Light NX-01 Enterprise kits. At this point I haven't decided how these kits are to be mounted, but they will have the same careful detailing as I did with the PL refit Enterprise. So far the kit seems to be very easy to assemble although there is a seating problem with one of the pylons for the engines. If anyone else has encountered this problem please let me know how you fixed it. It could be I just got a badly molded part. Anyway, this kit will be lighted so I've begun to opaque the entire ship to prevent light leaks. After which I will apply a base coat of Flat White so I can begin the Aztecing paint job with some colors I am not fond of working with, namely Steel and Aluminum. there's a lot to do on this kit, I love the heavier plastic that Polar Lights uses for these models. I'll have more pics in the next update. See you then!
Okay, Everyone! I'd like to welcome all of our newest members to our Website! I Appreciate you joining to keep up with the latest updates. I am now preparing to star my next project. At first I was going to do a twin Excelsior build an NX - 2000 from ST:III TSFS and the NCC - 2000 from ST:IV TUC along with the Enterprise B fom Generations. It was going to be a triple build of all three versions of the ship. While that is still a future plan, I've decided to put that on the back burner for now and begin a Double Enterprise NX-01 set. One will be for myself and the other for a customer. I'll let you know when I begin doing all of this. Right now I'm looking for paints and other materials to get this thing started. So, Stay tuned and I'll send the updates as soon as I get started. Thanks for staying with me!