Damaged U.S.S. Enterprise NCC-1701 Constitution Class Starship

Model by Ron E.

 

Box Stock (Conversion)

AMT/Ertl kit 8617 and WARP resin conversion kit

 Model Specifications:
Scale = 1/535
Length = 50 cm
Width = 27 cm
Height = 13.5 cm

 
In "Star Trek III: The Search for Spock" Capt Kirk employs the self-destruct in order to prevent Klingons from taking over the USS Enterprise NCC-1701.

To construct this model that represents the final moments of the USS Enterprise, I bought an after-market resin model kit (WARP/Comet Miniatures from the U.K.) of the damaged saucer to be added to the AMT/ERTL USS Enterprise kit. Working on this model at various times (in between other models), it has been a project that has taken me more than 10 years to finish, but is now finally completed. My patience and effort paid off, as this model recently took First Place in it's category (Science-Fiction) at a locally run Model Show & Contest.
   
In addition to the resin saucer, some details of the plastic kit were altered in order to correct errors. The most time consuming task was spent in correcting the etched "panels" that are on both the plastic and resin kits. These panels are incorrect, and as such, needed to be puttied over and sanded in order to produce a smooth hull. 

The dorsal for this model has a bit of a slight "lean" to port, which unfortunately, is not obvious until after the model has been completely assembled. This was corrected by adding thin styrene strips along the port side base of the dorsal, so that the dorsal would be "vertical" when attached to the secondary hull
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The top of the dorsal, which serves as the saucer support base was thickened with a couple of sheets of styrene on each side. Additionally, each side of the complete dorsal also had a sheet of styrene added to it so as to provide a thicker look, and all of the windows on each side were drilled out in their correct location. Interior bulkheads for a "torpedo launch bay" were added inside the dorsal so they could be seen through the blown out hatch on the port side of the dorsal.
 
The nacelle pylons were strengthened with additional strips of styrene at the base, providing a thicker base that was basically "wedged" into place so that the nacelles themselves would not wobble (a particular problem with this model).

Additional "battle damage" was added to the secondary hull and torpedo launcher (port side) with a Dremel tool. The deflector grid lines on the sides and bottom of the secondary hull were completely re-scribed so as to produce a pattern that closely matched the studio model.

The "Aztec" pattern on the saucer was done by using Walker Enterprise's photo-etched brass templates.
 
Photographs of the studio model were found on the internet, one set on the Starship Modeler website, the other on a generic Star Trek reference website, and they were an invaluable resource in completing this model. The studio model, while generally having an overall white appearance, actually has a multitude of several colors, all used in different shades and patterns. Using these website photographs as a guide, I drew out a close proximity matching pattern of the complex paint designs, and used it as a paint template for painting the model.
 
Although some of the colors selected turned out to be a bit dark for the model once the painting was completed, I was generally very pleased with the final result of my efforts. I was quite happy with the Engineering section forward of the nacelle pylons, which used several combinations of RAF Interior Green and Flat White FS37925. The area surrounding the navigational deflector used RAF Interior Green, Intermediate Blue FS35164, Armor Sand FS30277, and Camouflage Gray FS36622; all mixed in various ratios with Flat White FS37925.

The area behind the Engineering section (top of secondary hull, forward of shuttlebay) and the bottom of the secondary hull were both painted with various combinations of Camouflage Gray FS36622, Armor Sand FS30277 and Flat White FS37925, and the area underneath the shuttlebay was painted with combinations of Camouflage Grey FS36622 and Flat White FS37925. These areas were then given a light "mist" of Flat White FS37925 once all masking had been removed.
 
After all the colors had been painted, I finished by applying the overall "two-toned" white appearance to the saucer, nacelles, nacelles pylons, and secondary hull. From the experience of this process, I recommend to anyone building this model (specifically USS Enterprise NCC-1701-A) that the majority of masking and painting of the saucer and nacelles be done prior to assembling to the rest of the model.

Several protective coats of Future floor wax (50% Future, 25% Isopropyl alcohol, 25% water) were applied prior to applying the decals, and then a couple of more coats were added after the decals to seal them in place. The "charred" and battle damaged areas primarily seen on the starboard side of the secondary hull are decals, lightly airbrushed over with Flat Black FS37038. The destroyed saucer section was airbrushed Flat Black FS37038, the highlighted by dry brushing Flat White FS37925 and Orange (mixed one part Insignia Red FS31136 to three parts 1169 Mat Cavalry Yellow).
 

Photos by Stephen L.