Starting a build thread for the revell Germany voyager.
Before going into build plans though I have a question on the ship.
What colour are voyagers impulse engines, both intakes and exhausts. Now, this may seem like a pretty obvious thing, aka RED THEY ARE RED ARE YOU BLIND, and I will take this moment to concede that 100 percent they are red on the shows cg model, but my memory of them from early in the show was that they were whitish orange.
Now there are a bunch of great detail photos of the studio model but they are all unlit so all I can fall back to for evidence are these three promo images for the series from early on that all use the studio model.
Now in these images the intake at the very least looks orange /yellow.
so did the studio model have orange impulse engines or was it just for these promo shots? I have looked at some season 1 eps of voyager but at 360p I am looking at 2-3 pixels for the impulse engine colour....
When I started reading on this I wanted to try and make the model as accurate to the look of the studio model as possible (within reason ).
Bless my innocence.
So yeah the more I read about it the more I found out about its many inaccuracies be it production necessity for injection moulding or just plain wrong though I think a lot of what I find wrong with it may be more because it leans towards the cg model a lot more than the studio (to my eye.)
Change list to original model (with an eye to looking more like studio model)
Lowering the bridge deck.
The model looks much more like the cg models I have seen than the studio model. My plan here is to come up from underneath with a dremel and separate deck one and the slight lip in front of it from the rest of the model, before lowering it down till there is just a fraction of a lip at the front like the studio model.
Replacing the aero-shuttle.
Not planning on having this removable so planning to sand the current off and replace with one correctly shaped and built up from thin sheet material.
Total removal of escape pods.
I became aware that the pods on top of deck 2 were incorrectly placed from reading sternbachs criticism of the kit. However what I also noticed was that every single escape pod raised area is too big. I can see why this was done, because the pod decal and the trim surrounding it are one decal, and without something serious like microsol if the raised area did not raise up that trim area it might cause a lot of issues. The raised area on the 3d model is just the pod itself and not the red trim area so the result on the model is that the raised areas are a full mm bigger than they should be. I also noticed that at the very least one set of pods besides the bridge and the missing ones on neck are incorrectly placed, the furthest back on the saucer above the rim line. There is a theme here that gets repeated with the deflector where the model makers made a choice to space things evenly where they were meant to be offset. The pods are meant to be offset within the panel to one side but are evenly spaced instead. It sounds like a nit pick but it is probably the reason the deflector dish ended up incorrectly set which IS a big deal to me.
Anywho I mentioned the above because it was the flow of thought on the escape pods, and useful if someone planned to have the ship look more like the cg model. However luckily for my sanity I wont be attempting to file all the escape pods down by 1 mm a side. The big theme that differentiates the studio model from the cg for me is the sleekness of the ship. To that end when I started looking at the promo images and the close ups of the studio model I realised that the pods on the studio model are way less raised than on the cg model, like super thin sheet material or even a sticker maybe. Given how thin they are on a much much larger model I am inclined to dremel off the raised areas entirely and clean up with mr dissolved putty, applying the pods as decals only. Ditto for the transporter emitters, sanding off on top and filling in on bottom as I am 99.9 percent sure they too are paper thin or decals on the studio model.
The hull lines look too wide/deep for the scale of the model (at least if going for studio model look). Maybe they would end up a lot less pronounced if I was brush painting but since I am airbrushing I cant expect them to be reduced by any usable amount. The plan here is to deal with it on a line by line basis, sitting a piece of paper into the side of an existing line, dissolve puttying the line, then removing the card to leave a much thinner line where the old one was.
I know there are a bunch of missing windows on deck 2, and though I have not checked the secondary hull yet, the ones I am referencing here are a section of the saucer windows, which for reasons honestly unknown to me have been placed at a completely different height to all the other windows on the model. They lie between the rear saucer rct and the bay window, and are easy to spot once you are looking for them. They are the only windows on the saucer set in the lower third of their panel, and it is not the case on either the studio or cg models.
The plan here is to mark out the replacements, drill them and then dissolve putty the originals.
My understanding is they are a little high. If I can find a way to sand them down in a controlled manner I will. Otherwise with the saucer I could end up with uneven height along the length. In theory a small tool in a angular c shape could use the prongs of the 'c' to set the height and the concave surface of the c to set the sanding material in, to sand down till the prongs are level with the hull beside the strips.
I would really like to do this. Like the phaser sanding this is not something I want to try unless I can get a result which is consistent, and that means a tool. At first I thought I might need something heated, but I did some tests on the sprues with a needle nose pliers and very little pressure was needed to put a respectable mark into the material. At this point I am thinking that a modified staple remover will end up being suitable with a screw through it to set the depth of the mark to allow for consistency. Both phaser changes are dependent on those tools so they will probably be something I build early on to check feasibility.
I saw a pretty incredible phaser strip lighting rig on a voyager, done I think by a german guy. Now I don't know how they did it, but it looked realllllllllllly awesome and pretty much exactly like the show. I am pretty sure I cant do that, and that if the guy is selling it I cant afford it. XD
It looked fancy, like something you would do with an arduino or something. I can think of a way to 'cheap it' I think using a 4017 decade counter/ 555 circuit and some fiber optic, both of which I have. The strips have the virtue of being hollow, so especially if I sand them down a little I should be able to get light to pass through them and a thin layer of paint. Honestly though for me this would be the top end of my electronics knowledge, I will certainly try to make the circuit though and in theory multiple strips could be 'fired' at once from a single decade counter circuit via the optics. This is kind of a stretch goal/experiment so I wont beat myself up if it does not end up in the final model.
Sand down plates on top of deck 1 by 50 percent.
Replace aft torpedo launchers.
Round saucer rim sensor bays.
Tweak that little plate above the aft saucer sensor platform.
Add missing deck 2 windows.
Add missing windows at the rear between nacelles.
Scribe divisions between little square panels ala in front of bridge.
Remove raised panel lines on rear section of ship and replace with scribed in lines.
Recast and move little raised detail half cylinders on nacelle pivot line.
Fix starboard nacelle connector. ( This may just be an issue with warping on my kit or something but my starboard nacelle when fitted does not sit the same as the port. You know the way it slots into the nacelle, well the 'male' section on the starboard nacelle pylon is a lot thicker than the port side one when placed side to side, that is the best way I could explain it.
Raise position of deflector inside deflector housing (centred on model , should be offset vertically.)
Take sharp point off underside forward hull shapes.
Sharpen/replace underside secondary hull details (octagons etc)
Add domes on impulse engines.
Build light boxes for fancy windows.
add styrene dividers on top of bridge dome
add styrene strips to back of nacelles
add styrene half rounds to deck 2
detail aux deflector stem
replace/rework front facing detail of nacelle pivot
add material to sides of bridge to widen slope of bridge dome to match studio model
sharpen internal corners of deflector housing to match studio model
angle saucer fancy windows outward (model appears designed to sit them vertically, but they are angled on studio model)
sort out all the airlocks present and missing
slightly round lower leading edge of saucer
drill strobe and nav holes
sand off injection moulding traces
Print waterslide decals for window boxes
Things I am pretty sure I will not do
shifting entire deck 1 forward to fix the spacing behind bridge. (Already messing with height of deck 1 in a major way
Currently beyond tempted to glue the entire nacelle assemblies in impulse mode position. I really have no idea how that pivot system will last over the long haul. I really don't like how the system applies stress along the seams on the parts, and am kind of worried that wear and tear would lead to the tab being worn down and causing droopy nacelles, or the stress popping the seam on the parts. Going to warp would be an awesome thing to have but right now I feel like I would be trading long term satisfaction for the very odd occasion I would want to send it to warp. If other people have had this model for 4-5 years and used it a lot in terms of clicking the engines to warp and have had any issues with it or not I would love to know.
Back of nacelle shape
I know from a plan view the backs of the nacelles should sweep back in a bit, but fixing that competently is above my current skill grade especially as it involves clear parts. And I have only one pair of nacelles. XD That said if anyone has tips on fixing them or has fixed them I would love to know about it.
I think that covers everything in terms of changes.
In terms of electronics, I have a good portion of the circuits designed and tested. I have a circuit for red impulse engines, but if I can confirm orange were used on the model I will go with that. Premade electronics for the torpedoes phasers etc are more or less off the table due to cost, so unless I can source schematics for those versions I will be going with solid on off lighting on them or maybe a fade in. I will probably grab one of those 5 pushbutton sound card boards everyone is ranting about and if it is as easy as people say I will drop that in. And will run a 555 timer for the strobe on a warm white led attached to fiber optics. I played with the idea of adding a white high brightness to the middle of the nacelle to do a warp flash but if I am locking the nacelle angle down there seems little point to it.