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We've been conducting an extensive amount of research into the history & construction of the 11-ft Enterprise as part of the Smithsonian's restoration of the original model. We've had access to unpublished, privately-held photos, as well as interviews with eyewitnesses to the pre-restoration model. More information will be forthcoming as we continue the research, but I can share this about the nacelle domes:

Both the inside & outside of the original domes were sandblasted, giving them a rough texture to the touch. The inside & outside of each dome was lightly sprayed with a transparent coating of orange Pelikan-brand ink, resulting in a frosted orange appearance. The clear nacelle tabs were also frosted and sprayed with orange ink.

Each tab was held in place by a single brass cap nut with a silver thread screwed into it. If you want the exact color, just visit your nearest big-box hardware store and look at a brass cap nut.

There were way more than 10 light bulbs inside each nacelle, and we're still working on the exact number. The 5 steady amber lights in the Polar Lights kit give basically the correct appearance, but you could safely add a half-dozen more blinkers, if you can squeeze them in.

Like I said, more info will be forthcoming as we complete our research, so stay tuned.

Gary
 

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So the domes themselves had an orange tint to them originally, or this is what is being done to the replacements? If the former, I would not have realized the domes themselves were tinted. I thought all the effects was just due to the lighting and fan blades.
 

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So the domes themselves had an orange tint to them originally, or this is what is being done to the replacements? If the former, I would not have realized the domes themselves were tinted. I thought all the effects was just due to the lighting and fan blades.
It was the same with me. According to our eyewitness who disassembled the unrestored domes, they had been painted so expertly (probably by Matt Jefferies) that they looked like orange plastic that had been sandblasted. On your model, you'll want to duplicate a frosted, light orange appearance - not an orange orange. The ILM people and the experts on the museum's staff (many of whom are Trekkies) are going to duplicate whatever was on the original model, except with archivally-safe materials.

Gary
 

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Cool information, though when I clicked on the thread, I was thinking you were speaking of the original wood domes that were on the pilot(s) version. Those were apparently painted with Pelikan inks as well. Perhaps you are aware that one of those sold on Ebay recently; based on lack of any mention on forums such as this, I got the impression that the sale of that remarkable artifact flew under most people's radar.
It didn't fly under my radar, but it definitely flew over the size of my wallet!

Gary
 

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Fascinating stuff Gary. Like an archaeological data dig, the pieces are slowly being uncovered. :thumbsup::thumbsup:
 

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Fascinating stuff Gary. Like an archaeological data dig, the pieces are slowly being uncovered. :thumbsup::thumbsup:
Thanks. That's why I said in a yet-to-be-published piece that I feel like a sci-fi archaeologist.

Gary
 

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Thanks. That's why I said in a yet-to-be-published piece that I feel like a sci-fi archaeologist.

Gary
But that's exactly what it is. Only it's cinematic archaeology in Science Fiction. You're trying to reverse engineer based on the fragments on hand.

At least you have more to work with than the regretful remains of Irwin Allen filming miniatures. :)

You know, it always comes down to first principals. It's logical that the nacelle domes were tinted orange, because the second generation AMT Enterprise (when they added the lights to the nacelles) had amber/orangish domes. Given the closeness of the company to the production it would be logical to assume they were working from observed materials, yes?

If nothing else,it's an additional data point to consider. :)

I envy your journey, sir! I hope for a huge book or something at the end!
 

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But that's exactly what it is. Only it's cinematic archaeology in Science Fiction. You're trying to reverse engineer based on the fragments on hand.

At least you have more to work with than the regretful remains of Irwin Allen filming miniatures. :)
We've got much better than simple fragments - FAR better reference materials than previous restorers had.

You know, it always comes down to first principals. It's logical that the nacelle domes were tinted orange, because the second generation AMT Enterprise (when they added the lights to the nacelles) had amber/orangish domes. Given the closeness of the company to the production it would be logical to assume they were working from observed materials, yes?

If nothing else,it's an additional data point to consider. :)

I envy your journey, sir! I hope for a huge book or something at the end!
I doubt that the orange-tinted AMT nacelles were anything than a coincidence, because somebody at the company thought they looked orangey in pictures or on TV. A former AMT employee told that back in the bad old days, when AMT cranked inaccurate kits like the Galileo & Romulan BoP, the company's attitude was "Who gives a sh*t if the models aren't accurate? It's just stupid kids buying them".

Little did they realize that those "stupid" kids would still be buying Star Trek kits after they grew up & started getting gray hair!

Gary
 

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That makes it even more of a shame that it will not be restored as the original, with motorized blades.
That may or may not be an accurate quote. One of the articles even credited Rick Sternbach with designing the Refit Enterprise. Like I said before, stay tuned. :)

Gary
 

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A few articles I read mentioned a "reversible metal collar" to be placed in the seondary hull to stabilize it; can you elaborate Gary on how that would work, exactly? When I first read it, I was picturing a collar on the outside of the hull to keep it from peeling apart (akin to the bands on a barrel), which would be visible of course. Thank, Scott
You've got the the right idea, except the bands will be on the INSIDE. Malcolm Collum at the museum had the idea had the idea of putting bands inside the sec hull, through the openings in front & back, and museum's ingenious machinists came up with a couple of internal collars. I can't emphasize too much that the Smithsonian is staffed with a number of very bright people! Here's a photo of one of the collars inside the hangar bay, not installed permanently yet.

Gary

 

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Would screws then be used from the outside, and countersunk and covered up? However it works exactly, seems a clever way to ensure it holds together for many years to come.
No - the screws are completely internal, and you won't notice a thing from the outside.

Gary
 

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Fantastic info, Gary--thank you most kindly! Everything I've seen coming out of the NASM shows nothing but the utmost care and attention to detail being put into the restoration. This is truly an exciting time!

I'm also very glad that I haven't finished my 1/350 build, since more nuggets like this nacelle dome thing will surely be trickling out, in the months to come.
 

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There were way more than 10 light bulbs inside each nacelle, and we're still working on the exact number. The 5 steady amber lights in the Polar Lights kit give basically the correct appearance, but you could safely add a half-dozen more blinkers, if you can squeeze them in.
But you think 5 amber steady-on lights are right for the 1:350 kit? I'm reworking my custom circuit board for the engines now (with 5 blinking LEDs) so I can easily add a few more blinkers; are you saying 10-12 in total blinkers would be right for that scale?
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Fantastic info, Gary--thank you most kindly! Everything I've seen coming out of the NASM shows nothing but the utmost care and attention to detail being put into the restoration. This is truly an exciting time!

I'm also very glad that I haven't finished my 1/350 build, since more nuggets like this nacelle dome thing will surely be trickling out, in the months to come.
All I can say is DON'T do any painting on that sucker until we make some final decisions! Here's a hint: despite all stories to the contrary, the base color of the 11-footer was NOT greenish-gray.

Gary
 
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