As some of my readers will have gathered, I am a Star Trek fanboy, especially the series <abbr title="Star Trek: The Next Generation">ST:TNG</abbr>. This was the first Star Trek show that I watched as a child. Since then, I've been fascinated by the Enterprise D and her technology. Now that I am a grown man, I can indulge myself. About 8 or 9 years ago, I bought and built a custom model kit of the Enterprise D, the 1/1400 scale AMT. I built it with custom fiber optic lighting for the windows and LEDs for the Nacelles, Impulse Engines, and the navigation lights. Unfortunately, that model was destroyed during a move and didn't take many pics or document the build process. I will admit that this model wasn't painted or had decals since I didn't have any experience.
Since then, I have wanted to build another one, but with more detail and screen accurate. Of course I wanted to design and install custom lighting and a few more features that popped in my head. But this time, I will document the build and share it so maybe someone would use my build as motivation and create their own ideas.
There are a few model kits to choice from, the latest and greatest to the older, less detailed kits. Since I'm a poor man, I had to choose the older kits, namely the AMT #6619 from 1988. This kit is simplistic and easy to build, but still has some neat textures and for the most part, has some nice features. Namely, enough room for electronics and LEDs.
To start, here is a break down of the features and build outline:
- Fiber Optics
- 1.0mm Window
- 1.5mm Side Glow for Nacelles
- 5mm White Ultra Bright for Fiber Optics
- 3mm Green/Red/White for Navigation Lights
- 3mm Red for Torpedo Launchers
- 5mm Red for Impulse Engines
- Custom Sound Effects
- Warp Sound
- Torpedo Sound
- Ambient Sound effect (background noise from the bridge)
- Don't forget Captain Picard voicing the ST Moto! ("Space, the final frontier. These are the...")
- Powered by rechargable LiPo
- Effects Controlled via Bluetooth from smart phone (Android)
- Custom base station/stand for control without smart phone
At this time (12/28/20), most of these have been implemented and functioning. Electronics have been designed and I am waiting for prototype PCBs from the fab.