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Old 12-16-2013, 09:07 AM
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Default One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

I'm building a one-sixth studio scale (or about 1/500th scale) model of the 11 foot Enterprise. This model will be similar to my Phase II Enterprise model in that it will be a study model for a set of plans of the 11 foot studio model as a model. Also, this model will be similar to my Phase II Enterprise model in that it will include (at a slightly smaller scale) techniques I'll be planning on using when building my one-to-one scale replica of the 33 inch Enterprise (which I'll most likely rent a garage to build that one in next spring).

So what will be different about this model (and the plans) from other models (and plans) of the Enterprise?
This model will be intended to show what the studio model looked like from the blue screen side while it was being filmed for TOS. I'm planning on documenting (and replicating) what was (and wasn't) there on the side we didn't see in TOS (and was painted over by the first Smithsonian restoration).

What will be used for plans?
Back in 2009 I started working on a set of plans for the 11 foot model (primarily in it's first pilot configuration). Even after I put that project on hiatus, I continued to make notes and refine the contours. I plan on using those elements as a starting point and using the building of the model to help bring together a set of plans. What I'll most likely do is a generalized set of plans to start with and then address the specifics of the first pilot, second pilot and series configurations... though maybe not as a single set of plans when released (most likely a set of plans for each configuration). These plans may not be good for those wanting drawings of the idealized fictional starship Enterprise, but for those interested in the actual physical artifact, these plans should at least be entertaining.


And lets get started...

Right off the bat I started collecting together the things I would need to do this build...


The primary hull is to be based on my contour studies of the 11 foot studio model, so it'll be fully scratch built. To do this I'll be turning the shapes out of hydrocal, getting the surface to the state I want, including engraving some elements, and then using that as a master. To do the turning I built two scree boxes and started adding foamcore board approximations of the shapes to them. I also started in on the bridge/B/C deck structure.


Put a little more time into the scree boxes and sculpting the bridge/B/C deck structure.


Below are images of the first two steps in turning the lower primary hull. Also, because the bridge/B/C deck structure hangs over the slope of the top of the primary hull, I built the master about a third taller than it needed to be. The final part will get trimmed down to the correct height and shape. Still, I lowered the master in a sheet of foamcore board to show the approximate look of the final part.


Started in on the upper primary hull and continued to work on the surface of the lower primary hull.


And that is about where I'm at so far. I'm moving quickly on this because I'm wanting to make a bunch of silicon molds of key parts all at the same time... including some parts I need for my Phase II Enterprise.
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Last edited by Shaw; 04-23-2014 at 01:55 AM.
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Old 12-18-2013, 02:36 PM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

Spent a little more time on getting the surfaces to about 99% of where I wanted them, then brushed over both masters with Elmer's Glue (watered down by about 50%) to help seal them. Applied two coats and let that dry, then gave them their first primer pass to see how things were standing (about where I wanted, so no surprises so far).

Here is a few shots of the parts after I hit them with primer.

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Old 12-18-2013, 05:16 PM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

Someone on another forum ask me to go into more detail on the process I'm using to make the primary hull, so here is the process broken down a little more (I just wasn't sure if anyone was really interested in that much detail).

So the starting point was the contour of the primary hull, which I divided into a top and bottom curve. From those I printed out copies and used them to cut pieces of styrene with those shapes (I used a safety pin to trace the contours and then broke the plastic along the etched curve). Because I wanted to get the edges as clean as possible, I used pretty thin styrene (0.02") but re-enforced it so it would be rigid enough for my needs.

I attached the pattern piece to thin styrene tube to pivot the pattern around when making the shapes.

The boxes in this case are made of foamcore board. Ideally you'd use wood or thick plastic... something firm to make sure the base surface stays perfectly flat. I live in an apartment so I improvised. To keep the main surface flat (because foamcore board can warp) I built it up on a 1 inch base wall with additional supports underneath to keep it flat. I also added support for the styrene tube to make sure that it was sticking up straight out of the top surface at 90 degrees.

Because I was planning on turning the surfaces out of hydrocal and wanted them to cure in a reasonable time period, I built up an approximation of the final shape out of additional pieces of foamcore board. So in this case I'd only need enough hydrocal to fill in the stair steps and complete the surface.

Before I used the hydrocal, I sprayed on a number of coats of Krylon Crystal Clear Gloss over the boxes and the foamcore approximations so that they would be protected from the water in the hydrocal (otherwise, I'd have had problems pretty quickly after applying it).

As I started to apply the hydrocal, I turned the styrene shapes to help form the surface contours. after a couple passes I got to within about 80% of the shapes I wanted, so I set them aside to cure for about 24 hours. After that I went back and used HobbyLite Filler to address the additional surface imperfections (again using the shapes to help reach the contours I wanted).

Once I felt like I was really close (about 99% of what I wanted) that was when I coated the model with Elmer's Glue to seal and even out the surface. After I was sure that had dried fully, I started in with the first primer coat (I use light gray Rust-oleum Automobile Primer). I'm now going back and working on the surface with 3M Bondo Glazing & Spot Putty to get the surface to 100% of what I want.

From there I'll add some surface details (not much though) and then build up a wall around the final surfaces to pour the silicon rubber into. Once that sets I'll build up a jacket shell (most likely using AMACO Sculptamold, a cellulose-based paper maché, because it sets very strong but is not very expensive). I should be able to pull the whole thing (silicon rubber molds and jacket) away from the box and I can make my final model parts from them (using Alumilite White similar to how I made my warp nacelles for my Phase II Enterprise).

So this is how the setup looks with the turning shapes in place (even though I'm currently working on the putty/sanding aspect right now).


The thing is, the technique for getting this type of shape isn't a new one. In fact it is basically the same one used to build the original 11 foot Enterprise model back in 1964 (check the bottom set of images on the linked page). And in their case the primary hull is almost 60" across compared to 10" for my model.
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Old 12-18-2013, 05:44 PM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaw View Post
(I just wasn't sure if anyone was really interested in that much detail)
I for one appreciate your showing all the pics of how you're doing what you're doing. I've learned quite a bit from watching how you're building your Phase II E, and it's going to be wonderful watching you build this ship.

Thank you.
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Old 12-18-2013, 10:31 PM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

I'm with Dave----the more detailed the explanation, the better!

And you're very good at explaining----carry on!
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Old 12-19-2013, 10:08 PM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

Thanks guys!

Yeah, because I don't build a lot of models I usually start out with a basic concept and then improvise to get it to work within the project I'm working on. So a lot of times I'm thinking things should work, but until I try I'm really not sure.





Onto the secondary hull.

So looking at the progress I've made on the primary hull in less than two weeks, I think it becomes clear why I look at the primary hull of the Phase II Enterprise model I'm working on as a mistake. I spent almost 4 months reworking the AMT/ERTL Refit primary hull (mainly because it wasn't that close a match to the actual Refit's contours) when I could have gotten what I wanted much faster starting from scratch (with the caveat that it would have added on almost $100 extra to the more than $500 I've invested in that model). And the secondary hull of that model was arguably worse as far as sucking up time and energy (though I am very happy with how both hulls turned out in the end).

Given that, one might suspect that I would avoid going down the modification path again. But here is the thing, the AMT/ERTL Cutaway has the best nacelle pylon support attachment setup I've seen. I have made three models using this secondary hull (in various degrees of modification) and I've never had to glue the support pylons to the secondary hull. So on both my first attempt and second attempt at a two-thirds scale 33 inch Enterprise the nacelle support pylons aren't glued into place. And the same was true for my Constellation model which was made up of spare parts from when I built my first attempt at the Enterprise.

So I'm going to use the AMT/ERTL Cutaway secondary hull and nacelle support pylons as a foundation for this model's secondary hull. Where am I going to get these parts?

Remember I mentioned the Constellation above. Almost since the day I started putting her together she has served as a guinea pig for things I wanted to try out but didn't want to risk on one of my major builds. For example, when I wanted to see if drawing grid lines in white pencil would give me the effect I thought they would, I tried it on the Constellation first before doing it to the Republic. Well, she is the donor for the secondary hull and nacelle support pylons (and fronts of the nacelles themselves). I removed the nacelles and supports (again, they weren't glued in, so not a big deal) and then cut the model apart at the base of the dorsal (which I don't need). I then cut apart the secondary hull along the front (because I'll need to lengthen the secondary hull by 0.6 inches), then broke the pieces apart to remove the internal cutaway elements and cut off the hangar deck and fantail (which I'll build from scratch).

One of the things I can't use in this case is the deflector assembly because there isn't any part that is even close to the right size. So all that has to be scratch built as well. And I have to remove the pendant channel on the left side because it wasn't there on the 11 foot model (and create a channel on the bottom which was missing from this kit's design).

The support pylons also need modifications. While they are almost the right width, they are a little thin. This is actually a good thing as the right side support I need to remove the physical grills (on the 11 foot model those were just painted on) and I need to reconstruct the ones on the left side support.

Right now there isn't really a lot to show, just a bunch of pieces cut apart. I haven't started to add on the modifications yet.
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Old 12-23-2013, 01:32 PM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

I've been plugging away on a number of areas, mostly nothing visually interesting, but I did start in on the rear end cap for the nacelles. It is a fun challenge to try to match the correct contours and sizes. As with the front of the nacelle, I'll make one master and then cast two for the model.

Here is a side view looking at the contours and hemisphere size (so I can compare against my references)...

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Old 12-28-2013, 07:40 PM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

Getting styrene to keep the shape I wanted was an interesting challenge. Turning a flat piece into a tube isn't much of a problem; bending, heating and in the end gluing. The nacelle end caps aren't tubes because most of them don't make it all the way around to be attached, so those areas want to revert to a more flat shape. The solution I found was to cut out circular pieces of styrene the size of the inner diameter, then trim them to the hight I needed and glue them in place while the outer part is in the correct shape. Those pieces would provide the tension needed to keep the main part from bowing out. And by adding in another couple flat pieces I was able to make a stair step interior, so when I filled the opening to make the end surface, I didn't use as much material.

Here is my end cap next to a DLM end cap for sizing comparison (which explains why I needed to scratch build rather than modify an existing part)...

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Old 12-31-2013, 05:02 PM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

I started in on the dorsal today.

This was a bit more challenging than previous dorsals in trying to match the geometry. The 33 inch dorsal was very straight forward, and while a bit more of a challenge, the Phase II dorsal had the advantage that I was able to find a styrene tube that was the right diameter for the leading edge.

In the case of the 11 foot's dorsal, I'm taking two pieces of styrene tube that are close to the correct diameter and spreading them by making a cut along an edge and putting a sheet of styrene into it. It seem to work and helps hold the pieces in the positions I need while I cross check the geometry.

I think I made pretty good progress.

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Old 01-02-2014, 06:50 PM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

Put some time in on the secondary hull yesterday and today. Most of that time was researching the deflector assembly. It wasn't one of the areas I had spent much time on in the past, so I needed data before I could start building the parts. While I have lots of photos, as it turned out the best reference for taking measurements was the x-rays commissioned by the Smithsonian back in June of 1999.

Once I had the measurements I started cutting out the pieces I needed from styrene. After applying a little heat to get them to bend nicely, I assembled the parts to see how they worked together.

During this time I also started in on modifying the rest of the secondary hull... which at this stage is more about removing elements rather than adding them. The most significant alteration is the lengthening of the hull by more than half an inch.

I was curious to see how all these smaller elements were going to plug into the bigger picture of the secondary hull, so I assembled what I had (mainly letting gravity hold it together). It feels like it is coming together as I had planned.

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Old 01-15-2014, 08:32 AM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

I decided to re-sculpt the front of the secondary hull to get the contours I wanted. Here is where I'm at so far...


The deflector assembly is still just a bunch of pieces set together (part of the reason I photograph it on end), I most likely won't glue the rings together until I'm closer to painting them.

I put a little more time in on sculpting the rear of the secondary hull yesterday and then hit a bunch of the parts with primer to get a feel of where I'm at. This is the result (again, things aren't glued together, they are either held together by fit or by gravity)…




So I'm wondering, how much of this is more than you'd want to know?

As with my research on the 33 inch model (which was mainly trying to nail down how that model looked by the end of the first season of TOS), it is important to understand the physical changes to the 11 foot model as it transitioned from the original pilot version to the second pilot version (the inclusion of internal lighting) to the series version… and then how the elements had to be arranged based on how the model was being shot during the series.

For example, I know that there has been some debate on whether the model was originally intended to be shot from both sides in it's original first pilot configuration. Some people believe it wasn't, some people believe it was… and they are right, both sides. Some of the physical features were not replicated on both sides, but some elements were added (or replicated by painting) to allow the model to be filmed from just beyond the front or rear center lines and panned back to her good side. The registry number and pendant on the port nacelle and the pendant on the port side of the secondary hull were originally there in case the camera got that far around. Similarly, the inner nacelle channel on the starboard nacelle was elaborately replicated as a painted feature (which was sadly destroyed by the first Smithsonian restoration and hadn't been fixed fully in the 1992 restoration), which I'll be doing as a decal (because it is easier that way).

This is the type of narrative I was planning on holding off on until I put the plans together, but it might be something you guys are interested in while watching the build. Specially when you see me purposely leaving features off this model that most people would add in.
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Old 01-16-2014, 01:25 AM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

I've missed being here and seeing this work!
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Old 01-17-2014, 12:46 AM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

I'm always interested in your input. I'm attacking this model a little differently than both my Phase II Enterprise and last attempt at the 33 inch TOS Enterprise. While it is adding in a number of additional steps, it more closely mirrors how I plan on building a final one-to-one scale replica of the 33 inch TOS Enterprise in the near future.



Sort of an update...
I know I brought up the fact that I compromised in using foamcore board to build the foundation boxes for the primary hull halves, but I realized that it might be interesting to see what I did in constructing them to avoid having the top warp.


Even though it worked fine for me, there are better ways of doing this that are less risky.
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Old 01-18-2014, 03:58 AM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

Spent a little more time on the secondary hull yesterday. Most of it was on the rear section. I'm pretty happy with where it is going, so I'll most likely spend some time on the front and mid sections this weekend.

Generally, when sculpting this type of stuff I aim at hitting key features and then go back and work on overall finish (while trying not to undo what I've achieved to that point). I've been doing essentially the same thing with both the top and bottom primary hull masters, working out small imperfections while not losing the larger scale contours I worked hard to get.

Here is some shots of the secondary hull with a few parts in place so I could do comparisons with reference images…


I still need to start the front nacelle master and finish off the rear nacelle master (which needs the ring part before where the main nacelle body starts). At this point I'm planning on making molds of those, the primary hull halves, the bridge/B/C deck structure and the intercooler loops. And I'm close enough on all those that I'll have my wife order the silicon rubber this weekend (which will mean I'll also be starting back up on the Phase II Enterprise again).

I did split my time up yesterday between this and another project… I wanted to see if I could make a reasonable tribble. I had been playing around with ideas for a pattern and tried it out yesterday. Here is the result (my new tribble with our old one)…


The old one has a sound box in it that makes a cute tribble noise when you squeeze it, which my new one doesn't. But at this point I just wanted to see if it would come together nicely.
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Old 01-18-2014, 07:03 AM
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Default Re: One-Sixth Studio Scale TOS Enterprise

"I wanted to see if I could make a reasonable tribble."



Looks reasonable to me!

Like your Phase II piece, I'm really enjoying this build Shaw.
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