Continuing to assemble the NCC-1701-D.  Discovered some other little tips:

  • Filing is a skill, the better it is learned the less radical shaping will be necessary later
  • Sometimes filing leaves a rough edge - you can give this a sudden smoothness by applying the plastic-melting glue, and letting it dry.  Come to think of it, I can probably accomplish the same with fine grain sanding material.
  • When taking pieces off the plastic tree, err on the side of leaving too much plastic on the model part - it's easier to file something down then it is to fill gaps.
  • When I left a gap (above), I tried to fill it with Red Modeler's putty - big lump, then shape it with a file when it dries.  Noted that it has to be more than dry to the touch, it has to be dry inside too.  Takes no time for it to dry out, but takes about 30 minutes to an hour before you can file it, or it'll be like filing silly putty.
  • Plastic melting glue doesn't work on transparent things
  • Transparent glue for transparent things takes an hour to dry
  • You have to get creative in tacking those things down for final gluing


   I forgot to install the forward deflector array prior to lower hull assembly - I'll have to crack a couple of strategic points and get that puppy in there... (turns out I didn't need to crack anything, I was able to slip it in from the opening in the hull).

   This is where I am so far.  I also discovered that a container of toothpicks is perfect for holding small parts (the deflector array consisted of two parts that needed to be glued).  I'm going to putty the main and secondary shuttle bay doors so that I can get a perfect seam (I'm an optimist).  You can see the primary shuttle bay in the 'creative' picture above, top-right corner.

   I've also discovered that the left (facing forward) nacelle is off by five degrees.  Bending that sucker into shape is going to be difficult, I think, don't know how I'm going to do that yet.