Polar lights USS Enterprise NCC-1701
Star Trek The Motion Picture Refit
Round, flat, white, problem.
Saucer Lighting Shinnanegans...Part 1 Would You Believe
Well now, welcome back to the cheapskate version of the
Starfleet orbital shipyards known as the hellhole gang!
So, last time it was getting around to the saucer spotlighting.
Now as is the problem with the top of the saucer..
In fact the problem with a lot of this ship is the assumed points
for spotlight emitters.
Now the top saucer has a large light splash at the
front showing the registry and a smaller one at the rear just
under the VIP lounge windows.
With me so far?
Well there is no way that the forward light splash could
come from the areas it is assumed to be,
i.e. the three slits just below the bridge dome with the design/kit as is.
Granted I know they lit the spotlight splash on the
effects model from the outside but that's not really an option here.
So then, open area in the foil and phaser bank shadow done,
time to get all airbrush on it.
Namely in silver.
This was the start and the result after some paint flinging fun.
Ok, it's a start.
So first was some business to attend to on the outside.
Namely the VIP lounge windows, phaser banks and some detail.
So first the phaser banks were removed to make them
flush with the hull as they should be.
Then to put back some detail around the front of the B/C deck section
which had been previously removed,
also some clear epoxy filled in the windows.
Ok, time to put in the VIP lounge windows.
Kit part scrapped and replaced with the part from the PNT photo-etched
fret along with some clear styrene.
Applied, puttied, smoothed in, grey paint to check for surface defects,
repeat a couple of times and done.
First up, the lighting for the three slits just below the bridge dome.
One 3mm 700mcd diffuse white LED for the low lighting and
two 5mm 11000mcd clear white LED's for the main lighting.
Attached to some white card with foil tape back.
Simply sealed in and the VIP lounge also fitted in.
The white squares are just paper hot glued in for insulation of the connections.
That sorted then to the B/C deck lighting.
One strip of 2mm thick clear styrene fitted out with four 3mm diffuse white LED's.
Two pointing straight up and two pointing aft.
The foil will do all the light bouncing about needed to illuminate
the VIP lounge to an acceptable level.
Then a bit of white card, tape backed to diffuse
the white light around the interior.
This sealed it all in and not forgetting a lighting test.
So on to the rear spotlight first,
the one under the VIP lounge windows.
The area had already been cleared of foil tape
and the edges airbrushed in silver.
Three 5mm LED's for this one,
installed on a strip of 2mm clear plastic like so.
With a fair dab of epoxy putty and more white card along with
a few lumps of foil tape,
duly installed and boxed in.
Now for the front spotlight splash.
Now in the past this normally needed more than a few LED's to make it happen.
As it goes I decided to give the
10mm white LED's a go on this as they worked rather well on the Enterprise E
I did some time back.
Also they have about half as much light output again
as the 5mm white ones.
For this gig, I used just 6 of them arranged like so....
The 10mm LED's were angled in so the main bulk of the light
covered the area closest to the B/C deck section.
This whole deal was light boxed and sealed in
pretty much the same fashion as the rear spotlight splash.
Then came the inevitable lighting test with a few 9v batteries duly hooked up.
So first with lights off,
then window lighting as such then the main spotlighting.
As you will see there is light coming from the three slits under the bridge dome
that brightens as the main spotlighting is switched on.
Well not too shabby.
All the lighting edges and the overall effect will
be softened by exterior paintwork.
A task which as I have said before will be done by
someone else so at least i'm saved that problem.
...i'll chicken out with the best of 'em given half a chance...
well less than half but I think you get my drift.
Well that concludes part 1, part 2 on the next page so
i'll see you lot on that thar page, go easy all!