Amt uss reliant

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Moska

Well-Known Member
THE AMT MODEL KIT

For the construction of this model I used the first version of the AMT model. The kit had been sleeping on a shelf for more than 20 years.

The model kit presents several problems that I had to solve:

1- The height of the main body is too short. It's necessary to increase that height approximately 1.5 mm in all its perimeter. I corrected this problem using styrene strips.

2- The rear bays come in the kit as two pieces of clear plastic. These pieces could be painted masking properly the areas through which the light should come out, but I found it more efficient to create new pieces of metal with perforated light zones. For this I used a 0.5 mm aluminum sheet.

3- The perimeter of the main body of the ship has very ugly steps and has not windows. It was necessary to sand the entire contour to leave a smooth surface and then drill all the windows.
Something similar to the previous thing happens with the two zones of front windows of the upper side. In this case, I sanded these surfaces until I removed those walls and replaced them with new ones made of plastic with their perforated windows.

4- The upper control bridge also comes without windows and it was necessary to eliminate these areas and replace them with new plastic walls with windows.

5- For the interior of the lower bridge, the kit proposes a piece of transparent plastic. I didn't use it, I did the same as on the upper bridge.

6- The kit decals are of poor quality, very incomplete and out of size many of them. I used the JT-Graphics decals sheet.

7- Finally, I add some detail on the exterior of both bridges and the two grids that are on both sides of the back of the ship.




ILLUMINATION

Although there are several electronic kits on the market, I like to do things by myself, so the lighting system was created by me. I searched for information on the net and tried several types of circuits and connections until I found a way to make everything work correctly. This way of working is undoubtedly more laborious and expensive than buying one of these kits, but it has the advantage that you can adjust everything to your liking and, in addition, you can learn something by the way. It’s powered with a voltage of 12 V.



PAINTING


All fans of Sci-Fi starships models know that the ships of the Star Trek Federation wear a complex pattern of colors that have been dubbed as "the aztec pattern". It's a pattern designed to provide a rich finish of shades and nuances to the paint of its fuselages.
As far as I know, only in the first movie "Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979)" did they use iridescent colors to decorate the fuselage of the USS ENTERPRISE. These iridescent colors have the property of behaving in different ways depending on the angle of incidence of light on them: They can go from neutral shades more or less dark, to be invisible, to show inverse colors and, in the most effective angle of light, to show metallic tones with blue, red, green and gold colors.
Apparently, they stopped using this finish in the models of the films because, that behavior of the iridescent paintings, negatively affected when shooting the models on a blue screen for scenes with special effects.

Even so, I wanted to try that type of finish on my model. So I painted my USS RELIANT -Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982)- with an Aztec pattern made with iridescent colors.

Once again, although there are self-adhesive masks available on the market to paint the Aztec pattern on this model, I prefer to make my own design and use my own masks. I must say that this work took me a lot of time and it was really tedious. First of all, the time invested in the design of that pattern adapted to my model and, above all, the endless hours I spent carefully cutting those masks for the four iridescent colors that cover almost all surfaces of the ship.

Once the Aztec pattern was painted, I applied a coat of gloss varnish to place the excellent JT-Graphics decals.

When all the previous work was dry, I protected all the work with two layers of Marabu semi-matt varnish. Between both layers I sanded all the surfaces with water sandpaper to achieve a smoother finish.

I’m very satisfied with the final result but, I think that I will never complicate my life again until that level.

I hope you enjoy the result.



Moska-USS RELIANT-001.jpg
The new aluminum rear bays.


Moska-USS RELIANT-002.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-003.jpg
Enlightening the nacelles.


Moska-USS RELIANT-004.jpg
I got the small yellow lights on the backs of the nacelles using yellow rectangular leds.


Moska-USS RELIANT-005.jpg
For the yellow lights of the saucer I inserted small triangles of transparent yellow plastic.


Moska-USS RELIANT-006.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-007.jpg
The "guts" of the interior lighting system.


Moska-USS RELIANT-012.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-011.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-010.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-009.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-008.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-013.jpg
Masking, masking, masking…


Moska-USS RELIANT-014.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-015.jpg
Color panels profiled with fine lines drawn with a hard-tipped pencil (2H).


Moska-USS RELIANT-017.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-016.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-018.jpg
The iridescent effect.


Moska-USS RELIANT-019.jpg
Some aging jobs.


Moska-USS RELIANT-020.jpg
I built a support to join the nacelles with the upper arch to make sure they were level and parallel.


Moska-USS RELIANT-021.jpg Moska-USS RELIANT-022.jpg
As I'm a very clumsy guy, I burned the flashing led in the torpedo pod. And I was forced to cut the pod it to be able to replace it. I built a new wooden support that allowed me to make the cut without forcing the set of pieces together. Fortunately, the repair was done without problems and, once it was putty and painted again, the scar is invisible.


Moska-USS RELIANT-023.jpg
The base for my model with an engraved mirror plate and the Star Trek logo cut in 1 mm aluminum sheet.
 

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Keiko

Sr Member
WOW! That looks fabulous and perfect, even nicer than ILM's actual model. I dream of getting that result for both my Reliant and Enterprise. I'm very interested in your process. If I can bombard you with some questions:

-what iridescent paint did you use?
-more details on your clear coating/sealing process - it looks like the iridescence still reads well after decals. Are you saying the Marabu product is on top of the decals as a final coat?

Just stunning, absolutely stunning!
 

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DanielB

Sr Member
Holy ****. That is the hands down best Star Trek model I've ever seen that wasn't a studio model. Just and absolutely incredible piece! Wow.
 

bwize

Sr Member
Nice job! Love the Aztec paneling and detailing. Very clean and professional looking. I really like the lights too, not too bright, perfect!
 

Moska

Well-Known Member
WOW! That looks fabulous and perfect, even nicer than ILM's actual model. I dream of getting that result for both my Reliant and Enterprise. I'm very interested in your process. If I can bombard you with some questions:

-what iridescent paint did you use?
-more details on your clear coating/sealing process - it looks like the iridescence still reads well after decals. Are you saying the Marabu product is on top of the decals as a final coat?

Just stunning, absolutely stunning!

Hi Keiko.

I used the "Polytranspar" paint in blue, red, green and gold. Here in Europe the importation of certain paintings with lacquer base is not allowed, so the ones I used are water based. I think the lacquer base gives better results. You also have the option to buy only the pigments and use the base you prefer.


Yes, the two layers of Marabú varnish in spray are the final layers. Sanding between both layers must be very light to avoid damaging the decals. After sanding, it’s necessary to thoroughly clean the entire model with a clean damp cloth and wait until it’s completely dry before applying the final coat.
The varnish layers must to be well applied. The result is not good if the layer is too light. And it is not good to apply it in excess.


One thing I forgot to mention is the base color that I used. It's a mixture of Tamiya acrylic colors XF-2 matt white, XF-19 sky grey and X-11 silver. I calculate that the proportion can be 80% white, 10% grey and 10% silver. If you have doubts, better reduce the proportions of gray and silver.
After painting the base color, I advise you to apply a layer of varnish because the pigment of the color silver leaves marks and scratches by any small accidental rubbing.

I hope I've helped. Good luck with your project.


Rafa
 
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TazMan2000

Master Member
Excellent work would be an understatement. Love the aztec paintjob. It actually looks better than the studio scale model.

TazMan2000
 

Keiko

Sr Member
Hi Keiko.

I used the "Polytranspar" paint in blue, red, green and gold. Here in Europe the importation of certain paintings with lacquer base is not allowed, so the ones I used are water based. I think the lacquer base gives better results. You also have the option to buy only the pigments and use the base you prefer.


Yes, the two layers of Marabú varnish in spray are the final layers. Sanding between both layers must be very light to avoid damaging the decals. After sanding, it’s necessary to thoroughly clean the entire model with a clean damp cloth and wait until it’s completely dry before applying the final coat.
The varnish layers must to be well applied. The result is not good if the layer is too light. And it is not good to apply it in excess.


One thing I forgot to mention is the base color that I used. It's a mixture of Tamiya acrylic colors XF-2 matt white, XF-19 sky grey and X-11 silver. I calculate that the proportion can be 80% white, 10% grey and 10% silver. If you have doubts, better reduce the proportions of gray and silver.
After painting the base color, I advise you to apply a layer of varnish because the pigment of the color silver leaves marks and scratches by any small accidental rubbing.

I hope I've helped. Good luck with your project.


Rafa

Thanks for the detailed response. I'll be book marking this thread for future reference.
 

Buliwif

Active Member
Holy cow, that's gorgeous. Every inch of that ship is a masterpiece, Aztecing alone is a pain and a half and you just took it to a whole new level. I don't think AMT even expected that someone could do this with one of their kits. Reliant's always been a beautiful ship, but this.... Ok, ok, I'm done sucking up. Excellent work. Just excellent.
 

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Galactican

Sr Member
The beauty pics seem to show the real studio model and that's quite an achievement! Thank you very much for the info on the paints. It's much appreciated. :)
 

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