Battlestar Galactica Colonial One by Moebius

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Continuing my Galactica roll after the Viper Mk VII build, up next is Colonial One. As with the Viper, I'm building a lit custom base for added effect.

I've heard the decals are rather difficult to fit, and I'm unclear why the blue sections are two different shades of blue. I may skip the decals for the blue parts and try to mask and paint, but that is to be determined.

Dry fit after a coat of black primer inside and out.

Main engines cut out for lighting. I'm planning to light the main engines and three outboard engines, as well as all of the windows and a downward-facing spotlight on the front left side of the ship.

Main engines with photo etch inserts added.

Drilling out the main fuselage holes. They are supposed to be square but I didn't have any real way (or patience) to make them square. No files I have are small enough. I may opt to use the photo etch as "armor" (really more like cladding) to square them off, but the PEs lack some detail so I may either add to them or cut them down. Another "up in the air" at this point.

Main engine lighting test.

Base before final-ish weathering. Again, this is a picture frame with foam core for support and a piece of a FOR SALE sign as the actual deck. The white and yellow lines are paint. The rest are after-market decals I picked up and added. There is also fiber optic lighting.

Pulling the fiber optics through.

Underside of the base. One 3mm white LED is for all of the white lights, which are one steady. The reds are separate and flash in sync.

I've added more blast marks on the pad with oil paints.

That's it for now!

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Not a whole lot to update. I've been working on the outboard engines and the landing gear. Here is a quick light test I did with one of the engines. I wanted to see if the LED would be bright enough for what I wanted (it's really small). It should be fine. I will have to filter it a bit so it's not such a point-source but that won't be a problem.


I added bits of wire as antennas to make the model a little more accurate, since the kit doesn't have them. Will be painting this and the engine blast shields this week.



Quick update. Got the engine shields, rear arch, and the rear landing gear painted (mostly). I need to do some touch up and then they'll be weathered later but these are mostly done.

Outside of the shields.

And the inside:
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So I've been working on the engines to try and get the wiring and lighting all figured out. The main engines (big blue ones shown earlier) were a piece of cake and are done.

The upper and lower secondary engines, which are the small round ones here, are also pretty easy because the housings connect directly to the main hull.


But the three outboard engines (two to the side and one below), are a huge pain! Well, scratch that. The lower engine will be fine, but the port and starboard engines have this little tiny connecting arm I need to run wire through to get the lights to work. I've got it working, but it's been problematic. I need to build a straight out-of-box kit with no lighting sometime!

I have to get the light wiring through these. I've filed a small channel through them that seems to be working so far. Fingers crossed!

As for the hotspot on the wide engine, there will be a photo etch grill in front of it. I've also added a small piece of wax paper painted with transparent orange between the grill and the light to soften it a little. It will still be hot in the center but a little more diffuse. Since the ship will be parked on a landing pad I'm just going to say that's what they look like when idling or powering up or down!


The diffusion is better now. I glued a piece of translucent plastic tinted orange to the back of the photo etch grill. The photo etch sucks, to be honest. I'm really tired of photo etch not fitting right. The space they are to fit into is slightly oval, while the PE is completed straight across the top, so there's a little gap. Which, okay, is no big deal. Easy enough to fill with a little bit of tulip for light blocking. But the rounded ends are also too big by just a little bit, so you can't close the two engine halves without crushing and bending the PE. And trying to file down the curved parts of a tiny grill is pretty hard to do without bending them all to hell. These really should have been made better.



Quick update:

All of the engines are working and have been sealed. They still need another pass with putty on the seams, then I'll repaint and consider them complete until weathering, which I won't do until after they are attached to the model. The holes for wiring have all been drilled into the fuselage as well.

Test of the upper and main engines. Just a dry fit. There's a big seam inside the upper engine I need to fix.

I decided to add a small floodlight to the lower front fuselage. This is just dry fit and still needs to be light blocked, but I got the effect I wanted. The white paint is just rattle-can primer that hasn't been sanded yet. I'm also going to try to make my own very subtle aztec paint scheme on the upper hull.

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Minor update...

I painted some panels to add some variation and added a smoked, burnt end to the engine exhaust. I did this for all of the engines.

Photo etch for the cockpit and lounge windows. The clear parts in the kit completely suck and I won't be using them. They are way too thick and don't fit the fuselage openings correctly. I will need to add some sort of window film to these. Still mulling options. Any suggestions are welcome!

Strip LEDs glued to the lower fuselage.

Hard to see but I painted some metallic blueish tint on the ends of the bells to add some extra color variation and a burnt metal look,


I like the heat effects on the engines

For the window film you could try Micro Kristal Klear
Thank you! I'm going to use Krystal Klear for the smaller porthole windows. The openings on the photo etch are pretty big. I guess I could try putting tape along the outside and see if I can fill them that way. Thanks for the suggestion!


12/1 update.

Another engine lighting test. Nothing is glued yet, just checking to make sure I didn't short anything as I move along.

Photo etch windows filled with Mico Krystal Klear. I did a test first to see if it would cover openings this large, and I was surprised there was enough surface tension in the glue. They are still not quite dry but should look good once installed. Now getting them to fit is another story.

First coat of white on the conning tower, though as I was painting I remembered that I never rescribed some panel lines across the top where the putty and sanding filled them in. Oops! More work for tomorrow.

Another quick lighting test of four of the seven engine lights. These four are all now glued into place.

I did some soldering in the lower fuselage today for the lights and wanted to do a quick check. So far so good!

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Sr Member
Coming along nicely!

For the cockpit details, you could possibly add a backlit photo printed on transparent film. I have seen that technique used to great effects on small interiors for 1/350 and 1/500 scale stuff


Regarding the cockpit and lounge windows, there is very little space behind them the way the kit is molded. There is sort of an interior shelf behind each, and they are small to begin with. There's no room to build anything out. A backlit film is possible, though. I haven't messed with them since I pit in the MKK for the windows. I may give that a shot.

Right now I am very painstakingly masking off the upper hull for aztecing.

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