Self-contained Nacelle Lighting (Spinning) PL Enterprise

Discussion in 'General Modeling' started by snook, Aug 2, 2003.

  1. snook

    snook New Member

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    I picked up a Polar Lights TOS Enterprise kit the other day, and I love it! I like the small size, but it makes lighting the kit difficult. My favorite version is the production version, with the spinning lights in the Bussard Collectors, and I really want to replicate that.

    My first thought was to have them pulsate with a mix of flashing and steady LEDs, mostly red with some tiny yellows thrown in. But I really wanted the LEDs to spin. So I grabbed a trinket that I picked up in Chinatown here in NYC that has spinning lights in red and green, and popped it onto the front of a nacelle. To my surprise, it turned out to be just about the exact diameter of the nacelle![​IMG]

    The beautiful part is that the flasher gadget has a self-contained power source, with two button batteries (AG3 size). The other great thing is that these are CHEAP! Like 3 to 5 bucks!

    Spinning things are difficult to photograph (due to frame rates and all that), but I shot some movies with my Sony Clié of the effect:

    First you can see the model with one nacelle lit (look ma, no external wiring!), then you can see the nacelle with the dome off, and finally you can see the spinner-light in the palm of my hand to show its overall size.

    I put some tape over the clear dome to diffuse the lights a bit, and I'll frost them when the time comes. I might also add a small lucite "crystal" to defract the light a little more.

    The LEDs in the spinner are red/green, but the reds are much brighter and they dominate the overall color. The other nice thing is that the green actually looks yellowish, and the red looks fairly orange (red+green=yellow in lighting), so the look is pretty cool IMHO.

    The final thing I have to do is see if I can file this down so that it fits a little better inside the tube. If not, I might cheat and make the nacelle 1/16th" longer than it's supposed to be. The only real drawback to using this method is that domes will both spin in the same direction, but the effect looks so good to the naked eye that this can be overlooked.[​IMG]

    It's 5 AM so I hope that this post is coherent. I'll add some stills to this in case the .MOV doesn't work for everyone.

    EDIT: (stills)




  2. phase pistol

    phase pistol Master Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    That's amazing snook! [​IMG]

    How much are you selling these kits for? [​IMG]

    - K
  3. rhboyd

    rhboyd Well-Known Member

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    Killdozer wrote:
    <HR></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS=$row_color>
    OMG! I bought ... fashion jewellery for 13 year old girls...
    </TD></TR><TR><TD><HR></TD></TR></TABLE><SPAN CLASS=$row_color>

    OK KD.... anything ELSE you'd like to share?!

  4. rad1701

    rad1701 Sr Member

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    Awesome look. I like the multicolors. Really looks like the model is doing something cool. Great piece!
  5. E Williams

    E Williams Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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    Wow, that's a great idea! Are you going to wire a switch in there, or just attach the nacelle dome onto the top of the light so you can turn it on by twisting it?

    I've seen some regular red/green strobe-like lights with that case, but not one that spins like that... I can think of a few other prop applications as well! Is there an online source for these? A search on google gave me some "rave light" results, but they didn't have any of the spinning kind- just the regular strobe ones...

  6. DrMcoy

    DrMcoy Sr Member

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    Very cool. My biggest question is how to wire them up so you can turn them on and off easily -- and without having a masters degree in electronics.

    If you plan to pick some more up, please count me in for a couple sets.

    I wonder how long before someone actually makes a complete lighting kit that is easy to install. Hyperdyne, are you listening?
  7. E Williams

    E Williams Sr Member RPF PREMIUM MEMBER

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  8. Darth Furtive

    Darth Furtive New Member

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    I also have e-mailed them, and have recieved no reply.
  9. Mike Emery

    Mike Emery New Member

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    You may enjoy this:

    Animated Polar Lights TOS E engine nacelle effect

    I spent a good month developing this proof-of-concept; while I'd really like to get this to market I have doubts that it can be made "affordable" enough for the masses.

    If nothing else it shows that a complex effect can be achieved if you work at it enough.
  10. neoprime

    neoprime Well-Known Member

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    Wow..thats cool. How much is a set of those?
  11. Sidewinder

    Sidewinder Sr Member

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    Go to:
    click products and then select Sparkchaser, they have flashy light effects for just about everything including the nacelles


  12. Mike Emery

    Mike Emery New Member

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    I don't believe they have anything for the 1/1000 PL TOS 'Prise.
  13. 11B30B4

    11B30B4 Well-Known Member

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    Every fraking link in this post is broke except the federationmodels :(
  14. Walter

    Walter Sr Member

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    Dude, it is from 2003... what do you expect?

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