Venator-class star destroyer - Revell 1/2256 w heavy mods - build log. (pic heavy)

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Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
EDIT: my progress and pictures are all in spoiler tags except for the most recent one. Easier to load & Read.

Hi Everyone,

After my Bismarck and sci-fi kitbash of a volvo FH4 I descided to switch gears to Star Wars models. I was scared at first to tackle a SW model with all these talented people on this forum, let alone post a build log about it.

But there is much to learn by posting a log! Despite having grown up with the original trilogy I am a big fan of the republic era ships. Especially the Venator class so I got myself the Revell 1/2256 as a base. (the box says 1/2700 but is proven to be wrong). The republic era ships also give an advantage of never having a real life studio model, giving me a bit more space and interpretation of my own.

Two big inspirations for me on this build are:
yasuhiro Takeshita (I hope that is his name), with his amazing venator displayed just after the clone wars above the death star.

and

The madhatter, a modeler from Australia, with his rendition of a modded venator.

Having to wait a few weeks for this due to some problems with the order it finally arrived. All my other supplies had arrived days earlier. These include pre-wired leds (9-12v, with resistor) 400 meters of 0.5 fiber, 12 V - 230v power supply, styrene in all kinds of profiles and thicknesses and primer (no paint yet).

YvRedkh.jpg


click on the spoiler tag to see the pictures and progress
2S8WMj0.jpg


The model will be 52cm long when finished, and I'm a bit stunned by how small this will actually be. In the spirit of old school model threads a few pics of the spruces:
3RmvNYh.jpg

f1Uh6Hq.jpg

vBiudGW.jpg


So lets get this show on the road, and get ready it is going to be a long one !!

Part I: overal view and drilling and drilling and drilling and.....


I started by giving all the parts a good wash and cutting them all out. I did not worry about the numbering, this is a really easy model to put together, followed by dry fitting some parts to get a sense of scale.

The bridges (one for star ships, troops and backup and one for the actual cruiser itself)

NsPU8lB.jpg


The tower for the bridges:

mBPCaVN.jpg


The hanger:

sVbuBPu.jpg


The detail is nice, but it was apparent quickly that it can improve allot. Many area's are dull and empty.
I was a bit shaken by the amount of ways to start this project, and finally settled on starting to drill some fiber holes in the port-side trench. The trenches have allot of detail but it isn't that sharp, also really repetitive. I will try to rectify this with styrene parts and drilling holes at more random positions.

At first it tried the drill press setup I have for my rotary tool, but even the lower speed melted the plastic now and then, filling up the just made holes. this proving to be a hassle I switched to hand drilling and putting up some SW series / movies in the background.

I'm using 0.5 drill bits, the fiber fits perfectly.

FdLvdIu.jpg


My plan was to drill out all the windows made by the model itself and then add allot on other locations to break the repetition. Here is a good example. The first picture is a part of the trench with just the windows drilled that the model 'provides'. The second picture shows how I added more windows at random locations to break the symmetry. I intend to make even more difference with styrene later on.

20RklQu.jpg


yS2sUoQ.jpg


I wanted to add a few more features to this model, deciding not to open up the big hanger on the top but wanted some interior I cut out the port side hanger bay door.
Here it is next to the original part:

vaDTecZ.jpg


The starboard side will stay shut, or lend itself to the mount for displaying the cruiser.

One more detail view of the many holes I drilled in the trench parts. Probably going to do even more.

Jw23l9S.jpg


So this is where I'm at!!!! I'm really motivated for this model and many updates can be expected!

I hope you (will) enjoy this build with me together.

-Hopli

(my apologies for spelling mistakes)
 
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computergeek

Active Member
Looks fantastic so far, it's a great kit! Out of curiosity what are you using to drill holes? Mine always end up not lining up because the bit tends to drift. I use the blue Tamiya drill
 

Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
Looks fantastic so far, it's a great kit! Out of curiosity what are you using to drill holes? Mine always end up not lining up because the bit tends to drift. I use the blue Tamiya drill
Thanks!

I use a simple exacto style hand-drill, but to make sure it doesn't drift I first press 'pilot holes' with a exacto-pin. That way I can just simply seat the drill in the dip just pressed and it won't drift at all. So basically every hole I drilled (and holes to come) have been pressed in beforehand with a pin. I'll try and take a picture when I work on the next parts.

VC56PSY.jpg


-hopli
 

Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
Hey,

Got some more work done, slow and steady!

Part II: hack and slash.

So to make room for the fibers to travel into the hull I have to take out the wall that lines the trenches. This wall sits behind the trenches and provides a gluing surface and structural support for both hull pieces.

I tried to keep key points and a bottom and top edge so I can still get a strong bond when eventually bonding the whole thing together.

This is what tonight looked like in pictures:

The evil wall that has to be torn down:

click on the spoiler tag to see the pictures and progress
gUcDrzE.jpg


Torn down and showing the fitting of the trench piece.

uWegjoM.jpg


Another area cleared:

dp4hlTm.jpg


Port side done:

UqMxhme.jpg


Starboard yet to be cut open:

KmordRQ.jpg
Cya later!


-Hopli
 
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Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
Good day everyone,

I guess it is time for something else than mangled plastic, I guess nobody is really interested in seeing me chop up a perfectly fine kit.
Today I decided to do something else and alter the lower hanger to a more detailed version.

Sadly enough this also starts with a bit of mangling... lets get to it!

Part III: Hanger 2.0.

click on the spoiler tag to see the pictures and progress

So this is the original piece, which slots into an opening on the bottom hull:

Gm6hbGi.jpg

d7jYXdu.jpg



Not enough surface detail, a bit to low, no crane and side hangers. I am a fan of allot of pictures so I'll reduce the size a bit and keep the higher resolution for the 'finished shots'

here are my steps of today:

Cut out the hole where the hanger piece sits and sand flush:
rXCdaID.jpg


Add floors and side pieces to fill the triangular hole. Note you can also see my 'floor' plan for the side hanger on this picture:
kj7uVRL.jpg

MI1qaPv.jpg


Adding walls upper struts with spacing (for light to shine trough)
zWw1SeY.jpg

xuLECRm.jpg

UE0Gax2.jpg


Its starting to look like a hanger!!!!!!! At this point I am very pleased, being my first time doing something like this.
TnXTlhd.jpg


At this point the big structures where finished and I started adding greeblies from my bin. (rests of stuff I used on my FH truck)

Guns:
0HF6g4x.jpg


Rails for the crane/docking clamp.
9MulEqD.jpg


and the clamp itself and in its position:
IRz5ouB.jpg

2DcLPe4.jpg


I cut the sides of the old hanger piece and plan on using it as a lid for the new 'hole'
4SkODoX.jpg

0olcpcm.jpg

vOuH3lk.jpg


Sorry for a lower quality than before, normally I use my wife's S10. sadly today I have to make due with my J3.

Time to clean up a bit and get to work! Tomorrow more progress!
wdneu09.jpg


[\SPOILER]

Cya!

-Hopli
 
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gedmac66

Sr Member
Terrific start to your custom build. I’ve got this (& quite a few others - waiting !), and would certainly appreciate your experience with it’s construction. It’s certainly your call - but the more pics, the better imho.
Oh, and the photos look fine too !
Thanks for sharing, & Subbed. ;)

Ged
 

Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
Terrific start to your custom build. I’ve got this (& quite a few others - waiting !), and would certainly appreciate your experience with it’s construction. It’s certainly your call - but the more pics, the better imho.
Oh, and the photos look fine too !
Thanks for sharing, & Subbed. ;)

Ged
Thank you for the kind words! I don't know if my experience will be of any help, its still pretty new all of this.

So I got a little bit of work done today.

Part IV: Lights 'n boxes.

First thing I did this evening was finish of the detail on the hanger roof. It is my first time with tweezers and really tiny styrene parts. Since this is a place that won't be that visible its the best place to practice. Need to find a way to have less glue, won't be visible after primer tho, but still would want to work 'cleaner'.

click on the spoiler tag to see the pictures and progress
4IiqerB.jpg

oDvjCNB.jpg


I also added some fiber on the roof, I secured the fiber with woodglue, will have to dry a whole night there is probably a better way.
IN2TFhN.jpg

nb7VKla.jpg


After that It was time to light the hanger itself, I had the idea to let light escape at the top, bit of indirect lighting. I closed up the sides with pieces of styrene leaving a 1.5mm gap at the top, and covered them in alu tape.

After that I created two 'light boxes' and glued them next to the hanger, they will receive a lid with an LED inside. The boxes are also coverd in alu tape. I also secured the LED's in the lid with woodglue, so i'll have to wait until tomorrow to test if the structure works.

Small thing about the LED's, they are pre-wired LED's with resistors that take 9-12V. I plan on using 12V power supply. The pre-wired thing makes it really easy, no thinking, not to much soldering (I love to solder though). Just install and connect.

Fzo9l0w.jpg

e6fH93H.jpg

gMYZP9y.jpg

EpD6ZXw.jpg

BKI1085.jpg


Tomorrow we find out if these hold and work:

7fr0MsE.jpg

[\SPOILER]

Cya later!

-Hopli
 
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gedmac66

Sr Member
G’day Hopli, your scratched ventral hanger is looking sweet, and that tip about pre-pinning (?) prior to drilling is one I’ll remember.
Regarding glue - for really small styrene to styrene I find Tamiya extra thin works well - larger pieces Testors liquid cement, and CA for quick/immediate ‘holds’ with either (mentioned) liquid glue dabbed/brushed/applied later for extra strength.
For securing fibre optics - Elmer’s glue works a treat (cures faster than PVA), and if light blocking is also required around the same area then Tulip’s ‘Slick’ fabric paint is useful too. Neither will damage the optic strands.

Ged
 

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Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
G’day Hopli, your scratched ventral hanger is looking sweet, and that tip about pre-pinning (?) prior to drilling is one I’ll remember.
Regarding glue - for really small styrene to styrene I find Tamiya extra thin works well - larger pieces Testors liquid cement, and CA for quick/immediate ‘holds’ with either (mentioned) liquid glue dabbed/brushed/applied later for extra strength.
For securing fibre optics - Elmer’s glue works a treat (cures faster than PVA), and if light blocking is also required around the same area then Tulip’s ‘Slick’ fabric paint is useful too. Neither will damage the optic strands.

Ged
Thanks, I have a bottle of Tamiya extra thin which I will use now. I also noticed my white glue is 'express' and didn't take that long to cure.

That is some amazing work. It will be hard to believe that is the Revell kit when you are done
Thanks! lets hope so!

Another kindred spirit!
This forum and people bring out the best in us!

Helloooooow!

So I Finished the lighting for the bottom hanger today!

Part V: Coooool ... lights....

click on the spoiler tag to see the pictures and progress

So starting today I gave the hanger and little side hangers a coat of black primer.
4IZZzmb.jpg

iIBjTxJ.jpg


After that I painted the little hangers in a light gray, they will barely be visible, followed by trying to find out where I would place the LED. Wanting light to shine out of the hangers into space I placed them at the bottom in the back wall, which is also the place less visible when peering inside.

The Fore one was easy, the aft one needed to come in from outside of the hull. When placing the bottom plate I'll have to improvise a cover for the LED.
2mvJwPt.jpg

FF6UYnn.jpg

wzFGp6J.jpg


Also needed was more alu tape to keep the light bleed to a minimum.

This is how the whole 'module' looks when closed up:
DKMNLw4.jpg


I must say I'm not good with photography yet so these picture's don't really represent how it looks IRL, but they do come close. you can see the main hanger gets indirect light from the top, while the side hangers beam outside from the back.

loyKSxl.jpg

9xIAVli.jpg

Dp3OgqP.jpg

iCsvrED.jpg

[\SPOILER]

Took me a while to get here, next up the opened side hanger which will conclude the big scratch build parts, after that its improving on the original and placing more fiber in trenches :).

Cya later!

-Hopli
 
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gedmac66

Sr Member
That space you’ve intentionally created - to allow indirect light into this hanger also gives the illusion that it could possibly be an observation level/deck - too cool !
 

Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
That space you’ve intentionally created - to allow indirect light into this hanger also gives the illusion that it could possibly be an observation level/deck - too cool !

Didn't think of it that way, but yes it does!

Sry for a bit of a wait for this next part, I was on holiday, but as soon as I got back work continued.

Part VI: Side-Hangar + lights.

click on the spoiler tag to see the pictures and progress

I started by adding the fiber strands to the hangar piece that was cut open.
EYmI6f5.jpg


This kinda revealed a problem. With all the fiber it was kinda hard knowing how to do the inside of the hangar. After working the problem for a while i came up with a box that fit just inside the fiber strands.
ixMOcPI.jpg

rqfgtCb.jpg


It was impossible to make the sides follow the front so I covered that up by adding the two blast shield doors to the sides.
3zQPriw.jpg


After that it was time for lights. A blue hue is what I'm going for. The thing is, in the bottom hangars you can see the LED, which isn't much of an issue since you'll never look at the ship at an angle revealing the LED. But this hangar is in the middle of the port-side trench, completely in view.

My solution to this was to mimic the typical pit we all know from the imperial ships and death star hangars.

QFhVX.jpg


my 'simple' rendition, also a few greeblies to break the flat surfaces and add a kind of observatory.
8xjZ5FW.jpg


From within this pit I attached a blue LED using some spare tank wheels I cut up. Adding the LED in the bottom made sure whatever angle you look at the ship, it will never reveal the LED or shine back into your eyes.
zc7TgX8.jpg

zj7Aldb.jpg


This is the result (I really need to look into taking pictures from lit up stuff).
HEWR7DC.jpg

UrzM1XI.jpg


This is it for now, More progress to follow in the next weeks. Next up either the engines or the bridges get a huge facelift.
[\SPOILER]

Cya later!

-Hopli
 
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Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
Hey, small update of the work I got done on this busy Sunday.

Part VI-2: Side-Hangar + lights and a preview on engines

click on the spoiler tag to see the pictures and progress

I started by finishing up the detail inside the port-side hangar.
HOga1IW.jpg

1u7Uiho.jpg


After that I decided to tackle the engines. Before adding lots of styrene parts and greeblies first I had to know how to route the lights.
The plan is 1 5mm in the center, 6 3mm in a circle around the center.

Drilling out the nozzle's was step 1.
wXOvn3L.jpg

zkoRkUl.jpg


Step 2 involved making a styrene template to hold the LEDs in a nice array. and later hold some greeblies to 'hide' the lights when looking into the nozzle when the lights aren't on.

this is my first 'failed' attempt, some of the holes where to wide and didn't fit the nozzle anymore.
HzzKvGJ.jpg

rVNuPpM.jpg


attempt two was much better, googling how to divide a circle in 6 helped...
DOKG8dW.jpg

tNCUnKi.jpg

edSnW9q.jpg

RCLDgTE.jpg


had to awkwardly hold all the wires against a 9V battery...
8dztpWZ.jpg

[\SPOILER]

That is it. Not that much progress, but progress nevertheless!

cya later!

-Hopli
 
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Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
EDIT: I'll put every previous post in a spoiler tag when I post an update. That way the page will loader quicker. I kinda have a bad habit of posting allot of pictures.

Good evening everyone,

I got more work done on the engines. This will probably show the direction I'm going in. I'll just let the pictures talk. Still much more to add but getting there.

Sadly enough, more mangling of plastic first. Don't worry its not that much.
There are pipes on the side of the engines, in the opening scene of EP III you can clearly see the area beneath the pipes is open. Although I'm not going for movie accuracy, I did not like the plastic being molded shut.

click on the spoiler tag to see the pictures and progress
Part VII: Building up the engines!

Original engines:
y62jUPO.jpg


and the small ones:
80jjyP4.jpg


Same four engines with the area removed:
krBRqEQ.jpg


After this minor surgery, it was time to stick strategically placed random stuff on.....

this is what I have so far:
kapvvRE.jpg

fygBB8L.jpg

That is it for now!

Cya later!

-Hopli

EDIT: bonus got them on the model and see how they look:
m8L0S6s.jpg

3jtJclp.jpg


also going to try to put some previous pictures in spoiler tags.
 
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Hoplitespear

Well-Known Member
Those engines look great! I love all the added details
Thank you, I'm still new to this, but I like the effect. Especially the T-track on the nozzle's.
Thx!!

Hey guys! It has been a while but allot of stuff got done on the engines. So lets hop right into it!

Part VIII: T-track and LED wires for miles!

Continuing on part VI-2 and VII... I started by detailing the shorter set of big engines the same way as the long set. The amount of T-track to be cut was enough to feel my t-track cutting needs for ages....
I crafted a inset in the barrel using spouts for caulking tubes. (hard to explain in English but basically this)

sJp9PP4.jpg

ZpgzZN2.jpg


Here are the 4 big nozzle's finished with a quick black primer coating on the inside.

gmbVO5C.jpg


In part VI-2 I made the spacers for the 7 LED's each of these big engines is going to receive. I soldered them together giving each set only two cables instead of 14.

9lyQpeX.jpg


and off course could not resist a quick test:
VgFdgwS.jpg


After all that, detailing continued on the shorter engines and the 4 smaller engines hanging on the structure in the middle.
Holes were drilled in the back plate in the correct positions to receive wires for each set of LED's. The inside of the smaller engines had to be cut out and the border thinned. I glued a tank wheel inside with a 5mm hole to receive a single 5mm LED.

The tiny set of engines will receive a 3MM led poking trough the back plate. they also received some detail.

dPOsIl8.jpg

6TeqmvW.jpg

M3TZtqd.jpg

aeXOpkE.jpg


I got around 30 pictures of the engines in different states of detail but lets jump straight to the end result, or atleast the 95% mark. I really like this picture so a bit of a higer resolution here:

50e18xc.jpg


And lets finish of strong with pictures showing a final light test before placing the engines aside and starting a new part of the ship.
A total of 34 LED's for the whole engine assembly.
note: stuff not being glued yet gives light bleed, I am aware of this!

QayzKZP.jpg

5m2Rw72.jpg

mUkEPFm.jpg

idyfAAc.jpg


Thanks for watching !!!

Cya later!

-Hopli
 

gedmac66

Sr Member
Your engines are incredible !
It’s a pity ( in many ways - as with most intricately detailed mods ) that once painted those obvious additions will be somewhat lost - though certainly not forgotten !
Fantastic.:p
 

Madhatter

Jr Member
Hello Hopli
Mate - fantastic build!!! Love it
It's been a very long time since I was last on this site and yet the quality of builds hasn't changed. Your build is bringing back some memories for sure!
Oddly enough, I started another one of these a couple of years ago and got as far as adding some details to the main engines but ran out of mojo. Maybe one day I will pick it up again but in the mean time, I shall enjoy watching you create an awesome Venator
Cheers
MH
 

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