AMT’s Star Trek “USS Enterprise” Model Kit

AMT's 'U.S.S. Enterprise' model kit collector's tin.

AMT’s ‘U.S.S. Enterprise’ model kit collector’s tin.

I always enjoyed to make models when I was a boy. The exactness, the attention to every conceivable detail!”  –Hans Gruber, “Die Hard”

Hans!  Booby!  I’m your White-Knight, I loved building models too!  So, when I was talking with a friend recently about the things we used to do when we were kids, I mentioned making models, and my friend asked, “When was the last time you made one?”.  “About 30 years ago.”, I told her.  “Then,” she said, “maybe it’s time to make a new one.”  See, this is what friends are for!

Update – I’ve built a second version of the Enterprise kit, aiming for much greater realism, and am extremely pleased with the results.

In my youth, I had two distinct modeling phases – the early years of cars and spaceships, and the early teen years of World War II airplanes.  For this project, I was determined to dig down deep, and, as I scanned the models available on Amazon, my mind settled on one – the Enterprise.  AMT’s USS Enterprise model1 is one I’ve probably built 5-6 times, always needing a new one after the most recent had been damaged or destroyed in spirited play.

"every conceivable detail..."

“every conceivable detail…”

A great thing about the AMT kit is it comes with enough decals to make any of the original ‘5-Year Mission’ ships, not just the Enterprise.  But it also allows for Enterprise variants from the Pilot Episode through Season 3, including the “Mirror, MirrorISS Enterprise.  “Your Agonizer, please”.

Blue!? You molded it in blue!?!

Blue!? You molded it in blue!?!

As you can see, there are not a lot of parts, but the kit is pretty challenging. The secondary hull is made up of five pieces that don’t always play-nice together. There are also a number of long seams that can be tough to close off. The tin arrived in good order, but, blue!  I was incensed that it was molded in blue.  “Smh, how about – ya know – white!?”.  I should have known better…

Blue molding + flat white paint = very light navy grey color

Blue molding + flat white paint = very, very light navy grey color

Okay, so the blue molding works very well under flat white… I guess these model companies know what they are doing.  Paint the details and some touch-ups, then add the decals, and, hey, this is starting to look like the Enterprise!

Front-top angle from the finished kit.

Front-top angle from the finished model.

Starboard side of the finished model.

Starboard side of the finished model.

Lower-front of the finished model.

Lower-front of the finished model.

After drying, a coat of Decal Bonder and a couple coats of flat lacquer, she’s ready for launch. Working on this model kit was a true blast, just like when I was a kid. If you are looking for a simple and fun hobby, which can be as deep and challenging as you care to take it, looking into modeling. Especially if you enjoyed it growing up. In fact, working on the Enterprise inspired me to tackle some other favorite vehicles from Sci-Fi.

References   [ + ]

1. Amazon Referral Link

Mike Knotts

Mike Knotts was born in 1968 in a small town in southern Indiana. Even when very young, Mike showed a love for all-things technical and sci-fi. Moving with his family to California in the early 80's, he eventually graduated from UC Santa Barbara with a degree in History. Rather than put that to good use, Mike continued to pursue his passion for technology by working for early, regional ISP's in the mid 1990's. He currently resides in the Pacific Northwest, where he works as a project manager for an Internet startup. Mike is a co-founder of Geekometry.

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