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Federation Excelsior Class

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Category: Star Trek
Subcategory: 1/2500

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Medium: Resin
Parts: 12
Status: Available
Release Date: 2005
Skill Level: Intermediate
Let me start by saying that is one of the most challenging 1:2500 scale kits that Iíve built. The detail is stunning, and Gizmotron has done a wonderful job of designing this kit with the modeler in mind.

The kit has a total of 12 parts, all molded in light gray resin. Hereís the interesting thing about this kit Ė you will only use nine parts in the construction of the kit. The other three parts are optional. The kit is designed so that you have a choice of two bridge modules, two impulse deflection crystals, and two shuttle bay sections (the part thatís on top of the secondary hull, aft of the nacelle pylon mount, forward of the arced shuttle bay on the stern). These optional parts give you the choice of building the ship as the experimental NX-2000 version from Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, or the standard Starfleet NCC version seen in later movies and on The Next Generation.

The decal sheet that comes with this kit is simply amazing. You get three or four name choices, including the NX and NCC versions of the Excelsior herself. I honestly canít remember how many decals in total I applied to this kit, but this will give you some idea of the complexity of the two decal sheets that were included.

Upper Primary Hull Ė 9 decals
Lower Primary Hull Ė 5 decals
Saucer Edge Ė 13 decals

Thatís not including any of the layered decals on the secondary hull. Each warp nacelle has 12 decals, including the Aztec patterning, the midpoint grilles, the blue section on top, and others.

The only problem with the size of the decals is that the dark bands that wrap around the center portion of each nacelle arenít long enough. I placed the ends together on the outboard sections, and was pleased to discover that Tamiya German Gray is almost a perfect color match, so I used that to fill in the missing parts on the inboard sides.

The other issue with the decals wasnít with their size or printing, but with the application. They didnít like MicroSol one bit, and as soon as I applied it and put the decal down, the decal would start to curl back on itself. I ended up using a micro-brush dipped in water to get the decals snugged down in place around the curved surfaces.

I chose to build my ship as the USS Melbourne, NCC-62043, which was destroyed at the Battle of Wolf 359. I airbrushed my standard TMP-era mixture of Tamiya White/Sky Grey, and detailed with Tamiya German Grey. I brush-applied Future, waited for it to cure, then spent about a week putting the decals on, waiting until the next day to touch a section because the decals moved at the slightest touch. Once the decals were set, I airbrushed two separate coats of Future to seal them, then applied a final top coat in the form of Testorís DullCote.

My patience in applying all those decals paid off in 2008 when I entered this model in the contest at the 19th annual WonderFest in Louisville, KY. I was absolutely stunned when I was awarded a Bronze for my build-up, and I display the medal alongside the completed model in my hobby room.

This is a fantastic kit, and Iím seriously thinking of getting another one so I can build the NX version of the Excelsior. Federation Models also carries clear-cast resin warp nacelles for this kit, which would make the completed kit look even better. If you like 1:2500 scale kits, buy one of these!

Starboard Bow - high
Port Stern
Bottom View
Closer view of underside
Starboard Stern - lower view toward impulse deck

The completed kit measures almost 7 inches long, 2.75 inches wide, and 1.25 inches high.

Review by: Rich "Lonewolf" Dula

Entry created: 05/31/09
Comments: 1 | Rating (1-5): | MSRP: $35.00

Product Comments
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Jim Martin - 08:20 07/06/2009
With out a doubt one of the top three resin kits I've seen. Casting is clean and as stated, decals are amazing. If you don't have it, get it.


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