All I've done since the last post has been to take care of a few blue light leaks along the hindquarters of the kit, and I also placed a tiny thin piece of plastic atop the "pimp cadillac rim" in the center tail section, to conceal the horrible fit issue. With that, the kit was finally, truly done.
What did I learn?
The main thing that I picked up from this build regarded LEDs. Basically, if you're going to string LEDs in parallel, DO NOT mix sizes and colors. The best thing to do is to create a separate circuit for the different lights, and then have them all meet at the power source. Current takes the path of least resistance, and when you mix up different sized LEDs, you can rob the bigger ones of their light because of the smaller ones.
I also learned to be VERY careful when working with 9v batteries. When I wasn't paying attention, a 9v made contact with a pair of metal scissors on the table, right under my head. I actually felt the heat... that battery could've blown up and really hurt me. Just keep the batteries away from your work area until you're ready to attach them!
Not all soldering irons are equal. I bought a crappy cheap one at Radio Shack, and it lasted for two models. I bought a Weller, and I couldn't believe how quickly it melted the solder. I felt like an idiot for having struggled on those kits with that cheapie iron.
But most of all, I learned that sometimes the best thing you can do when building a model is to have that freedom. I'm used to building things like Star Trek vessels or monster kits... kits that have data everywhere about how they're supposed to look. But since this model was from a show whose ships honestly had very little consistency visually (the thruster color, for example), and since this model was basically someone else's garbage and was missing parts and was on its way out, I felt free to use my imagination more. There was something particularly rewarding about taking something that had pretty much been forsaken, and making it better than it ever should have been when it first rolled off the assembly line in 1978. Kind of like if I were to start working out really hard. Yeah, kinda just like me, except for the 1978 part.
I thought about contacting the eBay seller, to show him what happened to his old cast-off kit. But he might not want to sell another old model for so cheap next time...
THE GRATUITOUS PICS
So enough of the talk. What would a model completion be without a pile of excessive, gratuitous pics!? If you have the soundtrack cd to BSG, now would be a good time to insert the disc and go to track #6: "The Cylon Base Ship/The Imperious Leader." Turn to full blast.
|Though it's not "canon," I'm still pleased with how these thrusters turned out.|
|For 99 cents, folks.|
|This pic shows a lot of additional plastic pieces that were added to pump up the appearance of the underside. Of course, now it will not be visible most of the time!|
|Check out the tiny slither of plaster that I cut and glued to solve the fit problem right above the "hubcap" in the center of the tail.|
|The underside isn't this light in value. I guess the white tabletop makes it appear a lighter grey than it truly is.|
|Here you can see the narrower pinstripes, which I prefer over the thick 70s-looking ones.|
|This side has nice weathering on the wing.|
|An unexpected light effect: the winglights underneath shine down on both sides, like searchlights. And making an appearance: my new Weller soldering iron.|