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AMT/Ertl 1/650 scale USS Enterprise cutaway

Kit: No. 8790
Scale: 1/650
Manufacturer: AMT/Ertl, P.O. Box 500, Dyersville, IA 52040-0500
Price: $31.95
Comments: Injection molded, 37 parts, decals.

THE LARGEST KIT yet of the television version of the "Star Trek" USS Enterprise (NCC 1701) comes as a cutaway commemorative for the show's 30th anniversary.

Only 37 parts make up this Enterprise. The cutaway feature is the main emphasis of the kit, and there is little exterior detail.

Cutaway kits are unusual enough, but this one has a unique feature: a large decal represents much of the cutaway detail in the primary hull (saucer). You can use this decal alone, or fasten the cutaway face over it for a more three-dimensional look. That's what I did on my model.

The 10-step instructions guide you through assembly, and the parts fit well. Detail painting guides are provided for the secondary hull and engine nacelle cutaways, but you'll have to rely on the decal and the box illustrations to detail the primary hull cutaway. After you paint the details on the cutaways, the effect is convincing.

I used Polly Scale acrylics to paint the Enterprise: white for the exterior, light gray for the interior, then fire red, oxidized aluminum, and RLM 24 blue for the details. I applied the kit decals after a clear gloss coat, then sealed them with clear flat.

The finished model is 22" long with a span of 12". I enjoyed the 30 hours I put into this model, but I wish there were more exterior detail to match the interior. It's a simple build, but detail painting will require intermediate-level skills.

Chad Kashishian

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