STAGE 51

 Return to the BUILD


“A new deck assembly combines with two previous builds to form a substantial deck panel cluster, fitted to the rear of your upper saucer structure.

 

Contents


Parts

Materials: The Deck Panel U2-10 is metal, but the remaining non-electrical parts in this stage are plastic.

Magazine – Issue 14

  • Assembly Instructions: Building the Model
  • Episode Guide 3.15: Yesterday’s Enterprise
  • Episode Guide 3.16: The Offspring
  • Episode Guide 3.17: Sins of the Father
  • Episode Guide 3.18: Allegiance

Build


Assembling a Deck Panel Cluster

Step A

Carefully remove four (4) Escape Pod Covers and seven (7) Dark Windows from their sprues and fit them into the back of Deck Panel U2-10, as shown.

Reminder: I sanded all of these windows down already. See The Windows page for more details:

As before, I used pieces of black electrical tape behind the Escape Pod Covers and Dark Windows to reduce light leak:

Retrieve your Deck Panel U3-19 assembly from Stage 49. Fit this Deck Panel to Deck Panel U2-10 aligning the screw holes:

Slide the LED of the Deck Panel Light into the top notch of the reflector, as shown:

Secure Deck Panel U3-19 to Deck Panel U2-10 with two (2) DM screws:

Carefully bend the leads of this LED on Deck Panel U3-19 towards the narrow end of the panel to make space for the upcoming reflector:

Retrieve your Deck Panel U3-20 assembly from the previous stage. Fit this Deck Panel to Deck Panel U2-10 aligning the screw holes:

Notice how this panel engages with the panel next to it:

Secure Deck Panel U3-20 to Deck Panel U2-10 with two (2) more DM screws:

From the top side, here is how this Deck Panel assembly looks. There are some small gaps that should close up when it is mounted to the skeleton:

Step B

We can test these lights by connecting the Deck Panel Lights cables to the PCB and Battery Box.

Fitting the Deck Panel Cluster

Step C

Retrieve your upper saucer assembly and thread these three Deck Panel Lights cables through the Upper Skeleton.

Upon test fitting this Deck Panel assembly, I realized the wiring could be routed better. Therefore, I removed a couple of the Reflector screws and slid this LED out:

Next, I routed the plug of the 4-wire Deck Panel Lights cable up through this opening in the Upper Skeleton:

Next, I fed the LED I just removed back down through this opening:

I slid the loose LED back into the Reflector and re-installed the screws. I also gently bent the leads of this LED straight up away from the panel (there is a notch in the Reflector they fit right into):

Finally, I routed the single LED of the Deck Panel Light cable included in this stage up through this opening of the Upper Skeleton:

Fit the Deck Panel cluster to the Upper Skeleton, as shown:

When fitting this Deck Panel cluster to the skeleton, there are a couple of things to pay attention to. First, the narrow end of the cluster needs to slide under the tab of the inner panel (circled below). I loosened the screws of that panel to make this easier. Second, it will take some force to slide this cluster far enough towards the center of the saucer so all six screw posts ‘pop’ into their matching mounting holes on the Upper Skeleton (arrows below):

Once this was fitted on my model, there was a problem. I had this huge gap due to some kind of obstruction:

It turned out that there was some extra metal ‘flashing’ on the edges of two of the adjoining panels that was getting in the way:

After removing both of these raised ‘ribs’ with a flat needle file, the panel fit into the Skeleton just fine:

Begin securing the Deck Panel cluster into place with six BM screws.

This is your friendly reminder to try using 3-in-One Oil on all screws going into metal:

Finish securing the Deck Panel cluster to the skeleton with four (4) CP screws.

As I was securing this outer section of the Deck Panel cluster, I ran into a manufacturing defect of my Upper Skeleton. This corner of the skeleton frame was bent at a weird angle and would not line up with the screw post below it:

I attempted to bend it back straight with some wide duck bill pliers. This worked, but snapped the skeleton along the way. Fortunately, this particular section of the skeleton is not load bearing, so I simply moved the broken piece to the side:

With this crisis averted, I installed the CP screws as per the instructions:

Connect the two 4- pin Deck Panel Light plugs from Deck Panel U3-19 and Deck Panel U3-20 to these sockets marked ‘A’ on Saucer PCB 2:

Connect the 2-pin Deck Panel Light cable (from this stage) to one of the smaller sockets marked ‘B’ on Saucer PCB 2:

Thoughts


It has been a few months since I received any shipments for this build, so I am happy to be back at it! By adding this Deck Panel cluster, we have now covered the majority of the upper saucer hull with only a few panels to go. Keep the unused Nacelle Lower Frame nearby as it will be needed in the next stage.

Next Up


Stage 52 – Deck Panel U1-09, Windows/Reflector/Lights, Transporter Emitter Pad, Nacelle Front Lower, EM Field Projector

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