Thursday, March 26, 2015

Resin Kit Review: Resin Modeler 1:1400 Borg Probe ("Coffin" Ship)

NOTE:  You can click on most pictures to get a larger view of them.

[Editor's Note (May 2016): This will mark my second re-write of this article.  Now that I've written a bunch of articles, I feel like I've developed a certain style and flow to them and I wanted to make all of them have that same feel across the series.  Consider this the REFIT version of the original article.]

For my next review, I'd like to focus on Resin Modeller's 1:1400 scale Borg Probe ship which has also been called the "Coffin Ship" because of it's shape.

Resin Modeller's Recommended Paint Scheme

This ship appears in the Star Trek Voyager episode called "Dark Frontier".  It also supposedly is in the The Next Generation Episode called "I, Borg", however, it is totaled on the planet so we don't see much of it.

The Borg probe kit comes in 6 pieces and quite frankly is quite a hefty piece of resin, hence it's slightly higher price tag.  The finished model measures in at around 13 to 14 cm.


I interviewed Adam, who owns and operates Resin Modeler about this kit.  When I asked him how long it took him to design it, He said that the hand made ones, which this kit falls into the category of usually took him about three to five weeks to create.

If you are interested in reading more about this model right from the source, or wanting to purchase it, feel free to go HERE.

 
 
 
 
DeepSpace Pat's Paint Scheme

This kit excited me because there really are no other Borg kits available to the modeling community.  

I quickly learned though that this model was not for the faint of heart.  Due to the way that this kit had to be poured, there is some very thick excess resin that needs to be removed to make the model look good.  I am in no way faulting the maker of the kit.  Given the weird shape and texture of the ship, I'm sure that this issue is probably quite common.  

 

I initially tried cutting it with an exacto knife, but the resin is so thick that this became a futile exercise and resulted in me cutting my own finger.  Luckily I have a Dremmel and was able to grind the excess resin away with that.

As I state in my disclaimer section below, the nature of resin kits is such that your kit may not be this difficult, however mine was so you should be prepared just in case.

Because I wasn't perfect in my trimming, I was unable to get all the parts to sit flush with each other.  This required some extra putty work in order to fill the gaps.

 

At this point, I wasn't really concerned.  Although Borg ships are symmetrical in shape, their surface texture does not necessarily have to be even matched across the whole ship.

And I was right in this assumption as after it was painted all black, you really didn't notice the putty work unless you got really up close and personal with my model.

I ended up being very happy with the end product.  It looks good with the rest of my Borg fleet.



Conclusion

For as neat as this kit is, it was not as easy as a build as I first thought.  In fact, the initial prep work was pretty difficult and would have been far worse had I not had the dremmel handy.  Since my ultimate goal with these reviews is to advise beginner to intermediate modelers, I would have to not recommend this kit to a beginner modeler or someone first starting out in the resin kit building world.  I would also make sure you have some sort of grinding equipment handy in case you run into the same excess resin issue that I had.  I would like to reiterate though, for as much work as I had to do, I still find it a good kit.
  
I hope you found this article as useful and informative as I did while writing it.  Please feel free to leave any comments, questions or suggestions below.

And as always, "Live Long And Prosper!"

Additional Links To Photos Of My Collection:

Helpful Hint Articles



NOTE: If you are new to my reviews, then please read on.  This section talks about the garage kit maker that made this kit as well as a little about why I'm writing this review.  If you are one of my regular readers, then feel free to skip the rest of this article as it is a word for word repeat of stuff from previous articles.

Kit Maker Information

Adam who owns and operates Resin Modeller does most of his business through his website.  He will also occasionally sell his kits through eBay, however, it is always recommended to go to his website for orders.  Although he does not maintain a FaceBook page for his business, he does post his work in progress stuff over at the All Scale Trek forums.

R.M.'s Website: CLICK HERE
R.M.'s eBay Seller Profile: CLICK HERE

A majority of all of Adam's kits are produced via 3D design software and then professionally 3D printed.  He then uses these as his masters in the mold making process.  In my opinion, this produces a very crisp model.

In my dealings with Adam, I find him to be a very nice guy to chat with.  He will usually answer inquiries within a day or two of being emailed.  Like most garage kit makers, he has a regular day job, and the kit building business is his way of funding his love of building models.  He has shared that he has found a lack of 1:1400 scale ships and since that is his preferred size to build in, he just makes the ships he wants for his collection.  

DISCLAIMER SECTION

I consider myself an intermediate model maker.  I'm pretty good with assembling kits these days  and OK on the painting side of things.  I ultimately end up with ships that look good enough to me to display in my collection.  I've found that there are all sorts of neat ships out there that no one has made a pre-built or pre-painted model of, so, in an effort to expand my ship collection I've turned to building them myself, either by kitbashing or purchasing ready made resin model kits.

There are several smaller garage kit makers out there that produce some very good kits.  I've actually developed a good relationship with a couple of them and volunteered some of my time to write up reviews about the kits I've purchased from them.  I have already warned them that I intend to be pretty objective, not pull any punches, and these reviews are going to be written from the point of view of an intermediate model builder.  If this means that I warn away a first time builder from a particular kit, then they will need to be OK with that approach.

Lastly, due to the nature of resin casting, not every kit is going to be the same.  Excess resin and air pockets are a part of the game when you get into this sort of model building.  The kit that I got and built may be slightly different than your kit as far as minor quality issues.  I will still point out flaws with my kit as those flaws could lead into a lesson of some sort for either you the reader or the kit maker themselves.

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