By Larry G Johnson - images & text © 2008
TimeSlip Creations, makers of Battlestar Galactica capital and civilian fleet ships all in the same scale has ventured into fighters from the series.
Image: Cockpit sidewalls
Image: Engines and canopy (it's not that dark - the photo was tweaked so it could be seen)
Image: Cannon muzzles
Image: Cockpit parts
Image: Mold seams so faint ....
Image: You can barely see them
Image: Some flash on smaller bits though
Image: Assembly guide
Image: Finishing guide
This Viper Mk. VIIE is the first, as I've heard, in a series of BSG Fighters all in the same 1/32nd scale as the Revell TOS Viper. If this turns out to be true I'll be collecting all of them!
What You Get
You get a nice, sturdy box with a nicely printed cover card. Inside, with all the peanuts that ensure unbroken shipping and a mess all over the floor for the cats to play with, are 23 white resin parts including the big honkin' main fuselage piece, three engines, a detailed 5 piece cockpit, fins, wing tips, laser apertures and other various detail pieces. There is also a clear vacuformed canopy.
The parts are very cleanly molded with crisp detail. There are some minor mold seam halves that will easily sand away smooth. I can find no deformities or bubbles in my kit, just some pour stubs and some flash on the smaller parts. The most prominent pour stubs are some major remnants in the engine housing aft that will have to be sanded smooth for the engines to fit - but since the area will be covered by the engine exhausts, it's a not an area of great concern, just slightly difficult to reach.
ALPS-printed waterslide decals provide markings for several pilots and tail codes from actual series rosters, along with standard stencils, fleet markings and instrument panels for the cockpit. They are nicely registered and printed. I can't say how they will lay down on the model yet but they are a bit difficult to see being light gray on pale blue decal paper. I suggest good lighting when cutting them out.
The directions seem a bit basic but should get the job done adequately.
In ascertaining the accuracy of the kit I made a big mistake and almost made a fool of myself. I was comparing the kit to the Mk. VII Viper from the miniseries, capturing some shots of Apollo landing for decommissioning ceremony, and was listing page after page of errors. I mentioned this to John and he said, its not that Viper! Talk to George! So lucky enough, George was at the last club meeting and showed me my error. This is the Mk. VIIE from the Pegasus. After viewing some new pictures from Galatica Wiki and I'm happy to say that this kit is extremely accurate. This is NOT your Apollo's Mk. VII.
Upon first examination it looks like this kit will go together quickly and easily with little hassles. My only complaint in the kit design is no landing gear or pilot, making both on the ground and in flight displays impossible or unreasonable. It will take major surgery to carve out the bays and major scratchbuilding to detail them and add landing gear. Simpler to modify a 1/32nd scale jet jockey to look something like a colonial pilot and slip it in the cockpit.
Well it's a no brainer: if you want a large scale Viper Mk. VIIE, this is the only game in town. Fortunately the kit is beautiful and for the price it's a big model when finished, very reasonable - large scale, excellently molded and goes side by side by side with the Revell kit. I just hope the rumor I heard is true and we will see a Mk II, the original Mk. VII, Blackbird and dare I hope, a Raptor in this scale.
This page copyright © 2008 Starship Modeler. First posted on 30 October 2008.