Reader reviews of a kit featured on Starship Modeler.

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Your Two Cents: USS Enterprise (refit)

The following are reader's opinions of the USS Enterprise (refit) made by Bandai.

Reviewer   Martin Burkey
Date Reviewed   May 7, 2003
Overall Rating       Well worth getting.
Comments Just some in-box observations:
1. Is it a model that looks like a toy? Is it a toy that you build like a model? Can you enter it in a model show? I'll bet there will be a lot of discussion.
2. Engineering for ease of assembly and fit seems to set new standards.
3. Is it the ultimate Enterprise kit? I would say 'yes' if you're willing to do some improvements. I question how many people want to commit to that kind of work on a $70-90 kit that's admittedly pretty nice right out of the box.
At this scale, seam lines would be obvious, so you'd want to fill them and re-paint. The pre-painted panels and markings are attractive, but the accent colors too dark at this scale; the double red stripes around the bridge section are too thick; and some window openings appear too large. Together, they yield a toylike effect. I'm not cozy with the idea of adhesive strips to cover the nacelle pylon wiring.
What you wind up with is something roughly akin to the Art Asyllum NX-01 or some of the well-done Hallmark ornaments or Franklin Mint replicas. This is the way the industry is going in order to lure people into modeling but the lure of pre-painting and glueless assembly are offset by the cost.

But these are just nits. If you hate to glue, fill, paint and decal, the Bandai E is easily your starship of choice. Personally, I'd prefer a larger scale with the same attention to detail and fit, delete the window holes and electronics, add aftermarket quality decals and a complete set of adhesive paneling masks. And bring down the price. Bring on the Polar Lights Trek kits!

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