By Jeffrey Griffin - images & text © 2007
Two years ago I had the privilige of receiving advanced copies of VA Miniatures K'T'Inga-class Klingon Battlecruiser, the first non-StarFleet ships that company ever produced. We've not had any other Klingon ships represented from the VA Mini's line since that time. That has now changed.
Image: Rear view
Image: Right/rear view, finished
Image: Compared with the K'tinga
I was fortunate enough to receive an advanced review copy of the kit directly from VA Miniatures. I'm happy enough w/the initial buildup to have purchased two more for my ever-growing Klingon Fleet in 1/2500 scale. It's an original design from Victor that is meant to be a post-TMP Era Klingon Battlecruiser, sort of a "Lost Years" Klingon ship. While I like this design, it also leaves me feeling somewhat lacking in the area of feeling "threatened". I don't get the same sort of feeilng of this ship being a predator that I do from the K'T'Inga. More on that later, though.
What You Get
The kit consists of a 5 pieces: main hull, command upper decks, two nacelle and shuttlebay section. The kit comes in a plastic bag with an card stock "cover", as most VA Miniatures kits do. Inside the bag w/the parts is a decal sheet with minimal decals. This decal sheet is by JT Graphics and includes the Klingon Trefoil's for the top and bottom of the secondary hull, one small and one large. You also get markings similar to that found on the Klingon Bird-of-Prey and the Q'Ono's Wah from ST:VI and some Klingon script. There are no decals for the impulse vents, as there were on the K'T'Inga. As with the majority of VA Minatures kits there is no stand.
The kit required some minor bit of clean up, as with almost every resin kit that I've ever purchased. Use of an Xacto blade and sand paper/sanding stick is a must, though is minimal. There were no voids in my sample, though there were some minor surface imperfections. I'm not sure if they're indicative of problems w/the master of the mold, but most of them were only noticable once I shot some primer on the model. These imperfections required some minor filling w/putty and/or careful sanding to even them out. Parts fit was just fine and required only CA to get the parts mated up after sanding. The model itself comes out to " long, " wide and " tall.
Usually, I paint my Klingon ships in a dark green shade, specifically OD Green. However, for this buildup, I decided to allow for more detail to show - especially when the models are photographed - so went with a lighter shade. I used Model Master SAC Bomber Green (FS) - a color I generally reserve for my Romulans, but chose because it was the only color I had in a rattle can (I got lazy, plus my compressor is dead) that looked right. I highlighted the panels on the hull by using OD Green. The fronts of the Bussard collectors and impulse engines are painted Model Master Flourescent Red, other panels were painted Model Masters Medium Grey, w/the weapons turrets, photorp tubes, underside "pipe" for the neck and topside neck strip all being Model Masters Jet Exhaust. All details other than the base coat were brush painted - and yeah, it shows.
I didn't seal the model with a gloss coat, but applied the decals straight to the model. Using the usual combination of Micro Set and Micro Sol, the decals went on smoothly enough. After giving them 12 or so hours to fully dry, I covered the whole thing with a light coat of dullcote.
I used a base from Millenia Models International for the model (also available from Federation Models). After a very minor bit of cleaning up, I covered the base w/Rust-oleum Automobile Primer and painted the base Rust-oleum Flat Black. I used the following Model Master paints for the Klingon Trefoil - Zinc Chromium, Gloss Red (actually, standard Testors!), French Blue and OD Green. For the stand portion, I used a clipped length of brass rod from a wire coat hanger, painted the rod flat black and then sealed the whole thing w/Dullcote.
This kit was a lot of fun to assemble. I've always been a big fan of original designs and my Klingon Imperial Fleet was in dire need of some fresh blood. There are only so many KBoP's and K'T'Inga's you can use as "army builders" before it looks more like a clone army - and this design looks definitively Klingon while looking a bit different. While it doesn't quite represent a predator as the Klingon K'T'Inga-class battlecruiser or B'rel-class BoP do, it still looks like a warrior's ship. Perhaps a better name should have been "Warlord"?
I highly recommend this model to any Klingon fans out there. It goes together very easily, has clean lines and doesn't look too terrbily bad, in my opinion. It's also available at a very pretty fair price.
This page copyright © 2007 Starship Modeler. First posted on 15 August 2007.