Well, once again, I ended up re-plowing old ground, in order to do an even better build than before.
No one who is serious about Star Trek model "authenticity" will deny that the old AMT Shuttlecraft model had "issues." The hull was the wrong shape, the scale was erroneously reported to be "1/32," when it was actually about 1/40, and the interior had little real detail, except for the seats and the forward instrument panel.
We did our best to improve that model, using available add-on products from HDA Modelworks, Larsen Design and Outer Space Outfitters, and the LED-illuminated results looked good, but it was still held by the original flaws built into the kit.
Right about the time I was in the last phases of the AMT build, Cult TV Man informed me that a new kit was pending from Polar Lights - a true 1/32 scale Shuttlecraft "Galileo" Kit, due for release in early 2020. The photos of the prototype were incredible. It's exterior was properly shaped, there was a much greater depth of external detail and a side door that could be done open or closed. I signed up for the pre-order immediately.
Once the kit arrived, we set about planning the execution of the build, such as LED locations, colors to be used and the like. But the biggest "issue" with the new kit was no interior whatsoever - not even seats.
I found out that this "give-up" was done on purpose, so that Polar Lights could get the kit molded and into the market as quickly as possible, and that they planned to have an interior "add-on" kit later. "Later?" How much later? Unknown. So, I decided to look elsewhere.
Up until now, the best model yet made of the Shuttlecraft was a resin kit done by Randy Cooper of Randy Cooper Designs, which was also 1/32 scale, and detailed to a fault! But, at over $400 for the complete kit, it was not practical you me, anyway. The Polar Lights kit was finally a major-market attempt to draw even with the Cooper model, but without interior detail, it was still short.
Randy decided that an interior for the Polar Lights kit was a new market for him, as well, so he decided to sell his own add-on kit for the PL Galileo, which included sidewalls, overhead lighting panel, forward console, floor, seven seats and aft bulkhead and equipment room. I signed up for one right away, and good thing, too, because Polar Lights called Randy and "asked" him to stop selling the add-on kits. I guess they didn't want outside competition.
So, our 1/32 Galileo has a Randy Cooper interior, along with 1/32 crew figures obtained through Shapeways.com. We used special multi-colored LEDs for the front right-side control panel, to replicate the look on the show. Sitting on its simulated Hanger Elevator display base, it's a thing of beauty.
For a more detailed look at the build process, go to the ShutterFly Album Page, dedicated to the construction of the Polar Lights 1/32 scale Shuttlecraft. Click the link below to go...