Star Trek USS Defiant

Published: August 26th, 2014     
Product Image
Box Art
Reviewed by: Tom Pope - IPMS# 47261
Scale: 1/420
Company: Round 2 Models
Price: $26.99
Product / Stock #: AMT845
Product provided by: Round 2 Models

Introduction

When the space station Deep Space 9 got caught up in the conflict with the Dominion over control of a stable wormhole, one of Starfleet's responses was to provide support in the shape of the USS Defiant. The Defiant was a new ship design for Starfleet and incorporated new, powerful weapon systems and even a cloaking device. Once the bugs were worked out of the new design, the defiant proved to be a powerful weapon in the fight against the Dominion.

Almost 20 years ago, AMT first released their model kit of the Defiant during the run of TV's Deep Space 9 series. In January 2014, Round2 rerelease the Defiant under the AMT name. Round2's re-released Defiant kit, like all those kits from the Star Trek series, are delivered in a sturdy box with colorful new artwork.

I would like to thank Round2/AMT for providing this re-release of Deep Space 9's, USS Defiant to IPMS USA for review.

In the Box

When you open the sizable box you will find a total of 17 parts, a decal sheet and a double-sided black-and-white foldout with the build instructions on one side and a painting guide and decal placement guide on the reverse side. The ship's hull is comprised of two halves and you will end up with an 18 inch long model when everything is complete. After the 8 parts required to complete the ship's hull, the remaining 9 parts are simple external details. Once the Defiant is complete, it can be displayed on Round2's large dome display stand that is also provided.

Construction/Finishing

With only 17 parts you would think the Defiant would go together in just a couple hours. When you have assembled the first 8 parts, including the fuselage halves and fore and aft engine pod bulkheads, the build is 98% complete. Truth is however, since the hull halves are so large, a good deal of bending, twisting and tweaking is required to get the joints to line up properly, particularly in the area where the bulkheads meet the fuselage. After you have accomplished all work to line up the fuselage halves, apply a good bead of liquid cement along the entire mating surface of the halves and compress and hold the halves together with clamps and/or tape. Then you need to set it aside for a few hours (or a day) to be sure in dries completely. Once dry, the Defiant is nearly finished and you need to start thinking about how you are going to mask and paint the ship. The area where the front and rear bulkheads join the hull halves requires quite a bit of attention with filler putty and sandpaper so be prepared and patient.

With all of the filling and sanding complete, the base color can be applied to the ship. Once the base color was completely dry, the fun of masking and painting that complex paint scheme could begin. I would have thought by now Round2 or some third-party would have developed an aftermarket decal set or adhesive paint mask kit so I searched but came up empty handed. The ship has very fine, raised panel lines that coincide with the pattern of colors. The lines make it easy to mask to follow the TV production model color scheme but you can always do your own thing. You are going to need a lot of masking tape though. Once the final paint scheme is thoroughly dry, a clear coat will seal the paint and give the decals something to adhere to. These are the same decals as in earlier releases of this kit and they go on nicely and respond well to setting solution. The only issue I had with the decals is on the red strips that flow aft from the ships name. There is a little interference with 3 raised bumps along either side of the hull but this can be worked out. After the decals are dry, another clear coat seals the entire ship. I used a generic clear coat and it had no adverse effects on the decals.

After completing and looking over the model, I probably would have chosen slightly different shades of the paint used for camouflage scheme and applied lighter, more subtle colors that didn't contrast as much so my advice here is to test a few different colors to find some that suit your tastes.

Conclusions

Even though there are only 17 parts, this model of Star Trek's USS Defiant is a skill level 2 kit and is recommended for modellers with a little more experience than the novice. You have to pull out a few tricks to get this kit assembled and painted. On the other hand, younger builders end up with a sturdy model that can be taken off the shelf and 'flown around the room'.

A ship this size is well suited for lighting. The quick search of the Internet will yield a third-party company that makes a set of clear engine bulkhead parts that can be used to light the Defiant's engine pods.

Thanks again to Round2/AMT for helping keep the Star Trek genre alive with these great re-releases and the new Star Trek kits and for providing this kit for review. Thanks also to IPMS USA for giving me the chance to review it.

  • Instructions 1
    Instructions 1
  • Instructions 2
    Instructions 2
  • Decals
    Decals
  • Parts
    Parts
  • Fuselage Gap
    Fuselage Gap
  • Taped Tightly
    Taped Tightly
  • 12 Parts Down, 5 to Go
    12 Parts Down, 5 to Go
  • Masked for Light Blue
    Masked for Light Blue
  • Completed Top 1
    Completed Top 1
  • Completed Underside
    Completed Underside
  • Completed Back
    Completed Back
  • Completed Side
    Completed Side
  • Completed Top 2
    Completed Top 2

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