In 2014, Star Trek fans were treated to a captivating teaser trailer — a look at the upcoming fan-produced indie film “Axanar.” This production is a return to the Prime timeline of Trek, to a point that fans have long been interested in hearing about: the Four Years War with the Klingons, more than two decades before Kirk ever stepped foot on the original Enterprise. The Axanar production team has given us a slew of new and imaginative ship designs that brilliantly blend some of the 2009 Trek Reboot ships back in to the fold of TOS design ethics, and they gave the Klingons a ship they’ve been missing for some time — the D6 heavy cruiser. This ship combines elements of the older D4 class ship as well as the D5 from ST-Enterprise, and foreshadows the upcoming classic design D7 from the original series. It is, by all rights, a seriously kick-ass ship that is a force to be reckoned with for our heroes in the Federation.
Late last year, Starcrafts began working with the Axanar team to bring highly detailed 1/1000 and 1/2500 scale models out to fans who donate towards the production of the Axanar movie. These kits will be accurate to the nth degree, grown from the original CGI models, and detailed as only Starcrafts can do. When I saw they had released the 1/1000 scale model of the Klingon ship, I started saving my pennies…..these Axanar kits were very high on my list of “must have” display models.
The kit comes in the standard Starcrafts white cardboard box, well packed with plenty of foam peanuts protecting the parts. The model is cast in a light grey urethane resin with minimal flashing (some on the smaller parts as you’ll see). There are a pair of plastic bags keeping the small bits in place, and a good number of these are cast in clear resin to help with lighting. That’s right, we’re going to be able to LIGHT this beast! I was very excited to see that. First thing’s first: lets take the parts out and make sure everything is included.
Assembly directions and paint guide are comprehensive, which is great for a kit this detailed:
The kit is pressure-cast and virtually bubble free. I did find a small imperfection on the tip of one warp engine where the vent probably sealed before the last bit of air escaped, but it was easily fixed and filled with Vallejo Modeler’s Putty (great stuff BTW!) in less than 5 minutes. The main hull is cast almost as a solid piece, with a belly plate covering a space in the main hull just large enough to have wiring run through for the lighting into the head and engines. The neck is also stiffened with a brass tube, which will prevent any future sagging as well as provide an easy means to run small gauge wire down into the head bulb.
The clear parts included on the model are all pressure cast translucent resin. While not optically clear, they don’t have to be; we’re not trying to see IN the ship here, we just want to see the glow of windows and power units. Starcrafts provides a clear bulb for the main hull, along with clear inserts for the warp engines, rear warp engine caps, and clear parts for the upper and lower impulse engines.
As you can see in the pictures above, the warp engine clear insert fits in with almost zero gap to worry about. In fact, this may even require some mild sanding once primer is laid down on the kit! The fit for the impulse engines, on the other hand, may be a little fiddly. There are no actual locator tabs on these parts, and you will have to rely on visual queues and a small alignment “ledge” on the font of the engine to make sure they’re in proper position. The large gap between the opaque grey resin and the clear part is supposed to be there.
This kit has plenty of room for lighting, but some minor surgery is going to be needed to get your wiring down to the warp engines. I have a feeling that we should be using magnet wire of a fine diameter, and running it on the outside of the hull along the back of the “wings” down towards the warp engines. There is a small winglet that partially covers this section, so any extra fine wire in this area will only look like piping detail on the kit. Can’t go wrong with extra detail And speaking of details…check this out:
As is typical with Stracrafts kits, this one is just lousy with tiny details. Raised panel detail is all clean and sharp, and the smallest details (the guns here are less than .25 inches long) are very well represented, though they will need some cleanup with a new sharp Xacto blade.
As a parting image, here is a 1/1400 scale D5 alongside the 1/1000 scale D6 model. Personally I think the D5 is a bit too big to be called 1/1400 scale….in fact I think it looks great next to other 1/1000 scale subjects like this one!
The new Starcrafts Axanar partnership promises to deliver some seriously cool designs in the next year or so. The Ares will be the subject of an upcoming review very soon. In the meantime, this Klingon D-6 is going to be a fun build to complete, and will look great on our shelves when done! The model is no longer available through the now-defunct Axanar Productions, but you can still purchase a copy of this kit by emailing Starcrafts directly.