What’s the best way to follow up with a completed build of a Miranda class vessel? Pull out another one….and start chopping it up! When Multi-verse Models came out with their Soyuz class conversion kit in 1/1400 scale, I leapt at the chance to pick up this slightly odd, over-gunned (or over-sensored), version of the Miranda that was kitbashed for the TNG episode “Cause and Effect.” It’s equally amusing to note that this kit is a conversion kit for yet another resin model – not something normally done, but I’m grateful that MVM and Starcrafts had come to an agreement in order for this kit to come to fruition.
The conversion kit came to me bagged, with tightly folded instruction protecting a very comprehensive set of decal sheets. The conversion consists of 1 styrene and 20 resin parts, including a simple dome base. Again, you WILL need the Starcrafts 1/1400 scale Reliant model to complete this ship. My donor kit will be this old Reliant that I no longer need, now that I’ve rebuilt a new one
The parts are all cleanly cast with very few bubbles present. All the parts have some small amount of flash that can be removed quickly with a sanding stick, and it’s clear from the shiny look to the parts that I’ll need to give them a good wash with warm water and detergent to remove any mold release agent. These are the basic rules of any resin model. On first inspection I don’t see anything with the kit parts that’s going to require any major cleanup.
The main part of the Soyuz kit is the extended hull that sits at the rear of the ship. This part seems to have some interesting surface texture on flat surfaces that I don’t really like….I’m going to sand this all smooth to match the rest of the kit parts and the donor kit. I’m not sure if this was just an artifact of the mold or if it was something that only happened to my particular kit, but it won’t take long to clean it up so I’m not fussed by it.
You can see here how the part will roughly fit on to the final Miranda hull. In order for this to be a smooth mating surface, the builder is required to grind down a moderate portion of detail on the donor kit. So that’s going to be….harrowing….but worth it in the end.
The kits instructions are all very nicely detailed and really help the builder along with tips on how to doctor the donor kit properly. He really spells it out for you to help you achieve the best look for the kit. And the decal sheets he provides are really beautiful. You get a choice of three names, plus all the extra hull decals that will really make this model pop. While I usually choose a ship name counter to the “popular” name that was shown on the television show, I think in this case I’m going to call mine the Bozeman, as it seem like the ship is still floating around in the 24th century and could still be pressed into service if need be.
My rating for this kit? Well, it’s conditional. Assuming you are a moderately experienced model builder, it’s a SOLID 5 stars. That’s the condition. You have to buy the donor kit, and you have to be comfortable enough to use a dremel to grind away some detail on that poor donor. I assume most people reading this can in fact do all those things. The kit is definitely more for mid-level to advanced modelers, but for someone who thinks they are a resin novice, let me offer you some advice: don’t sell yourself short. You’re better than you think. Also, don’t be afraid to get a kit even if you think it’s outside of your skill level. Maybe it is…..for now….but that won’t always be the case. If you like some of the more obscure ship designs out in the Trek universe, this is the model for you. Pick it up at Multiverse Models. You won’t be disappointed.