Federation Escort Frigate (FFE)
U.S.S. Victory, NCC-880

Minor Conversion 1:3788 Scale Amarillo Design Bureau Gaming Miniature

Copyright 2011 Jim Lewis/GunTruck Studios
All Rights Reserved Worldwide

Finishing materials and sequence can be found here on this page.

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Continuing what turned out to be a summer of Franz Joseph inspired starship modeling in 2011, I used some spare parts to create my own Escort Frigate - inspired by this fine artwork from the Starship Schematic Database.

Though not an official ADB Star Fleet Battles design, it lends itself well to creating an SSD for playing within the game system and isn't so overly armed as to be problematic for inclusion.

Using Amarillo Design Bureau's Starline 2400 gaming miniatures, this is a quick and simple modification of the parts from the Federation Tug. It maintains the attractive lines of the Ptolemy-Class Tug and immediately looks purposeful in mission and intent - right at home with the rest of the Franz Joseph-style starships.

Converting the parts is easy even for a novice modeler, as you are basically building the Federation Tug without the Cargo Container. For my rendition, I trimmed the Neck down to a stub - for two reasons. One, I wanted a sturdy section to drill into for mounting the gaming miniature to a stand. Two, I wanted to add something simple to represent additional Engineering space in the starship, and I got a place to mount an additional Phaser for defending the rear arc of the vessel to bout. On the upper surface of the Primary Hull, I trimmed away the Phaser mounts for the Tug and added four new Phaser blisters using what I had on hand at the time - Grandt Line #152 Rivets. About an hour's work in cleanup and modifications and you'll be ready for painting and finishing.

As this is not an official ADB Star Fleet Battles design, it does not appear in the Starship Names Registry. Neither is there a listing in John Bullerwell's Starfleet Registry, covering virtually all vessel names canon and fandom but none of this class or type of warship, so you have a lot of latitude in christening your own miniature(s). As there are no individual decals sheets done for USS Victory, I cobbled them together using Starfighter Decal sets for 1:3788 scale Star Fleet Battles miniatures. It does take awhile to line up individual numbers and letters, but the end result is worth it. I added Combat Leader Rings to my miniature's upper hull as further adornment, and to match her weathered finish as representative of long and distinguished service defending the Federation.

Since Starfighter Decal sheets don't offer a "letter jungle" for you to put together ship names, I resorted to creating my own decals. It was actually very simple. I used Micro Mark #82272 Clear Decal Sheet fed through my desktop inkjet Brother Multi-Function combination FAX/Printer/Scanner/Copier. This is about as simple as it gets for making your own decals. I printed the ship's name in 3-point Federation Regular font, applied three light coats of Krylon #1303 Crystal Clear acrylic spray coating as a clear fixative over the printing, and was off the the races in about an hour start to finish. The Krylon acrylic finish provides a moderately tough carrier for the printing that can stand gentle repositioning once you separate it from the decal sheet and apply it to the model. I only had to work it over a drop or two of water to get it into proper alignment, and it won't be so thick to cover up and blend into the final finish.

I did the same for my Federation Command Cruiser USS Balson at the same time, as I was finishing it at the same time as USS Victory. I chose Federation Regular as the font for these two ships to set them in a different time period (later) than the AmarilloUSAF-style lettering seen on TOS-era ships - which is sometimes speculated in fandom as a font style appearing on Federation ships between the time of the original television series and the movie era vessels. I like this concept and wanted to follow suit. USS Victory would be joining my four Balson-Class Command Cruisers in this time period.



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