1/144 Space Shuttle Endeavour

 by Pete Malaguti

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This is the Revell 1/144 Space Shuttle with Boosters kit, that I've had for over 25 years. It was built way back then, but poorly. So, recently, I disassembled it and reassembled it with a little more attention to detail, as STS 100. (This flight had Canadian Astronaut Chris Hadfield perform a couple of EVAs.)

An engine skirt on one of the boosters was missing, so I re-created it using an unused 1/72 Shuttle engine bell. I shaved of the ribs, sanded it smooth and cut it off with a razor saw and it fit perfectly!

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The External Tank needed some extra details and I scratch built the fuel line umbilicals as well as another fuel line and supports that were missing from the model. Some details at the base of the ET were also added.

On the SRB's I used a combination of Real Space and homemade decals.

The Orbiter itself is covered in household aluminum foil painted four different shades of white, cut into small squares, and applied with Microscale Micro Metal Foil Adhesive. I find that aluminum foil is a wonderful material. It's very thin and accepts paint and glue very nicely.

I also used the Cutting Edge Tile decals which really enhance the look of this model. (I've darkened them on the upper surface of the Orbiter with a wash of flat black paint.) On the bottom of the Orbiter, I've also included the fuel line connection points, made from homemade decals. I created them in Adobe Illustrator and printed them on my inkjet printer. (I created my own decals, in Illustrator, for this model, because most of the aftermarket decals just aren't accurate. Specifically the cockpit windows. They're all incorrect when referring to the middle windows on each side. For instance, the top edge should be straight across.) The wing leading edge RCC panels are also painted aluminum foil and applied individually. The six Reaction Control System thrusters on the top of the nose were drilled out and replaced with the tubes from cotton swabs.

Click on images below to see larger images

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

The Main Engines bells, are from Real Space, and were painted a tint of Gunmetal and 'weathered' with white pastels. It was easy to apply it and scrub it in to get just the right shade of grey on the engines. And if I overdid it, I removed it with a little water. At the base of the tail I've also built the Drag chute compartment.

Finally, I added some shades of brown pastel to the sides of the Orbiter to simulate the patterns created after a few re-entries into the atmosphere.

I used a lot of photo references, available on NASA's website, but one of the best references was Dennis R Jenkins book, Return to Flight, Space Shuttle Discovery, which has some spectacular photos!

This model does, admittedly, have a couple of small errors but I'm having so much fun re-discovering this hobby and exploring all the techniques you guys have pioneered that I trust you'll overlook them.  ;-)

Thanx again Steve for maintaining a wonderful website and allowing us to display our models!

Thanx for looking!

Pete

Photos and text by Pete Malaguti