This is the custom circuit board I built for the E. Based on Paul M. Newitt’s LS//100A design of 20 years ago, I modified the running lights circuit to drive incandescent bulbs for the underside primary hull – yellow LEDs always looked horrible to me. I’ve also added a 6V regulator so that the ports don’t dim whenever the running lights blink.
You may notice that this board is meant to be enclosed in the ship’s base – the light bulb you see is for the secondary hull and dorsal fibre optics that feed down the support stand. This means that I can replace the bulb, or any ICs, if necessary (Although you can’t see it in any of the photos, the teardrop section on the primary hull was sawed off so it can be lifted off and the light bulb inside (which lights the top and bottom sensor arrays and all fibre optics) can also be replaced).
To make the circuit board, I drew the schematic in MS Word and photocopied it onto clear acetate (image reversed). Holding the ink side down of the acetate onto a one-sided copper board, I then ironed over the design – the heat from the iron transfers the ink to the copper board. The board was then etched and isopropyl alcohol removed the ink afterwards, leaving the circuit as shown in enterprise (b&w) 2.JPG
Here you see the fibre optics from the secondary hull bundled together to fit down the support stand (They just point at the bulb).
The completed ship with first coat of black paint to cover any light leaks (This is the best photo of the fibre optic ports).
The finished product.
I used the decals from the Estes model rocket as they were the best available when I put this thing together. I painted the hull a soft grey/white, much lighter than the studio model but that’s how it appeared to me on TV.
The base I used is from the 3-ship Enteprise kit, which is why my circuit board was oval-shaped. The Enterprise insignia is quite deep which was perfect to enclose the heat sink on the 6V regulator chip (there are some vents cut into the insignia on the back for cooling).
Before anyone mentions it. I KNOW the oval emblem is really from TNG but I didn’t think I could cram all the ICs into just the Enterprise insignia shape!