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Galaxy Quest NSEA Protector from Pegasus Hobbies

Galaxy Quest fans, your spaceship has come in
By Aaron Skinner
Published: March 12, 2010
Product: Galaxy Quest (1999) paid homage and poked good-natured fun at Star Trek and its fans. In the film, the actors of a cult TV science-fiction show find themselves embroiled in a real-life Galaxy Quest onboard a real version of their model.

The film’s creators are clearly students of Star Trek, and much of the technology is a twisted version of the original. Key among that technology is the NSEA Protector. The designers appear to have channeled Star Trek’s USS Enterprise with a main hull that resembles the original’s secondary hull, and a circular engine layout.

As a modeler, I have always appreciated the scene near the climax when fanboy Brandon is holed up in his room building a model of the Protector; I’ve wanted to build my own model of the ship ever since.

Thanks to Pegasus Hobbies, my wish has come true with a 1:1400-scale Protector.

Assembly: Molded in heavy, gray plastic, the kit’s 40 parts show good engraved surface detail, including panel lines and windows. Clear blue parts provide engine intakes and exhausts.

Although the kit is not advertised as a snap-together model, most of the parts feature large locating pins that securely lock joins. The command ship is designed to separate from the main hull as seen at the movie’s end.

Pegasus included magnets, but the instructions don’t mention them. Builders should be mindful of the polarity to avoid the command section running away from the main ship. Pegasus marked one side of the disk magnets to denote the polarity; I checked twice before committing super glue.

A display stand emblazoned with a Galaxy Quest logo and fitted with a ball-and-socket head allows the model to be displayed at any angle. Well-printed decals provide all the markings, and a clear four-view diagram explains painting.

Under the “Painting Guide” heading, the instructions note that the kit is molded in ABS plastic, so methyl ethyl ketone-based glues, like Testors liquid cement, won’t work. It recommends Tamiya extra thin cement, Model Master liquid cement, or super glue for construction.

Most of the parts fit well. I used filler around the intake grille parts and to blend the engine pylons into the hull. The clear blue parts benefit from a coat of silver paint or foil on the back for reflectivity.

Marketing: Ten years on, Galaxy Quest remains popular, so fans will seek out the Protector. Adding a movie poster or having a TV with the movie’s trailer running near the display may reinforce the connection.

The kit is not complicated and would serve as a good introduction to painting and gluing for novice modelers. The finished model is sturdy and will stand up to some play. Be sure to recommend ABS plastic and the need for the right kind of glue. A can of white spray paint would also be a good suggestion.

Product: NSEA Protector NTE-3120
Maker: Pegasus Hobbies
Scale: 1:1400
Stock No.: 9004
MSRP: $29.99

  • Easy construction
  • Good detail and decals
  • Plastic requires specific glues
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