The 1978 version of the Galactica has always been one of my favorite sci-fi subjects. I’ve spent years studying the original filming model and I even designed and helped build a replica that became a centerpiece of Battlestar Galactica: The Exhibition in Seattle, Washington USA.
In all this time, however, I had never laid eyes on the original studio miniature. I’m fortunate to know the owner of the model. He has gone to great lengths (and expense) to rescue and preserve many of the original filming miniatures from both Galactica and Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. He had even asked me to help him replace some missing parts that were no longer on the Galactica. Unfortunately, he lives on the opposite side of the country from me. So, until now, I had not been able to make the trip.
All that changed when we received news of an officially licensed project that is in the works. It seems the time had come to photograph the models once again, so we needed to replace the missing parts right away.
I was very lucky that my good friend and faithful assistant, Richard Lindstrom, was able to make the trip with me. We would have just two days to help prep all the models for shooting.
Prior to the event, we had spent years researching the original model, pouring over vintage photos to try and find missing parts. We were aided in our efforts by our good friend Phil Curl from Australia. George Takacs of Timeslip Creations also donated some parts to the effort. The week before we left, I shipped several boxes of tools and model parts so they would arrive in time for us to do the work.
Specific details of exactly what we did will have to be kept confidential until after the new project comes to light. But, I can say that we restored a number of parts that had been missing since right after the model was filmed back in 1978.
We also replaced some of the details that had been added when the model was restored many years ago that proved to be incorrect. We were lucky to have access to some new reference that was not available before. With careful study, and a good bit of detective work, we discovered a number of details that had not been previously known.
The whole trip was a whirlwind and it was one I will never forget. We all worked really hard and the models looked absolutely stunning when they went in front of the camera. E. James Small (SmallArtWorks.ca) was in charge of photography and he also helped us prep for the shoot by carefully matching the color of the models and painting all the parts we brought. Everyone worked together smoothly as a team and we got a lot accomplished in a very short period of time.
I am very thankful to have been given the honor of participating in this event. I can’t thank the owner of the models enough for providing us this opportunity. Thank you most of all to Richard, Phil, and Jim for all your hard work. What a fantastic and talented group of guys. It was a pleasure working with you all!