I am going to post this build log in multiple parts. I am still a long way from completing the model, and there will be many steps along the way. This post is part one of an ongoing Work-In-Progress project. (hopefully the first of many)
From the get-go, I decided that I was going to try to paint this model in parts. There are a lot of hard-to reach spots, especially in among the engines and along the lower gun deck. My plan of attack will be to assemble the two main hull halves and detail parts, but leave the two forward gun deck pieces and the engines separate through the priming and painting stage. To make that even remotely practical, I need to make sure that everything will fit after the paint has been applied, so I can minimize the last-minute corrections and changes that will be required after I glue the parts together. To achieve that goal, step one is to carefully dry-fit the parts and sand, sand, sand.
As you can see in the photo, I was using wet-dry sand paper (wet) to keep the resin dust to a minimum while I sand down the parts. You can't see my face, but I was wearing a respirator mask to keep whatever dust there was out of my lungs. Resin can be nasty stuff.
Once I had the two halves of the hull reasonably sanded down, and free of flash, I set about filling the gap between them. After fiddling around with a couple of options, I pulled out some styrene sheet from my supply pile. It turns out that 0.060" sheet styrene is just about a perfect fit as a filler material for this model. I proceeded to cut and fit sections of styrene along the interior perimeter of the hull.
I left a bit of a recess along the edges of the gap so my ship would retain the "groove" along its center line after I was finished.
Next time: More sanding and my efforts to construct a removable base.