Can the lights burn out in my Bandai 1/850 Enterprise model?

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Can the lights burn out in my Bandai 1/850 Enterprise model?

Post by manrhea » Sat Aug 22, 2015 9:46 pm


The lights have quit working on my beloved USS Enterprise refit model by Bandai that I've had on display since 2004. I thought it just needed new batteries but it no longer gives any indication of lighting up at all. It's been well kept in a shelf and still looks in pristine condition, the lighting has always worked fine ever since I built it and the lights have rarely been on a but a few minutes at a time. I would estimate the lights have only been on no more than 2 hours in it's entire lifespan. The batteries of course drain very quickly so they've been replaced a few times and it always has returned to full brightness but somehow sitting in a shelf it has suddenly malfunctioned. :(

I've jiggled the little slide switch every way possible, it feels the same as always and can't imagine how any connections within the model itself could suddenly lose contact. Is it possible the lights are just burned out? Would one dead bulb prevent all the rest from lighting up? I removed the display arm from the base and everything appears to make good contact from that perspective so before I attempt to detach the arm from the model and check the connections I just wanted to see if anyone else has had this same problem.

I don't even know how to remove the little plug piece in order to slide back the display arm and detach from the lower hull. Just a quick attempt to pry the plug loose made small scratches in the paint so I decided to wait and seek help here first. If it is just a loose connection I sure hope it is in the base as I would not begin to try and disassemble the model and replace anything. I'm sure it would never go back together quite the same again. Anyone have any suggestions for testing the connection or removing the base arm without destroying the model? I know the model is old and I'm happy it's lasted this long but in no way is it worn out, it's been handled with care all these years and I was hoping to do some photography of it in all its fully lit glory but I'm afraid I waited too long. Any advice on how to fix this issue, short of buying a brand new kit? :|

Thank you in advance for any input.

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Post by brt » Sun Aug 23, 2015 10:15 am

Grain of wheat bulbs are not known for a long life. Did you glue your model together? If you just snapped it together, can you take it apart without damaging it? Do you have soldering skills to replace the bulbs with LEDs?
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Post by CessnaDriver » Sun Aug 23, 2015 12:48 pm

All of them going out isn't likely.

Loose connection or a short.
Start checking the contacts on the base for the batteries and especially where the base contacts the models contacts.

Failing that might take apart the base and check the switch contacts.

Or if you have a voltmeter check to see if there is stable voltage on the end of the base to make sure it is working.

Maybe you have another Bandai trek model with the same base? You can try that.

If your confident the base is good, then yeah, time to start seeing if you can crack the model open. Which sucks but maybe it's possible if no glue was used.

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