After all the hard work and effort spent on building your model, adding a nice looking nameplate to the base would be the finishing touch. In the past, I have gone to a local trophy shop to make a brass nameplate for a finished model, but unfortunately it
closed several years ago and the nearest one is not that close.
Model Monkey has stepped up and is now providing 3D printed nameplates in a variety of materials and sizes.

According to their website,
Model Monkey offers nameplates for over 1,400 subjects and not limited to ships – nameplates can be printed for aircraft, armor, airships and science fiction subjects, among others as well. The nameplates have a standard
design which consists of a decorative rope border and raised letter. For foreign ships, the nameplate can be printed with Cyrillic, Greek, Japanese, Chinese or Korean letters and characters if you wish. Nameplates are printed using Shapeways facilities,
which allows
Model Monkey to offer them in an inexpensive, paintable white acrylic "Smoothest Fine Detail Plastic" as well as several real metal materials, such as brass, bronze. Silver, 14k and 18k gold- and rose gold-plated brass and rhodium-plated
brass. The latter is silver in color and will not tarnish. For a period of time, the metal printed options were not available due to COVID-19 supply disruptions, but they are being offered again. However, I would suggest contacting
Model Monkey first to
confirm what is available.

The standard size for a nameplate is 7 centimeters long (2.75 inches), which will fit most needs including 1:700 scale ships. Plastic nameplates can be printed as large as 28 centimeters long (just over 11 inches) and metal nameplates up to 10 centimeters
long (just under 4 inches).
When I saw that Model Monkey was offering nameplates, I was curious and I reached out to Steve Larsen at Model Monkey. He offered to send one printed in the paintable white acrylic "Smoothest Fine Detail Plastic" material for my USS Sargo build
(the metal options were not available at the time) and to review. Since the model is 1:350 scale, Steve suggested a nameplate that is 10 centimeters long (just shy of 4 inches) and is 1.5 centimeters wide (a little more the 0.5 inches). The plate arrived very
nicely printed, with the rope border adding a handsome touch and the raised lettering done in a good sans serif font.

I washed the nameplate using dishwashing liquid and scrubbed with a toothbrush. After drying, I painted it using Krylon brass paint from a rattle can, and the paint adhered well. I could have left it as is but I wanted the lettering to standout more. Instead of
painting the lettering with black paint and a brush, which could be messy, I decided to use a black Sharpie been to color in the letters. It took a couple of passes allowing for drying in between, but I think the black letter with the brass background looks like
a nameplate from a trophy shop, but nicer with the decorative trim. Steve suggested using double-side tape to attach the nameplate to the base, but instead I used two-part epoxy to attach it flush to the wooden base.
I was very satisfied with the 3D printed nameplate and it adds an excellent finishing touch to the display my USS Sargo model. Next time I need a nameplate, I will certainly order one from Model Monkey.

Felix Bustelo
New York