Hobbyist Forums banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
885 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
When you look at the enterprise, do you see a complete ship or do you see a starship in 2 parts?

I tend to focus on the saucer section as a rule, it seems to be the part where all the drama happens and the main forcus of any given episode.

Is the tos enterprise essentially like one of the NASA shuttles - (saucer) with boosters attached (secondary hull)?

I was thinking about this when I was reading Matt Jeffries rationale behind the phase II refit - saying that the propulsion systems would be upgraded but the primary hull would have little reason to change much - was the secondary hull also secondary in nature to the rest of the ship?

Is the starship enterprise a saucer section propelled by a propulsion hull that can be simply swapped or uprgraded when needed?

what do you think?

Steve
 

·
Oxidation Genius
Joined
·
31,238 Posts
While looking modular as all get-out, I do look at it as a single entity ("Kirk to Entity!"). To me, the ability to upgrade or swap-out modules doesn't make it any less one complete vessel.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,453 Posts
I'd also say I look at it as one complete ship.

Jeffries also designed real functionality into the design.

The reason the nacelles are set away from the ship, is so that they could be jettisoned if needed.

The saucer can separate and function as a giant lifeboat also if needed.

Refitting a real world vessel, such as what was done to the 'E' in TMP is an amazing undertaking, but not impossible.

Look at the Essex class carriers of WWII. The ones that survived into the Vietnam era look NOTHING like they did when launched.

And I was on a cruise ship where I learned that at one point, the ship had been cut in half, and LENGTHENED. Glad I didn't find that out before I got on board.

In the Trek universe, I could see reasons for expanding the secondary hull, saucer, etc. Better propulsion could have meant more amount of mass could be moved by those engines and hence a 'lets make some more room' mentality could have prevailed.

Today, when the carrier Enterprise is decommissioned later this year, the ship will have to be nearly ripped apart (leaving no ship left for a museum) to get the reactors out. But in Treks time, while never seen, I'm sure there would be something like a 'construction transporter' where individual components like the intermix chamber could be beamed out of the hull and a new one beamed in, after other structural upgrades were made.

And rarely is postulated, what happens to the atoms when something like that is done? Replicators have to get their building blocks of matter from somewhere.
With recycling technology continuously improving, perhaps the materials of everything removed from the TOS ship, were recycled and replicated into the components for the refit. So she may really still be the same ole girl, just a little bustier.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,389 Posts
I see the ship as a whole when viewed from the angles used to film it. They were chosen for a reason because the ship does not look right from certain viewpoints. This is not me saying this, it came from the people who filmed it, both on the series and then for the films. When viewed from some of the rejected angles, I begin to see "parts" rather than a whole. She is truly a work of art, but like any great painting or sculpture how she is presented is make all the difference.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
885 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
All good points - I'm in the refit of TMP plausibility camp, I always thought they'd just whip off the skin, lengthen some supports, then re-plate this ship - I like to think of the original Constitution in there somewhere.

In my opinion, ToS made the original E an integral character in a way that was never replicated in any of the spin-offs - my emotional attachment to the ship was severed in star trek III, the 1701A just wasn't the same 'character' after that.

I guess I like to tie my trek down with a bit of old fashioned practical reality, it makes it more real to me than just flipping a switch and out pops a starship but i suppose it would be a lot like that - or big machines layering hull skins like a giant replicating pasta machine.

Its interesting to get others points of view on this,

Steve
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,863 Posts
I read a nice analysis once of the original design's appeal--that the primary hull was the "bow" which is always the most impressive part of any ship, and because this bow is a disc you're able to view the bow from almost any angle. The writer also described the warp engines and pylons almost like sails on a schooner, raised up and floating above the rest of the ship, while the rear of the engineering hull is clearly designed to look like the stern of a galleon with that scoop underneath and the shuttlebay occupying that upper space where windowed officer's quarters would be.
Obviously the designers of the 2009 Trek movie considered the original saucer so iconic that they retained a lot of its lines and proportions while radically changing other parts of the ship. I do see the design as a whole but the saucer is probably the pivotal element.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,969 Posts
However, they put the nacelles too close together, so that instead of the subliminal image of a great bird spreading her wings and preparing to soar, we get Beavis about to go on a Cornholio rant.
 

·
Curmudgeon
Joined
·
6,602 Posts
The reason the nacelles are set away from the ship, is so that they could be jettisoned if needed.
I don't recall the source, but I remember reading years ago that the nacelles were set away from the ship to protect the crew from radiation. Whichever version is correct (perhaps both?), it works.

However, they put the nacelles too close together, so that instead of the subliminal image of a great bird spreading her wings and preparing to soar, we get Beavis about to go on a Cornholio rant.
Hmmmm...I don't think I ever saw Beavis when I looked at the 2009 JJPrise, but I agree moving the nacelles so far inboard ruins the aesthetics of the original design. It just looks...awkward.

One thing I never understood about the design of any version of the Enterprise (from a practical, real-world perspective, that is) was why they would put the bridge on top of the primary hull so prominently. Since the bridge crew is looking at a viewscreen anyway, why not bury the bridge deep within the ship so it would be protected if/when the shields failed?

Back to the original topic, I've always viewed the Enterprise as a complete ship. Compartmentalized, certainly, with the primary hull being the "brains" and the secondary hull and warp engines being the "brawn", but functioning as one complete unit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,777 Posts
*snip*
One thing I never understood about the design of any version of the Enterprise (from a practical, real-world perspective, that is) was why they would put the bridge on top of the primary hull so prominently. Since the bridge crew is looking at a viewscreen anyway, why not bury the bridge deep within the ship so it would be protected if/when the shields failed?
This was a subject of great discussion when the -D was being designed, IIRC. With all the other major changes being lined up (away teams not landing parties, Capt. NEVER leads an away team but stays on ship, separate the saucer to keep the civies and families safe while the warp part goes and fights) the discussion turned to bury the bridge in the middle of the saucer and so on. Eventually Roddenberry made the decision to have an obvious bridge bulge because that gave the ship direction and helped orient the viewer. (Roddenberry did NOT like having to make 'either/or' choices. He seemed to have a sad need to not ever be the bad guy when it came to saying "yes, do this thing, sorry guy, we're not doing your thing". This ended up causing amazing amounts of friction during production)

And yes I do note the irony of how many of those early draft dictates evaporated like snowflakes on a hot griddle. :)

always a razor thin line to walk, rational, practical reality vs. the needs of creating drama and action.

Oh, count me in on the 'complete vessel' side.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
895 Posts
I don't recall the source, but I remember reading years ago that the nacelles were set away from the ship to protect the crew from radiation. Whichever version is correct (perhaps both?), it works.

Hmmmm...I don't think I ever saw Beavis when I looked at the 2009 JJPrise, but I agree moving the nacelles so far inboard ruins the aesthetics of the original design. It just looks...awkward.

One thing I never understood about the design of any version of the Enterprise (from a practical, real-world perspective, that is) was why they would put the bridge on top of the primary hull so prominently. Since the bridge crew is looking at a viewscreen anyway, why not bury the bridge deep within the ship so it would be protected if/when the shields failed?
I've always wondered about that too.

Maybe the reasoning is that if there is a shield failure no matter how deep you "bury" the command center it wouldn't make any difference as beam weapons could easily penetrate to any depth on a starship.
 

·
Curmudgeon
Joined
·
6,602 Posts
This was a subject of great discussion when the -D was being designed, IIRC. With all the other major changes being lined up (away teams not landing parties, Capt. NEVER leads an away team but stays on ship, separate the saucer to keep the civies and families safe while the warp part goes and fights) the discussion turned to bury the bridge in the middle of the saucer and so on. Eventually Roddenberry made the decision to have an obvious bridge bulge because that gave the ship direction and helped orient the viewer.
Considering the size of the primary hull on the NCC-1701-D, the bridge looked like a pimple on the buttock of a baboon anyway. I imagine consistency between the designs was a consideration, so it made sense not to make changes that were too severe or radical. I was never a big fan of The Next Generation or the NCC-1701-D, so I'd never heard that story. Thanks for sharing!

I've always wondered about that too.

Maybe the reasoning is that if there is a shield failure no matter how deep you "bury" the command center it wouldn't make any difference as beam weapons could easily penetrate to any depth on a starship.
If that were true, I would think the broadside exchanges between the Enterprise and the Reliant in The Wrath of Khan would have done a lot more damage to those ships. Of course, that's Federation technology; alien beam weapons could have considerably more power, in which case you'd be right--the bridge wouldn't be safe regardless of where they put it. To be honest, that's something I hadn't considered, so thanks for expanding my imagination!
 

·
Oxidation Genius
Joined
·
31,238 Posts
I don't recall the source, but I remember reading years ago that the nacelles were set away from the ship to protect the crew from radiation. Whichever version is correct (perhaps both?), it works.
.
This one. The original thought was that any mechanism powerful enough to warp the fabric of space would be dangerous to people, so they should be kept at a distance from the ship.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
3,969 Posts
And, it makes the job of replacing worn out units a lot easier.

The same argument can be made for putting the bridge out in the open. Unplug the old bridge module, plug in the new one, job done in a few hours instead of a couple of weeks.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top