Re: USS Grandeur - One... More... Time!
Could have much smaller 'hatches', with each one actually being attached to the pod under it. Keeps the surface flush (or close to it) without needing a separate door to open for them to get out. Then have a door (or another pod with the same shell on top) that closes behind it to fill in the armor gap left from the departed pod.
"There is no reason why good cannot triumph as often as evil. The triumph of anything is a matter of organization. If there are such things as angels, I hope that they are organized along the lines of the Maffia." - Winston Niles Rumfoord.