Thread: Ringship 1701
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Old June 11 2011, 08:46 PM   #31
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Re: Ringship 1701

TIN_MAN wrote: View Post
If anybody's intrested, MJ played around with this idea. I know you mentioned that Psion, but were you familiar with this specific example (from trekcore)...

The eliptical "ring" might solve your proportion problems?
Hmmm ... I don't think I ever said I was having proportion problems. YARN and I are arguing over how graceful this ship can actually be, but the whole point of my volume studies is to mess around with sizes and shapes and placement before finding something I like and settling on it. I don't usually share that process with others unless someone else is leading the design. In this case, I thought it was an original idea and folks around here might find it fun to throw in ideas.

Cary L. Brown came up with suggestions for using the Golden Ratio, Sojourner and Forbin showed some prior art that shot down the originality of my idea (but also gave me some fun ideas to play with), and others have made good suggestions that I've worked in here and there while I mess with the general shapes like a kid playing with clay. So proportion "problems" haven't even had a chance to exist yet, because this is just a bit of brainstorming and little more, so far.

BUT! Don't think this is a long-winded rebuke, TIN_MAN, because your link illustrates (in addition to showing that Jefferies himself worked on my "original" idea ) that there is a basic flaw to my design. You see, I love that classic shot of the original Enterprise from slightly below and a little to the ship's starboard side that I've tried to emulate in my pictures above. With its perspective-distorted primary hull looming over the secondary hull, and the lights and windows blazing pink against a blue-gray hull ... it's intimidating and intimate and an icon for exploration all at the same time.

Look at the profile of the original ship and you'll see mostly linear shapes suggesting a craft that streaks forward. They nacelle pylons and "neck" are mostly negated by the hulls and nacelles and the whole thing is brilliantly balanced and beautiful.

When I took away the nacelles, I lost a lot of that balance. It still looks kind of cool from that imposing angle I'm so fond of, but, in profile, the pylon (neck, dorsal, whatever) starts to dominate the shape. This makes the whole thing look like a space-shippy rhombus. I tried to solve that problem by making the secondary hull longer, but that introduces new problems, like making the single pylon/keel too aggressively sloped.

When i looked at Matt Jefferies' approach (the link didn't work for me, but I found the picture by going to TrekCore's section for Matt's sketches, then to page seven and clicked on the first picture in the upper left of the page), it was immediately clear that Jefferies also had this problem and eliminated it by putting the saucer on a boom that stretched straight back instead of angled back and down.

I like the ring-ship idea. I don't want to change to an ellipse or rounded box shape because part of my vision included coils that would, when animated, spin around the inside of the ring, barreling along like freight trains carrying charged plasma coils and giving a mechanical analogue to the spinning/flashing lights in the nacelle domes of the original.

It's becoming apparent to me that I have to abandon the central keel concept if this ship will ever look graceful. I'll keep everyone posted.
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