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Old August 24 2011, 05:02 AM   #449
Cary L. Brown
Rear Admiral
Location: Austin, Texas
Re: TOS Enterprise WIP

aridas sofia wrote: View Post
Cary L. Brown wrote: View Post
...what I said was only that those who treat that number as some sort of "holy article of faith" are being a bit silly, not that it's silly to prefer it. Nor was I necessarily attributing that to you... quite the contrary, in fact. As you said, you did make it quite clear that you don't have a "religious level of ferver" about this... and my comment was thus clearly not directed towards you.

There are a few people who actually get ANGRY if you question the "holy 947'" however... on the same level as if you'd suggested re-editing the entire TOS series to use the JJ-Prise instead of the TOS ship, as if a small shift in scale (which, I would argue, helps things match up better) is somehow on the same level as a total eradication of the original series design.

THOSE people are... yes, silly. I'd hope you'd agree.
I must admit to not really agreeing (though you weren't asking me). I just don't get all the discussion and disagreement over the size/scale of the original ship. It seems to stem for the most part from "wishful thinking" -- that somehow, someway, if we ignore what Jefferies told us, if we ignore the scale indicated on the two views of the ship given in "Day of the Dove", if we insist that a forced perspective (or otherwise distorted for purposes of fitting a camera) hangar deck miniature should be taken as the intended shape of that deck (even though it doesn't match the space allocated on either of Jefferies' cross sections)... if we do ALL these things and more, we can somehow get that big hangar deck shown in TAS. I'm not saying that this is why any particular person advocates dumping what was established onscreen, just that it seems to be a recurring theme in these discussions. "That hangar deck just isn't big enough for four shuttlecraft". And yet, it is. A 947' ship fits the bridge as filmed, and the hangar as it is meant to be (and as was drawn by Jefferies in the Phase II cross section).

We know what the designer intended. We know the shuttlecraft fit. We know the bridge fits. We know the size indicated on a scale bar onscreen. I just don't see the ongoing problem.

The only thing that I can see that leads you to a bigger ship is if we insist all the decks are as tall as those sets indicate. And yet Jefferies shows us that isn't the case. He has decks of varying heights, and decks that vary in height even on the same level. So, even here the only problem exists if we insist the ship to be something other than what we are told it is. Which is sort of like insisting it is over 1000' long when we are told it is 947'.

Except, of course, that that's not true. Deck placements are established by window positions, as seen on-screen. Deck heights and room configurations are indicated by on-screen scenes. Exterior shape is indicated by on-screen scenes.

The 947' number is never indicated at all, on-screen. It can only, and only just BARELY, be "derived" from a single illustration which does NOT list the length at all, but only shows a small scale-bar, and which was no more intended to be able to be read on-screen than the "insurance remaining" indicator on the TNG sickbay displays, or the "giant rubber ducks" on the TNG engineering displays, were intended to be studied in detail.

The fact remains that you simply cannot match EVERYTHING we've been given up. In your case, you tend to say that "sets can be smaller than we saw on-screen," so you can fit the remaining details.

And that's just fine... it's a fair approach, but it's a COMPROMISE. It is in violation of what is seen on-screen. You do have to acknowledge that, don't you?

To me, I just think that the sets... which were seen in every single episode, week after week, for three seasons, are far more relevant to "canon" than a single illustration which was never really even visible on-screen in any degree of detail, which was only seen for a brief few moments, and which shows a ship which is only marginally similar to the ship we actually see on-screen for every one of the 79 episodes of the series.

We're all forced to choose which bits we'll keep, and which we'll allow to "bend" a little bit. My approach is to say that what we see on-screen is what matters, far more than anything else, overall. Yours is to choose the 947' and to try your best to make things fit into that. BOTH APPROACHES ARE COMPROMISES, and neither is 100% in agreement with every bit of information out there.

Because some of that information is simply contradictory... it is literally impossible to get a perfect, 100% match-up.

Is the primary hull of the 1701 eleven decks thick (per the writer's guide) or is it eight decks thick (per MJ's diagrams)? Is there any undercut on the primary hull underside (as per the 11' and 3' models) or is that surface flat (per MJ's diagrams)? Where are the phasers? What is the shape of the ship overall? What is the window configuration?

How do you reconcile 100% of everything seen? The answer is... you can't. It's simply not possible.

Of course, it's far easier with Star Trek than it is for, say, Star Wars... just try fitting the Millennium Falcon's interior sets into the exterior (and which exterior? The one seen in the first film? The one seen in the Hoth hangar? The miniature from the first film, or one of those from the second and third films?). Or try figuring out where, on the Star Destroyer, that bridge really is, just for starters.

In my case, I discovered that by increasing the size of the ship just very slightly, I could get virtually everything to work out without even needing "tweaks."

I even discovered that I could put the standard "on-set corridor arc" onto more than half of my primary hull decks... six out of eleven of them (or rather, six out of ten... my deck 11 is basically a "crawl-space"). If it was at 947, I could only put this corridor arc onto four decks, and one of them would have no useable rooms on the outer side of that ring...

I barely "tweaked" the window locations... less than six inches up or down in most cases, from what was indicated on the various sets of prints I was using as a reference. And they ended up lining up nearly perfectly, with set distances from floor to window C/L.

At NO POINT did I ever try to match the "TAS" shuttle bay... my own shuttle bay is situated entirely behind the engine pylons, and I've been able to nearly perfectly replicate the on-screen image of the hanger bay in Maya using a virtual "wide-angle-lens." This would not have been possible had the ship been a bit smaller, though... I'd have had to compromise a lot more.

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy your own drawing of the Enterprise "guts," though I find the extensive terraced "stair-stepping" and the huge variety of different craft stuffed in there to be far too different than what was seen on-screen for me to "accept" it as the "correct" presentation. That's the fun thing... trying to make everything fit in a way which works with the image each of us carries around in our head, isn't it?

For me, I just know that the Enterprise isn't "really" 947' long. I know it's longer, but not dramatically so... 1067', in fact.

Meanwhile, you know that it's exactly 947' long, and that the sets we saw on-screen aren't "really" as big as we see.

Since the ship doesn't actually exist... it's hard to say which one is the "right" answer, now, isn't it?
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