So, back from the honeymoon and all, thanks for the congratulations Kaiser and Blip!
I decided to try to continue with the Bowman a bit. I really want to get to the secondary hull soon, but decided to ease back into this with something a bit simpler and not as vital to the look.
Since the last thing I added was the gangway hatch, I figured I'd start there. I wanted to explore how the ship would actually dock at a space station or dry dock using this hatch. The way I saw it, the doors that you can see are actually only outer doors, since they didn't make much sense from an airlock point of view. So I decided to design a docking port from scratch, based partly on the airlock from the travel pod from the first two movies, but squared off to fit more snugly in the hatch.
I started off by building the gangway that would extend from a dry dock or space station to the ship, ending in an airlock that would fit into the gangway hatch on the saucer:
Then used that to build the actual docking port inside the hatch itself. You can see here the pockets for the doors on the gangway to be retracted into, and the sockets for the docking latches to link with.
Since I was able to do both parts, I decided I might as well do a simple shot of it actually docked, so here that is:
Of course, each of these parts will only be used in shots where the ship is either just off docking, or actually docked, but I figured I'd like to do a dry dock shot anyway when I get more done, so this is a good start I think. I'm also planning on using the same docking system for any other ships I might build in the same style, so I built the actual interior docking port to be interchangeable into any other model.
Please let me know what you think, and if there's anything I can do to improve on this. Hopefully I should be able to get more done soon, not sure what or when exactly, but I'll be working on it whenever I can.