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Old April 18 2013, 04:16 PM   #92
Lenny Nurdbol
Lieutenant Commander
Location: New Jersey, with the Jersey Devil...
Re: Franz Joseph Blueprints Revisited

Maybe this thread should be renamed "Let's Bash Franz Joseph."
I just came off of a "Let's Bash James Dixon" one.

Funny how first generation Treknical fans and fandom gets the finger around here.

Dare criticize someone like Michael "4747 Anime" Okuda and that's heresy.

I've studied the FJ blueprints and virtually everything that FJ did was done for a reason, whether to make the interior sets fit the exterior model or to make the starship realistically liveable as a "city in space." The things which are nitpicked were choices to be made, usually between two contrasts. For instance, Sickbay Is located on Deck 7 according to some episodes--but not according to others. Kirk's quarters is located on Deck 5--according to some episodes but not according to others (notably the earlier ones which give Deck 12, and no matter how you number the decks, up or down, there's no way you can fit Kirk's cabin onto Deck 12!). Other things like a photon torpedo bank in the upper primary hull--were put there by Matt Jeffries in his sketches. All in all the FJ blueprints are a combination of the different miniatures of the Enterprise fused together to make one set of blueprints. This was the best approach he could come up with for a single set of plans. For instance, he has 4 dual impulse engines as opposed to 2: those 4 are seen on aft shots of the model used in the pilot episodes only. If you want to geek-out you can do what 80s fans did and subdivide it up into Constitution, Bonhomme Richard, and Achernar classes/upgrades.

FJ's blueprints were fully authorized and approved of by Gene Roddenberry. They appeared in the Smithsonian, were runaway best-sellers, and appeared in various graphics in the first three Trek movies. They spawned many, many spinoff booklets of general plans. In a word, they Invented Treknical Fandom. A generation of Trek authors alone were also inspired by them and used them in their novels.

Bottom line: I have no problem with them as depicting the Enterprise's final configuration before ST-TMP. I have not seen better deck plans anywhere beyond some rather glittery and overly colorful "fanboy" works which tend to rely too much on high resolution graphics, fonts, and colors than logically form a working and plausible interior layout that's not only consistent with TOS episodes but with functionality. There's no reason to reject them unless you're a revisionist who insists on "reverse engineering" say 1701-D into 1701 or NX-01 into 1701. Considering the changes in technology between eras, that route is best not taken. IMHO, FJ's prints are definitive, so that's a moot point.
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