There's been some delay in posting updates. Basically my progress hasn't been all smooth. SOmetimes rendering something in 3D doesn't quite translate from how I initially envisioned it. My first saucer attempt wasn't wholly to my liking so I redid it. The engineering section (connecting the saucer to the warp nacelle syppport pylons was next on not being satisfactory until three tries later. Then the dorsal to the support hull wasn't right until the third try.
The support hull has given me the most trouble. I just couldn't get the shape just right. I obviously didn't want to just do a version of the familiar Connie
support hull. A large part of this design exercise is to fashion something that suggests what comes later. I want the Constitution
-class to look both evolutionary and revolutionary to reflect something of where design has evolved from as well as reflect the obvious influence of significant technological advancement---essentially the influence of Daystrom's duotronic computer advancement that revolutionizes so much of starship design. For example I would also posit that the transporter (teleportation) just isn't feasible for human transport until the advent of Daystrom's much faster systems.
Another challenge has been the forward part of the suport hull where the navigational deflector is located. On the Enterprise
we have a huge parabolic antenna design, but this isn't what MJ initially envisioned. His original idea was apparently a dome like affair on the front of the support hull, but somewhere along the way someone had other ideas. So picking up on what I did on my star clipper design I'm trying to revisit MJ's original idea. The problem is in making it look aestheicaly pleasing. An actual half shpere is not the way to go as it looks like the overlarge mass just hanging on the front end of the support hull. My solution has been to make the nav-dome more shallow and a bit smaller in diameter. The shape of the support hull itself is also something I've wrestled with and I've come to realize that it needs more visual texture, more detail to overcome its basically simple shape.