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Old September 16 2013, 04:42 PM   #220
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Location: The fine line between continuity and fanwank.
Re: Scaling the Excelsior Filming Model

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
I have to bring up a question: What is the external structure of the neck for?
According to those model blueprints I linked upthread, when the model was built the little things in the recesses were intended to be weapons, but it was later decided (for TUC) they were tractor beam emitters. In "Generations" it looks like a workbee is flying away from the port one on the B, but there's no logical hatch there where it could dock. (However, an airlock would be logical there. It just doesn't fit the detail.)

I've always supposed them to be potential "megaphaser" emplacements to match the Reliant's roll bar units. In my thinking, they could draw power right from the warp engines, but it's very likely that on most ships of the class they were not used, since we never once see them fired. So on most ships, it was probably just an extra place where external-facing hardware could be mounted.

The grills themselves, I don't think we've ever had a logical explanation for. It's worth noting they also appear in lesser form at the base of the "humpback."

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
Compared to the other starship designs it's rather unusual. The Excelsior design apparently has not only "space-energy/matter sinks" around the warp nacelles (like Enterprise and Reliant) but also covering the entire neck.

I could believe that the objects we see in the neck are the "space-energy field attraction sensors" (usually around the navigational deflector of the TMP Enterprise) and the entire outer neck actually consists of these sinks.

The neck could just mostly be the storage space for deuterium to either fuel the impulse engines above or the M/AM reaction further to the stern.
An intriguing notion. I'm still not sold on having the neck be tankage - but the idea of some combination of flow sensors and matter intakes (where what I'd previously supposed to be megaphasers was) is rather appealing.

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
If you look at the Sternbach option we might be looking at the reaction point between the matter reactants in the neck and the antimatter pods in the humpback. Of course we'd still have a horizontal intermix shaft.

Then what's that vertical segment we saw in ST III? Possibly a shaft leading to the bottom, powering the transwarp components of the Excelsior in ST III and in the chasm (and Scotty is just leaving this section with the vital transwarp circuits concealed in his pockets).
That was indeed was I was kind of thinking with the Sternbach option, although in this version I think I was thinking the reactor would be in the pod, and the pod would provide easy access to 3 of 4 sides of it for service.

blssdwlf wrote: View Post
I guess the leads would be on a different deck of engineering not portrayed by the voyager filming sets. Just trying to line up the differences.
Well, you make a great point - engineering doesn't have to be where the PTCs lead off. That means engineering could actually be higher up in the neck somewhere, maybe the actual mid-point if it's a TNG-style core to better fit that paradigm. Then the PTC could go vertically down a couple decks before going aft horizontally.

Workbee wrote: View Post
Okay, this isn't based on anything, but I like the idea of a TNG warp core for the Excelsior, seeing as how the warp nacelles share more design elements with the Enterprise D. And in my private continuity, transwarp WAS a success, and became integrated as the new standard in the TNG era.
See, that was along the lines of my thinking, but narratively I was trying to have it both ways: transwarp was a success in the sense that it allowed warp drive to be reinvented, but the actual goal of transwarp (the breaking of the transwarp barrier) was never achieved. It's my way of sidestepping "Threshold."

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
Not necessarily that "private". I just went over my TNG materials and back in the late 1980's there was a fanzine that somehow had gotten access to genuine Art Department materials, including sketches of Andrew Probert etc.

Sometimes these looked like a copy of a copy of a copy but there are apparently genuine screen schematics from the bridge (e.g. Picard's command chair schematics) and one of those shows the Enterprise-D on a schematic that reads "transwarp". It's very reminiscent of the transwarp schematics from Shane Johnson's Scott's Guide to the (TMP) Enterprise from ST IV.
Fascinating... it'd be interesting to see that. I seem to remember reading that Mike Okuda told Shane Johnson that he could modify his TVH graphics to include the word transwarp because at the time there was no reason to think transwarp wasn't successful... but at some point during TNG pre-production it was decided to drop the term. I presume it was because it was deemed confusing and not directly linear from TOS. Also, Roddenberry may have disliked that it came from movies he didn't wholly approve of.

137th Gebirg wrote: View Post
I'm definitely in favor of option 1, with my own personal bias for a dual core, based on the crystal layout.
At the moment, I'm 50/50 on the dual core notion. The one reason why I'm not totally sold is that originally she had the great big crystal before the dual ones. I suppose you could make the argument that one big fancy warp core got replaced with two, less fancy ones...

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
Speaking of Option 1, why is it that the shaft has to be straight? According to Option 1, the antimatter pods would be just right above the navigational deflector, correct?
Correct - right near the bow of the secondary hull, really.

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
Do we have some unwritten trek-no-logical law that says "structures running through angled necks of starships always have to be vertical"?

Why don't we have an angled shaft (running through the neck) that could conveniently lead past the nav deflector and down to the antimmater pods at the bottom of the engineering hull.

As a matter of fact, we do have a hatch structure there (the cover plate for the mounting rod) that could just be the loading hatch for the antimatter pods.
Well, I think the one thing working against it is precedent. Plus we do know we have some sort of horizontal segment there somewhere. Although, for the Sternbach option, I was thinking the same thing about the mounting rod hatch.

Honestly, at the moment I'm leaning towards Option One, with a horizontal core and a slightly more complicated than necessary PTC arrangement. I'll play with it a bit this evening.
"If you can't take a little bloody nose, maybe you ought to go back home and crawl under your bed. It's not safe out here. It's wondrous, with treasures to satiate desires both subtle and gross; but it's not for the timid." - Q
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