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Star Trek - Original Series The one that started it all...

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Old September 10 2013, 01:20 AM   #31
Dukhat
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
That's not the point. You wrote "Solely from information from TOS, we know: ... (Constitution Class)"

I don't know how you think you/we "know" that some of the starships you listed belong to the "Constitution Class".

All I do know "solely from information from TOS" is that the TOS Enterprise belongs to the "U.S.S. Enterprise Starship Class" according to the bridge plaque.
Ok, fine. So there are eight known classes of ship like the Enterprise that were shown on screen, all possibly belonging to the "starship class" of vessels. Is that better?
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Old September 10 2013, 02:01 AM   #32
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

I'm reminded of the impression I constantly received when I first watched TOS - namely, that the Enterprise type was the biggest and best thing Starfleet had, and moreover, the only real "Starship" design. Sure there were other types of ships, but they were just spaceships, not fancy Starships.

I'm not convinced this was intentional, mind you, as much as a combined result of budget limitations not showing other ship classes, and the effort to make Starships (and by extension, the Captain and crew of said ships) something special. Still, it would be somewhat similar to the Hornblower model which we know was somewhat referenced for TOS.

Still, does anyone know more about the Royal Navy during the time in which Hornblower is set, that we might fight useful in our extrapolation?
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Old September 10 2013, 04:13 AM   #33
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Praetor wrote: View Post
I'm reminded of the impression I constantly received when I first watched TOS - namely, that the Enterprise type was the biggest and best thing Starfleet had, and moreover, the only real "Starship" design. Sure there were other types of ships, but they were just spaceships, not fancy Starships.
I dunno... the one episode where they really played up the starship / spaceship difference was "Bread and Circuses", and there they were comparing Enterprise to the non-Starfleet merchant vessel SS Beagle. So while the Enterprise type might have indeed been the cream of the crop at the time, I don't think they were ever intended to be the only real starship design. Any front-line Starfleet vessel probably has the right to be called a "starship".

(I know they only ever showed starships of the same type as Enterprise, but... budget. )

CrazyMatt wrote: View Post
Actually, that's right! Republic belongs on the list too!

Now, to answer your question:

From "Obsession"

KIRK: Ensign Garrovick is a ship-command decision. You're straying out of your field, Doctor.
MCCOY: Am I? I was speaking of Lieutenant James T. Kirk of the starship Farragut.

From "The Immunity Syndrome"

SPOCK: Doctor, even I, a half-Vulcan, could hear the death scream of four hundred Vulcan minds crying out over the distance between us.
MCCOY: Not even a Vulcan could feel a starship die.

From "Court Martial"

COMPUTER: Ship nomenclature. Specify.
KIRK: United Starship Republic, number 1371.
Which is why I don't personally think that any ship referred to as a starship automatically means she's the same class as Enterprise. Sorry. YMMV, of course.

Enterprise's commissioning plaque notwithstanding, of course. Since that was there from the earliest days of the series, I think that's just one of the things that hadn't really been ironed out yet (like Earth vs. Federation ship), and at best refers to "Starship Class" the same way you might refer to a "destroyer class" vessel IRL, but then within the destroyer classification, you'd have, say, St. Laurent or Restigouche class ships.
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Old September 10 2013, 04:36 AM   #34
J.T.B.
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Praetor wrote: View Post
I'm reminded of the impression I constantly received when I first watched TOS - namely, that the Enterprise type was the biggest and best thing Starfleet had, and moreover, the only real "Starship" design. Sure there were other types of ships, but they were just spaceships, not fancy Starships.

I'm not convinced this was intentional, mind you, as much as a combined result of budget limitations not showing other ship classes, and the effort to make Starships (and by extension, the Captain and crew of said ships) something special. Still, it would be somewhat similar to the Hornblower model which we know was somewhat referenced for TOS.

Still, does anyone know more about the Royal Navy during the time in which Hornblower is set, that we might fight useful in our extrapolation?
It was built around having strong fleets in strategic locations, so the biggest, strongest ships spent most of their time on their stations. The vessels that operated independently and undertook the kind of missions that make for interesting stories were usually the smallest types.
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Old September 10 2013, 08:49 AM   #35
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Praetor wrote: View Post
I'm reminded of the impression I constantly received when I first watched TOS - namely, that the Enterprise type was the biggest and best thing Starfleet had ...
I never got that impression, more the Enterprise was just one of many. But I've alway thought of Starfleet as having many thousands of starships.

J.T.B. wrote: View Post
The vessels that operated independently and undertook the kind of missions that make for interesting stories were usually the smallest types.
Or mid-sized, if you think about it, the Enterprise under Kirk undertook a fair share of little "shit jobs" that the pride of the fleet likely wouldn't have. Transporting princesses to their wedding, doing med exams on isolate archaeologists, making deliveries to penal colonies, etc..

CrazyMatt wrote: View Post
I think a lot of the confusion is that what we would now consider Starfleet in the TOS era really wasn't fleshed out until the second season. Or the UFP, for that matter.
But the thing is we're not just dealing with a small number of references, Earth ships, Earth bases, Earth outposts. Even after the UFP was brought into existence. So they can't just be casually dismissed.

In the first season of TNG there was still mention of Earth colonists.

Avro Arrow wrote: View Post
^ "Journey to Babel" certainly made the TOS Federation look similar to the UN, since they sent Ambassadors to Babel to decide on the Coridan issue. If it was supposed to be a federal government, you think they would have just handled that in the halls of government.
In the (non-canon) comic books and Star Trek Online, the Federation sends ambassador to Federation members. After retiring, Picard is the ambassador to Vulcan.

In TAS's Yesteryear, Federation members exchange ambassadors with each other.

Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
Praetor wrote: View Post
Ah yes... forgot in particular the Tellarite one. Thanks!
But ship doesn't equal a naval vessel ...
True, but it doesn't exclude the possibility. The Enterprise is called a Earth ship and is a naval vessel.

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Old September 10 2013, 11:34 AM   #36
Robert Comsol
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

@ Dukhat

Thank you! And also thanks for compiling that list on a short notice.
I guess we have to wonder whether the hull lettering is really useful for spotting numbers from the distance as the similar kind of numbering on the starship status chart makes it rather difficult to tell "6" and "8" apart.

@ Praetor

During Nelson's/Hornblower's era of the Royal Navy the sailing ships were mostly distinguished by the number of guns they carried. A "first-rate" like HMS Victory or the fictional HMS Defiant (wall painting in "In a Mirror, Darkly") would carry 104 guns, a second-rate 90-98 guns and a third-rate 64-80 guns.

All these ships had in common that they were "ships-of-the-line", i.e. they were considered powerful enough to engage the enemy fleet in the traditional parallel lining and broadside exchange (Nelson broke this rule and therefore won at Trafalgar in 1805)

@ Avro Arrow

Here is another reference to add to the list, i.e. "Starship Archon" 100 years prior to TOS.

And Pike's injury occurred on a cadet vessel, "old J-class starship".

I'm very confident that the Matt Jefferies explanation on this TOS pre-production sketch, i.e. Enterprise belongs to the 17th Federation "cruiser" design series, reflects the original TOS pre-production intentions that had the Enterprise be a member of the "Cruiser Class" (The Making of Star Trek). For the series they settled for "Starship Class" and this would make the Archon a member of an older "starship" design series.

By 23rd Century standards - this was discussed in the Oberth Class-missing-link Tech thread - the Archon would, of course, no longer qualify as a starship by contemporary standards ("old J-class starship").
If we want to apply the Hornblower analogy this makes perfect sense, because a ship of the Royal Navy that was considered a "first-rate" by 1600 had been downgraded to a "third-rate" by 1700.

I agree that "Starship Class" (or "Destroyer Class") tells us little.
Of course the first digits on the hull tell us more (e.g. 17th design) and then we had these alphabetic classifications like the aforementioned "J-class" which either is just a letter or a short form of "Jefferson Class" or something like that.

But again, according to "continuity guru" Bob Justman (in The Making of Star Trek) they were talking about the 12 ships of the "Enterprise Starship Class".

And what does the bridge dedication plaque of 17-01 say? "U.S.S. Enterprise Starship Class"

I fail to understand why the class ship's dedication plaque has to read "U.S.S. Enterprise Enterprise Starship Class".

Bob
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Old September 10 2013, 05:01 PM   #37
Praetor
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Yeah, I think you guys have proven my youthful impressions are a dead-end alley as far as extrapolation are concerned.
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Old September 10 2013, 10:50 PM   #38
Darkwing
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

So, in the Napoleonic War era of Hornblower, Ships of the Line Of Battle (later abbreviated to "Battleships") were 1st, 2nd, or 3rd rate. Frigates were 4th or 5th rates, Sloops, Snows (rhymes with cows, not crows), Barks, Brigs, and all the other non-SHIP vessels were 6th rate. Frigates were the biggest ships to lie outside the Line, and the most versatile. Battleships went to a station, then stayed there for a deployment, as part of a group. Frigates were assigned in groups and individually. Frigates sent on an independent deployment, or cruise, became known as Cruisers.
So Kirk's Enterprise was definitely NOT the biggest thing Starfleet had. it was the biggest and best ship sailing solo on independent operations. But bigger, better, more capable battleships (with tighter leashes), bigger, better, more capable research ships (with watchdogs), and other types should also exist.
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Old September 10 2013, 11:07 PM   #39
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Not having HD, and 16xx numbers being used so long, I prefer to keep Intrepid as 1631, Excalibur as 1664, etc. It also fits my favored theory melding the hull numbers and sources. As Baton Rouge starships refit to Connie specs, 16xx works, with the FJ numbers being the intended replacements. So when 1664 Excalibur gets scrapped after the M5 incident, 1705 gets built.
But if we go with 18xx, then FJTM is just wrong, and Connies are potentially spread out from 1700 to 1897. It also means Reliant inherited Excalibur's hull number, and that different designs are even more interspersed than previously thought.
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Old September 11 2013, 12:29 AM   #40
Shawnster
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
During Nelson's/Hornblower's era of the Royal Navy the sailing ships were mostly distinguished by the number of guns they carried. A "first-rate" like HMS Victory or the fictional HMS Defiant (wall painting in "In a Mirror, Darkly") would carry 104 guns, a second-rate 90-98 guns and a third-rate 64-80 guns.

All these ships had in common that they were "ships-of-the-line", i.e. they were considered powerful enough to engage the enemy fleet in the traditional parallel lining and broadside exchange (Nelson broke this rule and therefore won at Trafalgar in 1805)
Avro Arrow wrote: View Post
Which is why I don't personally think that any ship referred to as a starship automatically means she's the same class as Enterprise. Sorry. YMMV, of course.

Enterprise's commissioning plaque notwithstanding, of course. Since that was there from the earliest days of the series, I think that's just one of the things that hadn't really been ironed out yet (like Earth vs. Federation ship), and at best refers to "Starship Class" the same way you might refer to a "destroyer class" vessel IRL, but then within the destroyer classification, you'd have, say, St. Laurent or Restigouche class ships.
Could this be a possible rationalization of starship vs. Starship Class? The Royal Navy had all kinds of ships in the 18th and 19th centuries; however, only a select few were "Ships of the Line." Those were special ships had their own distinction and, as Robert describes, different ratings.

So TOS has spaceships and starships; however, Starships as in the Starship Class are a distinct breed. They are the 23rd century equivalent of a Ship of the Line. There are only 12 like Enterprise in the fleet because they are so rare and special. Oh, sure, there are other space ships, but they are inferior when compared to the Starship Class.

Just tossing this out there as a possible rationalization.
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Old September 11 2013, 12:56 AM   #41
J.T.B.
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
Why only 12 ships? IIRC the US Navy had 12 aircraft carriers in the 1960's and this was an inspiration.
This got me thinking. This chart may be of interest to some of you; as you can see there were a bit more than twelve carriers in service during TOS's run, though quite a few were ASW or amphibious carriers. And you can also see a number of familiar Starfleet names that were in service at the time.

(click for full size)
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Old September 11 2013, 12:59 AM   #42
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Darkwing wrote: View Post
So Kirk's Enterprise was definitely NOT the biggest thing Starfleet had. it was the biggest and best ship sailing solo on independent operations. But bigger, better, more capable battleships (with tighter leashes), bigger, better, more capable research ships (with watchdogs), and other types should also exist.
That's the way I see it as well. It was Kirk and the unique gestalt he had with his crew that made the Enterprise the best ship to send to a crisis, not the actual ship itself.
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Old September 11 2013, 03:21 PM   #43
Robert Comsol
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Darkwing wrote: View Post
It also means Reliant inherited Excalibur's hull number, and that different designs are even more interspersed than previously thought.
You are referring to the two digit contact code "64" only?

General question to all: Does it look on your FullHD (!) displays like "1664" or "1864" on the starship status chart from "Court Martial".

The one thing I can't wrap my head around is how Greg Jein was certain it's "1664" and "1697" on the still photo from the original negative he probably had, but mistook "1831" for "1631".

Maybe I take my Blu-ray disc next time to my friend who has a 4K UltraHD Sony projector. Maybe the upsampling provides an answer.

Bob
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Old September 11 2013, 05:15 PM   #44
Praetor
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

Shawnster wrote: View Post
Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
During Nelson's/Hornblower's era of the Royal Navy the sailing ships were mostly distinguished by the number of guns they carried. A "first-rate" like HMS Victory or the fictional HMS Defiant (wall painting in "In a Mirror, Darkly") would carry 104 guns, a second-rate 90-98 guns and a third-rate 64-80 guns.

All these ships had in common that they were "ships-of-the-line", i.e. they were considered powerful enough to engage the enemy fleet in the traditional parallel lining and broadside exchange (Nelson broke this rule and therefore won at Trafalgar in 1805)
Avro Arrow wrote: View Post
Which is why I don't personally think that any ship referred to as a starship automatically means she's the same class as Enterprise. Sorry. YMMV, of course.

Enterprise's commissioning plaque notwithstanding, of course. Since that was there from the earliest days of the series, I think that's just one of the things that hadn't really been ironed out yet (like Earth vs. Federation ship), and at best refers to "Starship Class" the same way you might refer to a "destroyer class" vessel IRL, but then within the destroyer classification, you'd have, say, St. Laurent or Restigouche class ships.
Could this be a possible rationalization of starship vs. Starship Class? The Royal Navy had all kinds of ships in the 18th and 19th centuries; however, only a select few were "Ships of the Line." Those were special ships had their own distinction and, as Robert describes, different ratings.

So TOS has spaceships and starships; however, Starships as in the Starship Class are a distinct breed. They are the 23rd century equivalent of a Ship of the Line. There are only 12 like Enterprise in the fleet because they are so rare and special. Oh, sure, there are other space ships, but they are inferior when compared to the Starship Class.

Just tossing this out there as a possible rationalization.
I think this makes perfect sense. Further, based on the notion of "rate" systems, why can't there be Class I, II, III etc. Starships?

J.T.B. wrote: View Post
Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
Why only 12 ships? IIRC the US Navy had 12 aircraft carriers in the 1960's and this was an inspiration.
This got me thinking. This chart may be of interest to some of you; as you can see there were a bit more than twelve carriers in service during TOS's run, though quite a few were ASW or amphibious carriers. And you can also see a number of familiar Starfleet names that were in service at the time.

(click for full size)
Wow, that's fascinating. Thanks for sharing.

jpv2000 wrote: View Post
Darkwing wrote: View Post
So Kirk's Enterprise was definitely NOT the biggest thing Starfleet had. it was the biggest and best ship sailing solo on independent operations. But bigger, better, more capable battleships (with tighter leashes), bigger, better, more capable research ships (with watchdogs), and other types should also exist.
That's the way I see it as well. It was Kirk and the unique gestalt he had with his crew that made the Enterprise the best ship to send to a crisis, not the actual ship itself.
That works.
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Old September 11 2013, 05:20 PM   #45
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Re: Imagine the TOS Starfleet

I remember my reaction to seeing the Reliant in TWOK and hearing Chekov's log...

'Starship log, stardate 8130.4. Log entry by First Officer Pavel Chekov. Starship Reliant on orbital approach to Ceti Alpha VI, in connection with Project Genesis. We are continuing our search for a lifeless planet to satisfy the requirements of a test site for the Genesis Experiment. So far no success.'

"WHAT'S HE SAYING? THAT'S NOT A STARSHIP!!!!!"

I guess my universe of understanding expanded.
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