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Old February 8 2008, 04:03 AM   #1
Racer_X
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TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

I thought you'd all like to know that I have completed building a model of the TOS bridge using Google's Sketchup program, and will be making it available for download from their website within the next few weeks.



I wanted to create this model because over the last few years, it seemed that the Tech forum was always in the middle of an annual "Which way does the bridge face" discussion, and I thought "Wouldn't it be great if there was an available 3D model that everyone could use when such a discussion occurs?" Now that the model is completed, and that Sketchup is available for both Windows and Mac, most everyone will have the chance to use it as a tool for their own use (Which is why I'm posting here rather than the Art forum).

I based the model primarily off of the McMaster bridge blueprints. Sketchup allows you to import images into the workspace, which gave me the opportunity to "trace" over his blueprints when creating various components. I also based the model off of various images from Matt Jefferies, mostly using soundstage drawings that have been made available on the 'net over the years. And thanks to Mgagen's evidence that the bridge viewer wedge was 40 degrees, I was able to build the wedges using the correct 35.5 degree angles.

In addition to these technical drawings, I used screengrabs that are available from Trekcore for editing various things that were not well documented elsewhere, such as shapes, colors, details, etc. Since many things changed from season to season, I took artistic license on some components. For example, I combined the Season 1 helm panel with the Season 2/3 pop-up viewer.

A number of choices I made were somewhat arbitrary. Two that come to mind are the thicknesses of both the bridge consoles and the turboshaft wall. For the consoles, I decided that at the thinnest part, when looking from the side, the back wall was 12-inches thick. As for the turboshaft wall, I decided to use a 4-inch thick wall. The reason I highlight these decisions is because I thought they might directly impact the placement of the 3D bridge inside a 3D model of the bridge shell. As you'll see later, these decisions were not an issue.

Finally a number of things were modeled using the ol' Mark I Eyeball, so I make no pretenses that this model is an accurate representation of the TOS bridge (For that, you gotta check out this guy's work). In fact, as the name implies, this is a sketch of a 3D model, and I ask that you approach it as such.

The great thing about this endeavor is that it doesn't really matter if it's accurate, because once I upload it to Google's 3D Warehouse, you will be able to download it and modify it as you see fit. If you feel I made an error, you can correct it. If you don't like a texture I used, you can replace it. If you disagree with my choices, you can modify it. Unlike many other items that are posted here at the TrekBBS, I will be giving you an opportunity to improve on my model – which should keep the bitching and moaning to a minimum!

In my next major post, I will provide you with my analysis on exactly where the bridge sits within the saucer dome and which way it faces. Until then, here are some images of the work in progress and the final product. Enjoy!

Racer_X

*******************

My first test:


Semi-completed command console:


Getting ready to make the bridge stations:


A work in progress:


Two bridges:


Inside of turboshaft, with turbolift removed:


Bridge overview closeup:


Stepping out onto the bridge:


Looking to the left:


Looking to the right:


A classic view:
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Old February 8 2008, 04:09 AM   #2
S'kai
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Awesome stuff. Great work, man.
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Old February 8 2008, 04:40 AM   #3
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

That's awesome stuff. I'm jealous again.
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Old February 8 2008, 07:03 AM   #4
Wingsley
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Oh, wow...

Now, all we need are sound FX and music score from the '60's...
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Old February 8 2008, 08:31 AM   #5
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Very cool. Unfortunately, you have the wrong number of large monitors on most of the stations.
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Old February 8 2008, 08:49 AM   #6
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

But those could be software rather than hardware.

That is, Uhura might prefer just one window on her overhead panel on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, when most adventures take place, but Palmer might set her panel for three windows on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. And Sundays would have all the overhead panels combined into one wide window for various racetrack sports.

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Old February 8 2008, 09:10 AM   #7
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Wow, that is very cool! Good programm. Do you take requests?
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Old February 8 2008, 04:48 PM   #8
MGagen
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Fantastic Job, Racer X!

I'm speechless! (Which is a rare thing for me...) I'm also honored that you incorporated my research.

Thanks for doing this and sharing your hard work with the wider community. I can't wait to download it and take it for a spin. (That'll be a 35.5 degree clockwise spin, of course!)

M.
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Old February 8 2008, 06:13 PM   #9
Racer_X
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Thanks for all the kind words, everyone. It was a very fun project to do; I'm just sad I couldn't have finished it sooner. I started almost 2 years ago, but because of real life, including a cross-country move, it's been feast or famine doing work on it. Anyway, if you like the pictures I posted, just wait til I post the model online for download - it's a totally different experience!

If I could embed sound into this, I would. Sadly, you'll have to do that on your own. I just recently purchased the Star Trek Sound Effects CD from Monsters in Motion, and it has a 6-minute loop of bridge sounds. Very cool.

DS9Sega is right, the Weapons and Navigation Sub-Systems stations should only have 1 monitor on them, not 2. Good photos of that side of the bridge are very rare; the only shots I could find via Trekcore were a turbolift shot from "Corbomite Manuever", and the beam-in sequence in "The Tholian Web". When texturing the bridge monitors, I borrowed images from the "Star Trek Captain's Chair" CD, and they had multiple images for those two stations, so I didn't give it a second thought until this morning. I'll see if I can fix that before I post the model.

Wow, MGagen, thanks! It's pretty hard to make someone speechless in this forum. Yes, I still have your bridge analysis image from "050211". Had you not advertised that, I would have assumed everything was 36 degrees. In the grand scheme of things, it's probably not a big deal, but it's nice to know that I got it right.

Tonight I'll try to write up my analysis on which way the bridge faces. For those of you following these discussions over the years, I don't think there will be any surprises, but it'll be fun to see the analysis nevertheless. Until then, here's a teaser:



Racer_X

PS - Sorry, no requests; I'm too busy as it is!
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Old February 8 2008, 07:13 PM   #10
137th Gebirg
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Can this model be made into a self-contained 3D "walkthrough"?
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Old February 8 2008, 09:19 PM   #11
Maurice
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Racer_X said:DS9Sega is right, the Weapons and Navigation Sub-Systems stations should only have 1 monitor on them, not 2. Good photos of that side of the bridge are very rare;...
Actually, the only two stations that should have two monitors are Spock's and Uhura's.

Port side of bridge
Starboard side of bridge
More of the starboard side, including Spock's station.

The size of the monitors varies, though. There are smaller ones, and "widescreen" ones.
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Old February 8 2008, 10:57 PM   #12
Captain Robert April
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

I've gotta learn how to work that program....
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Old February 9 2008, 12:39 AM   #13
Patrickivan
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

I just got it- it's so fun! I'm trying to learn blender, but this is certainly giving me instant gratification with its ease of use! I've already made a wireframe bridge (external).

I am looking forward to seeing more of your stuff, and thanks for telling us about Google Sketch!
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Old February 9 2008, 12:59 AM   #14
Racer_X
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Ok, as I said, I made this model to support discussions regarding the placement of the bridge within the bridge dome. So now I’m going to show you my own analysis of what I’ve come up with. For many of you, what I’ll be showing you will not surprise you, and I’m not uncovering any new discoveries. And before I begin, I want to state for the record that I believe that, in the Star Trek universe, the bridge faces forward.

Now then, on to the analysis. First of all, I imported into Sketchup images of the Sinclair Enterprise drawings (Sheets # 3 & 4) and Matt Jefferies’ Enterprise cutaway, and sized them up so that they showed a 947-ft Enterprise (Give or take a few inches). Then I created the bridge dome with external cylinder, and placed it on the Enterprise drawings to see how it looked (Since the dome was created by tracing over images that were greatly resized, I do not vouch for the exact size of the dome – but I believe it is adequate for the work I’m doing here):



I then worked on deciding the best way the bridge model would fit within the dome. I tested 4 options:

1) The bridge dome and bridge model sitting on the same level, bridge model facing “forward”


2) The bridge dome and bridge model sitting on the same level, bridge model rotated 35.5 degrees


3) The bridge dome sitting higher than the bridge model, bridge model facing “forward”


4) The bridge dome sitting higher than the bridge model, bridge model rotated 35.5 degrees


You may wonder how I determined the bridge dome height for # 3 & 4. Well, I just did it by eye, as the following series demonstrates:



So, based on these tests, I picked #4 as the best solution. Both the bridge dome and bridge model were centered on each other, and the turbolift was pretty much centered on the external cylinder. Here’s what it looks like at eye-level:



And here’s a closeup of the turbolift & external cylinder:



I then placed the bridge model and dome onto the Jefferies Enterprise cutaway, and this is what I ended up with:



As you can see, it looks pretty good. What is especially interesting is that, even though I placed the dome on top of the bridge by eye, when I placed the dome on the cutaway, the bottom of my bridge model matched up pretty well with Jefferies’ drawing. Hmmm, it seems that even back in 1966, Matt Jefferies new what he was doing!

Finally, some views of the bridge model within the dome:



The bottom line is, I believe these images speak for themselves. It is clear to me that, from a physical perspective, the bridge fits within the dome in such a way that the turbolift sits within the rear cylinder. There is no other way it can fit within the dome. And the only way the bridge can face forward is by being placed completely on deck 2, as the following images show:



So there you have it, folks. After two years of modeling work, I’ve proven the obvious! Yay, me.

Racer_X
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Old February 9 2008, 03:01 AM   #15
aridas sofia
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Re: TOS Bridge Modeled in Google SketchUp

Yep. It completely matches everything I came up with as well. I sneaked it down about two feet further into the B/C deck to allow an upper gallery for sensor maintenance up in the dome, but if you stick strictly with the Jefferies cross section, you get just what you got. :thumbsup:
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