Excelsior Technical Manual - Revived!

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by Praetor, Mar 23, 2009.

  1. Mark_Nguyen

    Mark_Nguyen Commodore Commodore

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    I re-read this stuff after reading Praetor's sequel thread about the Excelsior size HERE. A shame we weren't able to see more after this, but I'm happy we got what we did.

    You know what though? I think the "history book" of the Excelsior class could be finalized and published as exactly that - a biographical recount of the ship and her sisters, through the major points of her development and active service. It's basically written that way anyway, albeit with a number of "personal" perspectives that don't really fit into a tech manual.

    The best part is that re-doing this as a history book would be relatively simple, as most of the work is already done. I would present most of the text as-is, but add the context that it's actually a work of historical research, much like pretty much any history text you've ever read. I've recently read a couple books about stuff like the building of the RMS Titanic, or about the experiences of various WWII fighter pilots. The only real thing separating books like that with what Praetor has written is the illustration of the more factual points with quotes or "interviews" with the people involved.

    For example, "excerpts" of interviews with the "author" and various people involved could be used to provide a more personal look at the development of the ship. What did Admiral Morrow think about the justification of the cost of the Excelsior, in his own words? What did Dr. Wazzisname say about the promise of transwarp drive in his speech at the Starfleet Propulsion Labs fall mixer? And just what did the very "vocal" opponent of transwarp, Montgomery Scott, say to the supporters? Heck, you could even include now-declassified excerpts from officers or personal logs of various people involved, thus finally giving a reason for having those things in the first place. :P

    Here's what I dreamed up over lunch today:

    Such were my thoughts in re-reading this very cool thread. :) Thanks Praetor for writing what you have. I hope you find the time to do more someday, on this or any other ship. :)

    Mark
     
  2. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Zombie thread!

    Sir, you and I should talk. This fella's definitely on the backburner, but I have been wanting to revisit it. In fact, that's part of the purpose of the other thread, to lay the footwork.
     
  3. SicOne

    SicOne Commodore Commodore

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    Glad to see the Excelsior TM thread resurrected! :)
     
  4. Tallguy

    Tallguy Commodore Commodore

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    I'm just amazed that you're still alive! :)
     
  5. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    "I've been dead before." :rommie:

    Thanks guys. :)
     
  6. Nob Akimoto

    Nob Akimoto Captain Captain

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    I know I'm a little late to the party (I have an alibi, I wasn't on the board for a long time!) but I did read through your posts and I enjoyed them.

    If I had a minor, minor quibble is that "Tokogawa" isn't really a Japanese surname (the syllabic emphasises make for an awkward name with the To and Ko) but easily fixed by swapping the o for a u.
     
  7. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Thanks! I borrowed that name from another story about Excelsior. I'm not super married to it. I didn't know it was a fake. So Tokugawa would be acceptable then?

    At some point in the near future, I'll have some revisions to post.
     
  8. Lego Thrawn

    Lego Thrawn Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    I'm a bit late to the game, but this is an awesome thread, and awesome work!
     
  9. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Thanks very much. :)
     
  10. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    I remember this old thread! IIRC, I think there was also a Constellation Tech Manual in the same vein being worked on a while back too. These things were extremely detailed and very comprehensive in their documentation of details, taking much of the source information from the original filming miniatures. I miss the days of the old fan-made tech manuals. I truly hope that these things can find new steam once again. :)
     
  11. The_Beef

    The_Beef Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Hey Praetor, if you intend to work on this any more since the subject has been resurrected, I had a thought while I was re-reading. I noticed that you discussed the possibility that the Ambassador is what really made the technology behind "transwarp" work, even if the end result was only an increase in speed and the adaptation of the modified warp scale, rather than actual instantaneous travel. I don't think you mentioned that at all though in the actual chapter that discussed the Ambassador-class. If you're sticking to that idea, it would give some nice meat to that section and maybe make the Ambassador seem like a bit less of a lackluster design. It would also give a nice resolution to the transwarp story that dominates the opening chapters.
     
  12. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Hm, good idea. Among the things I want to do is downplay the Ambassador as a failure (and downplay talking about her a tad in general.) In hindsight, I think it'll come down to simple math - depending how the scaling wars work out, it would probably be easier to build two Excelsiors for one Ambassador.
     
  13. The_Beef

    The_Beef Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Makes sense. I think there's ample evidence that the Federation grew significantly in the years prior to TNG. Just look at how many start-up colonies and outposts the Enterprise visited over the course of the show. Starfleet must have been stretched a bit thin and would have been more concerned with getting as much use possible out of existing designs.

    Another thing worth considering is the advent of replicator technology. Starfleet in the TOS-era seemed much more concerned with securing resources than in the TNG-era. Replication must have made some parts of starship production cheaper and easier, even if some components couldn't be replicated. Maybe replicators made their appearance sometime between the Ambassador and Galaxy classes, and that's part of why we see Starfleet experimenting with bigger ships and a much wider range of designs?
     
  14. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Good point. I think heretofore I've mostly assumed that it was related to provisions that a ship would have to carry for the crew; even in a closed system, without replicators I think there would be some loss, and certain things that a ship just couldn't manufacture, i.e. the turkey in "Charlie X."

    I've privately assumed that a leap in synthesizer technology took place sometime during Kirk's era, with the possibility of replicator introduction in the 2290s or so given the appearance of something that appeared to be one in Kirk's quarters in TUC, Kitchen notwithstanding. It's still possible that true proper industrial replicators able to make ship-sized components didn't come about until the era in which the Ambassador was built - and it actually almost works in Excelsior's favor; if Excelsior is smaller, then her smaller parts would probably be simpler to replicate than those of an Ambassador. Gradually, the technology would catch up in time to make a big difference for the Galaxy.
     
  15. The_Beef

    The_Beef Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I'm actually kicking around a theory about how replicator technology, as opposed to earlier food synthesizers and protein re-sequencers, revolutionized Starfleet. I'm picturing it as something that revolutionized logistics, but also put tremendous strain on the fleet to upgrade power distribution and computer systems onboard starships. I'm trying to tie it into some overall ideas about how Starfleet was able to rely on the Miranda and Excelsior classes for so long, which I'll get into more when I actually post the thing.
     
  16. Nob Akimoto

    Nob Akimoto Captain Captain

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    We know that there's something very specific about "industrial replicators" that do things that ordinary replicators evidently can't. I wonder if these work at a higher resolution (quantum rather than molecular?) than food replicators to reduce small errors in the resultant item.
     
  17. Avro Arrow

    Avro Arrow Commodore Commodore

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    ^ Huh, I guess I just always assumed that ordinary replicators are small, and can make a nice pair of candlesticks or a cup of tea, but they're too small to really form anything large. Industrial replicators would be freakin' huge, and you would use them to replicate bulldozers or prefabricated buildings or 1000 tonnes of nano-carbon infused aluminum-matrix composite. Not a matter of resolution; just a matter of scale. YMMV.
     
  18. Herkimer Jitty

    Herkimer Jitty Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yeah, I've figured size was always the major difference.

    I remember something about industrial replicators being used to make the fake "idyllic environment" of Risa viable - are the replicators used to somehow alter the terrain (IE, replicate millions of tons of sand to replace eroding coastlines? other, more impressive feats of geoengineering), or for more mundane, usual purposes? Given the context, I would hazard a guess at the former, which could should some light on the capabilities of industrial units.

    I'd figure they're Kind Of A Big Deal, at any rate. Two industrial replicators were apparently enough to cover most of Bajor's rebuilding.
     
  19. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Then again, the Maquis had food replicators ("Preemptive Strike"), but supposedly couldn't use them to replicate photon torpedo warheads ("Tribunal") which were small enough to fit in packing crates the size of portable freezer boxes... Supposedly, their subsequent theft of industrial replicators ("For the Uniform") was motivated by a quest for quality rather than quantity, then.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  20. Nob Akimoto

    Nob Akimoto Captain Captain

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    The way "industrial replicator" seemed to be used as well as things like the replicator kiosk in TNG seemed to imply there was a distinct type of replicator used to create long-term durable goods or technical items over say stuff that could be discarded relatively swiftly. Presumably such things have rather high power and maybe matter feed requirements that go beyond what ordinary replicators are capable of providing.