Klingon Battle Cruiser

Discussion in 'Star Trek - Original Series' started by ZapBrannigan, Jun 28, 2013.

  1. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

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    The original Klingon battle cruiser is a striking design. If you grew up with it, it's almost a Jungian archetype and certainly a cornerstone of Star Trek iconography. Is it a cobra? An art deco building? A bird? A manta ray? You can project a lot of things onto it.

    Facts I find interesting:

    The design still looked so good that they barely changed it for TMP ten years later. What else can you say that for? Not the Enterprise, not the Batmobile, not Superman's good blue suit. Hollywood updates everything, but they let the Klingon design stand.

    If I remember correctly, AMT built the TOS filming miniature as part of a deal that gave them the rights to the retail kit. And then the kit was made directly from the thing itself, not from the usual drawings and publicity stills. This made AMT's Klingon ship the most accurate model of its day-- it was impeccable. Some sci-fi kits nowadays are extremely faithful to a screen-used miniature (Moebius makes some great ones, no doubt with modern computer tools), but in the 1970s most kits were rough approximations, and that went double for most Star Trek kits.

    Franz Joseph said in an interview that Michael McMaster sent him his blueprints for the Klingon ship expecting praise, but FJ was not pleased. FJ felt the kid had overtly copied the Enterprise deck plan designs and plugged them into the Klingon shape. But I found the MM plans fun and beautifully drafted.
     
  2. Stoo

    Stoo Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    On the one hand, it's a striking and memorable profile. On the other, that long skinny neck bothers me for some reason.
     
  3. Mario de Monti

    Mario de Monti Captain Captain

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    I believe I read somewhere, that the design of the long neck along with the bulbous bridge module was based on the sitar, a musical instrument from india.

    I always really liked the design. Would love it, if Round2Models released a kit in 1/350 one of these days.
     
  4. DaleC76

    DaleC76 Captain Captain

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    Great design. Very distinctive.
     
  5. Galileo7

    Galileo7 Commodore Commodore

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    Agree. TOS/TAS Klingon Battle Cruiser D-7 and TMP/WOK/TUC Klingon K'T'inga are impressive designs.:vulcan:
     
  6. Metryq

    Metryq Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    And the Millennium Falcon was based on a hamburger.

    The long neck never bothered me. It reminds me a bit of Discovery from 2001; perhaps it was designed that way for the same reason. Maybe the forward fuselage is the only occupied section, the rear being all engine and weapons. (I know, the blueprints tell a different story.) The Enterprise has equally thin pylons supporting its warp engines. None of the STAR TREK designs are constrained by the stresses today's engineers worry about.

    The nominal orientation on-screen makes the Klingon battle cruiser look more menacing, like claws, or the "monster pose" a child might make, arms out and grasping.
     
  7. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Commodore Commodore

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    That would be fantastic! Imagine a KBC in that scale!
     
  8. TREK_GOD_1

    TREK_GOD_1 Commodore Commodore

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    True: no matter what model kit one can think of, I would guess 98% were never screen/miniature accurate. Aurora's "Orion" shuttle from 2001 was a beautiful kit--but next the miniature, there was much to be desired, and let's not even talk about the Romulan BOP, K-7, or early Star Wars kits...

    Most were a case of "in the style of.." rather than being an accurate replica.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2013
  9. mach7

    mach7 Commander Red Shirt

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    I remember reading some where that the skinny neck was designed to keep the crew from mutiny. The neck allowed only one person width for the length thus giving the command/officers in the bridge an easy way to defend themselves from the crew.
     
  10. AtoZ

    AtoZ Commander Red Shirt

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    Interesting. I'd never heard that one before. Kinda puts a spin on the Klingons somewhat and the sort of missions they may be engaged in that would illicit such behavior.
     
  11. SchwEnt

    SchwEnt Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I recall that as well. The "head" of the ship was for officers, separated from the troops in the rest of the ship.

    The Klingon battlecruiser is just the best, just as iconic as the Enterprise. It seems the Klingon Bird of Prey is the big favorite, but it can't compare to the D-7.

    Look at the D-7, there's no mistaking it for a science vessel or just another starship or anything else but a warship. I agree, very distinctive. It looks mean.

    It's got a cobra head, batwings, from the bow it looks like a gunslinger ready to draw, it's all kinds of cool.

    Sure, there's the skinny pencil-neck geek thing going on, but it doesn't detract from the awesomeness that is the Klingon battlecruiser. Another stellar MJ work.
     
  12. Retu

    Retu Commander Red Shirt

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    I remember when I first put a D7 model together (probably AMT), I wasn't satisfied with the color. So I painted it glossy black. It looks downright scary that way.
     
  13. nightwind1

    nightwind1 Commodore Commodore

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    I saw one someone had painted as if cloaked.

    Airbrushed black, with a random starfield all over it as if you were seeing through it.
     
  14. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    That would only work if both it an its enemy were not moving, otherwise you'd see the painted stars moving.
     
  15. Metryq

    Metryq Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    You forgot to mention that the opponent must be relying purely on windows or visible light video cameras to see you. There ain't no stealth in space.
     
  16. The Old Mixer

    The Old Mixer Clean Old Mod Moderator

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    Now, whenever I see a Klingon Battle Cruiser, I'll hear "Norwegian Wood" in my head....Not a bad thing, but certainly incongruous.

    I suppose that "Paint It Black" would be more in the Klingons' style, but I was always more of a Beatles man myself....
     
  17. nightwind1

    nightwind1 Commodore Commodore

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    It's a model. The paint job was to simulate the fact that the ship was invisible. :rolleyes:
     
  18. scotpens

    scotpens Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The Klingon Bird of Prey that first appeared in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock was originally supposed to be a Romulan vessel, and its Romulan origin shows in the overall birdlike appearance and feather-like patterns on the wings. Furthermore, the pivoting wings, wingtip-mounted weapons and lack of engine nacelles make the Klingon BOP look more like something from the Star Wars universe than Star Trek. Not surprising, since the miniature was designed and built by ILM.

    A gunslinger ready to draw. Funny, after all these years I never saw that until just now!
     
  19. publiusr

    publiusr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It's is a favorite ship of mine. It inspired the 3-prong look.
    Look a t draconia, the Eastern Alliance ship--the idea of a long central section with two outriggers flying behind and to either side--D-7 pretty much started that in some respects.
     
  20. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I get that it's a model, but now it's clearer that he was simulating what it would look like cloaked, rather than some camouflage paintjob, which is how I misread it.