Oberth Class – the missing link between Enterprise and Reliant

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by Robert Comsol, Aug 10, 2013.

  1. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    After seeing a photo of an Enterprise-A model kit decal of the airlock port, I will admit that it definitely looks like that's what it is. However...

    I still don't believe that the Oberth class is 120 meters, and I don't particularly care what someone wrote on a sketch. I think it was always larger than that; ergo, it is the same size in TNG that it was in STIII. And this docking port decal actually shows that.

    Those ships are all at different points in space and at different positions relative to the camera. How do you determine each ships' relative size to the other?

    Since not a single one of your reasons can be backed up by canon proof (other than a small registry number which also cannot be reliably used to determine a starship's age), I will certainly continue to believe what I believe.
     
  2. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Commodore Commodore

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    Because the Oberth/Grissom is directly between the camera and the Nebula then you can determine a size range using the Nebula as a reference point. The catch would be knowing what the size/scale of the Nebula is :)
     
  3. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    ^^ Exactly. The "biggest" that Oberth in ST VII could possibly be would be attached to the saucer of the USS Farragut. The further it gets away / the closer it gets to the "camera" it proportionately shrinks in size in relation to this Nebula.

    I'm sure that what we see at the end of ST VII has an easy explanation. IIRC the VFX shots were done by ILM and to composite the VFX single elements in correct scale they relied on the Nilo Rodis (ILM) size comparison chart he made for ST III which never intended the Grissom to exceed 120 meters.

    I think that's especially obvious when we look at the NCC registry on the engineering hull / pod of Grissom and Copernicus which compared to other outer hull markings would be unusually big for a Starfleet vessel exceeding 120 meters.

    Agreed, the docking port decal of the Pegasus suggests a bigger ship, but early on in this thread I recommended we look at this possibility. ;)

    Bob
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2013
  4. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  5. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    I'm familiar with this article (commendable in-depth analysis and research) but this wouldn't be the first time I'd have to tell Bernd that I find some conclusions detestable:

    "The ship obviously wasn't carefully designed by ILM." :wtf:

    The ship was carefully designed for an overall length of 120 meters and the last scene of an Oberth at the end of ST VII is obviously a testament to that.

    Correct conclusion: The size of the ship was obviously altered for TNG applications.

    If anybody is to blame for presenting the ship at a scale other than intended, it's those responsible for the presentation of TNG (probably had to do something with small TV sizes back in the early 1990's)

    Then this: "120m - two decks The very small Oberth has all the problems listed above. The only benefit of this size is that it would match with the small "Generations" Oberth, but it would not be inhabitable."

    Why would it not be inhabitable?!? Because there's no space to allow for turbo lift travel through the pylons? There's not even any visual evidence in Grissom's bridge footage from ST III that the vessel had a turbo lift. And with a ship that small that shouldn't be surprising as you could also use ladders and Jefferies Tubes to reach any location aboard the vessel within a few minutes. ;)

    That's how I feel about it. For TNG we need a bigger version, as suggested by the Pegasus' airlock / docking ring (that's something that needs to be added to the article and should determine the actual TNG size)

    Bob
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2013
  6. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think the simplest conclusion is that 120 meters was an erroneous figure and should not have been used.

    It did not fit particularly well with the original details of the model, nor particularly well with the way the model was depicted in TSFS. Further, TNG points towards the ship being bigger than this.
     
  7. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    You don't happen by any chance to be biased after you've seen blssdwlf's beautiful size comparison sugesting the Oberth Class scouts to be "mid-size" vessels? :rolleyes:

    The model was featured to be 120 meters long in one of the most beautiful Star Trek VFX scenes I could possibly think of.
    So we just disregard that?

    Admittedly, chances are high that the ILM VFX artists did notice the docking ring decal on the Pegasus which should have told them a thing or two. But apparently they decided to go with the scale first "established" by one of heir own (Nilo Rodis).
    I can't decide who's been rubbed the wrong way. As the "creator" of the Grissom Rodis was probably not too excited seeing his baby grow that large as in TNG. On the other hand the new scale was established by quantity of screen time etc. in TNG the guys at ILM should have considered - for a TNG movie!

    :confused: I thought that the lack of surface details to reliably tell us the scale was the major problem.

    Here I'm rather confident that the large NCC registry on the engineering pod of Grissom and Copernicus indicates a smaller size.
    We are still uncertain what the stern opening of the pod is for (at 120 meters it could still be a propulsion exhaust nozzle) and the saucer lights are confusing and misleading at best, IMHO:

    Assuming these are standard sized windows makes the ship bigger beyond credibility because of the contrast to the featureless pod.

    Assuming these are tiny portholes could work for three decks in the saucer, but would still beg explanation for the central domes. Regarding these I'm wondering if these could not be sensor openings covered by a metal dome.
    After all, the TOS Enterprise had glowing domes and what we see here may be the same kind of dome, just mostly covered up.

    A ship of riddles it is, indeed. :)

    Bob
     
  8. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Haha, nope.

    Which scene was that? :)

    Well, if that original scale diagram was accurate, then indeed it is 120 meters... but I'm thinking he intended both to be larger, hence the rows of windows on the Oberth saucer that don't line up with the established decks of a 120 meter ship.

    Further, I'm fairly certain that the docking port was indeed added later, towards the filming of "The Pegasus," as a way to establish the newer larger size. It seems apparent based on Mr. Jein's wrecked Vico vs. production's Vico MSD that various people had different ideas about just what size the bird was. It seems plausible that the model team might have tried to force the issue by including the scale dock as visusal "proof" that the ship was larger.

    The size of the lettering itself?

    Agreed. ;)
     
  9. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    This is how I feel as well.
     
  10. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Admiral Admiral

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    Wasn't an Oberth seen docked at Deep Space Nine once or twice? Perhaps the port was added for that (if indeed that's where it attaches - my memory's kinda foggy)
     
  11. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Never mind, it appears you are on a blue pill diet at the moment so I will leave it at that. ;)

    Thanks for the reminder. You illustrated a deck layout in one of the earlier posts but you assumed a rather high deck height which mustn't necessarily be the case here, IIRC.

    Agreed. I assume you would have loved to see such an airlock / docking ring on the Excelsior to help dertermine its "actual" size? I'm still excited that we have this feature for the TNG Oberth Class, at least.

    Yes. I think this becomes obvious when you look at Tsiolkovsky's erroneous "Kirk Era" registry on the pod (NCC-640) compared to the smaller and longer TNG and DS9 five-digit registries.

    And then there's the Starfleet penannt on the nacelles. Compared to the average size on other Federation ships it looks rather oversized and overblown for a vessel vastly exceeding 120 meters in size, doesn't it?

    @ King Daniel

    The moment you mentioned DS9 I thought to remember the same thing. But according to the archives I was unable to locate any evidence. As for myself I might have been thinking of the Sydney Class (e.g. USS Jenolan) docked at DS9. Probably Bernd, Timo and the others would have noticed and mentioned it in their size examination treatise (which could definitely require an update after the airlock / docking ring of the Pegasus has been revealed, IMHO).

    Bob
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2013
  12. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yes, the one time (and only one time) that an Oberth appears in Deep Space Nine was in the pilot episode. Besides the one getting destroyed at Wolf 359, the ship Dax and Bashir arrive in is also an Oberth. However, the ship doesn't use a docking port or pylon, but just hovers underneath the station.

    Since when has there ever been any canon rule about lettering and pennant sizes in relation to the size of the ship they are on? If the Oberth is 150 meters instead of 120, the size of the lettering and pennants wouldn't be appreciably larger anyway.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2013
  13. yenny

    yenny Captain Captain

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    With the Vico having 15 decks? I would say that the Oberth class are 180 meters in length instead of 120.
     
  14. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    At the time I honestly couldn't think of a scene in which the size could be firmly extrapolated... unless your referring to the closing scene in "Generations"?

    True, but since redressed Enterprise refit bridge and redressed Enterprise-D corridors were used to represent two Oberth ships, we should conclude similar deck heights. If I find time, I'll revisit it, but Reverend's probably got it right at the size he pegged it at.

    I would - and I understand your excitement - it's just that I think there's enough evidence to think that the decal was added later, on TNG, so we don't know that it represents original size intent.
     
  15. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    @ Praetor

    Sorry, I thought you were going for "ignorance is bliss". Yes, the last scene from ST VII with that 120 meter Oberth Class vessel was the one I had in mind.

    Okay, here's what's on my mind regarding the exterior hull Starfleet markings:

    The USS Grissom had its lateral name (BTW, what did it say on the actual model? "Starship" or "Scoutship"?!?) printed between these red stripes on the nacelles.

    These would have looked definitely oversized in comparison to the CSC Enterprise if we were to assume Grissom was that big as in blssdwlf's size comparison below.
    At a length of 120 meters these probably still looked believable as did the large registry letters on the engineering pod.

    The USS Tsiolkovsky still had the name between the nacelle stripes, the USS Pegasus shown below no longer did (how about the others?).

    Because of the airlock docking ring, the USS Pegasus now looks like a ship with an overall length of at least 220 meters.

    But upon closer examination it's not only the airlock / docking ring of the Pegasus that matches the CSC Enterprise but also

    • the size of the Starfleet insignia (close match)
    • the red stripes on the engineering hull (close to perfect match)
    [​IMG]

    I'd dare to say that together these three exterior hull features are very good evidence to help in fixing a palatable standard size for the Oberth Class ships featured in TNG.

    Of course, the Grissom and her cousins are still a different story, IMHO, and not only because the name on the nacelles might look too big. ;)

    Bob
     
  16. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think it would be interesting to take a side view of both, approximate the size of the docking hatch on the Oberth model, and then scale the two accordingly. I think we'll end up with a Grissom close to 200 meters long.

    Maybe I'll try that this evening. :)
     
  17. Patrickivan

    Patrickivan Fleet Captain Newbie

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    So what's the verdict? I've been enjoying this thread immensely!
     
  18. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Commodore Commodore

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    I'm estimating 189m for the TNG Grissom scaled against the circle docking port (based on a 305m Enterprise). 220m if you use a 355m Enterprise.
     
  19. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Prepare for fuzzy math!

    So, I used this image of the Oberth, and estimated that the airlock is about the same width as the pylon. (I duplicated the double lines I used to size the airlock and moved them.)

    [​IMG]

    I hope Reverend forgives me borrowing his side view, but it's pretty much the most accurate one anywhere. Guesstimating on relative placement, we end up with this. The red dot represents the airlock. The sizing and shuttles are Reverend's from his size assumptions.

    [​IMG]

    Making use of my 2 pixels = 1 meter scaled 305 meter refit from the Excelsior thread, I scaled down the previous image until the red dot representing the decal on the Oberth matched the size of the airlock on the Enterprise.

    [​IMG]
    Note the yellow lines representing decks, which I scaled from the generally accepted two deck thickness of the Enterprise saucer. (And yes, I know they're not evenly spaced, but it's close enough for this.)

    Using that same 1 meter = 2 pixels scale, we end up with an Oberth that cozily fits 4 decks in the saucer, adjusted downward to accomodate the indented ring detail on the saucer top.

    She's about 239 meters long, and about 71 meters tall.

    [​IMG]

    Obviously, this is based on the visual accuracy of my scaling of the airlock and then scaling the Oberth to the Enterprise. In fact, I shrank the red dot slightly to fit the actual size of the airlock indent itself and tried to scale the images accordingly, so if anything she might be scaled a pixel too small.

    In any case, if we go by the airlock, I think this is about where we end up.

    What does everyone think?
     
  20. Patrickivan

    Patrickivan Fleet Captain Newbie

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    Seems too big now...

    Maybe that wasn't a docking ring. Maybe it was a refueling hatch of some sort. I mean yes, it looks like it in the images, but I don't know. I like it being a smaller ship.
     

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