Scaling the Excelsior Filming Model

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by Praetor, Aug 18, 2013.

  1. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    Who is John Galt?
    Ummm...wut?
     
  2. Workbee

    Workbee Commander Red Shirt

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    Maurice, there you are! Were you ever able to get in touch with Bill George? Any treasures to share with us?
     
  3. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    I have to presume you are referring to my earlier post.

    If the publisher of this tech compilation issue (from this TNG fanzine) features a schematic where the NCC-1701-A from the original Shane Johnson bridge graphics is covered by the Enterprise-D and presented in a poor copy quality that suggests this might be genuine TNG Art Department material (somehow secured from a copy of a copy etc.), it most definitely is "fraud".

    Whether to push the sales numbers of this fanzine (financial gain) or whether somebody wanted to push the "transwarp" idea (personal gain) is irrelevant, but "fraud" it is.

    Bob
     
  4. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Sorry, but - no. :)

    What was the TOS Enterprise doing in "That Which Survives"?

    She was accelerating to Warp 10 or 11 (IIRC) because antimatter was streaming into the matter-antimatter integrator (reaction chamber?) and they couldn't shut off the stream because Losira had sabotaged it. The fail-safe mechanisms apparently were programmed to inject reaction matter and as a result so much energy was fed into the warp engines that the structural integrity of the ship was severely compromised. Either Scotty was able to shut off the antimatter flow or he would have been jettisoned, either with just the antimatter pod or the whole engineering core assembly (IMHO).

    Back to Excelsior's neck (sorry, can't let go of this). The black thing at the connecting dorsal's stern is annotated as "photon exhaust" in the Official TMP Blueprints.
    The only way I can rationalize this is an exhaust to get rid of photons or gamma rays and could have something to do with the vertical intermix chamber coil nearby. The whole thing sounds rather exotic and strange to me.

    If it's connected with the intermix shaft, this could be a lead interpreting what the outer structure of Excelsior's neck (and the sides of its nacelles) is good for.
    However, it would then appear that Excelsior (in contrast to the Enterprise) has no "space matter" or "space energy" intakes, although the forward thingies in the neck could be space-energy attraction sensors (otherwise absent on the Excelsior).

    I'd tend to assume that the back of the neck is "photon exhaust" while the neck's forward structures are space matter / hydrogen intakes but I'm definitely open-minded to listen to other and better interpretations.

    Bob
     
  5. B.J.

    B.J. Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Considering where it's located, I think it's just an abbreviated way of saying "photon torpedo launcher exhaust".
     
  6. Workbee

    Workbee Commander Red Shirt

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    I take that to be the equivalent of a heat sink for radiation. In my mind, thats the purpose of the black grill things on the Enterprise-A warp nacelles and the Excelsior neck. Since the Excelsior uses most of the neck for this radiation sink, it needs to devote less surface area of the nacelles to the similar function (which is why it just has that thin grill running through the length rather than the thick grills on the Ent-A.

    Going back to the Warp Core, I am thinking a swirly type could work fine as the main difference between TOS Movie and TNG Era Ships are that in the TOS movies, nacelles only glow blue when going to warp. In the TNG era, they tend to glow blue continuously (for the most part). This suggests a change where the engines are being continually primed. The "pulsing" of the TNG engine room (as well as the Ent-E and Defiant Engine Rooms) match up in my mind with the continuously glowing nacelles -- it keeps them primed with minimal power consumption until they hit warp, then the pulsing gets faster.

    Perhaps this is the work or refinement of transwarp drive -- initial implementation put too much wear on the components, and by keeping them continuously primed they last longer. This may also help keep radiation levels at bay, so future generation starships after the Excelsior class needed to devote less surface area to these radiation sinks.

    Of course, this is all just being pulled out of my butt, so take it for a grain of salt. Unfortunately, it doesn't really fit with Voyager or the NX-01.
     
  7. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    @ B.J.

    Interesting interpretation. Maybe "photorp exhaust" would have been clearer. But if this is where the exhaust of the launcher tubes converges, wouldn't this seriously inhibit the practical use of the airlocks (also from a non-retcon, strictly TMP point of view)?

    @ Workbee

    You mean something like waste heat radiators / dissipators? That crossed my mind, too.

    But since you highlighted the same structures on nacelles and neck I am beginning to wonder if it could have something to do with the enigmatic "transwarp drive".

    We had never heard of transwarp before, nor had we seen a starship with a fat and strange looking neck like that (okay, we had actually not seen that many starships before...). ;)

    Bob
     
  8. Workbee

    Workbee Commander Red Shirt

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    @Bob:

    The Enterprise-C had similar features on part of the neck. Maybe the problem with transwarp is one of stress or heat / radiation buildup. Preliminary tests and proof of concept were successful, the problem occurs when trying to scale it up. The excelsior could have been designed with a more reinforced spaceframe and venting capability. Hence the massive neck covered with heat sinks.
     
  9. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Admiral Admiral

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    I'd go with this one, but add some kind of secondary reactor in the "hump" between nacelle pylons. Something almost NX-01ish.
     
  10. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Holy crap in a hat... that's fantastic. I wonder if that was really used on screen? At the very least, matching text blocks to the montage of onscreen cutaways, it seems pretty accurate. Thanks for presenting that, Workbee! How'd you come across it?

    You may be right... I suppose in actuality Starfleet engineers would take both scenarios into account.

    Interesting interpretation - I'd always assumed the photon exhaust to be related to the torpedoes, like others. However, a variation of your theory makes a good degree of sense. It's part of why my versions have a smaller matter tank in the neck. I think the area under the impulse engines makes too much sense as primary tankage not to use, plus it also sets the precedent for a ginormous tank that later swaps with the lower, more southern tank.

    Haha, I like it! It fits well enough IMO. I'm definitely going to incorporate this notion.

    I'm thinking a combination heat sink/energy exhaust thingy would be a perfect explanation for these grilles, as you and Bob suggest.

    This is the way I'm leaning - frankly because it's too good to have the antimatter pods in the hump to not use it. That, in turn, necessitates the swirl core. In case I forgot to point it out, the core is purposefully aligned forward of the dual deflection crystals (which I realized actually do glow on the Lakota, albeit red) to coincide with the center of the previous, larger deflection crystal.

    My only hesitation in this area is that using the swirl core will require us to ignore what the warp cores were shown to look like in TUC. But frankly, I'm prepared to do that. I'm already going to ignore the bridge shape, no matter what size she ends up being. What's interesting is, this ends up giving us an intermix chamber that's mostly horizontal after all. :rommie:

    I'm thinking the thing in the hump along with the pods will be a combination antimatter injector/EPS manifold. Antimatter pods could be ejected up and away from the humpback, each nacelle could be independtly jettisoned, or in the direst of scenarios, the entire pylon/nacelle assembly could be jettisoned. I suspect this design feature was intentional, given the risky nature of the Great Experiment.

    One thing I'm slightly torn about is dropping the horizontal shaft a deck, as I have done. We know from source diagrams that the top of the secondary hull (the "flattop") has cargo bays directly beneath, which helps explain the flattop itself. To my thinking, these then interconnect to the main hangar bay below. Dropping the PTC a deck as I've done makes more sense, but limits interconnectivity between the port and starboard sections of the cargo bay.

    Then again, given that each one is about the size of the refit Enterprise's cargo bay (ish) I may be able to futz with their configuration a bit to allow greater connectivity slightly lower, while still keeping the PTC relatively out of harm's way. (It makes sense that a ship that was conceived to go farther on its own than the prior generation would have increased cargo and support facilities in this manner.)
     
  11. Workbee

    Workbee Commander Red Shirt

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    HAH... brute force. Just mad, persistent searching deep into the wild recesses of google images. Apparently someone in Japan is a real fan of the Excelsior. Probably lots of useful stuff to be found here at http://sulu.jp/ if you can read Japanese. :techman:


    This is *almost* screen accurate. I think it is just something fan made. This person seems to have made corrections to the impulse deflector crystal to make it match the TUC model (the image used in TUC did not reflect all the changes to the model for the movie. Aside from the colors, the NX and the transwarp labels, this version is probably the closest to what was used in the movie.

    Question: Why does it have to be one deck lower for the swirly pattern instead of the TNG version? Though if this turbolift guide is screen accurate, it looks like it may have to be one deck down. http://sulu.jp/modules/sulu/content/TurboE-control_02.gif

    I had a thought that helps me reconcile the TNG core seen in TUC. What if that is just a diffuser that goes over the swirly core. Meaning that they are all swirly cores, but some are just configured to pulse. Voyager may be explained as a sort of prototype of the new "subspace friendly" warp drive that just didn't get the diffusers in place. Or maybe it is best just to ignore Voyager.

    My point to all this is, the way the TNG core was presented in TUC may not create a problem. As long as it wasn't shown PULSING like in TNG, it could be explained as a new cover. I'll have to go back and check, but the only problematic scene that comes to mind is when they depart spacedock, there is a reflection of the pulsing core lights on the office window that Scotty is standing in. I am comfortable with disregarding a reflection, but now we are doing some real contortions just to rationalize a set reuse. But heck, if other movies can have us accept things such as poor reproductions of the Oval Office being the ACTUAL office of the President of the United States, I can accept that a TNG warp core is actually the TMP warp core.

    Also, wasn't there an episode of TNG where the Enterprise got a new Warp Core installed? So apparently these things can be replaced and upgraded. Giving the option that during TSFS and TVH, they were swirly cores but later on TNG-ish cores were installed.

    Sorry for the crazy long post --- I am still getting the hang of the quote feature on this board. Praetor - I dropped the image from your quote to avoid stretching the thread out even further.
     
  12. B.J.

    B.J. Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I suppose this thread would be the best place to ask, but there's something I've always wondered. I have the ERTL model kit of the Excelsior from decades ago, and in the impulse engine area, they provided *three* clear red pieces for the engines. Two were narrow rectangles and went where you'd expect them to, but the third was nearly square and went in the trench between the other two. It was also a lot further forward, about the same fore/aft location as the aft end of the "fins" on top of the impulse engine assembly.

    I don't ever remember any Excelsior class having a glowy-bit located there, so where on Earth did they get the idea to put one there? It's not as if it was just an extra bit, it was included in the instructions too.
     
  13. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Bill is overseas on a film shoot for a while.

    Your sentence is confusingly worded. Are you or aren't you saying the image in question is possibly a copy of actual Art Department material?
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2013
  14. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Here is my original post # 217 in which I addressed the issue, assuming the Enterprise-D transwarp schematic from that fanzine to be genuine ST Art Department stuff.

    But after the TOS shuttlebay VFX model experience (:rolleyes:) I decided to pull Johnson's Enterprise-A tech manual for a comparison and then realized that the E-D had been just placed over the E-A transwarp schematic from the TM (with the exact same frame text and technobabble numbers).

    Theoretically it could have been a draft for a TNG okudagram but I think this to be very unlikely unless I see an actual TNG okudagram in similar style. I will try to scan a page from that fanzine later to illustrate the issue.

    Bob
     
  15. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Ah, daggumit. Yet another reason I should have studied my Japanese harder. (No, I'm not kidding.)

    Good work, regardless! And I thought I had been into the bowels of Google...

    Ah yes, the deflection crystal. I missed that one on my earlier, cursory review. That second one is pretty cool. It does make me wonder whether they said "transwarp" in the TUC one or not. I'm guessing not, but I think I'll try to give it a closer study this evening.

    That's a pretty cool graphic, too! Interesting to note that, based on the turbolift location, they have sunk the bridge down quite a bit to make it fit, rather than imagine the bridge module is less elliptical.

    I think I was a bit unclear, sorry about that. It doesn't have to be moved down for the TNG version vs. the swirl version, it was mostly just an aesthetic choice on my part. It seems better protected a deck down, and also conveniently allows for that turbolift diagram to make sense.

    A great point really. The first time I took a swing at all this stuff, I was able to use the presence of the TNG cores in the sets to create a narrative where the Excelsior class invented that technology, and it's the fact that it now feels (to me) like an unnecessary contortion, as well as a desire to glean any "real" truth from it, that has made me shy away from it. (That, and not wanting to have antimatter pods above the deflector alcove.) Your notion of a duck that looks like a duck and quacks like a duck but acts like a goose is fine by me. I may just ultimately end up representing the Excelsior core with a drawing of the swirl core though, but make the engine room itself look more like the TNG one. ;)

    Indeed... and with the problems with the bridge module, and the dubious nature of whether we "really" saw the Excelsior warp core, I think I can live with the swirly one.

    Great point too. That was more or less what I was thinking might have happened in my original conceptualization, before it started giving me a stomach ache. ;)

    I don't think the real ship did either. I think the kit calls it an "impulse engine exhaust panel" or something.

    Overall that kit was not super accurate. It left out the niblets on the neck insets, didn't quite get the point where the neck meets the saucer right, leaving out the indent and "collar" atop the neck, and didn't quite get the details on the chasm pod right (but who could really blame them there?) I think there are a couple other weird details I'm not thinking of that were either omitted or just wrong.
     
  16. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Commodore Commodore

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    @Praetor - type in http://sulu.jp into translate.google.com and it'll translate to english for you. Works reasonably well.

    I've been thinking that since the Excelsior has a vertical intermix shaft/core similar to the Enterprise that the Transwarp drive is a bulky, primitive, add-on drive like how we see in Voyager's "Threshold" and when they steal a Transwarp Coil from the Borg (which are more compact and refined). The Excelsior runs up to her top warp speed and then engages the Transwarp Engine to take her up into the Transwarp speed regime. You could then turn the "hump" into the Transwarp component sorta like having a supercharger on an engine. That way you get to keep the vertical core/shaft and leverage the hump.

    Of course later on they add phasers to that hump IIRC in "Paradise Lost".
     
  17. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    I gave my Blu-rays a spin last night to check out some of the Excelsior footage.

    In ST III they really avoided showing any vertical intermix element in the Scotty-Styles "Good night and up your shaft" scene.

    While this could have been deliberate to avoid confusion with the engine room of the Enterprise, the back wall looks so vastly different from what we had seen in TMP and ST II (sufficient distinction, IMHO) that just showing any vertical intermix shaft element might have been something they tried to avoid.

    Did the whole set still exist by the time of ST III or had they just used some leftover elements for Excelsior's engine room?

    Bob
     
  18. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Commodore Commodore

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    I don't know if you could say the walls look different considering it's from the same set. It looks less cluttered because they don't have those free standing gear there.

    You can see some parts of the vertical shaft - a blade of a segment and a side of the connecting ring. But my guess would be either that the set was partially dismantled or that they didn't want to confuse the viewer as to which engine room (Enterprise or Excelsior) they were in and they didn't have the budget to make Excelsior's core unique.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I was going to do that or peruse in Chrome, I was mostly being melodramatic. I really did make an abortive attempt to learn Japanese. Thanks, though. ;)

    You do indeed recall correctly.

    It's a very interesting idea... and a combination EPS manifold/"supercharger" would make a great deal of sense of the location, and God help me, evoke the NX-01 "plasma accelerator" thing in a way that seems plausible for a new, fancy shmancy drive. I'd still like to keep the antimatter there if at al possible, to avoid putting it above the deflector alcove. Does anyone else have any strong feelings on that?

    It's always been my conclusion that they probably were trying to avoid confusion AND do the scene on the cheap. I always thought they used the upper level for that scene, but perhaps they just put up a fake wall? It does certainly leave things nicely ambiguous.

    So the real question is, what le-le-level are they on? :rommie:
     
  20. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Admiral Admiral

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    Although I'm sure it's no help here, I've always pictured the Excelsior's engineering section the way it looked in the old post-STIII DC Comics series:
    [​IMG]
     

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