Thoughts on the Maquis raider?

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by Blip, Sep 17, 2016.

  1. Blip

    Blip Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    By "raider" I'm referring specifically to Chaoktay's ship as seen in Voyager, not the smaller-scaled version, nor the Maquis fighters used in DS9.

    While I've always been a fan of the raider's silhouette, the details riled me as being over the top for a ship that size (the result scale changes inflicted upon a studio model meant to represent a smaller vessel; what can you do!), and at odds with the Starfleet aesthetic - particularly in terms of keeping equipment easily accessible from the interior. Not to mention the non-standard elements, such as the inboard warp engines, weapon-like sensor pods, and impulse engines directing thrust anywhere but aft.... (yes, I know how we could Treknically excuse that, but it's hardly in keeping with other designs).

    It got me riled to the point that I started doodling over a dorsal plan I found on the web, to eliminate some of the excessive doodads, install standard nacelles, etc, but this got me to wondering on why it was even designed the way it was (both in and out of universe); looking like a rough-cut Starfleet BOP, and what purposes it would have served while it was in service.

    I'd considered it being an armed courier, or maybe for colonial patrol and defence (against low-grade piracy?), but don't feel that this justifies the BOP design when regular SF designs should do the job. Anyone else had any thoughts on this?

    Likewise on the overall design, I'd be interested to hear how anyone else might think of altering it (if at all!) :)
     
  2. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I agree with you. It never got a ton of play, but I got the model kit shortly before the premiere of VGR and studied it intently. I was nothing short of puzzled by it to say the least.

    Besides the cockpit design (*cough*), it does bear some similarities to the runabout, although much more crude and unrefined. B'Elanna refers to the engine as a "thirty-nine year old rebuilt engine." This is an awfully precise number. Since the episode was set in 2371, we can speculate that the ship was built in 2332. OTOH, it may not have bee the shp's orignal engine, as the LCARS panels could place it as a contemporary of the TFF or TUC. It does lack the characteristic red bussard glow of the TNG era, after all.

    Perhaps the ship was designed to be an early attempt at a runabout-type craft. Perhaps also, it was partially inspired by the birds-of-prey employed by the Federation's enemies at this time?
     
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  3. publiusr

    publiusr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Those look like full sized torpedo tubes in the rear.
     
  4. Blip

    Blip Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Hey, I had the model kit too! :D

    I wouldn't use the LCARS as any sort of indicator, since the Enterprise-C had similar graphics.. On the other hand it could be that the original hull was older and the Impulse drive was one B'Elanna herself refitted and installed?

    I always figured the Jenolen was actually an early, larger runabout.. Regardless, the Raider hull is an unfortunate mess of Star Wars-esque lumps, vents and doodads. It had character, but might have been better painted green!
     
  5. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The Raider aft hull really is a very simple shape, a flat box with a couple of holes for warp glow. Which is why I don't think there's much grounds for arguing it doesn't scale well: a box would be a box be it on a small or a large "version" of this design. Or on that Voyager-sized kitbash for that matter.

    How many of those greeblies and doodads on the outside are Maquis additions can be debated. It's pretty simple to strip off all the small detail and just leave the wing hinges, most of the radiator grilles, and perhaps the clamp-like wing guns. Perhaps the smallest thing they could make fly at respectable warp back in the day, hence the unseen "auxiliary courier" from "The Maquis pt I"? This interpretation would also support the idea that most of the greeblies are of Maquis make, as these ships carry heavy guns under the command of Eddington, but back in "The Maquis" they were not yet capable of this and those Starfleet attack craft had to be used instead.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  6. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Admiral Admiral

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    My impression, which is probably completely wrong, was that the Maquis ship was a generic alien design the art department modified to look more Federation-y.
     
  7. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I always see the Raider-type as being a mass-produced Federation craft (not Starfleet) that were easy to build, maintain, and convert for pretty much any purpose was required by the owner. The inclusive nacelles and "rugged" exterior to keep the profile compact and maximise interior space where possible.

    I assumed they were popular with outlying colonies due to being near easy to run and adaptable, so they could be used as couriers, freighters, private runabouts, escorts, scouts, etc, which is how the Maquis had so many at their disposal.

    That's how I see it anyway. I've given the class some thought as I've contemplated a civilian fanfic on such a ship.
     
  8. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Generic alien? Perhaps. More specifically, she was needed for "Preemptive Strike", and she needed to be built around the Generic Alien Shuttlecraft Cabin, with all those triangular windows. But they gave that cockpit Starfleet LCARS displays from the get-go... Those, plus the Starfleet transporter effect.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  9. Blip

    Blip Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Precisely. Both in TNG at the smaller scale and in "Caretaker" with the larger interior and presumably higher crew count, the interiors were specifically given Starfleet style displays etc.

    As to the aft hull being "flat", that's very much an oversimplification. There are various hull elements on the dorsal surface particularly, that are too large and well integrated to be subsequent additions by the Maquis - certainly if we were to take the larger scale model at face value. The smaller greeblies however (such as the pods forward of the "nacelles", the doohickeys above where the warp core is supposedly installed, the wingtip cannons, and the "countermeasures" packages either side of the enlarged cockpit) I could see as being Maquis retrofits, but that's besides the point regarding studio model scaling. What would have looked feasibly like Maquis jury-rigging and repairs at a smaller fighter scale now not only look ugly and fudged together on the larger vessel, but also imply that the Maquis have better facilities - or rather, those capable of handling heavier work - than we've generally had any indication of on any of the episodes.

    YMMV of course. But in any case I'd personally rather make more intrinsic changes to the design so as to more adequately scale it up, instead of fudging the existing fighter model! :techman:
     
  10. Tim Walker

    Tim Walker Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I suspect that the design was also an early attempt at a warp capable craft that can land on/take off from a planet.

    Two different goals attempted in one design.

    And the result was a versatile work horse.
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2016
  11. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Being comfortable to operate inside atmospheres and on and off planetary surfaces would be great for frontier colonies. Landings and takeoffs are not mandatory for operations: transporters can take care of all that, and the ship is better off floating in orbit in almost every respect. But maintenance at the frontier calls for the ability to park the thing where she can be directly accessed by people wearing faux Native American garb and elbow grease.

    I could still well see those "primitive" or "rugged" repairmen bolting on extra radiators, triplets of ECM pods, wingtip and wingroot guns - at two different scales, because big radiators need not look different from small ones, a canister for ECM gear is a canister (but big ships might need more of that gear), and guns today generally do look fairly similar regardless of scale (the business end of an AK-47 resembles that of a 155 mm field piece to a surprising degree, also functionally).

    What I have a bit of trouble seeing is how the intrepid Maquis mechanics gut the busiest part of the ship, right between the main impulse engines, and install full-sized torpedo tubes there... I sorta doubt those were a manufacturer option for the basic model. But let's remember that these big ships were not available to the Maquis back in "The Maquis", while their smaller counterparts apparently were also inferior to the Starfleet Attack Fighter, of which they had just two. The process of fitting out the ships for guerrilla warfare may have been a prolonged one, and the Maquis resources for that lesser than we might otherwise think.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  12. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It'd probably be wise to gloss over the Yeager-type drive section.
     
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  13. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I'd hate to! The Reliant was to the Enterprise what the Yeager is to the Voyager: the same smoothly flowing shapes for the primary hull, directly and forcibly mated to an ugly box... One with bigger impulse engines and broader warp engine pylons, too. Plus with twin barn-door shuttlebays (which the aft corner grilleworks of the Yeager tail can be interpreted as).

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  14. Blip

    Blip Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Again I think this would be a situation best served by keeping the overall silhouette of the raider, but making heavy changes to the hull surface and detailing so as to better match it with the Intrepid primary hull (and thus avoid the glaringly obvious signs of it being a kitbash!)
     
  15. Andrew Woodall

    Andrew Woodall Commander Red Shirt

    I find that since getting the Eaglemoss ST ships line there are some designs I've re-evaluated, the raider being one of them.

    I like the idea that perhaps the wings were a Maquis add on in order to add weapons, and the original 'courier' design was just the compact primary hull.
     
  16. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I thought it was clear from the design and from dialog that the ship was a much older design that had been extensively modified and weaponized by the Maquis. It was probably something that was cheap and plentiful and that they had ready access to, so it's the 24th century equivalent of Technical.

    [​IMG]

    All the extra shit bolted on to it is probably what turns an otherwise totally harmless civilian craft into a mostly-harmless combat vessel. Since it probably doesn't have the internal space to house things like military-grade shield generators, targeting sensors, ECM equipment, photon torpedo guidance systems, high-output maneuvering thrusters, heavy phaser banks, hardened transporter systems, high grade structural integrity fields and inertial dampers, they'd have to bolt most of that stuff to the outer hull plating or attach modules containing that hardware, screwing up the profile of an otherwise sleek design. Also worth considering is that some of the messy greebling around the hull might literally just be armor plating slapped into place because they didn't want to get shot down by some Cardassian asshole with a phaser rifle.

    The real question in my mind is why the Maquis never helped themselves to the old mothball ships at Qualor-II like the Romulans did in "Unification." There bound to be lots of junked Miranda and Constitution class starships they could renovate to turn into proper starships. I assume this is either because the Raiders got them a better economy of scale (the mods were easy to mass produce and slap onto the hull) or because they just didn't think they could afford to hide or maintain anything bigger.
     
  17. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I don't see it that way at all:

    [​IMG]

    The wings could easily be additions specifically to house phaser banks for an otherwise unarmed ships. Same again for those little nubbies forward of the blue grill (warp engines?) that could easily be torpedo launchers. The hump back appears finely integrated only because the hull is built up around it in places, but strip away the bulky cowling around the cockpit, the entire "spine" of the ship could cover a section that was originally much narrower and more refined but was stripped away to accommodate a larger power plant. And that's before you consider how the model was actually built: it LITERALLY IS slapped together from parts of other model kits and random bits stuck together just because they look like they fit. There's no reason to think this wouldn't be equally true of the "real world" design.

    The only reason the mods look so "finely integrated" is because we have no idea what the original design would have looked like. But being a Federation design, it would probably have a much more angular design with a more smooth and symmetrical profile.

    IMO this thing works way better at 70m than it really did at the smaller scale anyway.
     
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  18. Blip

    Blip Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I know it's an older design - B'Elanna's dialog and the movie-era displays are sufficient evidence of that - not sure what bearing you think this has on how extensively they had to weaponise it though? In fact, the displays suggest it was a Starfleet ship, so was likely already armed (or still had the original fittings for mil-spec hardware)!

    I don't believe it was ever a civilian design; though I can easily imagine it being used for policing the distant colonies and for minor courier duties. Most of the equipment you note would be there as standard - though likely requiring some hefty refit work as per the engines.

    While I totally agree you with regards the smaller doodads and doohickeys tenously attached to the exterior, I'm afraid I totally disagree on the basic hull form underneath - to me it's about as well-integrated as the "humps" etc on a runabout (and at substantially larger size), and thus merits consideration as being the actual hull of the craft. Furthermore, considering the number of crew onboard it suggests that a lot of that mass would likely be liveable areas (the crew size itself being so high not least because a vessel that old would need a fair amount of hands-on operation and repairs), so I doubt it's just a simple matter of saying that they slapped on extra power plants or hull plating and be done with it.

    I always would have loved to see them jury-rigging an old Constitution, but since they'd need as you say the facilities to run it - plus sufficiently experienced crew to handle what would have been a very crew-intensive design, I couldn't imagine it working well. Much better off with smaller more maneuverable craft that could evade detection and pursuit (and avoid their numbers being consolidated into one big fat target that the average Galor would rip to shreds)....
     
  19. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I don't remember anything in the displays that suggested Starfleet origin. It certainly didn't seem to have a modern LCARs system, but even that wouldn't indicate much since those same LCARs displays are sometimes seen in civilian facilities as well.

    I believe it was, mainly because it doesn't really fit in the lineage of what we tend to think of as standard Starfleet designs. We've seen most types of shuttlecraft and runabouts embarked on starships, but we've never seen anything of a similar class or size of the Maquis raider in the fleet. We've seen lots of alien ships in a similar class -- Baran's pirate vessel, for example -- with the implication that most of these ships are privately owned or owned by small-time operators/corporations/governments and not part of a formal fleet.

    They're part of the actual hull NOW, but we have no idea what the hull would look like without all that stuff added on. Again, most of the "doodads" are literally glued onto the actual model from bits and pieces of other model kits. Note the original design lacks alot of those extra bits:

    [​IMG]

    So in-universe, the same could easily be true of whatever the Raider was originally modified from. Being a larger ship than the fighter, the difference is likely even more noticeable.


    Which is the main reason I suggest that all they stuff they had to add to the ship to make it an effective combatant would have been bolted on to the OUTER hull. It probably began its life as a personal yacht or a charter transport of some kind (Federation equivalent of a 767) and the Maquis outfitted it with all the gadgets and extras it needed to be useful as a combat ship.
     
  20. Ithekro

    Ithekro Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I always considered it possible that the Maquis has access of an old civilian yard someplace in the colonies to produce small craft, and used it to convert ships for combat uses.
     
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