TOS Enterprise stairs and turbo lift walk arounds

Discussion in 'Star Trek - Original Series' started by Robert Comsol, Jul 10, 2013.

  1. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Hi, this new thread is connected to my deck plan thread (partially as a preparation for drafting Decks 8 thru 11) but I thought the issue to be of a more general interest, hopefully.

    Both in “Let That Be Your Last Battlefield” and TWOK we witnessed that the turbo lifts were not operational below Deck 3 forcing Lokai and Bele and Admiral Kirk to descend counter-clockwise from deck to deck by the apparent use of (unseen) stairs.

    Each time Lokai and Bele popped up on a lower deck (i.e. Decks 4 and 5) they came from a spot near the infamous A-frame corridor (next to the transporter room studio set). I think in-universe there are stairs very close to the A-frame but we never saw these.

    Other than that the circular main corridor mostly looked like to have two dead ends with turbo lifts blocking passage. While I don’t believe the turbo lifts can be abused as revolving doors there are a couple of set oddities that suggest walk arounds.

    Also in “Let That Be…” is a nice example where Lokai (and especially Bele) don’t exit a bulkhead door but seem to be coming out of the “sickbay bedroom” (not the exam room door!).

    Although there isn’t really enough space for a turbo lift walk around corridor because of the sickbay bed displacement, here is a shot that reveals an unusual opening at the right side of the corridor wall next to sickbay.

    Assuming that the corridors connect in-universe at their opposite ends, the corresponding walk around entry on the other side would look something like this.

    Interestingly, this wall opening near the engine room set is not without precedence. We had seen something similar in “What Are Little Girls Made Of?” but it was only an open access to the Season One Jefferies Tube and a dead end – with a turbo lift!

    A-frames in the main corridor?

    This is an enigmatic subject. Judging by the walking direction of “Mudd’s Women” they ended up in a turbo lift with an A-frame ahead in that part of the Season One studio set close to the engine room where there are usually no A-frames.

    Obviously this take was shot near the transporter room and merely mixed with the corridor footage in the editing room to convey an illusion.

    However, in “By Any Other Name” we saw the counterpart to this contraption but this time, the A-frame had been physically removed and placed in the main corridor near sickbay. And again, Kirk seems to have used a walk around corridor (I presume this scene takes place on the starboard side of Deck 6 near the gymnasium or theatre).

    It’s not a bird, it’s not a plane, it’s Super-Spock

    The only item I’m not yet sure about is how Spock made it down to the Phaser Control Room within a few seconds in “Balance of Terror” (and holding on to his pad, I should add!).

    The corridor where he heard Kirk’s firing order cannot be any lower than Deck 8 according to my deck width estimates (unless I were to reduce the radius of the actual main corridor, again).

    If Spock would have run to the inner core there could have been some sort of fireman’s pole taking him down to Deck 11.

    But since he ran towards the outer edge and because there is no place for such a fireman’s pole to take him down there, it looks like the only remaining explanation is a slide (I’m not kidding!).

    If anybody has a better idea, please let’s hear it, I’m open to alternative suggestions.

    Bob
     
  2. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Did the dialog specify that the phaser control room was on deck eleven? From the external views the phasers (or at least the emitters) would seem to be on the lowest saucer level, but the control room wouldn't necessarily have to be immediately ajacent to the phasers themselves.

    :)
     
  3. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    A centrally located facility would probably make the most sense, as the ship does supposedly have phasers all over, despite only a few under-saucer firing locations actually being seen.

    The problem with this is that a facility equidistant from all phasers is just another remote console. Why is this remote console necessary for firing at the Romulans - why not a console on the bridge? It would make technological sense if Spock had to hurry down to physically pull some key lever that moves some heavy mechanical component or something, but Spock merely pushes buttons; by all rights, he should have been able to push such buttons on the bridge, too.

    As for the walkarounds, it would certainly make good sense to have a ladder shaft that connects the decks and is isolated from each deck by an A-frame pressure door. Making this a simple vertical feature and still remaining true to the sets may be impossible - but a zigzagging staircase also makes great sense.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  4. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    The dialogue is not specific, but according to The Making of Star Trek "deck 11 contains the ship's phaser controls and other related equipment and facilities...primary control facilities and equipment are located on deck 11."

    The visual evidence comes in form of the phaser coolant, IMHO.
    As seen in "Balance of Terror" this coolant gas is lethal and I believe that nobody with a sane mind would run such coolant pipes through the populated areas of the ship, but keep the coolant confined to a (small) area and right next to the equipment that needs such hazardous coolants.

    Bob
     
  5. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Commodore Commodore

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    I had put the forward phaser control room further out in the hump area at the same level as the main deck and had the two vertical pipes connect to the top and bottom forward phasers. The tall height of the control room doesn't make it an easy fit in the hull.
     
  6. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    @ blssdwlf

    Yes, it's definitely not an easy fit as Mytran had provided a "corrected" illustration of the phaser room studio set in your thread.

    What I really like is the alignment of the door frame, the phaser coolant bottles and the (unseen) master control panel Tomlinson operated as these would fit nicely within a circular structure (I presume the phaser coolants to be at the bow and in closest proximity to the actual ship phasers), assuming the weapons monitor console (between the two vertical power pipe conduits) is the center.

    I'm starting to wonder if the three phaser batteries / banks (port, starboard, midship) are below and in the sensor dome (according to the dialogues in "Balance of Terror" and "The Doomsday Machine" these batteries or banks have first to be charged / energized before the phasers can fire) and the two power conduits we saw actually charge the port and starboard phaser bank (while a third unseen one in the back charges the midship bank).

    A general problem with this room or set is the waste of space between the console and the phaser coolant bottles. Almost looks like the floor panels in this area could be lifted up to do repair and maintenance on the actual phasers while still leaving enough space for other personnel to walk around this area.

    Still doesn't answer the question how Spock got down there that fast. Maybe a fireman's pole kind of thing within some kind of Jefferies Tube? :confused:

    Bob
     
  7. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Or another case of turbolifts being locally jammed, but accessible below <insert number or letter> deck...

    But those tri-ladders no doubt could be used for sliding; the corridor sets establish tri-ladder shafts at locations supposedly pretty far from the central axis, but at multiple points, so Spock would have to cover some horizontal distance to find the tri-ladder that goes straight down to Phaser Control.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  8. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Interesting. Do you think that one side of the tri-ladder has slide-down rungs to speed up travel?

    The major problem with the whole scene is Spock holding on to his pad as if his life depended on it. So however he managed his way down, he apparently only had one hand to hold on to something. ;)

    Bob
     
  9. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Sliding down a ladder that has no obvious side supports should be easy enough, done the way Kirk does it in ST2: by pressing your shoes against the vertical bars from the outside. But that does take two hands...

    Then again, gravity might be reduced or absent in the tri-ladder shafts (save for whatever convenient "leakage" there is at the levels of each deck), so one might safely simply drop down for ten decks and reach a terminal velocity of all of two meters per second. The way climbing a tri-ladder is portrayed in the show is not completely at odds with such a thing.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  10. Mytran

    Mytran Commodore Commodore

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    I think it could be that's just the curve of the corridor, but concealed behind the panel next to it.
    And check out those other wobbly panels! Battle damage maybe? ;)


    Now, Superspock:
    I can't see why Spock running towards a straight corridor is such a problem. Stairs run diagonally and the lower saucer is diagonal - why not build some stairs into the hull? Yes it means that Spock would have to run out to run back (and down) but he wouldn't have to travel very far out of his way, and he could hold onto his (lucky) clipboard.

    Deck 11 seems quite short on your cutaway, so in effect Spock is only going down the stairs for Decks 9 and 10. If the stairs were continuous, even a mere human could cover that distance in 10 seconds or so (and we don't know exactly how much time passed).

    If we're going to talk Superspock though, what about his performance in TWOK? He makes it from near the top of the saucer (turbolifts inoperable below C-Deck) to the middle of the Engineering hull in what - half a minute? This time we have a countdown to tell us...
     
  11. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    I was definitely thinking about stairs because the diagonal angle of the lower saucer is perfectly suitable for such a thing. But would stairs be acceptable for a phaser crew that just wakes up to a red alert call and needs to get down as fast as possible? Maybe the stairs should have hand rails on both sides, so the crew could slide down as I've seen in some submarine movies?

    Yes, although the Romulan Bird of Prey decloaked, it's unknown whether they had (another) problem getting their plasma weapon ready and/or simply took their time, because the Enterprise looked crippled and dead "in the water" (actually it's rather amazing how long it took them to shut off their fuel consuming cloak while at the same time assuming that the Enterprise was no longer a threat...:rolleyes:).

    Good observation. I'm starting to like the idea of narrow and steep stairs where the hand rails can be (ab)used to slide down...apparently Spock (and Kirk) must have used such stairs in TWOK. :)

    Bob
     

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