Early Phoenix Designs

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by CuttingEdge100, Aug 4, 2015.

  1. CuttingEdge100

    CuttingEdge100 Commodore Commodore

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    I remember in a book a long time ago there was a drawing of the SS Phoenix that looked WAY different than FC's design.

    Anybody remember the book it was shown in and picture?
     
  2. Wingsley

    Wingsley Commodore Commodore

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    Could you be thinking of the "Star Trek Encyclopedia" from the 1990s?
     
  3. Nightowl1701

    Nightowl1701 Commodore Commodore

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    Something like this, perhaps?

    [​IMG]

    The original design was by Greg Jein. John Eaves redesigned it for ST:FC, in part because the Phoenix now had to fit inside a Titan rocket.
     
  4. Albertese

    Albertese Commodore Commodore

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    I like the Jein one better than what we ended up with. I do understand the need for the change, I just liked the older one better.

    --Alex
     
  5. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    IIRC, the original chronology doesn't name Cochrane's ship as the "phoenix." And the test ship we see in "First Contact" definitely isn't suitable for a trip to Alpha Centauri. So this was probably Cochrane's second test ship or one he personally had built for himself after he got rich.
     
  6. Search4

    Search4 Captain Captain

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    It was called the Bonaventure in one of the "history" books. Here's the page.

    [​IMG]

    And here is the actual model - used in background here and there.

    [​IMG]
     
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  7. Warped9

    Warped9 Admiral Admiral

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    Shit! That is soo much nicer than what they used in FC.
     
  8. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ...How?

    For all we know, this is the first warp ship, and the very same one we saw in the movie. Even after scoring the first warp flight and supposedly winning a contract or two thousand, Cochrane probably couldn't have afforded to build new models from the keel up, not immediately. So he'd ditch the original crew pod (which might have been expendable anyway, landing on parafoils while the warp engine remained in orbit) and bolt something heftier there for more extensive test missions - say, a flight to a nearby star. A few extra fuel tanks, a primitive shield against wear and tear from interstellar dust, a high endurance crew pod with landing and takeoff capabilities (and a "Cochrane Industries" registry number!)...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  9. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

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    I like the radiation shield behind the cockpit. Makes sense.
     
  10. B.J.

    B.J. Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I like both for what they are. But I did really like the extra cool factor of the nacelles deploying! :D
     
  11. aridas sofia

    aridas sofia Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Really?

    You see, this is where First Contact really breaks down. Because even if you accept the premise that Titan missiles are still flying out of Montana silos decades after Nomad and Khan leave the Solar System, and accept the "capsule" model of return for rhe crew, you end up leaving the first human-proved warp-capable set of nacelles sitting in space to be salvaged by who-knows-which of Earth's warring nations.

    I'd think profit-conscious Cochrane would be more careful in his planning.


     
  12. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Well, that Titan missile was about a zillion times more powerful than anything we had before the 1990s, or anything we have today or dream of building in this century. I see no reason to think USAF would stop fielding missiles, especially when everybody and his idiot cousin is flying in outer space - something like that Titan VII or whatever would be useful when the need arose to shoot down an ECON cruiser preparing to nuke the US from beyond the Moon.

    What is the risk involved in leaving the warp engine up there? Apparently, there isn't much traffic there in the 2060s, or else Cochrane would have secured a ride from somebody else - not just because his own rocket was ten years behind the cutting edge, but because such a deal would help in committing the partner to purchasing warp. Yet if space pirates immediately launch to grab the test rig, all Cochrane needs to do is press the big red button in his wristwatch. Never mind losing the rig: Cochrane has already demonstrated that it works, and it's the contents of his noggin that he's going to sell in any case.

    Taking the rig back down to Earth would be a major mistake, as it would then become all the easier for hoodlums to capture it!

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  13. Nightowl1701

    Nightowl1701 Commodore Commodore

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    Comparing the Phoenix, Bonaventure and Valiant designs, it seems to me the 'Warp One Engine' is all contained in those two nacelles, reactors, fuel and all; pluck those off with their easy-to-customize pylon 'boom' attached and strap them on another ship and it automatically becomes a warp ship (provided you've got controls in the cockpit for them, not to mention a nav deflector and artificial gravity - something pirates may find hard to come by). That's the only 'rig' to be worried about, and you can easily jettison those anywhere between Mars and Earth (where they're too tiny to be noticed unless you know what you're looking for) and come back to pick them up later. Once the concept is proven, the next step is mass production of 'the rig' to slap Plug-and-Play on top of any pre-existing Earth sublight craft (like the Valiant). Custom-built internal engines (and the ships built for them) come later, with the Warp Two Engine (Conestoga?).
     
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  14. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Sounds possible. Alternately, all of those exotic greeblies aft of the shield of the above ship, or aft of the cabin in the first-flight rig, are necessary elements of the warp drive, and Cochrane risked it all in not carrying a practical sublight drive or a high endurance life support system or other such unnecessary extras. The Valiant would retain a sublight drive (or then one is part and parcel of the warp rig, making use of the exhausts of the power-producing reactor), but her former big fuel tank would now be dedicated to housing all this vital warp machinery nicely out of sight.

    That the pylons are spindly doesn't mean they aren't a vital connection - they continue to be spindly in later designs, including the TNG era ones where the warp engine definitely is mostly internal to the ship's secondary hull. But no doubt the warp coils are a vital and proprietary element of the design in their own right, and Cochrane might want to make sure they cannot be easily stolen.

    I mean, they do appear analogous to the wheels of a car or the propeller of a ship, and in weightless space, you don't even need a jack and a pile of bricks to pry loose the wheels...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  15. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The name "Bonaventure" was a somewhat awkward reference to the TAS episode "The Time Trap" where Scotty spots "the first ship to have warp drive installed" among the wrecks, although in the TAS episode it was drawn as a lumpy proto-Constitution-class.
     
  16. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    It wouldn't be surprising for all sorts of later spacecraft to be named after an important pathfinder, of course - perhaps this is the sixth Bonaventure, and Scotty merely speaks of the name/namesake rather than of the specific vessel they meet. ;)

    Might the vessel of this thread be lurking in the background while USS Insignificant fills the viewscreen and confuses the audience? Yet we do know that Cochrane himself went missing in space, but supposedly in a one-genius spacecraft rather than in a vessel that had a "crew"; the Bonaventure in the Delta Triangle is unlikely to be related that way.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  17. Nightowl1701

    Nightowl1701 Commodore Commodore

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    I could actually see Cochrane stealing his own Bonaventure from the Air & Space Museum (or the 22'nd Century equivalent) for his little joyride to nowhere in particular. Seems like the kind of guy who'd do that.
     
  18. Dukhat

    Dukhat Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Contracts from whom? It was post-apocalyptic WWIII, with no financial infrastructure to be seen. Granted, Cochrane's original reason for building the Phoenix was to make money and retire to some island surrounded by bimbos, but that was obviously his pre-war plan. And based on what was stated in FC, money would no longer be an issue.
     
  19. Mage

    Mage Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    "So uhm, mr. Vulcan..... I kinda had to ditch my ride in orbit, being in all of a rush to get back here for my date with destiny. Could you help me secure that bad boy so I can do some more testing in the future?".

    Also, how the heck, in a post WWIII world, is anyone gonna have the capabilities to quickly mount a search and retrieval mission to get those nacelles? We couldn't to something like that today.
     
  20. Albertese

    Albertese Commodore Commodore

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    TOS gives us the impression that a space-faring infrastructure was already in place by the early 21st C. I would say it shouldn't be overly difficult to access and retrieve stuff from space by the 2060's, in Trek's timeline. Even for Cochrane's equipment. As gravity manipulation is already a thing, I don't think that the recovery or landing of the Phoenix would be problematic at all.

    --Alex