Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by Warped9, Apr 7, 2022.
Hi Doug. Nice to "see" you again.
For what it is worth, I seem to recall the less finished side had a completely different porthole arrangement composed entirely of circular openings.
This model has been painted, repainted so many times—for all we know…some kid might have written “Eat at Joe’s” on it in crayon at some point.
The inside trough of the right nacelle being absent made me think of that one particular shot of the Enterprise in "Tribbles" looking forward from behind and between the nacelles. I know I never noticed the missing trough and now that I can't see anymore, I can't check the shot but is it very noticeable that it's missing?
For many years I didn’t even realize it was missing. It’s as if my mind’s eye or imagination were actually seeing it in place.
So you're saying it can be seen that the trough is missing in that shot I mentioned?
If you’re paying attention you can see it’s painted on rather than being a recessed detail like on the port nacelle. Otherwise you might not really notice anything is amids.
Here's the space station approach shot in "The Trouble with Tribbles" and "The Ultimate Computer":
Yep. And shots like that illustrate the limitations of missing physical details.
As the author of the video.... I would like to point out a few things.
Richard Datin's daughter actual says on page 80 of her book: "My father originally stated; 'the left side was as detailed as the right when it was first delivered before it was subjected to the changes for lighting requested by Gene."
Now those are her words, recorded in a book years before I started asking why the left nacelle was finished. A question, I must point out, that had never been asked before to any of the people I spoke with. In fact, to date, these are the only words that ever were used to describe the model before the multiple upgrades that Datin had to perform as it was filmed.
Now, people can choose to simply dismiss her statement because it runs contrary to what the "experts" say. But she was very specific about the statement. By the way, I do greatly recommend this book to anyone who doesn't already have it. In this book, you will find a great many things that Datin said about the "experts" who were misrepresenting his work. One case was Justman & Solow's Inside Star Trek; where he said "they wrongly attributed the building of the Enterprise to Darrell Anderson and his crew of model makers". He also had issues with the original Star Trek Sketchbook. And even "The Art of Star Trek" says "the Enterprise was built by Don Loos".
My point here is far too many people take what they've been told as gospel without trying to do any research to find corroborating evidence.
The folks that I checked with while researching this video knew exactly what I was trying to document and why I was trying to document it.
If you look at the model today on its left side; you will see that structurally the surface of the engineering hull has one significant design that is on the right side, but not the left - the wooden block on the right side's pennant it not presents on the left side. Even today, after 50+ years, that is the only significant structural difference that can be seen on the surface of the model.
Finally, Gary Kerr actually left a few comments concerning the video. The last one included " Btw, if you look closely at the secondary hull in the b&w 1974 NASM photo, you can see the "ghost" of the red side banner. I suspect that it was originally created using red tape, and sometime later it was peeled off the hull, leaving a cleaner, lighter-colored image on the grungy left sec of the hull."
So, in December of 1964, the 11foot model was delivered to Anderson with windows, lights, pennants, letters, and numbers painted on both side of the model. The only physical difference may have been the missing block on the left side. But even then; for some unknown reason they photographed the model from every side by the left. So, I can't say if the block was there and later removed, or if it wasn't there at the start.
I'm not an expert. You've never heard of me. And maybe no one ever will. This is not about getting "clicks" on YouTube. That assertion is offensive. I'm an aging Boomer who has already realized that we've lost far too much Star Trek history because we never asked the right questions in the past.
So instead of saying counter-productive comments like "The author says -well there's your problem". Try actually watching the video like the OP did here. If I get something wrong, then let me know. But don't pass judgement on something because it runs contrary to years of Star Trek urban legends. Do the research and ask the same questions.
Or just close this window, throw my entire response into a mental trashcan, and move on to something else.
While I can appreciate your frustration your contention about "research" ignores the fact that some of us have done it. As I posted upthread, I exchanged emails with Mr. Datin in 1995 and asked about this and he said: "The Enterprise flew from left to right on the screen so it was not necessary to detail the other side."
Further, anyone who's studied this ought to notice that the port side of the model isn't just missing the "box" next to the antenna/deflector, it's missing the plates under the nacelle domes.
I can buy that they painted details on the port side in the event it was ever glimpsed—and which got obliterated when the lighting was addd—but that doesn't mean it was ever as detailed as the starboard side.
The left side does not have the flat detail at the front of the secondary hull at deflector dish; it's just round, plus the inside of the right nacelle (only seen from the left side) was not detailed so it was never detailed like the right side.
Despite having no first hand knowledge, it seems to me that the original large model delivered for the pilot was obviously not lit (which we do know) and was very likely detailed on both sides (which is conjecture on my part). Roddenberry asked that lights be installed sometime between the first and second pilot which required that the model be opened to install lights in the saucer as well as the secondary hull. This opening appears to have been patched after the wiring was installed, creating the version of the model seen in the photo that required minimal wiring and power to light up the model as seen in the second pilot. Once the lighting effects and motors were added to the nacelle caps, the power and wiring had to be substantially updated creating the heavily modified secondary hull on the Enterprise model we see today.
We may never know how much or how little detail there was on the port side when it was first delivered for "The Cage." But of course, by the time it was delivered in its final definitive version for "The Corbomite Maneuver," the entire port side was a total loss, as one can confirm with a visit to the Smithsonian NASM anytime it's on display (not at this particular time, but there are plenty of pictures on the Smithsonian web site, including several shots of port side). I made the visit while changing trains in Washington, DC, some years ago, actually booking myself a long enough layover to parcel-check my bags, walk to the NASM Mall building (conceivably, they could also put it on display at the Udvar-Hazy at some point, assuming they haven't done so already), see and photograph it (they had it on a timed cycle to show off the restored practical effects), and grab some lunch in their chow-hall, and still have time to walk back and catch my train to Williamsburg.
There is no doubt in my mind that with modern technology, they could just as easily have detailed it symmetrically, to better represent its fictional prototype, but that would have been at the cost of unnecessary modifications that would have ruined it as a representation of what it actually is, a mid-1960s filming miniature.
I'm curious: Are we entirely certain that the recessed area containing the control reactor loop and the first eight flux chillers was actually hollowed out on even the starboard nacelle, in the "Cage" version, or even the "WNM" version? Could it be that in that version, both were merely painted?
"Modern technology"? They could have done it in 1964 had they decided to. They chose to build a one-finished-side miniature sans provision for lighting, then modified it in the least expensive way possible when it was retrofitted. I have to check with @Harvey but I think we have a work order related to Datin calling out specific mods and their cost.
The inboard trench on the port nacelle appears as a physical cut-in as early as the photos of the model on the street before it was delivered. (photo)
I was speaking of the Smithsonian's most recent restoration work. To the best of my recollections, they used more modern lighting and motor technology than existed in the 1960s, which would have drawn far less current, and produced far less waste heat, allowing for more lighted windows while still using much finer wires, but they chose to be faithful to the reality of it being a 1960s studio miniature, rather than to the fantasy of it being a 23rd century starship. As to the original builders, yes, they most certainly were working on a shoestring budget; moreover, it only had to be good enough for NTSC standards and on-air broadcast using 1960s technology.
And looking at the street picture, it's difficult to tell one way or the other. I've seen plenty of trompe l'oeil art, in various museums. But I'll take your word on it, especially since it looks significantly better than the port side of the starboard nacelle.
There are tells in perspective. Sure you could do a trompe l'oeil to get what you see here, but it wouldn't look right at anything but this sort of angle.
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