Pros and cons of Franz Joseph's plans

Discussion in 'Fan Art' started by TIN_MAN, Feb 7, 2009.

  1. yotsuya

    yotsuya Captain Captain

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    There is another ship, from reality, that might bear looking at. The USS Constitution, currently in Boston, has been rebuilt roughly every 25 to 30 years and has had many different appearances. Yet through all that, her structure has remained the same. The current ship we see, still carries the original keel and lower section of all the ribs. This would be the same with the Enterprise when she went in for the TMP refit. She seems to have been stripped to her frame and rebuilt, yet the core of the Saucer, Dorsal, and Engineering sections are the same.

    The changes to Constitution over time relate to the above water structure. Initially, she had lower sides and had a figurehead. The masts and yards were change frequently and we have a couple of examples of what she looked like in the form of contemporary pictures and models.

    The earliest photo is from 1858 (oh, she was laid down in 1794 and launched in 1797) and shows the ship much as she is now. This was following her 2nd refit. Her third refit in 1874-78 resulted in many changes, including armament and the addition of a poop deck. When she was retired from active service very few years later, they built a barnlike structure over the decks and minimized the masts.

    In 1907, when she should have had a refit (oak hull planks only last so long), she at least had the barn removed and was restored to look most like her original self (except the bow). Then her fourth refit, and most major, resulted in her looking like the oldest photo from 1858. Her next refit in 1960 was just to replace the oak. In 1975 her bow was modified to be more like her fighting prime. In 1995 the refit again was just to replace the oak.

    If you compare this to the Enterprise, the engines were modified a couple of time, the sensor dish was changed, the bridge replaced, She served several possible five year missions. Then Kirk and crew abused her for 5 years and and Starfleet authorized a major refit. This would be the equivalent of the Constitution's first refit, tripped down and rebuilt. The cosmetic changes would be like the Constitution's many changes to her rigging and figurehead.

    Like Enterprise, Constitution was one of a class. There were three, the United State, Constituion, and President. No two were completely identical. A similar thing happened in the 1960's with the Kitty Hawk class of carriers and again with the Nimitz class. No two of either class are quite the same. For a time the John F Kennedy was considered by some to be a seperate class, but officially she was a Kitty Hawk class carrier.

    That leads me to Enterprise (and Ill have to refer to her by her number to avoid confusion) CVN-65. The carrier had many issues during construction that resulted in a different design for the tower than on any other carrier. In the early 90's the tower was modified, a cosmetic change on par with the Starship's many changes prior to the TMP refit. The Navy's Serivice Life Extension Program refit on Enterprise entailed many major changes to the interior. The watertight doors were changed to be flush with the floor instead of having to step over the high sill. 6 of the 8 reactors were removed (because they found that they only needed two). And I just have to mention as a sideline that the two US Navy ships I have brought up, Constitution and Enterprise, are the Navy's two oldest commissioned ships at the moment. Enterprise will be over 50 when she is retired in a few years. Constitution is over 200.

    So when we encounter differences in ship designs in Star Trek, it is something that should be considered normal for a Navy. Things wear out and need to be replaced. New technology superceeds the old and upgrades are needed. While what we really see is just a redesign of the sets and models, it fits nicely with the now established time-line (which is fairly consistant even with some possible variations) and with typical naval practice. If we can assume that 23rd century shipbuilding is as modular as Sternback stated that 24th century was, then the drastic change of appearace of the Enteprise for the TMP refit makes much more sense. I'd also like to point out that the TMP Enterprise has the same teardrop shaped platform under the bridge as the TOS Enterprise.

    The versions of the Constituion class we have seen in various stages also does not include the original. Our first view of the Enterprise is when she is 8 years old and we never see Constitution. Were they identical or were there some differences. Who knows. Then we have the Cage and the two Enterprise models. I tend to discount the 33 inch model as it was barely used and has some drastic differences from what the 11 foot model looked like. For the Cage, though, the stern view shows the end cap of the warp nacelle and the impuse engines, which are different from what we see in WNMHGB. Then of course are the modifications for WNMHGB and the regular production. Then, we have Constellation. We all know it is the AMT model kit, but it follows the drawings of MJ and FJ. I would consider this the Bonhomme Richard sub-class redesign. Then we have FJ's plan. Then the Phase II Enterprise, then the pre-production movie Enterprise, then the final Movie Enterprise. That makes a possible 8 variations of the Constituion Class that we know about, plus a couple of others that have been suggested.

    The Technical Manual lists lots of ships and they, unfortunately, don't match the names we hear in the series. However, I again turn to the US Navy to point out that what gets authorized intitially may not match what gets built. The Navy's first carrier's were not born as carrrier's. The Langly was a coal tender. The first ship finished as a carrier, the Lexington, was not designed as a carrier. The class was originally to be the Constitution Class Battlecruiser. Somewhere burried in my papers, I have a list of the original names of the six ships. But plans changed. There was resistance to stealing the name of Constitution from Old Ironsides and the class was changed to Lexington with a possible Constitution later. Three ships were started as Battlecruisers, Lexington, Constellation, and Saratoga. Lexington and Saratoga were the furthest along when the design of the Battlecruiser was scrapped and the two ships were redesigned as Carriers (incidently the fastest two until post WWII). So if FJ had been writing about ship's authorized in the 1920's, he would have gotten the names and types all wrong. Similarly, he lists the authorization's for the five classes of ship in the Technical manual. I don't follow that the names and numbers went as listed. Evidence from production indicates that the NCC numbers varied and FJ does not list the Defiant.

    From my study of the US Navy and how it can apply to Starfleet, nothing can be taken as set in stone when dealing with authorizations and what happens in the end.

    That leaves FJ's Plans and Technical Manual a proper place in Trek without it ever contradicting what we see. The way I see it, the more confusing it is the more realistic it is.
     
  2. yotsuya

    yotsuya Captain Captain

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    I forgot to mention that I am very disappointed with Constellation in the new HD sfx. It looks just like Enterprise. I think they should have kept the alternate design.
     
  3. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Personally, I didn't mind that, because I felt the quality was comparably good. I bet I'm the one person that wished they'd had the cajones to change the registry to NCC-1710. :shifty:
     
  4. TIN_MAN

    TIN_MAN Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Agreed, at the very least they (the FX team) should have introduced some minor variations of their own, to make her look somewhat unigue.
    As for never seeing the original Connie's, aridas has done some interesting stuff along these lines...
    http://home.comcast.net/~aridas/Ent-Con-Val.jpg
     
  5. TIN_MAN

    TIN_MAN Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I'm 50/50 on that, in a way, I wish they had too, but it's just as well they didn't.
     
  6. Shaw

    Shaw Commodore Commodore

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    Well, the 33 inch model had far more screen time in The Cage than the 11 foot model (about 33.4 seconds of the 33 inch model to 13.5 seconds of the 11 foot model). And it was the 33 inch model that had the unique rear nacelle caps, the 11 foot model's rear nacelles were actually featureless.

    Amazingly both the Casimiro plans and the PL model kit got The Cage version of the 11 foot model wrong in that detail.

    By WNMHGB the screen time for the models was reversed (with the 33 inch model only getting 10.9 seconds).

    [​IMG]
    Click to play
    (MPEG4, 2 MB)​

    In all of TOS... ALL OF TOS, we only saw the registry numbers of two starships actually on the ships themselves: the Enterprise and the Constellation. Those are the only two numbers that are valid, concrete and undeniable, with everything else as speculation. One could make up any numbers you want for any of the other starships seen in TOS because they were all represented by stock footage of either the Enterprise or the Constellation.

    So if your going for a new number for the Constellation, you may as well renumber the Enterprise while you are at it. And in that case I vote for the new Enterprise number to be NTE-3120. :techman:
     
  7. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Agreed.

    I understand where you're coming from quite well - and this is the reason that I'm just as fine with them having not changed it - but I, personally, have a particular fondness for Matt Jefferies' justification/explanation of 17 referring to class number and 01 being a serial number - and 1710 seems highly preferable to the '1017' rearrangement of those decals which seems to purposefully fly in the face of that IMO logical system.

    One might argue that the different number was meant to suggest the ship was of a different, older class. However, to my thinking, the purpose of using the AMT kit, despite the differences between the kit and the 11-foot and 3-foot models, was to represent a ship of the same class albeit a slightly different configuration, and 1017 doesn't make a lot of sense in that regard.

    YMMV, of course. :)
     
  8. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

    I emailed Mike Okuda sometime before "The Doomsday Machine" aired, and he said that while they would've liked to have reproduced the old AMT model in CGI form (I offered up my undamaged Constellation for scanning, but he didn't bite), there just wasn't the time or budget for that sort of thing. The best they could do is change the name and number on a copy of the Enterprise model and then appropriately mangle it.

    Intent only gets you so far, especially when you wind up with glaring inconsistencies on screen that just won't go away. Besides, it's a nifty way to provide for a much more varied fleet without a lot of heavy lifting. Hence, the whole reason for, and the beauty of, the "older ship class" argument.

    To put it into clearer focus, the Constellation is not a Constitution class starship, she's a Bonhomme Richard class starship, which looks as similar to the uninitiated eye as a Kitty Hawk class aircraft carrier looks like a Nimitz class carrier.
     
  9. yotsuya

    yotsuya Captain Captain

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    Okay, this has been a pet peeve of mine since FASA labeled the TMP Enterprise the Enterprise Class. I point you to STVI and the plan Scotty looks at the clearly states Constitution Class.

    All the ships we speak of are Constitution Class. The variations are all subclasses, not different classes. And as this thread specifically refers to the FJ Plans, he specifically shows the USS Constitution, NCC 1700, which we all seem to agree fits the Achernar series, as Constitution Class.

    This is the same arguement that the USS John F Kennedy was a different class from the Kitty Hawk. She was not.

    Enterprise, Constitution, Achernar, Bonhomme Richard, Constellation, 1701-A are all Constitution Class Starships. They are the Premier ships of Starfleet. That's why, from the assumptions we are making, Constitution and Enterprise were upgraded so extensively, to keep them top of the line without having to build and entirely new ship. In looking at modern ships, the variation in the Nimitz class should make every third ship a new class, but it doesn't. They are all Nimitz class even though there's something like 40 years between the first and last ones. In Star Trek the Constitution Class rules for 40 years until the Excelsior prooves her class and takes over. Like the Constitution class, there is more than one variation of the Excelsior, but they are always referred to as Excelsior Class.

    Also, the class name always comes from the first ship. I was reading something on one of the Trek wiki's that put the registry/name link of Constitution NCC-1700 in doubt. They didn't even list Constitution as one of the ships. If it's call Constitution Class there was a Constitution to name the class after. If you change the name of the first ship, you change the name of the class. In my opintion, the onscreen use of NCC-1700 and two uses of Constitution Class make the name and number impossible to ignore.

    For starships, which have no air or water they need to move through that directly molds their design, the variations in a single class of ships could be huge. The amount of damage ships can receive and still be put back into service can lead to odd design variations. The availability of different equipment and the needs of the mission can lead to changes and enhancements as needed. This reminds me of the space Shuttle. While they may look the same, there were four distinct designs for the five shuttles. Only Discovery and Atlantis are identical.

    The same goes for the 747. Boeing has redesigned the plane several times. They are on their 5th production design, the 747-8, but they are all 747's, not completely different designs. Same goes for the Constitution Class, variations, not different classes.
     
  10. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

    I don't think the Navy deals with "subclasses", and the whole concept has always bugged me anyway. Just tends to muddy up the waters unnecessarily.

    As for the "Enterprise class" matter, I have no problem with it, if you take the stance that the refit resulted in the Enterprise becoming, essentially, a prototype, whereas the Enterprise-A, which has a very different engine layout, and some telltale markings on the underside of the secondary hull that the refit didn't, is an example of the standard, modern, configuration of a Constitution class starship.

    And getting back to the AMT ship not being a Constitution class ship, the proportions are just different enough, and slightly chunkier, to use it to fill in that gap between the Daedelus and the Constitution, as well as accounting for registries of 1017, 1371, 1305, etc., without having to picture someone in Starfleet HQ making these allocations via a dartboard or one of those bingo ball tumblers.
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2009
  11. BK613

    BK613 Commodore Commodore

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    Hey don't blame FASA's ST (1982-1989) for taking the label on the bridge simulator in TWOK (1981) and running with it:

    http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/4hpzpAQJKQsnCsLrEHARig?authkey=Gv1sRgCJzIs87lgfvDfQ&feat=directlink
     
  12. Whorfin

    Whorfin Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Hey gang, sorry I've been too busy to contribute, but I see everyone else is going full steam and doing a great job of it. Hopefully by next week I'll have more to contribute than a drive-by-post.

    +++++++++

    yotsuya,

    I believe the TMP ship was the Enterprise class, a total conversion so significant that it was pointless and misleading to retain the original class name, much as when a CL was converted to a CVE in WWII it became a new class (there are other examples). And its not a slip-up by the set designers (with the simulator plaque), the published TMP blueprints show it as the Enterprise class -- what the designers and Rodenberry intended. As to what Scotty is looking at in ST6, perhaps 1701-A is a very similar but functionally different class to the TMP Enterprise, perhaps originally having an experimental version of Transwarp drive (which would explain much of ST5), to which the original NCC-1700 was the first ship converted.
     
  13. Cary L. Brown

    Cary L. Brown Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Unfortunately, your argument fails due to chronology issues.

    First off... I'll briefly address the real meaning of "class" where ship designs are concerned. Basically, the sole reason for having "classes" of ships is for management purposes. Two ships of the same class have the same capabilities and functions... so you can assign Enterprise (pre-refit) or Yorktown (pre-refit) and either can do the same job in the same way. But suppose that you look at the pre-refit Yorktown and the post-refit Enterprise. The refit Enterprise has dramatically different capabilities. It's not "interchangeable" with the pre-refit design.

    So... logically, it HAS to be a "new class." And it is established in TOS (albeit in a somewhat roundabout fashion) that the TOS ship is Constitution class.

    Now... we know that the ship in TMP SHOULD have been a new class. Is there any evidence on-screen to support that it was? ABSOLUTELY! Go back and rewatch the opening to TWOK. The simulator is set up as a simulator of the Enterprise... and is clearly marked as "Enterprise Class."

    (Some folks have tried to counter that by saying that this was the name of the class... "I have Enterprise class at 10:30 on Wednesdays." You can take that as your preferred explanation if you like, but I find it... bemusing at best!)

    It was widely, and unambiguously, accepted that the TMP-and-later ship was "Enterprise class." Why "Enterprise class?" Because the first ship of any configuration is always called the "class ship," and it was unambiguously established by Roddenberry that he intended this to be the first ship of the new design type. (This is explicitly stated in his novelization of TMP.)

    It wasn't 'til ST-VI... MANY years later... that there was the print stating "Constitution class" which was seen on-screen. And there were tremendous groans all around at that.

    Personally, I prefer to take THAT as the "on-screen snafu" and ignore it. However, some folks have expanded on the idea a bit, as follows:

    They suppose that eventually, there was another "refit" type, visually similar to the Enterprise class but with different capabilities. By this point, there were no longer any original-configuration "Constitution-class" ships out there, so they named this new class "Constitution (II) Class." Again, the first ship using that design would have been named Constitution, and despite it looking like the 1701(r) externally, it had to have significantly different abilities and characteristics.

    Since the 1701-A was dramatically different internally (as demonstrated by set design) I have no major heartburn with that concept, though I prefer to just ignore the erroneous blueprint (largely because the print was utterly useless anyway... as if Scotty would need to look at an OUTSIDE PROFILE of the ship to think about where to look for missing boots???)
    That doesn't work, for the same basic reason... though it's a variation on the theme.

    A construction yard, dockyard, or repair facililty would require a different setup for a ship of one class as compared to a ship of another class. Refueling and reprovisioning would similarly be related to class. Remember... the main point isn't "what it looks like" but rather, the logistical "what can it do for us and what do we have to do for it" issues.

    A classic Constitution uses one type of nacelle, for instance. Replace that nacelle, and suddenly you have a new logistical support scheme required. You have to stock repair parts for the new nacelle... you have to have support mechanisms in place for the new hardware... and on and on. If it's not "interchangeable," it's not the same class.
    The differences are noticeable, but not significant. The various shuttle do effectively the same job, have the same payload capacity, use the same amount of fuel to get to orbit, can be serviced in the same facilities, and so forth. And yet, as far as I'm aware, they aren't referred to by a "class designation" anyway.
    747's aren't treated as naval "class ships" so this analogy doesn't apply anyway. The various models of different aircraft have different capabilities, different hardware, and so forth. The fact that they share some design features is why they retain the same family identification, of course, but they are not the same "class" in any sense.

    I've worked much more with Airbus than with Boeing, so I'll talk about the A340 family instead of the 747 family. But the following shows just some of the major differences... differences that dramatically differentiate the different aircraft, and mean that they are not "the same class" at all (in the sense we're discussing).

    [​IMG]

    Remember... "class" means "interchangeable from a management perspective."
     
  14. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I personally like to think that the Enterprise was the only Enterprise class ship (being the only Constitution class ship refit to those specs) and was followed afterward by the Constitution itself and the other ships of the class, which was refit to slightly less extensive refits, and which can explain why all the other ships of the class might be called Constitution class (refit) types.
     
  15. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral Admiral

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    Reminds me of the CV-65 Enterprise. Only aircraft carrier of her kind.
     
  16. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

    Bingo.

    Although, to pick a nit, that's CVN-65.

    Can't forget those two nuclear reactors.
     
  17. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Aye, that's what I was thinking of. ;)
     
  18. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral Admiral

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    I knew something didn't look right when I typed that.;)
     
  19. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

    To continue the example of the Enterprise (CVN-65), I've seen her listed as a Kitty Hawk class carrier occasionally, albeit erroneously.

    Apparently, the assumption is that they took a Kitty Hawk class carrier and added nuclear reactors (logical, if overly simplistic), without really appreciating that even if that's all they did, they still created a whole new ship class.
     
  20. BrookeStephen

    BrookeStephen Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    You have to see this:

    [​IMG]

    Apparently this guy was "bored" enough to attempt this (LOL), but he'd seen my work on YouTube and decided to try to overlap all the Franz Joseph deck plans using "After Effects"