The Excelsior - uncovering the design

Discussion in 'Trek Tech' started by yotsuya, Mar 28, 2021.

  1. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Here is a close-up of those gold rectangles. Do you see any thruster dots on the corners of the rectangles?

    [​IMG]

    And below is a close-up of the saucer rcs. Notice the thruster dots on the corners?

    [​IMG]

    Also if you pay attention to the origin point and angle of the phaser pulses you can tell they are not coming from the front ends. The first phaser volley (above) intersects with where the gold rectangles would be. The second phaser volley intersects a little higher with the blue side piece that look suspiciously like phaser ball turrets.

    [​IMG]

    I'm not sure how you can argue that those gold rectangles on the rollbar are RCS thrusters when they lack the thruster part.
     
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  2. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

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    I was about to cite these screen caps and you beat me to it, thank you. The beams are clearly NOT coming from the front nozzle. Additionally, in that very same scene, as the Reliant passes laterally across Enterprise’s port side, there’s literally no physical way the fore/aft fixed phaser muzzles could make a 90-degree turn as it cuts into the secondary hull. The only way it could work is if those were additional phaser emitters on swivels.

    I honestly cannot fathom why this is still even being debated. The facts are unimpeachable.
     
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  3. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Are those Individual Ball Turrets on top of the Mega Phasers?

    That could easily explain the "Off-Axis" Mega Phaser blasts.
     
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  4. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

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    Yes, I believe that’s exactly what they are, for exactly the reason you mentioned.
     
  5. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yeah, I think they are ball turrets for the rollbar phasers.
     
  6. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The Mega Phasers looks like a LARGER Caliber than the typical Phaser Ball Turrets.
     
  7. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yeah they do. The ball turrets on the rollbar are about the same size as the saucer ball turrets but have the same color as the forward/aft caps so they probably can handle a different power output. The front/aft caps however have only that straight forward or back firing arc so I'm wondering what type of enemy it was meant to fire against? Wide, slow moving or static targets?

    Still a bit funny that neither ship ever got to fire full power phasers at each other though.
     
  8. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

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    That, or the mega's have a longer range and can reach out a lot farther in front and behind than normal phaser banks, which are then repurposed for use as a point-defense system for up-close-and-personal combat engagement.

    I remember back in the ancient times, when Reliant was first seen, some folks out there called it a scientific research vessel or somesuch, simply because they were running missions for Genesis. That thing was and always will be a formidable battlewagon. Close to the same number of phaser banks to the Connie, twice the photorp launchers and the mega phasers that literally no other contemporary of its time seems to have. It honestly should have mopped the floor with the Enterprise with her shields down and left her a burning hulk. I chalk the failure to attain that goal strictly up to Khan's crew's inexperience with late-23rd century starship operations. They were used to pre-refit Connie layouts and systems, not ships like Reliant, and they just simply didn't have enough time with the simulators to familiarize themselves with the upgrades. Kirk & co. got lucky, straight-up.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2022
  9. yotsuya

    yotsuya Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    They are also not coming from the balls you are identifying as phasers.
    This image looks a lot like the following image where it very specifically is the ends.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    This image I'll give you as it does look close, but if you follow it back it isn't the ball, it is the base of the fin. So it doesn't really prove your point.

    So. The thruster part is hardly visible in other places. The TMP Refit, they were all lit and marked. The Excelsior it is hit or miss if they are lit or not. Reliant aren't lit. For Ent D there isn't even a mark on the RCS on the 6 foot as it was originally finished.

    [​IMG]
    5 RCS on each side and not a single mark for a thruster. This model was built just 6 years later. Same with the Constellation Class. It only had 4 RCS, no thruster marks. So thruster marks are not required.

    My judgement is based on the markings and the FX and what was done contemporaneously. The FX in TWOK don't specifically point to the small ball. It is close, but it could just as easily be the tip. Especially when the tip is very specifically used later in the film. Both RCS and Phasers use that type of marking, a gold box with red pinstripe. Not all RCS are lit or show a thruster. And the design of the Miranda class makes an RCS placement in that location make sense. It is roughly the same placement as the forward upper RCS on the saucer. So the placement fits, the marking fits, and the FX fit. Also, all the phasers ball are white where these are not.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2022
  10. Unicron

    Unicron Boss Monster Mod Moderator

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    It's interesting that, in looking at the battle footage today, it seems more plausible to me that these raised details are meant to be phaser banks (even though they're not easily visible in the movie context) and that the opening phaser volley comes from them. I always assumed it was meant to come from the bigger nozzles and the beams were just slightly off in position, but maybe that's not the case. It would certainly make sense to me in terms of the arc these lateral phasers would help cover, and the idea that the Miranda and some of its variations are used as frigates with considerable firepower for tactical support. Just my 2 cents. :)



    It reminds me of how, according to Alex Jaeger's description of the Akira, it has a lot of torpedo tubes (up to 17) and several of those are lateral mounts that can fire sideways. It's meant to be a modern battle wagon in his view, and the weapons cover as many angles as they can.
     
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  11. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

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    And that's precisely why the Akira is one of my all-time favorite Trek designs! :D

    Sadly, most games in which I've played her (SFC, STO, Armada I & II), it has been totally nerfed out. Something like that really has no business being a Starfleet vessel, which is why I love it all the more.
     
  12. yotsuya

    yotsuya Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Photon torpedoes can be aimed to hit a target in any direction. There is no need for torpedo tubes in all directions. Miranda and Excelsior having 2 forward and 2 aft is a bit of overkill. Useful in close combat, but not sufficiently useful that they are found on all classes. The Galaxy class traded multiple tubes for faster firing rate.
     
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  13. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Seems like the Galaxy Class developed multiple chambers (revolver style) or a proper fast loading magazine to allow for quick rapid launch in succession.

    It feels like the older Miranda & Excelsior versions of Dual Torpedo tube was to make up for crappier loading mechanisms to compensate for slow firing speeds of individiual tubes.

    I remember seeing the loading mechanisms into the tube being a conveyer belt of some sort to role the tube into the launcher for the older style Torpedo Tubes.
     
  14. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

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    We saw torpedo loading systems in TWOK, TUC and ST:ENT. The latter, ironically the oldest by at least 100 years, seemed the most efficient. :lol:
     
  15. yotsuya

    yotsuya Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Well, sometimes engineers come up with some nifty new thing that they think is great that isn't as good as the old thing.
     
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  16. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    And you look at modern tanks, many of them have "Auto Loaders".

    Yet the M1 Abrams has a dedicated crew member loading it instead of an auto loader.

    Sometimes simpler is better.
     
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  17. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Admiral Premium Member

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    if it ain't broke, don't fix it! ;)

    Ironically, this is a big part of why the Excelsior project was considered a "failure". To quote Scotty, "the more they overthink the plumbing, the easier it is to stop up the drain".

    They should put that on Excelsior's dedication plaque. :D
     
  18. blssdwlf

    blssdwlf Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    In my reply I specified that the first volley from Reliant came from the gold rectangular area and the second volley was higher and appeared to connect to the blue side piece that look like there are phaser ball turrets.

    In your image below, you can see that the phaser doesn't intersect with the forward cap and the burst effects are to the right and behind the forward cap.
    Also in your image below in the Mutara Nebula battle notice that when the forward caps are firing they have a constant glow at the tip. The tip doesn't glow in the surprise attack.
    I wrote blue side piece but close enough. It does prove that phasers fire either from those rectangles or very close to them which reduces the possibility that they are RCS thrusters (on top of them lacking the thruster detail.)

    You know what else was done contemporaneously? The markings on the Reliant since it is the same ship :) The saucer and nacelle RCS markings all have the thruster detail but the rectangles next to the rollbar phasers do not. If they were really rollbar thrusters it wouldn't have been difficult to put 4 dots on each rectangle so there just isn't much evidence to suggest that they are RCS thrusters.


    I remember when the Reliant was attributed to the fan-based "Avenger" class. Personally, I think the Reliant's megaphasers are more close-range than long-range as she lacks the long-range sensor dish for long-range targeting. We really don't know what the two ships' power generation capabilities but the Reliant does appear to have more torpedo tubes.

    IMHO, Khan lost because of his personal need to make sure Kirk knew who was taking vengeance upon him. Khan stated that his opening attack was to cripple the Enterprise. If Khan fired full power phasers at point-blank range the Enterprise would've been destroyed and the movie would've been over.

    Instead, the Reliant's warp and torpedo controls are taken out when the shields went down with the few shots from Enterprise, effectively limiting her to impulse-powered movement and attacks. The Enterprise's damage is much more severe where her bypassed-partial-main-power is less than Reliant's impulse power. Kirk got lucky in that they were able to capitalize on the Mutara Nebula to negate Reliant's power and mobility advantage.

    I wonder what the torpedo loader automation looked like in "The Search for Spock" as there were no torpedo crews.
     
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  19. KamenRiderBlade

    KamenRiderBlade Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Probably a bunch of crude Robotic Arms that were bolted to floor railing that moved the Torpedoes from their shelves onto the loaders.
     
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  20. yotsuya

    yotsuya Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    So, are you now saying that the gold rectangles there are the phasers? I'm now very confused. I thought you were saying the two balls on the ridge were the phasers and the gold rectangles were just markings.

    If you watch the FX from both scenes, the FX appear slightly different. It is possible two different teams did those two shots. That would explain the inconsistencies.

    I could understand if they had painted that area by the pattern that governed the paired ball phaser banks on all other ships (Enterprise, Excelsior, Stargazer), but they didn't. they are painted the darker blue-gray and the gold markings are separated. if they butted up to the ridge and if the phaser ball was white like all the others, I would be forced to agree with you. But they aren't so what I see is an RCS panel. We have several different types on the various ships. The saucer edge on Enterprise, Reliant, and Excelsior. The Warp nacelle fin on Enterprise, Reliant, and Excelsior. The saucer edge on Stargazer (no thrusters). The ones around the main deflector on Enterprise. And then the ones on the Ent D (again no thrusters). Plus we can imagine that the TOS Enterprise had RCS thrusters of some sort and they were not marked or in any way visible. and from the size, if those gold rectangles are thrusters as I believe, they would have one thruster on each rectangle. They may have forgotten to add them or those rectangles were just random decorations as some of the various markings are. But the placement fits the RCS placement pattern.

    I am insistent because I believe that is what they are. I don't agree with your view that they must indicate phasers. I'm also not insisting that you agree with me, but you aren't providing evidence to convince me. The whole FX sequence when Reliant first attacks has a single phaser striking the Enterprise. That is more consistent with the one mega phaser. So is the heavy damage. I think the pieces as a whole all point to Khan using the mega phasers and the photon torpedoes, not standard phaser banks. I just don't think those features on the fin on the corner of the rollbar are phasers. They are redundant to the port/starboard saucer phasers and the fore/aft mega phasers. I can't say the designers/builders didn't intend them to be phasers or not. But the way the ship was painted is a strong indicator to me that they are NOT phasers and the gold rectangles are RCS markings. You may disagree if you like, but you have yet to show anything that would convince me solidly.

    Just like the odd source of several of the phaser beams coming from the Lakota does not persuade me that there should actually be phasers in those locations. FX are not always reliable. It depends on who did it and how accurate they wanted to be.

    My analysis of the Excelsior model has led me to the conclusion that it has 4 photon torpedo tubes, 10 paired banks of phasers (top and bottom of the saucer), one quad bank of phasers on the bottom of the secondary hull, and potentially 6 more phasers more along the lines of the mega phaser. And nothing changed during the two modifications of the model.