Scout Refit, Pt. 01

I’m a little frustrated/fed up with working on the Romulan War Destroyer. I’m tempted to just jettison the thing and start over, maybe even make it not Romulan War Era. However, I haven’t decided anything just yet. So, I decided instead to work on something else.

I’ve started on a refit version of my Scout. This is to bring the ship in line with the TMP-era tech. Unlike the Enterprise “refit,” I didn’t want the hull contours and whatnot to change, which would make the ship look like a brand new model, like the Enterprise does. So, I went back into my Scout WIP saves and found my earlier versions of the saucer and secondary hull. This way, the ship will literally be the exact same design as the TOS version, but updated. I redid the shuttlebay area to make it more TMP-style and then set about adding a bunch of grid lines to the saucer and secondary hull. Of course, the nacelle pylons and nacelles had to be redone completely, but Matt Jefferies’ design notes suggested that these parts could be replaced easily. For the nacelles, I wanted to go with a TMP-era look, but not exactly the TMP design. So, I did my own design for the front part, where the back part is based on the TMP Enterprise’s nacelles. Anywho, this is where I’m at so far:

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Romulan War Destroyer, Pt. 04

More stuff. I added the bridge module (the dome will be added later) and some docking ports last night, I just didn’t post them. “Alien” was on Encore, so I listened to that while I was working, even though I have it on DVD. ;) Today, I did the line treatment to the bridge and added the navigational deflector.

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Now, to some people, the bridge and docking ports may seem a little “tall.” That’s because they’re realistically scaled. As I’ve said a whole lot of times in the past, scaling issues are a pet peeve with me. For ships built out of plastic, scaling issues are going to happen. It’s a fact. For example, the original Enterprise is full of them. Originally, the bridge was taller and there was only one line of windows in the teardrop and saucer edge. However, when they changed the ship for the series version, they shortened the bridge and added second lines of windows to those structures. With the ship scaled to its fictional measurements, the series bridge minus the dome is only 2.5 meters tall, which doesn’t match the internal sets. Likewise, there really isn’t enough room for two full-sized decks in the teardrop or saucer edge. But, that was the 1960s and, like I said, plastic models.

However, these things still happen. Even on a well thought out and designed ship like the NX-01, there are some iffy measurements. One great example is the docking ports. Scaled to its fictional length of 225 meters long, the docking port hatches, including the frames, are only 1.5 meters tall. As we saw in the episode “Vox Sola,” the hatch itself isn’t even that large. While it varies by country, the average height for men in the US and UK at present is 177.6 centimeters, which is 1.776 meters. I’m closer to 1.91 meters tall, and there are a lot of taller people than me out there. So, most people would have to really stoop to get through a less than 1.5 meter opening.

In my humble opinion, there’s just no excuse for scaling issues in CGI. Build everything at 1:1 scale and you’ll be fine. So, for my ships from this era, I’ve increased the size of the ports quite a bit. The door frame is 2.4 meters tall, the opening itself is 2.0716 meters tall. While some taller people will still have to stoop, at least not all of us will. (note: this series supposedly takes place 150 or so years in the future and average height will be taller by then, but that’s beside the point)

Also, I avoided putting docking ports on the saucer edge because I didn’t like how they looked. The port structure is nearly as tall as the saucer edge, leaving little room for an indentation.

Romulan War Destroyer, Pt. 03

Work continues on the nacelles and pylons. I got all of the grids and whatnot in both parts, which means I should be mostly done adding lines to the ship. I may add some on the bridge module, but that will be small compared to this. I also added the groove for the nacelle components. I went with only putting that on the inside. Since this is a warship, you’d probably want more heavily armored nacelles, like the Defiant on DS9 had. In fact, this ship’s small size and role in the fleet is very similar to the Defiant.

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Romulan War Destroyer, Pt. 02

The beginnings of the nacelles and pylons are in place.

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Presently, this thing is 98.55 meters long, 71.8 meters wide and 21 meters tall. I don’t expect the length or width to change much from here on out, but the height will definitely change when I add the bridge.