This is something I’ve been working on for a while now. It’s a Federation ship from the late 24th century, but the original inspiration came from a John Eaves concept drawing for the Enterprise episode The Expanse. This is the drawing I’m talking about:
The ship on the left, ignore the funky looking doughnut thing.
My original intent was to do the ship as John has it drawn, in the Enterprise era, maybe something from the Romulan War. However, after starting it, I decided I instead wanted to do something from a couple centuries later, around the time of the Dominion War. So, I started on a second saucer with a raised center. I was going to do a “normal” secondary hull and a more Enterprise-esque layout. I messed up the saucer and had to start over, which was when I got the idea to combine my idea with the John Eaves design. So, this is what I’ve come up with so far:
More work on the Scout. I added some phasers, but not many. Scouts are typically fast and unarmed or lightly armed vessels. The idea is that they can outrun anything wanting to shoot at them. I’m going to add a single forward-firing torpedo and probe launcher, but I haven’t decided on the placement yet.
Then I finally got around to finishing the bussard collectors. Since we have no idea what’s really supposed to be inside these things other than lights behind frosted glass, I just did what I felt like. Then the blue part of the nacelle had to be rebuilt completely because it was a mess, so that’s what I’ve been doing. It wasn’t fun, but it was necessary and it’s a lot better now. I also added internals for that, but I think I have to play a bit with the transparency and glows in that section.
I didn’t feel the need to put the rest of the ship in just to show the grills I made for the pylon cut-outs. Besides, the nacelles just cast shadows on them.
Continuing on. I built the connector between the sphere and engineering section, which includes the nacelle pylons. This is how I’ve always wanted this part to look for this model, and now it does. The only thing left to do is add some grills in the cut-out sections and probably some windows. Now, this ship is considerably smaller than the conjectured scales I’ve seen for the “canon” Daedalus class, so the connector is only one deck. It’s basically a hallway. I’m likely going to model the entire interior for it, as it won’t take long and will be simple. Though, I’m probably going to have to do that with all of the interior spaces, as I’ll have to get close enough to the model that you’ll be able to tell if they’re just textures on a box. Speaking of textures, my 4K texture map for the nacelles holds up nicely at close range, though I knew it would. But, it’s always nice to see it actually happen. :)
I was going through folders the other day and I found this ship, so I decided to resume work on it. When I was working on it last year, I didn’t really know what I was doing. I’ve learned techniques for doing stuff in Lightwave since then, so I need to rebuild some parts. Up first was the nacelles. There were a lot of horrid errors and yucky parts, so much of the nacelle has been rebuilt. The nacelle body, bussard outside, end cap and RCS thrusters have been redone. The bussard innards, running lights and fins are parts from the old build, since I feel they look OK. Also, many of the materials have been tweaked. I haven’t done anything with the sphere or secondary hull, but expect big changes there as I progress forward.
I worked on a mixed bag of things today. I started on some signage for the ship. I realized that a 4-digit registry number is too low for what I have in mind for this ship, so I gave it a 5-digit number. This is a later ship in the class, not one that was built right after it was designed. Also, I’ve decided this ship is the USS Oberon, a Europa-class starship. Like the Luna-class, I figure all of the ships in this class are named after moons in the Sol system. In fact, since Europa and Oberon are names of Luna-class ships, it’s possible that at least some ships of this class were succeeded by Luna-class ships.
Aside from the name, I also added some pendants to the upper part of the nacelles. I had a pendant done for the underside, but I apparently deleted it and I can’t get it back, so I’ll have to redo that one. I was messing with the RCS thrusters and that must have been when I did that. I haven’t decided where on the nacelles I’m going to add the ship’s registry, though I’m leaning towards the middle of the pendant, like they did on the original Enterprise, the Defiant and Voyager. (and some of the background ships from First Contact) I also added some vents to the warp pylons and added the impulse engines. I was going to have the impulse engines be sunken into the saucer back, but then I realized that there are windows there and that won’t work, so I stuck them onto the back.
I’ve been wracking my brain trying to decided what I wanted to do about the navigational deflector area. I’ve not been happy with it and my previous attempt to build the dish itself did not go well. However, one of the reasons for posting work on the Internet is to get feedback. And, there are many times where feedback can get you past a problem you’re having, because people will often times suggest things you hadn’t thought of. So was the case with the deflector area. Michael “BorgMan” Bosscha suggested something so simple on Scifi-Meshes earlier that I could kick myself for not thinking of it myself:
“Hey, just a stray thought: what if you delete the forward section of the deflector housing and leave it at that notch? I was glancing over it a bit and I think it would look pretty cool”
I liked the idea instantly and went about implementing it. I was quite happy with the results, so I went about building the deflector itself. Here is the result:
Work continues. I was about to give up on this thing when I suddenly had a renewed interest in finishing it earlier today, so it looks like that will probably happen. ;)
Anywho, the last of the real pain in the butt stuff is done with the addition of the shuttlebay cut-out and doors. There was a lot of cleanup involved after that, but it’s done now. The rest of the build is mostly details, which suits me just fine. Aside from the bay, I also added some grid lines to the curve underneath that area and added some grooves to the upper and lower saucer. These will eventually hold greebles, which will represent sensors. I figure a ship like this would have a lot more visible sensors than a Constitution-class, since it mostly performs scientific duties and whatnot.
I redid the details on the bridge module. What I had before was too busy and hectic looking. I went back to a more simple design. The lines also aren’t as deep and wide as before. Also, I nixed one of the windows for the observation lounge.
I added windows today. I only planned to do some on the saucer rim, but then I felt the center section needed a few. Not many, though, as that would most likely be where the deuterium and water tanks, cargo bays, etc. would go. Remember, this isn’t a long range ship, so it wouldn’t need all of the space for that stuff that a big starship would. Also, since there clearly was one in Kirk’s quarters in Star Trek 6, I think it can be safely assumed that replicators were invented by the time this ship was launched. So, there’s not as much need for food storage, etc. I did add a few Enterprise refit style arboretum windows. But, that only makes sense as the ship does scientific missions and would need a botany section. Besides, plants are natural air purifiers.