Return to CGI, Pt. 2

If anyone calling them self a Trekkie sees these images and doesn’t know what ship I’m doing, I’m going to have to ask you to turn in your Trekkie card. 😉



The rear end of the engineering section is based on the one from TOS. I did it as close to the schematic drawings and the handful of pics of the incomplete model as I could, with a bit of embellishment of my own thrown in. That’s been the most time consuming part of this build so far.


8 thoughts on “Return to CGI, Pt. 2

    • I don’t know exactly, last year or the year before. It works with my operating system, that’s why I switched. I use desktop Linux and there are only a couple full CGI packages that work with Linux. There’s Modo, which costs too much, and there’s Blender, which is free. Plus, it’s really powerful software. There are some things that work better in it than they did in Lightwave, but there were still some things that were better in Lightwave. (both are light years better than Truespace) Two things I like better are that it’s all one program, as opposed to a separate modeler and renderer for Lightwave, and I like the render engine much better than the one in Lightwave. Cycles is just a fantastic render engine. Plus, Blender can render using my GPU, which is faster than my CPU. I don’t know if they ever added that feature to Lightwave.

      • I have been meaning to learn how to use it for years. I like the fact its cross platform, I have linux and windows machines. My old version of c4d does work i linux under wine. I have watched blender get better for a few years, its just a matter a of setting aside time to sit down and learn. A fellow 3d model freind uses truespace on his old xp machine. Keep up the good work.

  1. Hi EG180, I’ll hazard a guess…is it a K’t’inga? Just kidding, I know it’s a Constitution Class. I really like the way you can get complex curves in your models (I’m having real difficulty with that in Sketchup). Look forward to seeing this one rendered.
    And on a side note I designed a Lightsaber based on the engine nacelle of the TOS version of this ship.

    • One time, I took a complete saucer from the TOS Enterprise and some CGI lightsabers to make the engineering section and nacelles. It was weird.

      Specifically, this is the Constitution class from the TV series that never happened in the 1970s, Star Trek: Phase II. They were in full swing on production for the series when the studio switched tracks for various reasons and decided to do a movie instead. Most of the sets were converted for the film, but none of the models were used except for, ironically, the Klingon ship, which was heavily modified to become the K’t’inga class. The Enterprise model that was about 75% complete never got finished and the design was altered for the film. Still, you can see from the design that it was the starting point for the movie model, since most of Matt Jefferies’ changes to the model were carried over, but they added a lot of detail to accommodate a 40-foot movie screen, as opposed to a much smaller TV screen. Anyway, even though the show was never made, except for the pilot episode that was turned into the Motion Picture, it’s an interesting slice of Star Trek history. A few of the stories were modified for TNG and the characters of Will Riker and Deanna Troi are clearly inspired by Will Decker and Ilia.

      • You can definitely see the influence in the sensor array dish on the front of the engineering hull. I liked the old “satellite” dish but the lit concave array looked great. I also liked the way the engine pylons flared at the junction with the nacelles. And regarding your Saber hulled Enterprise that doesn’t sound weird, you should check out the video for the song “StarTrekkin'” by the group called The Firm (IIRC it features an Enterprise made from sausages and bacon rashers!)

    • I actually haven’t built the deflector yet, that’s just an empty hole. However, you are correct that many of the main differences in the ship were from the Jefferies design, even though he’s not credited at all in the movie redesign. He decided to leave the saucer mainly alone and add a second turbolift to the bridge. He changed the shape of the main connecting pylon and added a weapons array to the bottom, described in the series bible as the main phaser, later to be the photon torpedo launchers. He tapered the warp pylons and changed their position on the hull, and flattened out the sides of the engine nacelles. And, of course, he put the deflector back into the hull.

      Now, all of this was carried over to the TMP ship. Art Director Richard Taylor and concept artist Andrew Probert were given Jefferies’ drawings by Gene Roddenberry and instructed to use them as a starting point. Yet, Taylor and Probert are usually the ones credited for the redesign. But, that’s what happens with Hollywood. Often, the people who do things don’t get the credit they deserve. Brick Price, who was contracted to build the Enterprise and other models for the show wound up making a lot of props for the movie and was never credited.

      • This is great info, I wish I had read up more on it before I did the write-up for my blog post now. And I totally get what you are saying about designers not getting credit they deserve, I know of two individuals (who I won’t name) tried to lay claim to designing Darth Vader’s Lightsaber recently when in fact the two main Gentlemen who did design it were called John Mollo and John Stears. It’s amazing what a little research can discover.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s