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aridas wrote:
Those are beautiful renders up above, Jay. The one with the Ingram variant is especially cool.

I had to do that one, just had to. Hope you got the copy via email.


aridas wrote:
These latest images are fascinating in that they channel a problem I faced back in 1985 or so when Todd was doing Ingram and I was doing Grissom/Oberth. And frankly one reason I dropped the project. When you are in the TMP world of reactors residing in-hull, the separation of primary from secondary hull becomes more consequential than detaching the nacelles. It really brings the whole difference between Jefferies well-thought out scheme and everything that followed into fine focus. And for the life of me, when I was writing the FRS and other related publications, I never could figure out a reason why such a system would evolve to take the place of one that almost certainly had reactors in each nacelle AND in the primary and secondary hulls. (We know that from dialog and such in TOS*). With the TMP refit, you detach the saucer and the nacelles go too, thus avoiding the problem of their presumably great mass slowing down the saucer's escape. But with Oberth - and Clarke - the nacelles stay attached. Unless they can function at an extremely compromised level, powered by a separate impulse reactor, it doesn't make sense. But if there is a separate impulse reactor, you are back to a SCNN type of power distribution, which is not the way the LN-6X series nacelles supposedly worked.

A bit of a conundrum to keep you occupied. :D

* "Catspaw":
DESALLE: Engineering, stand by to divert all power systems to the outer hull. Prepare impulse engines for generation of maximum heat directed as ordered. Maybe we can't break it, but I'll bet you credits to navy beans we can put a dent in it.

...later...

CHEKOV: It was that electrical field we set up, Mister DeSalle, that dent you wanted. It's not much, but it is a start.
DESALLE: Keep it up, Mister Chekov. Channel the entire output of reactors one, two, and three into the relay stations. Whatever it is, it's starting to weaken.

​"By Any Other Name":
SPOCK: The final decision, of course, must be the captain's, but I believe we must have it ready for him. The Enterprise is propelled by matter-antimatter reactors. The barrier we must traverse is negative energy.

...later...

SPOCK: Mister Scott and I have prepared the means for the only logical alternative available to us.
KIRK: What alternative?
SPOCK: The barrier we must penetrate is composed of negative energy.
SCOTT: I have opened the control valves to the matter-antimatter nacelles. On your signal, I will flood them with positive energy.

"Day of the Dove"
SPOCK: Alien detected in the engineering section, near reactor number three.

And this one, which tells us the impuslse drive is powered by independent fusion reactors without using the word "reactor":

"Doomsday Machine"
KIRK: Spock, listen. Maybe Matt Decker didn't die for nothing. He had the right idea but not enough power to do it. Am I correct in assuming that a fusion explosion of ninety seven megatons will result if a starship impulse engine is overloaded?

Actually this is why I posted the images; because I see the same problem and fully agree with you. I can think of a couple more references to go with the ones you list above.

There is a way to do separation and leave the nacelles behind, which is have the separation plane on the deck connecting them to the primary hull, but leads to other problems - it would be tight getting the primary hull away. There's the added fact that I think the primary hull (with the nacelles) on the Clarke may have more mass than the secondary hull, which begs the question; what (if any) is the advantage of separating the ship?

We do know that post refit the Enterprise had a backup power system for the impulse drive should the ship need to separate. I have no issues with that, in fact I would insist on a backup system that could provide power in case they lost the main. Having the same set up on the Clarke is a no brainer. But would a backup reactor be able to power the warp nacelles as well? Humm. Would it need to? If that level of technology existed wouldn't all Starfleet vessels follow the Oberth and Clarke lines? We know the answer to that; they don't.

The problem is the nacelles.

This is where it may get into silly convoluted territory: the only way the separation system I've shown could work would be for the ship to separate as shown, and then eject the nacelles. My issue with this is the lack of efficiency, and the fact it's become convoluted. It really would become a one time deal with this type of ship. But it may be the only way.

As you say, it is something of a conundrum and one I am happy to share :lol:

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26 Mar 2016 06:48
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My £.02 worth:

I think it is perfectly arguable that those short form nacelles can run at warp one powered by fusion reactors. The fusion reactors, as you say, would be backup power sources for propulsion in case of separation. They can run the impulse and maneuvering thrusters, deflectors etc. OR the nacelles. It makes the Clarke-class a heavy scout, Darwin-on-steroids if it has this ability.

The question is, what if everything goes to hell and THOSE reactors go critical? This is where some of the things that have nagged me come into play. One thing that troubles me in the length of that flight deck. As I mentioned before, it puts it between the linear nacelles. It can be argued that whatever is going on in that flat connector deck ameliorates that, but you'd still be left with a saucer that, should you go full-lifeboat and break it and it alone loose, has a huge hangar dangling behind it. Impulse is also left behind, which is a necessary thing because of this ship's enginery layout.

I'd shorten the flight deck thus eliminating interference between it and the nacelles and it and the impulse below, then I'd add vent-like deiails at 45 degree intervals on the saucer (like those on the Grissom model). But smaller, less obvious. I'd repeat these vents (that are really maneuvering thrusters) on the underside. And I'd add graphic detailing (red striping, whatever) to signal that the ship can not only drop the secondary hull and fly Darwin-style under minimum power, but drop everything and just leave with the saucer and its smaller hangar, as a lifeboat under maneuvering thrusters. Instead of flying forward away from the wreckage, the lower thrusters would lift it above everything.

I really think that hangar is the fuctional problem. And it makes sense given that is mixes up what it does with propulsion. Connect them like on the TMP ship? Sure. But have one fully over the other, and fully inserted between the nacelles, and throwing off the saucer as a separate unit? It might not be the best idea functionally.

I'm being all "Menahga-style" harsh on you like Todd was on Mike in Starship Design. Don't take it the wrong way. It really is a beauty. But like any beauty, there will be tweaks that may improve it. It all comes down to what you, as the artist, can tolerate as violations of the vision you were trying to share.

EDIT:
Actually, you already have red striping on the upper and lower surfaces of the saucer exactly where I'd place the maneuvering thrusters.

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-Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia Query XVII, 1783

"...here we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it." -Thomas Jefferson, 1820


26 Mar 2016 10:45
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To be honest aridas, I think the whole design concept is flawed.

The Oberth really doesn't make sense does it? In fact the only way to rationalise that design is say that the Oberth is the "primary hull" with the "secondary hull" being some sort of mission pod (like an ACE nacelle, sensor unit, torpedo launcher...). In which case, the Oberth has no means of separation. The crew would get out using escape pods and shuttles, which given the size of that ship isn't a problem (although now I come to think about it, where are the shuttles kept?)

But, getting back on point, the whole saucer/platform/nacelle configuration just doesn't really work from the technical aspects of Trek. It may "look" cool (to some) but it screws-the-pooch when it comes to actually working Trek wise.

I can see some ways, design wise, that the problem could be solved - such as making the platform "U" shaped, but again you have to ask WHY you would need that sort of design. Nothing else like it is ever seen again on screen in Trek. Even the people designing the stuff for JJTrek have kept away from it. Design wise it's just... wrong.

I did realise most of this going into this project. I have never been a fan of the Oberth. Back in 1984 when I first saw the ship on the big screen I can remember saying "what the f###?" (and getting a clip round the ear, because you're not supposed to use words like when you're 13, lol). I can remember - I've even checked the old SFM Ingram thread of mine - back in 2008 I put a post up about wanting to do something about the Oberth, and try and make sense of it. Only took five/sixe years for me to get round to it :roll:

So in hindsight, yes, there are problems and flaws with the design. Some of that is intentionally, because this sort of frame is never seen again, I don't want it to be a major success. I'm not aiming for the successful failure that the Excelsior/Ingram ended up being, but rather the design not delivering what it could have done because of a flawed premise, but being good enough to still be used - just never repeated.

Altering the current hanger bay can't happen now. The moment I built the shield grid in it became locked to the shape and size it is. There is no way to change it, only replace it. I'm happy to leave that idea on the table (It's doable).

The size of the hanger bay on the Clarke irks me to be honest. But it is very practical, and practical was the name of the game with this. I wanted a bay that could fit two shuttles, and contain enough space to store them and allow other craft to land (as well as all the gear to maintain them. I may have overdone it). In some respects it may have been better to put that under the platform, and have the impulse deck above it. Scratch that, I vetoed that early on because of the Intermix shaft and not wanting to make it convoluted and complicated (one of the issues of the technology of the day is having the intermix shaft having to connect to the impulse engines - ok, I don't see that as an issue, but it's always fun working it all out, lol).

So, here's my plan: the sep lines on the nacelle pylons are gone. New sep lines will be added around the platform, where the forward and aft curve cut ins are. In this way, the platform with the impulse deck, hanger and saucer will be able to separate from the ship, leaving the secondary hull, dorsal interconnector, pylons and nacelles behind. I spent some time looking at it this afternoon, and figured a way to make it work. I'm far happier with it (hope you will be as well!).

aridas wrote:
I'd shorten the flight deck thus eliminating interference between it and the nacelles and it and the impulse below

I moved the platform (and hence the saucer and hanger deck) forward somewhat awhile back, and pushed the nacelles further back. Gave the nacelles just over 70% line of site to each other. Without rebuilding the hanger deck structure it's stuck as is. However, ( - always with the however Jay - ) every change on the mesh was followed by a save - a save to a new file number. The images have a version number on them, currently it's 1.0450. Which means I have 450 saves for this version of the Clarke. Somewhere there is a save file with the hanger bay before I built the shield grid in, all I need to do is find it (not that difficult actually), copy it from that file to the current one and with a few clicks here and there we could have a shorter hanger bay (of course the version number will change, but I'd prefer that - ending this on file 450 was freaky).

I wouldn't eliminate the hanger bay altogether, I want to keep as much space in the saucer as I can (why shouldn't the crew have decent living space?), but I can compromise and make it shorter, maybe chop 40-50% of it's length off. That could potentially increase the nacelle line of site to almost 80% (50% is what I need, so it's currently not a problem using the golden design rules).

aridas wrote:
I'd add vent-like deiails at 45 degree intervals on the saucer (like those on the Grissom model). But smaller, less obvious. I'd repeat these vents (that are really maneuvering thrusters) on the underside. And I'd add graphic detailing (red striping, whatever) to signal that the ship can not only drop the secondary hull and fly Darwin-style under minimum power, but drop everything and just leave with the saucer and its smaller hangar, as a lifeboat under maneuvering thrusters. Instead of flying forward away from the wreckage, the lower thrusters would lift it above everything.

The Clarke's saucer already has RCTs :D Dropping the nacelles from the separated section won't impact that. Those red stripes? Communication arrays. I, um, "borrowed" the idea and style from Todd's Ingram, just added extra with this being a sciency type craft. There is no "graphic detailing" on this mesh, everything you see is built in and physical ;) I suck at applying texture maps, it's easier for me to build stuff in, and do a basic texture for the hull. I added a set of emergency thrusters on the Ingram to help the saucer get away from the secondary hull with dispatch. I will do the same here.

aridas wrote:
I'm being all "Menahga-style" harsh on you like Todd was on Mike in Starship Design. Don't take it the wrong way.

Piff, your comments were not harsh at all, they were food for thought and helpful. I did ask after all. And don't forget what I said at the beginning of this thread: this one is for the FRS 8-) Your opinion matters greatly. I hope my ideas on how to address these issues sit well. Some are born out of the fact I don't want to do a massive rebuild (not that I'm being lazy :lol: , but I want to avoid that because time is a sensitive issue), some I think will work well.

aridas wrote:
It really is a beauty. But like any beauty, there will be tweaks that may improve it. It all comes down to what you, as the artist, can tolerate as violations of the vision you were trying to share.
I agree, this ship is far from perfect. I don't know if it's possible to make it perfect, but we can certainly make it better :D

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26 Mar 2016 14:58
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Update time!

I hit a design problem with the ship/mesh early on: nacelle hull clearance.

I know that the LN nacelles have to have full clearance between the inboard grills, I know this and chose to – well not ignore it, but more a case of try to come up with a way round it. The problem was the Shuttle Bay, either it had to go, or the nacelles had to change.

Why?

The LN series nacelles work by connecting to each other whilst at warp, via an energy field. This was something that Andy Probert came up with back when TMP was being made to justify why the nacelles on the refit E were where they were – and to suggest to the FX team the idea of having something visual going on between the nacelles when the E was at warp.

The physics of it all isn’t overly complicated (and as per a lot of things worked out in TMP true to what we know at the moment). The best explanation I’ve read as to what would happen to any structure between the nacelle inboard grills when the ship is at warp is that it would be flattened.

I knew all this, and I still went ahead – partially because I didn’t want to mess with the internal layout of the ship (as well as build the 3D model of the ship, I am also working on deck-by-deck plans as well), and partially because I thought I had a really neat way around the problem.

Both aridas and Probert have been quick to point out the flaw in my neat idea (in Probert’s case, he pointed out that I wasn’t the first to think of it). You can’t deflect that sort of energy without causing your ship to tear itself apart.

Of course, both aridas and Probert pointed out that I could just ignore them and carry on. They both like the ship as was (notice the was folks), but from a Treknobable POV it would never work. After all, it's fiction. But if I wanted to remain constant to the TMP ethos than changes need to be made. So I have been working on some changes which meant rebuilding the hanger from scratch, changing the platform and making changes to the nacelles and pylons as well (so not much, :lol: )

All my choice to do.

As was pointed out, the flaw could be lived with, and most peeps wouldn’t care. (Probert himself came up with the “50% line of sight rule” for nacelles, but he has qualified that to mean TNG nacelles, not the TMP ones - FYI, aridas you were right on that score!). The problem is, whilst most peeps wouldn’t care, I would.

I wanted to build a practical starship, one that ticks all the boxes. And I am somewhat of an OCD Perfectionist as well.

I admit I hit something of a mental brick wall when I realised just how much of the internal stuff was going to have to be changed, and nearly threw in the towel. Fortunately my other half is really good at kicking me up the backside when I feel sorry for myself. aridas is pretty good at it as well.

So some things have been changed to accommodate a new internal layout that fits with all the above;

Image Image Image Image

So what has changed?

The nacelles are further back than they used to be, by some 15 meters. The forward section of the platform has been reshaped in order to accommodate the nacelle move and all details on the platform have been redone, with some additions. The nacelles themselves have changed and have shorter grills on the outboard and inboard surfaces – that was the only physical change to the nacelles. The pylons have been moved up by a meter, as I have changed the emergency separation system and the nacelles no longer detach from the pylons. A brand new shuttle hanger has been built, with some detail I left off on the prior version (to save time – but screw it, I should have done it right the first time round). The two new dome structures on the platform are labs that were moved out of the saucer to accommodate the hanger bay change. I’ve also added a few additional sensors as well, which again I originally dropped for the sake of time;

Image

The hanger is somewhat truncated now, although it can still hold two shuttles comfortably. The shuttle repair/storage bay has been moved to the deck below the hanger – moving the hanger back means it is no longer over the intermix shaft (which is actually something of a bonus).


The end result? Full inboard grill clearance achieved;

Image Image

The clearance between the “field” the hanger bay is 43cm – which is enough. I have nothing overlapping that area at all now.

Am I happy?

Yes, because it was an annoying problem that I could have fixed earlier on in the process. It’s easy to go full on “fanboi” when doing this stuff, but I am better than that.

Massive, massive, thanks to aridas for all his help. It was invaluable (and why he is getting a 3D printed version of this baby, he’s helped sire it).

So, unless I find any mesh problems – the Clarke IS DONE, and LOCKED. Now on to the two shuttles, and time permitting anything else I can do on this (the cut-off date on the project is the 19 April. Beyond that date I can do no more to it until later in the year, so I am doing what I can whilst I can folks).


Oh yes, and thanks to Google deleting the old images on the thread, thought it would be an idea to repost these;

Image

Image


Comments and criticism welcome as always

More soon (in the shape of how the emergency separation system works now).

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03 Apr 2016 11:21
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New separation system.

I know some people won’t be happy with this, but I think this is a far more logical approach. It leaves the bulk of the ship behind, and yet still retains the impulse systems to allow for a fast getaway.

Image Image Image Image Image Image Image


Comments and criticism welcome as always

More soon (in the shape of schematics).

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04 Apr 2016 06:55
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And finally (ok, this is not the end, or the final thing, lol);

Image

Moving on to work on the shuttles, and time permitting maybe the shuttle bay as well. I have an image in mind I would like to be able to render.

Comments welcome as always.

More as and when :D

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04 Apr 2016 10:44
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Hi guys and gals,

For real life reasons that have come about much earlier than were originally planned, I am having to close this project down for the time being. I will come back and finish the shuttles off and do some nice renders of the Clarke.

Take care all of you.

More soon.

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11 Apr 2016 11:26
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Good luck and Godspeed, Jay! :)

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-Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia Query XVII, 1783

"...here we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it." -Thomas Jefferson, 1820


11 Apr 2016 12:06
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Long-time no post.

Ok, maybe not that long a time (given the gaps that have happened in the past). So here’s the thing that a couple people knew about, but I had no intention of milking on the forum by saying anything at the time; May 12 2016 I had major heart surgery (again) and had a heart rebuild (again) and new parts put in (again). This one was a biggie, biggie as in if it went wrong, well… I think you can guess.

No I’m not fully recovered. My rib cage is still healing (people forget that the way to a person’s heart surgically is through the rib cage, it has to be broken so they can get in), my chest hurts like a bitch where the wounds are healing (four chest drains this time. FOUR. Never again ok?). The main scar is massive, but I was never going to have a pretty chest after all the work I’ve had done.

Oh yes, and the nerve in my left arm got damaged (a risk you take with this surgery), so I have no feeling in my left arm or hand. They work… they move… but my arm may as well not be my own. Weird.

So, anyhow. Been thinking what to do with myself in-between follow up appointments and cardiac rehab, and thought it was high time to get back to this baby – I think I mentioned four build waves in prior posts with minor changes…

Image Image Image Image


Oh, and of course shuttles, and maybe a hanger bay. But shuttles are an ongoing colab with aridas at the moment, so more on that when we get something together that we (both) like ;)

I may also have a few “tweaks” in mind as well (more like fixes) for the Clarke before I move on to sister ships. But nothing major. I will restrain myself. We don’t want another never ending project like the Ingram :?

But anyhow, just thought I would “reactivate” this thread and kick things off with the idea of getting things finished.

Comments welcome as always, and as always: more as and when.




PS:
I wasn't going to lie about where I was and what was going on, but it's not the purpose of this thread. This is much as I'm going to say on it. I'm back. Things work. I am going to be alive for a long time to come. Let's all be stoic, believe me it helps (that and I arbore sympathy).

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13 Jun 2016 12:43
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Take care of yourself.


28 Aug 2016 17:28
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