03
Apr
09

NX Approval Model

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There is another…

There were two NX Enterprises; the one you saw on television, and then there was the approval model. It appeared very early on in print before the high resolution model was ready, and was never seen again.

The Paramount publicity machine had shifted into gear for the premiere of Star Trek Enterprise, long before the deluxe version of the of the first warp-driven Enterprise was ready to roll. Most folks never realized that the art department’s “foam core” proof of concept model acted as understudy for the super-high detail version still in drydock in Valencia, California. This CG concept model had been through battles to rival any that the fictional ship had been through during it’s four year television voyage. It had been volleyed back and forth between art department and producers. It had been pulled, stretched, cut, and pounded before it had been given a go for throttle-up, and shipped off to the CG facility where it would be built with extreme attention to detail.
The first appearance of the NX was this centerfold pullout rendered for TV Guide magazine.    untitled-158

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(Above and below) Two art department proof of concept images of the NX Enterprise reveal a brighter looking ship that gave the appearance of being slightly smaller than the model used for production. This is due to the production model’s larger windows. I prefer this look  because the smaller looking ship feels more vulnerable.

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(Below) The sliced and diced approval model. Once the bloody battles between art department and production were over, the high rez version of the ship could be built in relative peace.  

 

 

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(Below) The final production model.  The high resolution model was built with laser precision by master modeler Pierre Drolet at Foundation Imaging. Pierre is undoubtedly the top Light Wave modeler in Hollywood. His charming French accent has earned him the nickname “Chocolate Mousse” by all of us who revere him. Currently Pierre works with our gang over on BSG, creating amazing models that boggle the mind. His modeling of proto Cylons for “The Hutzel” on the upcoming Caprica defy imagination.

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Pierre did a remarkable job translating the approval model into a  high rez and versatile beauty that could withstand extreme paint scarpers. The low rez art department proof of concept model of the NX continued to see service as the big ship’s standin in previz throughout the four season run of Enterprise.


57 Responses to “NX Approval Model”


  1. 1 JNG
    April 3, 2009 at 2:27 pm

    I saved that TV Guide issue. Brings back memories of the nerd rage I heard when I tld people who asked about the new Enterprise that it bore a “certain resemblance” to an Akira-class starship. :)

    Is the final production model intentionally more bronze-ish in color or is the hull texture the same and lit differently in the images?

  2. 2 Joe
    April 3, 2009 at 2:38 pm

    Hey Doug,

    Are you able to go into any detail about the back and forth between the art dept. and the producers? What kinds of changes were haggled over?

  3. April 3, 2009 at 3:00 pm

    I am with JNG, I was in “CVS” and saw the T.V. Guide, I picked it up and I still have it.
    Its cool to see the two versions.

    Thanks!

  4. 4 Boris
    April 3, 2009 at 3:09 pm

    Could you go back a little and describe exactly how the concept model was being sliced and diced? Once the Akira was selected as the starting point, did you start modelling immediately, or were there concept sketches as well (presumably somewhat “deakirafying” the Akira)?

  5. 5 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 3:19 pm

    Yes, very observant! Herman liked the idea of a slightly bronze tint to the hull, which I rather liked. After it left our hands, the coloration was altered. I don’t know where that change originated.

    Believe it or not, the producers were of the mind to just use the Akira, lock stock and barrel. Our mission was to get it more towards the TOS ship, which I think we did pretty well.

    Being upset about a Federation starship bearing a resemblance to another ship of the line is kind of odd. The approach does not go against the grain. In fact it is entirely normal Every fed starship bears a resemblance to the Matt’s TOS ship. I always saw the task as not designing a new ship, but rather a “restyling” job. I drew my inspiration from the great industrial designer Raymond Lowey who took the turn of the century steam locomotive and restyled it into the streamliner.

  6. 6 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 3:24 pm

    Once we had our marching orders, I went directly to 3D. It’s much faster than drawing, and a lot more versatile. We were able to spin the ship on the fly, see what it looked like from every angle, and in any light condition. We could stretch the nacelles, shorten or taper the pylons, or increase the saucer diameter in minutes.

  7. April 3, 2009 at 3:43 pm

    It’s interesting to note that the NX-02 Columbia did get the silvery-white finish. See the difference: http://images2.wikia.nocookie.net/memoryalpha/en/images/f/f3/Enterpriseand_columbia.jpg

  8. 8 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 3:46 pm

    Hey Joe - Nearly every single detail was haggled over. Color, texture, plating… you name it. You’ll notice that the dome on the bridge was lit up originally. The producers thought the audience would mistake that for windows. I wanted a more porcelain, smooth finish. the producers wanted plating more like the TMP ship. I wanted lighter pylons, the producers wanted heavy pylons. But that is what the job is all about, focusing the ideas of the guys who ultimately take responsibilty for the show as a whole. If you want to have the last word, you should be a hobbyist or become a fine artist. Ultimately you end up with a melange of both your ideas. There is a lot of what I wanted in there, and I think it was a succesful collaboration

  9. 9 Joe
    April 3, 2009 at 4:23 pm

    Cool info. Thanks, Doug.

    Any chance of seeing some rejected designs? Or your faves that were rejected?
    Love the site, btw.

  10. April 3, 2009 at 4:29 pm

    I was one of those who didn’t like the resemblance to the Akira, though I got used to it pretty quickly once the series started. I agree it makes sense that the Akira should look like one of its predecessors in the same way the Ent-E and many others do.

    Maybe at the time I was annoyed at feeling like we were “cheated” out of the unusual new configuration I’d probably been expecting. I think I also felt a bit insulted that the producers thought we wouldn’t notice the similarities to the Akira. From their perspective it made sense to reuse a cool looking, little known background ship, but as a starship nerd I recognised the similarities straight away and dare I say, perhaps thought they were being a bit lazy by reusing an established design.

    But that was a long time ago. :) I really appreciate how much work you put into changing the design so it reflected the time period it originated from and it’s actually one of my favourite Trek ships. Come to think of it, I have a model of it on the shelve above my computer right now.

  11. 11 Boris
    April 3, 2009 at 4:46 pm

    Thanks for the info. On a related note, do you know who and for what reason came up with “NX class” and “NX-01″, instead of maintaining continuity with the established meaning of “NX” (registry prefix for experimental ships) and going with “Enterprise-class” and NX/NCC-?

  12. April 3, 2009 at 5:25 pm

    You know, the odd thing is that by now, it’s more the Akira that seems a bit out of place than the NX-01.

    I liked the “NX class” naming. I’m curious what kind of name it is though. Is it supposed to remind us of the experimental classification used in other Trek? Or is it part of a general scheme where ship types get 2-letter codes (like, for example, the idea to call the “Half-Saucer”/Intrepid an “NV class”).

    By the way, that shot from underneath, in front of a planet.. that’s pretty cool! Would’ve made an awesome ad for the new show :D

  13. April 3, 2009 at 5:58 pm

    Very nice. Love the NX. And I have all those collector TV Guide issues of any post TOS Trek, all versions issued.

    So you built the “foam-core” (LOL) version Doug, very nice mesh in-and-of-itself right there eh.

    I woulda figured making the windows larger would make the overall scale look smaller… TBT, I’m kinda hard-pressed to see much of a window size dif myself.

    BTW, are those round lights supposed to be portholes? On the ceiling and floors then…

    You recall the point count of yours and the final (or maybe the poly count as mesh were inaccurately weight measured back then)?

    Evermore, thanks fer sharin’!

    PLL,
    deg

  14. April 3, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    OK, couple more Qs…

    Looking that them side-by-side in PS, i see the ports size dif. Gotta say I do prefer the smaller ports.

    OK in addition to my what are those light, and how many points Q, was your mesh and maps a hand-off to Pierre for polishing off? Reason I ask is, they are sO sO similar, geo and maps. Way similar.

    Not sayin’ ya can’t clone what you see done already, as that is one of my own modeling strengths, but not sure why it would be done that way given the base work already done.

    Thanks dude, as you know I love me models! Oh BTW, LightWave is all one word, with both caps L and W. ;)

    LLP,
    deg

  15. 15 AdmNaismith
    April 3, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    When I first saw this in TV Guide, I never had a problem with the silhouette. I just though the amount of detail looked out of place on a ship that pre-dated the 1701. Not so much the CG rendering, but the sheer number of things there are to see on the outside of the hull.

    The Space Shuttle, for instance, has a very smooth skin, as do the other ships presented in the ‘Enterprise’ credits. I always figured this ship like this would be designed and built more simply than presented here.

    I really like the shot from below.

  16. April 3, 2009 at 6:58 pm

    I remember that TV Guide well, good comments and background info all around :)

  17. 17 Freak
    April 3, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    I was not a fan of this ship when I first saw it as the Akria is one of my favorite ships.
    But after watching Ent, it does grew on you.
    I agree with deg, the smaller windows does look better.

  18. 18 Jonathan Burke (TrekBBS' Praetor)
    April 3, 2009 at 7:05 pm

    Wow, Doug, thanks for posting this. I still have that TV Guide (and a lot more Trek-related TV Guides.) I remember looking at that ship and thinking - ‘what?’ And then I spent at least a good hour trying to figure out how flat it was, whether there was a secondary hull under there, and so on.

    Like jpearse said:

    “Maybe at the time I was annoyed at feeling like we were “cheated” out of the unusual new configuration I’d probably been expecting. I think I also felt a bit insulted that the producers thought we wouldn’t notice the similarities to the Akira.”

    I was one who felt somewhat ‘cheated’ at the design of the ship - at least initially. It was by no means a deal-breaker (although if not for you guys restyling the Akira into what we got it might have been - yikes.)

    But, it’s ultimately ike you said:

    “Being upset about a Federation starship bearing a resemblance to another ship of the line is kind of odd. The approach does not go against the grain. In fact it is entirely normal Every fed starship bears a resemblance to the Matt’s TOS ship. I always saw the task as not designing a new ship, but rather a “restyling” job.”

    Very true, and very eloquently put.

    Since that issue of TV Guide came out, the ship has grown on me a LOT and I really appreciate all the agonizing effort you went through trying to get her right on the behalf of the franchise and to appease production. I’d really love to hear about some of the production battles that I’m sure happened - although I’m also sure you’d rather not go too far into all that, and who can blame you? You have definitely taken you licks from the fandom - ironically coming out of it yourself. (Speaking of which, where’s a post about the old Officers’ Manual? :D )

    Now, no one stone me for saying this, but, despite the lack of detail, I rather like the approval model more than the finished model. I like the larger windows for the reason Doug specifies - it makes the ship seem smaller and more vulnerable. The bends in the curves of the saucer also feel a bit more subtle to me. I also quite like the lighter (possibly reflective) overall appearance, and more silverish color scheme. I like the twinge of bronze more than the full-on bronze. But I suppose that’s all personal preference, really.

    I’m curious, from the beginning was production insistent that the ship have the familiar blue glow on the engines and the deflector? I know a lot of people bemoaned the fact that a pre-TOS ship had that…

    Us fans… We’re sure an easy to please lot of nitpickers. ;)

  19. 19 Shik
    April 3, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    I was in Atlanta visiting my then-girlfriend when that TV Guide came out. I bought it & hemmed & hawwed over the design for a good time; she told me to “knock off the geeky shit”, then dumped me the next day.

    The next girlfriend loved my squeeing fanboy nature, though.

  20. 20 creativedistractions
    April 3, 2009 at 7:12 pm

    Wasn’t the bronze effect a homage to the Phoenix? The overall design has always been a beautiful one. I still sway towards the conspiracy theorists over this design’s resemblance to the Akira Class (you folks created a paradox you know), but otherwise, the motif inside and out, the spartan feel inside the ship was a good mix of military and NASA. i never get tired of checking out this girl…oh yeah and the Enterprise isn’t bad looking either. ;)

  21. 21 creativedistractions
    April 3, 2009 at 7:14 pm

    Hey Shik, I made sure to marry a geek…perfect harmony, although she can be worse than me. :)

  22. 22 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    Howdy Jpearse! I know how you feel, because I have a lot of emotions tied up in any Enterprise redesign too! Thanks for the kind word!

  23. 23 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 7:58 pm

    Howdy Joe - As I come across things, I post ‘em. Some stuff is on a drive that I am in the process of having rescued. I’ll keep my fingers crossed!

  24. 24 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 8:03 pm

    Harry - Honestly, NX is not a class, as you know, it designates an experimental design. Why the bosses named the ship class that are for reasons unknown. Traditionally It should be an Enterprise class ship, as the class name comes from the first ship of it’s kind built. If the leaders decided it stood for something else, they never made it known to us.

  25. 25 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 8:06 pm

    Deg - I had designed portholes in the floor and ceiling, and hoped we would get a chance to have those in a set. A great thing to have over your bed! When I get home I’ll find out the poly count for you.

  26. 26 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 8:09 pm

    Deg - I turned all my maps and the whole kitnkaboodle over to Pierre. My maps are very specific about what I wanted to see on the surface detail wise, but they were done extremely fast. Pierre took plenty of time with the final maps with extremely beautiful weathering. LW… I don’t know how to spell it, I only know how to drive it.

  27. 27 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 8:22 pm

    AdmNaismith - Although not as smooth skinned as the 1701, I think the NX is fairly clean. I don’t see it as being overly nernied in any way. I don’t like that look myself, and you won’t catch me greebling up the surface with hyper nooks and mega crannies like 2001, or Star Wars. I think that the ships ought to get cleaner as they evolve. If memory serves, the other ships in the credits, like the Space Shuttle and the Aero Star type ship, are meant for atmospheric flight, so a very smooth skin follows. Truthfully, if I had my own way, the NX would have been smooth like a porpoise, but the visual effects department wants detail to grab the light. At least I was able to avoid the Enterprise D four foot to six foot syndrome.

  28. 28 Syd Hughes
    April 3, 2009 at 8:29 pm

    Lawdy, that is just ridiculously cool. I think I am in love with the model — it just looks more ‘real’ than the CG version. The details just ‘pop’ a lot more. Oh, and the coloring is just perfect, too.

    Is it just me, or is the approval model’s primary hull a little closer to a perfect circle than the final version?

    Thank you so much for this! The NX really has become my favorite starship of all time, and just gets more so as I learn more about the design’s history.

  29. April 3, 2009 at 9:00 pm

    It’s actually these blog posts that make me appreciate the design more and more. Learning how you were more or less obliged to follow a certain form, but how you then really worked out all the details like the cargo doors, the shuttle drop bay, the EVA staging area, the “mobile base system” rails, and the way those catamarans were worked into the whole warp drive system.. that’s what makes this ship probably one of the most thought-out designs of the lot. In terms of technology, it’s a lot like “what if NASA had to build the Enterprise”.

    And while you didn’t manage to get the “viewscreen window” on the bridge, I see you did manage to sneak in those “The Cage”-era dark markings around the navigation lights on the saucer.. the docking hard-connect points or whatever.

  30. April 3, 2009 at 9:04 pm

    Considering those “DY-xxx” models from the same period and earlier, the precedent - whatever Messrs. Berman and Braga’s logic in choosing “NX” - was already there to be exploited.

    I do wish the extra viewports had been kept, but perhaps that can be remedied if/when NX-03 and -04 ever show up in a book or show.

  31. 31 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    Hi Jonathan! Thanks so much for your thoughts on the subject. Like I said a little earlier, I, like you, have a lot of emotions invested in ships called Enterprise, so I know exactly how you felt. As much as I love the TMP Enterprise, I remember being upset when I saw that the fronts of the nacelles did not have the roiling “bussard” collectors. True, I did take some lumps from my brothers and sisters in fandom, but it was entirely understandable. The hardest part was being “blamed” for the Akira connection, but ultimately I thought that it was a good choice of design to restyle. You can imagine my horror though when I was told that Akira would be IT without any change. It was thanks to Herman that we got a blessing on going ahead with the restyle. He fought for it.

    There are some touches on the approval model which were lost that I miss. Like the brighter look and larger ports, and yes, I thought the original had a little more subtle curves happening on the primary hull, but Pierre was remarkably faithful to the approval model. he did a beautiful job.

    As far as the blue glow on the warp nacelles… we resisted at first… but it’s true that Gene wanted that for the TOS ship back in ‘66 (they just couldn’t afford it), so we felt it was fulfilling an original dream.

    The nitpicking is really a positive thing. It comes from affection.

  32. 32 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 9:48 pm

    Hi Creative! Herman always favored the bronzy look, and I believe he wanted that for the interiors as well, although that did not happen. We did see it manifest itself with the E-E sets. I too love the NX interior sets. Spectacular job.

    I don’t see the paradox though. In the Trek universe, the Akira is a descendant of the NX Enterprise. In real life it’s the other way around.

  33. 33 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 9:50 pm

    Hi Syd! Thanks so much! I’ll have to pull out the final model and check the primary hull and see. I’ll let you know!

  34. 34 dougdrexler
    April 3, 2009 at 10:00 pm

    Hiya Harry! Mike Okuda and I really did spend a lot of time thrashing things out. I think Mike probably had more input into this starship than any other, due to our close friendship. Mike has an incredible turn of mind, and I respect him enormously. We would have loved to have done an NX Tech manual. It would have been a quantum leap beyond anything done previously.

    There are many “TOS” easter eggs in the design of the NX. If I had had my druthers, and if there had been a sixth season, I would have put the ship into drydock, and refit it with a familiar secondary hull. Makes me want to refit the CG model today.

  35. April 3, 2009 at 10:22 pm

    Makes me want to refit the CG model today.

    Do it. Do it. Do it. Do it. (in Ben Stiller voice from the Starsky & Hutch remake… He’s a huge Trekker BTW. I love him watching Arena on his iPod in Tropic Thunder, oh man I LMAO!) So yeah, I’d dig seein’ that too.

    Thanks for answerin’ my other Qs Doug! :)

    Me, I loved the NX straight off, and thought it was a great TOS E progenitor. My fav E 2nd only to Matt’s original.

    I lit up the nacelles on my TOS.5 E too, just very very subtly, as I was not wanting to “redesign” her at all, just tweak ‘er.

    LLP,
    deg

  36. April 3, 2009 at 10:43 pm

    This is due to the production model’s larger windows.

    Sorry to come back to this, but reading the original entry again, I’m a tad confused Doug. Did you mean to say the approval/concept model’s larger windows?

    It’s the production model that had the smaller windows, correct?

    And it’s the larger windows that make her look smaller, and as you said, more vulnerable. (Which BTW is a feeling I very much got with the show, the concept of man venturing forth for the first time out into space.)

    Thanks dude :)

    PLL.
    deg

    PS. Your blog and time is such a great great service to Trekkers dude. :D

  37. 37 Jonathan Burke (TrekBBS' Praetor)
    April 3, 2009 at 11:03 pm

    “True, I did take some lumps from my brothers and sisters in fandom, but it was entirely understandable. The hardest part was being “blamed” for the Akira connection, but ultimately I thought that it was a good choice of design to restyle. You can imagine my horror though when I was told that Akira would be IT without any change. It was thanks to Herman that we got a blessing on going ahead with the restyle. He fought for it.”

    And it’s for those reasons that I think a vast majority of us owe you an apology. For what it’s worth, I certainly apologize. I remember posting my fair share of ‘Whyyy, Doug?’ type posts, and I’m now embarrassed to admit it. :(

    This blog has been such a wonderful thing - you took a lot of crap from the fandom for being ‘responsible’ for the way the NX looked, but now we know the logical truth - that without having such talented and committed folks as you behind the scenes, we would have ended up with a literal retread of what came before. There are a lot of things that are said about detrimental factors that contributed to the Trek franchise being where it is now, but you have, for me at least, thoroughly proven that a lack of thought and commitment by you and your peers in the art department cannot be one of those factors. :D

    “As far as the blue glow on the warp nacelles… we resisted at first… but it’s true that Gene wanted that for the TOS ship back in ‘66 (they just couldn’t afford it), so we felt it was fulfilling an original dream.”

    I did not know that and I feel like a little less of a Trekkie for not knowing it. That’s cool.
    In the XBOX game ‘Star Trek Legacy’ they had the grilles on the TOS Enterprise glow bright white, with maybe the slightest hint of blue, and it looked really good. The rear end caps also glowed white, which I always as a kid thought they did anyway.

  38. 38 John N. Ritter
    April 3, 2009 at 11:39 pm

    I would like to see the Star Fleet Delta- the pictures on the web don’t do it justice.

    But as for the NX-01 I think you did a very good job. Yes, by all means, if you have the time, do a secondary hull.

    As to the TOS Easter Eggs, please list.

  39. 39 Thorsten Wieking
    April 3, 2009 at 11:51 pm

    Secondary hull refittet - indeed, I too would love to see that variation.

    Cheers
    Thorsten

  40. 40 Mike Okuda
    April 3, 2009 at 11:54 pm

    It should also be noted that Doug worked a LOT of unpaid hours during the design of the NX-01, because he took this job very, very seriously. He started meeting with production designer Herman Zimmerman several weeks before he was officially hired. Doug, who was already working a full-time job during this period, stayed up late every night to work at home on the ship. This went on for weeks, with Doug busting his hump to capture Herman’s vision and our producers’ wishes, melding them with his own sense of starship heritage. By the time Doug was actually on payroll, he and Herman had already gone through several design cycles, buying precious time to refine the ship during the inevitable last-minute frenzy of deadline.

    That’s dedication, but that’s what Doug brings to every project. And it earned him a place among such luminaries as Jefferies, Probert, Sternbach, Eaves, Taylor, Zimmerman, and James.

  41. April 4, 2009 at 12:01 am

    Incredible. I am still digesting all of the images, comparing this and that, but I can see the subtle differences in the “Study-NX” and the final version. One of the first things I noticed was the aft slope of the dorsal “box”. In your version it is more flat and looks to sharply curve off as it meets the saucer. In the final version it starts to gently roll off just behind the bridge module and then slides into the saucer. We also lost a few windows didn’t we. Of course the hull markings and certain details were shifted around. I also noticed that the RCS went from subtle and flush mounted to something more visible and bulky. Another interesting change is the forward curve at the base of the nacelle pylons. The finished version is not nearly as deep. It may be the lighting but the nacelles also look a bit shorter in the final as well. And the study version is also missing its “gas caps”! I also agree that the more bronze hull color looks better. I think it makes her look warm and inviting.

    But all and all, I think she turned out very well considering what you were asked to do and the time you were given. It was no small task. And Herman Zimmerman, bless him, sounds more and more like a hero. I have always though he was a genius (and an idol of mine) but your insights give me the impression that he cares about the integrity of the work. That is stellar in my book. And I have always felt that the work you folks did on “Enterprise” was brilliant. Next to the “Cardassian Monstrosity”, the NX-01 remains one of my favorites inside and out.

  42. 42 Jay
    April 4, 2009 at 12:02 am

    I have no doubt that, thanks to Doug’s involvement, the NX-01 ended up being much better that it would have ever been without his perspective. I’m sure he was often sailing against a strong wind from the producers’ offices, where I suspect they wouldn’t have known a spiked nacelle cap if they sat on one :)

  43. April 4, 2009 at 12:27 am

    It should also be noted that Doug worked a LOT of unpaid hours during the design of the NX-01, because he took this job very, very seriously. He started meeting with production designer Herman Zimmerman several weeks before he was officially hired. Doug, who was already working a full-time job during this period, stayed up late every night to work at home on the ship. This went on for weeks, with Doug busting his hump to capture Herman’s vision and our producers’ wishes, melding them with his own sense of starship heritage. By the time Doug was actually on payroll, he and Herman had already gone through several design cycles, buying precious time to refine the ship during the inevitable last-minute frenzy of deadline.

    That’s dedication, but that’s what Doug brings to every project. And it earned him a place among such luminaries as Jefferies, Probert, Sternbach, Eaves, Taylor, Zimmerman, and James.

    Indeed, here here, and I would add yourself to that list of Trek luminaries, Mike. :D

    Ah, for the pure love of Trek. The paycheck is well and grand no doubt, as one has to make a living, but the love of, there’s the source of all true inspiration and fortitude of dedication, IMO.

    Bravo gents! Bravo! :D

    PLL,
    deg

  44. April 4, 2009 at 12:43 am

    I warmed over to the Enterprise once I saw her in action. I have that issue if TV Guide hiding amongst my collectables. Thanks for sharing this.

  45. 45 David F
    April 4, 2009 at 2:00 am

    So Doug, are you responsible for having the P-38 turbo chargers there on the base of the booms?

    Gotta love the P-38!

  46. 46 dougdrexler
    April 4, 2009 at 2:36 am

    deg! That’s right… my boo boo… the concept model had the larger windows! Thanks budsky!

  47. 47 dougdrexler
    April 4, 2009 at 2:40 am

    What an honor, Mike! Thank you!

  48. 48 Vorus
    April 4, 2009 at 3:39 am

    I freely admit that I was one of the people that, in private and on the internet “blamed” you (Doug) for the Akira-ish design of the NX. I remember picking up that TV Guide and feeling instantly cheated at having the “new” Enterprise just be a “redressed Akira”.

    But after seeing it in action, it grew on me quite a bit, and I’ve become a defender of it, as much as I can. And knowing that it was you (And others) that saved us from just having a straight Akira (Dear GOD, Trekkies owe you guys BIG for that one!) makes me feel all the more guilty for hating it at first.

    So, for all the haters that have changed their ways, I thank you for a great ship, and all yout hard work. And thanks for this blog where we can get insider info, too!

  49. 49 Jim in NZ
    April 4, 2009 at 10:58 am

    Doug said “If I had had my druthers, and if there had been a sixth season, I would have put the ship into drydock, and refit it with a familiar secondary hull. Makes me want to refit the CG model today.”

    Don’t know if you’ve seen this, but over on the Trek BBS there’s a gentleman from Mexico who’s come up with an NX-redesign with a secondary hull. Here’s the link: http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=87194

  50. 50 dougdrexler
    April 4, 2009 at 11:24 am

    Howdy David - You know it! I’m a big P-38 fan. The twin boom Akira is indebted to this WWII fighter plane, and that was not lost on me.

  51. 51 dougdrexler
    April 4, 2009 at 11:34 am

    Thank you Vorus! Don’t feel bad, my friend. I thank you for your understanding and patience. I understand the emotions. They are borne of great affection!

  52. 52 Matt Boardman
    April 4, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    I suppose I was one of those people that never really understood why so many others disliked this design. I fell in love with it the moment I saw it. It has so many great shooting angles to it. The more that I look at it, the more I appreciate the homages to the Jefferies design of the original big “E”. She’s always reminded me a bit of a submarine, especially after seeing the interiors - sleek and tough!

  53. 53 Syd Hughes
    April 4, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    I keep coming back to this page just to look at those first few shots. The only thing I’d change would be to remove the “ENTERPRISE” from the ventral side - it is a bit much. Everything else, though — just wow. Love the coloring, the brightness, the windows, thinner/simpler nacelle struts, everything. The bulkier RCS quads on the production model are a nice touch, though.

  54. 54 daz1701
    April 4, 2009 at 10:40 pm

    Just wanted to say……great stuff. Thanks for sharing.

  55. 55 dougdrexler
    April 5, 2009 at 10:08 am

    Thanks Matt! No doubt that 3D in the art dept gave us so many good angles.

  56. 56 dougdrexler
    April 5, 2009 at 10:10 am

    Thank you daz!

  57. 57 Syd Hughes
    April 5, 2009 at 9:31 pm

    Jim: That NX-refit doesn’t look half bad! `course, I don’t see a way for the plasma to get from the core to the nacelles, unless they moved it into the secondary hull. Which would be lame ;)


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