Update 2020 (11)

•August 19, 2020 • Leave a Comment


I am going to end up adding this to my ‘Lesser Known’ series of Federation ships.

Mako Class

Mesh built in Wings3D
Textures created in Photoshop (CS5)
Rendered in 3D Max

Update 2020 (10)

•August 13, 2020 • 2 Comments

Still here 🙂

Put my last project on hold to try and finish a very old one. I reopened my Aquila model to see if I could finally finish it. I thought it just needed some texture tweaks and I would be done.

Yeah… No.

I threw away all the textures and started over. I had over paneled the originals and had these ridiculous specular maps. I just did not like it anymore. Thought I had the source PSD files for all the line elements to make it ‘easy’.

Yeah… No.

The engine source file was still around, oddly, so that was a tweak of about 5 minutes. Had to redraw everything else. So, of course, I changed everything.

With that, I then decided to remodel the bridge upper deck section. I decided the shuttle deck would not be on top and put it on the bottom. I added to fusion rectors and a bunch of giga-joule capacitors to the upper deck (explained below).

Still more to do. Images are single pass so illuminated elements are over saturated. No bump maps yet.

Federation Starship
Federation Starship
Federation Starship

This is a Mako class battle cruiser. The Aquila is 1 of 8 built of the class. The design was one of a few proposed for purpose built combat ships to counter Dominion incursions. Like the Defiant class, it suffered from a number of issues that ultimately limited the production to 8.

It deploys a unique, high energy, pulse PHASER system. The system has dedicated port/starboard fusion reactors that power the weapons. Each bank can target multiple targets deriving power from capacitor banks allowing for up to 6 individual targets per array. This system ultimately proved difficult to maintain and needed further time to develop. The Defiant class was able to overcome it’s issues and was ultimately selected.

Update 2020 (9)

•June 26, 2020 • 3 Comments

Completed the newly named Shackleton class explorer. This is the Shirase after the Japanese Antarctic explorer. One of 8 ships attached to the Far Horizon class mega star ship for my own Trek ‘would love to see’ series.

More on that some time soon.


Original design

Update 2020 (8)

•June 14, 2020 • 1 Comment

I was looking at my gallery and many of the images are in 800×600 format which was the standard resolution for the day. That was soooooooooo long ago. Sadly, a few of the models are lost. I did come across the Sparta (below) and it was still in the original rigging I last used.

I’ve rendered it out at a much higher resolution and was impressed I had put so much effort into the textures. This model has an interior as well. I used a better background for it as well (planet by me).

I updated my gallery to reflect this.

Sparta Class Starship

Update 2020 (7)

•June 11, 2020 • Leave a Comment

I went ahead and tried to upscale the secondary engineering / science hull, as you can see, I scrapped it. It just looked odd and too much like some designs out there where folks just threw on extra Connie hulls.

Some texture updates. Just a few final bits and then bump maps. Should be done soon (har..har).

TOS Era Cruiser

Update 2020 (6)

•June 9, 2020 • 1 Comment

Returned to working on the Himlico as part of my lesser known series of ships. I made a few slight changes to the warp engine layout as they were too close into the primary engineering section.

The secondary engineering ‘pod’ looks a little odd but is to the correct scale when compared to a constitution class (which the back story is that it is related).

Most of the big maps are done. The nacelles and all the bump maps need to be completed.

I noticed that I did not build out the two hanger decks. I always build them and then never use them. I once did on a SFM ship I did for Masao but never since. Lots of time saved.

Himlico Class

Commentary 2020.01 – An Endeavour

•May 31, 2020 • 1 Comment

Despise or admire him? Crazy man or visionary? Some say the former but I say the later. Elon Musk is a true pioneer and has put the US back into a preeminent leadership position in space exploration.

I watched the launch yesterday (5/30/2020) and was beyond thrilled with the perfect launch and the first stage recovery. My wife, who thinks space is a waste of money was probably more excited and cried through the hole thing. She is a free market champion and saw this as our future (and to be honest she was looking for something inspiring from the current news). She called our granddaughter and video chatted with her during the whole thing from 30 minutes before launch through stage-2 separation.

SpaceX is going to put humans on Mars and beyond. China and Russia want the moon for military dominance and economic greed. The US, onto itself, has lost it’s way. Bezos and Branson just want to make money to have people look down from the highest point possible.

I watched the docking this morning (prefect and early). Now the ship has been christened Endeavour. I know the crew named it after the shuttle and the Apollo 15 ships but it is an incredible name. It goes beyond the homage and looks to the future of our travels, discoveries and accomplishments to come in space.

Thank you SpaceX and thank you Elon Musk.

Update 2020 (5)

•May 22, 2020 • 1 Comment

Just wasted a considerable amount of time on a project I’ve been wanting to do for a long time. I would like to have a series based on ships of the Federation that have gone unnoticed. I figure there are lots of ship types (given the size of the Federation) that were designed and then forgotten.

Anyway, I went to my archives as I have a few of these already done and put the following together. I had forgotten what a mess this mesh was. The texture tree was so wonky and I had originally made all these weird specular maps. I had also tossed (or lost) the original PSD files so I tried to start over. Ultimately I gave up and just did a basic ambient and shadow pass then called it a day.

Back Story

The DeGamma class was a purpose built early warning ship built after the Romulan incursion of 2265. The report sent back by the USS Enterprise showed the Romulans had developed cloaking technology that made the neutral zone bases vulnerable (a modern day Maginot line). The response was a medium size cruiser utilizing strong deep space scanning. The scanning equipment was housed in the back half of the engineering section. This gave the ability to probe for ship movements beyond the Romulan side of the neutral zone where cloaking would not be needed. With the further revelation of Romulans appearing to be related to Vulcans, or at the very least being able to pass for one, the ship was covertly designed and given a cover as a extended range surveyor. Only a small number were built.

DeGamma Class