My Top 10 Sci-fi Side-arms

My Top 10 Sci-fi Side-arms

These are designs that fire energy and not bullets, but also picked due to its design


01: Type 2 phaser
Star Trek 1966

I consider this the Swiss army knife of fictional side-arms, Utilized primarily in defensive situations, the phaser type-2 had several applications, from use as a weapon to use as a cutting tool, explosive device, or energy source. Storing considerable energy, most phasers were distinguished by a roughly pistol or gun-type configuration, firing a focused energy discharge in the form of a beam or steady stream. the original design from the TV series has always been a favourite.

01


02: Han Solo’s Blaster
Star Wars 1977

The DL-44 was a powerful, highly modifiable and accurate blaster pistol. It packed a heavy punch compared to other pistols without losing accuracy, which made it a prime choice among many groups and individuals

02


03: Colonial Laser / Blaster
Battlestar Galactica 1978

Standard side-arm for Colonial warriors used by the Twelve Colonies, a very powerful weapon.

03


04: Laser / Blaster
Buck Rogers in the 25th Century 1979

Standard side-arm for Earth Directorate Officers in the 25th Century, there is a larger ungainly one, this I think is nicer looking.

04


05: Flame Gun
Logan’s Run 1976

The Sandman gun is the basic weapon of Deep Sleep operatives (AKA Sandmen), no idea how it works, but does not take bullets, some kind of energy, unlike the version in the book, in fact I like the film version more.

05


06: Stun Gun/ Kill Gun
Space1999 1975

Stun gun carried by authorised Moonbase personnel, when fired, it affects the central nervous system causing slowed heartbeat, respiration and immediate unconsciousness lasting for one hour.Unfortunately, many alien species have proven resistant to the stun setting.

06


07: Blake’s 7 Side-Arm
1978

There is very little known about this, but I remember thinking it looks like a futuristic laser weapon in 1978, more in keeping with a Alien look then something human made like the evil Federation design which are more typical human designs.

07


08: Sentry Laser Pistol.
The Black Hole 1979

This is the the standard side-arm for the sentry robots aboard the research vessel USS Cygnus, I thought it cool at the time.

08


09: The Visitor’s Laser
V (1983-85)

Interesting what appears to be a 2 stage weapon, again next to nothing is known, but I liked the look.

09


10: Rocket Pistol XZ-35
Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1934)

My original intention was to pick one design from each franchise or universe, but this design I think is the foundation of all that followed and influenced not only the 1980s Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, but the look George Lucas wanted for Star Wars 1977, the 1934 Buck Rogers also has matter transporters to beam people around from one chamber to another, beating both Outer Limits and Star Trek to the use of this form of transport.

010


 

My Top 16 Star Trek Designs

My Top 16 Star Trek Designs


It had to be asked and answered, I sat down and thought about the designs I enjoy the most from Star Trek universe, my personal preference. aesthetics and impact to me over the years.

I think any that follow my posts here will easily guess the top designs but perhaps I am wrong and they will take you completely by surprise


01 Constitution Class

starship-01


02 Constitution Class Refit

starship-02


03 Galaxy Class

starship-03


04 Excelsior Class

starship-04


05 Miranda class

starship-05


06 Sovereign Class

starship-06


07 Ambassador class

starship-07


08 Constellation class

starship-08


09 NX class

starship-09


10 Intrepid class

starship-10


11 Oberth class

starship-11


12 Defiant class

starship-12


13 Akira class

starship-13


14 Nebula class

starship-14


15 Nova class

starship-15


16 Antares class

starship-16

Top 10 Capital Starship Designs

My Top 10 Capital Ship’s


What are my top designs ?

This is something I have asked and been asked a number of times, my answer has always been conditional, “I have to place them into difference classes, capital ships, fighter ship and freighter ships and so on”. I will share what my top 10 designs are and I have picked the designs based on how they look, how versatile they are so some designs that I like just did not make it into my top 10 designs. I won’t say what ones they are, some mystery in life is good for you. 🙂

I will also be using film or TV screen-caps where possible, instead of using fan made designs

These are my choice’s of capital ship designs that have Long Range abilities and that can transport a large crews over great distances, Interstellar or better, having hyper-light speeds or warp speeds and large cargo carrying abilities.


Click on thumbnails to enlarge


01 .USS Enterprise

Original and Refit

Star Trek

TOS USS Enterprise as originally designed and screened in the 1960s, The Enterprise was designed by Walter “Matt” Jefferies for Star Trek, and become an Icon from the moment it appeared changing how science fiction was perceived and is still as popular as ever.

The new USS Enterprise Refit for its transition to the big screen,in 1979 giving a new glorious look by Mike Minor, Joe Jennings, Douglas Trumbull, Harold Michaelson, Richard Taylor and  Andrew Probert. One of my favourite Star Trek films to this day.

Both these ship share my 1st place in my list due to design legacy.


02. Battlestar Galactica

Battlestar Galactica

Colonial Battlestar Galactica designed by Ralph McQuarrie and built by John Dykstra and his team at Apogee Inc.

Over 1 nautical mile long or 1852 meters  and for those who like it in feet (6076.1 ft) (its a scale supported by John Dykstra) and I found via my own work in cgi anything smaller does not work, as the launch tubes are to small for the Vipers to fit!. Containing at least 150 Vipers in my estimation when at peak fighting condition and a large number of  colonial shuttle-craft  which are between 85 ft and 110 ft long, and a unknown number of ground support units called Landrams.

As a battleship it is the equal of Star Wars Imperial Star-destroyers in my view, but perhaps having no where near the same crew compliment as the ISDs or the range, but in a toe to toe battle more or less equal. Ion Cannons and Tie Bombers could give the IMPs the advantage if the Viper screen fell.

but it does have more of a predator look than the ISD, always a fan favourite

2nd place on my list down to the design.


03. Imperial Star Destroyer

Star Wars

The Imperial Star-destroyer, One of the most imposing designs to appear on screen, designed by Ralph McQuarrie and Joe Johnston among other ships for Star Wars. just under 1 terrestrial mile long 1,600 meters (5,200 ft) and has an impressive crew compliment Imperial-class Star Destroyers had over 37,000 crew on board— 9,253 officers and 27,850 enlisted personnel. The complement of 9,700 Storm-troopers added to a total of 46,803 crew and passengers.

While shorter in length than the Colonial Battlestar’s, The ISD is wider and taller and its over all design giving it more internal volume,

I think it should also be around 1 Nautical mile long like the Galactica, I know fans will disagree with my ideas here, but that’s all they are and I like both BSG and Star Wars with equal measure.

The ISD makes it to 3rd place in my list.


04: DSV Liberator

Blakes7

05 LIBERATORThe DSV Liberator was an abandoned spacecraft found drifting in the second episode of Blakes7 TV series, The Liberator (originally called simply DSV 2) was created by the “System” an alien race that look very like young women in very tight outfits, so no complaint there. The design I estimate to be around 780 meters or 2559.06 feet long

The Liberator was not designed by a model or special effects unit but by the set designer Roger Murray-Leach, due to poor funding the effects where never stellar but the design is interesting and in my mind worthy of inclusion in my top 10 / 12 but never fully explored or as I think the show if redone should, its one of the few shows that should be remade and by the BBC.

 4th place in my list


05: USS Cygnus

The Black Hole

06 USS CYGNUSThe Star of Disney’s The Black Hole has to be the USS Cygnus designed by Peter Ellenshaw

This is a stunning design and beautifully presented design from the film and I look forward to its appearance each time I watch it. I have no idea what its scale is.

5TH on my list


06: Odyssey

Ulysses 31

07 ODYSSEYUlysses 31 cartoon from the 1980s has a massive space craft Odyssey, controlled by a ship’s computer “Shyrka” and commanded by Ulysses. Ulysses is accompanied by his son “Telemachus” and his robot toy “Nono”, they are joined later by Yumi a blue-skinned girl and her brother Numinor. All the other crew and later Numinor are kept in suspended animation for much of the adventures, a curse by the Greek god Zeus and the crew only appearing from time to time under the control or others, a very good soundtrack by Denny Crockett and Ike Egan

Scale length 1224 m, width: 3125 m, height: 2005 m

6th on my list


07: Klingon D7 and Film upgrade

Star Trek

08 KLINGON D7Designed by the renowned Walter “Matt” Jefferies for Star Trek and is a fantastic design, more visually interesting than the season one Romulan Bird of Prey, The Klingon D7 was an instant hit and in my mind was not seen enough in Star Trek. . another Icon.

08 D7 KTINGAA remake of the classic, the D7, making it a K’t’inga class.  and like the D7 not seen enough.

7th on my list


08: Roger Young

Starship Troopers

09 ROGER YOUNGROGER YOUNG Impressive battle design in my view, At this time I have very little information about the design and who worked on the models and props..  I will fix this once I do have the info.

8th on my list


09: IAS Excalibur

Crusade

09 IAS Excalibur
IAS Excalibur, The Excalibur is a big ship, a mile and a quarter long 2012 meters or 6,600 ft, powerful but with some limitations, when it fires itsbig guns they ship is powered down, power depleted unable to manoeuvre or fire back relaying on its resistant hull design to keep them safe.

I think it was based on the Liberator from Blake’s 7 and its a very elegant design and its a pity the series never reached its potential,

9th on my list


10: Cylon BaseStar

Battlestar Galactica

BasestarCylon Basestar, is the main adversary for the Colonial Battlestars, in the Battlestar Galactica universe,

“Col Tigh: [Pointing at the model of a Cylon basestar] She has 300 fighters, carries two long-range megapulsars, here and here, and over a hundred defensive laser turrets. She’s an orbiting killer, capable of destroying every ship we have, including the Galactica”.

from the episode “The Hand of God”  I cannot see Colonial Battlestar commanders going against Basestars with anything less than 150 vipers to fight those odds (2 to 1)

10th on my list


Do they make your list?

Check Out
My Top 10 Enemy Fighters

Note: I have removed the Event Horizon in favour of the Excalibur for the
9th position.

Top 10 Shuttle Craft Designs

Shuttle Craft


This is my choice of designs, I classed as a short-range vessels or auxiliary space vehicle that can transport more than two people over great distances, having hyper-light or sub-light speeds and some cargo carrying abilities, yet still classed as Auxiliary.


1st. Imperial Shuttle

Return of the Jedi (1983)

01 Imperial Shuttle

Lambda-class T-4a shuttle a very elegant design and really conveys that imperial stamp, this design has Hyperspace abilities with some armament and shielding to protect it , was a multi-purpose transport with a trihedral foil design used by the Galactic Empire during the Galactic Civil War, and was considered an elegant departure from the standards of brutish Imperial engineering. The shuttles were often used by high-ranking Imperial officers and such dignitaries


2nd. Danube Class Runabout

Star Trek Deep Space Nine

02 Federation Runabout
Star-fleet Runabout This is a cool design and one of the better designs to created for Star Trek Deep Space 9. it could be based on the versatility of Space 1999 Eagle’s based on some non canon information that I find interesting.
To make this versatility the Danube-class featured a modular design with the aft section being swappable for mission specific modules


3rd. Eagle

Space 1999

03 Eagle

The Eagle, Moon-base Alpha’s workhorse spacecraft in Space 1999, this has always been a firm favourite in design and appearance, I moved it down from number 1 place as it hampered by limited range.

Flown by a number of pilots, their captain is Alan Carter, the Eagle had the look and feel that many in the 1970s would be close to a realistic look for a space craft in the 1999s, at least I did.


4th. Vulcan Shuttle

Star Trek The Motion Picture (1979)

04 Vulcan Shuttle
The Surak, Federation-registered long range shuttle that was in service in the late 23rd century, I love this design the moment it appeared Star Trek The Motion Picture, sadly only appeared once in all the films and TV episodes as far as I know. With its detachable main cabin to enable to dock to another Starship when Transporters are not an option for whatever reason that arises in Star Trek, a fantastic design by the creative talents of Andrew Probert


5th. Colonial Shuttle

Battlestar Galactica 1978

05 Colonial Shuttle
Colonial Shuttle the work-horse for the Colonial Fleet, it can be between 85 and 110 ft long, commanded by two pilots and having room for a large number of passengers it can also carry one LandRAM land craft, but the design is limited to sub-light speed, but has significant cargo and crew capabilities.


6th. Orion III

2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

06 Orion III

Orion III This is a great design from 2001: A Space Odyssey and is a 2 stage lift off requirement mainly for passenger transport, apparently very limited in range only orbital abilities, its its design, that places it in 6th place.


7th. Federation Shuttle

Star Trek The Original Series(1966)

07 Federation Shuttle

A fan favourite “Class-F shuttle-craft” or Galileo 7, The twenty-four foot long and could carry at least seven passengers, and a smaller aft section, which contained a small engineering area. only interplanetary abilities, but somehow manages to keep up with the Warp driven USS Enterprise in “The Menagerie”.. Perhaps it has some limited warp speed?


8th. Ranger 3

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1979)

08 Ranger 3
Ranger 3 the shuttle that takes Buck Rogers from the 20th century to the 25th century while Buck is frozen, it does have features of the USA Space Shuttle, but greatly smaller, so its good to have even a fictional NASA craft appear in my top 10 Shuttles


9th. Star Bug

Red Dwarf (1989)

09 StarBug
Red Dwarfs support craft own by Jupiter Mining Corporation and manned by the last human alive by the name of Dave Lister, the last known human alive, and Arnold Rimmer, a hologram of Lister’s dead bunk mate. The other characters are Cat, a life form which evolved from the descendants of Lister’s pregnant pet cat Frankenstein; Holly, Red Dwarf’s computer; Kryten, a service mechanoid. this craft changes from each season, but I do like the basic design.


10th. Starfire

Jason of Star Command (1978)

10 StarfireJason of Star Command flew a Starfire. This fast spaceship had a star pod that could separate from the ship in an emergency, a good design and one I remember with fondness from my youth..


Do they make your list ?

My Top 10 Hero Fighters

My Top 10 Hero Fighters


This is a selection of hero fighters or the good guys only I will follow with the bad guys and there fighters in a later post.


1st. Incom T-65

Star Wars (1977)

1 X-wing

The Incom T-65 better known as the X-wing starfighter gains the top position for me mostly due to its versatility and range and general coolness, both humanoid and droid work too pilot and control this fighter.

While I think Buck Rogers starfighter look better and possibly is a little more manoeuvrable, the X-WINGS hyper-drive and fighter shielding makes this that bit tougher.

so this is my number 1 in my top ten.


2nd. Starfighter

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1979)

2 Thunderfighter

Buck Roger’s Starfighter designed by Ralph McQuarrie and built by Mike Joyce & Ken Larson, design wise it my favourite more than the X-wing. I have always just called it Starfighter not the other name given to it by the model builders, the Thunderfighter, the name never suited it in my thinking, I recently learned it could have been called a Starfury and that works for me far better.
It has interplanetary range, but has very limited interstellar range and must make use of Stargates in space, no exact information or locations are ever mentioned in the show about them.

The design is in a firm 2nd place in my list of top 10 designs


3rd. Colonial Viper

Battlestar Galactica (1978)

3 Colonial ViperThe Colonial Viper also a Ralph McQurrie design, the main fighter serving the Colonial Battlestars including the Galactica,

I do like the classic design more than the 2003 remake. The Viper has limited sub-light range but can using emergency boost get near light-speed but pilot beware of your fuel gauge. 2 turbo lasers for it main armament and one pilot, there is a 2 seater that appears later in Galactica 1980, one assumes that the Galactica always carried such a fighter from the start it is 3rd in my list.


4th. Y-Wing

Star Wars 1977

4 Ywing
BTL Y-wing starfighter, you guessed it another Ralph McQurrie design, a fighter-bomber and not as manoeuvrable as the X-Wing, but its heavy armour and heavy payload makes this fighter 4th in my top 10


5th. Gunstar

The Last Starfighter (1984)

05 Gunstar
The Gunstar is in one of the 1980’s best science fiction films and its also one of the first to use Computer-generated imagery or CGI for visual effects, created by Ron Cobb for the film. The Gunstar carries a complement of two operators, a pilot and a gunner. but has room for 3 crew, It’s primary weapons are lasers, photon bolts, particle beams and a new weapon called the Death Blossom and 5th place in my list.


6th. Hawk’s Fighter

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1981)

6 Hawk
Hawks Fighter as seen in Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, is a vary cool design and has both space travel and atmospheric abilities, with claws for landing or attach itself to other craft. built by Vance Frederick and Kenneth A. Larson, shame it will never be seen again and is in 6th place in my list.


7th Starfury

Babylon 5 (1994)

7 Starfury
SA-23E Mitchell-Hyundyne Starfury is used by Earth force with a closer adherence to real physics with regards to how human vessels manoeuvred in space, and that it could be depicted in an interesting and exciting way., the pilot stands with his or her back against what would be the wall/floor when at full thrust having no seat for a space fighter possibly the most practical design, very manoeuvrable, fast,there are a number of classes and has 1 pilot, Designed by Steve Burg and defined in Lightwave by Ron Thornton.

makes it in at number 7 in my list.


8th Thunderbolt

Babylon 5 (1996)

8 Thunderbolt

The Thunderbolt is as Starfury but with some atmospheric abilities, with what we would call a standard pilot seating arrangement, this ship has 2 pilots and I would have liked this to feature more than it did a cool, tough design.


9th BTA Fighter

Enemy Mine (1985)

9 BTA Fighter

BTA Fighter, I know next to nothing about this design, I have seen the film several times, but apart from having both pilot and navigator, I am at a loss.but I like the design enough for it to make it 9th in my list


10th Mark IX Hawk

Space 1999 (1974-5)

10 Mark IX HawkThe Mark IX Hawk is a warship featured in the first series episode of Space 1999 called “War Games”, it is highly manoeuvrable and well-armed, designed by Special Effects Supervisor Brian Johnson and then built by Martin Bower. Manned by 2 officers, pilot and gunner.

its 10th in my list due to limits of speed and range


Hammerhead

Space: Above and Beyond (1995)

SA-43 Endo/Exo-Atmospheric Attack Jet (“Hammerhead”) The Hammerhead just did not make my top 10 but it was in the running, close running, I liked the design, while I though the series had some promise.

Trivia

Full-scale models of the “Hammerhead” fighters used in the series were created in Australia at RAAF Base Williamtown. An unverified report stated that, while they were being stored on board the freighter before shipping, crewmen from a Russian freighter were caught taking pictures of them after mistakenly thinking they were a new kind of advanced U.S. tactical fighter

My Top 10 Enemy Fighters

My Top 10 Enemy Fighters


Every hero needs a villain, and every villain needs a deadly fighter to attack the hero, the following selection are mine.


1st. Cylon Raider

Battlestar Galactica (1978)

1 Cylon Raider

The Cylon Raider carries a crew of three Centurions, a commander and 2 co-pilots and normally carried into battle by a Basestar, each Basestar carries 300 of these attack ships and while they don’t have light-speed abilities, are quite a danger to any Colonial Viper, famous for their pin-wheel attack.

These ships can be beaten by human pilots due to quick and very human illogic thinking and reactions

1st place in my list due to design.


2nd. Advanced Tie Fighter

Star Wars (1977)

2 Advanced Tie Fighter
The Advanced Tie Fighter or Darth Vader’s Fighter only appeared once in Star Wars films and I for one wish it had seen more screen time, this could be the only canon Tie fighter that has some hyperspace abilities. it is also said to be faster then the standard tie fighter design.

2nd place in my list


3rd. Interceptor Tie Fighter

 Return of the Jedi (1983)

3 Interceptor Tie Fighter
Interceptor Tie Fighter
, like all but Vader’s Advanced Tie Fighter, these ships have no hyperspace abilities and require the use of a carrier ship or base, and like other Tie Fighters have no shields. they rely on speed and lots of it. RZ-1 A-wing interceptor was developed by the Rebel Alliance to counter this design, which is in fact faster.

3rd place in my list.


4th. Scorpion Fighter

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1979)

4 Scorpion Fighter
Scorpion Fighter as seen in Buck Rogers in the 25 century
, This model was mostly the work of Illianna Lowry and designed by David Jones. I like this design and like all other vessels in Buck Rogers, it makes use of Star-Gates located in space to make long distance trips.

4th position in my list.


5th. Pirates-Raider

Babylon5 (1994)

5 B5 Raider
The only enemy design I liked in Babylon5, I never cared for the spider look of the shadow vessels, so I always liked this and I get the impression of Cylon Raider from this design 
                                                                          5th in my list

6th. Hatchet Fighter

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1979)

6 Hatchet FighterThe Hatchet fighter, also used as pirate fighters, Draconia Fighter, everyone  used this fighter in Buck Rogers in the 25th century, its is strange to see the pilot sit over the main engine section, but it is good to have more Buck Roger’s designs making it to my list.

6th place on my list.


7th. Tie Fighter

Star Wars (1977)

7 Tie Fighter
The Tie Fighter and where it started, its a basic design really with no frills save for the side panels, distinctive sound when in motion (I know, no sound in space) single pilot, no shield, no real armour, no hyper-drive, no hope, for just been so deadly and great in Star Wars.

7th in my list


8th. Treen Fighters

Dan Dare Pilot of the Future (2002)

8 Treen ship
The Treen Fighters, this is from a animated show I like made in CGI by Foundation Imaging called “Dan Dare Pilot of the Future” , I liked the designs in the show which are all based on the Frank Thompson British comic of the same name from 1950.


9th. Drone Fighters

Jason of Star Command (1978)

9 Dragos's fighter
Drone Fighter
, in the TV show Jason of Star Command, and I liked the design, who ever built it had a lot of fun and I did wish they had more screen time, as this was for kids the drone fighters fitting the name where unmanned so no one was killed when they where destroyed, shame this restraint is not more prevalent on TV shows now

9th position on my list.


10th. Shark Fighter

Buck Rogers in the 25th Century (1979)

10 SharkAnother Buck Rogers enemy fighter from the episode, Flight of the War Witch, Part 1 & 2 , this design just appealed to me when I saw it for the first time on TV in the 1980’s and to this day, I have never built it in Lightwave3d, but one day perhaps.

10th position in my list.


Do they make it into your list


Space Stations Next