FANDOM


Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

Chronological list of studio models in the Star Trek films.

This list is of all new model designs that first appeared in all Star Trek films. Information on models that represented a single design can be found in the articles linked below. Information on models that were recycled or refurbished to represent different vessels or props from different species in all series will be listed herein.

Star Trek: The Motion Picture

K't'inga class

IKS Amar

K't'inga-class
Star Trek: The Motion Picture, et al.


Epsilon IX station

EpsilonIX

Epsilon IX station


Air tram

Air tram

Air tram


Orbital office complex

This studio model was originally built as the orbital office complex for Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

Orbital office complex, concept art Orbital office complex, studio model Orbital office complex filming
Andrew Probert's original concept art
The completed studio model
Douglas Trumbull prepares to film a shot of the complex

It was designed by Andrew Probert, and in this form, was only used in The Motion Picture. Designing the office complex was the first design work that Probert did for the film. (The Art of Star Trek, p. 171; [1])

Construction on the complex began during the production of Star Trek: Phase II. According to Magicam's visual effects artist Jim Dow, "The first design for the space-office complex was by Mike Minor. It was composed of clusters of dodecahedrons. We worked on that for months, until we found out that it is literally impossible to cluster dodecahedrons – impossible mathematically. Mike could draw it – and it looked terrific – but we couldn't make it work. We have to use a simpler shape." Additionally, an more detailed model was required to allow it to have a "motion-picture quality." (Starlog #27, October 1979, p. 27-28; The Art of Star Trek, p. 171)

The model of this facility was filmed in the summer of 1978, on one of Douglas Trumbull's stages at Future General Corporation. (The Making of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, p. 206)


Though it only appeared in its original configuration for The Motion Picture, an okudagram of the complex, sketched by Doug Drexler, also appeared in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Star Trek: Voyager.

For budgetary reasons and a limited time schedule, and at the recommendation of producer Robert Sallin, ILM's supervising modelmaker, Steve Gawley, inverted the original model, took a few things off and added a few new things before rechristening it as the Regula I science station for Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. "It was quite cost effective," Gawley said, adding "it was this approach that prevailed throughout the project." (The Making of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, p. 123; The Special Effects of Trek, p. 65; The Making of the Trek Films, p. 25; Trek: The Unauthorized Story of the Movies, p. 67)

The Making of... reference features the station on its front cover. The station type is also a featured FASA supplement book, Regula-1 Orbital Station Deckplans.

It was reused in the same configuration, though at different scales, for several episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation, before it appeared one last time in DS9, courtesy of stock footage from The Wrath of Khan.

The model would be modified one final time prior to the start of DS9 Season 6 to appear, initially, as Starbase 375, before making two subsequent appearances as other related station before the end of the season.

According to David Stipes, "all the lower tanks were removed, and it had been refurbished by Gary Hutzel and Tony Meininger." According to Hutzel, "I had seen it in storage [and] we brought it back because it was such a cool model, a really beautiful miniature." (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion, p. 500) It appeared one final time in an okudagram in VOY.

Additional sources

Earth spacedock

Model variations
USS Enterprise (NCC-1701) in spacedock USS Enterprise-B in drydock
USS Enterprise spacedock
Star Trek: The Motion Picture
NAR-30974
Star Trek Generations


Cargo management unit

Work Bee with cargo crates

Work Bee
Star Trek: The Motion Picture, et al.


Travel pod

Travel pod

Travel pod
Star Trek: The Motion Picture, et al.


Refit Constitution class

USS Enterprise (NCC-1701) in spacedock, aft

USS Enterprise, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, et al.


Surak

Surak shuttle, aft quarter

Surak


V'ger

V'ger ship

V'ger

  • See main article: V'ger


Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Miranda class

Model variations
USS Reliant USS Bozeman, aft
Miranda-class
Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, et al.
Soyuz-class
TNG: "Cause and Effect"


Star Trek III: The Search for Spock

Merchantman

This model was originally designed by Nilo Rodis and built by ILM to represent the Merchantman in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock. In Voyager, the ship appeared as both a physical model and CGI model.

Additional sources

Klingon Bird-of-Prey

Klingon Bird-of-Prey

Kruge's Bird-of-Prey
Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, et al.


Spacedock-type

USS Enterprise approaches the Earth Spacedock

Spacedock
Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, et al.


Orbital shuttle

Orbital shuttle studio model

Orbital shuttle
Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, et al.


Excelsior class

USS Excelsior

Excelsior-class
Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, et al.


Oberth class

USS Grissom (fore)

Oberth-class
Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, et al.


Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home

Whale Probe

Whale Probe

Whale Probe


Star Trek V: The Final Frontier

Pioneer 10

Pioneer10

Pioneer 10


Galileo

Galileo 5

Galileo-type shuttle
Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, et al.


Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country

SD-103

SD-103 model

SD-103 model in its original configuration

Model variations
SD-103 USS Jenolan USS Nash approaching DS9
SD-103 (NAR-25820)
Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country
USS Jenolan (NCC-2010)
TNG: "Relics"
USS Nash (NCC-2010-5)
DS9: "Playing God", "Accession", "Trials and Tribble-ations", "Chrysalis"
Unnamed SD-103 type shuttle, 2293 Farragut shuttlecraft Unnamed SD-103 type shuttle, 2371
A SD-103 type shuttlecraft parked at Starfleet Drydock
Star Trek Generations
Farragut shuttlecraft
Star Trek Generations
Unnamed shuttle
Star Trek Generations

The studio model of the SD-103-type, built especially for The Undiscovered Country was purely an initiative of Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), the company contracted to do the visual effects for the movie, since scene 24 of the movie script did not foresee in one. The concept originated from the brain of ILM's Visual Effects Art Director Bill George, when he was conceiving a visual effects shot for the movie. He clarified, "When Kirk and the others head up to the spacedock to reboard their ship, we really wanted to open the film up and show the grandeur of space. Immediately I thought of 2001 – in particular, the docking sequence between the Orion space clipper and the double-wheeled Space Station One. I also got the bug in my mind to do an angle on the spacedock that hadn't been done before. I looked at at the model from all angles, and eventually ended up lying down on the ground to look up at it before I realized that was the perfect shot – it hadn't been done before, plus it was the natural angle of approach if you were coming up from Earth." George decided to beef out the shot with a new shuttle model. While Paramount Pictures had shuttle models available from the previous outings, The Search for Spock and The Final Frontier, George decided nevertheless to have a new one built. This was partly due of George being a consummate modelmaker (he had started out at ILM as such) and, though it was strictly speaking not his job anymore, he could not refrain himself from building another one, as studio model requirements were very light for ILM on this particular outing. All other models featured in the movie, including some on which George himself had previously participated in their builds, were reuses from earlier productions. He had John Goodson design one, and together they build the model, or as he has put it, "We designed and constructed a new shuttlecraft model just for this shot, the only new model we got to do this time. It was done very quickly – in a week – and was about sixteen inches long." (Cinefex, issue 49, p. 48)

George and Goodman embellished the model by endowing the ventral side with several add-ons that had their origins in AMT/Ertl Star Trek model kits. So did the model feature two nacelle caps with Bussard collectors of the Enterprise-D model kit (No. 6619) as well as warp nacelle from the Romulan warbird model kit (No. 6858). Unfortunately for them, no dorsal views were seen of their model in the movie, though the tips of the Enterprise Bussard collectors were.

The model made a reappearance in Star Trek Generations as two unnamed SD-103 type shuttlecraft from the USS Farragut, sent down to the surface of Veridian III to pick up the survivors of the crashed USS Enterprise-D. However, since the actual model was by that time already modified and altered, the shot of the shuttle in flight was actually stock footage from The Undiscovered Country, but flopped and altered in post-production by adding the blue Farragut signage. The one seen on the saucer of the crashed Enterprise-D was not even a model but part of the matte painting that was done at ILM for the scene. (Cinefex, issue 61, p. 77) Still, a second model was in effect constructed for the movie, albeit a tiny one. It was built to go with the modified NAR-30974 spacedock model, carried over from The Motion Picture, as atmosphere, and it could be seen, though only just barely, parked, when the USS Enterprise-B left spacedock at the beginning of the movie.

Dan Curry touching up the USS Jenolan model at Image G

Dan Curry touching up the USS Jenolan model for its use in "Relics" at Image G

SD-103 model, ventral side SD-103 model refurbished as the USS Jenolan USS Jenolan model, profile view
Ventral side of the original studio model, showing its AMT/Ertl add-ons
The model refurbished as the USS Jenolin
The USS Jenolan model, ¼ profile view
USS Nash studio model, dorsal view SD-103 model refurbished as the USS Nash NAR-30974 SD-103 type shuttle
The model refurbished as the USS Nash, ¾ dorsal view
The USS Nash model at auction
The tiny NAR-30974 model at auction

In between the two movies, the original model itself was heavily modified by Greg Jein, who added warp engines to the model, with components derived from the Constitution-class and Miranda-class models, and given the look of a full starship with several decks, to appear as the Sydney-class. (Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (Special Edition), text commentary; TNG Season 6 DVD-special feature, "Departmental Briefing Year Six - Production") Jein also extensively refurbished the dorsal side by endowing the original smoother surface by adding the bridge and deflector crystal assembly modules, as well as the ventral side by removing George's original add-ons and replacing them with add-ons in order to convey the sense of the model being a larger scaled ship. The now Sydney-class model initially appeared as USS Jenolan, though Jein or one of his modelers actually mislabeled the ship as "Jenolin", in "Relics", where the misspelled name however, was never clearly discernible (that was until 2014, when the episode was remastered and where it could be discerned that the name was not digitally corrected). Later, the model appeared, flipped over and relabeled, as the USS Nash in the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episodes "Playing God" (season 2), "Accession" (Season 4), "Trials and Tribble-ations" (Season 5) and "Chrysalis" (Season 7). As usual with the television appearances of studio models, footage of this model for its appearances in both series was shot at Image G, the company were Erik Nash worked as motion control camera operator, and whose name was given to the model for its Deep Space Nine appearances. (Cinefantastique, Vol 25 #6/Vol 26 #1, p. 102) It's accompanying registry number though, "NCC-2010-5", harkened back to the one the model was endowed with in its previous use as the Jenolan, "NCC-2010", and as far as in-universe usage of the Starfleet registry numbering system went, an odd one at that, as this was the only time that a ship was given a number of another class vessel appended with what appeared to be a follow number. Actually, since Deep Space Nine was already in pre-production at the time of "Relics", the modified model was seriously considered by Production Designer Herman Zimmerman and the producers to serve as the regular runabout shuttlecraft for the namesake station. Yet, it was ultimately decided to pass over the model in favor of the Danube-class, though the model served as a starting point for its design. (Star Trek: The Magazine Volume 2, Issue 10, p. 54)

The Sydney-class model (measuring 16½" × 11" × 4") was listed as Lot 704 in the 40 Years of Star Trek: The Collection auction with an estimated sale price of US$4,000 - $6,000; it sold on 7 October 2006 for US$22,000 ($26,400 with premium). The tiny SD-103 type model was of course part of the spacedock model, which sold as Lot 995 in the same auction on the same day for US$8,000 ($9,600 with premium), originally estimated at US$3,000 - $5,000. That model was acquired by American collector Adam Schneider, who managed to acquire several models from the auction. [2]

Star Trek Generations

Whorfin class

SS Lakul

SS Lakul


Amargosa observatory

Model variations
Shock wave at Amargosa Wormhole relay station in action
Amargosa observatory
Star Trek Generations
Wormhole relay station
DS9: "Destiny"


Star Trek: First Contact

Sovereign class

USS Enterprise-E at warp, 2375

Sovereign-class
Star Trek: First Contact, et al.


Akira class

Akira class-ventral, fc

Akira-class
Star Trek: First Contact, et al.


Norway class

Norway class, fc

Norway class


Saber class

Saber class-1, fc

Saber-class
Star Trek: First Contact, et al.


Steamrunner class

Model variations
Steamrunner class, forward view United Earth Steamrunners
Steamrunner class
Star Trek: First Contact, et al.
Unnamed United Earth starship class
ENT: "Storm Front, Part II"
Steam Runner class final design by Alex Jaeger

Final production concept art

The Steamrunner-class starship was designed by Alex Jaeger at ILM. The USS Appalachia, featured in First Contact, was apparently intended to be named "Streamrunner" originally, as based on the name appearing in Jaeger's sketch of the revamped "USS Streamrunner," dated 4 April 1996. This name was a homage to a song by the band Fold Zandura. The reasoning for the name change to Appalachia is unknown, and was subsequently adapted (or adopted) by the Star Trek Encyclopedia and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Technical Manual, but the original name, albeit misspelled, was retained as class designation.

Jaeger, in far more detail, recalled in 2009,

"Here's a bit of background on the Steamrunner: As one person pointed out, it was originally to be called the StReamrunner. This was the name of a song from a band called 'Fold Zandura' (formerly 'Mortal') It had a sci-fi feel to it and I thought it made a cool ship class name. But somewhere in the process the 'R' got dropped in one of the approval pages and it became the Steamrunner, which is still kinda cool retro-steampunk sounding. So the name stuck. Also on the design, it is actually the merging of two different designs I did. The front saucer section of one ship combined with the catamaran nacelles and boom section of another. The boom section of the second ship was then flipped upside down so the deflector was underneath. The first design had a secondary hull, but instead of struts to hold the nacelles, they where instead mounted to the saucer section and then cowled over. There was even a 3rd version with 4 nacelles, two on the top and two more attached to the lower secondary hull.

"The second design was more to my liking, it was a bit more 'automotive' in its design shapes. It featured the catamaran nacelles, but instead of being mounted on top of the saucer, they were mounted underneath and the saucer sort of bent around them. The Deflector dish boom was then mounted more like the boom on the Akira class only this wasn't a weapons pod per say. In the end I was asked to combine the front of #1 with the tail of #2 and after some adjustments, bam the Steamrunner as it appears in First Contact. Some of the more angular features were also a result of the rough model as well. So the more rounded #2 design would've been less economical from a VFX standpoint too." [3](X)

Steamrunner class CGI model by ILM Steamrunner Class CGI model by Digital Muse
ILM's original CGI model of the Steamrunner-class on the left, with Muse's revised version on the right...
EBvEGB2 Eaglemoss Steamrunner
...and Passaro's revised Eaglemoss version, as featured in the Encyclopedia on the right

The model was rendered as a computer-generated model and built by Larry Tan and Paul Theren. According to designer Jaeger, the software used to build the models consisted of software package combo, elaborating, "(...)ILM was using Electric Image for animation and Form-Z for the models of these ships back then." [4](X) A year later ILM was requested by Paramount Pictures to hand over their models made for Star Trek: First Contact, among them the Appalachia, to Digital Muse in preparation for use in the upcoming Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "Sacrifice of Angels". Due to Muse's use of different software, the model had to be largely re-rendered in LightWave 3D and was remapped at a higher resolution in the process, but was completed early enough to be already showcased in "Call to Arms". [5](X)

Visual Effects Supervisor David Stipes said that an overall length of 800 feet (243.8 meters) was generally used for its Deep Space Nine on-screen appearances. [6]

The apparently unaltered model made a near unnoticeable, but surprising nonetheless, reappearance as a presumably unrelated – considering the anachronistic nature of its reappearance – 22nd century class of ship used by the United Earth Starfleet hundreds of years before the Steamrunner class, in the Star Trek: Enterprise season four episode "Storm Front, Part II".

The model was again re-rendered in LightWave 3D by Fabio Passaro for use in its 2015 outing of the Star Trek: The Official Starships Collection from Eaglemoss Collections, featuring an even higher polygon count, higher resolution textures, and updated hull detailing, including the addition of visible fore and aft torpedo launchers, two shuttlebays on the aft part of the saucer, and impulse engines. [7] This model was later added as a graphic in the Star Trek Encyclopedia (4th ed., vol. 2, p. 325), replacing graphics of the class, created by Doug Drexler for previous editions, aside from having these originally featured in the above mentioned Deep Space Nine Technical Manual.

Borg sphere

Borg Sphere emerges

Borg sphere


Sovereign-type escape pod

Sovereign type escape pods

Sovereign-type escape pods


Phoenix

Phoenix space

Phoenix


T'Plana-Hath

TPlana hath in crowd

T'Plana-Hath


Star Trek: Insurrection

Ru'afo's flagship

Sona command ship

Ru'afo's flagship


Federation mission scoutship

Federation scoutship fore

NCC-75227


Type 11 shuttlecraft

Type 11 shuttle

Type 11 shuttlecraft


Federation holoship

Federation holoship (fore)

Federation holoship


Son'a battle cruiser

Sona battle cruiser aft

Son'a battle cruiser


Son'a collector

Sona collector

Son'a collector


Cousteau

Cousteau (yacht)

Cousteau


Son'a shuttle

Sona shuttle fore

Son'a shuttle


Star Trek Nemesis

Argo

Argo shuttle

Argo

  • See main article: Argo


Scimitar

Scimitar

Scimitar


Scorpion class

Scorpion class

Scorpion-class

  • No information yet.


Valdore

Valdore

Valdore


Star Trek

These models were computer-generated at ILM. This list is based on one generated at Ex Astris Scientia. Many of these ships were designed by Ryan Church.

USS Kelvin

USS Kelvin

USS Kelvin


Narada

Narada

Narada


Kelvin-type shuttlecraft

Medical shuttle 37

Kelvin-type shuttlecraft


Constitution-class (alternate reality)

USS Enterprise (alternate reality), profile

USS Enterprise


Military shuttle

Enterprise shuttle 89

Military shuttle


Jellyfish

Jellyfish

Jellyfish


USS Kobayashi Maru

USS Kobayashi Maru

USS Kobayashi Maru


Klingon Warbird

Klingon warbird

Klingon Warbird


Moore-type shuttlecraft

Enterprise shuttle 2

Moore-type shuttlecraft


Starbase 1

Starbase 1, alternate reality

Starbase 1


USS Armstrong

USS Armstrong

USS Armstrong


USS Newton

USS Newton

USS Newton


USS Mayflower

USS Mayflower

A Federation starship


Starship class #1

Unknown starship type 1

Unknown starship type

  • This starship class was seen briefly when the Gilliam approached Spacedock 1.


Starship class #2

Unknown starship type 2

Unknown starship type

  • This starship class was seen briefly when the Gilliam approached Spacedock 1.


Starship class #3

Unknown starship type 3

Unknown starship type

  • This starship class was seen briefly when the Enterprise warped away from Spacedock 1.


Vulcan escape craft

Unnamed Vulcan ship

Vulcan escape ship

  • This starship class is visible in the background when Spock arrived on Vulcan.


Constitution-type escape pod

Constitution type escape pod, 2258

The escape pod


Star Trek Into Darkness

Takayama-type shuttlecraft

Warrant, shuttlecraft

Takayama-type shuttlecraft


Jumpship

Federation Jumpship 208 side view

Federation Jumpship 208


Workbee (alternate reality)

Workbee, alternate reality

Workbee


K'normian trading ship

K'normian trading ship, fore

The K'normian trading ship


D4-class

D4 class on Qo'noS

D4 class


Io Facility

Io Facility

Io Facility


Cargo shuttle

Cargo shuttle, 2259

A cargo shuttle


Dreadnought-class

USS Vengeance

USS Vengeance


Garbage barge

Garbage barge

A garbage barge


Star Trek Beyond

This article or section is incomplete This page is marked as lacking essential detail, and needs attention. Information regarding expansion requirements may be found on the article's talk page. Feel free to edit this page to assist with this expansion.

Starbase Yorktown

Starbase Yorktown full view

Starbase Yorktown


Yorktown satellite

Yorktown satellite

Yorktown satellite


Kalara's escape pod

Kalara's escape pod

Kalara's escape pod


Yorktown sentry ships

Yorktown sentry ships

Yorktown sentry ships


Swarm ship

Swarm ship docked

Swarm ship


Krall's command ship

Krall's command ship

Krall's command ship


Freedom-class

USS Franklin, fore

Franklin type


Salcombe-type

USS Salcombe

Salcombe type


Community content is available under CC-BY-NC unless otherwise noted.

Fandom may earn an affiliate commission on sales made from links on this page.

Stream the best stories.

Fandom may earn an affiliate commission on sales made from links on this page.

Get Disney+