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"Star Trek ships (Studio Bergstrom) scale comparisons" Topic

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08 Jun 2017 12:03 p.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

  • Changed title from "Star Trek ships ( Studio Bergstrom) scale comparisons" to "Star Trek ships (Studio Bergstrom) scale comparisons"
  • Removed from Spaceship Gaming board
  • Crossposted to Star Trek board

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MacrossMartin Inactive Member23 Oct 2016 7:19 p.m. PST

Hello all!

There seems to be a fair bit of head-scratching about the sizes of the Trek-inspired ships that will be soon available from Studio Bergstrom, so I thought I would share some images that I hope will help resolve the issue of scale.

Firstly, I think it only fair to point out that, as many of you will be aware, Star Trek is notorious for sizing ships up and down with little or no regard for scale. The Klingon Bird of Prey is the worst offender, with no less than four canon ships of its design, all visually identical, ranging from the scout-size B'rel to the gigantic D'tai (see below)


- so, one could argue that there is a canon precedent for using differently scaled miniatures of the same ship to represent different classes.

Setting that aside, let's look at the differences between the 1/3125, 1/3788 and original FASA 1/3900 scale miniatures…

- the 1/3125 scale chart also shows the two fighters I've designed so far; these are NOT to 1/3125, they are closer to 1/600 scale, but they are there so you can see what size they should come out of the moulds at.

Note the size of the Starline 2500 Constitution class, for comparison.

Now, here's the same ships, in 1/3788:

- here, I've included the FASA D10 and D18 at their actual sizes (I have both of these, so the measurements are exact). Unfortunately, I don't have a FASA Loknar, so I didn't include a 'guesstimate' of its dimension.

Remember, the FASA miniatures were produced at 1/3900, so they are slightly down-scale from the Starline 2400 1/3788 scale.

As you can see, the D18 is pretty much the same length as the FASA miniature. Yes, this is deliberate! The FASA mini looks about the right size for a destroyer-sized class.

The Loknar is considerably smaller that the Constitution class, in spite of the original FASA drawing using the same saucer and nacelles as the Connie.

Why the reduction in size? Well, simply because the Loknar is supposed to be a Frigate, and not a Cruiser. If her saucer was the same size as that of the Connie, she'd have to be classified as a medium cruiser, which, clearly, she isn't.

My intention here was to scale her to be around the same mass as a destroyer or large frigate, mostly because I don't much like the Fed frigates in the SFB ranges, which I find a bit uninspiring, visually speaking.

But the real point of contention, I think, is the size of the D10. As you can see, 'my' D10 is a LOT bigger than its FASA forebear! There are a few reasons for this

Firstly, I was determined to produce a D10 that did not suffer the fate of my FASA D10's namely, taking to the field with thrice-glued nacelles (if any) and bent booms. The FASA D10 is a lovely, delicate thing… which hardly seems appropriate for a Klingon heavy cruiser!

Secondly, I am fully in agreement with Brad Torgersen, whose fan site for the FASA Starship Tactical Simulator

- is a cornucopia of knowledge about the FASA ships. Brad went to the trouble of checking the purported size of the D10 from various details. When correctly scaled, the D10 works out much larger than the dimensions FASA originally provided, as shown in this pic from Brad's site:


So, I scaled up my D10 to be a closer fit to Brad's dimensions. (Mine's a tad smaller.)

Also, I didn't want the D10 to look, well, weeny, when compared to the Federation's big bruiser:

- and as you can see, if I made 'my' D10 the same size as the FASA original, weeny would be a rather apt description.

So, there you are! Now you know (in long, boring detail!) my rationale for my decisions on the sizes of the miniatures.

I've just realised I haven't shared proper images of my fighters yet, so I think I'll show some off in a new thread later.

Until then, have fun!

- Martin

PaddySinclair24 Oct 2016 12:46 a.m. PST

One thing to remember is that FASA's frigates are not what, for instance, SFB designated frigates (not saying FASA's designation is right mind you).

A FASA frigate is a larger, combat dedicated (in the main) ship that may also have embarked troops rather than the small, sub destroyer sized vessels of SFB. The Locknar was a bit of an uncomfortable fit as it really only packed a close range punch, and didn't have a viable troop contingent, but clearly wasn't a very capable explorer.

The Chandley Class is a very good example of the FASA ethos. An absolute beast of a vessel in combat with plenty of embarked marines and shuttles.

Norrins24 Oct 2016 1:39 a.m. PST

Thanks for the infographic on the Birds Of Prey. Had never heard of the D'tai Class before.

The problem with Star Trek ship size charts is that they are all different. My size chart shows the D7/K'tinga as 228m and the B'rel at 109m. I guess at the end of the day it comes down to what works!

Eclipsing Binaries24 Oct 2016 3:08 a.m. PST

Extremely helpful post!

Not sure if anybody needs to know, but I use them because they're cheap and easy to convert, but the Micromachines Connie is around 75mm and their D-7 is about 64mm.

MacrossMartin Inactive Member24 Oct 2016 4:09 a.m. PST

Paddy – Yep, I know full well about the vexing issue of the size of FASA frigates. :)

I think it is a good principle, though, to assume that Fed frigates started a little on the smaller side (Loknar), but as the mission parameters of the type expanded, types like the Northampton and Chandley emerged, bigger, more capable, and sporting weaponry that would classify them as battlecruisers in any other fleet.

I loved the Chandley as a kid, but my God, you needed to throw planets at it if you were playing the Klingons!

Norrins – Agreed! Whatever works for you, works for me! This is all IMT (In My Trek) and it is of no greater worth than your interpretation. But I like to let people into my head every now and again, and see my thinking. (Please don't touch anything while you're in there, though, especially THAT button…)

EB – I have an embarrassment of micromachine Connie and D7 conversions… they are almost exactly the right size in 1/3788 scale (the D7's a bit on the big side).

I loved those things when they first came out. Remember picking up a bunch of 3-ship packs when department stores were chucking them out. Five bucks for three Trek ships? Yes please… mind you, that was *ahem* a few years ago now…

TheBeast Supporting Member of TMP24 Oct 2016 4:12 a.m. PST

Had never heard of the D'tai Class before.

Me, as well.

From DITL: "a single appearence, during TNG's "The Defector"."

I'll have to go back and look at the episode, but "clearly they are much, much bigger" can be a bit tricky.

Also of note from DITL: "The name D'tai is one I've invented just to give myself something to call this thing, and is a nonsense word which is intended to sound Klingon."

Thanks, Martin! I've seen a lot of comparison diagrams, and I really like these; very much to the point.


Edit: "mind you, that was *ahem* a few years ago now…" Yes, it was, and they were 'chucking' for even cheaper before they were done. ;->=

wminsing Inactive Member24 Oct 2016 5:33 a.m. PST

Why the reduction in size? Well, simply because the Loknar is supposed to be a Frigate, and not a Cruiser. If her saucer was the same size as that of the Connie, she'd have to be classified as a medium cruiser, which, clearly, she isn't.

Yes while FASA did a great job with the Klingons and Romulans their Federation line-up was as guilty of Constitution saucer/nacelle cut and paste jobs as the worst fan-ship offenders. Brad Torgenson has done an excellent job of rejiggering the worst offenders.


trynda170124 Oct 2016 8:35 a.m. PST

Martin, you'll have to post some of your Micromachines conversions, perhaps over in the Modelling thread on Brads forum so as not to derail this thread?

Eclipsing Binaries24 Oct 2016 9:07 a.m. PST

Trying not to derail the thread…. I had a massive missed opportunity a couple (ahem) years ago when I worked in a Virgin Megastore as the hobby games buyer. We had a promo on, either for Star Trek VHS or a computer game, and there were free keyrings which were basically micromachines enterprises. About 50-60 were binned at the end of the promo campaign and I was on a day off and missed grabbing them. I think I got two.

I've done two conversions that I still have, one is a compact cruiser (but the nacelles sit too close into and under the saucer probably frying half the crew), and the other raising the secondary hull to above the saucer and dropping the nacelles under so a kinda upside down Connie.

PaddySinclair24 Oct 2016 11:56 a.m. PST

Just a thought, but what about looking at the "Four Years Wars" designs from the "Prelude to Axanar" fan film? There's some cuties in there plus Prime Universe versions of the Kelvin Timeline ships too.

emckinney24 Oct 2016 1:01 p.m. PST

Studiio Berstrom already produced them in 1/3125 scale. Tied up in legal heck.


stumer24 Oct 2016 3:08 p.m. PST

"Studiio Berstrom already produced them in 1/3125 scale. Tied up in legal heck."

Nope, still available in the Axanar Donor store, and the single nacelle Destroyer 'Loki' was just added to the line up (on the 2nd page of the models section) today!

Sadly, that page by Doug is not very accurate. The Discovery phase closed last Friday, and Axanar won some great points to help their defense when this is scheduled to go to trial early next year. The long wait may be over on that production getting back on track!

MacrossMartin Inactive Member24 Oct 2016 3:41 p.m. PST

Trynda1701 – I might dust them off and do just that. :)

'Drew has beaten me to answering Paddy's question. For those interested in the Axanar ships, I believe you have to pay a small donation ($10?) to access the donor store. (Don't quote me on that!) Not too much, if you compared it to the door fee for a gaming convention, for example.

Axanar is a curious beast. The legal wrangling would make a movie in its own right! I used to be firmly opposed to Alec Peters and co., but I now suspect he's been unfairly misrepresented by some rather mischievous bloggers… civil cases are rarely black and white.

But, the starships are very nice! I wouldn't mind having a go at doing some TOS era upgraded versions of the Fed ships…

PaddySinclair25 Oct 2016 2:43 a.m. PST

To paraphrase a certain Starfleet captain, "That's what I get for missing staff meetings…"

That's a shame, hadn't realised the whole legal mess extended to their designs as well :( A real shame, because that would be a brilliant era to game and the miniatures look superb :)

MacrossMartin Inactive Member25 Oct 2016 3:43 a.m. PST

Paddy – I don't believe there's anything stopping anyone from signing up with the Axanar Donor Store and buying as many of the miniatures there as desired. Heck, I'm designing starships, and I'M tempted to do just that!!

Rest assured, if you're interested in gaming Axanar, my KotSB! rules will be covering the Four Years War, although perhaps not exactly as described in 'Prelude to Axanar'. I'll probably steer closer to the original FASA material, but we'll see.

Eclipsing Binaries25 Oct 2016 7:52 a.m. PST

I was on the verge of buying some Axanar ships until I saw the shipping costs to the UK and had second thoughts. Then decided to go for it anyway, then the pound crashed. I then noticed they were 1/3125 and gave up the idea. They are wonderful designs and the minis look fab, but they don't fit with the rest of my ships :(

emckinney26 Oct 2016 3:17 p.m. PST

Ken Burnside has a licensed Axanar module ready for Squadron Strike. All of the ships come in both 2D and 3D version. It plays really quickly in 2D, even though the photon torpedoes are seeking weapons. Nicely developed class histories and notes on Klingon vs. Federation design philosophies. Fits in technology advances as well without making them overwhelm the game.

Part time gamer26 Jan 2017 7:13 a.m. PST

Macross Martin
This is all IMT (In My Trek)
Thank You! Once 'long ago' I saw ST TOS and ..that was it. Thus created its own 'problem'.
Unless I 'saw' it in TOS, I left it out of My ST Universe when I wrote my own game.
As a result the Feds had phasers/torp, the Klingons had only disruptors. As IIRC never did TOS show or mention their having either phasers or torp.

Many yrs later I got the 1st & 2nd editions of the resourse books by FASA for the 3 main factions. They made for great inspiration and info.

The Chandley, as a mini, 'way' to big for whats 'supposed' to be just a frigate, and to say a bit over-gunned.. understatement for a FF.

Good point on the D10. A CA 'bigger' than the D7 Battlecruiser? Although I think the slightly smaller '2400 series' would be much more accurate than what FASA turned out. "If' someone like ADB could make it. But like the D18 DD, FASA is the only provider so to speak. The down side of IP rights.

"When" and its been along time, since buying any ST mini's, I generally look to ADB's 2400 line. But 'practically' every Klingon ship is the D7 BC, only smaller or larger depending on what type of ship its suppossed to represent. When you really look at them, its basically the same design.

Ok sorry guys I have gone 'waay' long on this..
Last point.
ADB's 2500 Starline that WAS meant to become ST ACTA w/ Mongoose Publishing. The cost and the fact Mongoose was involved. My first thought: "They (MG) wont follow thru with this either."
It kept me from ever getting into that mini series.

emckinney26 Jan 2017 11:15 a.m. PST

I'm not caught up on one navy calling a ship a "cruiser" and other calling the same size ship a "battlecruiser." We built destroyers and cruisers on the same hull!

Eclipsing Binaries18 Mar 2017 7:02 a.m. PST

Any movement on these guys? Seemed like every few days MacrossMartin was hitting us with a fabulous new ship design but it seems to have gone slower than the release date news from Star Trek Discovery (STD!!!! Didn't they realise?)

stumer18 Mar 2017 8:36 a.m. PST

I'm just waiting on a few designs from Martin so I can get an estimate on how much the prototype master prints will cost (he's been under the weather for a while.) Then I'll set up a pre-sale drive to fund all of the tooling.

Eclipsing Binaries19 Mar 2017 2:29 a.m. PST

Pass on our regards to Martin. His health is more important.

MacrossMartin Inactive Member19 Mar 2017 3:46 a.m. PST

No, damn him! Starship miniatures are FAR more important! Drag his butt out of his sick bed, and chain him to his computer!!!! :D

Apologies all , for the slow progress of late. I've been having soooo much fun with the 'flu, cancelled operations, evil medicines, and a raft of other delights. :(

On the upside, I have started to become productive once more, and things are moving again. Just sent 'Drew a corrected file he needs, so I *think* we're good to go to the next stage! (Actually, don't quote me on that…)

Thanks for the good wishes, EB. :)

- Martin

TheBeast Supporting Member of TMP20 Mar 2017 8:33 a.m. PST

Those of us of 'a certain age' know just how silly you're being.

Of course we'll quote you! ;->=

Seriously, pacing is everything. You DO need the challenges to keep spirits up, but you DON'T need to wear yourself out.

Listen to those around you. By the way, do as I say, not as I do.


MacrossMartin Inactive Member20 Mar 2017 6:00 p.m. PST

Lol, yes Doug, and thanks. :)

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