AMT Enterprise 'Dimples'...Why Are They There?

Tremas

Sr Member
I've recently managed to score an 18 inch AMT re-issue of everyone's fave the Big 'E' (It numbers the 16th time I've had this kit...don't ask!), which I plan on starting next year.

A question I've wondered about for a lot of years is, just what are those dimples in the lower saucer supposed to be for? Where they ever on any plans done by Matt Jeffries, or just added to the kit to break up the (somewhat detail-less) bottom?
 

robn1

Master Member
I've never heard an explanation for the dimples. As for detail, there was plenty there that they overlooked :unsure
 

JMChladek

Sr Member
I honestly don't know why they are there. I heard a story I hadn't been able to confirm that the dimples on the only long box E kits were there to help de-mold the part (kind of like ejector pin marks, but not flush with the saucer exterior). When they got to the small box retool, it looks to me like whomever tooled up the new kit interpreted the dimples literally and they became more of a kit feature (and were centered to the rest of the lower saucer details).

In a weird twist of fate, while I don't believe the dimples originally were a feature of the classic Enterprise, it seems they may have possibly inspired the docking ports on the Movie E. During the pre-production of Star Trek Phase 2, the studio model being built had at least one or two docking ports present on the lower secondary hull (below the 1701 markings on the bottom of the hull) where a Dodecahedron shaped travel pod would dock while the ship was in drydock. I've seen one painting that seemed to indicate there might have been a similar port planned for the lower saucer (perhaps more than one). One of the famous photos of the Phase II E studio model being built shows a primered small box 18" AMT Enterprise sitting on the table behind it presumably to provide some 3D detail inspiration. Of course that model was scrapped and the Motion Picture Enterprise was all new. But they kept in the travel pod sequence and there was at least one docking port on the lower saucer, but it was inside an airlock with a flush mounted door. This is the airlock that Spock and later Kirk used for their V'Ger spacewalks (both in the cut version and the scene that appeared in the theatrical cut of the film).
 

phase pistol

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER








I always loved the Berkey teaser poster because, while still vague in that Berkey style :lol it gave an indication of glass blisters or something there... observation ports....?



 
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JMChladek

Sr Member
Thanks for the image links Phase Pistol. :) Seeing all three dimples on the bottom of the P2E saucer pretty much tells me somebody was thinking "docking ports" for the dimples. So, while it doesn't explain exactly why they were originally there, I find it funny that they might have ended up influencing the refit a little bit.
 

Tremas

Sr Member
Thanks for me as well, Double P. :D

I think the common thought is correct, about being possibly docking ports; I've seen them on some of the smaller 'E' models, as well (such as the original three-piece set with the D-7 & Romulan Bird of Prey).
 

phase pistol

Master Member
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Interestingly though, once the actual TMP Refit came about, those same locations became phaser banks!

 

JMChladek

Sr Member
Thanks for me as well, Double P. :D

I think the common thought is correct, about being possibly docking ports; I've seen them on some of the smaller 'E' models, as well (such as the original three-piece set with the D-7 & Romulan Bird of Prey).
That little E in the 3 piece set came out about a year or two after the small box retooled 18" kit was issued (probably the same year or a year after the Romulan BOP came out). Since it mirrors the details found on the 18" kit, it looks like AMT was using the same scaling data, dimples and all.

Ultimately in most every 18" kit I've built, I just ended up filling the dimples and sanding off the raised detailing anyway. Then I use a cutting compass to scribe in the the three rings on the bottom in their proper positions.
 

Tremas

Sr Member
That little E in the 3 piece set came out about a year or two after the small box retooled 18" kit was issued (probably the same year or a year after the Romulan BOP came out). Since it mirrors the details found on the 18" kit, it looks like AMT was using the same scaling data, dimples and all.

Ultimately in most every 18" kit I've built, I just ended up filling the dimples and sanding off the raised detailing anyway. Then I use a cutting compass to scribe in the the three rings on the bottom in their proper positions.
Sounds like a good plan. Might have to steal that when I start on it. :D
 

trekriffic

Sr Member
I have both the 1/650 and 1/1400 scale AMT Enterprises and I can attest to the fact the smaller model is an exact scaled down replica of the bigger kit. Right down to the dimples.
 

Jedi Dade

Sr Member
I had always thought that the dimples were there to represent somethign at the locations on the studio mode ( that had nothing there) wher ethe phasers sometimes fired from... but maybe that was just my 10yr old mind coming up with justification for divots where i did not remember them form the show :)

Jedi Dade
 

phase pistol

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
In this wonderful analysis of TOS Enterprise effects shots

www.trekplace.com

...you can see that in only one episode did the phaser beams emanate from that high up on the lower saucer : "Arena"



Most of the time the phasers emanate from the ring at the base of the lower sensor, where the dome connects to the sloping primary hull.



K
 

CessnaDriver

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Guess we are forced to consider the ring as a phaser array like TNG did.
Maybe the red phasers are just only visable to the naked eye after a certain point and originate from the ring too.
 
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Jedi Dade

Sr Member
Really - the FX guys just said to them selves - "We need to fire some light beams... whats's theis gene guy smoking? Joe grab a sharpy, I need to dram on the film..."

:lol

Seriously - they had no intention of trying to remain consistent. It just seems clear that they had no "defined" location for phasers and torpedoes.... They just kinda winged it. as they went along. All that being said the lines form an undefeindd location on the lower part of the secondary hull were what "I" thought the inspiration was for those divots. having grown up I see the errors of my tought patterns, but still think that's what they were intended to be :)

BTW those are two different enterprises... :D

Jedi Dade
 

CessnaDriver

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Personally I think the ion pod thingy was supposed to be a phaser turret and it just got blown off by the FX guys or they never got the memo.
 

phase pistol

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Me I'm just amazed that they were ever able to hit anything, what with thee beams splaying out like that. :p

"A phaser hit at this distance would be the most fantastic stroke of luck!"

He ain't kiddin'. :rolleyes
 

CessnaDriver

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Now where did the photon torpedoes come from?
Until TWOK, I never even considered they involved a physical object, I thought up till then it was still a strictly an energy based weapon.
 
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