TNG Cobra Head Phaser question

Mr. Nagata

Sr Member
Did the hero prop ever make an appearance outside the 3rd season? I'm talking about the one with the light-up LED power gauge.
In the 4th season episode "Legacy" they seem to be using the original hero props with LED meter, even though it's not lit in these particular shots.


Later in the series they switched to sleeker props that lacked even the indication of a meter, just blank on top.

I haven't surveyed the entire series for other appearances though...

Thanks for the info. Yeah, that top series of photos looks like the "third season" body with the big emitter section and slightly beefier, less angular body. Though the lower left photo looks like the later season body to me, which I'm sure they were mixing in at that point.

I'm just trying to confirm that the only true hero prop was that third season body. The later body was never hollow. So the kit which is a cast of the later season cobrahead, but hollowed out is technically not accurate if you want to get nitpicky about it.
I believe the cobrahead is subtantially LARGER than the slimmed-down, no emitter cobraheads from seasons 5-7. To my eye, the "hero" phaser is a close match to the photos Karl posted, except for the detachable panel on the underside, of course...
I had a Roddenberry cobra head and also a cast of a third season body. The third season body, the one that was used to make the hero, is different. First, the black emitter is substantially larger, and actually fits flush against the silver body. The Roddenberry emitter, which I think is consistent with the later phasers, is shrunken down, so there's a noticeable lip between it and the body. Second, the the angles on the body are less angular. More balloony if that makes sense.

Maybe the Roddenberry kit IS a cast of some version of a hero prop. I just haven't see it on screen which is why I asked. But the hero prop seen in third season episodes like "The Vengeance Factor" and "The Hunted" is definitely a different phaser than that kit.
Mr. Nagata,

Actually, there were a few hollow TNG Cobra made post third season. I remember making several of them for Season Seven but the reason for the hollowness escapes me.

It wasn't made for light effects or a force setting indicator. Might of had to do with not being too heavy in a holster..
Thanks for the info. So there were some later hollow versions, just not for lights. I guess that third season version was still the only one with light effects then?

Mr. Nagata,

Actually, there were a few hollow TNG Cobra made post third season. I remember making several of them for Season Seven but the reason for the hollowness escapes me.

It wasn't made for light effects or a force setting indicator. Might of had to do with not being too heavy in a holster..
Hi Guys,
There were two hollow phasers made for the 3rd season that had lights. There were two more made after the 4th season. The reason for some of the phasers to be hollow was that the actors thought it was to heavy. Others were to have a place to open to show inside. There were 2 different cobra head phasers. The first one was very rounded and not as symmetrical as they wished and a little to bulky on the head. The second was a cleaned up ver. of the first it was trimmed down as per the producers and propmasters.
This new ver. fit the holsters better and most of the phasers from 5 season on to the other shows were Lighter in weight.

HMS Mike
I recall a 4th season prototype phaser being made with the green LEDs and a bulb in the barrel. HMS Mike might remember this better than I, but I think it went to the show and we never got orders for it.

The only other handheld Starfleet Phasers with lights that I recall were boomarangs, one for the DS9 episode, "Hard Time" and the others for First Contact and Insurrection.
Thanks for the info guys. One last question. Do you know what colors the original 3rd season cobra head was painted? I was told that the first ones were not automotive colors (7173) and just regular old Krylon silver.
Pic of the hero Cobra from the 3rd season ep "Vengeance Factor"


hero Cobra gets a workout in "The Hunted"... Worf sets for Max Stun (which according to the power meter should vaporize half the saucer section :lol)


Roga Danar sets for overload


quick-thinking Worf saves the ship by deactivating an overload phaser (note flip-up hatch on the prop)


More open-face Cobra action from "Ensigns of Command"



Resourceful Geordi melts metal with his phaser in "The Enemy"... Note that the meter is only showing half power, and that it only lights up when LeVar presses the trigger.

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Thanks for all the screencaps and pics! Do you have anymore of the prop store phaser? I've been looking for those pics as I used to have them on my old drive but they're long gone now. It's my goal to create an accurate TNG hero phaser. I have a cast of that early body that I'm going to install electronics in.

On another note, I'm trying to determine whether the emitter of that phaser was actually a dark photo gray and not black. In these two pictures, the emitter looks to be gray:



I've really scrutinized these photos and it doesn't appear to be a trick of the light. They do look gray. But other phasers are definitely black. It does stand to reason that someone might have painted the emitter dark photo gray for the effects guys to track. As a completely flat black emitter might get lost. It's not the first time that's been done on props. But I want to get someone else's opinion or maybe some word from the horse's mouth.
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