Grates and Rails

Details moving in

Gangway-002aAdded grating, rails, and some more details.

I worked this weekend on filling in the upper railing and turning the entry platform into the grated variety. The smaller stair set down to deck 7 has been there all along, but now you can actually see it! 😀 I also thought I would try a foyer version where the lower hull’s concavity was obscured by some bulkhead or partition covering. This was mainly just to see what overall appearance it yielded, and I must say I rather prefer it to the previously wide empty space, even if the former provided me a nostalgic reminder of certain lobbies I’ve experienced in my past. However, it’s clear that the internal volume has been severely reduced and any means of circumventing the central platform on deck 7 is also lost. Since the only way to currently cross from one corridor to another on the lower deck is to climb up and over the central platform, I’m thinking I might have that specific section of grating, adjacent the entryway, rise up and out of the way while the gangway is not in use. I’ve also entertained the possibility, albeit slim, of making the entire central platform retractable, and making the lower stair sets mobile. One could complete the upper staircase and the other could still access the airlock. Still, this mobile-step concept gives me flashbacks of the more mundane shuttle bay landing scene early in Star Trek V (not to mention certain high school marching band activities).

I’ve yet to add any railings to the stairs or platform, but I’m still debating some minor shape modifications as I aggravate over the possibility of crew members head thumping on the deck 6 balcony as they step down to deck 7.

I put some wall labeling and other details here and there. Things are really still a bit dark, so I put some spots on the large deck labels. I’d surmise that this type of labeling isn’t common on the rest of the ship, but is very useful in this foyer area, since it is the first major interaction someone would have with the corridor system if they entered by gangway.

Gangway-003A different angle and added a little more grating around the airlock entryway.

Changing angles gives a better view of the stairs down to deck 7, but there are virtually no details or studio lights yet on the section visible to the far left. With that, and no alteration to the GI settings, many surfaces came out far less crisp than the previous render. Just changing the camera locale shortened the render time by an hour, but with bleah results. I’ll have to address those details and tweak those settings. I did spread out the platform there near the airlock entryway.

Gangway-001Oops. Added the rails and didn’t realize they were right in the way of the cool angle I’d been rendering from.

Someone on Scifi-Meshes has suggested the use of ramps verses stairs, especially in light of cargo that might be loaded through the gangway. Indeed, the drawing that inspired me, and that I actually used in my background as reference, presented ramps as the primary means of incline. He even suggested lifters of some sort, which I think is a valid point. Still, the exterior hatches are not particularly large, at least in terms of bulk cargo. Given that most ships have specific cargo loading procedures with very large access doors leading to dedicated storage bays, I don’t expect too much manifest to pass through this particular area, though quite a bit of smaller items could easily pass through. Though ramps are very useful, they loose effectiveness the steeper they get. With the specific height and placement of the involved decks and the limited amount of available volume (I am trying to be somewhat conservative here) it forced an awkwardly steep ramp up to deck 6. There wasn’t much wiggle room for stretching it out and the only direction allowed would interfere with the lower steps down to deck 7, so ultimately I chose the stairwell method. Taking into account the hull curvature that begins just under the upper stairs, it is possible some “variable gravity” situation exists in that small area, entirely dependent on active deck plating (or lack thereof) at those lower levels. Perhaps that could aid in the transportation of small bulk cargo (along with dedicated antigrav equipment) and ease any ramp concerns.

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~ by starstation on April 22, 2013.

7 Responses to “Grates and Rails”

  1. Outstanding 😀

  2. Wow….that is brilliant. Nice work.

  3. Very nice work! I love the “unseen” areas you create.

  4. Dude, Awesome!!!! I love how you solved this area. I just want to spend my time wandering around your starship!!!

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