USS Centaur • NCC - 42043


The USS Buckner was a ship I built while at Paramount working on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine for a little boy who wanted a Star Trek ship. Gary Hutzel saw the ship and asked if it could be featured in one of his upcoming episodes. I let Gary use the ship. He added the green fluorescent tape for windows and the pink fluorescent paint for engines. As this ship would now be a shooting model, a produced a second model which I sent on to the boy as promised.

When I designed the ship, I intended the scale to be based on the Reliant/Miranda bridge and roll-bar. The use of the Excelsior saucer and nacelle parts were convenient as the real world scale of the dish was smaller than the Reliant/Miranda/Constitution/Enterprise dish. It did, however, lead to an unfortunate mis-calculation of scale by the art department when they visited the motion control stage unescorted, and upon seeing the model, made the assumption that the scale should be based on these parts. A further confusion was made when in the making of several art department assets, specifically some books, they "corrected" a number of details without consulting VFX. The most notable "correction" was the bridge to match the dish.

The detail on this ship was enhanced when I knew it was going to be shot. I added additional greebles to the hull. The intent was to give the ship both a sense of scale (smaller rather than larger, so more greebles rather than a smooth hull) and to give it a sense of a ship that had been customized for its role as a deep intruder with additional detail for engine speed, sensitive long range scanning and increased stealth. This explains the bits on the rear of the dish and the tank treads littered around the dish's edge. And yes, the shuttle bay is a shuttle bay. There was no room for it in the rear.

I want to thank Alexander Richardson who made the schematic and customized it for me. Alexander can be reached at arpdesign +

I created two other ships during this period: the USS Jupp and USS Bradford. Neither reached the screen (that I know of), with the USS Bradford reportedly being a strong contender for screen time. It, however, became a fixture on one of the producer's shelves with neither a yea nor a nay until it was too late. I was told it was an accidental pocket veto.

When I get the time, I will post more images of all three of the ships.

More to come.