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The Nebulon B: 24 frickin' fighters!?

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Prepping up to run the old WEG adventure Strike Force: Shantipole. It looks like the baddie's command ship is a Neb B, so I'm reading up on what's billed as a ship brimming with guns... and supposedly carries 24 starfighters somehow. Someone want to explain how that works? The two main arguments I've seen don't pan out with me:

  • Somewhere in front. We've seen a grand total of two of these things in the trilogy (one at the end of ESB, one during the Endor battle). Neither has anything that resembles a flight deck. Also an obvious problem of scale; when the Falcon is docked up to the one at the end of ESB, I don't get the impression they're even big enough for any kind of flight deck.
  • Connected to the spar. I can kind of buy this, but I see an obvious problem: carrying your fighters on the outside of your ship makes regular maintenance and repair on them a nightmare. Imagine if you had to strap on an EVA suit to change the spark plugs on your car... every day.

Has anyone seen a deck plan of one of these guys that makes some sort of sense?

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The Nebulon-B in the movies is one and the same ship - and it's a medical vessel that has been modified from its original role to care for the sick and the wounded of the Rebel military, so its original hangar bays may have been converted.

 

In the computer games, the Nebulon-B had a large hangar situated right in the front:

 

FRG_Implacable_TIE95.jpg

 

Better visible on the Modified Frigate variant (I tried to look for, but failed to find a picture of the original Neb-B with hangar bay open):

 

Neb-B2.jpg

 

The frontal structure should probably have a flight deck of sufficient size to hold about 24 starfighters, though perhaps not all on the same level.

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Prepping up to run the old WEG adventure Strike Force: Shantipole. It looks like the baddie's command ship is a Neb B, so I'm reading up on what's billed as a ship brimming with guns... and supposedly carries 24 starfighters somehow. Someone want to explain how that works? The two main arguments I've seen don't pan out with me:

  • Somewhere in front. We've seen a grand total of two of these things in the trilogy (one at the end of ESB, one during the Endor battle). Neither has anything that resembles a flight deck. Also an obvious problem of scale; when the Falcon is docked up to the one at the end of ESB, I don't get the impression they're even big enough for any kind of flight deck.
  • Connected to the spar. I can kind of buy this, but I see an obvious problem: carrying your fighters on the outside of your ship makes regular maintenance and repair on them a nightmare. Imagine if you had to strap on an EVA suit to change the spark plugs on your car... every day.
Has anyone seen a deck plan of one of these guys that makes some sort of sense?

Deckplan is located in the old WEG supplement The Far Orbit Project. Check the d6 holocron for more info. In there it shows the hanger on the forward starboard side, just like in the x-wing games and such, and it is sized such that it can cram 24 TIE fighters in on racks, 25 if you count the repair rack. Takes up most of forward deck 5.

That said

You are correct in that observation, if you use the closing shot in Empire, you can use the window to get a good estimate of the ships size, and (like many things star wars) the measurements that were originally recorded were in feet, but some editor changed it to meters without running the math, essentially tripling the ships size, and making the room.

Its a common problem with star wars, it was made for entertainment, not accuracy. Even the falcons interior set was made larger then the exterior. And the inability of editors to change feet to meters didn't help.

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As the above stated.  I was a moderator on the forums that was doing Model upgrades for the SW ships for a space flight sim game.  Using math it was really unfeasible to put a full sized hanger on the Neb-B.  But with the DOcking clamps used for a TIE fighter you could shoehorn them in rather compactly

 

Even the Darkstryder campaign has a heavily modified Corellian Corvette to act as a small carrier that holds, internally, 12 X-wings and 12 smaller fighters.

 

Personally I really would have liked Lucasfilms to have created a smaller dedicated "Pocket Carrier" that could hold a couple of squadrons and still be able to go toe to toe with a "Frigate" class

 

(don't get me started with the COMPLETLY messed up classing of starships in Star wars)

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As the above stated.  I was a moderator on the forums that was doing Model upgrades for the SW ships for a space flight sim game.  Using math it was really unfeasible to put a full sized hanger on the Neb-B.  But with the DOcking clamps used for a TIE fighter you could shoehorn them in rather compactly

 

Even the Darkstryder campaign has a heavily modified Corellian Corvette to act as a small carrier that holds, internally, 12 X-wings and 12 smaller fighters.

 

Personally I really would have liked Lucasfilms to have created a smaller dedicated "Pocket Carrier" that could hold a couple of squadrons and still be able to go toe to toe with a "Frigate" class

 

(don't get me started with the COMPLETLY messed up classing of starships in Star wars)

 

 

This is science fiction/fantasy. Complaining because you feel a ship is too small to do what the creators say it can makes little sense IMO and honestly the standard Neb-B isn't that powerful for a ship its size in setting. Of the frigate-size models operational in the era when the Neb-B was introduced that we currently have full stats for only five don't outgun the Neb-B. One of those wasn't built as a dedicated warship and is actually centuries older than the Neb-B, one of those is a pure anti-fighter platform, one of those is a carrier/assault transport hybrid, one is an armed cargo ship designed more to repel boarders than to fight warships, and the last is an Interdictor Frigate. Hell there's actually one frigate/light cruiser (Many light cruisers in Star Wars are actually frigates according to the in universe classification system.) model that predates the Neb-B by hundreds of years but an updated version substantially outguns a stock Neb-B. The large fighter compliment for its size is its main edge over other ships of a similar size to it.

 

And the meaning of ship classes changes all the time so how can the meanings used in a fictional setting be wrong?

 

Edit: I just looked it up and the escort carriers in World War II which carried roughly the same number of fighters as the Neb-B or more were typically less than half the length of the Neb-B. Given that most Star Wars fighters are VTOL capable and thus need much less space to launch than a WW II fighter I don't see how people claim that the Neb-B supporting 24 fighters is unrealistic.

Edited by RogueCorona

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Reality is often not very realistic.

 

When it comes to how the hell does that fit. I'd like to know how 12 fighters and 2 shuttles fit in a marauder

Edited by Plan b

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Nebbies are big ships, 300m length, 165m high and 75m wide, something like a Nimitz just to scale is 330m long, 75m high and I think about 40m wide- they carry around 80 aircraft which are much larger than little TIE's which are only about 7m square.

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Even the Darkstryder campaign has a heavily modified Corellian Corvette to act as a small carrier that holds, internally, 12 X-wings and 12 smaller fighters.

I'll post the graphic later, but I actually did the math and the farstar can carry the fighters and shuttles exactly as described in the books ( though I came up with slight more efficient ways of handling the shuttles....)

 

Reality is often not very realistic.

 

When it comes to how the hell does that fit. I'd like to know how 12 fighters and 2 shuttles fit in a marauder

Prolly about like this:

G_SFS_Marauder_SL_3.gif

Edited by Ghostofman

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you cannot just fill a ships volume with "hanger space" and call it good. Even modern carriers use less then half of it's internal space for the hanger deck.  For any sized hanger you need double that space just to support the hanger (shops, crew quarters, support, etc)

 

Also the problem with an internal Hanger is it structurally weakens the whole ship when you don't have a proper keel, or "spinal beam" to mount everything to

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This should answer the question, though perhaps not to one's satisfaction :) I prefer to think the same as HappyDaze, external racks.

 

Also note that the Nebulon-B we see in ESB (the Redemption) has been converted to a medical frigate, so is not in the original Imperial Navy configuration, and could reportedly only carry a handful of starfighters at any time. 

Edited by awayputurwpn

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There ARE carriers. There are also many, many ways to retrofit most ships with the capability to carry fighters. Rarely do you see any sort of ship combat without startfighter involvement, so something had to of transported them. 

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Layout of the Farstar's hanger. Note the shuttles are shown docked where the manual says they are typically docked, and I just guessed on the vehicles parked on the maintenance bay floor. I found docking the Aegis to the cargo lock on Deck 4 and the Muvon in between two of the docking tubes made more sense, at least in my head. And yes, the Defender fighters are idiotically small. All Fighters shuttles and vehicles (except for the SRVs) are from colonial chrome.

 

FarstarOuijaBoardDeck3.jpg

 

FarstarOuijaBoardDeck4.jpg

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A World War II Bogue-class escort carrier that was 151 meters could support 24 fighter and bomber craft. So I fail to see what anyone would have a problem with a 150 meter long Corellian Corvette like the FarStar being converted into a carrier for 12 fighters a shuttle, and a light freighter.especially given that Star Wars fighters need much less room to safely launch than World War II aircraft did  And in case anyone is wondering the frieghter and shuttle combined would be a little over the length of 5 of the smallest class of aircraft typically carried by a Bogue.

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Now I agree the front spar is a bit out of reach but I also think that you look at just the sheer size of the rear spar you could easily fit at least 12 fighters back there.  Also using the EU in the Wraith Squadron series they managed to mount a total of 14 fighters onto the ship.  There was a top hold that held I  believe three tie fighters and two of the escape pods were retrofitted to hold two more TIES (as most people forget the hatch of a TIE was back and above the engines not the actual ceiling).  The lower hold was designed to hold racks of 9 X-wings.  This was done using a rack system that allowed three fighters to launch at once lower or raise the next three and launch them.  However, unlike dedicated hangar bays in capital ships a lucky shot with a turbolaser or torpedo/missle could destroy the ship as they had to lower all the shields to launch.  

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Yeah, every Star Wars ship is like a TARDIS. I still remember the big debate over the Millennium Falcon's floorplan and how it couldn't conceivably fit inside the ship while still accounting for things like engines.

 

Considering that repulsorlift technology is supposed to be built on the containment of miniature black holes, it's not too much of a stretch to think that hangar doors warp spacetime to make bigger spaces inside or whatever.

 

Applying science, or even basic geometry, to Star Wars is just a headache waiting to happen.

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A World War II Bogue-class escort carrier that was 151 meters could support 24 fighter and bomber craft. So I fail to see what anyone would have a problem with a 150 meter long Corellian Corvette like the FarStar being converted into a carrier for 12 fighters a shuttle, and a light freighter.especially given that Star Wars fighters need much less room to safely launch than World War II aircraft did  And in case anyone is wondering the frieghter and shuttle combined would be a little over the length of 5 of the smallest class of aircraft typically carried by a Bogue.

A CVE had the ability to keep planes on the flight deck. It also would have alot more internal volume than a CR-90 corvette.

 

Still, it is an interesting comparison.

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It's been quite a few years so I can't remember specifically where I read this, but there was a mention somewhere in West End Games' material that the 24-fighter capacity of a Nebulon-B applied to TIEs only (presumably they had racks running along the ceiling as well as floor space). Once converted to hold Rebel Alliance starfighters the capacity dropped to 12 due to the difference in size, shape and weight. Take it for what it's worth.

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Also, I might add, the Nebulon is built with a lot of exchangeable modules. The entire front looks like a cargo ship with all the containers shoved into the structure, and if you look at the Temple class freighter (Parlemian Haul) that is basically an upside down nebulon, you find a lot more space to add modifications. In treat the Nebulon like those new phones where you can swap out seperate modules, but instead of better camera or a bigger charge you may add fighter decks or guns or passenger modules, or as done in the movies, swap everything for medical equipment.

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Honestly, that was one of WEG's WTF moments. Unless the starfighters in question are very very VERY tiny, there is no way to fit 24 of them on a Nebulon B. Look at the Falcon next to one in Empire. Nebulons are dinky! Unless the rebellion has mastered Time Lord technology, you might get some Jedi Starfighters onboard, but 20 X-Wings? Forget about it.

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Honestly, that was one of WEG's WTF moments. Unless the starfighters in question are very very VERY tiny, there is no way to fit 24 of them on a Nebulon B. Look at the Falcon next to one in Empire. Nebulons are dinky! Unless the rebellion has mastered Time Lord technology, you might get some Jedi Starfighters onboard, but 20 X-Wings? Forget about it.

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I like the idea of half or more of the TIEs being on the spar. The Neb we see in Ep. V is a medical ship. The original or carrier version may look quite different. Thus, there is the starboard hangar as pictured above. But, that spar has also always bugged me. Why are the two sections so far apart other then it looks cool? As we've seen before, that spar can dock ships externally. Perhaps that is not an add-on purpose but the original purpose. Imagine a double rack of TIEs along that spar with a conveyor belt into hatches on the rear of the front section. So there's an internal hangar, but also a storage spar behind the flight deck.

 

Larger ships such as X-wings would probably take up at least double the space as a TIE whether on the spar or in the bay.

Edited by Sturn

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