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Travel pod

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Travel pod

Travel pod 05 leaving the orbital office complex

Travel pod interior

Travel pod interior

A travel pod was a small Federation shuttlepod predominately used during the 23rd century by facilities like the San Francisco Fleet Yards to transfer personnel to drydocks or spaceships without having to use transporters. These vessels had a flight crew that could include one pilot and up to seven passengers.

In 2272, Admiral Kirk traveled aboard travel pod 05 from the orbital office complex to the refitted USS Enterprise. (Star Trek: The Motion Picture)

In 2285, Sulu piloted such a vessel, carrying Kirk, Uhura and McCoy to the Enterprise for an inspection tour. (Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan)

The following year, the former crew of the Enterprise was transported to their new home, the USS Enterprise, aboard a travel pod while the Enterprise was still docked in Earth Spacedock. (Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home)



Background information

At least two travel pods that were numbered differently from those seen in the film have appeared in Paramount-licensed works. In early concept paintings that production illustrator Michael Minor created for The Motion Picture, a travel pod numbered "4" can be seen. (The Art of Star Trek, pp. 15-153, 168-169) The first edition of the Star Trek Encyclopedia had a diagram of a travel pod labeled 06.

In the book Ships of the Line (pp. 74-75), the travel pod was classified as a Mark II-B pod.

Studio model

Travel pod studio model worked upon by Chriss Ross

Ross working upon the travel pod studio model

USS Enterprise spacedock closeup

The miniature model of the travel pod (upper right)

The travel pod was designed by Andrew Probert, though he was ultimately not entirely satisfied with the craft's appearance. "I was sort of forced into that design solution," he explained. "I would have preferred something a little more 'Probertesque.'" [1] The actual studio model was eventually constructed at Magicam, Inc., where it was worked upon by among others model maker Chris Ross. Apart from the full scale studio model, a very small miniature was constructed to go with the drydock model, where it was seen parked inside the structure. As far as the main model was concerned, Chief Modeler Jim Dow has stated that the scale was 2"=1' (Starlog, issue 27, p. 30). The travel pods of The Motion Picture were filmed on one of Douglas Trumbull's stages at Future General Corporation. (The Making of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, p. 206) Preparing the travel pod studio model for filming involved Hoyt Yeatman and Alan Harding. (The Making of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, interior color photographs)

For its appearance in Star Trek IV, the travel pod model was refurbished and reused. (Trek: The Unauthorized Story of the Movies, p. 122) Model Shop Supervisor Jeff Mann stated, "We added a back half to [it]." (The Making of the Trek Films, 3rd ed., p. 68)

In its refurbished form, the model has escaped the 40 Years of Star Trek: The Collection and It's A Wrap! sale and auction auctions, and has been retained by Paramount Pictures as a tour exhibit display piece, having been on tours such as Star Trek World Tour, Star Trek: The Adventure and Star Trek The Exhibition as late as 2011. [2]

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