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Ryadra777
1 year ago

So Fractal, how the progress with the rack system so far?

Shaun
Shaun
1 year ago

Just peeked in the new(?) TIE Fighter ‘Haynes’ Manual. Couldn’t help but note the similarities with this… Was this based on the scheme presented there?

Sorican
Sorican
1 year ago

So… do those ladders telescope… or are their pilots having to clamber down that ladder…. all that way?

Seems kinda far to have to climb down in a scramble. on the other hand, I can’t imagine it retracts much more than that. (I also can’t help but notice how making it onto the ladder is almost suicidal. no uprights/handrails above the catwalk’s tread plate. but… this is the empire we’re talking about. Not like pilot safety is something they’re really concerned with.)

TheIcthala
TheIcthala
1 year ago
Reply to  Sorican

The ladders aren’t the primary method of boarding the fighters, they’re a way to get back up to the main catwalk in case of mechanical failure.
The platforms lower from the catwalk on the extending ladder sections, sliding from the top of their own ladder/rail to the bottom as it all smoothly moves. The usual method to get to a fighter is to stand on the platform, hold the rail, and push the right button.

Sorican
Sorican
1 year ago
Reply to  TheIcthala

Ah. That makes sense. Thank you.

Mr.T
Mr.T
1 year ago

Can’t wait to see it in sd’s.

heybuddy45
heybuddy45
2 years ago

So for landing, do the fighters return to a different hanger just for ships landing then tractor beamed onto the rack? Then the rail system goes into a central storage facility? Or do they return to the same hangar? I’ve always wondered this, I feel like dedicated landing hangars with a extensive track system would allow a carrier like the Impellor or dreadnaughts to quickly release a massive amount of fighters.

Roddimus
Roddimus
1 year ago
Reply to  heybuddy45

With that much seemingly redundant TIE storage per overhead launch track length, I think they don’t bother recovering most of the TIEs and just have them land underpowered at the nearest Imp base in the system guarded. One tactic of Star Destroyers is anti-capital tier force suppression; their fighters are an afterthought. Bear in mind, there is a big difference between pre-Endor fighter doctrine and post-Jakku, if we are getting that far ahead.

PhantomFury
PhantomFury
1 year ago
Reply to  Roddimus

While TIEs are certainly an afterthought under Tarkin Doctrine, an ISD is still expected to have its complement ready to deploy during engagements for some fighter screen or pursuit of smaller crafts.

CRMcNeill
CRMcNeill
2 years ago

So, if I’m picturing this right, the vertical columns on the overhead gantry have to be the physical connection points to the ceiling of the hangar bay, but for the rails on the TIE racks to be capable of widening out to fit larger craft, the vertical columns would have to be mounted on an /additional/ rail system, as well.

Also, how are you picturing the launch cycle? Is it conveyer belt style, with each ship moving forward to the leading edge of the grappler rail to get released, or do they simply get dropped from wherever their place is in the lineup?

CRMcNeill
CRMcNeill
2 years ago
Reply to  Fractalsponge

One thought that occurred to me was a rack system that was angled up ~30 degrees to give TIEs in the back more room to fly out under the ones in front of needs be. Not Imperial standard, obviously, but potentially useful on smaller ships with 1-2 squadrons.

Also on that note, I’m assuming this system could be miniaturized for use in smaller bays, with 3-4 rows of racks with capacity for 4 TIEs?

CRMcNeill
CRMcNeill
2 years ago
Reply to  Fractalsponge

How similar would the external racks on Carracks or Gozantis be to this? Obviously, the pilot access system would have to be completely different…

CRMcNeill
CRMcNeill
1 year ago
Reply to  Fractalsponge

I’ve often wondered if the Carrack might be better suited to unmanned TIE platforms, such as recon variant TIE Droids or the TIE/EX M4 Missile…

I had an idea similar to the Gozanti a while back, but based on a Sentinel chassis, with four external docks and one semi-recessed maintenance dock in the center, complete with a clamshell hatch to completely enclose it. I’d like to think that’s a better fit visually with the Empire than the Gozanti.

Daib
Daib
1 year ago
Reply to  Fractalsponge

We tend to like unmanned drones for this sort of thing, but the Empire has always been obsessed with putting a man in the loop, for whatever political/ideological/AI risk reasons. That’s why platforms like TIE scouts and the TIE/rc are a thing, while probe droids are only sent on one-way suicide missions.

On the Gozanti, it kind of seems like a spacefaring analog to the Benz G-class. The hull isn’t particularly Imperial, but it’s so damn cheap, rugged, and useful that every military regardless of political alignment is going to use it anyways.

Sorican
Sorican
1 year ago
Reply to  Fractalsponge

Gozanti’s were little more than giant hyperdrive sleds, at least as far as the fighter-carrier aspect of it goes.

Actually, it kind of reminds me of the ship-launched fighters some merchant ships carried in WW2- where they launched off of rails to go fend off a submarine that had surfaced for the attack- especially true given that the Gozanti is a transport ship ferrying supplies from backwater worlds.

from a combat perspective, it’s more something the rebels would find useful than the Empire, though, and anything that small would undoubtedly have the same problem the USS Macon and USS Akron had- they couldn’t carry enough mass to carry modern fighters. (The F-9c sparrowhawks were cut-down biplanes, because of weight.)

Delta 86
Delta 86
2 years ago

Will these be retrofitted into previous designs?

Cdr. Rajh
Cdr. Rajh
2 years ago

Hoh~? Its coming along beautifully! I will say, I expected a much simpler catwalk between the rails but this does not disappoint! What are you going to do with the finished product by the way? Slap it into the hangar of one of your ships? I think it would be nice to see a close-up of the Impstar with a hangar full of hanging eyeballs lol

Cdr. Rajh
Cdr. Rajh
2 years ago
Reply to  Fractalsponge

Ah I see, alrighty then.

Shaun
Shaun
2 years ago

Nice. I really like that it’s in keeping with the existing visual language of Imperial hangers–really grounds the almost organic character of the rails and arms and pulls everything together.

Was there a specific intent with each rail system having its own pair of truss/columns as opposed to the inner systems each sharing a single unit? Later would save on a bit of space (important!) but the former does lend some additional margin of error should something go wrong (super important!) (but also, not in keeping with Empire doctrine to have at least one significant design flaw in everything…!?!)…

spacejam45
spacejam45
2 years ago

Can a skipray blastboat fit in these racks? I’m thinking probably not but was just wondering.

Ryadra777
2 years ago

It look like it is almost done, what else is there to add Fractal?

CRMcNeill
CRMcNeill
2 years ago

Nice workaround on the Defender; I was picturing something that had to drop down vertically on top of the TIE. That’s a long climb down, though. LOL, maybe a fireman pole for combat launches.

Anthurak
Anthurak
2 years ago
Reply to  Fractalsponge

You know that fireman pole for combat launches got me thinking; What if there was a simple spool of wire overhanging the upper catwalk that a pilot could easily clip onto their flightsuit, then simply jump off the platform and basically fast-rope down to their fighter in a matter of seconds.

Obviously you’d still need the lift to get back UP, but it would make for a quick and easy way to get pilots to their fighters in a combat situation. Not to mention it would look pretty cool too 🙂

Anthurak
Anthurak
2 years ago
Reply to  Fractalsponge

Well this IS the Empire we’re talking about. Improving overall deployment efficiency at the cost of the occasional pilot shattering their legs sounds like a deal the higher-ups would have no problem taking.

I mean, these are TIE PILOTS after all.

gorkmalork
gorkmalork
2 years ago
Reply to  Anthurak

You’d likely be better-off just reducing or switching off deck gravity for a minute so pilots can drop or ‘swim’ to their cockpits with suit-fitted microthrusters.

Azron
Azron
2 years ago
Reply to  gorkmalork

I was thinking a motorized Handle and stirrup system similar to what they use in Gundam.

Cdr. Rajh
Cdr. Rajh
2 years ago
Reply to  Anthurak

I think the fireman pole idea is way too dangerous, just imagine sliding down into a small opening from the ceiling to a fighter that’s hanging at least a dozen meters off the ground, if you don’t get into the cockpit or if you aren’t careful enough you’ll be essentially falling from the ceiling of the hangar onto the floor, which I can only imagine to be an unpleasant experience for the pilot.. And possibly the cleanup crews…

Nathan Ridgway
2 years ago
Reply to  Cdr. Rajh

When Star Destroyers are stationary in a system, in orbit, or (as Rogue One revealed) hovering over a city, they have regular TIE patrols around the clock, so having a pole seems unnecessary. It might take the reserve pilots a moment to launch, but unless the patrol is going up against a pilot like Luke or Wedge, chances are good the reserve TIEs will have time to launch.

CRMcNeill
CRMcNeill
2 years ago
Reply to  Cdr. Rajh

I mostly threw it out there thinking that the access platform would already be down at the fighter’s level to facilitate the activities of the flight crew in preparing the fighter for launch, and would require precious time to lift back up, get the pilot and lower back down.

simplylively
simplylively
2 years ago

Would a lambda shuttle fit on one of these without the ladder? I know its not REALLY practical but just a thought.

PhantomFury
PhantomFury
2 years ago

Ooh that’s a neat system, though I might have something more in line with a straight/slightly sloped ladder (how it folds out…maybe it does like how it currently does but flattens as final articulation?) down the middle, as it’d allow the pilot to freely slide down all quick and in a hurry instead of sliding a bit, adjust for new section, repeat all the while worrying about smacking their elbow on the rack’s rails on the way down. Though this layout does permit better entry into the TIE.

Road Warrior
Road Warrior
2 years ago

That is quiet fantastic. Something about the grippers on the end of those arms bothers me though, do they make adequate contact?

Road Warrior
Road Warrior
2 years ago
Reply to  Fractalsponge

Agreed