The Voyager PADD [17032007 0900]

This is the only PADD design I loved. The props measures 6 inch by 4 inch and has a thickness of about 12mm. Using those basic guidelines, I resorted to tracing the rest from the monitor/TV screen and using my best guess for the remaining dimensions, I got the shape done. Compared to Matt Munsons's and Roddenberry's, this is as close as I can get. Bear in mind that this is a very cleaned up version and does not resemble the actual prop. The actual prop, I think, is a one piece resin casting.


The Process

The Voyager PADD stands out form the rest due to its curves which made it look more functional. The construction of the PADD is quite simple as it only involves a few pieces of acrylic. But later on, I found out the hard way that cutting them by hand is quite difficult. But after years of looking for a local Laser-cutter, I finally got it done. Unfortunately, they used .DWG files which is alien to me.

I used Google's SketchUp software which lets me design the whole PADD. Once it is done, I used up their free 8-hour Professional version which lets you convert the file into the format the laser-cutter's computer can understand. I designed the prototype PADD in four layers because I wanted to test fit some electronics and also the battery system. As the thickness of the top and bottom layers have been defined, I only have 3mm of height to play with for the moment. But I have a guess that the final design would have about four to five layers since I will try to make a deep cavity at the bottom later for the batteries.

Gerry has written a very good manual on how to make your own TNG PADD but he also sells a wonderful working Voyage PADD, complate with working lights. One day, when I have the chance, I will get some PADD from them all and compare with mine to see how far off I am.

The design on SketchUp software

The PADD with transparent to show its layers

This is how it might look like when done

The four finished acrylic layers from the laser-cutters

Putting it together, it looks more like a PADD now

Here are the four acrylic layers

It looks much better in transprent and lit from the side

The thickness of the actual prop is about 12mm but mine is 10mm

OK, its sitting on the KIV box for now

To be Continued