Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

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jscott991
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Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby jscott991 » Wed Jun 03, 2015 3:05 pm

I know they are out of stock everywhere, so this is probably a moot question, but I wondered if anyone owned the Ad Astra Traveller minis, specifically the Imperial fleet box.

What's the quality? Ad Astra's Honor Harrington minis are great (I have hundreds), but I haven't actually seen a finished picture of the Traveller ones anywhere, just renders.

Also, are they really to scale? The smaller ships look pretty big next to the dreadnought in the renders they've shown. Is that really the scale in Traveller? I wouldn't have thought so based on the relative tonnages.
Last edited by jscott991 on Wed Jun 03, 2015 3:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby Easterner » Wed Jun 03, 2015 3:49 pm

http://www.adastragames.com/products/?c ... =Traveller

Most seem available here. Type S, AHL and Beowulf are pictured too.
jscott991
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby jscott991 » Wed Jun 03, 2015 4:03 pm

Those seem to be the "adventure" scaled ships (1:2500 v. 1:7200). It's strange there aren't any pictures of the any of the Imperial warships anywhere. This product has been out a long time.
ShawnDriscoll
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Wed Jun 03, 2015 4:21 pm

I guess one has to buy them first before a photo will be taken of one. No one is knocking down doors to get them though. They are not to scale. None of them ever were, no matter what company was making them at the time.
jscott991
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby jscott991 » Wed Jun 03, 2015 4:32 pm

I didn't think they were to scale.

The light cruisers looked huge next to the dreadnought in the renders they've put up.

I found a few discounted here and there (after tons of searching) and picked up the Plankwell from Ad Astra (at an inflated cost, but oh well). I will take pictures when I get them.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby Infojunky » Wed Jun 03, 2015 8:41 pm

The war ships are a vastly different scale than the Adventure Class ship's.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby jscott991 » Thu Jun 04, 2015 1:29 am

Infojunky wrote:The war ships are a vastly different scale than the Adventure Class ship's.
That's definitely true.

But I don't think the warships are to scale with each other. That's what I was curious about.

The heavy cruiser and the light cruiser seem too big compared to the dreadnought.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby Yatima » Sat Jun 20, 2015 1:00 pm

jscott991 wrote:But I don't think the warships are to scale with each other. That's what I was curious about. The heavy cruiser and the light cruiser seem too big compared to the dreadnought.
I wouldn't be so sure, remember that surface area increases by the square while volume increases by the cube, so ships with much greater volume won't increase in length, width or surface area by the same proportion.

I have all the ad astra minis, they are of excellent quality, though expensive. I may see if I can find dimensions for the in-game ships and measure the minis to see how they match up. They are 1:7,200 scale.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby GypsyComet » Sat Jun 20, 2015 7:57 pm

Yatima wrote: I may see if I can find dimensions for the in-game ships and measure the minis to see how they match up. They are 1:7,200 scale.
All you need is a displacement tonnage and a good digital scale, since displacement in this case will translate to mass of pewter.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby jscott991 » Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:41 pm

I now have the dreadnought, heavy cruiser, light cruiser and the Zhodani cruisers.

They can't possibly be to scale. The Azhanti Lightning heavy cruiser is nearly as big as the Plankwell. The Plankwell is supposed to be 200,000 tons with over 1,000 crew. The Azhanti Lightning is 60,000 tons with a crew of 635.

They aren't as far off as I initially thought from some pictures, but I don't think they are terribly accurate, especially because of how thin the Plankwell is.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby Yatima » Tue Jun 23, 2015 4:05 pm

jscott991 wrote:I now have the dreadnought, heavy cruiser, light cruiser and the Zhodani cruisers.

They can't possibly be to scale. The Azhanti Lightning heavy cruiser is nearly as big as the Plankwell. The Plankwell is supposed to be 200,000 tons with over 1,000 crew. The Azhanti Lightning is 60,000 tons with a crew of 635.

They aren't as far off as I initially thought from some pictures, but I don't think they are terribly accurate, especially because of how thin the Plankwell is.
You can't eye-ball stuff like this. As I mentioned above, the length, width and height of an object change counter-intuitively as you scale the volume. Let's look at the accuracy of the Azhanti High Lightning first as we have canon dimensions for that ship.

Accuracy of the Azhanti Mini
Classic Traveller Supplement 5, Page 5 states the Azhanti High Lightning Cruiser is:
- 60,000 dTons (840,000 cubic meters)
- Length: 405m
- Width: 61.2m
- Height: 36.4m
- (Fin adds 17m further to height)

At the stated scale of 1:7200 it should be 5.625cm long or 2.214 inches, which is very close match to the mini.

EDIT: I just measured the Azhanti mini with a Digital Caliper and it's 5.41 cm stem to stern so it's 0.215 cm off or about 15 metres off in scale terms – that's an error of just 3.7%. Not bad for a pewter casting process. It is as much to scale as it's possible for it to be. Q.E.D.

Comparison to a simplified Tigress dreadnaught
We have no dimensions for the Plankwell, but let's take a simplified Tigress class, and make it a sphere like the Deathstar ignoring the bumps on the back, we get a sphere that's:

diameter = 237.34 m
Volume = 500,000 dtons or 7,000,000 m3
Surface Area = 176.96 m2
Circumference = 745.62 m

At 500,000 tons, you'd expect it to dwarf the Azhanti – 500,000 / 60,000 dtons = 8.3 times larger – right? Not so much, here's a scale comparison:

Image

Volume increases by the cube, surface area by the square and linear dimensions don't get multiplied by these same factors, so the scale is going to look wrong because it doesn't match your intuition on scaling.

Don't trust your intuition, it doesn't do the math.

J

-----
I see someone's done a nicer illustration that includes both the Azhanti and Tigress as well as many other Adventure class ships to scale here:

Image

Found on Pinterest here: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/355432595566592816/
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby Yatima » Wed Jun 24, 2015 9:38 am

GypsyComet wrote:All you need is a displacement tonnage and a good digital scale, since displacement in this case will translate to mass of pewter.
It's a good thought but not accurate enough. dTons in traveller are a measure of volume not mass. 1 dTon is (depending on the source) 13.5mˆ3 or 14mˆ3. The mass of each dTon can then be approximated assuming an average mass per dTon, you'd then need some way to convert between the average mass of a given volume of ship and the scale mass of pewter in the mini. There are simpler methods.

As you can see above, knowing the ships are 1:7200 and given a canon length for the Azhanti High Lightning class, a simple measurement and scaling of the length of the mini is accurate enough.

J
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Wed Jun 24, 2015 10:53 am

Image

A dTon is always a volume of 1,000 Kg of liquid hydrogen. Nothing else.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby Yatima » Wed Jun 24, 2015 11:29 am

ShawnDriscoll wrote:A dTon is always a volume of 1,000 Kg of liquid hydrogen. Nothing else.
Volume is measured in cubic metres (or Litres) not Kg, the Kilogram is a measure of Mass, you are conflating two different but related physical properties.

The dTon is first and foremost a measure of volume (because it's purpose is a means of calculating the available space for deck plans). The mass figure of 1,000kg is derived from the volume based on the mass of liquid hydrogen, which is a common traveller fuel. However, it's an arbitrary figure, which was selected as a benchmark for the average mass per volume for ships, even though the actual mass would vary hugely across the various components of a ship.

As such, the figure of 1,000kg per dTon is of little use in judging the scale of the pewter mini, which was my point. Measuring it's actual size, calculating it's scale length and comparing it to the canon dimensions of the cruiser is the simplest and most accurate means of determining the scale accuracy of the mini.

Did you include the graphic to disprove my calculations? It doesn't. You'd need to do that with some calculations that show that 7,000,000 cubic metres can be enclosed with a sphere of a different size. You'd be arguing with the Square-cube law:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Square-cube_law

Good luck with that :)

J
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ShawnDriscoll
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Wed Jun 24, 2015 1:09 pm

Yatima wrote:Volume is measured in cubic metres (or Litres) not Kg, the Kilogram is a measure of Mass, you are conflating two different but related physical properties.
In the Traveller world, dTons are measured in Kg. Unless it's a typo for the last 38 years.
Yatima wrote:The mass figure of 1,000kg is derived from the volume based on the mass of liquid hydrogen, which is a common traveller fuel. However, it's an arbitrary figure, which was selected as a benchmark for the average mass per volume for ships, even though the actual mass would vary hugely across the various components of a ship.
I don't care about how much ship materials actually weigh. That's a whole other thing that isn't a concern in Traveller.
Yatima wrote:As such, the figure of 1,000kg per dTon is of little use in judging the scale of the pewter mini, which was my point. Measuring it's actual size, calculating it's scale length and comparing it to the canon dimensions of the cruiser is the simplest and most accurate means of determining the scale accuracy of the mini.
Anyone that knows what a dTon means, also knows the size of one. Some ships have more of them than others. Thus their different sizes, parked out in the void. It isn't rocket science, nor is it brain surgery.

The image just shows the scale of things currently (since GURPS Traveller). I don't think Traveller rules (or concept artists) much care for your calculations. Math is garbage when data entered is garbage also, anyway. If you are going to take the total dTonnage of Traveller ships literally, and plug them into a simulator of some kind, then all these ships need redoing from scratch.

Good luck with that.
Last edited by ShawnDriscoll on Wed Jun 24, 2015 1:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
jscott991
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby jscott991 » Wed Jun 24, 2015 1:30 pm

The Tigress is an ugly, ugly looking thing.

It's also a bit bizarre to imagine a state producing ships that look like the Plankwell and then suddenly changing their style completely.

Anyway, I stand corrected, no matter which calculation is correct. I guess the ships are reasonably to scale. It looks weird to have an obsolete frontier cruiser be essentially the same size as a state of the art dreadnought, but I guess it's accurate.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby ShawnDriscoll » Wed Jun 24, 2015 1:35 pm

jscott991 wrote:It looks weird to have an obsolete frontier cruiser be essentially the same size as a state of the art dreadnought, but I guess it's accurate.
The sizes are as accurate as the dimensions used by the authors of the splat books. The total dTons were guesstimates most of the time. Just like what Yatima is doing with the 14 cubic meters bit instead of using 13.5. It throws the numbers off just by changing the base value used.

Star Wars and Star Trek both deal with scale issues all the time, between concept artists and fan-made technical diagrams. So expect more of the same with Traveller minis.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby Yatima » Wed Jun 24, 2015 2:10 pm

ShawnDriscoll wrote:The image just shows the scale of things currently (since GURPS Traveller). I don't think Traveller rules (or concept artists) much care for your calculations. Math is garbage when data entered is garbage also, anyway. If you are going to take the total dTonnage of Traveller ships literally, and plug them into a simulator of some kind, then all these ships need redoing from scratch.

Good luck with that.
Ouch!

Look, Shawn, the conversation was started over the scale accuracy of a mini, which I've shown is to scale with a fair degree of accuracy. I wanted to show that you can't eyeball this stuff and make wild assertions about none of it being ever to scale. a few measurements and a few simple bits of arithmetic can prove something worthwhile.

I could start an argument with you over the difference between Mass, Volume etc, but what's the point. You're sore about this and hit back by saying, effectively "It's all ****, let me assert what i like!"

That's fine. I was only making a reasonable point. Let's agree to differ, then in the interests of civility?

Best

John
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby GypsyComet » Wed Jun 24, 2015 3:02 pm

Yatima wrote:
GypsyComet wrote:All you need is a displacement tonnage and a good digital scale, since displacement in this case will translate to mass of pewter.
It's a good thought but not accurate enough. dTons in traveller are a measure of volume not mass. 1 dTon is (depending on the source) 13.5mˆ3 or 14mˆ3. The mass of each dTon can then be approximated assuming an average mass per dTon, you'd then need some way to convert between the average mass of a given volume of ship and the scale mass of pewter in the mini. There are simpler methods.
It does work in this case because the castings are homogenous. A given mass of pewter maps directly to a given volume of pewter, and relative masses of pewter will have the same relationship between ships as relative dtonnage. If the Lightning was one-eighth the mass of the Tigress (60 vs 500) (for example), they would be roughly in scale.
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Re: Ad Astra Minis - Imperial Fleet Box

Postby Yatima » Wed Jun 24, 2015 3:26 pm

GypsyComet wrote:
Yatima wrote:[quote="GypsyComet"It does work in this case because the castings are homogenous. A given mass of pewter maps directly to a given volume of pewter, and relative masses of pewter will have the same relationship between ships as relative dtonnage. If the Lightning was one-eighth the mass of the Tigress (60 vs 500) (for example), they would be roughly in scale.
Hmmm, so just using the relative mass of the minis as a measure, that would work. It might be useful where there's no published dimensions for a ship, like the Plankwell and so many others. I may give it a go – not sure the kitchen scale will be accurate enough, though :)

John
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