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The Fleet Ship designs, strategies, and tactics.

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Old July 1st, 2012, 12:03 PM
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Question Starship Yards and Ownership Issues

So I 'm a newly appointed sovreign of a prosperous world and I purchase a shipyard. Sure I can do maintenance on ships passing through, given I can find the right spare parts, but can I legally build ships who's designs I dont purchase? Must I buy a franchise from one of the many ship builders who's names are houshold terms? Can I only build ships designed by my franchiser or can I purchase multiple?

I'm driving home the other day and pass a car dealership I've passed dozens of times and it makes me wonder ... Why don't ships in Trav have brands and are available only at selected locations? Shouldn't you have to take your ship to an authorized dealer for maintenance?

Mega and not so mega corporations must have their own lines of ships, designed by corporate architects on corporate salaries, that are only available and supported by corporate licensed shipyards. But there isn't any distinction in the OTU. It appears the intellectual property of the corporation fades into public domain very quickly. Explanation?
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Old July 1st, 2012, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Ran Targas View Post
So I 'm a newly appointed sovreign of a prosperous world and I purchase a shipyard. Sure I can do maintenance on ships passing through, given I can find the right spare parts, but can I legally build ships who's designs I dont purchase? Must I buy a franchise from one of the many ship builders who's names are houshold terms? Can I only build ships designed by my franchiser or can I purchase multiple?
Some designs are not under copyright. The ones that are you can't build without permission.

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I'm driving home the other day and pass a car dealership I've passed dozens of times and it makes me wonder ... Why don't ships in Trav have brands and are available only at selected locations? Shouldn't you have to take your ship to an authorized dealer for maintenance?
Starships are much more akin to ocean-going vessels than to cars.

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Mega and not so mega corporations must have their own lines of ships, designed by corporate architects on corporate salaries, that are only available and supported by corporate licensed shipyards. But there isn't any distinction in the OTU. It appears the intellectual property of the corporation fades into public domain very quickly. Explanation?
The shipbuilding rules are very broad, above the level of detail that distinguishes one ship class from another with the same performance specs. If you (as a PC) wanted to build a Tukera Longliner, I would (as a referee), require you to pay a naval architect to design the Ran Targas Longliner, but I would cheerfully let you use the specs for the Tukera Longliner. I'd even let you use the deckplans, although I'd like it better if you made some cosmetic changes to them.


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Old July 1st, 2012, 01:40 PM
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Actually, Hans, copyright would only protect the plans, not building ships from them... that would be patent.

And the Vilani patent system has been described in various ways - my preferred term for it is "excessive durations."

But ISTR references that the 3I doesn't enforce IP laws...
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Old July 1st, 2012, 06:42 PM
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Some time ago I worked indirectly for a major auto maker’s spare parts organisation in Europe. Several brands, numerous models and model years, a dozen countries. Some parts would, after a time, be superceded. Sometimes the same part, from the same factory, would be packaged a number of different ways (with different pricing) because some customers will pay more for ‘genuine’ parts while others are satisfied by a ‘generic’ part. The internal catalogue numbers (that amalgamated all the brands) literally ran into millions.

This opened my eyes to the potential nightmare that any large empire in Traveller must face. If the 3I operated IP laws like the modern day western world then it would seriously struggle to grew larger than a few subsectors. A sector is probably the uppermost limit.

I did flirt with the idea of branding common starships as if they were cars once (had ships like the “LSP Suleiman 1100” Scout/Courier) but now I play it different. At least for some things. My answer was Imperial Design Packages from the MOT. You could still buy a Serpent class Scout/Courier from Delta Shipyards if you wish, or buy a generic Suleiman class Scout/Courier from anyone. But they would both use standardised parts.

In other areas, given the size and age of the 3I, media copyright laws similar to those imposed against us today, are largely impractical. In fact some of the more draconian laws in recent times are the result of an industry not adapting properly (or in a sufficiently timely fashion) to new ‘disruptive’ technologies. But the 3I encompasses a wide range of technologies ... so such a ‘culture shock’ won’t occur in its business executives. Region coding (for example) won’t exist (it’s an impediment to free trade), but on the other hand government-mandated censorship for all manner of reasons will exist to varying degrees on individual worlds.
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Old July 1st, 2012, 07:51 PM
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That is why my understanding of "standard type" was "standard" type, as is Liberty ship been "standard" ship design.

It is tempting for a builder or a buyer to have that little extra fitted on a ship. No problems for some fittings (cargo handling, passengers accommodations, software...etc). I would be a nervous free trader if I bought a patented wonder gizmo that allows my ship to operate wonders, but that is unavailable anywhere else in the universe because the patent owner refuse to sell licenses.

The only way for a free trader (or a yacht, to refer to another tread) to economically operate away from its building planet is to be built using as many "universal" parts as possible, or at least parts whose CAD/CAM data are stored on the ship's computer for downloading to a NCFS (Numerically Controlled Fabrication Systems) of fairly common standard. Otherwise, repairs would require the substitution of whole systems or subsystems by locally built equivalent. Sometime a "clone" card may do it cheap for your computer, sometime a whole new engine may be required.

Most likely, your yard would use public domain material unless a client require some item available only through licensed production. At that point you just purchase the goodies from the licensed manufacturer. As for the rest, don't bother, your highness, leave that to the folks of the IP department, that is why you pay them. The ship pricing system was always crude anyways

BTW, Currently very few yard produce ships as speculative venture. Before WWII some yards produced "standards" economy tramps to keep themselves busy, hoping (usually rightly) to sell them before they rolled of the slip. Liners are usually on order for they are adapted to specific market, while tramps play for average or modal trade patterns. Still, nothing prevent your universe from having whatever suit your game.

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Old July 1st, 2012, 09:11 PM
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Which brings us to another threat:

Standardization is the key for the survival of any interstellar community. Ships and other products built on other worlds need to fit your gizmo no matter where you are. Without it, it's just a peice of junk waiting to be tossed out the airlock before entering jumpspace. without the ability to repair said gizmo, it's really nothing more than expensive paperweigh until you can find the parts to replace it. Consumers of such items are not going to buy said gizmo or starship based on this reason alone, they'll want to be able to repair at a reasonable tech level. So Trade goods would normally be of average tech level for the 3I.

Military items and ships are a different matter completely.

Now, think about this (Another tie in to another thread):

Shipyard B is at Class B starport building hulls for a customer. The salesman sold this unwary buyer a Jump capable ship. So do you do the dishonest thing or do you send for a Jump Drive from a Class A shipyard?

The question here is if Class B shipyard are limited to what type of ship they can build, can't they just import the necessary parts from a class A shipyard, then install them? Which changes the rules in Traveller....
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Old July 1st, 2012, 11:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rigel Stardin View Post
Shipyard B is at Class B starport building hulls for a customer. The salesman sold this unwary buyer a Jump capable ship. So do you do the dishonest thing or do you send for a Jump Drive from a Class A shipyard?

The question here is if Class B shipyard are limited to what type of ship they can build, can't they just import the necessary parts from a class A shipyard, then install them? Which changes the rules in Traveller....
I, for one, have never liked the linking of starport and shipyard. I usually have several of each at each system IMTU. A class B or even C shipyard *could* build a jump-capable ship if it was a small one and the customer was willing to take their time. IMTU TL in the Phoenix Empire is closer to 13-15 except in the rim worlds so repairing or building an FTL drive is relatively within their means, and to become even a Member world you need at least 1 billion in population this means that most worlds except for the rim have the technology and population to deal with a shipyard.

I use A-E for starports meaning size and comfort and A-E meaning size and capabilities of a shipyard.

But this is my take, not anybody else's. Though they can have it if they want it, it's clogging up my brain.
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Old July 2nd, 2012, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DangerousThing View Post
I, for one, have never liked the linking of starport and shipyard. I usually have several of each at each system IMTU. A class B or even C shipyard *could* build a jump-capable ship if it was a small one and the customer was willing to take their time. IMTU TL in the Phoenix Empire is closer to 13-15 except in the rim worlds so repairing or building an FTL drive is relatively within their means, and to become even a Member world you need at least 1 billion in population this means that most worlds except for the rim have the technology and population to deal with a shipyard.

I use A-E for starports meaning size and comfort and A-E meaning size and capabilities of a shipyard.

But this is my take, not anybody else's. Though they can have it if they want it, it's clogging up my brain.
Yours is actually similar to mine.

For me, an A port could build any size of anything, while a B could build up to, say, any size spaceship and up to 600 tons of starship, while a C couldn't build starships but could build up to 1000 tons of spaceship and a D could build small craft.
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Old July 2nd, 2012, 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Jame View Post
Yours is actually similar to mine.

For me, an A port could build any size of anything, while a B could build up to, say, any size spaceship and up to 600 tons of starship, while a C couldn't build starships but could build up to 1000 tons of spaceship and a D could build small craft.
Is there a fundamental difference between a spaceship and a starship other than the presence of a Jump drive? If not, why would a particular ship yard be able to build, say, a 1000 ton boat, but not a 1000 ton ship? The size of the hull doesn't seem to matter in my thinking, does it? It's the ability to install a J-Drive and its related electronics. Yes?
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Old July 2nd, 2012, 12:51 PM
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I had always kind of assumed that the standard drives listed in CT LBB 2 were pre made engines. You could always get parts and a replacement engine for them if needed, almost any where, might have to order and wait 30 days for delivery or such.

I also figured that only a Class A starport had any type of true building/manfacturering faucilities. The others only could rebuild or make generic type ships.

Class A could make any ship, even one of kind.

Of course some places have a ship building yard besides the Class A, B, or C space port.

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