Library Computer: Review of Haynes Star Trek USS Enterprise Owners Manual

In this installment, the Library Computer investigates the latest edition to the Star Trek technical guide family, the illustrated Haynes "U.S.S. Enterprise Owners’ Workshop Manual". By the time you study this book, you’ll not only know the difference between a phase inducer and a plasma phase regulator, but you’ll know how to perform preventative and emergency maintenance on both… right?


REVIEW: Star Trek Haynes – U.S.S. Enterprise Owners’ Workshop Manual

Ben Robinson and Marcus Riley
Technical Consultant Michael Okuda
Gallery Books – November 2010
Hardcover, 160 pages (w/ color illustrations) – $27.00

Visit just about any Star Trek message board, and you will inevitably find discussions that center around the technology of the Star Trek universe. One often heard fan discussion is the bemoaning over the lack of any new Trek technical manuals. Given Haynes’ history of detail in their automotive manuals, the announcement of their collaboration with Gallery Books for a "Enterprise Workshop Manual" gave fans optimism.

Visually the new “U.S.S. Enterprise Owners’ Workshop Manual” does not disappoint. The book provides a gorgeous layout rooted in the Next Generation style and it provides page after page of glorious color. The book, presented from an in-universe perspective, dedicates seven sections to different Enterprises: NX-01 (Enterprise), NCC-1701 (original Star Trek), NCC-1701-A and refit (TOS movies), NCC-1701-B (Generations), NCC-1701-C (TNG), NCC-1701-D (TNG), NCC-1701-E (TNG movies). There are also additional sections covering various types of Star Trek technology and science (like transporters or warp theory).

All the other ships get detailed illustration images, with the greatest detail for the original Enterprise , and the Enterprise D and E. Some of the more interesting illustrations are related to the ships’ subsystems. However fans of the new Star Trek movie will be disappointed that the new U.S.S. Enterprise only gets a brief mention and stock photo in a section on alternative universes. It is particularly missed on the otherwise cool size comparison chart in the Appendix.

While the new cutaway drawings created for the manual and all of the new art are of high quality, some of the choices made by the writers and editors come across feeling like filler. Take, for example, pages 110-111, where two-thirds of both pages are dedicated to four images of the saucer separation sequence of a Galaxy class starship. Also the book contains a number of screenshots from the series, and many (particularly from the early seasons of TNG) are of poor quality.

Unfortunately the text that accompanies the illustrations doesn’t always match in quality. While providing a moderate-level examination of topics such as impulse engine technology, faster than light propulsion, transporter operations, and deflector shield technology, the remainder of the text is spent on providing either brief summaries of the missions of the various starships Enterprise, or on giving tours of the Enterprise which readers will, ultimately, wind up taking in their minds.

Far from the in-depth information given by Michael Okuda and Rick Sternbach in the “Star Trek: The Next Generation Technical Manual”, and with far less interest and imagination than the Franz Joseph “Star Trek Star Fleet Technical Manual”, the Haynes manual glosses over the technical material in the guise of a historical recollection of what made each vessel unique. After reading the Okuda/Sternbach manual, one had the sensation that they had just finished a Starfleet Engineering Academy primer on starship engineering and operations. The original Star Trek technical manual, while answering few questions, made fans feel like they knew the inner workings of Starfleet technology. The “U.S.S. Enterprise Owners’ Workshop Manual” feels more like a middle-school history book written ten to fifteen years after the conclusion of the Next Generation movies.

Ultimately, the choice of buying this book will rest upon the reader’s main desire – are technical diagrams and gorgeous pictures of ships the priority, or is one looking for detailed information on how to discern the difference between an EPS tap and a phaser control junction? Those looking for the latter will be disappointed. The Haynes U.S.S. Enterprise Owners’ Workshop Manual is a fine addition to your Star Trek reference bookshelf, but that elusive great new Star Trek technical manual is yet to come.

U.S.S. “Enterprise” Manual is available now at Amazon and

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Gallery Books provided TrekMovie with a copy of this book for review.


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Bagged one of these over the weekend on eBay.
It does look good.

The Enterprise. When the designers were actually trying to design a ship in a practical sense instead of “turning it into a Hot Rod thing”. Yeah, your hot rod has a clay floor brewery while this 60s Enterprise has everything built from scratch.

@2 *sigh*

@ Jeyl

Dude, that was totally lame. Who cares if it actually works, it’s a tv show. BTW you do know this site was started to release news about the NEW star trek movie and has since then branched to cover all aspects of trek.

The book, I think, overall is a nice addition to the large library of TREK books.

As to slighting the movie, I didn’t find that too troubling. After all who wants a “brewery” engineering diagram polluting this book? Seriously, how many of you think that Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto…. and dare I say it, the “supreme court,” and the rest of the acting crew will actually remain aboard the franchise beyond one or two more movies?

Frankly, I prefer TREK on the small screen unless Paramount can find a way to step up the pace of production AND do more personal, less ‘let’s save the galaxy’ type stories.

The book does a excellent job of illustrating TREK, but I did find the text a bit disappointing, offering little new to us readers. That said, I still recommend the book and would, if assigning a grade value, give it a B.

Thanks for the very informative and helpful review. I hadn’t made up my mind about this book until now, but thanks to the info in the review I’ll buy now.

It’s a nice book with some interesting articles (about the lesser known Enterprises B and C) and summaries of the informations from the previous technical manuals. The work they put into the sections for the NX-01 and the TOS-Enterprise are the best parts of that books. New great pics and photos from the brdige and other rooms. Sad, they don’t made the same efforts for all seven Enterprises. Only the Enterprise-D get a better section, but Enterprises A, B, C and E are treated like stepchildren compared to the NX-01 or even the Enterprise-D. The fact, that they left out the new Enterprise is not all too disturbing, because it would have been a complete break with the overall design and look of things.

The cutaways are rather useless. There’s no description about what is what and technical informations about the improvements of every Enterprise are very very thin.

Conclusion: A nice addition for the bookshelf with a great layout and design, but nothing compared to the technical manuals from past decades and far from the quality the cross-section books from Star Wars had provided.

Have to agree with the review. I liked the orthographic drawings of each ship, but everything else was a bit thin and I was extremely disappointed in the text. No “meat,” as it were, almost all filler…

I have the book. My main disappointment is the cutaways.
Not enough cutaways of various areas of the ship (s), and no real interesting text to go with it to explain things of interest on said cutaways.

I was hoping for more of a ‘blueprint’ style manual, rather than what I got.

I’d give this book a B minus.
Good for collectors, but nothing spectacular.

Any chance that this will come on CD-ROM or as a download? The Technical Manual and Omnipedia are still among my most favorite Trek readings. They offered graphics, animations, texts, and more that were outstanding. The Okudas did a fantastic job on those.

@ 2: “Yeah, your hot rod has a clay floor brewery while this 60s Enterprise has everything built from scratch.”

this 60s original has plywood, plastic, paint and tape, among other components used to construct the sets on a soundstage. you do realize neither is real? it’s all amazing entertainment! we are so lucky to have more star trek.


Y’know its exciting!

No really. THAT SHIP ROCKS!!!!!! Even after all these years.

Can we please see the Constitution Class starship again on the silver screen?

I don’t care if the next movie’s cast has to time travel to 1966 to watch the first episode of Trek being filmed in order to stop the “Temporal Distortion” caused by a leak of Federation records sent to the “Great Bird of the Galaxy” by some misguided overzealous half-Romulan Federation scientist. The new Scotty would surely be amazed at all of that ship’s details.

I want our TOS Constitution Class ships back onscreen!!!!

By the way, Kirk was full of hot air sometime (Corbomite), but he NEVER needed reserve tanks.

Even though it’s disappointing there’s not much about the new movie Enterprise…. Ohhh yeah. I WANT!

I actually would’ve loved to see a cutaway of the new E — imagine you caw the blueprints for Engineering and it turned out they made perfect sense? :)

@3, 4, 11: Just don’t even bother. Jeyl is our resident dog-in-the-manger. Let him be a misery off by himself…


LOL. Sorry, you’re getting beat up.

The problem I think a lot of fans have with the new interpretation of the Enterprise is that it doesn’t seem a lot of thought went into how things actually fit and work on the new version. It just has a, “Hey, this will look cool so let’s put this here.” Kind of feeling about it.

I enjoyed the film nonetheless, but I look at it as what it is: A new interpretation. Doesn’t make it right or wrong, just different.

Another book to scare the chicks away with when they see this on your coffee table with the rest of the other technical Trek books!


My fear about New E cutaways is that it would make even less sense, much like Irwin Allen ships. And I kinda like the New E on the outside.

@2, 11, 15, etc.

I think the point he was making is the TOS-crewed Enterprise focused on evolving a believable ship, culminating in bunked crew quarters and a pan-laiden galley a la WWII submarine flicks. I’m in agreement with those who were disappointed in Abrahm’s “Speed Racer” Enterprise for that reason — he was more focused on entertainment value than believability. That said, when I ask myself how well a new movie would have done using the original Enterprise on the big screen, I understand *some* of the decisions that were made. Still, I think they could have done w/o the brewery sets…

@5: “Frankly, I prefer TREK on the small screen unless Paramount can find a way to step up the pace of production AND do more personal, less ‘let’s save the galaxy’ type stories.”

Hear, hear! I love most of the casting in Trek XI (Scotty not so much), but I’m disheartened at the idea of waiting 2-3 years between installments. Surely Paramount can pull together a new series with BG-esque production value and character development? Just make sure Berman doesn’t get involved. ;-)

Anyone else notice the difference with the UK cover? It looks a bit more “authentic” with the more prominent Haynes logo.

More Haynes manuals are shown on the Amazon UK page — The Space Shuttle, Apollo 11, Wallace & Gromit…

An Akira class starship was seen in the movie First Contact, but then the same design was used for Archer’s Enterprise. So according to Star Trek’s chronology, in the late 24th century starship designers decided to use an old 22nd century design for their latest starship. Why did they do that? I wish this Owner’s Manual would deal with that. It seems strange they’d be reusing such an old design 200+ years later.
There may be plenty of non-obvious, internal differences between Archer’s Akira-Enterprise and the Akira class ship from the movie, but we aren’t told of any, are we?

@ 18: “Still, I think they could have done w/o the brewery sets…”

i am not an engineer, but the water tubing and turbine system made sense to me. i agree about other elements not fitting in so well. and the exclusion of a central warp core went against established design.

I’m having second thoughts my comments above. I don’t know if many others think the designs are too similar, but it would still have been nice to have it dealt with. After reading this review here, I’d look at it for a few minutes at the library, but I don’t feel like buying it.

I saw this in a shop today and gave it a five minute browse. It is no TNG or DS9 tech manual, but I quite liked it. Where as everyone is worried that it doesn’t contain loads of random, fictional data (you have the other books for that), it would be ideal for a beginner Trekker, as many of my friends are.

I may consider buying it.

Still hoping for the USS Voyager tech book though. :P

The fact is that the time frame for the new movie was mid 23rd century and it is Star Trek not Steam Trek. Fermentation vats and storage tanks do not make and engineering section just because they didn’t want to spend the money on sets and call it “realistic”. Many have used the excuse it was an alternate universe and this explanation doesn’t cut it either when the technology for some things would be so archaic and other things were not. Its not logical. Lets hope when the new film comes out they will have corrected these flaws that were so glaring when the film came out. The use of green screen and CGI would could have made the film a great deal more futuristic.

@11: this 60s original has plywood, plastic, paint and tape, among other components used to construct the sets on a soundstage.

While it may look cheap and unpractical, there’s no denying that the design of the sets was always consistent in that you could easily relate one area to another. Transporter room, the bridge, engineering and even the corridors all had the same look, but were different in their own way. Unlike going from an obvious practical location to very fancy bridge set with more electronics and lights than all other bridges put together. Sure, sets don’t make the movie good, but no one ever said they can’t help add a lot to the look. And when we’re dealing with a budget of over 150 million and they cut back on the set pieces to the freaking Enterprise, I think she was short changed.

And to all of those who say “it’s a tv show” and “you do realize neither is real?” I say…. so what? You’re not adding anything to your argument if all you want to do is rely on the obvious. Don’t think that just because I go into this a little more seriously than you do means that I’m full of delusions that Star Trek is real….which as an entertainment franchise it is. :P

@15: “I enjoyed the film nonetheless, but I look at it as what it is: A new interpretation. Doesn’t make it right or wrong, just different.”

Which is why my posts are what they are. Opinions. God forbid anyone have a personnel taste that doesn’t match their own.

Very disappointed that the new movie Enterprise was left out in this book. That was really the only reason I purchased it. Oh well… at least it’s a hard-copy of what every other Trek site already offers.

I so glad they left the ugly new Enterprise out of this!

Now that I know that, I will buy this-

Saw it in the store. It’s actually not very detailed at all. And yes it’s missing the modern Enterprise.

i liked the new ST09 enterprise…….to me i was always attracted to the design part of ST (and sci-fi in general) and probably why i’m an architect today (and not an engineer)….my favorite enterprise is the D (post season 1, and secretly love the st generations bridge refit), then the 1701 refit (TWOK) and those were big departures from the ST:OS ship and design

the enterprise ’09 had so many nice nods to the original while still feeling fresh…..i loved how it was a mix of the ST:OS tv show and movie designs, like it had a detached deflector dish but was it blue this time not gold…..and all you pple do realize that all this technobable (alla RDM) is made up and just used (and made up) as plot devices right? i dont care who said the RAND corp designed the D based on ‘real science’ in 86, its still all make believe, and who seriously gets upset over make believe?

even steven hawkings (who was on ST:TNG) could enjoy an episode and just laugh silently whenever the enterprise went into warp, cause its scientifically invalid to travel like that….frak BSG’s FTL is more real science and RDM tried to stay away from that stuff.

i’ll conceit that the enterprise 09 engineering was a miss, but technically (lol) we were never in “main engineering”, so they can always make a set for scotty in ST2, but the hanger bay, the corridors, the med bay, the bridge….all very sexy, all very mac based lol……ST09 will always be my #2 fav st movie (after TWOK), cause it reignited my love for ST in me for the first time since 1994 when TNG had their finale ‘all good things’


Count me among the Generations bridge fans… it maintained some of the best of the TNG appearance while incorporating some sensible alterations that made the venue a much more interesting space.

Myself, however, in terms of ‘credibility’, well, the Star Trek V / VI layouts (omitting the 99 decks) seemed to me to strike the right balance of things. They looked like real control centers of real ships, and the ships themselves looked right internally.

I have found that, in my opinion, ST I, II, and III were shot too darkly, as was most of the first season of TNG. I totally agree that TNG found its visual groove in season 2, which was about the time the lighting issues got solved. The lighting scheme went a long way to make the TNG Enterprise feel accessible.


I get Jeyl’s (#2) comments. The original was a set, built on imagination, whereas for whatever reason the movie (with an enormously larger budget) went with a brewery, for heavens’ sakes, as a set. Sorry, I’ve watched Trek ’09 a number of times and am trying to get the new E to grow on me, but it’s just not happening. To each his own, I suppose.

So, it’s basically reprints of stuff that was in that old Star Trek Magazine from a dozen years back? Pass.

This looks like a great addition to my other books. I’m on the fence about the new E. Too many things about it — its overall size, for example– are not entirely clear. If they could get the plans for the beer factory and CAD that they could probably fit it in this book, but then that section wouldn’t mesh with their bridge or transporters. Who could guess on the size relations of that hanger bay? Anyway, good looking book. They went with what looked right rather than designing a cohesive whole. You can’t have everything.


correct me if i am wrong, weren’t the filmmakers attempting to replicate current naval vessels by creating a transition from top to bottom? naturally, the upper decks would present more livable areas, with each progressively lower deck taking on a more utilitarian feel. as i said, it makes sense to me.

I like that the new movie Enterprise is pretty much missing from the book. That ship should remain new and exciting for us. It’s too soon for all the specs and blueprints to be revealed.

If most of the book is based on TOS, I’ll buy it, love the examples given in this article. 24th century Tech leaves me cold. Loved JJ’s stuff though…aside from the ridiculous domed transporter pads. You have to stand on them…shouldn’t they be FLAT? Cool book. I’ll buy it.

36. “It’s too soon for all the specs and blueprints…”


Load us up baby…Convince me that it is OK to have beams and docks stacked in the hangar bay, and show me why…

Ah, we can just retcon the 1701-alt’s brewery-looking section as all being Dideuterium Monoxide (DDMO) processing and refining. Because the 1701-alt is SO much larger, it requires supercooling of many functions that involve radiation. DDMO is a natural at absorbing both heat, and stray neutrons. Thus, the large vats of circulating and such.

And, we can simply determine that the fancier Engineering Control Room of the type Scotty had on the ur-1071: there wasn’t time to finish those yet, so you had to work around the giant DDMO processing tanks.

Works for me. Retcon. Solves all problems.


Clearly, you’re not hanging out with the right kind of chicks!

40: Yeah, but there’s so FEW of the right kind, you have to drop your standards sometimes!

What CD came out that you could explore different starship bridge configurations, including TOS-1701, the Defiant, and at least 1701A and D? I have it here somewhere…. on the classic bridge, if you ‘sat’ at Scottys bridge station, there were some games loaded on his console, I think Pong and Tetris…
Also, if they do a Trek Series, I think it should be set in the timeline of the current Star Trek Online game – which is some time after Picard, which precludes any guest visits. And please – NO Q!!!! (I like JDL but not Q)

can’t bevieve they ignored the new Enterprise.

I can’t wait to get it-It looks COOL.

The ST09 Enterprise is far too unexplored for the publishers to dare committing possible inaccuracies and differences to print.

#42- As I recall, the name of that CD was “Captain’s Chair”

I should admit, I’m not the biggest fan of the brewery set.

I like the attempt and concept more than the execution — my problem with it is there’s no focus to it. Like the TOS engineering set, your eye is drawn towards those massive rows of conduits that go off into the distance; the movie and later series all had the big glowing warp core that dominated the set.
If you look at Ryan Church’s amazing concept art for engineering, you’d see they wanted to do the same thing — which I hope they do in the next Trek.
Keep the expansiveness of the brewery location, but dress it up more, possibly edit out some of the more confused tangles of pipes, and digitally add some sort of big blue glowy thing that goes “rumble” that the eye can focus on. Call it a mini-refit. :)

@30 Sean

Where and when was BSG’s FTL ever explained in any detail (outside of a tongue-in-cheek producer’s comment)?

As for Warp Drive’s scientific merit, google the Alcubierre Drive.

45. As if the uglyprise was so well thought out to begin with. In spite of the crap design… and brewery.

I’ve grown to hate the word brewery, which is shocking. I think it mostly worked (but maybe could have been dressed a bit more convincingly), but it really conveyed size and complexity. The only scene where it didn’t convince me was when K and S are being chased by security.

I was never a fan of engineering in TNG, DS9, Enterprise or the TNG movies — the warp cores looked like the big tubes filled with flashing lights that they were (but I liked the TMP and Voyager cores)). And in TOS, there really wasn’t a heck of a lot to engineering (a wall with some lights, the dilithium thing in the middle, that grated-off painting of that tunnelly-reactor thing [these are all technical terms], and the jeffries tubes, which left most of it to the imagination — which worked well).

47. Thanks, honestly, for the constructive criticism. Nice to read on here.

48. Personally, I think the less detail about the hows and the whys, the better… otherwise we start getting into midichlorian territory.