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The size is wrong. It has to be. Because the aspect ratio of the ship does not support those measurements.
Using an accurate 3D model of the TOS viper, if I scale it to 28 feet in length, it is about 16 feet wide. Note that the width of around 12' given lands roughly halfway between the fuselage and the edge of the wingtip, so no argument that "this doesn't include the wings" works, either. This is just plain wrong. If this comes from a source such as a technical manual, that source is also wrong. (Note: excluding wings, the fuselage including intakes and engines for the two lower thrusters is about 8' wide)
If the length posted is correct, then the width should be about 16 feet.
If the width posted is correct, then the length should be about 22 feet.
So, here's the issue when it comes to TOS... the measurements of the studio mockup (used on set by the actors) and the special effects model ARE different.
This is no different than the "Jupiter 2" sizing issue, or issues relating to scale and size prevalent in sci-fi. Most television creators never gave these things much thought.
Also, keep in mind that the 1980 Viper is actually worse (at least length-wise), as it was altered so that it could be a two-seater!
What I'm saying here is that the shape doesn't allow that size, regardless of the set piece or the special effects model. Even if not exact, they're roughly the same shape. If you were to look at either from above and draw a box around it as tightly as possible, you would get an aspect ratio. Neither one can be both 28 feet long and only 12 feet wide. Even a Farscape Peacekeeper Prowler isn't that svelte, and no model of Colonial Viper from either series is. Not even any pre-production art could be that thin (doubly so since most of that is Buck Rogers's Starfighters!). Not even the ones in the Frank Frazetta paintings! (Technically, one of those has all the wings obscured enough that it could be anything, but the other painting shows them clearly and they can't be, other differences aside.) About the only fighter-sized vehicle I can find in any universe that even gets close to that aspect ratio is a Minbari Flyer from Babylon 5, which looks like a cross between an Indy pace car without types and a giant eyeball. There are thinner ships, in the way of rockets and escape pods and such. Even a Spacemaster series shuttlecraft from Blakes 7 is thinner. But nothing is really "in between" like that.
I'm attempting to determine the size here for reference purposes. I came here because I couldn't find any other reference besides some apocryphal game thing of dubious origin. But if the numbers can't be right, I have a quandary:
Is it 29 feet long or is it 12 feet wide? It can't be both.
OK. I've done the research. If I set a Viper to 12' wide, with a 6'1" man in a normal cockpit seated position, his legs stick through the fuselage and he's awkwardly cramped. The only way for this to really work is for him to be sitting with his bum a centimetre from space against the bottom and hist legs down the fuselage, like some sort of space go-kart. <img src="http://home.whatever3d.com/Art/__digPaint/Space%20Stuff/viper-12feet-wide.png">
However, if I use the 29' length, I get something far more reasonable and which seems to fit the appearance, which is easier to see in that scene where Adama and Tigh sit in fighters to talk unmonitored (easier due to them not having helmets on).
Based on this, withthe length at 8.80326 metres (about 28'11"), I get a width of 4.987134 metres (about 16' 4").
Therefore I can go with the 29' length, but the width should be changed to 16' to be accurate.
BTW you have a captcha question that says "What is the name of the planet Adama is from" -- that depends on which version and which Adama and what you mean by "from" (e.g. place of origin or nationality/planetality). "Tauron" can be a perfectly acceptable answer, too.
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