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Griffin Class

Size Comp
Universe : Prime Timeline
Affiliation : Federation
Class Name : Griffin Class
Type : Destroyer
Unit Run :
USS Griffin - Active
plus 25 others built in total. 20 have been lost in all.
Commissioned : 2374, class remains in service
Dimensions : Length : 408.65 m [1]
Beam : 133 m [2]
Height : 66 m [2]
Decks : 16
Mass : 1,300,000 [2] metric tons
Crew : 225 [2]
Armament : 8 x Type VIII phaser arrays
2 x Type VII phaser bank, total output 9,250 TeraWatts
2 x Standard photon torpedo tube
1 x 2nd class photon torpedo tube with 55 rounds
Defence Systems : Standard shield system, total capacity 594,000 TeraJoules
Standard Duranium / Tritanium Single hull.
Standard level Structural Integrity Field
Warp Speeds
(TNG scale) :
Normal Cruise : 5
Maximum Cruise : 5.7
Maximum Rated : 7.2 for 1 hours.
Strength Indices :
(Galaxy class = 1,000)
Beam Firepower : 185
Torpedo Firepower : 312.5
Weapon Range and Accuracy : 390
Shield Strength : 220
Hull Armour : 50
Speed : 376
Combat Manoeuvrability : 3,810
Overall Strength Index : 265
Diplomatic Capability : 3
Expected Hull Life : 10


With the advent of the Dominion threat, the Federation ramped its starship production up to the highest level ever. Vessels are currently pouring out of the shipyards at an unprecedented rate, and production in every area is almost constantly breaking all previous records. Unfortunately, in the chaos caused by the heavy losses sustained during the early phase of the war it has all too often proved difficult to co-ordinate this effort. As a result, significant numbers of vessels have remained uncompleted because the production of, for example, Intrepid class saucer sections has not matched the production of Engineering hulls for this class. In addition, many ships have sustained battle damage of such a nature that one or more sections have been almost completely destroyed whilst leaving others relatively untouched.

With typical ingenuity, production managers have responded to this state of affairs by turning out of their yards a variety of ships which can only be described as the "Frankenstein's Fleet" of Starfleet. Starfleet has for many years insisted on a high degree of modularization and flexibility in its designs. Intended to allow the ships to be easily maintained whilst underway, the practice also allows components of one starships to be transferred to another with relative ease. The Frankenstein Fleet has once and for all showed the value of this capability.

No two Frankenstein ships are exactly the same, but several major groups have emerged. The so-called Griffin class was the first of these. The USS Griffin was born when the Brektel shipyard was attacked by a wing of Jem'Hadar attack ships. The yard suffered heavy damage, including the total destruction of twelve Intrepid class Engineering hulls. The Saucer Sections, which where not yet attached to the hulls, survived the raid intact.

Under normal circumstances production would have been delayed by at least twelve months whilst new hulls where constructed. However, the yard manager was not prepared to wait that long. The Brektel system contains a graveyard in which are stored several dozen obsolete starship hulls; these where salvaged, disassembled, and fitted to the waiting saucer sections. The engineering hulls used where from a group of craft retired circa. 2250; the nacelles where procured from Constitution refits which last saw service over seventy five years ago. The nacelle struts where purpose designed, but to save design time these where simple scale ups of no less than the struts of a Danube class Runabout!

The USS Griffin was launched within four months of the attack, and another twenty five ships followed her over the next eight months. The bizarre nature of the class has led to many oddities; most notably in the torpedo armament. The Intrepid has two forward torpedo tubes located in the engineering hull and two facing aft at the rear of the saucer. The replacement engineering hulls have a single aft firing tube; the Griffin therefore has three aft firing tubes but no forward firing torpedoes at all. The tubes are a mix of old and modern, while the phaser armament is comprised of both phaser banks and modern arrays.

The ships various fields had to be reconfigured, and this has led to a significant drop-off in normal performance. The ships are thus relatively slow and not terribly manoeuvrable - or as the Griffin's helm officer famously commented, "they skim through space in exactly the same way that bricks don't". The shields, IDF and SIF systems are also affected somewhat, but in these systems some degree of compensation can be achieved by running the systems above normal operating levels. This has resulted in a relatively high component turnover time, requiring more frequent refits. In the long run the hull life will be drastically reduced by this mistreatment, but these ships are not designed for the long run.

In action the Griffins are never going to equal the likes of a fully integrated Miranda class, and three of these ships have been lost in action. Nevertheless, several have scored victories - none more impressive than the single Griffin which managed to destroy a Cardassian Galor class warship in a one-on-one engagement just inside the Dominion border. This accomplishment, which earned the Captain a Medal of Honour, silenced the critics and proved that these bizarre ships had earned their place on the front lines.

Little certain can be said regarding the future of the Griffins. If any of them survive the war it is unlikely that they will continue in their present form. Some have suggested that the Intrepid hull sections should be removed and completed as full ships of that class; but there would be considerable practical difficulties with this, and sadly it is more likely that those Griffins which escape the Dominion will likely return to the graveyard from whence they came, this time for good.

Colour key

Canon source Backstage source Novel source DITL speculation


# Series Season Source Comment
1 Speculative Scaled so that the primary hull is equal to that of the Intrepid Class in size.
2 Generic official information
Source : Speculative
Comment : Scaled so that the primary hull is equal to that of the Intrepid Class in size.
Series : Season
Episode : Generic official information


This entry is entirely my own invention - even down to the class name. Given the 24th century format of this site, it is absurd to say that we wouldn't know the name of this class, so I had to put something down. For those who don't know, the Griffin is a mythical animal with the head, beak, and wings of an eagle, the body and legs of a lion, and occasionally a serpent's tail. It seemed appropriate for this ship!

The Griffin is obviously a kit bash, that is a ship made by combining parts of different models. The Engineering hull seems to be from the TOS era, but is not a Constitution. The rest are as described in the specs page. Most of the entry is intended to explain away this peculiar combination, and IMHO does a fair job of it. Take it with a pinch of salt - in fact, take it with a bucket load of salt. The best I can say is that I'm unlikely to be contradicted, since this ship is unlikely to feature heavily in any future episodes!

© Graham & Ian Kennedy Page views : 82,026 Last updated : 31 Jul 2004