CODEX: KLINGON EMPIRE
A Note to historians: Ever bastions of tradition, the Klingon Empire carried on competitive design contracts well into the 24th Century, but this fell out of favour during the Dominion War where all Shipyards were taken over by the High Council in an effort to consolidate construction and repairs. However, at the time this document was written, this practice was still in vogue. The shipyards of Earth and Andoria held this sort of competition until the designs of the Pyotr Velikiy and Constitution Class cruisers resulted in the demise of Andorian designs. Some Andorian designs have since been accepted into Starfleet, such as the Venture, Sabre, and Aegean Class starships.
All Klingon vessels have a letter and number designation, as well as a class name, but as a rule these number designations were phased out after the end of the Organian Conflict. However all designs retain their number when it comes to referencing their design class.
The most long lived of these design classes is the Class D. While ships of this type can vary widely, their basic characteristics are that of a "Boom and Wing" form. The bridge and a central torpedo launcher, and occasionally a clutch of disruptors, along with the officers quarters, form the command module. This is connected to the "wing" module, containing engineering, weapons systems and crew quarters, by a boom. This design originally featured the entire habitable area inside the command module, with the then unstable warp drive and its dangerous radiation risks isolated by the long boom, but for the past 2 Centuries, this design has been unnessessary, and the "Boom and Wing" design has become largely a tradition rather than a nessessity. The D5, D6 and D7 Cruisers, known in their latest iterations as the Qa'HoS Class Light Cruiser and the K'T'Inga Class Heavy Cruiser are the most commonly recognised classes of this design class.
Historical Note: The Qa'Hos was one of the designs that had great promise, but was withdrawn with the Khitomer Accords. However, it wasn't until after the end of the Dominion War that the venerable (or "vulnerable" as many Klingon Captains would complain) K'T'Inga was finally withdrawn in favour of its decendant, the Vor'Cha.
The E Class is more commonly known by the founder of its design, the Bird of Prey. There are currently 2 types of Birds of Prey in the Klingon Defence Force, the classic B'rel Class and the larger QuD Class. Designed around the cloaking device aquired from the Romulans, Birds of Prey are small predatory designs that are fast and manouverable and for their size, have a sizable punch.
Historical Note. Ships of the E Class can be found in two forms in the mid to late 24th Century, namely the latest iteration of the B'rel, and the much larger but externally similar K'Vort Class. The QuD Class suffered from space frame fatigue before its time, and was withdrawn unusually early for a Klingon vessel, in the mid 2340s.
The first ships of this type were designed just prior to the aquisition of cloaking technology. Since they were essentially designed for the same purpose as the new E Class, the P Class did survive in nieche forms, like the current pIH Class. In the KDF, the last survivors of the P Class are found fulling roles as repair vessels, armed transports, and marine transports.
Historical Note: The tired old pIH Class was not finally withdrawn until the early 2320s, due to its special sensor detection and interuption equipment.
The M Class is a very new design class that is decended from the D Class. They are essentially heavily modified D Class vessels, principally the D7 K'T'Inga. Featuring 3 warp engines, the two classes in this design class, the Suvwel'QeH and the met'LetH Class are specialised cruisers, the former a command cruiser, and the latter a torpedo cruiser.
Historical Note: These ships were withdrawn with the Khitomer Accords, much to the dismay of the KDF.
The C Class has two subclasses. While both fufilling the roles of battlecruisers, dreadnoughts and other capital ships, they have very different origins.
Designed by the Cheng'Duwj Shipyards around Qo'Nos, the most well known and successful of its type is the pumwl Class dreadnought. While very powerful and with little in the way of design faults, ships of this type are very expensive and time consuming to produce. They formed the core of the KDF during the Organian Conflict, and during the ISC War of Pacification. However the cost of their construction, and the need for more ships to replace those lost during these conflicts and to expand the KDF further, lead to other avenues of design being explored by other shipyards.
Designed in competition to the C-A Class by the Charg'Wubl Shipyards in the Ho'Thak System, the C-B design class is currently formed from a single class, the VoD'LeH Class. Based on the D7 K'T'Inga, the VoD'LeH Class battlecruiser shares many components with its smaller ancestor, and this allows faster construction and repair times, and also minimises on the amount of conversion training needed for newly graduated captains trained at the Academy on old D6 and D7 Class Cruisers. While not structurally strong enough to warrant further development into a dreadnought or battleship type vessel, the D7 hull in its VoD'LeH guise is quite capable as a heavy battlecruiser.
Historical Note: The C-A Design Class fell from favour after the explosion of Qo'NoS' moon, Praxis. The costs of developing such vessels in light of this event proved too great. However, existing puwml and other earlier vessels such as the "Super Battlecruiser" Ber'Taa Class were repaired, refit and kept in service until the 2340's when the heavy photon torpedo became obsolete with the invention and adoption of Ion Torpedoes. These hulls were neither strong enough for modern warfare, nor capable of mounting Ion Torpedo launchers, and had a crew complement requirement way above modern designs.
The C-B design class proved extremely popular, and many types of vessel were constructed to this design class. This marked the end of Cheng'Duwj Shipyards prime, and soon it was seen as a dinosaur holding onto past glories. With its three most famous designs, the pumwl, QeyLiS bet'LetH and pIH Class all withdrawn, in 2350, the shipyards were won in a challenge between Qor'Pok, the head of Cheng'Duwj shipyards, and Char'Thol, head of Charg'Wubl shipyards, in which Char'Thol won. The C-B design class however, had been retired 4 years before, suffering the same disadvantages with the advent of Ion Torpedoes as its erstwhile rival. It can be argued however, that in the successive designs of the Voodieh, Negh'Var and Sto'Vo'Kor Class capital ships, laid down during and after the Dominion War and all descended from the design style laid down with the Vor'Cha Class, that the C-B design class' principles have lived on in the new generation of Klingon Warships.
A very limited design class, the B design Class is portrayed best in the massive QeyLiS bet'LetH Class battleship designed and manufactured by Cheng'Duwj shipyards. Armed with a powerful bank of heavy photon torpedo tubes, a large array of disruptors and a huge dorsal spine mounted assault phaser, the QeyLiS bet'LetH is an enormous outlay of materials and manpower, offset only by the fact that they shared some components with the shipyards C-A Designed pumwl Class, and only 4 were completed by the end of the War of Pacification. However, 3 more were laid down, but as of the time of writing, none are completed beyond basic hulls.
Historical Note: In the aftermath of the explosion at Praxis, the QeyLiS bet'LetH Class went the same way as its smaller brother the pumwl. This class of ship fell out of favour with most powers during the period of relative peace after the Khitomer Accords, (although notably, not with the Romulan Star Empire) and in common with its stablemates, the QeyLiS bet'LetH was no longer produced, and while the 3 remaining in service (the IKS Ho'Wubl was lost during the Gorn assault in the General War) had a minor systems refit in 2335, their assault phaser power relays removed as these massive weapons could no longer be operated safely due to their age, they were essentially mothballed, and finally dismantled during the Dominon War for war materiel.
Codex: Klingon Empire
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