Variations of the Runabout Interior
by Jörg Hillebrand and Bernd Schneider
The Danube-class runabout first appeared in DS9: "Emissary". Over the years, its cockpit was remodeled several times, most notably between the 4th and the 5th season of DS9. The runabout, including its flight deck set, also appeared in TNG: "Timescape" and in VOY: "Non Sequitur". In addition, the interior was slightly redressed three times to act as Chakotay's ship, as vessels of the Mirror Universe and as the "Insurrection" shuttlecraft.
Our article analyzes the appearances of the runabout cockpit episode by episode. We pinpoint the times when redresses of the set must have taken place or were reverted. While the focus is on the cockpit, we also have a look at the aft section. It was shown prominently only in TNG: "Timescape", but there are also less obvious sightings in DS9.
All variations have in common that they are largely symmetrical, with at most small consoles differing between the port and the starboard side.
The cockpit retains its original look throughout the first season, with only some minor changes until TNG: "Timescape".
In "Emissary" we see the lateral doors of the runabout that are opened on the port side at two points in the episode. As we can see, the outer door consists of two sliding wings. While the outer door follows the shape of the hull and is accordingly sloped, the inner door is narrow and possesses an X-shaped structural reinforcement. Looking into the runabout, we can see Dax in front of a yellow illuminated panel, which is embedded in the side wall of the small transporter platform. Everything is symmetrical, so the opposite side wall has the same yellow panel on its outer side. This part of the set will be changed later, hence we call attention to this detail. The inner surfaces of the platform have white illumination, with some sort of grating in front of the lamps. It can be seen only briefly in "Emissary", but it will become clearer in later episodes.
We also get a good impression of the leading end of the cockpit. We can see the windows, the pilot's controls and the rear sides of the chairs, with three tubes between the head rests and the back rests. This will be modified in the course of the series, as well as the consoles in the forward portion of the cockpit. On the very left and very right side beside the chairs we can make out two oblong horizontal black areas. These will change as well. We can still notice in this episode that the two oval side windows are transparent, while they will increasingly often be covered in later appearances of the runabout.
We can see only a bit of the inner side of the inner door, which will be better visible in later episodes. However, the aforementioned X-shaped struts are not yet illuminated here. The red area behind the raised struts seems to have a stripe pattern, which is subject to change just as well.
Finally, we get an impression of the door that leads to the aft section of the runabout. This one is similar to the lateral door and has X-shaped struts as well. It can be found in the middle behind the transporter platform. Behind Dax in her chair, at the port side, we can make out a rectangular black frame on the side wall of the transporter console. This space is still empty. Later in the series a deepening to store phasers and ultimately a small replicator can be found in this place.
When the runabout appears for the second time, some small changes have already taken place. In this episode there are two different runabouts: O'Brien and Sisko are on the Ganges, Kira and Tahna Los on the Yangtzee Kiang. The only small difference between the interiors of the two vessels can be found in the lighting of the side doors. On the Yangtzee Kiang, the X-shaped reinforcements are not lighted, as its was the case already in "Emissary". On the Ganges the struts are illuminated for the first time. Furthermore, between the two big cockpit windows there is a hidden console that can be moved up. A red button serves to launch the bomb. The console, however, was visible already in "Emissary".
A noticeable difference can be found behind the transporter console. While there used to be a door in "Emissary", both ships in "Past Prologue" have a pentagonal cavity in this place, holding a number of small consoles and printed circuit-like power conduits. Tahna Los uses this access point to install his bomb. Actually, on the two shuttles there are no doors at all that would allow to enter the aft section, not even on either side of the new console! On both runabouts we can also see two new deepenings on either front side of the transporter side wall, holding phasers. In "Emissary" there was just a frame around this area. We can have a good look at the transporter platform itself, including its white illumination on the inside.
The next appearance of the runabout set is in "Babel". Once again we can see the pentagonal cavity in the rear wall and the small phaser shelves, and no door leading aft. On the side wall it can be noticed that the window is still open and that the oblong black bar is dark. But that is already all we can see of the flight deck.
This is an episode in which we can never see the outside of the runabout but only its full-scale interior set. First of all we get a good impression of the interface that is located next to the entrance on the rear wall of the cockpit. It is the same on port and on starboard. It is a standard LCARS interface.
For the first time we can see how someone opens the floor hatch that that is located in front of the transporter platform. The hatch is pentagonal. It appears to be quite heavy and is affixed to the floor with a hinge joint. It flips open rearward. Furthermore, we can see the illuminated X-struts in the side doors as well as the white light inside the transporter platform in this episode. In this episode it does not become evident what is located behind the transporter platform. The phaser cavities are still there, but without the phasers.
When Sisko exits from the runabout we can see across the otherwise dark cockpit that the "X" on the door on the opposite side is accordingly illuminated too. Earlier in the episode, we can watch people that walk directly from the station's hatch into the shuttle. Hence, the complete flight deck set (and not just a door) must have been docked to the docking hatch set.
In "The Passenger" the cockpit shows up just briefly. But we recognize that the sliding door at the rear end is there again. It is the same door that was already present in "Emissary". The phaser storage is empty, the side door has illuminated struts and the dark area on the side of the front consoles is still without light. Also, the window is still uncovered.
Here we can see that the pentagonal cavity at the rear end is back again. The phaser storage is empty, the windows are unbarred and the X-struts are lighted. The yellow illumination of the transporter side walls is still the same too.
However, we are shown for the first time the function of the lateral black bars. They serve to indicate red alert, in a rather obtrusive fashion.
Nothing was changed about the rear end of the cockpit since the last appearance. We can see the pentagonal cavity again.
More interestingly, we get to see the outer hull of the crashed shuttle (which normally appears in the form of a miniature only). Below the side window there is an emergency exit hatch that Bashir blows off. Furthermore, the warp nacelle that was ripped off is totally wrong and was taken from a Type-6 shuttlecraft.
Doug Drexler: "Yeah, I remember it clearly. We all knew it was wrong. We pointed it out, but the feeling was that it was general texture, and the camera would never see it. Ha,ha!"
We are shown only a small portion of the cockpit in "The Storyteller". The side door is once again illuminated and the windows are open. We suspect that there is a pentagonal console behind the transporter. Most notably we can recognize that the oblong "red alert" console is not black anymore. It now holds a couple of small LCARS panels, probably to make it look less boring when there is no red alert.
We can see the new lateral LCARS consoles on the port side somewhat better in this episode, as well as the transporter platform and the cavity behind it. Otherwise there is nothing interesting to note.
There is nothing new in this episode, other than that we can see the new LCARS console on the opposite starboard side too. "Dramatis Personae" is the last appearance of the runabout interior in DS9's first season.
Chronologically, the next time we see it is in TNG: "Timescape".
The features that have remained the same since the last appearance include the formerly black bar with the new LCARS interface on both sides, the lighting of the transporter platform, the open windows and the illumination of the X-struts. The phaser storage is empty, but the simple deepening is given more contrast using the famous black tape stripes. It is the first time since "Emissary" that we can have a good look at the forward portion of the cockpit from behind. It seems unchanged, including the red button console from "Past Prologue".
The flight deck now has a central door in its rear portion through which the crew enter the aft section of the runabout. It is overall identical to the one see in "Emissary" and "The Passenger", but does not have the lateral illumination of the preceding episodes. We can see this part of the set with an opened and with a closed door. It is possible to walk to the left and to the right after passing the door; the straight direction is obstructed by a wall. Quite obviously there is no long corridor, as this would have required to attach the new aft section directly to the cockpit set. The new wall appears to be the same that used to be in place of the door in some episodes, but now moved about half a meter rearward.
The door in the aft section of the runabout is identical, only flanked by two fluorescent tubes. Behind the opened door we can see the probably same pentagonal cavity that can be passed by on the left or on the right side, which of course is meant to be on the other side now, facing aft.
As already mentioned, in "Timescape" we see the aft section of the runabout for the first time. As we exit through the rear door of the cockpit, there are sleep compartments on either side. These were later re-used for the interior of the Defiant. Upon entering the aft compartment, there is a replicator on the right side and a computer console on the left side. There are five upright windows at the aft end, which correspond with those on the runabout model. In the middle of the room there is an oblong table and four chairs, the same that will later appear in Voyager's conference room.
Aside from the new compartment, the most important change to the flight deck set is that the former rear wall of the set with the cavity can now be found behind the rear door, which will be like this on the DS9 runabouts as well.
In season 2 the cockpit retains the recessed aft wall behind the door as it appeared in TNG: "Timescape" (at least in most of the episodes).
The cockpit has its first appearance in this season in "The Homecoming". The first thing to notice is that the small phaser shelf has been replaced by a black console. The lateral door, including the light, is still the same. We can also notice that the rear area of the command section is like in "Timescape", with the pentagonal deepening about half a meter behind the rear door. The large viewscreen on the side of the cockpit has been slightly modified. If we compare its first appearance in season 2 with the last one in season 1, we can see the smaller horizontal field with the white border has been moved from the upper to the lower edge of the interface. The yellow side wall of the platform and the screen beside the door are still the same.
In "The Siege" we only see the docking hatch of the runabout. Unlike in "Emissary" and in "Q-less", not the entire flight deck set was placed beside the station docking set, but just its entrance hatch, with the already well-known deepened wall obstructing the view, although it should not be behind the runabout's entrance. This will be done in several other episodes too.
This episode shows the cockpit set from an unusual perspective, as we can look inside through the open lateral window. There is one recognizable change to the set. So far the triangular boxes above the corner monitors on either side of the pilots' seats were horizontal on the underside. The built-in light aimed straight down. Now the boxes are sloped, with the lights pointing inward.
In "Melora" we can have a good look from the aft at the forward end of the cockpit again. The only change seems to be an addition to the lower console between the two seats. We can see the interface with the movable cover and the red button from "Past Prologue". Beneath the pentagonal console in the familiar wall (now behind the rear door) we can see a new illuminated rectangular area. The side walls of the cockpit are unchanged and the windows are open.
Second Sight (as USS Prometheus interior)
In this episode, the aft compartment set is clearly visible for a second time besides TNG: "Timescape". It was rearranged and now serves as two or three different rooms on the USS Prometheus. The wall with the door leading to the cockpit (now completely red) remains the same as in the TNG episode. The bunk beds on either side and the archway in front of them were removed. A door or gateway was installed on the port side, which is recessed relative to the former bunk beds and makes the set appear somewhat more spacious and less one-dimensional. In the following, "port"/"starboard" and "fore"/"aft" refer to the orientation on the runabout.
We don't see the aft window in the episode, which would have given away that it is the runabout set. In fact, a new wall was inserted instead, including two doors with rounded edges similar to the original one that leads to the front. The difference is that the new doors don't have a double frame. This is an important detail to identify which part of the set we are looking at. There really are two new doors, which we can see only briefly in the third scene the set appears in.
The port and starboard walls with the characteristic zigzag cross-section are still the same as in "Timescape". We only see the windows on the starboard side, which complies with the idea that the set is aboard a starship, as opposed to the narrow runabout. In fact, the starboard side is all windows now, whereas the port side of the set consists of just solid walls with the zigzag shape and a console. This is the same wall portion that was previously located on the starboard side in "Timescape".
The room appears four times in the episode, first as a dining room with a table, then as Sikso's guest quarters, then as Nidell's living room with a couch and a table and finally as some unspecified room. We assume the set was not rebuilt but remained the same throughout the episode, except for slightly rearranged furniture and decoration.
The first time, during the dinner, we can mainly see the starboard side of the set, which is all windows. The solid port side is hardly visible at all, except for the new gateway. We don't see how the guests enter the room, but it is implied that it is through the "old" central door. Seyetik then leaves the set through the "new" aft door on the starboard side when he looks after his wife Nidell. We can see that the new portion is also where the bunk beds are located now, behind the door on both the port and the starboard side. Most likely this is the bedroom of her quarters (although Nidell is said to have prepared the meal).
The second appearance is only brief. Sisko finds Fenna in his quarters when he enters through the "old" door. Once again, we can see the windows on the starboard side.
Right after that, the set appears for the third time, as Nidell's room. The difference is that now the characters (Sisko, Dax, Fenna) use the "new" door on the port side to enter, passing by bunk beds that are located here as well. It almost looks like it is an entirely different set, but we actually just see the other side that the two previous scenes concealed from us. As already mentioned, the solid wall is exactly the same that was also used in "Timescape", but on the other side of the set. Later in this scene, we can also see the windows on the opposite (starboard) side, as well as both new aft doors. Actually, the room could be the very same that earlier appeared as the dining room; even the table is the same. But it would not make much sense for Sisko and Dax to enter through a door that most likely leads to another private room.
When Sisko and Fenna meet for the last time, they are sitting in front of the starboard windows. This may be Sisko's guest quarters yet again. Since the scene consists only of close shots, we can't make out any decoration or furniture that would more clearly establish the location.
Nothing has changed in this episode. We can clearly see the lateral door, still with red stripes and with the illumination of the "X".
This is the first time that we can make out a small control interface on the forward starboard side of the transporter console. Otherwise the cockpit remains unchanged. The transporter console is still white on the inside, with a grille in front of the fluorescent tubes. Furthermore, we can see that the door to the aft compartment is shut again, not revealing the wall that should be in the corridor behind it.
The door is open again in this episode, we can see the wall behind it. On the port front side of the transporter platform there is a small interface too. It is the first time we can see the replicator below the black console that used to be the phaser shelf.
The perhaps most significant change, however, is that the windows are barred for the first time. The main reason is that it saves costs in the post production if no stars have to be inserted. The window is covered by simple beige panels of the same color as the walls. The lateral interfaces in the forward portion of the cockpit are unchanged. The X-struts in the door are lighted. The lateral black panels are not permanently illuminated, however.
In "Paradise", the windows are covered with the beige panels too. The replicator, however, has been replaced by a simple flat interface. The rear door is open, with the wall behind it.
In this episode the windows are open again. Otherwise there is nothing special.
We can clearly see the front portion of the cockpit, where nothing has changed since "Melora". The windows are barred again with the beige covers. The replicator is there again, on both sides, as it may have been the case already in "Whispers". On the other hand, the two small interfaces at the front side of the transporter are gone. The rear door is closed, the side doors are still the same.
The Maquis, Part I
The doors are open again, revealing the wall with the cavity.
The Maquis, Part II
We can see different runabouts in this episode with slightly different interior arrangements. As we are shown only the lateral front sections of the runabouts, the only visible change is to the windows, however. At the beginning of the episode Sisko, Dukat and O'Brien are flying the Mekong. The windows are open, allowing to look outside.
Later on, Sisko and Dukat take the Rio Grande, whose windows are open as well. Kira and Dax, on the other hand, are on the Orinoco, and Bashir and O'Brien on the Mekong. On the two latter vessels the windows are covered with the beige panel.
This is the first episode to feature the new, more sophisticated looking window cover that doesn't let the windows look like painted over. It appears to consist of two parts and has a reddish basic color (maybe the same as in the doors) with beige borders. At the rear end we can recognize the pentagonal wall console again, but with a significant change. The console is integrated into the rear wall again, hence no access to the aft section is possible. In this episode we can clearly the ceiling of the set as well as the front portion. There are no other changes.
In this episode the wall is moved back again, so that Keiko can stay there and use a replicator that was placed there. The windows are open. The transporter platform is still the same.
The last time in the second season that we see the runabout is in "The Jem'Hadar".
The aft end is unchanged since "Tribunal". This is another episode with more than one runabout, which differ in their windows but also in the door to the aft section. Sisko, Jake and O'Brien take the Rio Grande to the planet. The door is open and we see the familiar pentagonal console. The windows are open. On the Orinoco with Bashir and Kira the windows are closed with the new cover and the rear door is open. On the Mekong, finally, with Dax and Odo the windows are closed as is the rear door.
The Rio Grande reveals a modification to the lower console between the pilots' seats. Here we can see a terminal holding a couple of isolinear chips. We can see a floor hatch again, but with a different shape than in "Q-less".
Also in this episode, we can see how Jake and Nog enter and exit from the runabout. It seems that, as already in "The Siege", the runabout set was not combined with the station's docking set, which facilitates the production of the episode.
After an appearance in VOY: "Caretaker" the runabout flight deck was significantly remodeled for the first time, prior to the first appearance in the third season of DS9. Many of the consoles were replaced with new, more sophisticated looking ones. The basic floorplan of the set remained the same, but there are a couple of changes that will gradually become apparent in the episodes of season 3.
VOY: Caretaker (as Maquis raider)
The cockpit set was modified to act as the bridge of Chakotay's Maquis raider. The LCARS displays were swapped with 23rd century-style computer controls and supplemented with occasional coffin-shaped structures to separate two consoles. The doors and the wall at the cockpit rear end were given a new, partially ribbed surface, encompassing the transporter platform. In addition, the characteristic oval port and starboard windows were closed and were covered with another computer display. Later in the episode, however, when Chakotay is on the raider again and prepares to ram the Kazon mothership, the windows are open again and we can see the stars.
Overall, the changes look extensive, but they mostly consisted of add-ons that could probably be removed rather easily. Only the front consoles retained their look when the set was turned into the runabout cockpit again.
Heart of Stone
The first time that we see the new runabout interior is in "Heart of Stone". The consoles in the front portion are all renewed with new 24th century LCARS displays, the structure of the section is the new one already seen in "Caretaker". The initially unlighted long black box on either side wall was removed altogether. The new console in its place protrudes less into the cockpit area. The corner above that console with the monitor was replaced with a still larger screen, but one that follows the hull shape and hence appears less boxy. There is some sort of rubber protection strip around the consoles.
We can also notice that the two side doors have been changed. The filling between the beige struts is not striped anymore, but solid red. In addition, two horizontal lamps were installed, which can be seen better in later episodes. The side windows appear to be unchanged. In "Heart of Stone" the rear door is closed. The transporter platform seems to be still unchanged.
We get a better impression of the new interior in this episode. The first thing to notice is the modified inner side wall of the transporter platform, which consists of vertical blue lights strips now. We can see how people are rushing towards the shuttle. The door is opened, and at some distance behind it we can (barely) recognize the familiar pentagonal console again.
We can also have a look at the console area of the runabout. The most noticeable change is that the chairs were modified. The tubes and other attachments were removed, making the seats overall more simplistic. This may have been already the case in "Heart of Stone". In front of O'Brien we can see the new consoles.
The new horizontal lamps can be found above the side doors. The small replicator in the front wall of the transporter platform is still there. In addition, there are two silver handles on either side of the replicator, which are shown more clearly in later episodes.
Through the Looking Glass (as Terran raider)
For this episode the cockpit set was modified for the second time to act as a vessel of a different type. It is the Terran rebel raider, actually the same design as the Bajoran assault vessel. Black stripes were added all over the place, even on the lamp above the side window. The consoles were replaced with a 23rd century design. The window was covered by a new console, and the transporter platform is now hidden behind a console. The ceiling illumination is red here. Interestingly, this is the first time that we see the new outer wall of the transporter platform. The formerly yellow pane was replaced with a greenish blue one that consists of stripes and looks just like the other (inner) wall. The phaser holder is there again, the console in that place is gone. In the place of the replicator we can see a new console, including the Terran emblem.
The runabout set had to be reverted to its former state for this episode. We can notice, however, that the two screens at the aft wall of the cockpit were slightly modified. The red door to the aft compartment is closed. The windows are closed as well. We can clearly see the handles on the wall of the transporter platform. The replicator is there again, and is used in the episode. The modified pattern on the inner walls of the platform is visible as well. The side doors are still the same since "Heart of Stone".
The Die is Cast
The only change in this episodes (showing the very same shuttle on the way back from the very same mission) is that the windows are open now.
We can see Nog and Jake in a simulation of the runabout cockpit in Quark's holosuite. The runabout is the same as before. The aft door seems to be open, and we can have a good look at the new consoles with the padded edges.
VOY: Non Sequitur (as Yellowstone class)
The runabout cockpit takes a detour to VOY: "Non Sequitur" before it appears in DS9's season 4. The Yellowstone-class cockpit is the same as that of the latest Danube class from DS9. The windows as well as the rear door appear to be closed. The lighting of the side doors is the same as usual. The transport platform including the handles are the same as well.
Not much happened with the cockpit prior to season 4.
We witness how Jake leaves the station on a runabout. We don't see the cockpit but only Jake looking at the station out of a window. This must be the aft window row in the aft compartment of the vessel.
This episode provides a good impression of the 4th season version of the cockpit. The formerly simple black console above the replicator was replaced with a big LCARS display. Otherwise the transporter platform is still like in the 4th season. The rest of the flight deck is identical too. The windows are barred again.
As already in "Q-less", O'Brien is working on a hatch in the floor. Its position is still the same, but instead of flipping it open this hatch can be completely removed. The circuitry underneath the hatch has changed as well.
The next appearance of the cockpit is in "Indiscretion". Here the window is covered again, with the same sheet as in all recent episodes. The difference is that this time the cover is flush with the inner surface of the cockpit and not deepened. Also the recessed part of the cover is now beige like the frame. We can see behind Kira that the door is closed.
Sword of Kahless
The old recessed window cover is back in this episode. The door is initially closed, and when it opens we can recognize the pentagonal console in the wall behind it. Otherwise there is nothing different here.
Our Man Bashir
In this episode nothing has changed either. The aft door is closed. The "columns" that are visible outside right behind the windows in flight direction (port as well as starboard), however, are strange, as nothing like this can possibly be visible outside the vessel. Could it be that this is a part of the set that normally shouldn't be visible?
Sons of Mogh
Here we can see again what the unobstructed view outside the windows should be like. The door is closed. The actual set is unchanged.
The set is still identical. The windows are barred.
The windows and the door are closed in this episode. When Kira and O'Brien leave the shuttle, we can see once more how the wall with the pentagonal console serves to obstruct the view, although it should not be where we see it.
Shattered Mirror (as Peregrine class)
Once again the whole set was redressed for a totally different vessel, this time for a Peregrine-class fighter. The set is overall similar to the one from "Through the Looking Glass", including the excessive black lining and the 23rd century-style consoles. The ceiling lamps, however, are not red here but the "X" on the side doors is lighted red. Once again the windows were covered, with what looks like molten consoles.
The last time that the cockpit appears in its 4th season runabout version is in "The Quickening". The windows are covered, the door is closed. Otherwise everything is as it should be: replicators, LCARS interfaces, handles, illuminated X-struts and the pattern on the transporter platform.
For season 5 the cockpit was once again extensively rebuilt, for the first time since season 3. This time especially the rear portion of the set was modified, whereas the area around the seats and consoles remained untouched.
The first time that these changes appear is in DS9: "The Ship", but the scenes are so blurry that we don't see too much of them.
Nor the Battle to the Strong
This is the first time that we can clearly see the modifications.
The transporter platform was moved from the front section of the cockpit to the area behind the rear door. The door was widened and is (at least in this episode) permanently open. The two monitors that are located on either side of the door in the rear wall were modified as well. The right one now displays a view of the runabout, while the left one has a new LCARS interface. In the former place of the transporter console there is a new separate console, that allows to pass on the left or the right (easier than with the transporter in that place). On either side of the transporter platform there are narrow doors that allow access to the aft compartment. The transporter platform is open only on the front side, the rear panel is illuminated. The LCARS panels on the transporter and the two replicators still exist, only the handles were removed. From now, the cockpit windows are mostly barred.
Without further modifications we can see this new cockpit in "The Assignment", "Let He Who Is Without Sin", "Things Past", "The Ascent", "The Darkness and the Light", "In Purgatory's Shadow", "By Inferno's Light", "Blaze of Glory" and "Empok Nor". In all these episodes the windows are covered and the door is open.
Something of interest in this episode is the new rectangular hatch in the cockpit floor behind which the Orion Syndicate's bomb is hidden.
The Darkness and the Light
We can see for the first time that on the side walls behind the new big opening at the aft end, there are large LCARS panels. These look different in almost each episode.
In Purgatory's Shadow
There is a problem with the way that Garak enters the ship. We can see how he is standing in front of the docking hatch, how the outer door of the runabout slides to the side and reveals the usual pentagonal console that shouldn't be there. Garak steps in, but from the inside we can see him come in through one of the doors beside the transporter platform, not through the side door behind the window. There is no other door on that side of the hull. The goof may have been more or less deliberate, as it was required to let Garak enter the cockpit slowly enough to notice only after a few seconds that someone is already sitting there.
Blaze of Glory
We see how Sisko is working in a Jefferies tube in the aft section of the ship. We have to wonder where the space is for a full-scale Jefferies tube though. When the door opens there is the usual pentagonal console in the background, simply to obstruct the view.
Here the crew enters the normal way through the side door again. In the background the docking tube is visible. The episode also shows the area between the rear door and the transporter.
Nothing exciting happens with the cockpit in season 6. The windows are always barred. The big red door is mostly open, except for "Valiant".
One Little Ship
This is the first time that we can see the cover on the runabout's windshield.
Change of Heart
This episode allows us to look outside through the lateral door.
This is the first episode where we can see how the big door to the aft section slides open.
There is also a blooper in this episode, albeit not a very obvious one. When Jake's and Nog's runabout is being pursued by the Jem'Hadar, the two are shown head on, from the area of the windshield. The window pane including the central strut, which is normally located just forward of the trapezoid panel, has been removed for this take. Otherwise the latter would have obstructed the view. We can still see the contours of the junction with makeshift paint.
Star Trek: Insurrection (as Enterprise-E shuttle)
The summer break between the 6th and the 7th season gave the set builders the opportunity to redress the cockpit rather extensively for the streamlined Enterprise-E shuttle in "Star Trek Insurrection".
The window frames were removed and replaced with different ones matching the outside view of the shuttle. The two side windows were covered with consoles. The wall is continuous where the big door opening used to be on the runabout. A transporter platform is now located here. There are still LCARS displays on the left and on the right, but with different graphics. The consoles underneath the front windows are similar as those of the runabout though. Overall, the new cockpit was given much darker, earthy colors. The chairs are still the same.
For this season the cockpit was reconstructed and repainted to its previous appearance. The front end is the same again as already in season 5. The windows are always closed in season 7. There are once again different LCARS panels on the two side walls behind the big central door.
Treachery, Faith and the Great River
Here we can see for the second time (since "Valiant") how the large door at the rear end opens and closes.
A ventilation opening was added to the central wall to allow Laas to flow into the ship. This opening, however, hardly makes sense in this place, as the wall is very thin here and the retracted door is right behind the grille.
In this episode the pentagonal console makes another appearance behind the runabout's entrance hatch.
We can see the hatch in the floor for a last time. It has a joint again and covers emergency rations and equipment, no circuitry as on previous occasions.
What You Leave Behind
This is the last appearance of the runabout, and we can also see the out of place pentagonal wall behind the entrance hatch for a last time.
The following images illustrate the basic configuration of the runabout before and since season 5, when the transporter was moved behind the rear door.
Here is an annotated list of all appearances of the runabout set:
|Episode||Name||Window cover||Rear door||Pentagonal console||Annotations|
|"Emissary"||Rio Grande & Yangtzee Kiang||Open||Closed||-||-|
|"Past Prologue"||Ganges & Yangtzee Kiang||Open||-||Yes||Phaser shelf|
|"The Passenger"||Rio Grande||Open||Closed||-||Phaser shelf empty|
|"Vortex"||Ganges & Rio Grande||Open||-||Yes||Red alert in long black area|
|"Battle Lines"||Rio Grande & Yangtzee Kiang||Open||-||Yes||Exit hatch, wrong warp nacelle|
|"The Storyteller"||-||Open||-||Yes||Small LCARS console in long black area|
|TNG: "Timescape"||-||Open||Sometimes open, sometimes closed||Behind door||Aft compartment visible, modified phaser shelf|
|"The Homecoming"||-||Open||-||Probably behind door||Console replaces phaser shelf|
|"The Siege"||-||-||-||Laterally behind docking hatch||-|
|"Cardassians"||-||Open||-||-||Triangular corner boxes changed|
|"Melora"||Orinoco & Rio Grande||Open||-||Behind open door and docking hatch||Pentagonal console supplemented, modifications to lower cockpit console|
|"Second Sight"||-||-||-||-||Only rearranged aft compartment, appears as different rooms|
|"Armageddon Game"||Ganges & Rio Grande||Open||Closed||-||Transporter control interface on the right|
|"Whispers"||Rio Grande||Beige, barred||-||Behind open door||Replicator, transporter control interface left and right|
|"Paradise"||Orinoco & Rio Grande||Beige, barred||-||Behind open door||Replicator replaced with interface|
|"Playing God"||Mekong & Rio Grande||Beige, barred||Closed||-||Replicator on both sides, both interfaces gone|
|"The Maquis I"||-||Beige, barred||-||Behind open door||-|
|"The Maquis II"||Mekong & Rio Grande||Open||-||-||-|
|"Crossover"||-||New red cover||-||Flush in door frame||-|
|"Tribunal"||-||Open||-||Behind open door||-|
|"The Jem'Hadar"||Mekong||Red, barred||Closed||-||-|
|Orinoco||Red, barred||-||Behind open door||-|
|Rio Grande||Open||-||Behind open door||-|
|VOY: "Caretaker"||Maquis raider||Covered with screen, later open||-||-||Doors and transporter console covered, detail changes|
|"Heart of Stone"||Mekong||Open||Closed||-||New consoles, silver handle on transporter wall|
|"Visionary"||-||Open?||-||Behind open door||-|
|"Through the Looking Glass"||Mirror Universe assault ship||Behind console||-||-||-|
|"Improbable Cause"||Mekong||Red, barred||Closed||-||-|
|"The Die is Cast"||Mekong||Open||-||-||-|
|"Facets"||-||-||-||Behind open door?||-|
|VOY: "Non Sequitur"||Yellowstone||Red, barred||Closed||-||-|
|"The Visitor"||-||-||-||-||Aft section visible|
|"Hippocratic Oath"||Rubicon||Red, barred||Closed||-||Floor hatch new LCARS above replicator|
|"Indiscretion"||Rio Grande||White, barred||Closed||-||-|
|"The Sword of Kahless"||Rio Grande||Red, barred||Sometimes open, sometimes closed||Behind door||-|
|"Our Man Bashir"||Orinoco||Open||Closed||-||Strange struts behind the lateral windows|
|"Sons of Mogh"||Yukon||Open||Closed||-||-|
|"Hard Time"||-||Red, barred||Closed||Behind docking hatch||-|
|"Shattered Mirror"||Mirror Universe Peregrine class||Covered by burnt out console||-||-||-|
|"The Quickening"||-||Red, barred||Closed||-||-|
|"The Ship"||-||Red, barred||Open||-||New area behind sets|
|"Nor the Battle to the Strong"||-||Red, barred||Open||-||-|
|"The Assignment"||Rio Grance||Red, barred||Open||-||-|
|"Let He Who Is Without Sin"||-||Red, barred||Open||-||-|
|"Things Past"||-||Red, barred||Open||-||-|
|"The Ascent"||-||Red, barred||Open||-||New rear floor hatch|
|"The Darkness and the Light"||-||Red, barred||Open||-||-|
|"In Purgatory's Shadow"||-||Red, barred||Open||Behind docking hatch||Goof when Garak enters through a non-existing door|
|"By Inferno's Light"||Yukon & Rio Grande||Red, barred||Open||-||-|
|"Blaze of Glory"||-||Red, barred||Open||Behind Jefferies tube||New Jefferies tube|
|"Empok Nor"||-||Red, barred||Open||-||-|
|"One Little Ship"||Rubicon||Red, barred||Open||-||Barred front windows|
|"Change of Heart"||Shenandoah||Red, barred||Open||-||-|
|"Valiant"||Shenandoah||Red, barred||Sometimes open, sometimes closed||-||-|
|"Star Trek: Insurrection"||Enterprise-E shuttle||Hidden behind console||Transporter console hides door||-||-|
|"Shadows and Symbols"||-||Red, barred||Open||-||-|
|"Treachery, Faith and the Great River"||Rio Grande||Red, barred||Sometimes open, sometimes closed||-||-|
|"Prodigal Daughter"||-||-||-||Behind docking hatch||-|
|"Chimera"||-||Red, barred||Open||New ventilation opening||-|
|"Penumbra"||Gander||Red, barred||Open||-||Floor hatch|
|"When it Rains..."||-||Red, barred||-||-||-|
|"Tacking into the Wind"||-||Red, barred||Sometimes open, sometimes closed||-||-|
|"What You Leave Behind"||-||-||-||Behind docking hatch||-|
Thanks to Alex who spotted the goof in "Valiant" and to DataCable who found the new light arrangement in "Cardassians". Thanks also to Svetz Falhain for the hint about the appearance of the aft section in "Second Sight".