Achernar Class X Cruiser

«Last Updated on May 26, 2024 »


From The Four-Years Was, FASA, graphic based on Vintage Starship II design

The Acherner I class of supplemental cruiser was originally designed to provide the most basic of cruiser function quickly and efficiently to expand the Federation fleet during the early years of the Four Years Was. While the supplemental cruisers of the era helped stem the tide of Klingon aggression during the war, most were know more for what they weren’t than for what they were.

All supplemental cruiser fielded during the war were essentially tug designs that were quickly converted to a more permanent design. Unlike true “cruisers”, supplemental cruisers were mass-produced, with individual sections build by different companies and shipyards. This simple approach and the use of established engine designs meant that most supplemental cruisers could be build rapidly, often in less than half the time of a more traditional design. But as with other quick-build designs, the Achernar I was rife with problems and difficulties that often had to be handled by the crew after commissioning.

The Achernar I saw many of its internal compartments built and installed as sections. Sections were quickly joined to a basic space frame that was then covered in the outer hull. Because of the tremendously fast build requirement, internal sections often did not join to their partners correctly, and a significant amount of jury rigging became to standard, rather than the exception. While the ships were space-worthy, no two fielded ships were exactly alike. Power couplings, optical data network conduits and even environmental ducts were often snaked through compartments.

Despite their non-standardized and unusual construction, most supplemental cruisers were still effective in the field. Many were used as escort vessels, bringing greater firepower to convoys than the traditional destroyer-escorts. Scouting and exploration missions were still within the Achernar’s capabilities, and many were used in squadrons on minor research missions.

The most striking aspect of the supplemental cruiser was it’s external weapons pods. Unlike traditional construction techniques, the external pods did not require the safety equipment found on more traditional fleet vessels. The external pods meant that weapons could be repaired and replaced very quickly after combat. This proved vital during the war, as vessel after vessel expended it weapons in prolonged battle.

Despite its success on the battlefield, the Archernar I was never meant to be fielded for prolonged periods. By wars end, those that hadn’t been destroyed were in sad shape. Many of the internal components had been hastily installed with loose tolerances to ensure the vessels could be quickly deployed. The result was that few would remain operational beyond their initial four-year mission. Of the original 68 fielded, 11 were destroyed during the war, all during combat. 2 were destroyed in non-combat related accidents. 19 were scrapped after combat. 20 were decommissioned and later used for various purposes. 8 vessels, including the Achernar herself, would go on to be rebuilt as other classes. 4 hulls were disarmed and sold to interests within the Federation. 2 were given to the Tellarites and 1 was given to the Andorians to help replace fleet losses from those governments. 1 hull remains as a museum.

Construction Data:
Model – Mk I
Ship Class – X
Date Entering Service – 2253
Number Constructed – 0
Hull Data:
Superstructure Points – 30
Damage Chart – C
Length – 222 m
Width – 127 m
Height – 66 m
Weight – 156,665 mt
Total SCU – 250 SCU
Cargo Capacity – 12,500 mt
Landing Capacity – None
Equipment Date:
Control Computer Type – M-2
Standard 6-person – 3
Emergency 22-person – 2
Cargo – 2
Other Data:
Crew – 321
Troops – 321
Passengers – 30
Shuttlecraft – 4
Engines And Power Data:
Total Power Units Available – 28
Movement Point Ratio – 3/1
Warp Engine Type – FWD-1
Number – 2
Power Units Available – 12 ea.
Stress Chart – L/G
Max Safe Cruising Speed – Warp 7
Emergency Speed – Warp 9
Impulse Engine Type – FIB-2
Power Units Available – 4
Weapons And Firing Data:
Beam Weapon Type – FL-1
Number – 4
Firing Arcs – 2 f, 1 p/a, 1 s/a
Firing Chart – D
Maximum Power – 2
Damage Modifiers:
+3 (-)
+2 (-)
+1 (-)
Beam Weapon Type – FL-6
Number – 4
Firing Arcs – 2 f, 2 a
Firing Chart – H
Maximum Power – 3
Damage Modifiers:
+3 (-)
+2 (1-4)
+1 (5-7)
Torpedo Weapon Type – FAC-3
Number – 2
Firing Arcs – 2 f
Firing Chart – H
Power to Arm – 4
Damage – 12
Shield Data:
Deflector Shield Type – FSG
Shield Point Ratio – 1/1
Maximum Shield Power – 9
Combat Efficiency:
D – 69.4
WDF – 15


This version of the Achernar is based on the Vintage Starship II web site version. It is referred to as a “Supplemental Cruiser” on that site as well as in the FASA material. I decided to change the Constitution style cruiser from Guenther & Sofia – Ships of the Star Fleet 2290-91 – Volume 1 – Cruisers & Frigates to the Achernar II class due primarily to the large gap in dates listed by FASA. According to “The Four-Years War”, the Achernar (along with the Tikopia) were introduced in 1/9509. This translates roughly to September of 2253. However, Guenther & Sofia list the first Achernar as being launched in March of 2263, well after the war. The overall number is also quite different. I imagine that the survivors of this class may have been scrapped and the material used to build the Archernar IIs.