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Docking Bay 92

 --- Jupiter 2 Saucer 40-FT Full Scale Model ---


NOTE: A good place to start for more background on the LOST IN SPACE series of flying saucers is Docking Bay 88. Read the discussion on the Gemini XII Saucer, 12 inch model. Then read each of the versions of the Gemini XII and Jupiter 2 saucers to get a better understanding of the series and its saucers.
     One of the most impressive models made of the Jupiter 2 was a full scale exterior model of the spaceship. Although called the 40-foot diameter or Full Scale Model, it really measured 43.5 feet in diameter. This made the full scale model actually larger than the interior set that was the most used version of the saucer and that was shown in use by the actors in every episode.

The Full Scale Model was built at the beginning of the series and continued in use right through until the end.  Its first appearance was in the third episode, “Island in the Sky.”  

 This was one of the first five episodes that made good use of the scenes shot for the pilot movie. In this episode the Jupiter 2 crash lands onto an unknown planet. Surviving the crash, one of their first priorities is to find out if the atmosphere on this planet will sustain them. So they send the Robot out to take samples of the air and soil.

The Robot leaves the 40-foot diameter Full Scale model of the Jupiter 2 to take samples

    In this scene you can see the crashed Jupiter 2 in the background and the Robot trundling down a mound of earth from the airlock to take the samples. The Jupiter 2 in the background is actually the Full Scale Model. There are several external differences between it and the Jupiter 2 interior/exterior set we see them usually using.
    You can see that the nose of the craft is very pointed and has quite a ‘chin’ protruding out of the earth. This is closer in profile to the 4-foot hero models than the interior/exterior set they usually use for the actors. That set just has a short foundation under the front viewport. In this episode they use both the Full Scale Model and the other set interchangeably.

    Later in the series, the Full Scale Model comes into use again. In the third season’s episode, “Visit to a Hostile Planet” the Robinsons are seen landing on Earth and exiting the Jupiter 2 from a high overhead camera position.

 We've landed on a strange planet. Where are we?

     In this episode, the Full Scale Model is used extensively and you can see a couple other differences. The sides are more angular and the breaks between different surfaces are more sharply defined.
     Another change seen in this episode for the first time is the addition of a radar set to the top of the saucer. This is assumed to be a retractable antenna as it is not seen in other episodes other than this one. It is interesting to note that a provision for a retractable antenna is in the drawing for the 4-foot Hero models as well.
     One other interesting observation about the 40-foot Full Scale Model is that if you look through the front viewports you can see other members of the cast clearly.  This made this model extremely convincing. Unfortunately, examination of the construction drawings indicated that no interior was ever installed. The Full Scale Model is just an empty shell.

     But this did not stop the producers from using the Full Scale Model for many purposes. One of those was publicity shots.

The Ladies of Lost in Space on the landing leg of the Jupiter 2 Full Scale Model

    Here is a studio still of June Lockhart (Maureen Robinson), Marta Kristen (Judy) and Angela Cartwright (Penny) for what may have been a publicity shot. The ladies of the cast make an impressive appearance in their shiny silver astronauts’ costumes standing on one of the landing legs of the Full Scale Model of the Jupiter 2
    There was another use for the Full Scale Model that was intended, but never actually presented in the series. The Full Scale Model had the ramp for the Chariot built into it and, according to the studio plans, it was fully functional. This was the ramp that Irwin Allen used for another TV series episode after the end of Lost in Space.   

The Jupiter 2 Full Scale Model as built. Note Chariot ramp on left.

    Here is a drawing where you can see the Chariot ramp extended down on the left. Also you can see some of the major variations between it, the hero models and the interior/exterior set. It must be admitted that no other sci-fi TV series built a complete exterior model of their spaceships like Lost in Space did.  The Full Scale Model of the Jupiter 2 was a landmark achievement in flying saucer models for TV.
Links to Additional information available in the Trade Zone.
A Precision Design Drawing of this Spaceship  -----------------------------------------

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More background information is available in the Saucer Fleet

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