Ah, Starfleet cases. They come in all colors and shapes and I love all of them! Especially the ones that were used by the engineering staff to carry around their great little tools and instruments. But that’s not the only use for them, of course. They’re also very useful to store PADDs for example. And that’s exactly what Captain Picard uses his briefcase for in the TNG-Episode “Starship Mine” (6×18) when he leaves the ship, which is due for a Baryon sweep that requires a complete evacuation.

Prop-makers love to use everyday items, re-dress them a little and let them appear in a futuristic environment. It’s cheap, it looks convincing and it doesn’t take much time to do it. Because of that, most of the cases that appear on Star Trek are actual cases, that have a unusual twist or a unique look to them. It’s the same with Picards briefcase, which is actually a uncommonly shaped CD case from the eighties. The good thing about this is, that any “replica” made from the same type of case is 100% accurate in size and material, which is also the case with my prop.

The case itself does not give away too much about the brand or maker of it, the only markings on the inside state: “Outer Circle Products LTD. Chicago, U.S. & Foreign patents pending, made in U.S.A.

I got this case on eBay some time ago. Unfortunately it was painted in the wrong color and had the incorrect details on it, so I had to refurbish it and make it accurate to its prominent appearance in TNG.

Here are some screencaps from the show:




This case was actually also heavily used on “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine“, not very prominently however, but in the background on the Promenade. For these appearances, it was repainted and outfitted with different styles of tape detailing.

Here are some examples:





And here’s my prop:


One of many cases used on Star Trek: Picards Starfleet Briefcase.


The overall shape is very futuristic, unique and interesting.


The back-side is nothing but black and clean-looking.


The case opens up on the top where the handle is.


I lined the inside with some soft foam to protect whatever is carried in the case.


Instantly recognizable as Starfleet: The red pill-shaped label is essential.


These are the only markings found on the entire case.

eMail Print PDFOnline Twitter Facebook MySpace Friendfeed Digg StudiVZ More