Blog RSS



STAR TREK TMP WorkBee - The Unsung Hero of Starfleet's Shipyards!

We love STAR TREK: The Motion Picture.

It represents the rebirth of STAR TREK, and its metamorphosis into an enduring franchise.

It also showed an evolution of Starfleet’s aesthetic into something more realistic, and befitting a 70mm big screen presentation. Part of that change was the inclusion of background workers and service craft for depth. Just the sort of things you would see around a ship being made ready for her launch into the final frontier.

One such craft, and one of my favorites in any Star Trek, is the stout little “cargo management unit" nicknamed the ''Workbee.”  

Designed by Andrew Probert, whose iconic designs included both the refit ENTERPRISE and The Next Generation's ENTERPRISE-D, the yellow Workbees can be seen flitting in and around ENTERPRISE's drydock in The Motion Picture. Pushing, pulling, lifting, manipulating, and transporting parts & cargo, the bee is the little unsung hero of Starfleet's massive shipyards. Having family that has worked aboard and around ships & shipyards in my own military life, I've imagined the people that build starships to also be amazing people. Our Workbee patch is testament to that belief.



More than 50 years have passed since the television series that changed the world first aired.

Star Trek™, the Original Series launched a world of imagination that forever changed science fiction. Shop Now!

The strong-armed bee in the patch was inspired by a logo sketched-out by Magicam model maker Chris Elliot while working on the Work Bee filming model for The Motion Picture. From there we added a starfield background, and the organizational name "Naval Construction Contractors."

That name was intended as a bit of a nod to fan-driven Star Trek lore. The registry number of the original U.S.S. ENTERPRISE is of course NCC-1701, and all active Starfleet ships use the prefix "NCC" or "NX" ahead of their hull number. What "NCC" means has never been expressly stated either on screen or in any STAR TREK production, but early fans embraced "Naval Construction Contract" following the release of "The Star Trek Blueprints" by Franz Joseph Schnaubelt in 1975. His "NCC" explanation has since become the de facto designation, even being used in a number of licensed Star Trek works. 

So our Workbee patch stands in tribute to two groups of dry dock workers laboring to bring an almost entirely new ship into service. The fictional workers in the film, but also the crew that worked diligently behind the scenes to put a new vision of STAR TREK on the largest screen it had ever been beamed to. 

They were trying to tell us something about ourselves in that film, and they were right…

The Human Adventure Is Just Beginning. 


John Cooley 
John Cooley is a writer based in Las Vegas, and a product developer for ANOVOS.  



Our Star Trek: The Official Patch Collection offers fans the best and most unique Star Trek uniform insignia ever produced for your costume or even casual wear. Shop Now!

Grab your own Official Workbee Patch!

Workbee Patch
$ 10.00
$ 8.00

Related Articles

Vulcan Anatomy And Teleconferencing

Learn More

Exploring the Design of an Iconic Skant Uniform

Learn More

Lounging in 24th Century Starfleet Comfort

Learn More

Full article →

Vulcan Anatomy And Teleconferencing

I've been working from home.

Many of us are working from home these days, and really there are some benefits to working this way. It's an opportunity to work in your PJ's. A stuffy conference can become a briefing aboard the Enterprise if you wear a Starfleet Uniform shirt. You can even unlock your inner logistician by attending a meeting wearing Mr. Spock's ears.

That last one has become a favorite with everyone in our house. First they're fun, and useful as we share an office these days. 

Our Vulcan Ear Buds enable us to hear and be heard by our colleagues and associates, thanks to an in-line mic, but the best part is their shape. 


STARDATE 2263. Halfway through their first five year mission, the U.S.S. Enterprise crew explores the furthest reaches of uncharted space, where they encounter a mysterious new enemy who puts them and everything the Federation stands for to the test. SHOP NOW!


More than 50 years have passed since the television series that changed the world first aired. Star Trek™, the Original Series, launched a world of imagination that forever changed science fiction. SHOP NOW!

 We are natural born Trekkies afterall, and it's incredibly satisfying to present oneself in a meeting as the ultimate in logical thinking. It's also really fun to make a little game out of it.

  "I wonder if anyone will notice the Vulcan in the room?"

Our Vulcan Earbuds are arguably the most whimsical product we've ever made. Sculpted to match the ear tips designed for Leonard Nimoy by original series make-up designer Fred Phillips, ours sit comfortably on top of human ears without the need for any adhesive at all. And, with three earbud sizes there's no problem customizing a pair to fit anyone.

It felt appropriate to wear my Vulcan ear buds while writing this piece. 

They came in handy while alternating between the soundtrack for "This Side of Paradise" and returning phone calls. 

A few minutes ago though, a friend & coworker popped in to a video meeting and spotted “my” ears. 

He dryly raised his left eyebrow in a perfect imitation of our favorite Vulcan scientist, looked directly at me, and with the slightest of smirks said "Fascinating."

It was truly funny, and the only logical thing to do. 


John Cooley 
John Cooley is a writer based in Las Vegas, and a product developer for ANOVOS.  

Full article →

Exploring the Design of an Iconic Fan Favorite - STAR TREK™ Skant Uniform

We've recreated a lot of costumes over the last ten years from every quadrant of the STAR TREK Universe. In every Trek era there's always one costume that sticks out as being either iconic, fun, an oddball, or a fan-favorite. STAR TREK: The Next Generation’s first season uniform skant fits all those descriptions. 

Mr. Theiss' iconic uniform designs were brilliant, presenting a futuristic look that was perfectly suited to its moment in history. 20 years prior, Lt. Uhura's uniform mini-dress seized upon the cultural zeitgeist at that time, as it was seen as an empowering symbol of the women’s liberation movement.



Celebrating nearly 30 years as part of the Star Trek™ legacy, Star Trek™: The Next Generation® ushered in a brand new crew and ship which once again brought the utopic values created by Gene Roddenberry back into our households.

Shop Now!

In 1987 Mr. Roddenberry wanted something just as iconic, and even more forward thinking: he wanted it to be a uniform that could be worn by officers of any gender. A master of intricate patterning, and innovative design Mr. Thiess set to work designing two distinct dresses.  

While very similar in appearance, the two dresses were created with the wearer in mind, and so two  patterns were drafted: one for women, and the other for men. 

We were fortunate to be able to take measurements and examine the construction of an original first-season women's Skant, sewn under the supervision of Mr. Theiss himself in 1987. Utilizing surviving patterns and color reference in archives, our design and prototyping team set to work. 

While hewing to accuracy, we did make one very vital change out of necessity: we eschewed the overly-complicated closure system, creating a simple side zip. This allows the wearer to dress and undress from the garment without needing an “on-set” costume department dresser! 


Finally, putting this all together using custom dyed jumbo weight spandex, we were able to create one of the most-exacting replicas of the women’s TNG uniform skant we’ve ever seen, and one that would look right at home aboard the ENTERPRISE D.


John Cooley 
John Cooley is a writer based in Las Vegas, and a product developer for ANOVOS.  

BOLDLY GO with your own STAR TREK™: THE NEXT GENERATION Women's Skant Uniform!

Join the Federation with these Fan Favorites!

Full article →

John Cooley May 15, 2020 3 tags (show)