Type-II Hand Phaser
(c. 2285)

Type-II Pistol Phaser


Another version of the hand phaser / pistol phaser system.


Seen in Star Trek III: The Search For Spock, Star Trek: Generations, TNG’s "Too Short a Season" (in both cases - no pun intended! - as part of a wall display; it's also been re-dressed with some sort of wrapping around the pistol-grip) and "Final Mission," and DS9’s "The Passenger" (firing a swirly lightning-like lilac beam!). My personal favourite phaser design, as well!

The same technical manual mentioned previously referred to this as a Type-IIb, and the prop looks more fitted to be an enhanced Type-IIa; certainly the hand phaser prop exists, as shown below - but it's never been seen or used onscreen.

From my impression of the images, it's always struck me there's a curiously 'retro' feel to this design, in the way it harkens back to the Original series phaser pistol. It also looked rather unwieldy and, I suspected, difficult to aim! However, two sources have independently contacted me as owners of this prop and assured me nothing could be further from the case. . .

Ron Daniels says "I own a Richard Coyle ST3-style Phaser Pistol (the II-b) and I can tell you that it is VERY comfortable and actually aims well compared to my experience with firing real pistols and so forth. The slight angle of the handle makes it form a very accurate straight line from the 'point and press' standpoint of aiming. The other thing, and it might just be a quirk of my own personal prop, is that the gun is more comfortable in the left hand than the right. Since I'm left handed this doesn't bother me in the least." He goes on: "One of the interesting problems most people come across with all the props from ST3 is that the available pictures are all from the ILM-built proposal prototypes. The final products shown in the film have some detail differences. If you look at the images pictures in FASA’s ST3 Update to the RPG, Mr. Scott’s Guide, the Art of Star Trek and all the rest you’ll see the prototype builds. If you look very carefully at the film you’ll see that the hand held props don’t quite match up." He's provided some of the images below, with more images on his website.

Gary Stahl says "I have a 1/1 resin model of this phaser. Contrary to appearances it's not unwieldy at all and falls into a natural aiming point with a natural position of the hand.  It's quite ergonomically designed. It surprised me as well. . . The phaser one is removable, I've hollowed out a spot to place a velcro patch to keep the Type-I in place without glue." He's also provided an image of his prop, albeit in the middle of stripping for re-painting.

One unusual feature: a Klingon shot by Kirk is sent flying – a concussive beam, or just very heavy stun?

Also, notice how this film continues on directly from Star Trek II which featured an earlier model of phaser, yet we see Enterprise security guards armed with this new model? When they rendezvoused (offscreen) with the Grissom, did they get a new consignment of weapons? I don't think, so why would they? One theory I have is that this phaser is in fact an earlier equivalent of the Assault Phaser - after all, if we take the presence of the TMP-TWOK phaser in both 2271 and 2344 as proof that it remained in service the whole time, then logic (!) dictates that it is possible to have more than one model as standard issue. The TSFS Phaser could then be a heavier-duty weapon - just like the Assault Phaser - issued to security personnel.

This theory explains the fact that we see security personnel in TMP carrying the 'ordinary' phaser - perhaps the TSFS phaser hadn't been introduced yet - but not Kirk's Regula 1 landing party carrying them; surely a potentially hazardous mission called for some hazardous firepower? But then, you'd think they take more security than one cadet to escort a flag officer and the ship's doctor. . .


"'Ello, 'ello, 'ello, what's all this 'ere then?"

"Shall we let the unarmed Flag-rank officer go first?"

This guy got where he is by being rude to Starfleet Commanders


Kirstie Alley should never have turned down the role - did you ever see a fat Vulcan? Noo. . .
Star Trek III novelisation cover art
Note how much shorter Kirk is in this one
. . . and wider. . .
That's a spicy meatball!
RIP, Merritt Butrick. . .

"Take theese BoP to Havana!"

Early design concept, from the DVD
Wall display in "Too Short a Season"
Note he goes for one of the larger weapons! Compensating for something perhaps?
DS9, "The Passenger"
"Final Mission"
That's it, hold it up so we can see. What a nice man.
Very dapper.
The old, old heated-rocks trick
Looked a lot less fake in "The Enemy Within" though
The Boy! Armed! Every Trekkie's worse nightmare
Wall display from Generations    
Artist's ImpressionSchematic
The Prop
Images by Ron Daniels unless otherwise specified


Image by Gary Stahl

Source unknown