One fan has created several functional Tricorders based on Star Trek: Voyager

Hero Collector’s New Star Trek Starfleet Starships Collection. Image courtesy Hero Collector
Hero Collector’s New Star Trek Starfleet Starships Collection. Image courtesy Hero Collector /

Star Trek: Voyager fans will recognize these Tricorders made by one fan.

One incredibly talented Star Trek fan has made his very own versions of the Tricorders. The Tricorders are a staple of Star Trek, and this fan, who goes by Mangy Dog, decided to create his own versions based on the Star Trek: Voyager series.

On his YouTube channel, Mangy has near step-by-step videos showing how he’s done this. The process is intense and requires an understanding of coding. For those fans who are familiar with that, it may be possible to make some yourself, but it won’t be easy, nor fast.

Unlike other props, these are fully functional. No, you can’t actually use them to test for toxins in the air or diagnose someone on the street for a potential broken bone, but they have all the lights, sounds, and effects of the television prop versions.

They even have LCD screens that have limited-interactive features. caught up with Mangy Dog and interviewed him on the subject of these Tricorders and why he had to finish it.

"In the end I wrote about fourteen thousand lines of code for the project. Some uses some interesting maths I’ve not heard of before and even some using maths I really should have remembered from school! … While there was tons of research I did myself. I certainly would have struggled if it wasn’t for the help I received for various members of the embedded electronics community, they really have been great helping me find solutions to problems I was having.…I more than once wanted to walk away from the project. But not only did my love of Trek and commitment to getting my projects done keep me going, I [also] promised my friend I would deliver and that was a key driving force to make sure this got done and done right. I wanted him to be happy with the build I made for him. And on a selfish note, I wanted to use this build as part of a portfolio to find work in the embedded development industry. So it HAD to be good!I also have a really big project coming up where I’m going to build a replica First Contact Borg Cube. I plan to build it at a slightly smaller scale than the studio model … I’m not sure when I’ll be starting that, but I hope to get going with it some point this year. It’s going to be a fun challenge, but this time, one that’s more artistic!”"

The updated Tricorder of Star Trek: Voyager is even better

The first was created in 2019, or at least finished (mostly) in 2019. His videos are more information on how to do this, and what he’s done to upgrade the versions; it isn’t so much a documentary or journal on when he’s done what and why.

That said, most of the videos feature some sort of new gadget that he’s tinkering with.

The newer version of the Tricorder, last updated at the end of this past year (2021), features mostly information about the code, and shell construction but Part 2 has the cleanest look yet at the device and all the bits and bobs that it possesses. You can watch all three of the videos for free on his YouTube account by clicking here, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

It isn’t uncommon for fans to do this type of crafting in the Star Trek community. One fan recreated computers from the same Trek era, while others have created sets in their actual basement.

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