ASC-34 “Crab pot” Medium Cargo Aerospacecraft
By Tim Wing
The ASC-34 Crab Pot (Sinpadd Reiltas i879) was a Karbarran cargo dropship used by the Expeditionary Forces from the mid-twenties till the mid-thirties. The Crab Pot received its nick name when it was pressed into service by the Invid during their occupation of Karbarra as a troop transport. When one considers what it must have looked like to see these blunt, bucket shaped craft disgorging twenty or so Invid Iigaa at a time, the origin of the name is obvious. Though the Karbarran crews who manned these craft resented this nickname, it stuck throughout its time with the UEEF none the less.
First produced by Kizer’ain Heavy Lift in 1952 as a fleet “resupply ship”, it was designed from the beginning to have excellent pad to orbit performance with one large anti-gravity lift pod and one high-thrust plasma reaction engine. It was also built to be able to conduct fast re-entry operations. This was made possible by its heavily armored hull. This was a quality appreciated by the UEEF Marine Corps during its ten years of service with them. This heavy armor also allowed it absorb significant amounts of enemy fire whilst delivering or extracting troops to and from hot landing zones.
The Crab Pot was used during this period primarily because all the Karbarran Capital Ships lend-leased to the UEEF were specifically configured to accommodate them. Kitzun dropships would of course have been preferable, but their large size made them a non-starter what with the smaller bays on the Karbarran vessels. Still, the Crab Pots had good performance and could carry almost 200 tons to orbit, or deliver ten Alpha sized mecha to the battlefield. The only real fault with the craft was its high loading deck configuration and overly complicated and fragile cargo ramp. Because of this, it was only used for the insertion of combat troops that could “jump” from the open cargo door. Heavier mecha, such as the R-10 series of Destroids, were never dropped in these vessels.
The Crab Pot is still in service with the Karbarran Fleet, though it has been mostly replaced by post war designs such as the larger i956.
- Width: 32.1 meters
- Height: 34.6 meters with landing skids retracted
- Engines: 1x Mofoblidz Thermonuclear Reactor, 1x anti-gravity pod, 1x Plasma reaction engine, 8x plasma shock expansion engines
- Capacity: 10 Alpha battloid sized mecha, 200 tons of cargo
- Planet of Origin: Karbarra
- Manufacturer: Kizer’ain Heavy Lift
- Service history: Karbarran Merchant Marine 1953-current, Karbarran Fleet 1952-current, UEEF 2026-2034
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Original artwork by: Tim Wing, based on preproduction sketches by Yoshitaka Amano, Shinji Aramaki and Hideki Kakinuma.
Content by Tim Wing
Copyright © 2015 Tim Wing