I recently read an entry in the Star Trek Encyclopedia which noted that there were a lot of little 'in-jokes' on the Enterprise-D's Master Display in Engineering, including a Porsche. One of the most famous was a hamster wheel which supposedly powered the Enterprise-D (if you thought it was the warp core, you were wrong!). My question is then: do we ever see this hamster wheel on the Master Display in a TNG episode or Generations?

3 Answers 3


Took some searching, but I finally found him...

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Thank Cracked for the image


Thanks Hypnosifl to for the comment:

The image is apparently from Star Trek The Tour, see Joel Zink's photo gallery here which has an identical image. So, this doesn't really answer the original question about whether it was ever seen on TNG.

So it appears this is not actually from an episode of TNG, but still proof perhaps that it exists.

  • 14
    I notice that it's spun the wheel too fast and is now upside down. Does this have any consequences for the warp field?
    – Random832
    Nov 18, 2015 at 16:02
  • 6
    @Random832 Obviously yes it does. Many consequences...
    – Daft
    Nov 18, 2015 at 16:05
  • 19
    @Random832 I think it's just another instance of reversing the polarity.
    – Simon
    Nov 18, 2015 at 17:13
  • 15
    The Cracked article doesn't mention if this image was actually taken from an episode. I would love a reference to an episode where this can be seen on screen (if paused at the right time and magnified, of course).
    – Josh
    Nov 18, 2015 at 20:37
  • 8
    @Josh - The image is apparently from Star Trek The Tour, see Joel Zink's photo gallery here which has an identical image. So, this doesn't really answer the original question about whether it was ever seen on TNG.
    – Hypnosifl
    Nov 19, 2015 at 0:26

This is an image from episode 11001001 (1x15) in which Picard and Riker initiate self destruct in engineering. Frame grab at 33mins 14 seconds.

Now admittedly this is season 1, but you can clearly see that is does NOT match the "The Tour" image in Daft's answer, and does not show the wheel.

enter image description here

  • 2
    That looks like a slightly different display. Note the lack of yellow semicircles.
    – DCShannon
    Feb 18, 2016 at 19:30
  • Agreed. As I said, this is season 1 and I suspect the display evolved over time. I will keep an eye out for a decent shot in season 7 Feb 18, 2016 at 21:33
  • 1
    That also looks like a screenshot from the 1080p remastered TNG, so I wouldn't expect to see it anyway. In this case both versions lack the hamster wheel, but in others the remastered versions have the gags removed. Presumably since with the greatly increased resolution they were far less subtle. The little gags visible in some of the Mind's Eye close ups were removed when remastered for example: memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/…
    – Chris
    Mar 2, 2022 at 0:50

I can't find the hamster wheel, but you can see a blurry version of some of the other gags in the original version of "The Mind's Eye" (4x24), but these were digitally removed in the 1080p remastered version.

Here's a gif showing the difference (low quality due to gif size limit): https://i.sstatic.net/W6juc.gif

enter image description here

Here's the original SD release in full detail:

enter image description here

Gags removed: a "slippery when wet" sign, an outline of a person and child, and a handicap sign. Here's the closeups:

enter image description here

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You can see some of those in detail in this fan photo of the set I found online here.

enter image description here

In the 1080p remastered version of this episode, you can see that they've been removed.

enter image description here

  • 2
    Hi, welcome to SF&F. Please note that the question was specifically about the hamster wheel, which you don't mention at all.
    – DavidW
    Mar 2, 2022 at 2:36
  • yea... good point! I edited it to clarify. Though the top answer is a fan photo from a star trek exhibition and not actually from the "Master Display in a TNG episode or Generations". So figured related answers that comply with that part of the question would be interesting!
    – Chris
    Mar 31, 2022 at 21:33
  • 1
    That "fan photo" has shapes not seen on the original schematic - could it be just a joke for the exhibition where the photo was taken?
    – HorusKol
    Apr 1, 2022 at 1:45
  • @HorusKol good point! Might not even have existed during the filming... and it was added later for the fan exhibit in-line with the other gags in the Master Display.
    – Chris
    Apr 4, 2022 at 1:40

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