REPLICA JUPITER 2 INTERIOR
By Bill Hedges
I've always been a fan of Lost In Space, and a few years ago I was lucky enough to acquire a couple of original props from the show. At first I was just going to mount them on a board for display in my study, however I then let my imagination go and drew up a plan where I would mount them in their original looking cabinets.
Since they were from the upper and lower decks, that meant building a partial replica of both floors of the Jupiter 2, and I managed to fit it into one room in my basement. Although most of my replica Jupiter 2 represents only a semblance of the full size studio set, I did manage to include parts of almost all of the spaceship by cutting out many of the redundant features, but I did want to build a full size master flight console. It turned out to be a mix of the different seasons since they were always modifying the set depending on the story requirements.
I ended up with five original props, but that still left dozens of control panels I would have to make from scratch. My lucky break in building this was meeting two other original prop owners who graciously allowed me to measure their props, and even make molds of the knobs. I also was able to buy some original blueprints from another collector, which helped me design the cabinets for the spaceship, including the stateroom bed and desk.
So after drawing up dozens of my own blueprints for every part of the spaceship, I started building it last year, and finally 17 months later I finished it. It is built mostly from just plywood and paint, and about 1000 light bulbs. Some of the parts came from some talented prop builder friends. In my design, I wanted it to be more than just a place to display props, so I made it a place to relax, read, listen to music, and even watch movies.
For a view outside of the view-port, I painted the 1st season planet Priplanus, and had an artist friend paint in details that reference every episode that took place on that planet. I also painted in phosphorescent stars in the sky so I can turn down the lights and have a night sky, and even create a wind or lightning storms. The transmitter has a flatscreen television in it for watching movies, and when not in use, a white cover screen magnetically attaches to make it look like the transmitter from the show.
The room also is a good location to display some of my other smaller props like the Quasti mask from Follow The Leader, and the doodlebug head from Treasure Of The Lost Planet. Some props they used were just bought from stores and were barely modified, so I was able to find some like they used on the show, like the ubiquitous flashlight, Dr. Smith's tape recorder and Penny's Nancy Drew book. I was even able to find some new original stock circuit boards like they used on the back lit circuit board wall.
The original props that I was able to work into my spaceship were the Burroughs Cardatron panel that was behind Penny's freezing tube, wired up to flash in exactly the same way. In the observatory I have an original SAGE power switch panel. One of the B205 cabinets on the flight console has an original Electrodata faceplate in it. There were six B205's used on the Alpha Control set and later on the Jupiter 2. What makes these identifiable to the set is that they have two extra holes drilled in them for phone jacks where the Alpha Control technicians had their headphones plugged into them. There is also an original SAGE radar input prop panel in the galley. It wasn't originally there but two of them were in the spacepod and one briefly seen in the engine room. However, they were used all over on alien machines and in other Irwin Allen shows so I included it on my Jupiter 2. Although my Jupiter 2 is mostly done, I'll probably still add some more props to it and upgrade it occasionally, just like they were doing to the real Jupiter 2 for three seasons.