A decaying prop from the original "Star Trek" in serious need of some TLC now has a new owner after selling at auction over the weekend for $61,000.
The shuttlecraft Galileo, an exterior prop used in classic "Trek" episodes like "The Galileo Seven," sold during an online auction hosted by Kiko Auctions in Ohio over the weekend.
The winning bid was reportedly submitted by Adam Schneider, a principal at the British professional services company Deloitte, who is also a private collector of Star Trek used ship-filming miniatures. The auction price includes an Internet premium that pushes they final payout to just over $70,000.
Schneider was part of the original Galileo Restoration team that had originally planned to raise money for the purchase and restoration. However, some of that team dismantled ahead of the auction following the departure of the Star Trek fan group International Federation of Trekkers, as well as Star Trek production legends Doug Drexler and Michael Okuda. When Drexler left the group, he said he would work with the auction winner to help with the restoration of the prop.
Following the departures, Propworx owner Alec Peters, who was working with the original purchase team, said the group would no longer raise money for the purchase, and instead use their own funds. However, the restoration efforts are expected to be quite expensive, and Schneider and Peters say they will reach out to fans in the near future to help fund the restoration.
In exchange, the group has promised, through its website, to restore the shuttlecraft, tour it for the 50th anniversary of Star Trek in 2016, and find a permanent museum home for the prop.
The sale is a windfall for Lynne Miller, the Ohio Star Trek fan who bought the prop in the 1980s for $3,000. While Miller had started restoration work on the prop (including the replacement of its interior wood frame), more recent photos had the prop in extremely bad shape likely from years of outdoor storage.