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1:48 X-Wing Starfighter ‘Moving Edition’


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1:48 X-Wing Starfighter ‘Moving Edition’

Bandai
Catalogue # 0196419
Available from Hobby Link Japan for 8,467Yen

 

 

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From Wookieepedia:
The
Incom T-65 X-wing starfighter was the primary all-purpose starfighter of the Rebel Alliance and its successor governments. Known for its versatility and exceptional combat performance, it was a favorite with Rebel and New Republic pilots. Possessing deflector shields, a hyperdrive, an R2 astromech for repairs and navigation, and a complement of proton torpedoes, the X-wing allowed the Rebellion to launch raids in Imperial space with improved odds of a successful mission. The X-wing played a major role in the Galactic Civil War following its capture on Fresia and the defection of its designers to the Alliance. It was most heralded as the fighter that destroyed the Death Star at the hands of Luke Skywalker. Later in the war, it would form the backbone of the Alliance Starfighter Corps, defending Alliance ships and leading attacks on Imperial vessels and installations. Most importantly, it could perform on near equal terms with the Empire's high-performance TIE fighters when handled by an experienced pilot.

 

Pilots of Rogue Squadron favored using the multi-role X-wing fighter, flying it as often as they could on most missions; they only employed other craft for highly specialized missions, such as missions that required ion cannons. The X-wing was so predominantly flown by Rebel and New Republic forces that it became a symbol of their faction, much like the TIE fighter and Star Destroyer were symbols of the Galactic Empire. Thanks to continued upgrades to the basic design and improved tactics, the X-wing series remained one of the galaxy's predominant multi-role starfighters for over 40 years.

 

 

First of all, it needs to be said that if you live outside of Bandai’s far eastern licence territories, then this is going to be like a kick in the balls. For reason’s only Disney can answer, the specific territorial licence for this region is now being strictly enforced, meaning that Bandai Star Wars products are only available there and NOT to other regions. If you want these, you’ll either have to ask a Japanese friend to get and ship to you, or you’ll have to take your chances with the chancers (and their inflated prices) on eBay. I’m really sorry to break that to you. I have my kit on pre-order for about fours months from HLJ, and thankfully they honoured that arrangement. I just wish I’d bought two!

 

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Courtesy, Deviantart

 

The kit itself comes in a not insubstantial sized box ( size) with a seriously attractive image of a frontal attacking X-Wing on the upper lid. Various images around the side panels depict the model at different angles, showing the various features and functions of this particular edition. I’m a real fan of Bandai’s visuals on their kit boxes, and this is by far the very best, in my opinion. The box is also quite heavy, and this model is also a very reasonable size, despite it being 1:48 scale! Upon lifting the lid, the interior or split into two compartments. One of these contains the various coloured sprues, and the other a large black box containing the ‘action’ components of the kit.

 

This kit contains EIGHT sprues that are moulded in a variety of colours. In some cases, you’ll see multiple colours per sprue, which is still something that I find a novelty. There’s no doubt that Bandai have mastered this process as the parts quality is unsurpassed, with no flash or flaw and no seams that are apparent. The clear parts are possibly the very best that I’ve ever seen from any manufacturer. All sprues aren’t individually bagged, but they have been packaged with serious care and attention, and are in perfect quality. Bandai’s plastic is also extremely high quality, and the whole model has been designed to fit together without using any glue. From my previous experience, the part fit is also spot on.

 

SPRUE A

 

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This is moulded in THREE colours, and also contains CLEAR parts. The most obvious, the Rebel Alliance emblem is moulded in the red sector, and this clips to the base. The other red parts form fuselage and S-Foil panels. Two cream yellow parts form the panels on the forward upper fuselage, and the light grey mouldings include parts for the laser cannon and various other panels, plus parts for the R2 astromech.

 

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Clear parts include a whole single piece canopy with moulded frames, or you can use a two-part solution that has a separate frame that clips over it. Diffusers are included for the engine tail pipes, as well as a part for the instrument console and proton torpedo bay.

 

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SPRUE B

 

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This whole sprue is moulded in light grey styrene, and the four internal S-Foil panels are moulded here, as is the main lower fuselage and rear upper deck. Two pilots are included, for both sitting and standing position. The detail is just beautiful and will requite some nifty painting to do it justice. External X-Wing detail consists of fine panel lines and beautifully raised panels etc. The panel lines will easily take a wash if you want to paint and weather this model.

 

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SPRUES C1 & C2

 

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These two light grey sprues contain the main S-Foil wings. Detail here really has to be noted as the inboard walkway panels with their treadboard detail is just amazing! It has to be seen to be believed. Extremely fine….. Also found here are the upper fuselage halves, two part nose cone, proton torpedo channels, rear fuselage chamber and forward engine cowls.

 

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SPRUE D (x2)

 

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Anything on this model that contains multiples, tends to be found on these two identical sprues. They contain forward laser cannon barrels, tips and flash suppressors, Incom 4L4 Fusial Thrust Engines, various other engine parts, landing gear and doors etc. Of particular note here are the thrust engines that are moulded as complete tubes, and yet retain excellent detail. We have some nifty slide moulding to thank for that miracle of technology!

 

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SPRUE E

 

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The only way to describe the colour of this sprue is that it appears to have a dark graphite sheen. It certainly helps to bring out the detail on various parts here. Look closely, and you’ll see the deflector and power shield generator panel that fits along the upper rear fuse, forward engine sections, cockpit tub, S-Foil servo actuator, undercarriage struts, and further cockpit parts, to name but a few.

 

 

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SPRUE F

 

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Moulded in a sort of bluish-dark grey plastic, this sprue contains canopy frames and the fuselage canopy sealing frames.

 

 

Display stand and Mecha parts

 

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A large matt black box with Star Wars logo, contains the brains behind this outfit. Open one end and you’ll find the internal mecha-module for the X-Wing. This is moulded in light grey and has a series of LEDs and wires that run to the various locations on the model. It’s actually pretty obvious to where they run just by looking at the location of the wires on the block. Four of these with clear LED lenses, concern the engine tailpipes that glow red. Another clear LED runs into the area where the proton torpedoes will fire from, and a yellow LED will sit neatly behind the instrument console and illuminate the panel

 

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On the underside of this module is a small black socket into which you will plug the display stand. That stand is to be found in the larger box chamber, and is wrapped in cellophane. Moulded in black, a small screw secures the neck to the base. Be careful not to trap any wires here. Screws for fastening the parts are found in this mecha box. Spin the base over and unscrew the panel to fit 3 x AA size batteries. When you remove the protective cap from the connector plug, there is a recess in the bottom of the base, designed to store this little part. Now…..plug the mecha module to the base and switch on the power. The LEDs start to glow, except for the proton torpedo. Press the left hand button and the S-Foil motor will operate and the foils will open, complete with a really neat sound that looks like it was sampled from the movie. Press the button again and the foils will close. The sound itself comes from a speaker in the lower face of the stand.

 

 

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Press the middle button and the proton torpedo light starts to fade in and out, complete with electronic sounds. You may have heard about the demo mode that this unit has. Since everything is in Japanese, I had to fathom this myself. Turn OFF the model, hold down the left hand button and then power up the model. You will hear a couple of R2 astromech droid noises and then the model will go into a sequence of opening its foils, firing a torpedo and then closing the foils. The unit then powers down to save battery. There are other modes too, including silent, but I need to spend time fathoming them.

 


 

If you look closely at the underside again, there are three more locations to store parts. If you wish to take the model OFF the stand and display by itself, then three plugs need to be inserted into the X-Wing, to hide the mounting points. Conversely, if you then wish to mount the model on the stand, these plugs can be stored underneath the base.

 

To finish the base, the Rebel Alliance emblem is moulded in red styrene, and pushes onto the upper plinth. Once the model is fitted, its angle can be tilted due to the adjustable head.

 

Decals/Stickers

 

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Decals

 

Whilst this model is moulded in multicolour plastic, and there is no real need to paint it unless you want to weather the crap out of it (and who doesn’t!!), there is also a comprehensive decal sheet. Like any decals, you do need to apply these to a gloss surface, and from that, I imagine a painted one. The stickers are simply a duplication of the decals, and they do look very good, despite me being generally averse to anything that peels and sticks. I have used these on the 1:12 figures, and with no issue. The vibrancy of the decal sheet is a little greater than the stickers, but the stickers are cut to precisely fit, whereas you may need to manipulate the decals and trim carrier film. I’m actually quite tempted to NOT use many decals, except for key ones, and actually airbrush the various tinted and coloured panels. I think this would be useful in order to maintain much of the intricate surface detail.

 

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Stickers

 

Please note that a small metallic sticker sheet is included, and these printed stickers are designed to shield wire looms from view (engines) and to hold various wires in situ during construction.

 

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Instructions

 

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Unlike the fold-out sheets that come with the figures, this publication is a proper booklet that is stapled. The illustrative quality is fantastic, BUT, it’s all in Japanese. This means you will need to pay careful attention to every single detail, so that nothing is missed. The instructions do seem to jump around a little in areas, but there is a logic to them. If you have a smartphone (and who doesn’t?), I advise you use a free, real-time translator scanner app. You can hover the phone over the instructions and you see them magically appear in English (or Engrish!!) on your phone screen.

 

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Decals and stickers (or painting!) will need to be added as construction progresses, and specific markings are illustrated throughout construction. The rear of the manual also has a final, comprehensive set of model photos that have annotation for these. This also extends to the pilot and R-2 unit.  A generalised colour guide is also provided.

 

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Conclusion
As I said, I really wish I’d bought two of these, or maybe even three. The kit is just mind-blowing, with exceptional levels of detail and authenticity. The fact that it lights up and spews sound at you too is just the icing on the cake. You might be in mourning for missing up the chance to build a FineMolds kit when they were generally available, but seriously, if you have one of these, then you’ll be as happy as a pig in the proverbial. This isn’t a walk in the park to build when you consider the Japanese instructions and the complexity of the model, but it is one that will look amazing in your collection when finished and weathered with blaster marks etc.

 

Recommended? Damn right!!!!!

 

Review sample courtesy of my wallet.

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Oh crap.. Just ordered two!

 

You can still find these at descent prices on Ebay.. Just need to look around. The Domestic Japanese website for HLJ has this kit listed at 8467 yen plus shipping, so it works out to be US$68. I just got my two for US$70 each plus shipping.

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