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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Futuron: 6953 Cosmic Laser Launcher Alternate 1: Space Saucer

Due to connector wear and tear I've run into a hitch getting more than 5 photographs off my phone every other day... it's been a bother, especially since I keep forgetting and I have to make sure I don't upload the same photo twice.  So that's my unhelpful excuse for the long and languishing Battrax Review.

How about something fun? a long awaited post for another Futuron Alternate.

This time I'm tackling Cosmic Laser Launcher's Alternates,  If you follow that link you'll notice that my photography skills and camera have improved considerably since those halcyon days of my first wave of reviews.  I should update this one when I have time.

The first model out the gate is a fancy low slung fighter with a massive footprint.

I chose this example to start off with for two reasons.
First: It's my favorite idea on the back of the box, I'm drawn to the use of the giant window, the reaching mandibles, and the burly engines.  Lots to like at a glance.
And the second reason is that it's a spaceship, and I felt like building such a wonder tonight.

The structure and image presented a few quandaries.  Firstly, I cannot see the bottom, nor can I see the astronauts seating.  So I assembled what I could see and did improvise after getting a glimpse at the remaining part palette,  I opted for the rounds as landing gear even though I couldn't see them.  I felt they were needed for substructure support alongside the inverse slopes and the hopefully correct 1x3 bricks. A second glance at the box made me think the 1x3's should be 2x2 inverted slopes... whoops.

The first surprise with this model was related to its size, I knew it would be long, but the image is presented to look slender, and lest we all forget how wide those angle plates are... it is not a slender ship.  With a few adjustments this could be a competent saucer.

The plate laden construction doesn't inspire confidence in the craft's rigidity, and the lightness of the frame suggests the ship is frail, though it does hold together well.  It is a bit thin looking to my tastes, more undercarriage would be a good addition, but the parts for such an embellishment are not contained within the main model.  From this angle it looks rather good, the illusion of depth does wonders for the presentation.

I'm reminded that this is not a new toy by the yellowing of certain white elements, and the occasional dent or marred surface... that aside and more to the point, I really like the inclusion of the red spacemen here, I'm at a loss why TLG didn't include them in more sets... The cockpit here doesn't help to allay concerns about the craft's spindly construction, but it does offer an excellent grip point for swooshing; this is a very important play feature in a toy spaceship... especially one as wide as this model is.

I'm rather less pleased with this alternate in my hands than I am with its vision of loveliness upon the box, it's tempting, but wholly underwhelming almost entirely on account of the flat nature of the main body, there's a certain, this could never have been an official model, feel to it that bothers me.

I just noticed the 1x2 slope missing on the left mandible.  I'm not going to fix it... I'm not, but... pfft, I thought I caught that yesterday?  Anyways... I've made a handful of mistakes in assembling this, but I'm letting them go... fixing them with my current camera setup will be a 2 day bother, and I'm not willing to make the adjustments.  But I'm telling you so you don't accidentally take my iteration as the end all be all on the matter.

Here's a competent saucer composed by rotating the two big plates, and pulling the mandibles back, Since the mandibles aren't an exact match I removed one 1x4 plate from the back wing of the model to keep things balanced.  The grille prints look to be decent heat dispersal points ahead of those engine lasers.  I think the main design has great potential for a more built up rehash, but I'm really pleased at how simple it is to make flying saucers from this set.

You may have noticed the new background color... I saved some matte black... well it's not construction paper... thicker... I saved sheets of unknown material from going to the garbage at work. I figured the Futuron sets might look better on a nonwhite background and it was free 99.  On that note it's time to end this installment; until next time ~The Cure-all Pill