Moebius Models 1/6 Robot B9 Deluxe Kit First Look
|Date of Review||September 2018||Manufacturer||Moebius Models|
|Kit Number||949||Primary Media||Styrene, Photo-Etch, Vinyl|
|Pros||See text||Cons||Nothing noted|
|Skill Level||Experienced||MSRP (USD)||$54.95|
Over four years ago, Moebius Models released their 1/6 scale kit of the iconic B9 robot from the TV series Lost in Space. At the time, the kit represented the state of the art in kit engineering and mold technology. As with several other kits in the Moebius catalog, this kit was recently updated and released. While other kits offered engineering improvements in fit and detail, this kit was great out of the box except for one thing - that clear dome atop the robot. Up until the release of this kit, we were told that injection-molding technology did not allow for molding complex shapes without compromises in parts breakdown and/or seam lines in clear parts. The original robot clear dome was done in halves and that was just fine at that time. I never got around to building mine as I still couldn't figure out the best way to deal with the seam line in the middle of the upper and lower dome halves. Before we delve further, let's review the basic kit.
The box is large as you might expect from a 1/6 scale figure but as you can see, the kit isn't really complex. Molded in light gray styrene, this kit is presented on nine parts trees (duplicates not shown) plus six separate parts for the torso, three trees of clear parts, eight nicely gray-molded vinyl parts, and three photo-etched grilles.
The designers made this kit so younger modelers can build it (with some supervision) though I mark the skill level at 'experienced' because of the need for cyano to mount the photo-etched grilles and the care needed to glue together the clear parts without ruining them. The designers also made this kit with some nice features to make assembly and display fun:
- Detailed interior of head inside head dome
- Head can be rotated independent of body
- Choice of retracted or extended arms
- Claws snap onto arms and arms snap onto torso which means you can change arms at a later date
- Soil sampler can be positioned extended or stowed
- Torso can be rotated independent of legs
If ever there was a model that was made to be lit up, this kit is it. The designers made it easy to run wires and fiber-optics throughout the body as well as plenty of room inside the torso or tracked feet to stow circuit cards. There are a number of aftermarket lighting and sound kits for this model on the market.
So back to the dome. When Moebius Models announced a new dome for the Robot, I admit to being skeptical, but look at the image below. The dome is still two parts, but the seam is now down low, below the level of the sensors and other details visible inside the dome. The only reason that seam is even there is to be able to fit the sensor head subassembly up inside that dome. Look closely, there are no seam lines anywhere in that part. If Moebius Models can cast an injection-molded clear part like this without seams or other blemishes, please tell me why we still have seams in aircraft canopy shapes that are less complex than this? It is safe to say that Moebius Models has raised the bar in scale modeling yet again.
What's even more impressive, even after all of this re-engineering of the clear head dome and new molding technology, this kit retains the same retail price as the original release. But before you decide to buy this new robot kit, Moebius Models has given you three options:
- If you don't own the model, you can buy the complete kit with the new dome.
- If you do own the kit and haven't built it yet, you can simply buy the new dome by itself.
- If you've built your Robot and want to eliminate that seam, you can buy the complete head which includes the dome and the stuff inside. Remove the old one and replace it with this new set.
In addition, Paragraphix produces a nice photo-etch set to update your Robot including new details inside the dome, finer sensor antennas, alternate photo-etched grilles, display name plate, and more.
You can find this kit, the upgrade kits, as well as aftermarket details and lighting/sound systems at CultTVman Hobby Shop.