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Aires 1B - 2001: a space odyssey

Moebius Models 1/48 Aires 1B - 2001: a space odyssey Kit First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review April 2022 Manufacturer Moebius Models
Subject Aires 1B - 2001: a space odyssey Scale 1/48
Kit Number 2001-7 Primary Media Styrene
Pros Nice details Cons See text
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $259.95

First Look

Aires 1B - 2001: a space odyssey
Aires 1B - 2001: a space odyssey
Aires 1B - 2001: a space odyssey
Aires 1B - 2001: a space odyssey
Aires 1B - 2001: a space odyssey

It is amazing to me how we've seen some hobby companies grow. Moebius Models started off producing improved versions of existing kits, then produced much better versions of existing kits, then produced new tool kits of subjects previously produced in smaller scales, and now we're getting new kit subjects never produced before. Look at the 2001: a space odyssey franchise - we started with an improved version of an out-of-production Pan-Am spaceliner, and here we are producing things like the 1/48 Aires 1B from the Discovery and now we have the 1/48 Aires 1B lunar shuttle. Between the Discovery command module, the EVA pod, and the Aires 1B, Moebius Models has some big-balled kits on the market. If Moebius had simply produced a studio replica of the exterior of this ship, modelers would have been happy, but this kit has a detailed flight deck and passenger compartment as well, both of which can be viewed through the windows.

The kit is molded in white styrene and presented on a number of parts trees (duplicates not shown), but you can see in these images that this is a detailed model just waiting for some painting and lighting skills to really set this model apart. The assembled model is designed in two halves. The lower half has the engines, landing gear, attitude thrusters, and main passenger cabin floor. The upper half consists of the rest of the sphere including the fllight deck and the roof of the main passenger compartment. The way this model is designed, you can glue to the two halves of the sphere together, or you could simply dry-fit the halves so that you can view into the passenger compartment at will. The engines, passenger compartment, and flight deck have provisions for lighting though no lighting kit is included. All you'll need are steady red lights for the interior of the flight deck, steady white lights for the cabin interior, and whatever lighting effects you'd like for the engines as well.

Among the features and options:

  • Straightforward assembly
  • Detailed exterior
  • Movable landing gear that can be posed extended or retracted
  • Detailed main cabin interior
  • Detailed flight deck
  • Detailed landing gear
  • Detailed engines
  • Provisions for lighting effects

At the time of this first-look, Paragraphix has produced a corrected docking arm hatch and is about to release nice graphics for the monitors and displays inside the main passenger cabin. I will probably get started on this project, but will have to hold until Paragraphix releases their graphics set. Lighting the interior won't be an issue, especially if you set up the lower half with a power receptical underneath to simulate refueling the shuttle.

While there are some good photos of the studio model online, you can enjoy some variations of exterior gray to busy up the otherwise bland spacecraft. The shuttle does have some weathering applied to the studio model that will look good replicated on this model as well. The box art has some variations in the grays that are noteworthy too. In short, have some fun with this!

This will be a fun build, and kudos to Moebius Models for producing this beast. Perhaps they'll consider a 1/144 Leonov to mount to their Discovery kit and recreate the escape launch from 2010.

I purchased my model from CultTVman Hobby Shop.