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Imperial Speeder Bike

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Category: Star Wars
Subcategory: 1/12

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Medium: Styrene
Parts: 80
Status: Discontinued
Release Date: 1983
Skill Level: Beginner
“Speeding through the forest at 200 miles per hour, the Imperial Speeder Bike is the unique one-man scout vehicle used by the Emperor’s forces on the planet Endor. Piloted by the attacking Rebel forces and the daring Imperial Biker Scouts, this Speeder Bike is used in the most exciting special effects scenes in Return of the Jedi.”

AMT/Ertl’s model of the Speeder Bike is actually in 1:11 scale, but I’m calling it 1:12 because it fits with other similar model. This model was released in two different versions. The first version of the model, represented by this review, is Kit No. 1927, which has the completed model posed on a two-piece clear smoke styrene “ball and socket” type stand. The review sample is from the 1983 boxing, but it was reissued in 1990 with the same box art. The second version, kit No. 6352 (released in 1997), was the Speeder Bike Flight Display, with the model being supported by a large disc of clear styrene, making it look like the Speeder Bike was “flying”.

There are two other kits that were released in 1996 and 2005, but I can’t immediately locate box art for those kits, so I don’t know which version they represent. I am guessing that they were the standard “non-flying” version. The 2005 release included a 5x7 movie mini-poster.

The kit is “molded in color” according to the box, but the styrene actually looks like a dark gray rather than a woodland brown with black. Unfortunately, the entire model is molded in the same color, including the Biker Scout, who is supposed to be black and white.

The parts are typical of early 1980’s production kits. Molding is decent, but the parts are a little thick when compared with modern kits. On the plus side, there is little, if any, flash present.

The model is actually two kits in one. The first kit is the Speeder Bike itself, and has the bulk of the parts contained in the box (over 70). Detailing on the Speeder Bike is pretty nice, and gives a good representation of the filming model. Details include a full engine, foot pedals, handlebars, steering vanes, control switches and, of course, the bottom-mounted blaster cannon.

The Scout Trooper is the second kit, but it is pretty simple. There are only six parts (two left arm halves, two right arm halves, and two head/torso/leg halves). Also, the figure is pretty much locked into a single position – feet on the pedals, hands on the control bars, bent forward over the controls with his head tilted back to look straight ahead. But, it is possible to cut/reposition the arms into a new pose, including one with the Scout holding his blaster in one hand, but it will take some scratchbuilding as no blaster is actually included.

I probably the included stand, mostly because clear styrene is brittle to start with, and this kit is more than 30 years old. More likely, I’ll end up with a resin base and a length of brass rod to support the finished model.

There are no decals with this kit, but there aren’t any markings on the Biker Scout, and the detailing on the Speeder Bike is in the form of switches and buttons, so nothing is really necessary.

The completed model is about 12 inches long.

Review by: Rich “Lonewolf” Dula

Entry created: January 21, 2015
Comments: 0 | Rating (1-5): -- No rating -- | MSRP: $14.99

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