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  Bandai's Apollo 11 and Saturn V 1:144 model (Page 3)

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Author Topic:   Bandai's Apollo 11 and Saturn V 1:144 model
andrewcli
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posted 04-02-2010 07:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for andrewcli   Click Here to Email andrewcli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just got home and saw a notice in my mailbox, "Sorry We Missed You!" UGH!!!!

I'm glad they haven't cancelled the weekend postal services yet and I will be there tomorrow, bright and early!

Apollo Redux
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posted 04-02-2010 09:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Apollo Redux   Click Here to Email Apollo Redux     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
$500 for plastic? I'll wait for the 4D Vision Cutaway Saturn V.

Take care of those birds, guys.

GoesTo11
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posted 04-02-2010 09:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GoesTo11   Click Here to Email GoesTo11     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Apollo Redux:
I'll wait for the 4D Vision Cutaway Saturn V.
I'm leaning that way as well, after reading this thread. I have the 4D Shuttle Orbiter, and I already knew I'd be buying their Saturn V. I was leaning toward purchasing the Bandai model as well, but knowing now that it's mostly plastic, I'm not so keen given the price.

For me, the Bandai model's chief appeal at this point is that it comes with the support stands enabling it to be displayed horizontally in separated stages, which would make it unique in my collection. Other than that, I'm not sure how to justify the purchase. Given that I've apparently got some wait time before online retailers receive their next batch, I'll be thinking it over.

andrewcli
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posted 04-03-2010 01:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for andrewcli   Click Here to Email andrewcli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I picked up my package today and here is what I have to say:

The shipping package was done very well. The box is nice too that it has a handle that you can carry it around.

The model is very well done, I like the details. No errors in painting, nice and sharp. I did have one problem, one of the fins broke off, but easy to glue back on.

Although it is made of plastic, each stage is weighty - probably from the engine nozzles and from the domes.

The instructions are written in Japanese, but the diagrams are pretty good to follow. Each stage is connected by a locking ring mechanism, so I would be careful not to over torque it.

The Spacecraft Lunar Module Adapter (SLA) panels can be opened, but are fragile, so don't put too much force there. When putting the lunar module (LM) in, I would first connect it to the SLA with it's panels open before placing it on the third stage. The legs have to be positioned so that there are between each latch of the panel - it's a snug fit and you have to gently work it in. If you don't do that, then the service module cannot connect. You can leave one panel open to see the LM. I'm surprised that the LM is nicely done, especially being so small.

When you connect the command module (CM) to the service module (SM), it doesn't really lock into place and can easily fall off. To keep it in place, it either has to be pointed upward or connected to the shield cover, it's nicely snugged in there. I will probably keep this in the stacked position. It would look nice when set on it's side and the CM and SM linked to the LM looks nice too. The antenna for the SM is attachable and is small, so don't lose it.

A complaint that I do have is the base and the reflective material that is supposed to be like a mirror - it's cheesy, poorly made and scratched, especially for the amount of money you pay. At the very least, I would expect them to have it well polished and an adhesive wrap on it so that you can peel it away after everything is in place.

The surface of the moon is a piece of rubber or pliable plastic and it's okay.

Another complaint is that they only give you one ascent stage of the LM. You can either place it in the third stage opened, or on the moon surface. Again, pretty cheap on Bandai's part for the amount of money you pay. It would also be nice if there were depressions where the LM can nicely fit on the surface, as for the astronaut that is on the moon's surface. You can easily lose one of them, especially when dusting or vacuuming. I can see my dog swallowing Neil!

For the flag, it's a sticker and you need to fold it against a small metal pin and then insert that onto the rubber mat. Again, pretty cheesy for the amount that you pay.

I guess another thing that you can say is that the "super alloy" is their sign, but there is no adhesive on it's back to apply to the base. I might leave that off.

Mine came with the splashed down CM. It's looks okay, made out of plastic, would be better if it were made of metal - maybe overkill and can be easily left out without having a great impact on the presentation.

So all in all, I'm pretty happy with it. It's a very nice model and very detailed and it fits well with each part. I don't know how this will compare to the 4D Famemaster, but I think, from what I've heard, it's better than Danbury Mint's. $500 is a bit much, especially for the quality of the reflective base and the absence of a second ascent stage. Maybe half that much would be more reasonable.

One final note, this is not a toy!

Hope this helps out. Now to go to the store and get some super glue and to look at the iPad.

Rizz
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posted 04-03-2010 03:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rizz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by andrewcli:
$500 is a bit much, especially for the quality... Maybe half that much would be more reasonable.
Thanks for the heads up. I'm glad it's a nice looking model, I just had visions of a Super Alloy Saturn V to go with my resin and wood models.

andrewcli
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posted 04-03-2010 03:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for andrewcli   Click Here to Email andrewcli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Coming back after seeing the iPad, another potentially great product, I can stand back and look at it again. I was writing my thoughts down when I was putting it together this morning. Do I have any regrets in buying it? No.

I think for construction, details, and quality, I would give it a 4.5 out of 5. It's really a nice model, despite the plastic. The plastic is very well made and not flimsy or thin. The connection to each stage is seamless and great. You can't see any problems one might see in lower quality models.

This is a model that will sit on a desk or somewhere you want to show it off and not to play with. This is a display model standing next to your other precious items in your collection. On the the other end, the Famemaster is probably something that you can play with, take apart and look at all the nooks and crannies.

For the value to price ratio, I would probably give it a 3 out of 5. The presentation stand is crappy and for the amount of money you pay, it really hampers my complete enthusiasm. I now know why there are four pins and four flag decals, you can't plant it on the mat without bending the tiny rod - CRAP! There is a small tiny hole that you need to find at 9 o'clock to plant the flag - need to follow the footprints. I would expect better in addition to a second ascent stage and a better made CM splashdown model.

However, this model will look awesome stacked on the LUT. I would probably rate the Framemaster higher in terms of value to price ratio, but after reading the other thread, where the price would be somewhere between $270 and $350, it may not be that great. To each his/her own.

andrewcli
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posted 04-03-2010 09:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for andrewcli   Click Here to Email andrewcli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
OK, I was able to find the edge of the film on the reflective base and peeled it off, much better!

cspg
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posted 04-03-2010 11:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by andrewcli:
Hope this helps out. Now to go to the store and get some super glue
As long as you're not named Alan, in your 40s, single, living with your brother Charlie, bored on a Saturday night, and have a stalking neighbor named Rose, you should be alright.

Norman.King
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posted 04-04-2010 03:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Norman.King   Click Here to Email Norman.King     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Andrew, thanks for the insight on the model. Mine’s been stuck in UK Customs at Heathrow airport for the past four days but I should hopefully get it soon.

I want to display mine "split" horizontally on its side stands in a specially made display case. How long is it fully assembled?

andrewcli
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posted 04-04-2010 10:08 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for andrewcli   Click Here to Email andrewcli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Each stage is fully assembled and connecting each stage can be done very quickly. Again, I would be gentle in doing this. I would say it's about 30" in length when stacked.

If you are using the struts to support the stages, horizontally, there is nothing to put together, just lay each stage onto two struts. Again, you cannot lay the CM with the SM connected unless you use the launch tower and BPC to link the two together. The only way to display the CM linked to the SM is to have it angled upwards, linked to the LM. I don't think the launch tower/BPC will link to the SM alone if that is what you are planning to do.

Enjoy!

dsenechal
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posted 04-04-2010 02:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dsenechal   Click Here to Email dsenechal     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This model is actually not made of plastic, but appears to be of the same material as the "cold cast porcelain" that Danbury Mint used for many of its spacecraft models.

For the Bandai Saturn V, this material was by far the superior option. If the model were full die-cast metal, the fit and detail would be comparatively clumsy, and it would weigh a ton. Don't be put off because it's not metal - this is better.

jr-transport
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posted 04-04-2010 03:13 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jr-transport   Click Here to Email jr-transport     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Now we need an N-1 to go with it.

andrewcli
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posted 04-04-2010 06:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for andrewcli   Click Here to Email andrewcli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Oh my, just felt an earthquake here in San Diego. Looked at my model and saw it sway back and forth, yikes!

Norman.King
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posted 04-07-2010 07:41 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Norman.King   Click Here to Email Norman.King     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dsenechal:
For the Bandai Saturn V, this material was by far the superior option. If the model were full die-cast metal, the fit and detail would be comparatively clumsy, and it would weigh a ton. Don't be put off because it's not metal - this is better.
I collected mine earlier today and while I was apprehensive about it being plastic now that I have seen it I agree with you.

The detail on it is very sharp and I’m very pleased with it. It’s going to look great in my display cabinet.

1202 Alarm
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posted 04-07-2010 03:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 1202 Alarm     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Got mine as well (Switzerland). 10/10!

Quite moving for me, as I got my initial Saturn when first I visited KSC in 1969 (aged 3), then built the Airfix in 1980, Revell, bought the Dragon, the Danbury Mint and now this beautiful model. LM and CM are not perfect but I didn't buy it for these. It will be hard to top this, though value for money is not what some of us got a few years ago with the Code 3 sale (Apollo, Gem and Mercury for $50 each!).

jr-transport
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posted 04-13-2010 12:54 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jr-transport   Click Here to Email jr-transport     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just got mine today, on the anniversary of the Apollo 13 launch and WOW!!! what a model. To all of those who are thinking of getting this piece I have two words for you: DO IT!!! It's worth every penny.

And for us Canadians, with the high dollar, now is a good time to buy from shops in the States. It's just too bad the booklets are in Japanese.

Rick Mulheirn
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posted 04-14-2010 03:41 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Took delivery of my Bandai Saturn V this morning and I agree with those who posted previously. It is a very impressive model that is....in my opinion, worth the considerable investment.

SpaceAholic
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posted 04-14-2010 06:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for SpaceAholic   Click Here to Email SpaceAholic     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This thread is worthless without pictures...common, you guys with newly received models dont be shy, please post them!

contra
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posted 04-14-2010 11:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for contra   Click Here to Email contra     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Received the model today. Very pleased with it. Here are some pics...

contra
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posted 04-14-2010 11:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for contra   Click Here to Email contra     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

history in miniature
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posted 04-14-2010 11:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for history in miniature   Click Here to Email history in miniature     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
They should have at least batted the F-1's because it is such a beautiful model.

I'm impressed with their efforts.

jr-transport
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posted 04-16-2010 03:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jr-transport   Click Here to Email jr-transport     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I second that motion; also they definatly should have included a second ascent stage for the LEM.

I display mine on its side with the Revell Block I CSM attached (it doesn't do justice to the rest of the stack) and have the Block II displayed with the LEM inflight.

GoesTo11
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posted 04-19-2010 10:17 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for GoesTo11   Click Here to Email GoesTo11     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks to everyone who posted pics and feedback on this model. Based on what I've seen and read here, I went and pulled the trigger: 44,250JY or US$479.63 delivered. I'll post my impressions when it arrives.

cspg
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posted 04-21-2010 12:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Since the model is made out mostly of plastic, that plastic tends to "turn yellow" over time and that this model is a huge investment, what - if any - protection will you be using (against dust, humidity, light - anything else)?

22pilot
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posted 04-22-2010 08:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for 22pilot   Click Here to Email 22pilot     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
With regards to the Japanese Saturn V model, what exactly does 'diecast' mean?

Norman.King
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posted 04-22-2010 02:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Norman.King   Click Here to Email Norman.King     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by 22pilot:
With regards to the Japanese Saturn V model, what exactly does 'diecast' mean?

There's a good explaination about this towards the bottom of page 2 on this thread.

Go4Launch
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posted 04-24-2010 10:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Go4Launch   Click Here to Email Go4Launch     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Can this model be displayed upright just standing on the F-1s, or is it necessary to use the base with the two bracing arms?

dsenechal
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posted 04-24-2010 10:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for dsenechal   Click Here to Email dsenechal     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It will stand on its F1 engines. However, one little bump and over it goes. Then you will be very unhappy.

tegwilym
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posted 04-27-2010 12:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for tegwilym   Click Here to Email tegwilym     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by dsenechal:
It will stand on its F1 engines. However, one little bump and over it goes. Then you will be very unhappy.
Might have to do what I do with my Christmas tree - secure the top of it too!

I learned that one year when my cats climbed the tree and knocked it over in the living room. It's been secured at the top now too.

GoesTo11
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posted 04-29-2010 11:38 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for GoesTo11   Click Here to Email GoesTo11     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I received my model on Monday. Since others have already posted pics and accurate impressions, I'll try not to be repetitive.

First, shipping: I made my Paypal payment to the seller on Tuesday, 4/20, and was notified of shipment the next day. This past Friday, JapanPost's tracking site said that the model had been released from customs in LA, so I expected a mid-week arrival and was pleasantly surprised when it arrived at my office Monday morning. So, total EMS shipping time from Japan to Denver just six days. Several cSers have emailed me asking who I bought from... I ordered from this page, which currently shows model as back-ordered; I don't know when or if they expect more. I received excellent customer support during the order process, so I recommend them without reservation.

Model arrived well-packaged in a box approximately 30"x18"x18", with a good four inches of packing on all sides of the actual model. As noted previously, the model itself is in a heavy cardboard case with a handle, but the color graphics pictured by contra are actually a "sleeve" that fits over the case, which is a nice simulated-vinyl finish with embossed silver graphics.

The components of the model are seated in foam as shown, secure but not difficult to take out (though requisite care should of course be taken). Just a couple of things to add to previous posts about the model itself:

  • Describing it as "plastic" may be technically accurate (I'm not sure about the actual manufacturing process), but it seems to imply "cheap" or "flimsy." I can assure everyone that it is neither. While certain components, such as the LM and SLA doors, are delicate and should be handled appropriately, the overall finish, fit, and heft are comparable to a scaled-up Danbury Mint Saturn V. (Mine, by the way, still hasn't spoken to me since I ordered the Bandai).

  • Some illustrations show both LM descent stages with legs extended. This is inaccurate. Just to clarify, the LM legs are fixed, not folding. One descent stage has the legs extended for landing, the other has the legs folded for seating in the SLA. Like others here, my only real complaint is that there's only one LM ascent stage provided, but I decided I could live with that.

  • The stands for horizontal display, as well as the vertical support struts, are packed in their own boxes underneath the foam "tray" holding the model itself. Packaging overall is outstanding.
This model represented a significant investment for me, but I'm very satisfied with it. I'm sure the experts here will find a few nits to pick with the detailing, but on the whole I'm glad I bought it. It will make a beautiful centerpiece for my collection.

Norman.King
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posted 04-29-2010 11:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Norman.King   Click Here to Email Norman.King     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by GoesTo11:
I'm sure the experts here will find a few nits to pick with the detailing, but on the whole I'm glad I bought it.
I'm glad you’re pleased with it -- I am mine.

I don't think the experts here have been down on it, quite the opposite. Look at the posts above where two of the best model builders I know have said "I'm impressed with their efforts" and "Yes indeed very nice model" -- take it from me this is no small compliment when you see the work they produce.

With regards to a second LM ascent stage I think everyone who owns this model shares your sentiment. Maybe if enough of us write to Bandai we can get them to sell them separately?

jr-transport
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posted 04-30-2010 10:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for jr-transport   Click Here to Email jr-transport     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was thinking the same thing. this is something we should definitely try to do.

Norman.King
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posted 04-30-2010 10:43 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Norman.King   Click Here to Email Norman.King     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Does anyone have the best contact address for Bandai (email or postal)? Perhaps if enough of us do this to the same place something good may happen?

Tricey
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posted 04-30-2010 01:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tricey   Click Here to Email Tricey     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Firstly, I found out about the Bandai model on this forum last year, so thanks! I pre-ordered from HW Japan and received my order - eventually! - and initially I was very pleased.

My model does have a few niggles though: my LM upperstage has a very obvious join - anyone recommend whether a simple lick of model paint will rectify and if so, any advice on what 'colour' to get?

Also, all my stages have what look like small marks on them; like someone has rubbed them with rubber - ordinary household polish doesn't remove them - and now I wonder if they're actually scratches. I hasten to add, this was how the model arrived.

I normally would contact the retailer, but as we're talking about a retailer in Japan, I think it'll be more hassle than it's worth. They're noticeable if you get close.

Any advice would be gratefully received on 'tidying up' my Saturn V.

andrewcli
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posted 05-02-2010 01:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for andrewcli   Click Here to Email andrewcli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Can you provide any closeup photos of the areas in question?

andrewcli
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posted 05-03-2010 05:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for andrewcli   Click Here to Email andrewcli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Norman.King
Does anyone have the best contact address for Bandai (email or postal)?
Maybe ApolloManiacs can help us out here or can point us in the right direction to contact Bandai. It looks like it he had some input in making the model.

Tricey
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posted 05-04-2010 11:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tricey   Click Here to Email Tricey     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Tricey:
They're noticeable if you get close. Any advice would be gratefully received on 'tidying up' my Saturn V.
As mentioned, here is a photo of the scuffing (found to the right of the 'A' on the first stage):

And here are two pictures of the ascent stage of LM (my larger headache), so you can fully appreciate the top and bottom whereby the join is pretty bad (this is a tiny item and hardly of real consequence, but well, we’re not buying a small bar of chocolate here).

Norman.King
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posted 05-05-2010 08:24 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Norman.King   Click Here to Email Norman.King     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There’s little doubt that the mark on your first stage is a scratch or rub. (I've double checked all of my stages and they're all mark free).

Is it possible this mark could have been caused by the horizontal stand? It's in about the right position.

My LM Ascent Stage also has a visible join line around it but not quite as pronounced as yours.

Tricey
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posted 05-07-2010 04:05 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tricey   Click Here to Email Tricey     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I haven't yet set up the model on any stands; I took each item out to inspect upon delivery, but returned everything back to the box (where it still is today) as I did not want to set it up until I had sourced a suitable display cabinet.

However, it's interesting that you say this sort of mark may be consistent with being put on the display stands; it makes me wonder if I have some form of ex-display version?

I do want to point out that by no means am I downhearted by this. Those of us who own this model can appreciate the actual scale and size of these anomalies (i.e. pretty small!). I still believe that this model is a superb acquisition. It's simply that following the initial posting by others of pictures of their models, I wondered if I alone had received something out of the ordinary and you do acquire something of a sensitive eye when you pay the sort of money we have all paid for something such as this.

2003hdannv
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posted 05-10-2010 04:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 2003hdannv   Click Here to Email 2003hdannv     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just ordered my model yesterday and was told today that it could take up to 2 weeks to find one among the various distributors.If not my order would be cancelled. With back orders like this they just might meet there 1 million mark.


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