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Old 08-03-2011, 03:26 AM   #1
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Default Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

I decided to jump on the bandwagon and get the famous Bandai Space Shuttle model (Otona no Chogokin) by Bandai in 1/144 scale. The reason why I waited this long was because I was hoping Bandai would make the other Shuttles like the Discovery or the Atlantis - I would get those in a heartbeat since the Discovery spent the most time in space (365 days) and the Atlantis was the "Last Flight." However since Bandai made 6000 units of the Endeavour shuttle, they said they have no plans to make the others. But the Endeavour is cool enough since it was the last of the Space Shuttles to be built (plus I found a way to get it for only $289 NEW out of my pocket instead of the $500-$600 price tag).

Initially I merged my review with Sachiel's review but it just overwhelmed the browser due to the picture count - it crashed when I was looking at it through my phone so I decided to keep it separate. Here is my review of the model (just like the other review, it will be in sections):
• Part 1: Unboxing
• Part 2: Close-ups and Accessories
• Part 3: the start of the Space Shuttle's lifecycle (including preparation of the orbiter to the assembly of the ET and the SRBs)
• Part 4: Loading the Shuttle's payload and Launch
• Part 5: Orbit
• Part 6: Landing

So let's begin with Part 1: Unboxing
The box itself was actually smaller than I imagined (about 18"x16"x8") overall weight it about 10lbs. The top layer of the box consist of some instruction manuals (in Japanese) and different backgrounds for the base. The second level is the Space Shuttle itself (ET, SRBs, and orbiter) along with the payload. The bottom layer consist of the base w/led lights as well as the clear stands that support the model + the small bus.



And here is an overall view of everything that came inside the box (I was a bit disappointed I didn't see the electrical wire adapter that would connect behind the base to an US electrical socket - a few people said they received this).



Part 2: Close-ups and Accessories
The cockpit portion has two layers as seen in the picture below. It's nicely detailed but personally I thought it was a bit unnecessary since no one could see the interior since the windshield is smoked-black like the real thing, plus you will see small seam lines below the Endeavour name to the payload doors.


Another cool feature is the removable OMS pod covers to reveal the fuel tanks - again, a bit unnecessary since this area is rarely seen and since this portion endures some weight of the model when it's place upright against the stand, the cover sometimes pops off if the shuttle isn't placed properly. The gears are very cool - very rare I have a model with functioning gears that folds out as they should.


Next we see the payload (now empty). The doors are double-hinged to allow the doors to be opened flat. I had no trouble opening it, I just use a small toothpick - no paint chips here (some people were concerned about that). The payload is nicely detailed with chrome interior for the doors. In addition to the robotic arm, it has the orbiter boom sensor system, which is a 50-foot extension that has an instrument package (rather than a grapple) on its end to inspect the orbiter's thermal protection system. The boom has also been used to support crew members during spacewalks, but is not an arm. Great props to Bandai for making a robotic arm that twist and turns like the real thing. They even have a small Ku-band antenna that folds out which was pretty cool.


Here we see the underside of the orbiter, the detail of the tiles is really nice, I had no trouble accessing the gear doors, all I used was a toothpick.

Part 3: The start of the Space Shuttle's lifecycle including the assembly of the External Fuel Tank (ET) with the Solid Rocket Booster (SRB).

The preparation for a space shuttle launch begins over 400 days before the actual flight - every inch of the shuttle is inspected. As with this model - every centimeter was inspected for quality (so far I'm impressed, no huge gaps or paint anomalies that I could see).





The Orbiter is truly a remarkable piece of art - basically everything that operates or moves on the real thing moves on the model (from payload doors to flaps/nozzles/airbrakes...etc.) Although I do admit I wished more metal was used in making this model - only the underside is metal, the top is primarily plastic. The orbiter in 1/144 scale is roughly around 10 inches long and weighs 13 oz. Nevertheless, great props to Bandai for making an accurate Space Shuttle. They even got the proper drag chute profile at the bottom of the tail. The Endeavour was the first shuttle to mount the drag chute.


393 days to launch - preparation of the External Fuel Tank (ET) begins. This is the largest element and the backbone to the space shuttle - it is also one of the only portion that isn't reused. In 1/144 scale, it is roughly 12.5 inches long and weighs 1.3 lbs. As mentioned previously, it is nose heavy. The top portion is mainly made of metal while the middle portion feels plastic. The attachment posts that connects the SRB/ET/and the Orbiter together is metal. They have dimples that allows them to "snap" together so you know its connected. It actually holds everything together pretty strong, I can hold the model just by the External Tank and hang it upside-down without the orbiter detaching (although I wouldn't recommend it)

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Old 08-03-2011, 03:27 AM   #2
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

97 days to launch - assembly of the Solid Rocket Boosters (SRBs). In real life they assemble the rocket together in portions in the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB). Bandai saved us the trouble by giving us the pre-made version. The SRB has a diecast metal nose and engine nozzles, but the majority is made of plastic. Thus giving it a total weight of 4.4 oz for each SRB. I love how Bandai made the nose of the SRBs to have a slightly off white-coloring just like the real thing - it would be nice to see if they weathered up the Orbiter itself but I know many collectors might be against that.


51 days to launch - the SRB and the ET is finally joined together and is now awaiting the final piece - the Orbiter which is now leaving the Orbiter Processing Facility.


38 days to launch - the Shuttle is finally hoisted up and connects to the ET and SRB and rolls out for the 3 mile journey to the launch pad. Bandai's Shuttle stands at 39 centimeters (15.3 inches long) and 2.2 pounds heavy. (17.1 inches tall when mounted on the display base)






Part 4: Loading the Shuttle's payload and Launch

18 days to launch - Payload installation completed


Launch Day:

The crew gets strapped in and is ready for a kick-*** ride



The Shuttle clears the tower and climbs towards the Heavens



Two minutes after launch - the SRBs separates


The ET is jettisoned just over 10 seconds after MECO (Main Engine Cut Off) and the shuttle is now in orbit

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Old 08-03-2011, 03:28 AM   #3
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Part 5: Orbit

Day 3 into mission - The Orbiter opens the payload doors and performs a Rendezvous Pitch Maneuver, a backflip to expose its underside for the station crew to photograph


Day 5-7 - the astronauts performs a spacewalk and finishes unpacking the cargo to the international space station




Day 10 - The bay doors are now closed and the crew begin preparation for their return to Earth


Part 6: Landing
After 13 days in space, the Space Shuttle finally returns home




Gears down and locked


Touchdown!





My final thoughts on the model - Bandai made a wonderful piece of art (it is definitely my center piece of attraction in my model airplane collection). Although I wished Bandai used more metal in the construction, I still love it. There is still a good "heft" feeling when holding the model. Considering the Space Shuttle era has just ended, every collector should pay tribute to this great aircraft for all its services and sacrifices. Who knows, we may very well see the "next" space shuttle soon with this little guy...
http://www.diecastaircraftforum.com/military-model-aircraft/96944-dragon-wings-boeing-x-37b-orbital-test-vehicle-drw50377.html

We will miss you, watch this tribute video!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b2ziRRYDfJo
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Old 08-04-2011, 03:19 PM   #4
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Incredible model........Almost half off the going rate for this beauty?
Do tell us how you got it for that price or at least give us a hint.
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Old 08-05-2011, 12:24 AM   #5
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

here's how I got it for a good price (could be applied to any models)
http://www.diecastaircraftforum.com/...tml#post899311
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Old 08-05-2011, 07:22 AM   #6
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperKungFu View Post
here's how I got it for a good price (could be applied to any models)
http://www.diecastaircraftforum.com/...tml#post899311
Damn, no Chase card for me, guess I'm gonna have to pay full whack then!!
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Old 08-07-2011, 07:11 PM   #7
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Well this is interesting....apparently Hitler is flying shotgun in my space shuttle

lol, I noticed it the other day when I saw that little black mustache....and then I noticed his hair....and his posture.....(that all can't be a coincidence can it?) Is Bandai trying to tell me something?
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Old 08-07-2011, 11:17 PM   #8
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Here's some night shots of the beast


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Old 08-08-2011, 03:56 AM   #9
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Beautiful!
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Old 08-24-2011, 02:38 PM   #10
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperKungFu View Post
here's how I got it for a good price (could be applied to any models)
http://www.diecastaircraftforum.com/...tml#post899311
hmmm...

it says I cannot access to this page.

Is there a lock on this thread?

I just registered this site in order to see that page.

But now I still have no access...
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Old 08-26-2011, 06:35 PM   #11
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

So I splurged and ordered one from Aviation Megastore in The Netherlands for €463 including shipping. Not a bad price.
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Old 08-27-2011, 12:43 AM   #12
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

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Originally Posted by neil330 View Post
So I splurged and ordered one from Aviation Megastore in The Netherlands for €463 including shipping. Not a bad price.
Thanks for the suggestion.

I'll do some more research and compare it with other websites.
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Old 08-29-2011, 10:45 PM   #13
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Wow, excellent
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Old 09-01-2011, 01:49 AM   #14
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

One problem I'm still facing is where the bloody hell to display the shuttle. It's too tall to fit within my shelves inside my curio cabinet (unless I move the shelves around but then everything else would be unbalanced).

The shuttle stands a little over 17" tall with the base.

I've thought about getting an acrylic or glass case to enclose it but my efforts to find a suitable one has been futile. I would like to get something like 12"x12"x20" (inside dimensions) mounted on a simple wooden base but most vendors have quoted me a price tag over $100+. I did try out the largest hobby base display case at legend toys and hobbies:
Legend's Toys & Hobbies - Your alternate source in the latest in Action Figures, Plastic Models & Collectibles.

but even that was like a half inch short. It was cheap way to display it though:


I ended up returning it since the tip was touching the top, that's why an ideal case would be something in the 20" tall range. I'm inching closer to buying this case from ebay which has a reasonable price:
eBay - New & used electronics, cars, apparel, collectibles, sporting goods & more at low prices

If anyone has the case above, please post some pics.


Another idea I had was to make a custom stand to have it displayed horizontally in an angle. Something very similar to this:


I tried to replicate it with the flexidisplay stand but the weight of the model makes me nervous to put it on the stand for long periods. But it would look something like this with the flight patch:


If I have it horizontally like the picture above, then I can actually fit it within my regular curio cabinet and I don't need to find a extra small case to display the shuttle outside my collection. What do you guys think? Get a smaller case for it or get a custom stand?
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Old 09-01-2011, 01:08 PM   #15
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Very nice SKF, a very detailed model from the looks of it.

If you really don't feel safe with it on the stock stand then get a custom one, but if it's alright and you're just worrying about it too much then i'd say leave it. Although it does look quite nice going vertical.
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Old 09-01-2011, 01:46 PM   #16
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

So I just spent the last hour getting used to my new model....and HOLY SH1T, this thing takes detail to a whole new level. No offense, the pictures are amazing, but they just don't do this thing justice. I am lost for words. Just a few q's though. Is there any easier way to open the doors, as I found this to be tricky. Also how do you put the plaque on, I just folded the sticker around to be double sided, prob not right but working for now. I am delighted with the purchase, just can't stop staring.
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Old 09-04-2011, 12:07 PM   #17
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

To open the bay doors easier, use a toothpick and put it at the hinges to lift it up first. Lift up and the pull it to the side to open.


As for keeping the sign on, I used a little white glue. White glue is this hobby best friend
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Old 09-04-2011, 03:30 PM   #18
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Quote:
Originally Posted by SuperKungFu View Post
To open the bay doors easier, use a toothpick and put it at the hinges to lift it up first. Lift up and the pull it to the side to open.


As for keeping the sign on, I used a little white glue. White glue is this hobby best friend
That definitely helps. Must get some glue to keep the sign on. Still can't get over the detail. However just curious if you got a plug? I'm just using batteries for now.
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Old 09-05-2011, 01:26 AM   #19
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

nah I didn't get a plug, I believe if you ordered it from Japan you would get a white box with the plug in it. But strange how a lot of people never received the wire. No matter, even if I got it I wouldn't have used it since it's inside my cabin.
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Old 09-05-2011, 09:35 PM   #20
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

I can't help but wonder would we ever see a Buran Space shuttle in the same detail/scale/material as Bandai's Shuttle. Probably it will never see the light of day but it is nice to dream. Personally I always liked the Buran shuttle program, although I like the America's orbiter more, I do fancy that awesome booster the Russians had. Here's a few picture of the Buran shuttle back in the day, anyone agree with me they would like to get this if it's made into a model?







Just look at all those boosters! Makes the American version look primitive.





Even the orbiter itself could have a crazy engine outlook


Imagine if someone made the Buran shuttle on the An-225 in 1/144 scale....that sucker would be HUGE. I would buy it in a second. I believe they might make this in 1/200 scale next year...I'll have my wallet ready then.

And one more final comparison between the two:

I do admit, the Russian version has more of a "modern" look to it.
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Old 09-08-2011, 08:16 AM   #21
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Hi.
Does the space-shuttle gear rolls?
Thanks
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Old 09-08-2011, 10:08 AM   #22
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

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Hi.
Does the space-shuttle gear rolls?
Thanks
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Yes they do.
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Old 09-08-2011, 10:54 AM   #23
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Quote:
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Personally I always liked the Buran shuttle program, although I like the America's orbiter more, I do fancy that awesome booster the Russians had. I do admit, the Russian version has more of a "modern" look to it.
I'll second that. I always found both shuttle programs very interesting. The Buran shuttle maybe even more than our shuttle because of the mystery of it. Their booster set up is fantastic looking! Someone should take that diagram and put our shuttle on the Russian boosters!
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Old 09-08-2011, 11:00 AM   #24
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Ok so I decided to do it haha!



Looks pretty good.
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Old 01-07-2013, 10:05 AM   #25
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Wow the Bandai Shuttle is amazing, great review. Its something I would like to own if only I can find one. The detail is wonderful. Such a shame they wont be making anymore
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Old 01-07-2013, 06:01 PM   #26
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

I like the look of this very much. Only problem is that 1:144 scale introduces a third scale into my collection. 1:72 military aircraft and 1:200 Commercial aircraft.
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Old 01-07-2013, 07:27 PM   #27
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Default Re: Otona no Chogokin Space Shuttle Endeavour by Bandai 1/144

Very Very cool model! Would love one! Amazing details. Its stunning!
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