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Starfleet Runabout

Name: Starfleet Runabout
Class: Danube
Magazine #: 32
Release Date: 2015
Length: 139.95mm
Material: Die-Cast & ABS Plastic
Manufacturer: Eaglemoss Collection

The Starfleet Runabout, first seen in the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine series, is the 32nd release in the Eaglemoss Collections Star Trek Starships Collection. The Danube-class Runabout was a ship used almost exclusively in the DS9 series, with the exception being the episode “Timescape” in the sixth season of The Next Generation. Interestingly, a set for the Runabout’s aft living quarters was built for TNG episode and it was never used again to depict a Runabout’s interior. They operate with a minimum crew of one or more, and are equipped with warp drive, transporters, and accommodation for long-duration missions. The Runabouts assigned to DS9 were usually named after various rivers on Earth.

Starfleet Runabout, Initial Impressions

For this model, Eaglemoss decided to use the USS Orinoco as the primary Runabout to model it on. I always felt that the Runabout looked like a rectangular box with a couple of warp nacelles thrown on for propulsion, and this model is no different. The Runabout is a bulky model, but satisfyingly so. It’s got a bit of weight to it, but I expected it to be a little heavier. You can attribute its light weight to the fact that the model is mostly plastic, with the nacelle struts and the top of the hull being die-cast metal. The detail is outstanding in most areas of the ship, with very minor complaints to its overall look. Unlike many of the other ships in the collection, the nacelles don’t have a lot of the translucent plastic on them, the only parts were the red bussard collectors, the blue area of the nacelle was painted on. The impulse drives also have the red plastic, but the location that they’re in make it difficult to notice. There’s not much to see on the underside of the Runabout, to be hones it’s very plain.

It’s a nice ship, don’t get me wrong, I actually do like it, but I just feel that there are a few issues with it. For once there are instances where the seam gaps are noticeable, I believe this comes down to a production error. The paint job for the most part is done well, there’s no aztecing going on, it’s a plain grey color although there are a couple of spots where there are other colors used. The stickers are applied nicely, although there was some wear on one, which can be seen in the pictures below. Other than these issues, I feel that the Runabout is a good looking ship and one that I welcome to the collection.

As is standard, each model also comes with a stand to display the ship, the base of the stand was solid and sturdy, and the piece that attaches to the base and holds the ship seemed to hold it well will little wiggle room. The stand is inserted into the rear of the warp struts and holds it in place nicely.

The Magazine

As with each collection piece, a numbered collectors magazine is also included. The Starfleet Runabout is issue 32 of the series and as with the prior magazines I was impressed with the detail the magazine went into regarding the Runabout. The issue gives a detailed profile of the ship with images from the television series as well as model images. The issue also discusses the concept design of the ships as well as interviews with those that worked on the design and construction of the ship for the various productions. It also has a section that discusses the filming of the ship for the various series and the approach that was taken to highlight the ship for television. All in all, it’s an interesting addition to the ship itself.

Overall Impressions

Overall, I like the Starfleet Runabout. While it may have a couple issues, it’s clear that Eaglemoss went to great lengths to get all of the little details of the ship right. It looks and feels great, with a nice little heft to the weight, and the quality of the ship itself and the detail that went into producing the accompanying magazine makes this well worth the purchase. The Starfleet Runabout is a worthy addition to the series.

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