Wednesday, November 19, 2014

EMvTW 05 - Romulan D'Deridex Class (B-Type Warbird)

NOTE:  You can click on most pictures to get a larger view of them.

Welcome to the fifth installment of what I am now going to call the "Eaglemoss vs. The World" series.  In this article we are going to take a good look at the Romulan D'Deridex Class Warbird.

My current collection of this type of ship is comparatively small when compared to my Galaxy, Constitution Refit and NX class ships.  I currently have an Eaglemoss, a Furuta, a Hallmark and two MicroMachine models.

Per Memory Alpha and Beta, "The warbird design referred to as D'deridex-class, B-type warbird, or Warbird class was one of the largest and most powerful mainstays of the Romulan Star Empire. It served as the backbone of the Romulan fleet during the later half of the 24th century."  they go on to say that, "The uncloaking of a warbird of this type in 2364, during an encounter with the USS Enterprise-D on the edge of the Neutral Zone, signaled the end to fifty-three years of Romulan isolation.  Over the next ten years, these warbirds, under the command of both the Romulan military and the Tal Shiar, participated in numerous encounters with Starfleet and the Dominion."

If you would like to read more official stuff on this type of ship, feel free to check out the following links:

D'Deridex Class Information:  Memory Alpha LINK and Memory Beta LINK

One of my MicroMachine models was attacked by a gigantic space faring feline.  Luckily, I have two so we can still take a very quick gander at the MicroMachine model.


I have to say that Galoob did a nice job detailing this ship.  They did a fine job of shrinking such a large vessel down to such a small scale.

Eaglemoss vs. Furuta vs. Hallmark

Next up is what I like to call "the gravy shot", the one picture I wished I had seen long ago, and the main reason I started this blog.

I found a serious lack of  comparative data out there showing the various small scale pre-built and pre-painted ships available to the collector.  And so I set out to provide this information myself and hopefully help someone make a wiser decision in which model to buy.

Eaglemoss vs. Hallmark vs. Furuta 

Eaglemoss vs. Hallmark vs. Furuta 

As you can see, the sizes are not really that close so we'll be basing our opinion mostly on details alone.  However, when we get down to pricing later on in the article, if you are like me, size will matter, especially given the cost of one of these ships.



WARNING!: When I review these models, I usually don't focus on the stands or the magazines, HOWEVER, I'm going to make an exception for this one.  The stand for the Eaglemoss model just down right SUCKS!  

It does not grip the model securely and the slightest vibration causes the model to begin an attack dive off whatever you are displaying it on.  

This has resulted in me breaking my original model's nacelle off and I had to purchase a new model as the the broken piece disappeared into the far reaches of space (my dining room).  Don't trust the stand.  Don't use the stand.  And that is all I'll say about the stand.  

I have to say, this is one impressive model.  It is also pretty hefty in that the top wing, neck and head are all metal. The sculpting and molding process for the plastic and metal parts have given the ship some nice definition.  All sorts of panel lines were etched in, giving the wings a nice "feathered" look to them. Other neat details were added in as well.

The paint work is mostly well done.  The ship is done up in a darker green with some mottled weathering done all over the outer surfaces.  The inner wing surfaces are missing this extra paint and just look a bit odd without the matching paintwork.  The bottom of my model shows a lot more (maybe too much) mottling than on the top.  And while we are looking at the bottom, there are also some visible grey splashes/streaks along the edges.  I suppose they are meant to be further weathering, however, it looks like someone just slopped some paint accidentally on the model.

The "head" of the ship is rather impressive with all of those painted in yellow windows.  Even with some of the paint not lining up correctly with the molded window details, it still is an impressive sight.

And given the amount of windows that they had to paint, I'm going to be a bit forgiving this time as the misalignment is not really noticeable from a distance.  I personally would have lost my mind trying to paint those by hand.  And let's face it, you have to forgive Eaglemoss once you notice the Romulan empire logo right on the forehead of the ship.

The nacelles on the Eaglemoss model are well defined when it comes to the molded details, but are lacking the mottled effect the rest of the hull has, thus causing them to stand out a bit like a sore thumb.

The model is missing clear plastic parts that we have started getting accustomed to with Eaglemoss, and they painted the inside of the nacelles instead.

All in all, this would be a really nice model to have sitting on display on your desk, that is, if it would actually stay in it's display stand.  😦



It is now time to take a look at the smallest of the "Big 3", and also the most expensive.  

I like to point out when I'm reviewing a Furuta model that this company is a Japanese company that produced a series of gashapon toys.  Gashapon toys are meant to be nothing more than cheap little $6 bubble gum machine prizes.  I like to point this out to my readers so that they can take any critical reviews I may make in the spirit it is given.  I am in no way expecting these toys to be on the level of a Hallmark, Eaglemoss or Hot wheels toy.  I found a neat video about these types of toys and you can check that out at THIS LINK.

That being said, I was very pleased with Furuta's rendition of the Warbird.  The molded details are nice with all the obligatory parts of the ship given thier respective dues.

Furuta did a fairly good paint job on her as well.  They chose to heavily weather the model which ends up giving her a look like she's received an very uneven tan at the beach.

When you take a closer look at the ship's "head" you can see that Furuta also added in plenty of windows to help give you a sense of scale for this ship.

Parts of the ship are slightly out of proportion, like the warp nacelles and parts of the neck, but they probably needed to do this to keep thier toy durable.

The disproportionate nacelles are also lacking a lot of detail both on the outside... well as on the inside.

The joins and seams are very noticeable when you focus on the nacelles. 

This is one of the rarest Furuta ships out there and at times is rally hard to find.  I actually paid $89 for mine when I purchased it several years ago (2013).  Because of this pricing, I would usually tell people that there are cheaper and much nicer looking alternatives if they wish to get one of these types of ships.



Ahhhhh... and now we'll talk about Hallmark's 1995 version of this ship.  This was my first rendition of the Romulan Warbird that I ever owned.  What can I say about it?  I think Data best summed it up when he said, "It is...  It is...  It is green. "

The molded details are OK, but not as good as Furuta's or Eaglemoss'.  

And there is no extra paint on the ship either.  It's just the plain green plastic.  The only thing that Hallmark does better is that they use clear green plastic parts in the sections that light up.  

Unlike Eaglemoss and Furuta, this model is missing all those tiny window details that give you the sense of size.

Looking at the model and comparing it to pictures of other manufacturer's models of this ship, it clearly has parts that are out of proportion.  

The nacelles stand out the most as being a little oversized, and this is probably because of the lighting and wiring that they had to install.

While the outer parts of the nacelles are plain and smooth, the inner part, which contains the light up grill work has some nice definition molded into the plastic.

Given the prices I find for this ship, you truly get what you paid for.  I hate to bash Hallmark, but this ship is a prime example of a poorly done model by them.  Sometimes, they knock them out of the park with an awesome model, and times like this, they flush it down the toilet.

Photo Credit: Hallmark

Although I cut the wires off of mine, I was able to find a picture of one when they are lit up on a tree light string.  I hated the wire on mine.  The wire placement on the tail end of the ship throws it completely off balance it you wish to display it.


And that is all the pictures and comparisons I have to share on this ship at this time.  

It's weird pattern that of the big three models, the smaller the ship gets, the more expensive it gets.  The Furuta ship is considered rather rare and I've actually seen it going for $90 before, however at the time of this article, there were several available online at a much cheaper price.

As for pricing, I will continue with the tradition of rounding up the most inexpensive Buy-It-Now prices from eBay at the time of this article's (re)writing (January 2018).

Eaglemoss = $25
Furuta = $70
Hallmark = $8
Micro Machine = $5

NOTE: Prices were researched last on January 29th, 2018.  You can also currently order the Eaglemoss model right from the company themselves for around $23 (shipping unknown).

We now come to the part of my article where I like to give you my opinion of which ship gives you the "best bang for the buck", which is my rough way of telling you which one is the best one to get, for the best price.  To put this in a nutshell, when I write these, I am trying to give my opinion of which model is the best for the least cost.

This is a no-brainer for me to make a call on.  The best bang for your buck is the Eaglemoss ship, hands down, no competition.  Even though you are paying $17 more for it, Eaglemoss' attention to detail for that price makes it an easy choice and will give you a great looking model for your small scale fleet.


Every once in a while, I'll have a little extra to share with you.  This article is one such case.  About 20 years ago, I built the 1:3200 scale AMT Romulan Warbird that was part of the three ship Adversary Set..  Unfortunately, I never painted her.  When I got back into modeling small scale ships, this model proved to be too big for my new collection and just sat in a box.  My son saw it and asked if he could paint it up and this is what he came up with.


He used Testor's Jade Green Spray Paint for the base coat and the effects are rather cool looking.  The ship's skin has this neat shimmering effect as you turn it in the light.

As always, I hope you found this article useful and informative.  If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please feel free to comment below.

So for now, "Live long and prosper!!!"

Additional Links To Photos Of My Collection:
Eaglemoss     Furuta     Hallmark
MicroMachine (Good     Broken)
Comparative Shots

Other Reviewers Take On The Eaglemoss Model:
Some Kind Of Star Trek
Star Trek Starship Collection

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