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Moebius Models 1/32 scale "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" Flying Sub

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Moebius Models "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea" Flying Sub
Kit: No. 817
Scale: 1/32
Manufacturer: Moebius Models,
Price: $74.99
Comments: Injection-molded, 101 parts
Pros: Big model; full interior; easy assembly
Cons: Lack of detailed paint and assembly directions
Issue Published: September 2009

Following the course of its Seaview submarine model from the 1960s television series "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea," Moebius Models has released a big 1/32 scale model of FS-1, the Flying Sub that was deployed from Seaview in the 1960s science fiction/adventure show produced by Irwin Allen.

The hull is molded in yellow plastic, interior parts in light gray. The clear parts are well molded, especially the front windows. Also included is a large, clear plastic stand. The six-page instruction booklet is printed in full color and features several exploded diagrams as well as color photos of a model under assembly.

Unlike most other projects, I started the submarine by painting all of the components. I found that the front piece (03) did not fit well to the upper and lower hulls, so I glued it in place on the lower hull and filled the gaps with Squadron white putty. Once it was dry, I sprayed the upper and lower hulls with Tamiya white primer, then chrome yellow spray lacquer. Unfortunately, the instructions have no exterior painting guide; I painted the trim with Tamiya's blue spray lacquer according to the box art and a few still shots I found on the Web.

The interior parts were painted according to the painting chart on the instructions. I spent a lot of time picking out small knobs, panels, and switches with various colors. I cut small circles out of a solid, light blue decal sheet to use on the small screens of the instrument panel. You can install a hatch on the lower docking ring or use an alternate part that allows you to attach the model to a large clear stand. It looks like Moebius might have originally considered adding landing gear, as the bay doors have detail on the insides and unused pegs that might be locators for the bay enclosures. I knew that the lower docking ring would be under a lot of stress, so I melted over the locating pins as well as using glue to make sure it would not come loose. I modified the upper docking ring as shown in the instructions so it could be removed to better display the interior.

The fit of the interior pieces is good. I especially like the interlocking tabs on the wall panels, which produce a snug, precise fit. Because I had already installed the nose piece on the lower hull, I had to modify the front window pieces so they would fit. I simply removed the lower half of the lower locating tabs so they could be slipped into place. With the interior in place, I glued the hull halves together, filled the upper seam of the front nose with epoxy putty, then touched up the paint work.

Moebius used studio plans and a 3-D scan of a prop from the show to make its Flying Sub what it calls "the most authentic model kit rendition … to date" - and I have to say the model really looks the part.

I spent about 21 hours building my Flying Sub. If you have any interest in vintage TV or science fiction, this kit is a must. Already, there are aftermarket additions available for the kit, including lighting packages and vinyl painting masks. Any modeler who is comfortable painting large glossy models will enjoy this one.

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