Monday, 29 June 2015

Space Quest 15 model set

I was tempted to start this post with a countdown, but I have used that recently...

Nice solid looking model
The first of the new autumn releases to get the once over is the new Space Quest15 model set. This set introduces three new parts to the system including the latest in a long line of nut-less fixings. Don't throw your hands up in horror, this one actually works and it is not used exclusively, rather as an additional part when it can prove to be useful.

New set, new box!
The most obvious new part is the new plastic moulded nose-cone. This has plenty of fixing holes and in addition it has 'nut retainers' moulded into the interior. This means parts can be fixed to it without having to get a spanner inside to hold the nuts.

Nose cone - I think we might see more of this piece...
The second new part is the plastic, flanged plate. This is a versatile new part that I think will be a mainstay of the future system. I know there will be people who will always dismiss plastic parts but hopefully parts like this will change your mind. The parts are designed to fit together neatly or be used individually. in this model they make the back of the launch tower.

I was not too keen on these bits but they are growing on me
The third new part is probably the most contentious, mainly because of the attempts to produce such a part in the past. This push in fixing is small simple and very effective it has taken a lot of work to get this just right. It will hold with just enough force to stop it falling out but is easy to remove. It is ideal for blind fixings as used here to secure the nose-cone to the body of the rocket. They also have another use, as you will see when we get around to talking about the Mountain Rally set.
The new plastic pins work surprisingly well
These are some of the first of the truly new parts to be designed and introduced by the Spin Master's design team and it is obvious that a lot of thought has gone into them. For years Meccano have been trying to make the system 'simpler' by doing away with nuts and bolts, or just the nuts, as they tried with the Xtreme sets of a few years ago.  The new push-in pins have been introduced for a purpose and are intended to complement the existing fixings, not replace them.

This, and the other new models to follow, are so new we have not had time to build anything other than the box-art model. But I am sure we will be finding some alternative models to build with the parts in the near future! That aside, the model builds very easily and quickly from the instructions and, as far as I could see, there were no mistakes or anomalies in the assembly sequence of this model.

Ready for blast off!
The model is good and solid when finished. Plenty of play-value is included, the tower retracts by way of a hinge and the nose cone is easily separated from the rocket, by removing the aforementioned pins. This is a nice set with a good selection of classic and new parts. If you like white Meccano, there are a few bits here to stock up your collection and if, like us, it is the zinc you crave, you will not be disappointed.



  1. I did see a mock up photo somewhere of a space ship using three of the nose cone parts. Is there going to be a bigger space quest set or do we have to buy two or three sets to get enough parts. Spares of these special parts in blister packs would also go down well

  2. Hi Gary,

    Yes you might well have seen another model that uses the cones as a few pictures were taken unofficially at the various toy fairs but I cannot give you any details just yet, so stay 'tuned'!

    Unfortunately Meccano will not be selling spare parts in blister packs, or any other form of packing. They have said openly that they will not stop others making spare parts identical to those in the sets, so long as they are not sold as Meccano.