Ohio Valley Soaceport

Ohio Valley Soaceport

Saturday, August 23, 2014

1/32 Vista Lunar Module Revisted

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Apollo in 1/32 Scale
Vista Replica's big 1/32 LM

Of all the topics featured on The Ohio Valley Spaceport Vista Replica's big 1/32 scale Lunar Module has generated the most interest and hits! The Vista LM has become the stuff of legends as copies are few and far between!

Sometime around 2000 Great Britain's Phil Pickles (the owner of Vista) suddenly disappeared from the space model scene along with his kits. There has been some speculation as to why however, nothing has been substantiated. It is indeed sad because he did market a 1/32 LM which (for a resin kit) was decently priced (around $150 US). Sven Knudson's Ninfinger site features a nice "quick look" overview of this massive kit:

Ninfinger Quick Look at the Vista 1/32 LM 

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I was lucky that my order to Vista was filled in December of 1998. I even had very nice correspondences with Pickles. I will have to say that this kit was by far the most challenging that I have built! Over 150 resin, plastic, and metal parts -each of which had to be cut and sanded.... I am not sure I could do another one like this now.

Over the years I have rebuilt this kit two times. In the early 2000's a Japanese toy outfit named Takara produced a number of real space figures and spacecraft. One depicted Neil Armstrong stepping off of a LM landing leg---in---1/32 scale! I always thought that the landing gear on the Vista LM was too long and did not look quite accurate. I resin cast 4 copies of the Takara legs and replaced them with the original Vista gear. I also scratch-built the descent stage with styrene stock as to 1) have a more accurate stage and 2) to reduce the sheer weight of this model. The original kit weighed in excess of 5 pounds!

At one point I had the Vista LM displayed as docked to the Monogram 1/32 CSM. Needless to say the joined models were quite impressive! They also took up a lot of space --- as a matter of fact too much space.

As I am getting older I have come to the conclusion that maybe it is time my Vista LM found a new home. I intend to put my LM up on Ebay in mid-September once I have worked through the logistics of packing and shipping it so that it will arrive undamaged to its new home! I will make an announcement here once it is up for auction. I also plan to sell my 1/32 Monogram CSM separately but, at the same time for anyone who wishes to have both display models.

Monogram 1/32 CSM

My Monogram CSM features the New Ware Models 1/32 scale CSM detail set and Space Model Systems decals. I cannot say enough about New Ware's kit as it makes the old Monogram CSM 'pop'!

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Below are several photos of both the Vista LM and the Monogram CSM. For questions I can be reached at gazunkie@gmail.com

For size comparison here is the Dragon 1/72 LM next to the 1/32 Vista LM
The Vista LM is just under 8 inches in height!
Again, a size reference of the Vista LM

Rendezvous window detail. The graphics are by Space Model Systems decals!
More Space Model Systems decals in the windows.
A view of the descent stage.
The Descent stage engine and radar.
Even though the kit features an interior the Vista ascent stage is a chunk of resin!!
A top view of the ascent stage- note the decal graphics on the rendezvous target- again Space Model Systems decals!
Here is the 1/32 scale Monogram companion piece to the Vista LM
I used Bare-Metal foil for the CM exterior. Additional details by New Ware's 1/32 CSM detail set.
A superb PE Hi Gain Antenna from New Ware!
Beautifully detailed PE panels around the RCS by New Ware!
Markings are by Space Model Systems decals!

That's it for this month! Thanks for stopping by!!!

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