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Looking for Input on Starting a Star Wars UCS Collection

BanditPorkinsBanditPorkins Member Posts: 5
edited January 2013 in Collecting
As a child I was an avid Lego builder and as I grew older, I slowly lost interest. After about a 15 year hiatus, I've rediscovered me love for all that is Lego. As a child, there were no movie licensed products. I am a very large Star Wars fan and have completed a few "play" sets over the past month or so.

I've discovered the Ultimate Collector Sets and would love to get my hands on one. I would really like the X-Wing or Falcon, but I cannot justify spending $1500-$3000 for one of the sets. I'm currently looking at either purchasing the B-Wing or Obi Wan's Starfighter, but I'm having trouble deciding which to purchase since both seem like good entry level pieces. I am a huge fan of the original trilogy, so I'm drawn to the B-Wing (even though it isn't near as cool as the X-Wing, Y-Wing, etc.) and it is right under 1500 pieces for $200. I have read some reviews and it seems like most people were not to happy with the purchase and durability. Obi Wan's fighter hasn't been out of production very long, so is still affordable ($100ish for 600 pieces) and all the reviews I've read seem to be good.

I just need some advice for my first UCS purchase and what would be the best buy and which is the best set of the two. Any feedback would be much appreciated.


  • RennyRenny Member Posts: 1,145
    edited January 2013
    I would highly recommend the Imperial Shuttle. You can still get it for under MSRP. I have built most of the UCS sets and next to the Falcon, is my favorite. If you had to pick from the 2 you mentioned I guess I would go with the B-Wing although you can wait for a sale on that one.
  • samiam391samiam391 Member Posts: 4,492
    From what I read, it seems you are in the $100-$200 range.

    Here's my take:

    Obi Wan's Starfighter is a nice set. Brilliant color scheme, and a neat display piece. However, for a UCS set, it just doesn't have that "wow" factor. It doesn't dominate a room like a UCS SW set should. You may find people that say otherwise, but that's just my humble opinion.

    On the B-Wing, I don't have one yet, so I can't say much about it. From the pictures it looks nice, but if the reviews read "durability issues" than it probably has... well, durability issues :) If you are just starting out, I wouldn't dive into a set that you may struggle and get frustrated with.

    Either way though, I'd still vote B-Wing. From my experience with the UCS Starfighter, I just can't bring myself to recommend it.

    If you are willing to dish out $25 more, the UCS Imperial Shuttle is at, I believe, a modest $225 right now and only 400 copies left on (unless LEGO pulls a fast one on us again) before it gets discontinued and starts going up in price. Personally, if I were you, I'd go with that model. I have one and it is just fantastic and one with a definite "wow" factor! :-)

    If you don't want to spend the $25 extra, fly with the B-wing! Whatever model you end up choosing, best of luck and I hope you thoroughly enjoy it!
  • BastaBasta Member Posts: 1,259
    I haven't built the B-Wing, but it is on my list to get, as far as durability goes being an UCS they are not really meant for swooshing\playing etc. just displaying, so not sure if this is a real big problem.

    With Obi Wan's Star Fighter I know in the after market the price has not risen much from where it is currently, but that could change so if you plan to get both in the next year or so, it would probably be better to get the Star Fighter first, as the B-Wing should be around for another couple of years.

  • zippityzoomzippityzoom Member Posts: 86
    I'm with @BanditPorkins. Spending upwards of $1k for the MF UCS would be too painful. I've on
    I've seen the UCSImperial Shuttle and I can attest that it's an impressive set. At around $200 it's virtually a steal.
  • BanditPorkinsBanditPorkins Member Posts: 5
    Thanks to everyone for the input. I will have to take a look at the Imperial Shuttle and then I will make my decision.
  • FollowsCloselyFollowsClosely Member Posts: 1,329
    Go with the imperial shuttle, no question. I very much enjoyed the b-wing, it is # 4 on my list. Right after the falcon, is, and Death Star.
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas Member Posts: 8,404
    Imperial Shuttle - 10212

    Forget the other two for now, unless you really want them, Imperial Shuttle is now end of life, so this is the time to buy it.

    B-Wing will be around 2 more years, Jedi Starfighter will slowly go up, but it will be around for awhile too, even being EOL.
  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,169
    edited January 2013
    Yes, as everyone else has said, if you have the money right now, buy a shuttle in the next few days before it is out of stock in IMO it is second only to the UCS MF in it's display wow factor. It is huge, pictures online don't do it justice as to it's sheer size until you see it next to something else very large

    If you want a UCS MF in the near future then bricklinking is a possibility to save some serious cash, especially if you already have plenty of loose Lego parts that are required. I recently built one for £400, although admittedly I had about 1/3 of the parts already. If I hadn't been fussy for internal part colours that won't be seen, I could've built one for about £250. Bricklinked parts are generally cheaper in the US, so you might be able to do better than me on that score, as Duty and VAT payable on receipt in the UK pretty much excluded me from making any sizeable US bricklink purchases
  • DiggydoesDiggydoes Member Posts: 1,079
    As all others said,go for the IS!!!! This was my second UCS-set (after the AT-ST) and i love it! The wings are a little repetive to build and are mainly technic-pieces (my thumb hurts when i think about the build) but the result is overwhelming,and as a "bonus" there are two ways to display this beast,in flightmode on a stand or in landingmode on feets!!!
  • jockosjunglejockosjungle Member Posts: 701
    How much do you reckon to build a MF that looks good on display with no thoughts for the internal appearance?
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,331
    ^^ Are the feets made out of legos?
  • mountebankmountebank Member Posts: 1,237
  • RomanticWarriorRomanticWarrior Member Posts: 248

    How much do you reckon to build a MF that looks good on display with no thoughts for the internal appearance?

    I've read posts (don't remember where) of people doing it for about $600-700. There are two pieces that will really set you back if you want to make it 'perfect'. They are the gray boat riggings on the back of the Falcon, and the printed radar dish. You can relatively cheaply substitue black boat riggings and a plain radar dish.

  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas Member Posts: 8,404
    ^UCS Falcon used to be doable for $600, but if I recall, it no longer is, even if you sub out a few parts.

    A lot more than just the boat riggings and dish have become expensive as multiple people have bricked linked sets.

    Anyone do it in the past month?
  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,169
    LFT: I may be the one of last ones to do it here.

    Jockosjungle: Some parts are significantly cheaper through Lego lost parts service, so consider more than the bricklink price only. If there is any large single part that costs more than £0.70 (probably same in dollars), or any small part costs more than £0.25 on bricklink it is most likely cheaper through Lego.

    Most of the internal framework can be subbed for alternate colours, except the mandible frames, as the edges will be seen. I got the dish "relatively" cheap, but the biggest single hit has to be the rigging, unless you're prepared to get black and paint them grey. Get old light grey levers, they are very cheap vs light bluish grey and if you want, swap out the levers onto light bluish grey lever bases (that come with black levers).

    Some parts have been superceded for newer versions e.g. cones, 2x2 plates etc, the new ones won't look appreciably different but may be a tenth of the price. Rule is, if there is a letter after the bricklink identifier and the part appears pricey then try the next letter e.g 3021a is pricey, try 3021b.

  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,169
    I posted some useful info on the bricklinking UCS MF thread, especially on parts acquired cheaper via lego directly vs bricklink. Some parts have a huge price gap between the two sources. Yellow technic angles and 3x2 wing shaped bricks were the 2 parts that stand out.
  • DiggydoesDiggydoes Member Posts: 1,079

    ^^ Are the feets made out of legos?

    Hmm well somehow i thought that "feets"is the plural of "foot",i guess i was wrong?!? So a little off-topic what does "feets"actually means?
  • mountebankmountebank Member Posts: 1,237
    edited January 2013
    Diggydoes said:

    So a little off-topic what does "feets"actually means?

    "feets" doesn't mean anything, it's simply a grammatical mistake. There's a homophone "feats".

    This might amuse you:
  • DiggydoesDiggydoes Member Posts: 1,079
    ^thanks for the clarification :)
  • cheshirecatcheshirecat Member Posts: 5,331
    ^^^ it was more just an opportunity to joke about the American term 'legos' which sounds very odd to us, although annoyingly I find myself using it now when chatting with my family. Anyone else this side of the pond notice the same? Anyway, no offense meant.

    Back on topic, the IS is gorgeous and if I had the inclination to display a large star wars lego set it would be my first choice. The death star a close second but as that would be played with i'd spend my life putting everything back, just right.
  • BanditPorkinsBanditPorkins Member Posts: 5
    Update: I followed the advice of everyone in this thread and purchased the Imperial Shuttle off of Amazon. Cheapest I could find was $240. I'm very excited about getting building it!

    I'll v e getting the Jedi Starfighter and the B-Wing later this year.

    Thank you for the help!

  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,290
    Congrats! I'd like to throw #10174 Imperial AT-ST into the ring for a future purchase as well. The aftermarket price on these haven't escalated like many of the other UCS models and you can still get a new copy for under $200. I also happen to think it's one of the better models, and with a 4.6 rating on Brickset, it seems that I'm not alone.
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas Member Posts: 8,404
    ^ Yes, UCS AT-ST is a great build...

    UCS General Grevious is often overlooked, and quite frankly was a really cool build in my opinion.

    UCS TIE Advanced is also worth getting, it looks sweet on the stand and is bigger than you think.

    In terms of price per part, 10143 DS 2 is actually not yet completly crazy, it can still be purchased new for right around 20 cents a part. Expensive compared to what it once was, but not as bad as UCS Falcon.

    UCS ISD, 10030, is a very impressive ship in person and if you can snag a used one for under $700, I'd take that as well, the pictures of it just don't do it justice.
  • BanditPorkinsBanditPorkins Member Posts: 5
    I've actually seen the 10030 Star Destroyer in person and it is massive...
  • samiam391samiam391 Member Posts: 4,492
    ^It's an incredible set. One of the few to use magnets. Unfortunately you usually have to adjust the sides every once in awhile because the magnets slowly lose their strength as the set ages creating a a large, long gap in the middle.
  • LegoboyLegoboy Member Posts: 8,827
    ^ Never had a problem with my magnets during the 2 years it was displayed. I lie. I had trouble with on side losing grip. Realised after much investigating that one or two of the magnets had their poles reversed. Once corrected had no problems.
  • richoricho Member Posts: 3,830
    UCS Imperial Shuttle is in my view the best bet at this very moment.
  • samiam391samiam391 Member Posts: 4,492
    ^Mine is past two years displayed, but perhaps it is a unique scenario of weak magnets (for mine).

    It would be just my luck to buy the one copy of 10030 that has weak magnets...
  • LegoboyLegoboy Member Posts: 8,827
    ^ I recall there were lots of posts online with people having problems with keeping their lower panels connected. I eventually came to the conclusion it was due to the builders wholly relying upon the magnets and not pinching the outer edges tight and so connecting the 2x2m plates properly. I really couldn't find fault with mine and that's all I could think of. The magnets were barely required once the outer edges were pushed together tight.
  • samiam391samiam391 Member Posts: 4,492
    ^My lower ones are fine, it's the ones on top that I have the most trouble with. Nothing a simple correction every year doesn't fix though.

    Maybe my 10030 Destroyer is a specific model that the Emperor meant to recall.
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas Member Posts: 8,404
    I think that 10030 is just right, the ones in the movies didn't actually work all that well if I recall, so perhaps the whole ship is just a lousy design. :)
  • Brick_ObsessionBrick_Obsession Member Posts: 656
    I would start with the current sets available to you and your budget.

    Starting with the B-Wing and Imperial Shuttle are safe bets and you will be very happy with them. I would totally disregard that after thought called the Jedi Starfighter. It's embarrassing.

    Once you have those sets, and nothing else comes out that intrigues you then I would start trying to get some of the older ones. The AT-ST and Tie Fighter are great sets and will come at a some what reasonable price. Before you know it, your collection will pick up steam.

    Good luck
  • DeadareusDeadareus Member Posts: 264
    You've done a wise thing by starting with the Imperial Shuttle as it will be gone soon. It's a beauty and you will love seeing it displayed in your living space.

    My TRU still has Obi Wans Starfighter in stock. On sale for. $53 or $58 this last week I think (in Canada). You should be able to snag this one relatively cheaply.

    I would recommend just focusing on what's still available for retail price right now.

    While the AT-ST certainly is a cool set (as is the x wing/ ISD/ DS II/ etc etc etc... Lets face it, they're all cool sets) it can be expensive going back and getting sets that are no longer available at retail cost.

    I only started into the hobby about 14 months ago and I've still not acquired all the UCS sets that are on the shelves right now. Mind you I've been picking up the modulars/superheroes/star wars/Ninjago sets as well.

    The order of purchase for whats still available SHOULD be:

    (Someone please correct me if I'm wrong)

    - Imperial Shuttle
    - Death Star (more of a play set than a display set. I purchased it as I know once its gone i'll want one)
    - SSD (should be a good sale or two left with this set, as low as $320 recently?)
    - R2 D2 (would wait for a sale on this as well)
    - B Wing (same)

    Wait for some sales (May 4th) on what is still out there. I actually don't think I've paid full retail for any of the UCS sets I own.

    Obi Wans Starfighter ($59.99 + free shipping)
    Death Star (10% off + TC 14 + Holiday set + PAB box [in store])
    Imperial Shuttle (20% off + TC 14 + free Shipping)
    Super Star Destroyer (20% off + TC 14 + free Shipping)
  • DeadareusDeadareus Member Posts: 264
    Personally, I really like Obi Wans Jedi Starfighter.

    It was fun to build and I think it looks great.

    It may hold sentimental value for me as it was my first UCS set and basically the first set that I purchased for myself after having our based several sets for my son.

    I don't know. It gets a lot of hate.... But not at my house. I say go for it if you can find it for 50-60 dollars.
  • BastaBasta Member Posts: 1,259
    edited January 2013
    @Deadareus I think the main issue most have is that it was released as a UCS set, it was just too small to be one.

    Also if anyone a actually has one brand new for $70-$90 shipped to Australia Send me a PM? Can send without the box if it makes postage cheaper (would prefer box though). Thanks :)
  • mrtonytjmrtonytj Guest Posts: 214
    To be honest, when people come round and see my lego room the obi wan UCS is actually one(of the 200 sets i have) where people go "WoW look at that" and i think "really?" And i have some pretty spectacular sets! I don't know what it is about it but poeple who aren't that really into lego really like it?
  • kwkwkwkw Member Posts: 1,209
    edited January 2013
    The UCS Jedi Starfighter is my third favorite set behind the UCS IS and the Ninjago Fire Temple. It was a fantastic build and looks amazing displayed. It only gets a bad rep cause it was in the movie for like 2 seconds but that's ok with me cause i got it for a great price since no one was buying it lol your loss haha :p my advice is to grab it now before everyone wakes up and sees this set as the great one they missed
  • BrickDancerBrickDancer Member Posts: 3,639
    ^It was in Ep. II for much longer than that when Obi Wan SF went against the Slave I, then landing on Geonosis.
  • OldfanOldfan Member Posts: 706
    edited January 2013
    ^ and ^^ Some "original triology" fans are probably just upset that the Jedi Starfighter was released in UCS scale before the A-Wing, B-Wing, Nebulon-B Frigate, SSD, Slave I, Twin-Pod Cloud Car, Landspeeder, and all the other great vehicles from Ep. IV-VI!

    BTW I have a copy (bought it at a slight discount), and I'm happy to have it.
  • ecmo47ecmo47 Member Posts: 2,101
    Not sure if somebody has already said this but scan Craigslist. I have found several decent deals on USC models. Many have no box and are probable missing stickers but you get a nice model without breaking he bank.
  • pvancil27pvancil27 Member Posts: 588
    mrtonytj said:

    To be honest, when people come round and see my lego room the obi wan UCS is actually one(of the 200 sets i have) where people go "WoW look at that" and i think "really?" And i have some pretty spectacular sets! I don't know what it is about it but poeple who aren't that really into lego really like it?

    Because if you are not into lego, you dont think about good building techniques. And if you are not a SW fan, the Star Destroyer is a big grey triangle, the SSD is a longer triangle, the USF MF is a grey circle with some red dots, the AT-ST is a grey box on stilts. But the Obi's has enough colours to make it stand out nicely, especially in a sea of grey.

  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas Member Posts: 8,404
    ^ And that is why UCS Imperial Shuttle will do so well, because it isn't a bunch of grey...

    I wonder how well a white ISD would look. After all, they are supposed to be white! :)
  • bellybutton290bellybutton290 Member Posts: 453
    edited January 2013
    Imperial shuttle all the way and the b-wing without doubt both still available without needing a second mortgage (only just still available in the case of IS). Would agree with the wow factor and should do well in the after market in both cases don't get the old x-wing just yet as a new one is rumoured. I'd also throw R2 in there aswell again a certain wow factor, instantly recognisable unlike the other two I mentioned to non sw fans and a very good price.
  • LegofanscottLegofanscott Member Posts: 622

    ^ And that is why UCS Imperial Shuttle will do so well, because it isn't a bunch of grey...

    I wonder how well a white ISD would look. After all, they are supposed to be white! :)

    On the other hand though, the IS doesnt look all that special in pictures, you really need to own one, build it and see it in person to justify paying the price tag, will people in a few years time who havn't got one be willing to spend the extra money on it if they have never ever seen one in person?

    Havnt seen the b wing in person but that also doesnt look all that great in pics, i imagine that won't be the case seeing it in person though.

    An exception would be 10179, ive never even seen that set in the flesh but even in pictures it looks immense.
  • ShpadoinkleShpadoinkle Member Posts: 420
    For what it's worth I didn't really want the B-Wing until I saw a completed one at the Lego store. It is seriously huge, much bigger than the pictures indicate. Personally I'm hoping for a May 4th sale and plan to cash in my VIP points to get mine!
  • monkeyhangermonkeyhanger Member Posts: 3,169
    ^I think some of the UCS sets do that. I was never fussed about the IS at anywhere near RRP until I saw one in the flesh. Before I saw it, I imagined it to be half the size it is and therefore poor value. Same with the SSD, not on size, but it didn't seem enticing in print, but I want one now. I still don't think i'll want a B-Wing - not a SW vehicle I was ever a fan of, it was always X-Wings and Y-wings for me as the iconic rebel fighters.
  • ShpadoinkleShpadoinkle Member Posts: 420
    I've always been all about the A-wings and B-wings. After all, it was a combined assault from both of those fighters at the battle of Endor that destroyed the Devastator, the star destroyer from the iconic first scene of "A New Hope"!!! ;-)

  • bellybutton290bellybutton290 Member Posts: 453
    Both b-wing and IS are soooooo much better than any picture could show especially in regard of size. I went to buy the IS when I first went to the lego store a couple of years ago and turned away empty handed because it was way bigger than I expected but went back and got it eventually. Same thing happened with the b-wing.
  • CaptAPJTCaptAPJT Member Posts: 223
    edited January 2013
    Personally I think the B-Wing is awesome in the flesh and well worth the price tag. Personally i'd reccomend R2D2 which is a great UCS set, instantly recognisable and great on display.
  • bellybutton290bellybutton290 Member Posts: 453
    ^I mentioned it earlier for the exact same reasons you state and would certainly agree with you. The price is also good considering the amount of pieces your getting.
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