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In the Lego Star Wars series of sets, there have been six different versions of Slave 1, the ship used by Boba Fett, the bounty hunter. These six versions have ranged from small, almost pocket-sized models to larger ones measuring over a foot in length. Although he plays a relatively minor part in the overall Star Wars stories, his character has captured the imagination of many of the story’s fans. As a result, his ship has also become an object of great interest.
In the Star Wars story, the bounty hunter Boba Fett plays a key role in Episodes V and VI. He is the bounty hunter hired by Darth Vader to find and capture Han Solo and to bring him to Jaba the Hutt. His ship, Slave 1, was first owned by his Father, Jango Fett, who “acquired” it during his escape from the prison on Oovo IV. The ship was a prototype Firespray class patrol ship that he managed to steal during his escape.
He named the ship Slave 1, and began a program of significant upgrades and re-armaments. He took the ship to the Kuat DriveYards and had their powerful drive engines shoe-horned into the ship’s hull, taking up two-thirds of the available space. The armaments added to the ship included twin blaster cannons, two rapid-firing laser cannons, and two projectile launchers, each of which could hold up to three homing missiles. There was also a mine laying system that could be equipped with seismic charges.
The models of the Slave 1 that have been produced by Lego reflect much of this weaponry. The sophistication of the models and the level of detail has increased greatly as different models have been released. The first version, Lego 7144 was released back in 2000, and although it captured the basic elements of Slave 1’s design, it was fairly primitive, as it was lacking a lot of the specialized elements that were added to later models. It looked a lot like something a builder would produce using just generic Lego parts.
The next version released by Lego was designated Lego 7153. It is in this model that the quality and level of detail begin to show a big improvement. The cockpit was now a special piece of smoky plastic, and the trim elements of the upper side of the landing shoe were special pieces as well, to give it the smoother, more rounded look it needed. This model was larger, having more than twice the number of elements (358) than the 7144 version (165). This set also came with mini-figures, unlike it’s predecessor.
The Lego 6209 Slave 1 model came next, in 2006. It was again a larger model than the previous one, with 537 elements. It is at this point that the design of Slave 1 as a Lego set really begins to come into its own. The number of special elements increases significantly, giving the ship a much more polished appearance. The ship incorporates a cargo hatch that opens to allow the Carbonited Han Solo to be loaded aboard. The completed ship included the mine launchers, as well as the missile launchers. The twin cannon arrays are also present. The four mini-figures (five counting the Carbonited Solo) are the largest number to be included in one of these sets up to this time.
The most recent version of Slave 1, Lego 8097, is the model currently available and still in production. It is again larger than its predecessor, but only marginally – 572 elements vs. 537. The finish and quality of the model have improved yet again, with even greater use of special element to create a more finished appearance. The cockpit cover can be opened, and a mini-figure seated inside. This set contains three mini-figures, plus the Carbonite skid, which is designed to allow the Han Solo mini-figure to be inserted into it, for really great realism. The finish details on this latest model are really impressive, and the completed ship has a real look of authenticity to it.
The other two versions of Slave 1 were small (think pocket-sized) versions of the ship. One, the Lego 20019, was a promotional item that was sent out with the January 2011 issue of the Brickmaster Catalog. It was not intended for sale in stores. The other small set was actually part of a two-ship combination released in 2003 – it was packaged with a small model of Obie-Wan Kenobi’s Delta-7 Aethersprite Class Starfighter. All or these sets are still available in the secondary market, so it’s not too late to add to your collection.
write by Alger