"The eagle has landed." Today is the 50th anniversary of the first moonlanding. In honor of that event, LEGO has released the 10266-1 - NASA Apollo 11 Lunar Lander. Today we take a look at this beautiful set.
This is not the first version of this Lunar Lander. These came before the 10266-1:
And of course there is the nano-fig scale version in the 21309-1 - NASA Apollo Saturn V from 2017
That set directly became my favorite non-Technic set ever. It’s both a great building experience, and an impressive end result. It combines my love for LEGO with my geek-side for space travel. So when I got the chance to review this set, I directly took it. The main reason for releasing this set, is the 50th anniversary of mankind’s greatest technological accomplishment. At first glance, this new version seems to be the most accurate. It of course helps that it’s also the largest. With 1087 parts, it is more than double the size of the second largest, the 7468-1 Lunar Lander with 468 parts.
Celebrate man’s first moon landing with this LEGO® Creator Expert 10266 NASA Apollo 11 Lunar Lander building set—developed in cooperation with NASA to mark the 50th anniversary of a historical event that captivated the world. This collectible model features a highly detailed replica of Apollo 11's Eagle lunar module, plus a depiction of the lunar surface, complete with crater, footprints and a U.S. flag. The descent stage comes with gold-colored landing pads and panels, opening camera and laser hatches, and a ladder, while the ascent stage has a detailed interior with room for 2 astronauts. Finished with an Apollo 11 Lunar Lander nameplate, this display model makes a great centerpiece for the home or office and provides a challenging and rewarding building experience full of nostalgia. Includes 2 astronaut minifigures with NASA decoration and golden helmets.
The set is designed by Lars Joe, who normally does Architecture work
The box contains a total of 8 bags numbered 1 through 4, 1 unnumbered bag with large parts, and the instructions and sticker sheet in a plastic seal. Two things I noticed in the bags: The unnumbered bag contains large parts. This happens more often in sets, and will probably have to do with the way they are filled in the factory. But the bag contains a couple of black 4828 Plate 2 x 16, while bag 1 also has a few of those. Also a bit weird: All parts of the unnumbered bag are used in the first part of the build. So why not just numbering the bag as 1? But I’m nit-picking. It’s just when something doesn’t directly makes logical sense, it starts rambling around in my head.
The instructions measure 270 x 193 mm. It has 123 pages with 179 building steps. In the front of the book is information about NASA and the Apollo project, along with some information about the designer Lars Joe Hylding. Throughout the building instructions are trivia pieces about the lander.
The pdf can be downloaded here.
The sets contains 1087 parts and 17 spare parts. There are 15 colors and 33 categories, with a total of 195 unique part/color combinations.
Main colors are:
- Light Bluish Gray: 58 parts, 343 quantity
- Black: 52 parts, 342 quantity
- Dark Bluish Gray: 36 parts, 189 quantity
Main categories are:
- Bricks Sloped: 19 parts, 76 quantity
- Plates Special: 15 part, 47 quantity
- Plates Round and Dishes: 12 parts, 36 quantity
The first thing that you’ll notice is the amount of Metallic Gold parts in this set. There are 6 different parts, 74 in quantity. For the 3960, the 3070b and the 27263 this is their first appearances in this color. Also a lot of stickers show gold. This is all needed for the reflective material on the craft to protect against extreme colds and heat in space.
The 27925 appears in Dark Bluish Gray for the first time, for the 27507 it’s the second time in this color. The 35459 appears in Light Bluish Grey for the first time. The 23443 appears for the second time in Pearl Gold.
The 973pr4746c01 is a new print:
Also 4162pr0070 is a new print:
There are 2 minifigures in this set:
Bag 1 builds the lunar surface as base for the build. Nice detail is are the footprints near the flag.
Bag 2 builds the first part of the lower part of the landing craft. There are some very nice ball-joint connections to create a perfect octagonal shape. There are also some details like the oxygen and fuel tanks, that later almost disappear in the rest of the build.
Bag 3 completes the lower part. A lot of Metallic Gold tiles are used here. There is quite a bit of repetitive steps in this build because of its symmetry, and this was certainly the most tedious part. The legs are very cleverly done. It must have taken several tries to get it all to fit so perfectly.
Bag 4 builds the return module that houses the astronauts. Not a good place to be when you’re claustrophobic.
Well, I can keep it short. This set is simply amazing. The end result looks great and realistic. The build process is good, with some very clever techniques. Only small downside is the repetitiveness of some parts, but it’s nowhere near some other Creator Expert sets. I really love this set and it will get a place right next to my 21309-1 Saturn V in full view above the television. This is a set that will both please lovers of NASA or space in general, and people who love a good building experience.
Parts- and build photographs by Nathan (© 2019 Rebrickable)