This is an outfit to make a single model of a robot called Ronin (see Fig.1), as ‘on TV’ it says on the box. Also on the box small photos of 3 other models from other sets in the series, called Backlash, Overkill, & Deadblow. They probably have few parts in common with Ronin. The subsidiary name of this Set is METAL MECHANICS and of the 39 different parts in the outfit, 15 are nickeled steel, including 6 N&B of various sorts. The copyright date on the box & model leaflet is 2001 and the present set was bought, new, from UK Ebay in 2004. It was made in China and the copyright holders are given as Battlebots, Inc., 701 Delong Ave. Unit K, Novato, CA 94945; Jaaks Pacific, Inc., Malibu, CA 90265; & a Jaaks subsidiary, Road Champs, Inc., of the same address. A label stuck on the box says KIDZ BIZ, SURREY, KT17 1SB.
The Set The box, 33*20½*6½cm, opens with flaps on its long sides, and is shown, empty, with the bottom flap open, in Fig.2. The clear panel in the top allows a view of some of the parts inside, and they are wired into recesses in a moulded clear plastic tray which sits in a red patterned open-topped inner card box.
The Parts and Contents The parts and contents are shown in Fig.3, with the metal parts, except the Post and the N&B, marked ‘M’. The plastic parts are grey. To give an idea of size the Saw is 6cm Ø, the Track Side Plates are 9¾mm long, and the model is 10¼cm wide o/a.
Most holes are 2.4mm Ø, spaced as needed. Most Bolts are 2.3mm Ø by .4mm pitch; the single larger one, for the Weapon Pulley, is M3.
The Model Sheet It is an A3 sheet folded to give 4x A4 sides, all printed in B&W. The front is as Fig.3 and inside are 11 assembly steps with explanatory text for all. The back shows how to attached the Flag Decals and load the 2x AA batteries into the bottom of the model’s centre section.
The Model The only problem in making it was to work out how to route the Motor’s wires, and having done so, probably wrongly, it was hard to fit the final 4 Bolts. But in general the parts were nicely made and finished, and they fitted together remarkably well.
The model is to be pushed along and the Motor switched on when required to drive the killer Saw. Also the Saw Arm can be moved up and down by hand. This seems a good concept likely to appeal to a youngster, with a nice little model, quite simple but with the powered Saw to do the 'business'. There were however a few problems. First, the Tracks are too tight on the Wheels and don’t move as the model is pushed along unless it is also pushed down really hard at the same time. Secondly, the tension in the Belt driving the Saw is just right with the Saw Arm fully up but becomes tighter as the Arm is lowered, and this makes the Saw slow down. The real problem here is that the bearing for the Saw Pulley is not long enough. Finally the back of the model has to be lifted up to use the Motor switch under the centre section - not, one might think, a welcome interruption at the moment of the ‘kill’.
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