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REVIEW: 7752 Count Dooku's Solar Sailer*

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Name: Count Dooku's Solar Sailer

Theme: Star Wars / The Clone Wars

Year: 2009

Pieces: 385

Minifigs: 4

Price: $AUD99.99; GBP 39.15; EUR 67.95-79.99; US $60 at TRU

Resources: Brickset, Peeron, Shop@Home

Count Dooku's Solar Sailer. The most unfortunately named enemy of the Republic also has the most inappropriately named ship, at least from a Lego point of view. Just as the Emperor has no clothes, the Solar Sailer has no sails! Yet most of us can understand why TLG didn't include them; they would be too massive to squish inside the small body of the craft. Wookiepedia has a nicely impressive screenshot to demonstrate this craft in action, first glimpsed at the end of 2002's 'Attack of the Clones'. Perhaps the lack of sails is why so many fans are erroneously referring to this ship as the 'Solar SAILOR', as if Dooku was some sun-loving navy boy who liked to spend his hours nude tanning on the prow of his ship while his pilot droid serves up cocktails :wink:

The fan consensus (if there ever is such a thing) seems to be 'love the ship, hate the price'. I am not going to talk about that aspect much in this review as it has been exhaustively discussed everywhere else; if you still feel the need to rant about price, go and have a long argument with yourself in your bathroom mirror - you have about as much chance as winning as you do of convincing TLG to suddenly slash the price :tongue:. All I will say is that after last year's Twilight release, where everyone complained about how such an expensive exclusive didn't include any new figs, here we have a somewhat cheaper release than that set which includes 4 figs, 2 available only in another medium sized release, an exclusive Pilot Droid, and an exclusive Count Dooku with new torso, hairpiece *and* a curved chrome lightsaber we haven't seen since 2002 - all that and an amazingly designed ship with great functionality as well! :cry_happy: But on to the review!

Part 1: The box, DSS and parts

Standard Clone Wars colour scheme:

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Minifigs are now on the front:

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Back of the box, showing various set functions:

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I love this pose with the Pilot Droid. He seems to be having fun! Whee! Don't try this at home, kids!

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The DSS. One of the most annoying I've seen for a while:

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One instruction booklet. Not available online yet but the code is 4549839 for cache-surfers.

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Random instruction page. We can see already from this glimpse that the build relies on SNOT techniques rather than too much of the Technicy gubbins that effects some Star Wars sets. This is a really fun and interesting little build.

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Parts, bagged:

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Parts, debagged! As usual for Star Wars, the bags aren't numbered but in a 385 piece set you don't really need them to be.

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Nannan pointed out in his review on The Brothers Brick that there isn't really a great deal that's new here part-wise, but does there need to be? There's still a nice mix of stuff and it's all mainly bricks - there are relatively few Technic pins or beams. I prefer a 400 piece set comprised of bricks to a 600 piece one with 200 technic pins :grin:! If you're looking to add to your collection of dark tan or brown slopes, you may find this set interesting. This also means that those who just want to build the ship can bricklink any gaps in their parts collection and construct it that way.

Personally, I can never have enough dark tan. We have 15 1x2 ordinary dark tan bricks, which previously only appeared in 10185 Green Grocer, and then there were only 4 of them. There's also some tiles and small slopes:

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Some of the cockpit/ windshield pieces. As Nannan pointed out, I think the bubble domes in plain bley are new:

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Two of these little Technic pieces which also cropped up in the 8019 Republic Attack Shuttle. They work well as handles:

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Part 2: The Minifigs

Really, it's all about Count Dooku in this set. So brooding! So craggy! So evil! However I really like the MagnaGuards as well, and the Pilot Droid is a good way to get some droid parts in plain white. However for Star Wars fans, so much of it is all about the lightsaber. I wonder why? :look::oh::grin: Here is the Count's shiny new death-dealing device:

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EDIT: Jifel has pointed out that the curved lightsaber is not a new piece and did appear in 2002's 7103 Jedi Duel set. Ta!

It's interesting they went with chrome when metallic silver is in all the other 09 sets. It does look sleek and sexy :wub: I hope we get Asajj's curved lightsaber in silver or chrome in an upcoming set. Here's a close-up:

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Here's the Count himself, with his two MagnaGuards. There is no back printing on the torso. The cloak also seems to be in old brown:

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Doesn't he just radiate evil? :wub: Either that, or he ate something that disagreed with him.

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The new hairpiece, from the back. I think it's fab. It does have that statesman-like, greying-politician feel to it.

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Speaking of which, say hello to the new US Secretary of State!

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In a nice touch, Dooku comes with an optional hood. Here is his Pilot Droid, who really did put his foot in his mouth by having a skele leg as a headpiece. It's a clever idea.

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And to demonstrate why he's so popular with fans, Count Dooku gives us the ending to season 1 of The Clone Wars TV show that we've all been dreaming of :tongue::

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Part 3: The build

This is a fun, not too complex build which operates on a folding box principle; at either end of the midsection the cockpit pieces fold up or in and then various larger sections go on the studded cube in the middle. 2x2 plates with technic pins hold the SNOT sections to the central box.

We start with the flat base, with the pilot cockpit at one end. You can see the connecting white Technic plates with pins here:

g-build1.jpg

The bubble cockpit pieces are the next section to attach. These can swing out, as we will see:

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The assembly so far:

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The central hub which the three remaining sides will attach to:

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Another section, showing the white connecting pins:

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SNOTtastic studs seek Solar Sailer sections:

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Unusually, the small speeder is put together at this point in the build, as it then slots into the back of the ship; normally this would be one of the first or last things you do rather than appearing midway through. There is nothing too exciting about this speeder. The front section is extraordinarily weak, held on by 2 headlight bricks, and constantly falls off:

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With Dooku and the revolutionary new 'Blade-Hold' lightsaber storage system:

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Side view:

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You can recreate the 2002 release 7103 Jedi Duel in a new Clone Wars style using this set and Yoda from the new AAT :tongue:.

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Actually the speeder slots in here:

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And the bubble cockpits close to hold it in place like so:

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Next up, the Pilot Droid's control section:

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It is held in place only by the shape of the 2x4 brick positioned at right - no stud attachments whatsoever! Amazing!

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These 4 long brown sloped sections give body to the skeleton of the Sailer:

h-build4.jpg

Four trans-purple tipped flick-fire missiles plug in 1x1 Technic bricks at the front of the craft:

h-build6.jpg

Another view - notice the grill pieces?

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By pushing the new Technic handle piece at 'A', the flick-fire missiles pop out simultaneously at both points 'B' next to the above-mentioned grills. Another simple but brilliant piece of engineering which also means that your flick-fire missiles aren't constantly falling out all over the place.

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The sections that fold up and out to form the tipped wings of the Solar Sailer are connected via click hinged bricks to the top and base of the Sailer.

Two symmetrical versions of this go on top:

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And two of these on the bottom. The brown 1x3 slope with 1x1 round plate act as stabilisers when the craft is at rest:

h-build9.jpg

<<Begin sticker rant!>>

I'm not usually one to complain about stickers, but TLG has gone loco with the application in some sets this year, making it impossible for mere mortals to apply them with any degree of accuracy. The ones in this set and the Indiana Jones Flying Wing are very frustrating, mostly because there are no stud guides to help you determine where on the piece they should be applied. The stickers themselves are often abstract shapes or curved and oblique angles, which when combined with the isometric viewpoint of the instructions, make it even more difficult to judge where they should be applied. It's not like you get a second chance, either :sceptic: This is worsened by the fact that the box art is often misleading or completely wrong (compare the pics of the hugely incorrect Hyena Droid Bomber with its instructions for the worst example of this) so you can't rely on 'official' set pics as a guide. I wish the TLG would show us an aerial view of how tricky stickers should be applied. If they can do it with technic axle lengths, why not stickers? Take a look:

h-build88.jpg

Come on, TLG! You can do better than this! I know showing the application from behind in this way isn't new, but as I said, the shape of these curved stickers makes it really difficult to gauge! How is an 8 year old supposed to do it? You'd have more luck blindfolded, trying to pin the tail on the donkey! I'd get it completely wrong, burst into tears, and never buy a $AUD100 set from TRU again! :tongue:

<<End sticker rant!>>

Anyway, as you can see, I did manage to get them on when all is said and done. Here's a top view with stickers applied. It looks kind of buggy and creepy, doesn't it? I guess this fits with the Geonosian design aesthetic that Lucasarts was playing with at the time of 'Attack of the Clones':

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Part 4: Done!

And here we have it - the elegant and sleek Solar Sailer! Here's an alternate title-view for Clone Wars haters: :tongue:

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You can see the brown slope stabilising effect in action:

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And there are two long dark grey 'feet' which can be extended to stop it from tipping over when grounded:

j-done1.jpg

Side view:

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Front on view of the Pilot Droid cockpit:

j-done-frontcockpit.jpg

Rear view, showing section where Dooku's speeder is contained:

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And open for a quick getaway:

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Part 5: The sailer sails!

The moment you've all been waiting for - the completed ship unfurls its majestic sail! (This is all happening in your head, OK?) As the pointed tips unclench, the billowing solar fabric blossoms in space and Count Dooku makes good his escape from Republic pursuers! This part of the experience of the 7752 is eminently swooshable and a lot of fun!

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Part 6: Some different perspectives:

Just a few random shots that didn't seem to fit elsewhere, that may give you a slightly different view of the ship.

View from the back:

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A more three-quarter view of the Solar Sailer:

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A more traditional looking space vehicle:

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Part 7: Overall Rating

Playability: 9/10 - Strangely, the speeder is by far the weakest part of the set due to the delicacy of the front section. The Solar Sailer itself works nicely and has lots of different functions.

Design: 9/10 - Fantastic, solid, bricky build with several clever techniques and sturdy as they come

Minifigs: 9/10. Excellent exclusive figure with great accessories, and two extra MagnaGuards

Price: If you are one of the 2% of the population that doesn't think this set is too expensive, copy this text and put it in your sig! Ashoka forver!

Conformity to Local Trade Practices Legislation Concerning Accurate Description of Goods: 0/10. No sails.

Overall: 9/10. Great ship, great figs, great build. What more could you want?

And a bonus extra....

Count Dooku's Chef Droid was never popular at dinner time...

z-dookudinnercaptioned.jpg

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season 1 of The Clone Wars TV show that we've all been dreaming of :tongue:

You know i'm hating you now because of that hmm?

but otherwise great review!

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Awesome review so far.

When this is finished, I'll slam it on the frontpage.

So when are you finished? :grin:

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Nice review Svelte Corps, hope to see the finished one very soon :thumbup:

I think it's odd how the pilot droid's headpiece is a skellie leg - from the back it must look quite odd.

I already have two magnaguards from the starfighter which I got for Christmas, however, the Dooku minifig still looks very tempting...

I love the printing on the face and torso, and I love the new hair (+ the new US secretary of state :grin: ). It's all good with Dooku.

It's hard for me to undertsnad where TLG are coming from with that launchable droid cockpit... Why TLG? (Oh, and why FFMs...)

I do like the design of the ship, but because Star wars is so expensive I'll stick to my plan of Republic Shuttle or AAT.

Hmm... my birthday is coming soon though. Maybe I don't have to buy the Solar Sailer for myself :sweet: ...

Edited by The Rancor

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Couldn't wait.

I've frontpaged it already.

Thanks for reviewing it :thumbup:

I'll read it more carefully tomorrow and index it as well.

Perhaps you could do some pics for me?

I need Dooku* and the Pilot, front, side and rear.

1024x768 pixels please. :grin:

(For the minifig index)

*Both versions (hood/hair)

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Couldn't wait.

I've frontpaged it already.

Thanks for reviewing it :thumbup:

I'll read it more carefully tomorrow and index it as well.

Perhaps you could do some pics for me?

I need Dooku* and the Pilot, front, side and rear.

1024x768 pixels please. :grin:

(For the minifig index)

*Both versions (hood/hair)

This should be finished soon - I always do reviews in one block.

Will do re the minifig pics, probably this evening Sydney time or tomorrow morning!

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You and your awesome reviews always making me want to buy more sets! Great work on the photos and content.

The dark tan and red-brown parts are nice and may sway me to buy this set, may I send you the bill :grin:

All up a nice, sleek, great looking set. Thanks :classic:

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Yay! The new lightsaber is chrome. :cry_happy: That's awesome.

Speaking of which, say hello to the new US Secretary of State!

d-dookuversionhillarya.jpg

:cry_sad:

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There are two point B's where A should be and one A where point B should be. :tongue: And why the Emproers new ship?

Anyways, I really love this set, and everything about it (except the missing sails,) though I hate the minifigs. I made my own Dooku and Magnaguards, and the FA-4 is really weird looking. So the ship and speeder have a great build (Minus the fally-offy part,) and I love the ship.

I made a good choice to buy this without figs from ebay. :tongue: And by the way, I think her hair isn't that gray.

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There are two point B's where A should be and one A where point B should be. :tongue: And why the Emproers new ship?

...

And by the way, I think her hair isn't that gray.

A & B confusion fixed!

I meant Emperor in the sense of Emperor's New Clothes (the ship without sails) but I'll change this too since it is confusing.

As for the hair... it's more the shape... and we all know it *would* be grey if it wasn't for the highlights :wink:

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thanks a lot, very funny to read and PERFECT photos, you do this ship judgment! (just the back looks a bit... unfinished..?)

Again: thanks a lot, was a pleasure to read tonight!

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Great review, but I believe that lightsaber is old... :look:

Anyway, Dooku may be the only guy that looks better CW then normal! :sweet:

jifel

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Great review, but I believe that lightsaber is old... :look:

Anyway, Dooku may be the only guy that looks better CW then normal! :sweet:

jifel

I think you're right; bricklink lists it as appearing in 7103.

Wow, they really are bringing old-skool stuff back for the anniversary :oh:

I will update my review & give you credit :thumbup:

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Great review, but I believe that lightsaber is old... :look:

Well, it's really amazing that they remade it, so we call it 'new' since they're rediculously pricey on BL. :sick:

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Great review Svelty! :thumbup:

While this set is terribly priced, having a chance to ge Dooku and his curved lightsaber is very hard to pass up. The set itself doesn't look fantastic, mainly because it seems a bit unfinished in some areas, but it's pretty good for the most part.

I'll definitely try to get it at some point. Many thanks for the fantastic review! :cry_happy:

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Where did you get this, i didn't think it was out in Australia yet.

Count Dooku, was his jedi name, he is actually called Darth Tyranus.

http://starwars.wikia.com/wiki/Dooku

A good review, i wouldn't mind getting this, but Dooku looks rubbish with that hair, and why does he have a curved lightsaber.

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He has a curved handle, I don't know what you are talking about...

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I never realised it was curved.

I also think its better this way, the sail was just another Lucas crazy idea, there is no air yet alone wind in space, and the sail only opened in space, sort of like how when ships get badly damaged in space they "fall", but there is no gravity.

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a-aatitle.jpg

Name: Count Dooku's Solar Sailer

Theme: Star Wars / The Clone Wars

Year: 2009

Pieces: 385

Minifigs: 4

Price: $AUD99.99; GBP 39.15; EUR 67.95-79.99; US $60 at TRU

Resources: Brickset, Peeron, Shop@Home

nice review . i was wondering do the magnaguards fit inside the set ?

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nice review . i was wondering do the magnaguards fit inside the set ?

You could probably squash them inside either side of Dooku's speeder if you wanted to, but I don't want to damage the capes. I think someone in Nannan's review thread mentioned they had done this.

There's no provision for them in the build itself or any pics of the guards inside the Sailer in the instructions/ box art, so I don't think the intention by TLG was to put them inside.

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