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6880 Surface Explorer Review

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6880 Surface Explorer

Year Released: 1982

Piece Count: 80

Minifigs: 1

List Price: $7.50

Set 6880, Surface Explorer was one of my last Classic Space sets purchased. It offered new black accessories that were previously grey during the "Blue Era". A new open radar dish replaced the classic solid grey dish, and the set included my first YELLOW SPACE MINIFIG! Wow, YELLOW! - in fact, to this day, he remains my only non red or white classic space fig.

Starting with the instructions (TIP: Save your instructions! It helps many years later when you go to build Classic Sets):


No picture was included on the backside

The yellow space fig:


Here's a shot of the black accessories. The large black gun/space deviceattaches to the radar dish:


The Surface Explorer has two mechanical arms, one being a digger/scooper:


And the other (my favorite), the claw:


I think this is the only set I have with the "claw" piece

I've always loved this radar dish with the black scope:


Also a very nice addition to Classic Space was these rubber wheels. This set included 12:


The vehicle had two steering wheels for driving either direction (or perhaps one was for the radar dish), but as the picture on the instructions shows, here's a shot of the front:


And the backside:


You will notice that one of the grey closed hook pieces has been replaced with a white one. I am missing this piece.

A view from the top:


And the complete set:



I think this is a timeless space set. One could easily add space figs from any era, and they would work perfectly. I may just add a few of the Mars Mission figs (and/or a few orange pieces) and see how it looks.





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Will you be reviewing the Starfleet Voyager as well?

(and if so, the combo model?)

I don't own the Starfleet Voyager, but I did Mars Mission-up the Surface Explorer.

Here's a link to the MOC: Mars Explorer

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i never really liked this one... it all looked a bit over sized... however.... a yellow minifig!!!! and four ladders!!!!! in my book, very very very very rare!!

i guess Lego was looking for some replacement sets at the time... 6822, 899, 894 most defenitely needed some update and no doubt 6880 filled it up quite nicely, for a few years anyway...

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This was another set that got me as a kid... but I didn't get it. The mass of wheels is just so cool. :wub:

(Now that you've finished your reviews maybe I should do some of my pathetic collection. :wink: )

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Nice review. That thing looks like an "interesting" ride. I am trying to picture controlling both arms and driving...

All the best and God Bless,


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btw, what i really hated about the older space sets was that you often had to get an antenna through the modified plate, as you can see on brickster's last photo. very often there was A LOT of friction between the ring and the antenna, and several of these rings just broke off when i was young... I lost some ladders too, btw... RIP :sad:

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Man im going back in time to tell you to keep reviewing all the sets from my childhood in the future on a site called Eurobricks on a thing called the Internet! :tongue:

Seriously, i really enjoyed this set with its scoop and claw, and to echo Snefroe i was always a fan of ladders too (unless they broke :sceptic: )

Bob the Builders early years On!

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