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Cardinal Brick

Review: 1787 Crater Cruiser

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Well finally I've gotten into the swing and now we have the second review in the series of Unitron Reviews, the smallest set that was produced in the theme the Crater Cruiser

Set Name: Crater Cruiser

Set Number: 1787

Number of Pieces: 180


Released: 1995

List Price: $18 (USD) or $21 in the catalogue I have


1787 Bricklink Catalog

'Small medium and large tires make this the best space mobile ever for cruising up and down the treacherous slopes of lunar craters. Comes with enough pieces to build a small space craft to hover overhead or check out the next galaxy' – US Shop@Home catalogue


Sadly with all the Unitron sets from 1995 I don't own a box of this set so we will dispense with the normal box picture.

So lets start of with the instruction picture


As a mentioned in another space review Lego space has a lot of planets with a grid pattern


I like the Unitrons they have one of the more interesting patterns, I think apart from one of the Exploriens they've got the best torso printing of the time. In this set with get two of them, one is the Unitron grunt the other the chief though due to his released in 6705 the chief turns up far more often in Europe!


A case of to many chiefs

The Pod

Not a complex build (hardly a surprise there), it's a sturdy little craft though some may not like the fact that the po is open to the outside rather than totally enclosed but then the Unitrons do have full face helmets and tanks on. The one problem is that as far as I know you wont be able to mount this do directly on the monorail without removing some of the engine block. I haven't tested this that'll come in the theme review but I've read it else where.




Front with raised canopy


Rear with engine block

The ground craft.

I'm not to sure about this part of the set, I like the idea but there are a few flaws. The use of three different wheels is good and I like the look that they manage to produce which is different from the normal space vehicles. Again as with the pod some may not be to pleased with the cockpit of the rover being open to the elements but that doesn't both me personally, I would like to have steering of some sort. If the front wheels had been put on a 2x2 turn table I think it would have improved this part of the set. Also I'm not to struck on the huge radar scanning array at the back which I think it good but needs to be folded back in order for the pod to land, I think it would be better to be able to to land the pod with it up. But enough of me talking lets get to the images.








Dish down


With the pod landed on the back

Finally lets look at the set all together


The Rating System

Figures: 8/10 (Yeah I like the Unitron figs.)

Parts 6/10 (Not to bad but nothing that really thrilled me apart from the wheels)

Fun Fun Fun 8/10 (Quite a lot to do here for a set that size.)

Design 7/10 (The backs a little bit bear but I don't think that can be helped)

Price ?/10 (I can't really comment not living in the US when it was out)

Grand Total 29/40 (A fair rating for the set I feel)


I don't think this set is amazing but I do like it. The concept of a ground craft which can launch a scout to see what's over the next crater does appeal to me and I think it's well executed. The pod is solid but nothing spectacular. The ground craft has good and bad I like the wheel arrangement though as I said steering would be nice I also like the huge array at the back. The body does looks a bit long and back without the pod on the back but I don't think that that could really be helped if you wanted to mount a pod on the back.

I like the set and I'd have bough it if it had been available this side of the pond, do I think the premium is fair well it depends how much you're adding on. I paid about £13 including shipping for this which I thought was a good deal. Really it's just a shame that Unitron wasn't fleshed out more so we could have had other things to mount on the back of this set.

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Thanks for this look at the Crater Cruiser, Cardinal Brick! Somehow I missed picking up any Unitron sets, so it's nice to get a look at them.

I've got mixed feelings on this set after reading your review. Looking at the Crater Cruiser in catalogs all these years, I always thought it was a pretty cool vehicle. I've always liked the three sizes of wheels, the detachable mini-ship, and the colour scheme. Upon closer inspection, the vehicle is less complex/detailed than I thought it would be. The side view makes it seem very skeletal and quite full of holes. The set still looks extremely playable, and the minifigures are nicely detailed. I have one Unitron minifigure from the 6705 Space Explorers set, and I like the fig a lot.

Thanks again for the review. I look forward to seeing the rest of the theme up close.

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I like the overall shape of this vehicle, with the wheels of different sizes and the stacked cockpits reminiscent of SP2. The model does have a kind of empty feel though, and the hole below the front canopy is especially noticeable.

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This set isn't bad. It looks really good if you take a step back. Pity there was never a smaller set than this one. (Not to mention the availability outside North America)

As far as the pod interchangeability, I have them all built at home and will have a look later. I don't remember exactly, but I think there was one that didn't fit with another but other than that they all seemed okay?

Okay, so the Unitron sets lacked in number, availability and at times in substance, but the colours were REALLY cool. Unitron was the first space subtheme to have more than 4 main colours (including trans colours): Black, blue, grey, trans-blue & trans-neon green. The figures had yellow, blue, trans-blue, dark grey & grey: the only spacemen to use either yellow or trans-blue since Futuron (not counting the heads of course) and the first spacemen to use any grey.

I counted up my Unitron figures the other day, and I have 1 more chief than non-chief. Stupid 6705... haha.

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Once again, thanks for another Unitron review Cardinal Brick!

I'm not so taken with this set I'm afraid. The openness of the cockpits I can forgive, as that was a common foible of Space of this era. However, I don't like the way they've used varying wheel sizes, it makes it look odd and not as formidable to my eye.

Also, from the side, it looks very basic and sparse. Once again, it just look plain and boring.

Hmm, one thumbs up for Unitron, and one thumbs down from me! Lets see how the rest of the theme performs.

Edited by KurttKrueger

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Pod interchangeability:

6991 Monorail Transport Base - 2 identical pods | 1 dock on buggy & 2 identical docks on train

1789 Space Station Zenon - 1 pod | no dock

1788 Star Hawk II - 1 pod | 1 dock on ship

1787 Crater Cruiser - 1 pod | 1 dock on vehicle

(I also have a MOC vehicle with a docking location)

6991 train, 6991 buggy (& MOC): ALL pods fit

1787: All fit besides the 6991 pods

1788: Only the 1788 pod fits

1788 pod: fits all docks

1787 & 1789 pods: fit all docks except 1788

6991 pods: do not fit 1787 or 1788

Hope that makes sense.

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