Lake County SpacePort 

                                                                                       "Ad Astra per Formae"

1/48 Soviet "LOK" Orbital Moon Ship

by Fantastic Plastic

Manufacturer: Fantastic Plastic Models, LLC; Lake Forest, CA
Cost: $100 + shipping
Scale/Size: 1/48 scale
Parts/Media: Resin kit with PE Metal detail sheet, 150+ parts
Instructions: CD-ROM included, provides diagram-style instructions
Decals: Authentic color marking decal sheet
Paints/Supplies: Numerous metallic paints, CA glue
References: Reference photos provided on CD-ROM

Molding/Casting Quality: Molding accuracy is very good, with notable exceptions of small parts that require extensive trimming and cleaning.

Detail: Detail work in resin moldings is outstanding.

Accuracy: As this is the only model kit of the LOK available – excellent.

Fit: Part fit was excellent overall, with some adjustments needed.

Ease: This is a seriously challenging kit, as is not meant for beginners.

Decals: Decals recommend an overcoat of clear film prior to use.

Overall: This was a very "challenging" model to build. However, the challenge is rewarded by the excellence of the end-product.

After decades of denial about their failed Moon-landing program, the Russians hahave finally brought some of their un-flown space hardware out into the light of day. Fantastic Plastic is the first, and as far as I know, only provider of a model kit of the Soviet-era moon landing craft, the “LOK” for "Lunny Orbital Korabl" or Orbital Moon Ship.

Done in 1/48 scale, the same scale as the Monogram “First Lunar Landing” model, as well as later Dragon Models Apollo CSM & Lunar Modules, it shows a direct comparison to the North American/Rockwell Command/Service Modules (CSM) flown in the U.S. Apollo Program. A contrast that becomes very clear in the very primative look of the LOK when placed near the CSM.

The kit is primarily a resin kit, but has a photo-etched metal detail sheet included, which provide a number of critical detail elements for the ship.

Like the other Fantastic Plastic kit we’ve done, such as the Space Station V from 2001 and the Soviet "LK",  the LOK model was indeed challenging, with many very small and delicate parts that require extreme precision to place. As the listing recommends, this is "not a beginner’s model.”

The instructions are color CAD-rendered diagrams, showing part placement, provided as individual “jpg” files on an included CD-ROM. The CD also provides a number of reference drawings and photos of the real LOK prototypes, currently on display in Russia,  for proper detail orientation and decal placement.

The CAD Patterns were rendered by Scott Lowther. The casting of the resin parts was done by Mana Studios.  The photoetch sheet was provided by Paragrafix and the decals were provided by Canuck Models. Obviously,  Alan Ury of Fantastic Plastic knows “who to call” when great modeling supply work is necessary.

For any “Child of Apollo,” this kit provides a look back to the time when the U.S. and Soviet Programs were both marching towards the Moon. If only the Soviet N-1 Moon Rocket had worked…

The "box art" of the kit's package, shows a full assembled and painted LOK Model. It serves as an additional reference for the builder.

A look at the resin parts bag, inside the shipping box. There is much more below...

The photoetched metal parts plate, produced by ParaGrafix.

A full set of printed panels, showing parts by image and number and orientation and location of exterior detail elements. Very little was overlooked in the production of this complex model. 

Finally, a set of fully illustrated assembly and painting instructions is also provided. 

This image shows the Equipment Section of the LOK after completing the assembly and attachment of exterior detail elements. Thew entire assembly was painted flat white.

This shows a view of the Orbital and Reentry Modules, after assembly and installation of detail elements. The complexity of the detailing items is easily seen here. 

The assembled LOK, during fine detail painting and final attachment of exterior items that stretch from the Equipment Module to the rest of the ship. 

Initially, the LOK model was to stand alone, but soon I decided it was far more efficient and appropriate to combine the display of the Soviet Orbital Moon Ship with that of the Soviet Moon Lander, the "LK." I created a display system which supports the LOK at an angle above the LK, resting on its "moonscale" base. The entire model system would reside inside a protectiveve acrylic display enclosure. 

The LOK/LK Model now resides on a shelf, next to the 1/122 scale model of the Soviet Moon Rocket, the N-1, produced by Altaria Models and built back in 2018. I included a flight patch for the Soviet Cosmonaut Corp to showcase the ensemble.