The Catacombs The Merchandise Guide
Compiled by Martin Willey


December 2018/ January 2019, UK £195. Limited edition of 200 (box individually numbered). Item number SSMC 1

The moonbuggy is the first release in the Studio Scale Masterpiece Collection series, in scale (1:24) with the 44 inch Eagles. It was announced on 1 September 2017. In December 2017 it was announced to include 2 Last Sunset oxygen capsules. By February 2018, the capsules were no longer listed A "lunar display" was listed, but not included in the shipping mode. Originally scheduled for August 2018, it was announced as released in December 2018, but actually shipped in January 2019 (at the same time as the 1:72 scale Immunity Syndrome Eagle/glider set).

A small 25 x 15 x 20mm moonbuggy (1:72 scale) was released by Sixteen 12 in their 2006 Gift set and their 2018 Special Edition Episode Eagles.


Packaging is a card box, 20.5 x 15 x 10 cm. On one end flap is the limited edition number (a sticker), on the other, the feature bullets:

On the bottom of the box are various photos (only one is of a model moonbuggy, and it is not the 1:24 version). The text:

Before the cataclysmic events of September 13th 1999, the primary purpose of the ALPHA MOONBUGGY was the transportation of staff between MOONBASE ALPHA and Nuclear Disposal Area 2 for the monitoring and management of radiation levels.
The ALPHA MOONBUGGY can transport multiple passengers with the rear section able to carry specialized mission equipment. The ALPHA MOONBUGGY can be deployed onto the moon surface from an airlock or onto Earth-type planets from the cargo hold of an EAGLE TRANSPORTER.
We are delighted to bring to the collector a LIMITED EDITION STUDIO SCALE REPLICA of the 1/24 scale MOONBASE ALPHA MOONBUGGY. This STUDIO SCALE REPLICA is based on the original 1:24 scale studio model with the inclusion of an accurate astronaut figure complete with authentic decals and clear/tinted spacesuit visor and is a fantastic addition to our 44-inch STUDIO SCALE EAGLE TRANSPORTER COLLECTION.
Dedicated to the inspiration and memory of Gerry Anderson.

The first line is wrong. In the first episode, the Alphans travel to the disposal areas in Eagles, not by moonbuggy. Moonbase Alpha is on the near side of the Moon, the waste areas are on the far side, and it would take months to drive the distance in a moonbuggy. Oddly for an English company, the spelling of "specialized" is the American spelling, not the conventional British English. The moonbuggy is not particularly adapted for carrying cargo, even specialised loads.

Inside, the model is packed in expanded polystyrene. The astronaut, visor and antenna are packed separately from the buggy, wrapped in tissue paper.


It is 12 x 7.5 x 5 cm. The wheels are on axles and roll. The "Alpha Moonbase" wording on the shoulder insignia is legible, as is the astronaut's name on the helmet: "Sissons". The figure is moulded holding two control sticks (separately from the buggy). The copyright is written on the bottom of the buggy.


The model is not based on the original 1:24 scale model, or any of the SFX models used in the series. It is based on the full sized Amphicat prop vehicle used for live action, with Year 2 markings. As such, it is fair representation of the vehicle. The 1:24 scale is debatable (see discussion, but generally 1:28 is a better assumption for the Eagle, so the astronaut is too big).

The yellow colour is too bright and glossy. The seat is a little too narrow, and the seat back a little too wide (these vary between the different effects models and the full sized model). The exhaust (the silver cylinder back right) sticks out too much; it should be under the body.

The antenna (easily missed in the packaging) is too short and clear, instead of yellow.

The dashboard markings are based (loosely) on the full sized prop as it appeared at the Blackpool Space City exhibition from 1977. This used original markings, but was much more elaborate than ever appeared in the series.

The original effects models had two astronauts in the seat (on the 1:24 model, from the Revell Gemini kit). Later episodes had one astronaut, or in one episode, uniformed figures (Airfix 1:32 Footballers). Unlike the effects figures, the Sixteen 12 astronaut is accurate to the live action costumes, including helmet design, front and backpacks, and insignia on the shoulders. There is even a wire between the backpack and helmet, representing the air hose. One small inaccuracy: the gloves are grey, rather than white. The effects model figures are never holding the control sticks.

Below: original studio effects model, and the two Sixteen 12 scale replicas.

Copyright Martin Willey