I am Diecast scale model collector and a toy enthusiast, I like motorcycle more than cars and SUVs and that’s the reason why I get so excited when I see a bike model in a toy stores display. I mostly collect 1:12 scale bike and very few 1:18 bikes which go with my 1:18 car models. This here is a Build kit by Sluban like the Lego Technic kits but with far smaller footprint and far less pieces! This kit called “M38 – B0958” or Motorbike looks more like a BMW naked bike, the reason why I got this in first place… If this kind of kits impress me than I will hit for the big brute Lego BMW M 1000 RR.
I picked this Sluban M38 kit from Firstcry and paid INR.727/- though the original MRP is INR.999/- I paid a less price by a coupon and some rewards point. The product came in mint condition and I was happy as I dint expect this level of protection from FC. This kit is made in India so the “Make in India” logo on the side with some import and manufacturer details. And also some statutory warnings etc.
The front of the box has this beautiful profile shot and this photo sold me this kit to me. This box is fairly so I was little skeptical of the size… I was expecting a generic scale of either 1:12 or 1:18 but we will only after building it as there is no mentioning of it either. You will have to work with 197 pieces and is recommended for 8 years and above.
The other side of the box has some more product images with the dimension of the final build, which puts in between 1:14 and 1:16 scale. For me every angle somehow I feel like its a BMW because of it color scheme and boxer twin engine configuration but I am sure Sluban don’t have a licence to build BMW models so no logo or bimmer branding anywhere.
This Sluban M38 Motorcycle kit comes with 197 pieces split into 3 plastic bag and one for the brake discs (in a ziplock bag) and one decal set. Unlike lego these three bags are not numbered but I am sure they are classified according to the build steps mentioned in the instruction manual.
The instruction manual is present as well other this would be a nightmare! The instruction manual seems quite detailed and has 37 steps with pictorial representation for all steps and it is in color making the build process far simpler.
Instead of opening one bag at a time I opened all of them in one shot… as the instruction manual dint say anything on the bag markings. The quality of the pieces are good and not that flimsy as I initially expected taking into consideration the price and market it targets. Most pieces are firm plastic and the tires are made of rubber.
Building is relatively simple if you figure out a way to read the instructions in the provided manual. Just like any build… this motorbike don’t look like anything closer to bike! At this point, I kind of feel Sluban would have made the build simpler as I have to put three 3×2 blocks to get something bigger… I don’t see any point in it, maybe this is how they came to 197 pieces.
Once the frame is complete, the coloured panels starts going in they take shape of the bike. This is the point when I stared losing interest as I started seeing loose joints, exposed panels and non blending lines. Then there are these exposed frame pieces that look nothing like part of frame at all.
I kind of like the rear swing arm with a rubber tires, but I feel the tire size to be a bit smaller. Technically speaking most motorbike have fatter rear wheels and slimmer front wheels but here both the wheels are of same size making it less real. This also makes this look more like a toy than a serious kit for matured users.
The physical build is complete and I don’t like it much! Me being a scale model collector find this build tricky but the end result seems rather impressive and looks like a toy! There are few point that frustrated me to the core and a 8-9 year old builder would have given up right there…
First the exhaust pipe, which is a soft bendable pipe we need to bend to shape. Inserting it into one of the pegs was task even for an adult like me with special tools and experience customising toys. The other one is the front fork which don’t stay in one place and changes rake even if you try to move it a little. And finally like most kit builds, putting the decals a challenge and that too on such a small model.
I did mess up the decal part and I tried correcting it… After few attempts I gave up the correcting procedure and left it as is, which kind of looks unique. I will anyways give one more shot at putting the stickers, that’s why I left the right side plain.
This is not at all a bad kit model… but a decent one! If viewed from certain angles (profile especially) this is a cool model… If I would have done the decals good, this is would look sleeker by 10 times or more.
This being a kit, we cannot expect much details if viewed from front or front 3/4 angles. The headlamp has some details that puts some emphasis on to the front side. The details on the front fork also shows up better in this angle.
As mentioned earlier, both front and rear wheels are of same size and that is visible in this angle. There are some fine details in this motorcycle and the engine casing gets most focus. There are connectors, multi colours pieces and even some misfits pieces that just adds dimension.
This motorcycle kit comes with a paddock stand and that is the easiest build of this project! This motorbike don’t get a kick stand instead it gets a paddock style stand, which keep the bike stable. The paddock stand also looks good if viewed from sides but not a big fan of it from this rear view. This rear view also shows off the exposed frame work I talked about!
For scale comparison, I put it next to my trusty old 1:18 Triumph Speed Triple by Maisto and it look too big confirming my theory and when pegged next to 1:12 Ducati Monster by Newray, it looks small. So it should be between 1:12 and 1:18 and my best guess is it should be in 1:15 mark.
This Sluban M38 Motobike is decent kit but its not the one for me as I am a perfectionist and kits are nowhere close to perfection. Kit are about building experience and not about the end results… Even if I would have picked a 25k Lego Technic BMW M 100 RR I would have had more or less the same verdict. So I conclude by saying good work Sluban but please work on your user experience and make your instruction manual better. Till next time… Ciao.