Toy Wizards would like to thank Bluefin Brands for providing us a sample copy of Flame Toys’ Bumblebee Furai Model Kit. To get your own copy, you can preorder it today for $49.99 from The Chosen Prime, or your favorite model kit retailer.
We covered this Flame Toys Bumblebee model kit in a Spontaneous Toy Review on Facebook, but we wanted to do it one more time for the purists that enjoy a good old written review.
This Transformers Bumblebee model kit from Flame Toys is the company’s fifth model kit and the first kit I’ve ever build that wasn’t from Bandai. And the differences were definitely noticeable.
The model kit took me about 3.5 hours to put together over the course of a weekend. Fully built, it measures about 6-7 inches tall, and the details are great. In order to make it pop, I decided to mark it up a little with some official Gundam markers.
While Flame Toys touts that the completed toy is fully articulate, I found that if I moved it, the toy would start falling apart. The difficulty says that this is a beginner kit, but some parts of it (like the jetpack and a piece on the leg, I believe) state that gluing is suggested. Because it is so easy to botch your model kit with glue (especially at the beginner level), something about this kit tells me that Flame Toys doctored and reprinted certain trays over and over again and just weren’t able to get the pieces to cleanly snap together without compromising other aspects of the kit. (This is unconfirmed, just a feeling I got while building).
The tiny snap-flaps around the hips are a complete waste of time for me. They are flimsy and don’t add the the completed aesthetic of the piece itself. Likewise, while this was an easy kit to put together with instructions that were clean and clear, there were this little ball and socket joints that jumped while I was trying to snap them together. Therefore, something that should have taken maybe 20 seconds to pop together ended up taking upwards of 5 minutes in certain cases.
As for the positives, the pieces were all nice and big. Stickers were easy to apply, though there was one piece where I took the stickers on and off and I couldn’t figure it out. For those of us acquainted with assembling Gundam, you know that some of those pieces are so tiny that you need tweezers. I chose to bust out the tweezers for parts of this per the instructions, so make sure you have those ready. This model kit came with really nice accessories as well, which is appreciated.
Overall, this was a fun kit. The $50 price point is a little high– I think $35-$40 would be more fair. This doesn’t move and some parts of it were clumsy and unnecessarily difficult compared to the instructions. It should have been a 2 hour model kit and because of the flimsy pieces, it pushed it up to the 3-3.5 hour mark.
I give the Flame Toys Transformers Bumblebee Furai Model kit 3.5 out of 5 stars, or a solid B-. I recommend it, it was fun, and I enjoyed it in spite of the small snafus.