MOC Explorien Satellite Cruiser
The following photos are of a MOC (My Own Creation) LEGO Model of an alternate version of the 6973 Deep Freeze Defender. In my version, the ship is piloted by the Exploriens, a different theme of LEGO Space from around the same era. The design is a mixture of the original along with the best features like the split wing design of the 6982 Explorien Starship. Below I am featuring images of the completed model, along with my insights and observations about my favorite parts of the Explorien Satellite Cruiser.
The Explorien Satellite Cruiser features two pods similar to the front half of the 6938 Scorpion Detector, mixed with the ski bottoms of the Deep Freeze Defender’s detachable sled ships. The Satellite is featured prominently on the middle section of the vehicle.
Just like the set which inspired this, the pods can be detached and one pod can pilot the entire ship, along with a secondary ship which is docked on the middle platform section.
The Mini-Explorer Pod has launched from the circular launch pad (which is the base of the 6815 Hovertron Set). This Pod can attach to drive the Explorien Satellite Cruiser. The dark blue glass comes from the 1728 Crystal Crawler, an Aquanaut kit in the Aquazone theme. This is one example of where I used a more modern part or a part from another theme to accent the Exploriens parts in this kit. The pod base comes from the 6109 Sea Creeper, from the Stingray faction of the Aquazone theme. The minifig inside features an Aquazone style helmet in grey as well. The grey color was a secondary color in Exploriens theme and I added in more grey and neon green accents than the original kits might have. LEGO released more varieties of transparent pieces and trim pieces that did not exist at the time the 6973 Deep Freeze Defender was designed.
Watch as the front section spreads its wings to fly away, leaving the Mobile Exploration Lab behind to study the cosmos. The Lab can beam it’s findings to the ship via the blue and green transmitter dish.
The Mobile Exploration Lab contains special communications and lab equipment for processing the fossils that the Exploriens are searching for. The Mini-Explorer pod attaches to the middle section to become a Battle Cruiser armed with 2 MAGNO Missiles.
The rear detachable section is the Mobile Exploration Lab. The pods from the front can attach to this section as well.
Inside the Mobile Exploration Lab, a crew member is decoding the fossil samples with red and blue screens. Check out the folding doors with the inverted boosters, a play function from the original 6973 Deep Freeze Defender. Normally, there would be a small ship stored back here, but I felt like putting interesting science gear back here.
To this day, I have not purchased the 6982 Explorien Starship, but I loved the photos I saw of the completed kit with the splitting wing feature. I wanted to replicate that function in My Own Creation, the Explorien Satellite Cruiser. I found a set of instructions for the 6982 Explorien Starship to research how the wing splitting function worked. From there, I created a custom middle section that would fit the two pods and rear section pegs to keep the functionality of the 6973 Deep Freeze Defender kit. The original kit featured a small scout ship in the rear garage bay and one missile in the middle section. I added the Mini Explorer Landing Pad to this section after I realized I couldn’t fit the ship in the rear section of the ship. I added warp drive engines to the top wings and added an additional missile for symmetry’s sake. To explore the cosmos effectively, the Exploriens feel the need to respond to any threat with overwhelming force.
I hate to see it go, but I love to watch it fly away. The rear wings and peg holes are the only pieces that are in the same place in both the MOC Explorien Satellite Cruiser and the original 6973 Deep Freeze Defender. The middle section contains the wing splitting function from the 6982 Explorien Starship that I reverse engineered to fit into My Own Creation, the Explorien Satellite Cruiser. The front section is much wider because my pods are wider than the ski pods on the original kit. Even though my parts are slightly heavier, the three sections of the kit connect together in the same method as the 6973 Deep Freeze Defender.
A view of the complete ship flying away. There’s so much dark blue and neon green trim and I love it. The pieces used in this kit were farmed from at least 6 different Explorien kits that I had as a child, as well as more than a few airplanes. The sloped blue 1×1 dark blue ramps are some of my favorite modern LEGO pieces. The flat 2×1 neon green grate pieces are from the a little later in the same era, but from a different theme. The gray trim near the back of the ship is a modern/combo piece that is LEGO and Technic. Black was a third accent color from the Explorien theme and I was happy to be able to include the black mesh sections in the middle wing section.
In my imagination, the Explorien Satellite Cruiser is a ship with a crew of elite Explorien astronauts who are sent on dangerous missions to open new relations for the Explorien race. They search the cosmos, making contact with the other LEGO Space themes while searching for magnetic fossils and decoding red and blue images. The Explorien kits offered great play functions for a LEGO kit from the mid 90’s. The kits have only gotten more and more specialized, even moving into branded space content (STAR WARS). The pieces today can create a much sleeker looking ship, however, I believe that the classic LEGO Space parts have much more character and utility value.
Thanks for reading,