Disney Man-in-Space Rocket Ship (1955)
About the Design
In 1955, Walt Disney's three-part TV series, "Man in Space," "Man and the Moon" and "Mars and Beyond" gave Americans what was advertised as an "authentic" look at the potential of manned space flight. Produced by Mr. Disney and German rocket pioneer Dr. Werner von Braun -- who three years earlier had fired America's imaginations with his speculative manned spaceflight series in Collier's magazine -- the "Disneyland" trilogy offered up several visually stunning vehicle designs, including this classic winged booster with its delta-winged return rocket. (This design was subsequently "borrowed" by Lindberg Line when it produced its own "Transport Rocket" in 1958.) Of course, within a decade, real NASA spacecraft would make this style of winged "rocket ship" look as dated as anything out of "Flash Gordon."
About the Kit
The "Man in Space Ship" was released twice in the late 1950s, then vanished, seemingly forever. Then, to the delight of Fantastic Plastic builders everywhere, it was resurrected by Glencoe Models -- with significant retooling -- in 1993 as the "3-Stage Ferry Rocket."
This is a copy of the Glencoe reissue.
Note: Although its appearance in the Disney "Man In Space" TV series should technically classify this as a "Pop Culture" design, that it was based on rigid scientific principals and appeared throughout the period's speculative literature causes it to be listed in this "Concept Spacecraft" section.