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Delta’s Done Right: A look at FanSets Recent Offerings!

Delta’s Done Right: A look at FanSets Recent Offerings!

When it comes to collectables in the Star Trek world, one of the most reliable lines of merchandise were pins that fans could wear or display to replicate the brave Starfleet heroes on screen. For many fans, back in the day the go to place for these was Hollywood Pins’ collection as they churned out every Starfleet emblem from all era’s, rank pins and even a few commemorative pins including limited edition anniversary designs and Starships.

Several other contenders have came and gone providing the coveted icons of Star Trek fandom, including the Roddenberry Store and QMX. However, the latest supplier – FanSets – seem to be the most enthusiastic yet.

Starting out with character and commemorative pins, FanSets has become the forerunner for collectables in the market, not just for their Star Trek output, but other licenced properties including heavy hitters DC and Harry Potter franchises amongst others.

Blowing up during the first run of Discovery, FanSets seemed committed to catering to every fan’s favourite. Not just the Kirk’s and Picards, which are often a massive go-to for anyone who takes an action figure license, but focused on everyone and every thing.

Their enamel character pins of course have the Captains, the huge fan favourites that we’d watch week after week. They also have M’Ress, the often forgotten about addition from The Animated Series. They have Queen Arachnia, from that one episode of Voyager. They’ve got the Salt Vampire, Vina… and thats just the full body character pins.

Other additions have included logo’s for the La Sirena and Cerritos bar; Starship pins from the Reliant to Shenzhou; Props such as the Original Series tricorder and the Horga’hn; and more including specific episode and season commemorative pins as well as specially designed anniversary collectables.

Though the real excitement comes from a more recent addition to their line up: The Star Trek Delta Collection.

For over ten years now, the Starfleet Delta market had been dominated by QMX who produced pins for the 2009 Star Trek film, recoloured versions for Star Trek Beyond and more including Discovery and TNG era pins. However, after years of items being listed as “coming soon” we needed a new hero to step into the field.

Starting out with character and commemorative pins, FanSets has become the forerunner for collectables in the market, not just for their Star Trek output, but other licenced properties including heavy hitters DC and Harry Potter franchises amongst others.

Blowing up during the first run of Discovery, FanSets seemed committed to catering to every fan’s favourite. Not just the Kirk’s and Picards, which are often a massive go-to for anyone who takes an action figure license, but focused on everyone and every thing.

Their enamel character pins of course have the Captains, the huge fan favourites that we’d watch week after week. They also have M’Ress, the often forgotten about addition from The Animated Series. They have Queen Arachnia, from that one episode of Voyager. They’ve got the Salt Vampire, Vina… and thats just the full body character pins.

Other additions have included logo’s for the La Sirena and Cerritos bar; Starship pins from the Reliant to Shenzhou; Props such as the Original Series tricorder and the Horga’hn; and more including specific episode and season commemorative pins as well as specially designed anniversary collectables.

Though the real excitement comes from a more recent addition to their line up: The Star Trek Delta Collection.

For over ten years now, the Starfleet Delta market had been dominated by QMX who produced pins for the 2009 Star Trek film, recoloured versions for Star Trek Beyond and more including Discovery and TNG era pins. However, after years of items being listed as “coming soon” we needed a new hero to step into the field.

Every Star Trek fan, at some point in their life whether they’ll admit it or not, has wanted to slap on the badge of their era and just take that brief moment to feel like a Starfleet officer. Then of course, we shove it in a drawer or put it on display and try to remember we’re adults (sometimes).

But a lot of us are also ridiculous perfectionists. And over the years we have bought what can honestly be summed up as a bit crap. Even going back to Hollywood Pins in the 90’s, while they produced some good things such as the Future Imperfect pins and some pretty good rank sets from the movies, they also gave us a paper thin Generations uniform pin and a Monster Maroon pin that looked like it had melted in the sun.

QMX raised the bar with the sets they delivered on. So Fansets moving from enamel pins to one of the most coveted collectables in the Trek world was a big step. And I’ll admit, I was hesitant to jump on board. But thankfully, they delivered!

FanSets Delivery (left) & Personal Display (right)

While the line is only just beginning, what they have on offer so far has impressed a cynical and picky fan like me. The best in their Delta’s set, for me, is their 2399 era Starfleet pin from Picard.

The pin comes in two layers, with the backing in the accurate gun metal grey with a shiny silver hollow delta laid on top. In terms of accuracy, it’s spot on perfect and manages to look better in person than it does on the show. For a company that mostly produces colourfully painted enamel pins, the quality and construction are of a really high standard.

Available in both traditional two-post pin and magnet form, it’s marketed as a collectable and not a prop replica or cosplay piece. Presumably due to license restrictions. However, since I don’t work for Fansets I’d recommend the magnetic pin for anyone looking to spice up their costumes.

Another that impressed from their range was the pin from Lower Decks. Which they should be credited for in bringing to life. In the animated series, the crew’s pin is really just a 2D shape. FanSets, with approval from CBS, have taken that 2D shape and given it some extra dimension, which has transformed what could have been a fairly dull piece into something that takes that simplistic design and transforms it into something more appealing to the eye.

Some products in the Delta line, so far, don’t quite match the appeal of competitors. The Discovery Command pin for example doesn’t have the texture details of the QMX version, and the pin introduced in Generations – while coming with a matte finish more closely resembling the painted plastic seen in screen – does fall into the trap of the overly-wide gap in the backplate.

However, despite one or two stumbles, whats come from FanSets Delta range so far has been excellent. The matte textures on both the Generations and Picard pins have been applied to the All Good Things version, offering the most accurate depiction of the alternate future design so far. And with their plans to expand to other era’s, the products will only improve over time.

FanSets continues to add to their collection. Both in their character pins, and in their delta’s. With their work so far, it’s quite exciting to see where their Deltas line itself will go. They’ve already teased some interesting products, such as 3D models of the 32nd Century pins from Discovery’s third season. However, most of us should be sitting on edge over one promise they’ve made…. The TWOK era pins.

Whether an officially licensed product, made from the original company or independently created, the TWOK pins have never been made to a standard close enough to resemble what we’ve seen on screen.

With FanSets working on creating the pins, with Anovos’ John Cooley, as well as their ability to craft matte-metallics in comparison to Hollywood Pins and QMX’s extreme shiny’s, when FanSets uses their catchphrase #DeltasDoneRight – I not only hope they can live up to that, I believe them!

Every Friday we’ll be looking at Trek Merch past and present with the occasional wider Sci Fi world under review. Next week we’ll (hopefully!) be reviewing Anovos’ output. As always, we’ll have more in Comms which is free to all SFCQ2 members. Find out more or enlist today!

VADM Tyler, DoFC
Creator of things, writer of words, caffeine addict. Director of Communications for Starfleet Command Quadrant 2.

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