While 21313 Ship in a Bottle may not appeal to everyone, it cannot be denied that its 962 pieces boast some amazing components. Brick Fanatics dug in to find out whether it would be worth picking up the latest IDEAS set just for the value of its parts.
‘Parts pack’ is a term used within the AFOL community for sets or lots purchased not because of the set itself, but rather for the pieces contained therein. For obvious reasons, these are mainly with the remit of builders rather than collectors. Parts packs must provide better value for the buyer than purchasing the components individually on sites such as Bricklink or Brick Owl. Even if they are slightly more expensive, the ease of grabbing a single set from a store shelf compared to slogging through ordering from multiple sellers is appealing. All of that got the Brick Fanatics team wondering whether 21313 Ship in a Bottle offered good value as a parts pack at £69.99 (or $69.99 in the US, €69.99 in Europe).
The most obvious place to start with this question is of course the four curved trans clear panels that make up the bottle’s front, where it reduces from the bottle’s diameter to the neck’s diameter. These components are known as Panel: 6 x 6 x 9 Corner Convex with Curved Top, or more succinctly as part number 6002. Incredibly, they have only appeared in four sets through the years, two of which were Dacta elements sets – so not available to the general public.
The most recent regular release of the panels was in Space Police III’s 5985 Space Police Central where they appeared not in useful Trans Clear, but Trans Dark Blue. One must go all the way back to 1992’s 6416 Poolside Paradise from the Paradisa line to find the first, and only, time these pieces were available in a regular retail set in Trans Clear. Considering that it has been over 20 years since this specific part was available, it would make sense for these pieces to be incredibly expensive, especially in quantity. We were shocked to find this was not the case – as of the publication date, the highest price on Bricklink was £3.62 ($5.11). Those in the market for four of them could pay as little as £1.27 ($1.27). Having checked that these prices were not being impacted by the release of 21313 Ship in a Bottle, we checked the last sales data for the last six months and found this price range to be very consistent.
Unfortunately, this does not bode well for 21313’s chances to make for a good value parts packs, as those four pieces looked likely to be the most lucrative. There are a few more pieces to check, though. Sticking with the bottle, the neck is made up of Cylinder Half 2 x 4 x 5 with 1 x 2 Cutout, or part number 85941, used twice, which comprises the clear portion of the bottle’s neck. While not prolific, the part has appeared in Trans Clear within eight different set including another, much cheaper model, available this year – 70920 Egghead Mech Food Fight. Not surprisingly, these pieces can be had for as little as GBP 0.20 ($0.23). While a host of other clear components are included in the set, none of them are selling for big bucks. The largest remaining clear element, Cylinder Quarter 4 x 4 x 6, part 30562, of which eight are included, clock in at only 39p ($0.55) each.
Before giving up hope, there seemed to be one final piece that might hold value. The ornate globes that decorate the set’s base are comprised of two separate pieces, each featuring half of the Earth’s geography. Only appearing in three previous sets, they do indeed command a high price relative to their size –£2.71 ($3.83) is currently the cheapest price at which two of each hemisphere can be obtained for a total of. That may not make them cheap parts, but they do not justify buying 21313 Ship in a Bottle for the retail price.
In summary, there is no standout piece or set of pieces that would drive the value of 21313 Ship in a Bottle so high that it would warrant picking up the set just for the pieces. If a builder set out to obtain all of its 962 pieces individually, the cost – especially with shipping – may approach £69.99, but no-one is likely to need that exact selection of pieces. It is more likely that a builder might want the globes, or the brown base pieces, or certain transparent components.
That said, the model does include some exclusive pieces, most notably the large printed compass, which will likely never again be released. Bricklink should come to the aid of any would be builders looking to re-create Jack Sparrow’s famous navigational tool in brick form, as I am sure sellers will stock it for years to come – as long as they ignore this article, and do not realise that 21313 Ship in a Bottle is not a great value parts pack.
21313 Ship in a Bottle has many fine attributes and there are a host of reasons why it belongs in your collection – the Brick Fanatics review awarded it just shy of four stars. So do not overlook this set necessarily, just don’t buy it only for the bricks.
The set used in this feature was provided by the LEGO Group.
When I was 3 years old my dad bought home 6659 TV Camera Crew as a gift — he had no idea what he had just unleashed. Three decades and no dark age later, I am still going strong. My love of LEGO led me to a career in Civil Engineering and I am now raising three budding LEGO lovers with my lovely wife who is, bless her, a huge supporter of my brick addiction. When not writing for Brick Fanatics or fulfilling my duties as the U.S. Editor of Blocks Magazine I enjoy collecting, MOCing, exhibiting, as well as running, climbing and home improvement.