StarBird Space Avenger

In the 70’s, a lot of toy companies were incorporating electronics into their toys. While I still maintain that Rom the Space Knight is the coolest of the electronic 70’s toys, the Starbird and it’s variations are pretty close. All the Starbird toys have a few things in common; press a button and their front lasers light up and fire, tilt the ship up or down and it makes engine sounds that raise or lower in pitch, removable front assemblies, wing fighters and engine parts. These ships are often missing parts, most commonly a little gun that sits in the ball turret at the back.

There are two main modesl of Starbird, the Electronic Starbird and the Star Bird Space Avenger which was also boxed as the StarBird Avenger. Depending on the model, there are diferent sticker sets. The lasers on the Avenger’s nose are set closer together, the canopy plastic is much darker. The Avenger was a second release of the Starbird and included updated electronics that could both send and receive infrared signals. The Avenger model comes with a “target” to shoot at to test your skill with the infrared lasers.

A third vessel, the Starbird Intruder, was also made but is much harder to find. It is basically the front assembly of a Starbird with wings done up in black. It makes the same laser and engine sounds and includes the advanced infrared electronics as the Avenger. In fact, the Avenger and Intruder can have battles, knocking out the opponents ship with infrared beams like lasertag. A disabled ship’s engine will knock out briefly when hit.

Milton Bradley made a playset to go along with the Starbird line, the Command Base. It is a large cardboard station with plastic accessories like radar dishes, laser guns, a working crane, little vehicles and space men.


Electronic Starbird

Star Bird Space Avenger

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Starbird front view

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Starbird rear view

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Starbird Command Base

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Loose Command Base

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  Starbird Intruder Click here for a larger picture

German Star Bird Supervogel

40 thoughts on “StarBird Space Avenger”

  1. Starbird rules! I got my S-Bird as a gift when I was a teen, and loved it! It is one of my top toys ever. I broke mine of course, and 20 years later,got one off E-Bay. I still fire her up when I can. Great laser blasts and the acceleration sound are some of the best memories I have. Thanks for a great website!

  2. Starbirds completely rocked. MIne got a lot of play time. I think I still have it somewhere. It was in good condition except for it lost a few decals.

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  5. I was looking on ebay to find out what an Electronic Starbird is worth but I didn’t see any. I was fixing to put mine on ebay when I found your site.

    It is missing one of the thrusters on the back & the gun is missing, it also has a burn mark on the engine exhaust area where I put a lighter up to it to see if it would make a flame come out. Yeah a 9 or 10 year old with a lighter

    doesn’t sound good does it. Anyway all the electronics & lights still work good. any ideas thanks Howard h-n-h@att.net

  6. I remember last seeing one of these hanging in a comic book shop in Syracuse, NY in the early 90s. The owner had taken it and painted it gun metal grey aand highlighted certain areas blood red. I think he painted large black wings on the bottom of it. It looked awesome.

    I had one when I was a kid, which is how I stumbled across this site when I did a search on eBay. Just wanted to see if anyone even remembered this toy. And when I remembered the name and did a search, I found this site. Thanks for helping me remember my childhood.

  7. Thank goodness for mothers who saved things. My mom just sent me 2 Milton Bradley Electronic Starbirds that I had when I was a kid. Just like anyone, both are missing the gun. But for the mostpart, there mostly all there. I just handed them over to my five year old boy and he’s just as excited as I was when I got mine. Oh yeah, I’m forty now and the sound just takes me back. Thanks for the site.

  8. My brother used to have ‘starbird’ , think around about same time as ‘big track’ came out! I used to play all the time when he wasnt around. Would love another one!

  9. I still have the intruder in beautiful shape, that thing is crazy cool.

    I used to have the star bird, but that toy was completly wrecked.

    ( guess the intruder won the fight)

  10. Mom and Dad still have all of our toys from when we were kids and they are slowly starting to migrate the 2 hours south to my house. My 6 year old boy spent spring break at my parents and when I went to pick him up we went to the attic with the intention of finding my brothers Xwing fighter (remember the cool old ones that had the light on the nose like a lazer). Anyhow, he got that and I got the intruder(I was always bummed My figure wouldn’t fit in the ship). I pulled it down out of the attic and found a battery for it and it still works. The entire ship is in very good shape although missing one of the wings/fighters & The gun. I’m sure it’s around somewhere, just need to find it. I remember taking it to school in about 2nd grade….back when lazers and toy guns were just toys. Memories. Thanks to whoever took the time to put this page up and letting us chime in!

    Randy in Des Moines, IA.

  11. Great article! I had the original StarBird and the Command Center when they came out and thought they were the coolest thing – especially the variable pitch engine sound. I lost mine in the typical “Mom Purge” of toys “I grew out of” and it was likely sold in a garage sale along with many Star Wars, Battlestar Gallactica, and Buck Rogers toys. If we knew then what we know now…

  12. Ok, so I’ve posted this somewhere else too, but I thought it belonged here too. If you have TSR’s (quite excellent) pocket game Revolt on Antares, check out the graphic on the Air Jets counter… they are StarBird ripoffs!

    I never had one of these wicked-cool babies, but somebody at school did, and I once got to fly on of the little detatchable wing ships. I always thought that was a line of BS, but I guess they really were supposed to be ships. So I guess that wasn’t quite as lame as I thought it was (not that I refused).

  13. Does anyone remember if their was a black wing like nemisis to the starbird . I remember having the starbird and the playset and my step brother having the starbird intruder and another black wing evil version also with lights and sound. The vehicle was also made by MB and hade little wiglets that could come of and be used as fighters i just cannot remember the name of it. Does anyone remember the name of the starbirds nemisis

  14. hey guys n gals!! does any one know where to get the gun part or a reproduction of it???

    i need that part!!!!

    still have the one i had as a kid and it still looks n sounds great!!

    atill have the box inserts and instructions as well!!!

    in hella great shape for being ancient!!!!

    hell I’m 40 and still play all my old stuff ive had or re bought

    over the years!! also love my mega bugs!! got em all!!

  15. I LOVED MINE! I got one of the ships as a BD gift from my parents when I turned 9 and I remember it like it was yesterday. It’s been almost 30 years ago now and I still have the nose part that has the electronics in it. Doesn’t work anymore and I have taken it apart to try to repair, but I have had no luck. I think I will just hunt a nice one down and buy it. Thanks for this site so I could take a stroll down memory lane again!

  16. i have star bird space avenger in orignal box. all the pieces are present. i.e the cardboard landing pad. the roller gun on the back. still in perfect working condition. looking to sell to good home. anyone interested make me a offer

  17. Hello Friends Star bird!!!

    I have gun part for your collection, i’m selling also a star bird intruder complete, an avenger complete, a star bird station and a normal star bird, they are all working well!!

    Let me know if you want to change part or sell o buy, i m always loocking for missing parts.

    Very nice site

  18. Hello,

    When I was 10 years old I got a Star Bird for Christmas. It soon became my most beloved toy of my childhood. My parents had pictures in the photo album of me playing with it. I found myself later in life trying to remember the name of it. I forgot what it was called. Yesterday, I stumbled across one on the internet. The wave of emotion of seeing and remembering that toy rolled over me like nothing I’ve felt before. I thought for a moment that I was gonna cry. I gotta get one.

  19. I remember waking up one Christmas morning and getting one of these, and yes I seemed to have lost the gun within a few days. I loved the smell of that plastic though, the awesome sounds. I always wanted a Star Wars Y-Wing fighter, but this was the next best thing (and I dearly miss it)

  20. I have the PCB (printed circuit board) from my Star Bird. It is all that survives after these many decades. I don’t know why I kept it all these years, but I still have it. I’m sure it would work if connected to batteries and a speaker. I love the metal ball on tracks that controlled the pitch up and down!

    Someday when I have a little extra money, I WILL have another Star Bird!

  21. Love the site, just to make you all a bit jealous, just picked up a boxed Star Bird Space Intruder from a local charity shop for … wait for it a whopping £1.30p, its now pride of place next to my Big Trak and Action Men

  22. I had the second version of the starbird in year 4. (Early 80s.) This was the one that DID not haver the removable nose, or the wing fighters.
    It shot little missiles, had the same engine sounds and lasers.

    It died after many years, but I got a replacement on Ebay, along with oine of the original versions. (Just need the turret gun, like everyone else does.)

    The thing is, I have NEVER seen the second version mentioned anywere.

  23. Hello! I’m the webmaster for Suncoast Diecasters. At our March meeting I sold my German-edition Starbird to another clubmember. Outside of auction sites, this page of yours is the only one with any info on Starbird. I’d like to have permission to link to this page when I post the next update.

    1. Yeah, of course feel free to link! BTW, love your site. Hadn’t run across it before. I’m not deep into die cast toys, but there are a few I like, especially the Zylmex stuff like the Thunderbirds knock offs.

  24. Hi
    I have a bandai grey starboard. It’s the one with the retractable landing gear
    It has all of the missiles, the electronics work.
    It is missing the orange plastic engine cover art the rear.
    Does anyone know what these are worth before I stick it on eBay.
    Only issue is that shipping will be expensive from new Zealand
    Cookie@bluemonsta.com

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Classic toys and ephemera from the 70s