It still seems to me like there was more intention behind Star Trek's choice than Lost in Space's. The former made (in my view, clever) changes to a story to justify a cost-saving measure; the latter made a cost-saving measure with no regard to the story.
I do give Star Trek
points for approaching the problem artistically and making the best out of the situation, that, if not a bad situation per se, was certainly not what was originally envisioned. However, even if it represented the best that could have been done, to me it still came off as obviously contrived, as a flimsy conceit to justify what they had to work with.
Was it better than having a true western episode, to go alongside the Nazi and the gangster episodes? Impossible to know, really; the two second season episodes there certainly were cheesy, albeit entertaining in their own ways.
However, with respect to the episode that was delivered, the thinness of the premise was showing, as were the cutbacks. "Spectre" is the first third season episode in production order, and in it the writing is already on the wall that the show was in trouble. It's always been hard for me to get past that.