Tag Archives: Teleporter

42062 Container Yard Review

Scrolling through the Brick Badger website can be a dangerous business, especially if you haven’t bought any new bricks for a while. It was a dull Sunday afternoon at TLCB Towers. The Elves had decided to find out which colour of 32009 Technic beam could do the most damage when beaten against a colleague’s head (medium lilac apparently). We were wandering the interweb and spotted the 42062 Container Yard was nearly 40% off on the famous riverine retailer.

The set contains 631 pieces, including a selection of beams in LEGO’s standard blue and orange colours, plus eight, grey 64782 flat panels. Not owning the 42056 Porsche 911, a source of orange Technic pieces is always welcome and the grey panels looked like they’d come in handy for making neat bases for MOCs.  There’s also one of the new worm gears and a good number of 18654 (15, plus spares). LEGO insists on calling these 1×1 beams, despite the pieces obvious inability to perform this engineering function. The most obvious new pieces in the set are the 18942 and 18940 Gear Rack & Housing. It will be interesting to see what use MOCers come up with for these parts. The set continues Technic’s trend of axles coming in a variety of colours: red, yellow and brown in this case.

Building the models is the usual, enjoyable adventure with Lego. There is a very nicely produced instruction book for both the main build and the B-model. The different colours are well differentiated and the days of dark grey and black getting confused are long gone. The parts come in numbered bags; building the tractor unit, the trailer and finally the telehandler. It took us a couple of hours of building and tea-drinking to complete the build. Builders at the youngest end of the suggested age range might find this quite a marathon of building and concentrating. Perhaps an advantage of this set is that you can build the lorry (and pause to play with it), build the trailer (and pause to play with it) and finish off with the telehandler. We certainly did!

As you would hope from a set with two different models, there are a good variety of mechanisms for young (and old!) engineers to build and play with in this set. Each vehicle has a different steering mechanism, plus the four-bar linkage that raises the arm on the telehandler, which also uses that new worm gear. Purists might be annoyed that the A model doesn’t use the gear rack to extend the telehandler’s arm. However, the B model does and the A model uses an interesting camming mechanism similar to the locking mechanism found in early repeater rifles. The container grabbing claw is another very neatly implemented version of a locking knuckle. For a set with a relatively small number of pieces there’s a lot here to inspire amateur engineers to experiment and build their own machines.

Sadly, the one thing that this otherwise excellent and exciting looking set doesn’t do so well on is its playability.  Compromises have had to been made to keep the set within a certain price range, which is understandable. Continue reading

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31041 Construction Vehicles – Set Review

31041

Come with us on a journey as we review the cheapest set that The Lego Car Blog has ever examined. We thought that we’d have a change from the big Technic sets that usually feature here. At £3.49 (30% off) from amazon will our purchase prove to be value for money? How will it rate for fun and playability? Will the Elves eat most of the 64 pieces before we can use them? Read on…

Packaged in LEGO’s usual bright and attractive box, 31041 scores over a large Technic set by only requiring a strong thumb to open its cardboard tab. None of that cutting or ripping sticky tabs here. Collectors will obviously want to cut the packaging open with a sharp knife in order to preserve its collectability, in a manner similar to this video.  A recurring theme of our reviews is the need for parts to come in numbered bags in order to reduce confusion & sorting and to help make building more pleasurable. Sadly the bag of parts is not numbered, possible as there is only one.  On the up side, a quick flick through the 32 page instruction book reveals that it contains instructions for all three models. As we’ve mentioned in other reviews, it would be great it if LEGO did this for their big, expensive Technic sets too. At the moment, builders having to traipse off to Lego.com and download PDF files.

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Moving on to the build, the headline model is rapidly built in 14 pages. The construction is the conventional, studs up type. There’s nice use of commonplace bricks, such as 1×1 round bricks and headlight bricks with 1×1 round plates to give the detailing. There’s also the neat use of a 1×2 tile, at the centre of the model, which will make it easier for children to take apart and re-build (which is what LEGO is supposed to be for!). The backhoe is a conventional bit of building too but the front bucket and its arms, are a good example of economical use of parts to good effect.

Builders young and old can learn quite a bit from this tiny model. As with short stories when compared with novels, micro-scale builds force modellers to consider each and every brick carefully. With model completed, you’re left with a spare 1×1 trans-orange round plate, a dark grey clip arm and three 1×1 light grey round plates to shovel around.

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In terms of functionality, this is a strong build, which rolls well across a floor or table. Sadly it suffers from the usual problem in LEGO vehicles of having poor Ackerman steering geometry. This is probably due to it having no steering but let’s skate over that one. Both buckets are firmly attached to the body of the tractor and have good ranges of movement. It’s a bit tricky to keep the grey plates on the front bucket, though this can be improved by swapping the corner pieces from the backhoe with on of the 1×2 edge pieces. Overall the model is fun and nice proportioned. It would be great if it had different diameter tyres, fore & aft, like a JCB but that would reduce the flexibility for making other models.

The other two vehicles are strong and fun to build and play with too. The dumper is a particularly nice little model. The way that the rear skip hinges is neatly and interestingly done.

This set is a great little parts pack, with most of the pieces in standard LEGO colours such as black, yellow and grey. There are four, yellow 1×2 curved bricks amongst other useful stuff. It’s also a brilliant, cheap bit of fun for the younger builder in your household: a great addition to that order for the 42055 that you’re buying for yourself (yes, we know, those big yellow rings are essential for your next MOC and it’s the only way to get hold of them). At this price, you could buy three 31041s and build one of each vehicle to use together in a diorama (obviously you wouldn’t be playing with them). Go on, make that investment!

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I Like Tequilatron, It Makes Me Happy!

Pico 01

Graphic designer, Pico van Grootveld is the design and editing brains behind a sci-fi collaboration called “Mining Frenzy“. We featured one the builds, Clayton Marchetti’s “Goliath” on our rather spacey Sunday. Pico’s contribution to the collaboration was a ship from his Tequilatron faction but he also built some other vehicles, which didn’t find space on the poster.

At the top of this post is his Magnaloader and below is the ‘Roidjumper Mech. Pour yourself a drink and then sit back and click this link to enjoy Pico’s work.

Pico 02

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