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Clone Brands Train discussions

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Enlighten Trains Suck!

The one good thing I see about Enlighten is that the inside of their cars is kind of cool. On the 624 wagon the window stickers look horrible!

:pir-sad:

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Enlighten Trains Suck!

The one good thing I see about Enlighten is that the inside of their cars is kind of cool. On the 624 wagon the window stickers look horrible!

:pir-sad:

Oh, how true.....those window stickers totally blow chunks - too childish....yeah, it's a kids toy, but goodness they should show some class. Parts of their trains are great...in design and some detailing but plastic quality....look at the yellow parts and those I guess silver grey bricks - swelling patterns in the plastic bricks ! :hmpf:

But the above trains really copies of Lego ones ?

Keep on track ! :grin:

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Of course, everybody is entitled to his or her opinion.

Absolutely true! :thumbup:

If anyone wants me to "review" the other enlighten train stuff, I have almost all of them (except the Xmas clone).

leave a post here on this thread, and I'll do it.

I'd love to read more about these sets. :thumbup::thumbup::thumbup:

Now he we go again:

For me personally, there is no "enemy", there is no crime situation here. Most of TLCs patents touched on here simply ran out. Stickers or not, EN is just boldly copying LEGO bricks. 30 years is a long time though. So a company should be able to come up with something creative to survive that protected time. And TLC does. And they should continue to do so: Being creative. They need to come up with new models, new ideas, new themes, new techniques. That's one way to keep up the attention (see the Maersk train frenzy; but this is a minor community only, train heads, AFOLs, folks you like you and me, who want to model as much reality into their trains as possible - not the original LEGO idea though!). But see also PF, etc. TLC needs to be ahead. This is the way to survive. Sitting in leather chairs, smoking cigars and building on patents is NOT.

Every other company in the world faces this situation. Just because we love TLC that much: They need to be creative. And be top notch in every regard. They want 120 Euro for the Maersk train, which translates to a couple of plastic bricks worth virtually nothing from the material point of view. OK: The molds, and the stickers. But it is THE IDEA that makes us buying their stuff. AND: Superb quality. There should be no messing around with colors (now that su**ed s**t! Bley, all sorts of shades of red, etc. etc., and NOT letting people know up front: Arrogance? Well "competition" is a stone-old way of improving things). BTW: TLC folks apparently are living a good life that we are paying for.

With respect to the review:

I'd like to hear some comments on the quality of the bricks. How do EN bricks, obviously not made of ABS, compare to TLCs ABS bricks? I see LARGE gaps between the EN bricks, which would drive me crazy. How do EN bricks "stick"?

And I'd like to hear some comments on costs. How much are we willing to pay for a church (TLCs own way of representing themselves, the Maersk-train-show is on the edge, if you'd ask me). How much (and way more important) on QUALITY? How much are people, not to be so lucky having a good paying job, willing to spend for toys for their children?

I guess this is a very, very diverse discussion. If we blame one or another we should first define the scope and then nail whatever we want to nail.

Summary:

Brickimaid: I would really like to see a review. Regardless of content. Any further information will help me in deciding where to go. Should EN come up with powered 9V tracks though, sorry , I'll definitely buy tons of that stuff, without hesitation.

Best regards,

Thorsten

Edited by Toastie

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Ok, I have the Enlighten Union Pacific locomotive. The design is not a copy of the Lego BNSF. The main body is 5 studs wide using jumper plates for starters. Yes some of the Enlighten sets are bootleg copies but some of them are original designs. The parts are actually ABS too, with the clutch power being equal to or better than Lego in most cases. Some 1x1 elements suffer from being slightly loose, but you get some extras anyway. The quality is almost (99%) the same as the new lower quality non-standard Lego products like the collectible mini-figures. (This is for the train sets only. Older sets like the Pirates line may differ, beware) The biggest advantage the Enlighten sets have is all of the decorated elements are printed, there are no stickers at all. In this one regard the sets blow Lego completely out of the water. The only major disadvantage of the Enlighten quality is some parts have a sharp injection point leftover in the middle of one of the studs. (your thumb gets sore after hitting a few of those if you are not watching for them.) If they could fix that one problem (and stop making some of their sets bootleg copies) they would be the best clone brand in existence.

Edited by Lord Insanity

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*sigh*

As Toastie says - here we go again... :grin:

But seriously, since this topic has been discussed on multiple occasions before, I'll refrain from further comments and just refer you to a Brickshelf gallery featuring quite a few photos of these Enlighten trains, along with very specific info on the rails for those as well: this is it.

As I said earlier, multiple reviews of Enlighten sets can be found here on Eurobricks. Furthermore, I'm pretty sure that there was a guy who posted a bunch of pics of Enlighten trains on flickr and did detailed reviews on those, but I can't seem to find his photostream at the moment. In any case, if anyone is that interested, you should consider digging through flickr, his reviews were most worthwhile and featured a detailed description of everything that's good or bad about the models of this rip-off brand.

I hope this sums up the story regarding reviews and further info on such sets.

P.S.: And a little something for Toastie - check out this thread mate, you might find it rather intriguing :wink:

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I'd like to hear some comments on the quality of the bricks. How do EN bricks, obviously not made of ABS, compare to TLCs ABS bricks? I see LARGE gaps between the EN bricks, which would drive me crazy. How do EN bricks "stick"?

Last year I bought one of their original design pirate ships and the quality of the bricks is awful, they look bad, the black looks dirty, and their clutch power is feeble, pieces would randomly fall off and some pieces never stuck at all. The minifigs build quality is awful, loose arms, headgear that's almost impossible to get on...

I couldn't get rid of it quickly enough, it's just frustrating to both build and display.

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Oh, how true.....those window stickers totally blow chunks - too childish....yeah, it's a kids toy, but goodness they should show some class. Parts of their trains are great...in design and some detailing but plastic quality....look at the yellow parts and those I guess silver grey bricks - swelling patterns in the plastic bricks ! :hmpf:

But the above trains really copies of Lego ones ?

Keep on track ! :grin:

You are most definately right about it being childish and blowing many chunks!

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I personally could not handle the cheap bricks mixing with my lego bricks. it would be like a bad illness.

how are the wheels? thats the only thing i could see, because the used prices are a joke for wheels and couplers!

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I personally could not handle the cheap bricks mixing with my lego bricks. it would be like a bad illness.

how are the wheels? thats the only thing i could see, because the used prices are a joke for wheels and couplers!

The wheels were OK, but still they didn't couple very well

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I have to say, and this may not be the best thread for this subject because there are several involving MegaBlocks, Cobi, and other brands.

It's pretty much accepted facts that these are cheap imitations, it's true... I won't argue with those who continue to tout the quality of LEGO over other brands.

Many of these companies produce sets that are identical (or nearly so) to LEGO sets. That's also true. Enlighten certainly does this.

But I'm getting a little tired of the comments about other companies ripping off LEGO parts... Ole Kirk Christensen "stole" the design from Kiddicraft, eventually buying the rights.

I know TLG is everybody's favorite company - mine, too; they certainly make the best quality bricks (at this time, IMO), but I'm not going to belittle these other companies for wanting to get in on the market. MB makes Halo; if you want Halo, you buy MB. Enlighten seems like now it's the only company making compatible curved track - and the only one making brown track, which seems like a much better color than gray... (we'll see what ME comes up with, but it doesn't look like directly compatible RC track).

So, sorry, I'm venting a bit that it's annoying to see people complaining about "stolen" designs for parts and sets when Kiddicraft was the original "victim" at the hands of Ole Kirk Christensen, who apparently saw the design of Kiddicraft the very year he bought an injection mold.

Now back onto this topic - belittle Enlighten all you want, if I can find "track packs," I'll be inclined to buy them, even if just for shelf displays. I'm not inclined to buy sets with bricks that I don't think will stay together well, so while some of the sets look interesting, I don't feel it's worth it yet, but I find it hard to believe that tracks would have the same problem... they are held together differently, and don't need the tight tolerances that bricks need to clutch.

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I have to say, and this may not be the best thread for this subject because there are several involving MegaBlocks, Cobi, and other brands.

...

I fully agree with what you have - very nicely :thumbup: - phrased in your post.

Best regards,

Thorsten

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It would be up to 'The Brickster' if he moves this out down to the Community forum where 'Peppermint_M' is the queen of the clone brands.....but I not sure if she is up with trains or not.

I wonder if Enlighten :devil: will copy the more recent designs of our beloved TLC ! :wink:

Brick On......with the real deal ! :grin:

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It would be up to 'The Brickster' if he moves this out down to the Community forum where 'Peppermint_M' is the queen of the clone brands.....but I not sure if she is up with trains or not.

I wonder if Enlighten :devil: will copy the more recent designs of our beloved TLC ! :wink:

Brick On......with the real deal ! :grin:

Hi LT,

oh man you are so right, but as far as I am concerned this is not about copying so much (at least for me) but about phasing out 9V track, curves, etc. So when The Original has seized to exist and a clone brand continues to make what I desperately want (even if crappy), although we all wanted it from The Original, hmmm, I may want to rethink ...

So I suggest to not move this topic, let us just deal with it, I love the discussion!

All the best,

Thorsten

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Yeah, I certainly didn't mean to drive this off topic, but I see it somewhat like Toastie... yes, Enlighten ripped off LEGO's design, but they ripped off sets you can't buy first hand anymore.

They are filling a demand, even if we wished TLG would do it instead.

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While I personally wouldn't buy any of their actual bricks or sets, I do like the idea of taking inspiration from Enlighten's instructions. Unfortunately, their unique models aren't interesting enough to me, for the most part. I could see buying the track, however, perhaps as filler on hidden areas of a layout, or for modeling locales that would call for different color rails.

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While I personally wouldn't buy any of their actual bricks or sets, I do like the idea of taking inspiration from Enlighten's instructions.

Why take inspiration from Enlighten's instructons when you can just download the instructions for the original LEGO Santa Fe Super Chief, BNSF etc. for free and refer to those instead.....?

D.

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Hi all,

When I first started getting into Lego trains, I decided to do some homework first about prices and availability. That is when I came across Enlighten among many other brands of bricks. I decided to purchase the Frisco Fe and a box of track 8x curves & 8x straight. At the same time I acquired (with the help of my lovely wife) an old 9v set that had extra track, so the Enlighten brown track now needed to be able to conduct if I'm going to use it with the Lego stuff. More research was done on this subject with the outcome of using copper foil already cut to the right width (anyone wanting to know is 7/32IN). That gives enough equal cover top and both sides so it doesn't look funny. It takes a lot of time and patience to get it right, more so on the curves than the straights but the outcome was great as you'll see soon.

I am in the process of uploading youtube video's of my Frisco Fe and the track in a test run handled by my 2 1/2 year old son. (he did a great job for his age). I'll add the link/s here so people can see the outcome. Ok 4/5 done and here's the link to the first,

I will say that the track is awesome, it fits perfectly to Lego track and you don't really mind the brown colour. The track joins are exactly the same as Lego's but my son did break off one of the little half circle clip bits that the whole circle of the other track fits into (if you understand that). But in the tracks defence having a 2 1/2 yo pulling it apart and together again can do that lol.

I'll do a review of the Engine another time.

My mum always said don't knock it till you've tried it. Normally that was for the cooking but I think it can mean anything.

Edit: One thing I will add, after adding the copper foil to the tracks it made the engine seem to run smoother and quieter than lego track.

Edited by Trainee

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Why take inspiration from Enlighten's instructons when you can just download the instructions for the original LEGO Santa Fe Super Chief, BNSF etc. for free and refer to those instead.....?

D.

Because not quite everything of theirs is a pure 'copy'. If you look through the posted Brickshelf gallery, you'll see a dark green passenger train, for one (IMO the best) example. Also, some of the 'copied' designs are in alternate colors; such as the caboose.

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Entan? It is gasoline right? Here is a little commercial quote for Entan you all will love: "Entan, go 0,1 kilometers per hour with every 50 gallons!" :tongue::devil::laugh:

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Here's a link to a Flickr Set with all of them:

I just ordered the 629 Heavy Duty Passenger Locomotive "Frisco Fe" for $17, really more for the instructions than the bricks. I has a few neat features that I like. Based on what I think of the Frisco I just might also order the 630 Heavy Duty Freight Locomotive "Union Pacific".

Heck If nothing else I figure I can just build them with real Lego pieces...

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well, im going to put my 2cents on the topic of these,

i purchased some of the stock in april, and have had some time to look at it and find the problems

for a ref, here are the numbers i got...

#637 (4 wheeled box van)

#633 X2 ("entan thanker wagons)

#634 X2 (MoT hopper cars)

#627 (Derwent grange loco)

#628 X3 (enclosed red coaches)

#638 (MoT-esque loco)

the only pure knock offs are the entan tanker and the hopper cars, the my own train like loco has a fair bit of difference in the locomotive itself while the tender is an exact clone.

with the my own train original, the 2x2x2/65deg slopes only have a 2 stud gap inbetween each slope and a 4 stud gap between the rear slope and the front of the cab. The enlighten appropriation, theres a 3 stud gap between slopes and a two stud between the last slope and the cab. also enlighen have incorporated a lage door into the sides of the cab, this means the whole cab has had to be modified to suit the new door ways. the detailed sides on the loco have also been moved back 1 stud, and then you have their prints and funnel.One thing that irritated me about the loco is that the front bogey does not have the extra detail at the front (bricklink fixed that up :) ), all in all a good cheap loco.

all of the stuff in its construction is like lego. and the discolouration in the bricks themselves is at a minimum. so not bad quaulity...untill..

i decided on doing a drop test....

the loco seems to fall apart like the lego my own train loco, just a word of warning though, the couplers and the bogie connector plates are a little easier to break, so if passing to a smaller child, make sure you have some backup parts just in case ;)

also it may seem biassed, but the red coaches fit absolutely fine with my rolling stock, the design harks back to the 9v and the coach itself is very much like the ones on the metro liner. i paid $12 for each of the sets and they seem to be worth the money.

when i join M>LTC next year, hopefully they'll get a run.

P.S. i have been on a forum where one of the reasons it closed was because of knock offs like these, (anyone know of g scale mad?)and honestly, i hope not to see a repeat..

Cheers

Mikka

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well, im going to put my 2cents on the topic of these,

i purchased some of the stock in april, and have had some time to look at it and find the problems

>> Snippage <<

when i join M>LTC next year, hopefully they'll get a run.

P.S. i have been on a forum where one of the reasons it closed was because of knock offs like these, (anyone know of g scale mad?)and honestly, i hope not to see a repeat..

Thanks for the honest review of the sets.

I have to say that EB membership has shown a greater tolerance for the "Clone" brands lately and I share your hope that the trend continues. I actually just jumped on a deal ordered one each of all 18 Enlighten Train sets, The cost was $13.55 each including shipping from China!

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"How is this legal?", well, universal laws, TLG's patents and trademarks don't work in China. When they clone the bricks and practically anything they don't get arrested by Chinese government because they are not doing something wrong in Chinese laws and it's only until someone else foreign is to catch the bootleggers, take them to court and ...

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"How is this legal?", well, universal laws, TLG's patents and trademarks don't work in China. When they clone the bricks and practically anything they don't get arrested by Chinese government because they are not doing something wrong in Chinese laws and it's only until someone else foreign is to catch the bootleggers, take them to court and ...

It's not illegal to make similar bricks here either, LEGO lost their patents long ago. Outright copying sets is a different matter however.

- Sok.

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