mostlytechnic

Review: 8067 Technic Mini Mobile Crane

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Now that the 2011 Technic sets are finally available in local stores, I just had to get several of them. I used some gift cards at Toys R Us to get both the 8065 Mini Container Truck and this set, the 8067 Mini Mobile Crane.

Name: Mini Mobile Crane

Set Number: 8067

Pieces: 282

Price: $24.99 / £20.99 / 19.99 Euro

Ages: 8-14

Minifigs: 0

Theme: Technic

Year of Release: 2011

Links: Bricklink Peeron Brickset

The Box Front

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It's a very standard Technic box. The inset shows the functions, although there's so many you can't tell for sure what knob is connected to which function (and they didn't even mark the knobs that control the outriggers.)

The Box Side

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This box does have one unique feature on the cover - the beam being lifted wraps around to the side of the box. I can't remember this being done on any other Technic box - if I'm wrong, please let me know in the discussion!

The Box Back

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As usual, the back shows the alternate model with an inset of the functions. For once, the B-model seems to have almost as much to do as the main model!

The "Actual Size" Part

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On top, there's the standard "actual size" part. I was surprised they used this panel. I actually had to look back at the front to see where it's used to get an idea of scale. Using something like the wheel would be more intuitive in my opinion.

The Manuals

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Two books are included, one for each design. They both use the pictures from the box and even are the exact same number of pages.

The Parts

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The liftarm selection is fairly small, but look at that - 24 axle connector perpendiculars in black, plus a pair of blue, plus some DBG (Dark Bluish Grey) double ones.

The Other Parts

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Sorry, but I'm not OCD enough to neatly organize all the small bits. Lots of axles, a pair of the ever-popular 8-axle with stops, and the usual assortment of small trans studs for "lights".

Building the Crane, 1

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The crane build starts like this. For someone experienced in Technic building, there's lots to see here. First, the blue axle connectors at the front are the seats. Blue is a common color for seats in Technic vehicles, so this is a nice nod to the past. Second, the steering is in place. Turning the vertical axle steers the front wheels. The back wheels look almost like a pendular suspension setup, but there's no movement.

Building the Crane, 2

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Now the yellow makes an appearance. The outriggers are in place and functional (the two knobs at the back each control one outrigger). The front is shaping as well, with the headlights in place.

Building the Crane, 3

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All that is left for the body of the truck is wheels and the cab. There are so many nice touches here. In addition to the blue seats, there's a small steering wheel and even thin liftarms as side mirrors. Personally, I'd like to see larger lights on the roof though. Perhaps just a second stud added, since I think a full-height cylinder would be too big.

Building the Crane, 4

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The crane is built as a separate module, just like on many other crane or claw trucks in the past. It's a simple mechanism, but still a lot of nice touches. The cab is about the right size. There's even a pair of 8 tooth gears on the side of the cable reel with no immediately obvious purpose. I finally figured out why they're there though - it's not just to pad the part count. The blue axlepin of the lower gear is a friction pin - so they are providing enough resistance to hold the load in the air as long as it's light. There is a second knob at the back, turning an axle coming forward with a worm gear on it. It turns the 8 tooth gear in the middle of the module, which raises the boom.

The Finished Crane

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And it's done. Attaching the crane to the truck body is just a single pin connection, so it's easily done (and undone if you wish). For a small set, there's a lot of action here. The outriggers lift the front wheels off the ground. The crane rotates and elevates with a knob. The HOG (Hand of God knob) handles the steering and another knob raises and lowers the hook. The boom can extend manually as well.

The Rear

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At the back of the crane are the main control knobs. The lower two work the outriggers. The center one raises the crane boom, and the knob on the right winds the cable.

The Technic, Axle and Pin Connector Perpendicular Split

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At the end of the boom is the only new part. This connector is found only in this set and the new 8069 Backhoe (where a pair are used as the outrigger feet).

The Family

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There are now three mobile cranes in my Lego collection. I love the similarities... the two newest have similar side mirrors. All three have the same bumper bars to hook too. I actually prefer the orange lights of the center crane. The ones on the large 8241 are too tall in my opinion, and the ones on the mini mobile crane are too small. All three have blue seats, but they're inconsistent. The two bigger cranes have matching seat sizes, but the smaller two use the same steering wheel.

Overhead

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An overhead picture really emphasizes just how small this set is compared to the other two mobile cranes.

Building the B-Model, 1

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The alternate tow truck model starts by building the frame of the truck. You can already see the wormgear that will eventually move the boom. The steering is also installed - it's a bit more complex than the steering of the main model in order to move the HOG further back.

Building the B-Model, 2

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Now the crane is installed. There's a simple direct control knob for the string spool, and an axle coming out the side that operates the boom (the knob isn't installed just yet). You can also see the lifter on the back for vehicle wheels.

Building the B-Model, done

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Here's the finished tow truck. You can see that there are no details inside the cab, since that space is taken up with the steering linkage. There is some decent (for this size set) detailing around the front end though, with headlights, bumper, and a grill.

The B-Model From the Front

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The designer managed to get a fair amount of detailing into a small vehicle. The headlights are obvious (though I don't like the blue pins they're mounted with). There's also no interior of the truck since that's the steering mechanism.

The Back End

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I'm sure this had to annoy the designer on this set. The 1x2 dark bley liftarms here are the kind with one pin and one axle hole. That's needed to make the structure here work. But there weren't enough in this set, so they had to use yellow 1x2 liftarms as well.

The Back End, Folded

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This is the reason for all the structure coming down the middle of the truck - it's all just to have that one axle connector sticking up so that the lifter is kept from hitting the wheels. In most sets, there would be more structure between the wheels that could be used, but since this model had to be built from what they had, this was the only way to do it.

B-Model Duo

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Both the 8067 Mini Mobile Crane and the 8065 Mini Container Truck this year have tow trucks as the alternate models. You can see the large size and detail difference in a $25, 300 piece set vs a $11, 100 piece set.

Big Daddy

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The big tow truck is of course the famous 8285 set. The yellow 8067 really stands out, although it's not a very realistic color for a tow truck, at least in the US.

The Conclusion

I like this set. It's just crammed full of features and knobs, although they're all quite simple and direct. They do have a couple nice linkages (the outriggers and the steering of the alternate model) but otherwise it's actually all very basic. For that reason, I prefer the smaller Mini Container Truck since it just strikes me as more interesting. This crane works but there's nothing really attention-grabbing to me about it.

The Ratings

Value: 9/10 - It's well under 10 cents a part and at just $25 it's a good deal. There's not much new or unusual, but it's a great intro set for someone new to Technic.

Design: 6/10 - I wrestled with this rating - There's nothing wrong with this set, but there's also just nothing to give it that cool factor that I want to see in a new set.

Playability: 9/10 - There is a lot to do with this set, in both builds.

Parts: 6/10 - It's a typical Technic assortment with almost nothing unusual or interesting.

Overall: 7/10 - I'd give this another point or two for someone who's new to Technic. It's ideal for them as an introduction to Technic design techniques. But for anyone who has built other Technic sets, it's not a must-buy.

My Flickr set for this set (to see the images larger)

Towing a tow truck

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8067 is giving 8065 a lift, but not really. The wheels don't fit into the lifter, so the 8065 falls off if you try to move.

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Another superb review, mostlytechnic! You've shown off the features really well, and you photography is amazing. :thumbup:

I look forward to seeing your next ones!

I haven't bought a Technic set for years, but it strikes me the designers have done really well putting lots of working features into even these smaller sets.

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I just built this little set yesterday. Being that I am not a big Technic fan I have to say it was an interesting build for me including the steering. Thanks for the excellent review Mostlytechnic the comparison pictures in particular were neat.

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Awesome review. I think this set is great, but it's a bit on the small side. I think $5 cheaper, and I would own this. I suddenly want that huge black tow truck now :laugh:

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I really like the steering! Its so simple, yet effective! They sure packed a lot of functions in there, thank for the review. :thumbup:

Edited by Zblj

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Thank you for the excellent detailed review. Time to see if I can build one from my spare parts.

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This is an easy set to assemble from parts if you've got much technic at all. The small panels (which are merely decorative) are the only things I didn't already have.

And I agree, I wouldn't have bought this at $25 except that I had gift cards to spend :)

And yes, you must get the big black tow truck (8285) - both the main and b-model are excellent. I actually bought 2 of them so I can have both versions.

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I wonder what's with this new trend of making ultra small Technic set? I personally think it's kinda weird, having a Technic as small as Lego City sized model...which would look too small with the rest of your Technic lineup on the shelf..but at the same time too ugly to be displayed in your Lego town diorama :laugh: But kudos to the designer for making something so small yet 'Technic'-ally functional! :thumbup:

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Overall: 7/10 - I'd give this another point or two for someone who's new to Technic. It's ideal for them as an introduction to Technic design techniques.

I just bought this as my first Technic set since I remembered you'd said this, and it looked miles more interesting than the $20 off-roader. And you were right, it is a great "Intro to Technic" set. I can see how someone who's built a lot of Technic wouldn't be too thrilled with it, since almost every function is directly controlled by knobs without intervening gear systems. But between the A and B models, it showed me enough of what Technic has to offer, and I'd really like to get one of the $59 sets now.

I like how both models offer different things. The crane looks more finished and sleek, making it a great display model, while the tow truck actually has much more interesting mechanisms and assembly process. I don't usually see this much value in alternate builds in Lego - the Creator theme gives you two alternates, but they never seem to be as good as the main build, and don't really give you much of a different building experience.

I think my biggest disappointment with the set is the way you extend the boom. That's really clunky. But for $25 I guess you aren't going to get everything, are you?

Anyway, great review. You really covered the set's features well, and I love those comparison shots.

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Thanks - glad you enjoyed the set :) Definitely try one of the bigger sets. I don't have any of the current sets other than the supercar, so I can't really recommend where to go next, but check out other reviews here and see what looks good to you.

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I had noticed it in store but 20 bucks seemed too much for a tiny model, although the functions seem to make up for it.

- Sok.

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I've made a litlle stopmotion video on the b-model

Edited by JunkstyleGio

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