~Black Seas Barracuda's little secrets~
Hello everyone! Welcome to my first article. As a new Classic-Pirates blogger, I'll try to focus on bringing you some things you may not know about classic pirates sets. And what better set to start with than the best set ever, aka 6285 - Black Seas Barracuda?
First, we'll see what are the differences between European and US package, then I'll show you some little secrets that lie behind this legendary set. Now let's go, I hope you'll enjoy :)!
At first glance, they look quite identical. However, the US version has some additional text on it : "Pirate system" under the Legoland logo, and "Ages 9-12" next to the Lego logo. Nothing too mind blowing, let's open the lid!
We have the same close-ups of the set, organized differently though. But there is one big difference : the US version has got a nice text which explain the Pirate theme context :
The reason why only the US version has it is simple : it's for english speaking countries, whereas European version is distributed to many countries with many different languages. It only has a small text in several languages which says "The ship does not float". It may sound trivial now, but remember this was one of the first Lego ship ever.
I'll let you guess which box is the US version (tip : in Europe, it is named "Dark Shark" ). Another notable difference between classic US and European boxes is that US versions always have shown parts count (under the name). This time I can't explain it (maybe another translation problem? Today they use "pcs/Stck/pzs/db"). European box has safety instructions.
For those wondering how it looks inside. It's the US version. (I didn't shoot the european version, but it has some very small differences in the plastic molds : the red oars are placed differently. I'll update this thread soon with a picture). The white boxes are quite unusual, don't they? Also, my US version has shooting cannons, which came only in very early versions of BSB.
Okay, now it's time to move onto interesting stuff. How many of you know that BSB and CC sails came uncut? Here's a proof :
Yes, you had to cut them yourself. I didn't mention it, but my US set is technically new (all bags have been opened and mixed, but it was never built), this is why my sails still are new. There was also a clue of it being never built in the "box content" picture, but only a few with very good eyes and Lego knowledge will see it :). If any of you think to have found what I mean, feel free to say it :), otherwise you'll understand when I review it.
Okay, you knew all that? Let's dig some more to uncover dark secrets!
Did you know that the very first European batch had some issues? It was by chance that I found it and so far I'm the only one to have came by it. I bought my european BSB second hand, but mint in box (this is the box shot for comparisons). At first, when I started to build it, everything looked fine. However, at step 6, a loose page fell from instructions. I first thought that they were damaged, but no, it was a single face printed page, with another step 6 :
It took me a few seconds to understand : the original step 6 had an error, can you spot it?
Loose page is on the left, original instructions on the right.
The first printed instructions came with an error, and TLG had to add a loose correction page. But wait, there is more!
When I had to attach the rigging, something felt strange. I had previously owned a BSB and something struck me as odd with this one. The rigging looked way too much bent :
I've checked everything to see where I made an error, but everything was fine. I thought there was another instructions error, not corrected this time, but didn't find anything. Then I tried with another rigging from my Rock Island Refuge set : it fitted perfectly.
That's right, first BSB batches riggings were different. I've made a small investigation, and found why they looked bent :
On the top, two of my BSB riggings, on the bottom, two of my Rock Island Refuge riggings. Yes, they're one stud longer. Looking closer, I found this :
The left one is the "normal" one, the middle one is the one which came with my BSB. Can you see the little numbers? I've checked all my other pirates sets with these riggings, they all have the 02 model. TLG first made them one stud too long (28 studs), then they made a "02" 27 studs long version to fit better.
Want more? Okay, I have one last little secret : a few days ago, a fantastic official stop-motion video has been posted, showing the first wave of Pirates sets. By looking at it, I've seen something on the Black Seas Barracuda which do not appear on the final model :
Obviously, the BSB should have come with a ship's bell. I've always wondered why did they put an arch there, now I know. I think they removed it because at this time it probably was seen as an illegal build, or maybe the round brick fell easily? However I'll add one to my model, as it looks fantastic!
Well, I think it's over. I hope you've had a good time reading this, see you in a next article for more classic-piratey things! And if you know something I don't, please comment it so I can add this to my article, you'll get credit :).
Edited by Boomchil, 08 November 2012 - 01:06 AM.