Well here goes with my first review, hope you like it...
I know some of the pictures are a little fuzzy, but I didn't manage to ship my tripod to my new house yet. The light balance is all over the place as the pictures were taken over the course of the day it took (on and off) to build it. I have had a quick search and couldn't find another review yet (although there are loads of pics on EB already), so hope this is useful.
I got this set as part of my engagement present (the other bit being the UCS Millennium Falcon) - amazing what a few years of brainwashing can do to your girlfriend (and now wife)
The box is quite a bit smaller than the MF, and very densely packed inside...
Size compared to the transport ferry which has about 1/4 of the pieces:
The box has three sub-boxes inside, which makes life a little easier when it comes to building:
...and here's all the polybags with my lovely loot nicely sealed up - but not for long!
This is where I find the sub-boxes come in really handy - I don't like to sort all the pieces out on a part-type basis, as it takes forever. I generally empty the smaller pieces into a few plastic containers / wife's prized fruit bowl:
...and as huge sets like this have multiples of the same polybag, like this:
I simply stack them next to each other in the sub-boxes:
This gives me a fairly decent classification of similar parts, and I tend to find my hands figure out where to dart for the next piece all by themselves.
Sorry for the boring part sorting digression, back to the review...
The instructions come in three parts, with multiple pieces added on each page - the instructions in this case are very clear, the difference between different colours is fine:
The base of the Taj is split into 6 sections, basically made up of a box structure with arches along the front (here's the first one with some nicer offsett-jumper steps, and the start of the second one):
...and some simple pillars at the back:
The corners where the minarets will stand are made using plate-hinges - a little fiddly, but Lego's wonderful geometry is used to great effect:
Moving on to the minarets, they are quite simple with a few connected axles up the middle to keep them together:
There is a lot of repetition in this set, as you can see I like to build them all at the same time, rather than going back over again. Does mean that you end up sticking the same ##*~#^# 1*1 clear tiles together a couple of hundred times, but there you go.
The main building in the middle is made up of 4 door sections and four corners. The door sections don't actually have doors in them, but you get the idea:
And look - official Lego SNOT! I know loads of people do this all the time (must get round to uploading my medieval village with all the barding that works like this), but is this the first time that Lego has made use of this particular horizontal to vertical ratio trick?
Here's a completed door section, in official shaky-cam mode
The corner sections are fun to build, apart from the 36 1*1 clear tiles (did I mention them) that you need to stick together on each of the two floors of each of the four corners:
Sticking it all together, you have a box, albeit a pretty one:
The roof is a collection of technic beams, that wouldn't be out of place on the MF (got bored of taking photos by now, so engage imagination please).
The central dome is made up from a tower and some snottiness, but it isn't a patch on the one in this MOC Taj Mahal at Brickworld
The tower is made up from a central skeleton and some click hinge wrap-aroundness:
With the dome bit constructed in 4 bits and stuck together:
Not bad, but its doesn't look as good as maybe it could have done?
Pretty much done now, here's all the sections:
...and all finished
not sure where I went wrong (and I don't think I did), but look at the left-overs....
think all those 1*6 plates came from just one separate poly-bag that didn't contain any other parts - weird as all the other white 1*6s where mixed up in other bags. Did a stray bag make it into my box? think I'd better send them back to Lego... Or not.
Took about a day to complete, with several large breaks for breakfast, lovely night out for curry, and a dash into Kingston upon Thames to get the 4991 police helicopter from the Mirror offer, not bad for 65p. My thumb is quite sore from all the pressing, but it is worth the pain.
thanks for sticking with me, sorry its all been a bit dry (I've got a Fabuland crow somewhere that I could insert in amusing positions, but I lack the skill and imagination, for now)
price: 5. £200 in Lego shop in Brighton, really good value (although cost to me = 0 due to wife, brainwashing etc)
parts: 5. absolutely brilliant - I love all the white arches
build: 3. repetitive at times, but it is famous as one of the most symmetrical buildings in the world, so what do you expect?
looks: 5. absolutely fabulous.
swooshability: don't go there. Or try with yours and post pics - mine is staying on the ground.
overall 5 - would be a 4 because of all those little 1*1s and the pain they caused my poor little fingers, but in this case it is forgiven as it is just amazing. Not as good as the MF though.
Now have to press the Big Scary Button that will post all the pictures of Cornwall where I thought I had Taj Mahal's...
...oh, there's a preview...
...that doesn't preview the pics...
...curse those damned dynamic links to hell...
...engage gender transformation mode and try to read some instructions for once in your life...
...be with you shortly...
Edited by WhiteFang, 03 December 2009 - 02:21 AM.