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REVIEW: 8265 Wheel Loader


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#1 Blakbird

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 04:28 AM

Sorry for the delay folks, but I'm back from my vacation and it's about time I did this review. I've had the 8265 built for a couple of weeks now, and I have to say that it is a delight to build, to look at, and to operate. This set is very well done indeed and compares easily with the best Technic loaders ever made. Now on to the details!

One thing to keep in mind here is that this set has over 1,000 parts. Not too long ago, only a few of the very largest flagship sets could say this. Now we get a 1,000 piece set which is not even the year's flagship but which, in my opinion, clearly could have been. For reference, it has almost twice as many parts as the venerable 8459 loader.

Vital Statistics
  • Set 8265
  • 1061 Pieces
  • 34.5 ounces, 982 grams
  • Build time was about 3 hours (including taking all the pictures)
The Box
The box is very large. Pictures of the front and back can be seen below. This is one of the boxes in which you need to cut the rear corners to get it open. Unlike many of these boxes, everything inside was in good shape with no squashing of the instructions. In fact, they look like they came right off of the presses.

You can see that the B model is a log loader which looks very good as well, but I have not yet built it.

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The Instructions
The instructions come in three large booklets. They have 55, 61, and 61 pages respectively. There are a total of 122 major steps, as well as another 12 steps which can be used to add a motor and lights to the model (which I highly recommend). The instructions are quite clear, as usual, although I find that the splits between the booklets are rather arbitrary and slightly annoying. Like all the newer sets, these instructions come with a parts list at the end.

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Inside the Box
There are 10 bags inside the box as well as a few loose pieces which I'll discuss a bit later.

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New and/or Noteworthy Parts
Those interested in the new parts will be very interested in this set as it contains a very good selection of them.

The most obvious new parts are these box beams. In keeping with the new tradition of using odd numbered lengths and widths for studless beams, this part is 5x7. There are axle holes in all 3 directions: 8 total on the face, 6 total on the sides, and 6 total on the ends. This vast array of connections make the part very versatile and usable in many situations. This large framed beam is very stiff in bending so I can imagine it becoming the foundation of many new large models. There are 3 of these parts in the set (TLG #64179) in light bley.

There is 1 of the larger panels in yellow (TLG #62531) as previously described in my hauler review.

There are also a pair of highly stylized fairings in dark bley. These have appeared before in other themes, but never in Technic.

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Here you can see 11 of the 3x3 T-beams in dark blay as described in my hauler review. These were loose in the box, and the parts list only calls for 8 of them. There were 8 of them in light bley in the bags. I can only assume that there was a late change to the color after the bags were packed, so they threw a handful of the right color in the box. This means you get a bunch of bonus samples of this rare part!

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There are 8 brand new 3x2 parts which I will call Axle Joiner, Perpendicular. They look like the old 1x2 axle joiner, perpendicular except with an extra stud appended on either side. I can imagine these being quite useful. You also get 3 linear actuators along with their attachment brackets.

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What about gears? Well, you are in for a treat as you can see in the picture. Of particular note are the 2 new style differentials, 6 clutch gears, and 9 of the 20 tooth double bevel gears.

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Here you see 4 of the large 81.6x36 tires and the big 18x10 bucket which has only appeared twice before in the 8459 and 8455 sets.

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Finally, there are these two mystery parts which seem to be bricked shaped and have studs on top. I've never seen such a thing. :classic:

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The Build
This was a rather complex build loaded with technical functions, as you'll soon see. The finished model is huge and lovely. Though not entirely modular, much of the construction uses smaller sub-module which are integrated throughout the build.

First we can see the base of the frame incorporating the 4 wheel drive with 2 differentials and an articulation axis at the middle. The core of the frame is the box beams. There is no center diff.

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These next two images show the front and back view of the lift assembly. This is the front of the loader and contains the gears to both raise and dump the bucket via the linear actuators. You can see the clutch gear which allows the functions to be concentric.

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Here is the nearly completed front lift assembly. The two U-joints you see allow the functions of both sets of linear actuators to be controlled from the rear of the vehicle.

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Here are the lift actuators and their gearing which passes through u-joints to allow their input angle to change.

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This shows the guts of the transmission which uses a driving ring to switch between functions. This allows the rear input to control either the bucket lift or the bucket tilt. Notice all the clutch gears and the significant complexity of the structural geometry.

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Here a significant portion of the aft structure has been built. The yellow link you see in the foreground is used to control the steering of the articulation. Previous loaders have used gears and turntables, but this is a mechanical linkage instead.

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Here's the rear mounted V-6 engine which is driven from the rear differential. As you can see, the engine is cantilevered completely behind the rear axle so it acts as a counterweight. The gears you see in front of it are actually part of the drive system for the transmission (linear actuator control).

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Now the back end is more complete with the rear radiator and fenders. The axle you see passing all the way to the back is the input for the linear actuators. The black double bevel gear is used to drive them. As you might expect, this is quite tedious. However, this axle can be replaced by a motor making everything much easier.

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Behold the complexity! If you like gears, mechanisms, and everything else which is generally Technicy, then you will adore this set. The technical details are very well done indeed. Note the three u-joints running across the articulation axis.

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The Verdict
Now we can take a look at the completed model from a few angles. One of the things you will notice immediately is how good it looks. There are plenty of cheese slopes, lights, railings, and other greeble. This is great for a Technic model since this really brings out the best of both worlds (function and aesthetics). In fact, I'd say you'd be hard pressed to find an official Technic model which looks much better. Look at the railings, the radiator, the fenders, the mirrors, and the engine cover.

The engine cover opens up and exposes the engine. The overhead Hand of God gears controls the steering. The rear gear controls the linear actuators. The red lever on the left shifts between functions. The engine is driven by any of the 4 wheels.

I would personally rate this set right up there with the best Technic sets ever made, especially among the construction vehicles. I would highly recommend it to any collector or enthusiast. It looks great and works great and I even think the price is reasonable for what you get. I know it's hard to believe, but I think this set is equal or superior to 8459.

  • Price: 8/10
  • Functions: 9/10 (for the size of the model)
  • Appearance: 10/10
  • Parts: 9/10 (lots of good stuff here)
  • Total: 9/10 I'd consider this set a "must-have" for any serious Technic fan.

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Scale
In case you are trying to get a feel for how big this is, I've included a couple of comparison pictures. First we see it next to a pair of other loaders. On the right is 8459, and on the right is Nico71's motorized wheel loader. For reference, all 3 use the same bucket.

Next is a comparison with the 8275 bulldozer. This loader is really big!

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Wrap Up
While building this model, I listened to a random medley of 80's heavy metal. I think the mood was really set by Helix and Megadeth.

Rock on AFOLs, rock on.



Edited by Blakbird, 06 June 2012 - 03:11 PM.

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#2 Sinner

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 04:50 AM

This is my must-buy Technic set of the year. As you say it's a great looking model and the functionality is wonderful. Thanks for the great review!  :sweet:

I do have one question; what's the steering like?





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#3 Blakbird

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 04:58 AM

View PostSiegfried, on Jul 30 2009, 08:50 PM, said:

This is my must-buy Technic set of the year. As you say it's a great looking model and the functionality is wonderful. Thanks for the great review!  :sweet:

I do have one question; what's the steering like?

The steering is pretty tight.  It's not full of backlash like the telescopic handler.  If turned all the way to the right, sometimes it can get jammed due to the mechanism being near on-center.
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#4 CP5670

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 06:02 AM

Great review. Like Siegfried said, this easily looks like the best set of the year to me. I think 8258 has too many shortcomings to be a true classic, but this 8265 is nearly perfect. :thumbup: I will get this and other sets in a month, when I can take advantage of the Brickfair discounts.

The mechanics of this set are actually more complex and interesting than 8459 due to the LAs, and for $80 it's quite a large and detailed model. It would be nice to have the cab steering wheel work like 8459, but that's very minor.

Quote

The steering is pretty tight. It's not full of backlash like the telescopic handler. If turned all the way to the right, sometimes it can get jammed due to the mechanism being near on-center.

How does it compare to 8459's steering in terms of overall smoothness? I think 8459 has very nice steering.

#5 furious

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 07:10 AM

Once I finish paying all my bills I will be all over the new technic sets like a green goo.

#6 Jetro

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 09:20 AM

Mine won't arrive till after my holidays, but I already feel a lot better about having ordered it. At first glance it looked like the Snow Groomer and Crane Truck were much more interesting, but seeing the technical complexity of this set I might be wrong. Even so, the B model doesn't look very appealing - or am I wring again?

#7 MadAboutLego

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 09:53 AM

Yeh this set looks great. The review was great and I liked it when he put all of them together :classic:
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#8 gladiator

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 11:51 AM

wow.... I want this set.
thanks for excellent review Blackbird

#9 Conchas

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 11:54 AM

Personally I wouldn't say it is the best set of the year, because I also like the 8258 too much, but wouldn't say which is better from both as well.

Fully agree on Blakbird's comment, this model could clearly have been the flagship for this year, or if the pattern repeats the flagship for the current two years cycle.
Thus can only imagine they have also something very good, for 2010.


Thanks Eric!
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#10 cagri

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 12:08 PM

I was thinking about using the 5x7 liftarms & 3x2 connectors exactly like this :) Great review Blakbird, thansk a lot!

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#11 Richie

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 12:17 PM

A sticker sheet is included, isn't it?
If I buy this, I don't use them anyway. I see the pictures now without stickers, and this loader looks great without . When I first saw pictures of it with stickers, I lost my interest, cause I hate stickers. But now I see one without, I think it looks even more beautiful. It's almost certain what I want for my birthday.  :laugh:

Thanks for the review Blakbird!

It's multifunctionomical.

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#12 Milan

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 12:32 PM

Nice review, and nice set.

Definitely beautiful model, with great look and excellent technical aspect.
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#13 Big Cam

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 02:39 PM

Great review!!!

#14 ZO6

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 04:19 PM

Both a wonderful model and review.  Thank you very much!

Seeing how expensive this model is in Canada, I'm hoping that it will arrive in stores soon enough as I don't really want to pay even more for shipping & handling from S@H (though your review is really making me want the set sooner than later  :tongue: ).

BTW, I'd probably motorize the loader, but I'm curious as to how much cranking is required to raise and lower the bucket in comparison to raising and lowering the boom on the telescopic handler?

#15 Brickvergnugen

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 04:35 PM

Thanks for the well structured review. This is a must have just for the wealth of moving parts!
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#16 Anio

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 05:20 PM

View PostZO6, on Jul 31 2009, 06:19 PM, said:

BTW, I'd probably motorize the loader, but I'm curious as to how much cranking is required to raise and lower the bucket in comparison to raising and lowering the boom on the telescopic handler?
When I look at the photos, the gear seems to be 1:1 in both mechanism (there are only 16t).
So, I would say 26,5 rounds.  :hmpf_bad:

#17 CP5670

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 05:26 PM

I'm going to replace the black knob gear with an 80s style crank right away when I get the set, as I have done with all recent sets. That makes manually operated models much more fun to play with.

#18 dunamis

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 06:10 PM

Thanks for the very details and awesome review!  This was on my must-buy list as soon as I saw photos of it.  It looks like a really fun Technic build.
So much LEGO, so little time...

#19 Blakbird

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 06:31 PM

View PostCP5670, on Jul 30 2009, 11:02 PM, said:

How does it compare to 8459's steering in terms of overall smoothness? I think 8459 has very nice steering.
8459 is smoother and turns more sharply.

View PostRichie, on Jul 31 2009, 05:17 AM, said:

A sticker sheet is included, isn't it?
If I buy this, I don't use them anyway.
Yes, it comes with stickers.  I just haven't put them on yet.

View PostZO6, on Jul 31 2009, 09:19 AM, said:

BTW, I'd probably motorize the loader, but I'm curious as to how much cranking is required to raise and lower the bucket in comparison to raising and lowering the boom on the telescopic handler?
The amount of cranking is about the same as the telescopic handler.  You'll get Carpal Tunnel Syndrome if you use it for more than 5 minutes.
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#20 paul_delahaye

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 06:48 PM

Hi,

How well does the model accept the power functions components?  Do they fit in nicely or look like an after thought?

Do you need to sacrifice any of the detail for the motors/controls?

Paul

#21 Blakbird

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Posted 31 July 2009 - 06:58 PM

View Postpaul_delahaye, on Jul 31 2009, 11:48 AM, said:

How well does the model accept the power functions components?  Do they fit in nicely or look like an after thought?

Do you need to sacrifice any of the detail for the motors/controls?
Motor integration is very similar to the 8294 excavator.  The battery box fits under the engine and it nearly totally hidden.  The motor fits above the engine and is hidden by the hood (bonnet).  The only thing you see it the pole reverser on the top, again similar to 8294.  Strictly speaking, you wouldn't have to use the pole reverser since you could just use the switch on the battery box.  The motorization also uses the LED lights.  I'll post a picture after I try it.
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#22 LittleBuilder

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 02:13 PM

Wow, this set is amazing, lot of awsome electronic piece, I can't wonder about all possibility!  :laugh:

#23 paanjang16

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Posted 01 August 2009 - 03:32 PM

There's a video on Youtube showing someone fully motorizing the Wheel loader with Remote control



Darn it, after watching this video I now want BOTH the 8258 and 8265!! :vader:

#24 calebexo01

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Posted 02 August 2009 - 08:14 PM

im not a big technic fan, but this set looks so great that i am highly considering buying it! great review and thanks!

#25 Front

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Posted 04 August 2009 - 12:02 AM

I hate to buy Lego at full price, but some Technic sets trigger me to lay down cash as soon as the set is available. Will have to check the store early in the morning. I have to see if I still can get the Combined Harvester (8274) too, I had to give mine away to a friend last week, after we built it together. Don't bring your sets to your friends house, if you want to keep it  :classic:



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