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Powering Enlighten Trains: RC or PF ?


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#1 Buddha Bricks

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Posted 29 September 2010 - 02:48 AM

I'm hoping someone here knows these products and could me out. I've ordered those lego knockoffs from SK (please don't shoot... i'm unarmed). I have yet to receive them but the total sets make 2 fairly large trains and a good  length of track.

Now i'm wondering how i will motorize them.

I'm new to the whole train scene so i don't know much about this, but one thing i know is that i don't want to go with the old 9v system as i don't want to go through the trouble of sticking aluminium tape all the way along the tacks. My remaining options are RC which is discontinued or Power Functions.

But for starters, if anyone can tell me, are theses motor compatible with what i purchased? And if so, what are the advantages of one and other, function-wise and cost-wise ?

Do both the systems necessarily use IR or can't i just hookup a motor base and switch ?

Normally would i put a motor on the front locomotive only or on every waggon also?

I've listed the sets my boys will be receiving for xmas (if i can keep them hidden away till them), so it could give an idea.

  • Enlighten Train Series :0627 Enlighten Steam
  • Enlighten Train Series :0628 Enlighten Passenger Car (X2)
  • Enlighten Train Series :0638 Steam Freight Locomotive
  • Enlighten Train Series :0633 Mine Car
  • Enlighten Train Series :0634 Tank Car
  • Enlighten Train Series :0635 Timber Car
  • Enlighten Train Series :0636 Dining Car
  • Enlighten Train Series :0637 Freight Car
  • Enlighten Train Series :0639 Track (X2)
  • Enlighten Train Series :0640 Convert The Track (X2)

I found a whole lot of pics on flickr. Thanks amandojames!


One on the engines for xmas :
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The other one.
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Here is a lego train beside an enlighten train
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which is which ?

#2 fred67

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Posted 29 September 2010 - 02:58 AM

View PostBuddha Bricks, on 29 September 2010 - 02:48 AM, said:

which is which ?

:hmpf:

BNSF = LEGO, Union Pacific = CRAP.

However, if you think they'll actually make it down the track without rattling apart, the new PF train motor should work - it depends on whether or not enlighten stole the exact technic pin train bogey or not.

You'll need to add the battery and IR receiver.  They will likely be visible.  You'll also need a remote. Good luck.

:hmpf_bad:

#3 Peppermint_M

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Posted 29 September 2010 - 07:37 AM

Hi. You are aware the Enlighten is a Bootleg (as in direct rip off) of Lego?

I have condsidered the rail track (brown is nicer then bley) but space constraints means no trains  :sad: . I myself wanted to get an actual Lego train and then use the tracks for extension instead of the expensive Lego track.

The Train Tech forum will likely hold the key to switching motors.

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#4 Buddha Bricks

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Posted 06 October 2010 - 03:52 PM

View PostJanice_M, on 29 September 2010 - 07:37 AM, said:

You are aware the Enlighten is a Bootleg (as in direct rip off) of Lego?
So i'm guessing then that these models are direct copies of kits that LEGO sold in the past.

Could someone tell me what LEGO train these 2 are copied from :
Enlighten Train Series :0627 Enlighten Steam
Enlighten Train Series :0638 Steam Freight Locomotive


View PostJanice_M, on 29 September 2010 - 07:37 AM, said:

The Train Tech forum will likely hold the key to switching motors.
You are totally right!

#5 Peppermint_M

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Posted 06 October 2010 - 09:30 PM

I hope Train Tech helped in ID-ing the sets copied.
I am not knowledgeable about Trains, only clone brands and minifigs  :thumbup:

I hope your sets are a good quality. Price is always the reason I never have Lego trains (one day a layout will have some form of train!) You and your sons have fun playing with them!

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#6 Bonaparte

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Posted 06 October 2010 - 10:33 PM

I'm sure our train fanatics in our Train Tech forum would love to see what this clone brand has produced/copied. They are best suited to answer your questions.

Moved to Train Tech!

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#7 MetroiD

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 01:31 AM

Well, providing that the images you supplied are of those locomotives you asked about:
The first one (0627) is a way too 'enlightened' rip-off of the Hogwarts Express sets.
As to the black one (0638, I presume), it's a blatant copy of LEGO's brilliant 10205 Steam Engine, which came in a variety of colours.
The attempt at copying the GP-38? Don't get me started on that one!

As to your question about powering them, I'd listen to fred67 - I'm just not sure if those Enlighten trains would take too kindly to actually being powered. I just wouldn't trust the quality of their plastic enough to run them using PF motors (due to issues such as friction, rigidity, etc.). As to trying out the RC system or using bogies - I'm not sure if you can get a hold of the RC elements without actually buying a LEGO train set from those times, and as to the PF bogies - it really depends on whether the respective Enlighten and LEGO pieces are 100% compatible.
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#8 Lego Otaku

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 02:56 AM

Unless you really want a cheap train set for display and not to play with, I'd avoid them.  I've read stories about Enlighten bricks being very loose and comes apart easily. Plus they rip off many of official instruction and even pictures, they are true counterfeit. Not like Mega Bloks clone but blatant pirated stuff.

I've resorted to adding -enlighten to all of eBay searched just to get rid of them.

Having said that, it is possible to add motor to it.  But don't count on a long running display while pulling more than 2 cars, it will likely fall apart.

PS anyone know if there is a VERO Lego account on eBay? There's a lot of Enlighten and Enlightenment[sic] all over Lego category.

#9 drdavewatford

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 09:19 AM

Sorry to go off at a tangent, but I'd never previously seen LEGO rip-offs like these, only ever other brands which happen to be LEGO-compatible. Looking at Union Pacific, you can see how some of the pieces have literally been copied like for like, e.g. the arms holding the side railings. That having been said, the inferior quality of these knock-offs is also clear - the colours seem washed out against the LEGO, and the models have a very 'waxy', almost translucent, look about them which I guess speaks to the cheap plastic used.

Interesting.

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#10 hoeij

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 02:20 PM

View PostBuddha Bricks, on 29 September 2010 - 02:48 AM, said:

Now i'm wondering how i will motorize them.

I'm new to the whole train scene so i don't know much about this, but one thing i know is that i don't want to go with the old 9v system as i don't want to go through the trouble of sticking aluminium tape all the way along the tacks. My remaining options are RC which is discontinued or Power Functions.

But for starters, if anyone can tell me, are theses motor compatible with what i purchased? And if so, what are the advantages of one and other, function-wise and cost-wise ?

Lego designed these trains during the 9V area, so the easiest way to motorize them is with a 9V motor.  That way you can motorize them without any change to the design of the trains. One motor should certainly be enough for a train, you definitely don't have to put a motor in every car.

To motorize them with RC or PF have to find a place to put the battery box  (to see the battery box, go to www.bricklink.com  click on catalog items, then type bb466) and the receiver (catalog item 58123c01).  That will likely involve making modifications to the train.

I'm wondering though, if you buy all the stuff you need (the battery box, receiver, remote control) would you still have saved money compared to say lego train 7939?  The Enlighten trains are cheap, but shipping is not cheap because it has to come from a country that does not care about obvious piracy.  Resale value (if you want to sell the trains after the kids grow up) is probably tiny on the Enlighten trains, while if you sell a used 7939 train set ten years from now, it will probably sell for roughly the same amount that you pay for it now.

#11 Buddha Bricks

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 02:34 PM

View Postdrdavewatford, on 07 October 2010 - 09:19 AM, said:

the inferior quality of these knock-offs is also clear - the colors seem washed out against the LEGO, and the models have a very 'waxy', almost translucent, look about them which I guess speaks to the cheap plastic used.

Interesting.

Considering the price, i can get over the colors and overall look, it's the clutch power I'm concerned about. Anyhow, you can be sure that i will share my comments once the boys and i played with them for a while (some time after Xmas).

View Posthoeij, on 07 October 2010 - 02:20 PM, said:

I'm wondering though, if you buy all the stuff you need (the battery box, receiver, remote control) would you still have saved money compared to say lego train 7939?  The Enlighten trains are cheap, but shipping is not cheap because it has to come from a country that does not care about obvious piracy.  Resale value (if you want to sell the trains after the kids grow up) is probably tiny on the Enlighten trains, while if you sell a used 7939 train set ten years from now, it will probably sell for roughly the same amount that you pay for it now.

The whole lot listed above i got from ebay for under 120USD shipping included. This makes 2 large trains and lots of track. I suppose the kids will play with them for at least 10 years (they are 3 and 4 year olds) so prolly won't resale ether.

Assuming i will invest in PF for both trains, the total cost will be over 250$, so it's somewhat of a risk I'm taking.

And on the subject of bootlegs, i did get the chance to try out a small KAZI set. The bricks where ok i guess, though one cracked, but the real turnoff was the quality of the minifigs. Arms and hands fell off so i ended up keeping only the head and legs a spares, trashed the torso and hands.

But i read that Enlighten minifigs are of better quality... let's hope, as i'm not sure my atlantis scuba divers will make good train conductors  :hmpf_bad:

#12 SavaTheAggie

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 07:30 PM

View PostBonaparte, on 06 October 2010 - 10:33 PM, said:

I'm sure our train fanatics in our Train Tech forum would love to see what this clone brand has produced/copied. They are best suited to answer your questions.

Moved to Train Tech!
This Brickshelf Gallery holds photos of many of the Enlighten Train lineup.  Some trains are direct copies, others are unique designs (or copies of some other brand of which I am unaware).

http://www.brickshel...ry.cgi?f=433917

I'm rather fond of the dark green locomotive and car, and the prime mover included in the Santa Fe rip-off.

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#13 Toastie

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 11:24 PM

View PostSavaTheAggie, on 07 October 2010 - 07:30 PM, said:

This Brickshelf Gallery holds photos of many of the Enlighten Train lineup.  Some trains are direct copies, others are unique designs (or copies of some other brand of which I am unaware).

http://www.brickshel...ry.cgi?f=433917

I'm rather fond of the dark green locomotive and car, and the prime mover included in the Santa Fe rip-off.

--Tony


Tony,

as an expert in train building, how do you rate the Enlighten all-plastic track quality? Do you happen to had the chance of inspecting any of those? I am completely obsessed by original LEGO, no doubts here, but when TLC decides on not continuing the 9V system because they can maximize revenue with all platic rails and bloody batteries, I couldn't care less finding an appropriate 9V track substitue. I am seriously entertaining the idea of putting metal foil on RC track, as has been described elsewhere, but possibly not on the original LEGO stuff, provided the Dragon Empire makes reasonable dead-cheap copies (Sorry TLC, the 9V termination DID hurt, and I am not willing to give in here ...).

Regards,
Thorsten

#14 SavaTheAggie

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Posted 08 October 2010 - 12:09 AM

View PostToastie, on 07 October 2010 - 11:24 PM, said:

Tony,

as an expert in train building, how do you rate the Enlighten all-plastic track quality? Do you happen to had the chance of inspecting any of those? I am completely obsessed by original LEGO, no doubts here, but when TLC decides on not continuing the 9V system because they can maximize revenue with all platic rails and bloody batteries, I couldn't care less finding an appropriate 9V track substitue. I am seriously entertaining the idea of putting metal foil on RC track, as has been described elsewhere, but possibly not on the original LEGO stuff, provided the Dragon Empire makes reasonable dead-cheap copies (Sorry TLC, the 9V termination DID hurt, and I am not willing to give in here ...).

Regards,
Thorsten
I'm sorry, but that's not my Brickshelf gallery.  I have not had a chance to see these clones in person, so I can't give you any opinions.  

I've also seen some work by others on Brickshelf in creating 9v track out of standard model train track, connecting standard rails to LEGO plates.  It seems like more effort in the beginning, but perhaps a longer life span compared to metal foil.  

Either case, though, I have not tried it nor seen it in person.

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#15 Hewman

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Posted 08 October 2010 - 02:13 AM

View PostBuddha Bricks, on 07 October 2010 - 02:34 PM, said:

Considering the price, i can get over the colors and overall look, it's the clutch power I'm concerned about. Anyhow, you can be sure that i will share my comments once the boys and i played with them for a while (some time after Xmas).



The whole lot listed above i got from ebay for under 120USD shipping included. This makes 2 large trains and lots of track. I suppose the kids will play with them for at least 10 years (they are 3 and 4 year olds) so prolly won't resale ether.

Assuming i will invest in PF for both trains, the total cost will be over 250$, so it's somewhat of a risk I'm taking.

And on the subject of bootlegs, i did get the chance to try out a small KAZI set. The bricks where ok i guess, though one cracked, but the real turnoff was the quality of the minifigs. Arms and hands fell off so i ended up keeping only the head and legs a spares, trashed the torso and hands.

But i read that Enlighten minifigs are of better quality... let's hope, as i'm not sure my atlantis scuba divers will make good train conductors  :hmpf_bad:

I bought an enlighten pirate ship (one of their 'original' designs) and it was substandard, and figs were very ordinary. I posted a topic here on it.
I love my 9V trains, and as appealing as the pictures seem in that they look like a cheap alternative to get extra carriages, there's no way I'm going near them or their copy of the 9V track, I jus tthink it would cause hours of frustration.

#16 frogstudio

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Posted 08 October 2010 - 02:11 PM

After reading the posts, I was wondering how many of you have actually had in your hands one of these trains.  Personally, I own most of them.  Though I'm not keen on piracy, the simple truth is that, here in Argentina, getting a LEGO train is really hard.  If you manage to get one, you'll end paying U$S 500.-for one of the new PF trains.  If you want to buy one in Bricklink and have it shipped here, you'll end up paying the actual cost of the set + shipping + 50% of import taxes (applied on both the actual cost AND the shipping cost!!!) + a 21% of internal taxes (applied on the whole number).  So, a U$S100 set with a shipping cost of U$S 20.- would end up costing you U$S 210,8.-!!!!  It's simply crazy!!! So, when I was in China this year and saw the opportunity to get a whole bunch of trains to populate my train yard, I grabbed the chance and got them. Putting aside all legal issues, I would like to state a few things about their quality and designs. Though most of them are COMPLETE rip offs of LEGO models, there are some unusual and unique ones.  The dark green train is a completely original design, based on a chinese locomotive and carriage of the '80s.  Also, one of the steam locomotives is also an original design. Some of the pieces (train doors, mainly), are also original designs.  The plastic of the bricks is brittle, with really sharp edges and a bit dullier than the original stuff. Colors match almost perfectly except for the yellow, which is much brighter than the original (has some kind of orange component to it).  Tan color is also of a different shade.  One big quality issue, to me, is in the clear pieces.  They all have a milky effect on them, not being 100% transparent.  All printed pieces are actually PRINTED.  No stickers, and the printing is actually quite good. Clutching power is actually too clutchy.  The set won't tare apart in your hands, and in fact is quite difficult to detach pieces.  Minifigs are not as good as the real stuff, but overall, they have nice printings and I have no problem in meangling them with my LEGO crowd. There are two main quality issues though, and both relate when thinking of powering them.  The first one is the weight of the pieces.  These bricks are MUCH HEAVIER than original LEGO bricks, which will put a lot of strain on the motor you choose.  The other issue has to do with the boogies and wheel pieces.  They don't roll as smoothly as the original, adding even more strain on the motor. So don't expect to make long trains run!!!  My guess is that 9V or 12V motors won't have a problem with it, but I would be cautious about RC and PF motors.  Since I bought the sets just to serve as "background filling" for my layout, this is not of much concern to me.  I will only be powering one of the sets (the chinese locomotive and carriage)and I'll be changing all boggies and wheels for this set, and probably use two motors on it.  So, this are my two cents.  Hope it was usefull for you.  Cheers!!!

Edited by frogstudio, 08 October 2010 - 02:17 PM.


#17 Buddha Bricks

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Posted 08 October 2010 - 10:48 PM

Thanks all! I'm glad to see this is hot topic.

Frogstudio, please keep us posted when done with your project.

#18 wtorbeyns

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Posted 08 October 2010 - 11:11 PM

View Postfrogstudio, on 08 October 2010 - 02:11 PM, said:

After reading the posts, I was wondering how many of you have actually had in your hands one of these trains.  

I have two coaches of the green train. I concur on most of what you wrote: ok-ish quality, good printing, most bricks hold together nicely. I don't think that the colors are a very good match for real Lego, nor are they very consistent. I'm not sure about the weight issue, but I didn't research this, so you're probably right there too. I completely agree on the higher resistance in the wheels/bogies. That's a serious issue.

What I really don't get with these sets is the very poor design. The green coaches have part of the roof and one wall that is supposed to hinge out and upward. But the hinges that are used simply haven't enough clutching power for this action. Each time they come loose. The red coaches look nice and simple, but they have one wall that opens like a giant double door. What's wrong with the simple concept of a detachable roof? The two steam engines have boilers that you can open and look inside. And there you'll find a diesel engine! The entire gray part of the Santa Fe ripoff hinges upward! All these design decisions made by Enlighten seem completely silly. They are not realistic and they don't add anything to the play value.

The only rolling stock that looks marginally interesting to me are the closed 'freight car' and the 'mine car' (hopper). These are complete ripoffs of Lego models, but they are so cheap that it might actually be possible to built a goods train with a number of identical cars.

#19 Toastie

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Posted 09 October 2010 - 12:19 AM

View Postwtorbeyns, on 08 October 2010 - 11:11 PM, said:

I have two coaches of the green train. I concur on most of what you wrote: ok-ish quality, good printing, most bricks hold together nicely. I don't think that the colors are a very good match for real Lego, nor are they very consistent. I'm not sure about the weight issue, but I didn't research this, so you're probably right there too. I completely agree on the higher resistance in the wheels/bogies. That's a serious issue.

What I really don't get with these sets is the very poor design. The green coaches have part of the roof and one wall that is supposed to hinge out and upward. But the hinges that are used simply haven't enough clutching power for this action. Each time they come loose. The red coaches look nice and simple, but they have one wall that opens like a giant double door. What's wrong with the simple concept of a detachable roof? The two steam engines have boilers that you can open and look inside. And there you'll find a diesel engine! The entire gray part of the Santa Fe ripoff hinges upward! All these design decisions made by Enlighten seem completely silly. They are not realistic and they don't add anything to the play value.

The only rolling stock that looks marginally interesting to me are the closed 'freight car' and the 'mine car' (hopper). These are complete ripoffs of Lego models, but they are so cheap that it might actually be possible to built a goods train with a number of identical cars.

Folks, I am impressed and a little excited, particularly regarding the report of frogstudio and the above message.

Rip-offs or not, who on earth really cares about that? Honestly, this is a free world, at least that's what I heard. IF that stuff is as good as reported: OK, TLC invented it. OK, I am willing to pay considerable amounts of money just because of that - hey they were the only ones in the past! But be careful: If somebody is making comparable stuff at "unreasonable" low prices, who is riping off whom? Oh yes, TLC did all the development, and oh yes their stuff is BRILLIANT! But hearing that clutc is not that bad and hearing that some folks are not just trashing it because there is no TLC stamp on it - hey come on.

TLC discontinued 9V because of revenue. NO OTHER freaking reason. TLC discontinues whatever they want for that reason. Because they are a globally operating power player. We are building according to their rules - never use what has not been approved.

If TLC's stuff is superior, yes, I shall obey the rules. I give you one hint in the other direction: 10V wall wart power supplys for the LiPo selling for 25 Euros. That is an insult. The 10V were a lie, the 25 Euros were 20 Euros too much. The Dragon Empire have them for Euro 5 and they work very well. It makes me think.

Once again: If quality and inspiration is at top: I am in. When patents run out: Do something exciting and novel. I am in again. But if 9V track is converted to all-plastic crap selling at close to 9V prices, it's creeping into me.

OK, kill me, I am ready.

Rock on ,
Thorsten

Edited by Toastie, 09 October 2010 - 12:21 AM.


#20 MetroiD

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Posted 10 October 2010 - 12:57 PM

View PostToastie, on 09 October 2010 - 12:19 AM, said:

But be careful: If somebody is making comparable stuff at "unreasonable" low prices, who is riping off whom?
Enlighten are ripping off LEGO. And their customers. LEGO - in terms of intellectual and industrial property, regulations and legislation for both of which are in place on a global scale. Most of these Chinese bootlegs should not even be in existence, but they do end up showing up all over the world instead. What does that tell you about Enlighten & the likes obeying laws and regulations?

That said, personally I must admit I have absolutely no problem with them flooding the market. My issue is with the quality of their stuff, because yes, I too have seen and felt what Enlighten bricks and sets feel and look like. And even putting aside my worries regarding the chemical elements contained in that plastic/ dye, etc. (refer to my law + regulation obeying comment above), I must say that these bricks are far from being as impressive as some of you make them sound. Yes, they probably might make a nice replacement, but they also hurt your hands when building with them, can easily scratch you (some toy, huh!), and are on the brittle side too, especially after having been placed under direct sunlight.

Not to mention the fact that many parents buy such sets and their kids grow up actually believing that "that stuff that just doesn't work right" actually is LEGO - at least in my country. Unfair competition, anyone?

Quote

Once again: If quality and inspiration is at top: I am in. When patents run out: Do something exciting and novel. I am in again. But if 9V track is converted to all-plastic crap selling at close to 9V prices, it's creeping into me.
Let me just remind you that this whole thread is about Enlighten not actually selling / producing anything remotely close to 9V either. So... yeah, you can buy those train models. And yeah, then you'll end up torturing both the badly-molded train wheels and (probably) the Enlighten rails by actually powering those trains, but that's your choice.

Another choice you could easily make is to ignore PF altogether, buy some bricks off Bricklink, find some old 9V rails on eBay and build the trains you'd like. It would end up costing a bit more than Enlighten, but at least it would actually run properly. In any case, it's your choice, so I don't see why bashing TLC is required here. Whatever you choose, play well and have fun  :sweet:
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#21 Buddha Bricks

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Posted 10 October 2010 - 04:58 PM

View PostMetroiD, on 10 October 2010 - 12:57 PM, said:

In any case, it's your choice, so I don't see why bashing TLC is required here
Here on eurobricks? Nooo that's impossible... In all regards, being for or againts bootlegs, we can't ignore the fact that the original conceptions come those minds in Denmark.

I'm pretty sure we all love TLG for the same reasons.

#22 Lord Insanity

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 03:09 AM

I was able to pick up the Union Pacific loco for around $20 US. While very similar in appearance to Lego's BNSF it is a very different design. The main body uses jumper plates to make it 5 wide for starters. The clutch power of the bricks is generally equal to Lego. The plastic is a little below Lego. (basically its the "cheap" plastic Lego has been using for some things recently) The wheels have the same friction problem that a batch of Lego's did around the My Own Train release period. They can be largely fixed the same way as Lego's were, by sanding a little where the wheel rubs on the wheelbase. Some parts do have sharp points on the studs from the mold injection points, this is the biggest quality issue against them. You have to be careful as these sharp points can potentially cut you. For a young child this is unacceptable, for an adult who knows it is a minor annoyance to build around. The best thing is the printed parts are good quality printed parts not crappy stickers like Lego has been using on most things recently. I would say for an adult that knows to be careful with the potentially sharp points these are the best clones you can get quality wise. I don't regret buying the Union Pacific loco at all. Now I have a reason to buy the new Lego cargo train with that weird looking engine that looks nothing like any real engine I have ever seen.  :wink:

#23 Toastie

Toastie

  • Good Spirited


    Posts: 296
    Joined: 27-July 10
    Member: 12260
    Country: Germany

Posted 11 October 2010 - 11:50 PM

Hehe, I saw that one coming, guess this thread may go ballistic ... Posted Image

OK, first things first:

I pledge allegiance to TLC and to their ideas, their creativity, the way they form communities, the more-than-fantastic brick, this list is endless. I really do. I don't know how much time I have spent playing with LEGOs, have thought about solutions, and it was worth every single minute. I did when I was three and ten years old, I am doing it now, at age 48.    

I don't have any other plastic building blocks other than LEGO bricks in my house; and chances are, there never will be.

TLC has invented the brick, they shall get all the credit.

And I REALLY mean all that.


But lets not just put us and TLC in the center of the world:

I am lucky enough that I can afford this extremely high-priced toy - therefore I simply expect that the bricks do behave as they do: Superior. There are people around the world that may not be as lucky as me though. I am traveling from time to time to Bangladesh - these folks are very, very happy that these dirt cheap plastic bricks even exist. You won't believe what they pay for this stuff; it becomes very clear that Enlighten must make a HUGE amount of revenue in Western Worlds! LEGO is not even on the market over there.

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Enlighten are ripping off LEGO. And their customers.
Hmm. See above. Principally, you are right. But TLC has turned into a globally operating high-power player. At thatr point you should not rely on 30 years old patents. None of comparable companies do (SONY, BMW, BASF ...).

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LEGO - in terms of intellectual and industrial property, regulations and legislation for both of which are in place on a global scale.  
Yes, true again. But lets face reality; patents do have a lifetime. 30 years of protection may also lead to some sort of "ebony tower" tinking ... once again MAY!  Here is a link, there a millions more about this topic. Here we go: Introducing "Bley" ... and not telling people before. I have at least 4 different shades of red on my red bricks. Apparently they were made in China, and they screwed up over there ... Posted Image ... we can go on with this list.


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And even putting aside my worries regarding the chemical elements contained in that plastic/ dye, etc. (refer to my law + regulation obeying comment above), I must say that these bricks are far from being as impressive as some of you make them sound. Yes, they probably might make a nice replacement, but they also hurt your hands when building with them, can easily scratch you (some toy, huh!), and are on the brittle side too, especially after having been placed under direct sunlight.
Posted Image Well I am with you. Particularly with the bad chemicals being present in most of the Dragon Empires plastic. I was solely talking about my choice of maybe considering such bricks (for me only dirt cheap track counts) - I am a chemist as well, and yes, this is the most concerning topic. I would not eat the stuff, would not put in my mouth, would probably careful when scratching begins. We should ease-up at least a little though - how many tons Dragon Empire Plastic do we all have in the house? A shitload ... (this is an adult forum, right?Posted Image )  

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Not to mention the fact that many parents buy such sets and their kids grow up actually believing that "that stuff that just doesn't work right" actually is LEGO - at least in my country. Unfair competition, anyone?

Ever driven a Mercedes Benz, top class? I never have but when we would compare "cars" - it may get into an unfair competition, particularly when looking at my uhmm car ... Posted Image

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Let me just remind you that this whole thread is about Enlighten not actually selling / producing anything remotely close to 9V either. So... yeah, you can buy those train models. And yeah, then you'll end up torturing both the badly-molded train wheels and (probably) the Enlighten rails by actually powering those trains, but that's your choice.
No, not me. I don't want to live with all the problems, I want superiour quality - I am paying for.

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Whatever you choose, play well and have fun  Posted Image
Citation: "The choice has been made - Oh no, I didnt choose anything, did you - ..." yes, from the GhostBusters movie, my all time favorite. I have so many pieces of LEGO in the house - I can't possibly count them. There are about ten LEGO trains running through my office, all the real thing. By the way, I have motorized Ben Benekes BR23 (not the "pushing" approach, all powered from the engine(!) - can't wait to show it off, but I need ot order some individual bricks from TLC (THAT was novel) ...

Summary:
You are right. Bashing TLC? No. High priced = high quality. Low price = maybe crap. We are grown-up and should make our choices. I have outlined my above. Other may very well go another route and be very happy as well.

Finally:
I very much liked your comments - it was fun to reply!Posted Image That's is the main reason I stick aroud this forum.

Rock on,
Thorsten



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