I have very fond memories of Lego Town from when I was little, I probably had more Town sets than I did Space or Castle, although most of my creations were a bizarre fusion of the three!
As a new AFOL now, my focus may be slightly different, but I have been buying a few City sets, partly due to the Collectable Minifigs which are City-themed in the main.
This is one I picked up on eBay fairly cheap new, although I actually regretted buying it afterwards (ah, eBay buyer's remorse, I'm sure most of us have been there!) so I thought it might make a good subject for my second Reviewers Academy review.
Set Name: Repair Truck (also known as “Lighting Repair”)
Set Number: 3179
Number of Pieces: 118
Price: USD 12.99, GBP 9.99, EUR 12.99
Year Released: 2010
LEGO Shop @ Home
My photo set on Flickr
We start with the very recognisable Lego City- blue-coloured box, with a good picture of the contents you can build inside.
The back shows our intrepid engineer man setting out fencing and going up in the crane. All in a day's work for him!
The side of the box shows off the accessories for the truck as well as the 1:1 look at the engineer.
IN THE BOX:
We get two bags, folded instructions, a sticker sheet, and two larger plates. Quite why they weren't in the bags I don't know.
The booklet was clear to follow, and has a lovely blue background. The colour differences weren't too bad, although as usual the grey and black pieces weren't always easy to work out.
Here is the sticker sheet, with some pretty nice stickers such as the “electrical hazard” ones and the yellow and black hazard lines.
Here is a pic of all the pieces jumbled together as they came out of the two bags. You can see from here that the minifig torso has no back printing. Boo!
Pieces of interest:
I don't expect a set like this would thrill any longtime Lego City fans, but I'm new enough to it all to be going “Oh, that's a cool windshield piece! And transparent fence piece!”. That is, if I talked to myself whilst building *shifty glances*
There are also some translucent pieces – always nice to get those – and the engineer guy's tools are stored in a big round ring sprue. Not seen that before.
Just the one minifig in this set, so he has to drive around AND fix the lights, though hopefully not at the same time!
I call him an engineer but this minifig is outfitted in the style of the Lego construction workers, with his orange overalls, blue trousers and red hard hat. The face has a smiling expression, with glasses. He's obviously a bit of a nerd who enjoys his job. As mentioned before, no back printing on this torso, which is a shame. Also no dual-expression, although I guess the reason for that is that you'd be able to see it on the back of his head, as the hard hat would not hide it.
Whilst we only get one minifig, the truck isn't the only thing to build in this set. First we have a lamppost on a small base plate, with a green recycling bin next to it. Obviously the truck needs a light to replace!
It's a very simple build (hence no pictures) but it does the job nicely.
You can see the size of it better when the engineer is also in shot.
After this little appetiser we then start on the truck itself. By step 8 the building of the truck chassis and cab has begun.
By step 15 the cab has been furnished with a steering wheel – in a somewhat bizarre blue colour - as well as having opening doors put in. These take me back to the classic Lego Town of my childhood. I am aware that not all recent City vehicles have been given doors, which is a real shame, so nice to see them here.
By step 27 the truck is taking shape, with the cab fully finished and the crane area being worked on. You can also see my terrible placement of the “electrical hazard” sticker, which is noticeably crooked!
By step 33, the truck is complete. It's a good size and the bright yellow colour pops at you. It's unfortunate that from this angle you can still make out the red brick which forms part of the chassis.
Extra pieces included a grey cheese slope and some translucent slopes and bricks. Yay!
Let's take a look at the set and its playability:
Our engineer man fits in the middle of the cab quite nicely. I'm sure you could get 2 minifigs in there if you really wanted to.
From this angle you can see the back of the truck, with the crane flanked by the two safety fences with the translucent orange lights. You can see how the connection point at the base of the crane allows it to spin freely 360 degrees around its axis.
There are also storage points for the engineer's tools on either side of the truck, as you can see in this pic and the one above this.
This side also has two cupboards with opening doors that hold more tools and spare lightbulbs for the lampposts.
Here is the full set, with the crane deployed and our fearless engineer ready to fix the lamppost. The safety fencing has been arrayed around the area.
A close-up shot of the engineer in his bucket. He stands in it securely and the crane itself hoists him up to a good height, level with the lamppost.
Design: 7/10 – This set does what it sets out to do very well. The truck itself is fairly big and colourful and with the addition of the lamppost there is some playability inherent in the set.
Parts: 7/10 - A good amount of parts for the price point, and some interesting ones to boot. Pieces like the windshield as well as the crane bucket are useful, as are the many translucent pieces in the set.
Build: 6/10 – A simple yet enjoyable build. The only clever techniques are seen on the front and back bumpers, with SNOT construction for the lights and number plates.
Minifigs: 5/10 – The downside to having a fair few parts to this set is that only one minifigure is included. I guess he is solid enough but without any other printing other than the torso he can't be considered to be very exciting. I know it's an easy thing to say but the set would have been much better with two minifigs, one to drive and one to go on the crane.
Playability: 7/10 – As mentioned, it's not like you have to go through your other City sets in the hope that one of them has a lamppost this guy can change the bulb on. We get one in the set. Instant playability, but sadly, not all that entertaining or exciting. Other City sets have police or firemen, or even people driving big diggers. Carnage could ensue with any of those. This guy, well, he changes lights.
Price: 7/10 – The value here isn't at all bad if we look at it in terms of price per piece and also in terms of how cool the pieces actually are, however, only having the single bog-standard construction worker minifig does hurt it a bit.
Total: 39/60 – A set that does what it's supposed to do, hence the very reasonable score here. This set is certainly a worthwhile addition to your City streets, but only if you have had your fill of the more exciting sets out there.
The engineer had been sadly misinformed. Sheik Amar did not, in fact, need his lights fixing. Or even know what lightbulbs were.
I hope you enjoyed this review; I would love constructive comments and feedback below.
Edited by Rumble Strike, 28 June 2011 - 11:13 PM.