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Bringing back Monorail.


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#1 splatman

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 07:35 AM

There's Monorail (MR) talk elsewhere in the Embassy and elsewhere on EB, but I thought a topic focusing solely on MR would be in order.
Specifically, about asking TLG to bring back MR.
TLG may have said they're not doing MR again, but they said the same about other things, and did bring them back. A recent example is the #10152 Maersk Sealand ship.

The idea here is, if we ask TLG enough, we'll start seeing MR on shelves again.
Send them emails, snail-mail, tell them you want MRs whenever they ask for input for future sets, gather signatures at brickshows where MRs are displayed, etc. How many people have visited a brickshow and said "I didn't know LEGO made Monorails."?

TLG said (or so I've read; CMIIR), is that the machine used to assemble the motors, reached the end of its life (or was retired), so that sounded the death knell for MR. The long straight track mold has been concreted. Suppliers have gone out of biz. Sounds like excuses, IMO. They replace worn out machines and molds and switch suppliers all the time.

The PF XL motor would be perfect for powering a MR train. The only special parts needed would be the motor base, and, of course, the car bases. Or just have bogeys for the cars, like there already is for the trains, and brick-build the cars from the base up.
The ends of the motor base would have studs, to which towball (3183 and 3184) plates can be attached to link the cars to the motor base. Or the motor base would have towball sockets molded in. This also easily allows multiple cars to be linked together, just like a railroad train. Brick-building the cars (from the base up) opens more possibilities for building cars of different widths and lengths.

The tracks:
-Add a slope piece that goes in between the ramp sections, to make a higher ramp. 16-studs long and 5 bricks high. Use 2 to make a double-high ramp.
-Make curve tracks 1/8-circle, so diagonal track is possible. Update the switch points accordingly. Add a larger radius 1/16-circle curve track that equals the RR curve track's radius. Maybe even skip the smaller-radius track for now.
-Add a Y-switch track.
The above can wait until a year or 2, after the MR theme as a whole picks up steam in the market. Start with the basics; add the whistles and bells later.

MR Sets:
Instead of large, complex sets like the Airport Shuttle, do it the same way as the RR trains: MR trains sold by themselves as sets, maybe including a simple loop of track. Track would also be sold separately, but not as expansion packs. If straights and curves must be sold together, include at least 2 straights for each curve.
Stations, level crossings, etc., as separate sets. Maybe even the RR station set, etc., would include instructions to build/convert for MR use, eliminating separate sets for RR and MR.

Now, people, let's get this ball rolling!

#2 I Scream Clone

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 07:48 AM

Well if this is a petition you get my vote! Some nice ideas to allow more modification of track design as well. :thumbup:

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#3 Mythos

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 07:54 AM

I vote for bringing back monorail.

#4 freakwave

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 08:29 AM

View Postsplatman, on 30 June 2011 - 07:35 AM, said:

There's Monorail (MR) talk elsewhere in the Embassy and elsewhere on EB, but I thought a topic focusing solely on MR would be in order.
Specifically, about asking TLG to bring back MR.
I completely second this! I just bought my first train base two days ago! :classic:

View Postsplatman, on 30 June 2011 - 07:35 AM, said:

TLG said (or so I've read; CMIIR), is that the machine used to assemble the motors, reached the end of its life (or was retired), so that sounded the death knell for MR. The long straight track mold has been concreted. Suppliers have gone out of biz. Sounds like excuses, IMO. They replace worn out machines and molds and switch suppliers all the time.
EOL for the machine? How long did they produce the MR? Was not too long IMHO to make such a machine go to EOL, and there is always a happy supplier to make another one for you. Same for the mould, it's digital copy should still be around :wink:

View Postsplatman, on 30 June 2011 - 07:35 AM, said:

The PF XL motor would be perfect for powering a MR train. The only special parts needed would be the motor base, and, of course, the car bases. Or just have bogeys for the cars, like there already is for the trains, and brick-build the cars from the base up.
The XL would be too big in my opinion, the M is a better choice, it let's you build the traditional 4-wide, but also a 6-wide one. The MRs would not be too heavy to pull. Alternatively you can leave the choice to the user/builder by supplying a proper motor-base, i.e. a base that has a small gear (to run on the track) with a standard axle so you can decide by yourself how to drive it.
AND PF has the IR receiver! Remote control your MR. There are MOCs around which incorporate the mindstorms to control the MR (I think they use the HiTechnic IR interface) Great possibilities!

View Postsplatman, on 30 June 2011 - 07:35 AM, said:

The tracks:
-Add a slope piece that goes in between the ramp sections, to make a higher ramp. 16-studs long and 5 bricks high. Use 2 to make a double-high ramp.
-Make curve tracks 1/8-circle, so diagonal track is possible. Update the switch points accordingly. Add a larger radius 1/16-circle curve track that equals the RR curve track's radius. Maybe even skip the smaller-radius track for now.
-Add a Y-switch track.
The above can wait until a year or 2, after the MR theme as a whole picks up steam in the market. Start with the basics; add the whistles and bells later.
- More ramp flexibility: :thumbup:
- 1/8 Circle::thumbup: (a they are today, the part has an insane price tag...)
MR at that time was designed to fit to the grid (connection point for the supports) If you make too many curves, smaller angles etc. it would be difficult do design connection points that easily fit the grid.

View Postsplatman, on 30 June 2011 - 07:35 AM, said:

Now, people, let's get this ball rolling!
:thumbup:

#5 fred67

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 02:55 PM

Yes... this is one of the most interesting threads I've seen in a while, courtesy of DLuders.

There's no reason they need any specialty pieces to build the vehicle itself.  The only thing that TLG could add to this is dedicated track, and that "the mold broke" is a lame excuse if there's demand for it.

#6 Aanchir

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 04:39 PM

View Postfred67, on 30 June 2011 - 02:55 PM, said:

Yes... this is one of the most interesting threads I've seen in a while, courtesy of DLuders.

There's no reason they need any specialty pieces to build the vehicle itself.  The only thing that TLG could add to this is dedicated track, and that "the mold broke" is a lame excuse if there's demand for it.
But who says there's demand for it? Specifically, demand for the original style of track? Frankly, there's no reason anyone who wasn't a fan in the 90s would even know much about the old tracks, much less want them back. The older tracks scarcely resemble a typical monorail track, and so there's no huge reason why they'd be the ideal form a new monorail set would use.

It'd be cool if TLG made new monorail sets, but of course there are other factors. For starters, monorails really aren't very prominent forms of transportation. Personally, I had never heard of monorails until I first saw the LEGO monorail track. Also, monorails may no longer have the same applications in Space sets since they are no longer considered such an ideal, futuristic style of transportation. Since Space sets were some of their primary uses in LEGO, without that they could have limited uses-- and thus be a riskier investment than more familiar transportation styles like trains and buses.

LEGO monorail track has a wide fan-following in the AFOL community, but frankly I am not convinced that there is a broad enough appeal to make it successful. And even if there were, the idea that this is justification for bringing back the old-style monorail track is pretty silly.

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#7 davee123

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 05:22 PM

Yeah, I have to agree with Aanchir's point about demand-- AFOLs might want monorail, but beyond that, I'm not sure kids and parents would jump on it with the same enthusiasm.

Monorail track elements would be difficult.  If all we needed was (say) the 8-long straight track, I could see them possibly bringing the element out of retirement if it could be worked into a set somehow. But there's a lot more than that in order to make a functioning monorail:

- 8-stud long track: This mold should be pretty reasonable to bring back.
- half-curve left: This wouldn't be too difficult of a mold, other than the fact that it's a bit large.
- half-curve right: Ditto above
- 32-stud long track: This is a pretty large element, which I believe gets pricier.
- full-curve: Again, large element, even bigger.
- ramp top: Another large element.
- ramp bottom: Another large element.
- start/stop: I'm not sure how many individual molds are needed for this element-- I'd guess a minimum of 5 molded parts (probably more), plus assembly! Expensive!
- left switch track: again, a lot of separate molds, and assembly! Plus the individual molds are bigger than the stopper.
- right switch track: same as left switch
- Monorail base end: this has quite a bit-- I think it's something like 9 pieces (2 of which are metal axles?), with assembly required.
- Monorail central hub: this is by far the most expensive, thanks to the motor. In addition to the motor unit, you've got... 4? other parts which are again assembled.

On top of that, the new monorail would be in the NEW gray color (or something else entirely), which decreases the desirability for AFOLs, and also brings back the old 9v system which they've abandoned in favor of the new PF system.

So... I'm thinking it's not happening. We all heard how expensive it was to make ONE new part for AFOLs in the Emerald Night (actually, it was 1 mold, 2 different parts). I can't imagine that they would go through the hassle of tooling 25-30 elements (many of them large), doing the assembly required on those elements, AND bringing back the old motor system, ALL because of AFOL demand. The demand just isn't there to offset the cost.

BUT! With that said, there's no reason I can see that they wouldn't make a new SIMILAR system if it appealed to kids. That I could see them doing-- it just wouldn't be compatible with the old monorail.

DaveE

Edited by davee123, 30 June 2011 - 07:41 PM.


#8 CP5670

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 06:17 PM

I recall someone at TLG saying that the old monorail sets simply weren't profitable enough to continue producing. The other things are just excuses, as people have said. That was despite the fact that the old monorails were the most expensive Lego sets at their time, and would cost much more today with inflation.

If they did introduce monorails again, I would actually prefer to see an entirely new system. As davee said, any new monorail tracks would be in the new gray and wouldn't go together with the old tracks anyway, and as much I like the old system, it does have its issues.  The train design with two cars is quite limited and hard to extend, and the system only allows trains to be started/stopped at the switch points.

The main thing I like about the monorail system are the ramp tracks, which allow you to easily spread the track out in all 3 dimensions. That opens up tons of possibilities that we don't have with regular trains.

#9 Joebot

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 08:36 PM

My Airport Shuttle ie easily my most prized possession in my Lego collection. I traded a bunch of old Castle sets to some dude on rec.toys.lego back in the Internet olden days to get it, and I've never once regretted that decision. Whenever anyone sees my Lego town for the first time, the monorail is ALWAYS the first thing they comment on.

But ... as much as I love my monorail ... I don't see TLC ever bringing them back. At least not in its previous form. The financial reality probably makes that impossible.

So, then the question is, let's say that TLC comes out with some slick NEW monorail system that is incompatible with the old system. Is that something that AFOLs would embrace? I'm honestly not sure how I would feel about that.

#10 davee123

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 08:59 PM

View PostJoebot, on 30 June 2011 - 08:36 PM, said:

the question is, let's say that TLC comes out with some slick NEW monorail system that is incompatible with the old system. Is that something that AFOLs would embrace?

Depends, I guess :)

I honestly love the monorail because it's an elevated rail, it's compact, it's very high quality (friction is WAY down), and of course, it has nostalgia value.  But the monorail wasn't overly flexible (only 1 large radius of curve, and 1 increment of height variation), and I'm not sure how much life or power you get out of a 9v battery (I've never tried to overload my monorail to the point where it won't go uphill).

If LEGO came out with a new elevated rail, I could see getting into it if it were compact enough and high-quality enough.  I can imagine a lot of selling points that could make for a BETTER monorail:

- More flexibility in the track geometry
- Remote controlled
- Multiple speeds
- More flexible car size
- Integration of PF and/or NXT

If they put the right effort into the system, it COULD totally eclipse the desire for the old monorail in every way (except for the nostalgia factor, of course). I'm getting all worked up just thinking about it!

DaveE

#11 roamingstudio

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 09:37 PM

The solution presented (via Dluders) is pretty nifty and would definitely get my vote - both in Embassy and in Caruuso (if only the English version was possible).

When 9V track was produced, it broke the rules with existing 12V / 4.5V track; but still people loved it (because of shinny metal tops). With the RC track it seems that the mould was only changed slightly, so it could interconnect with the 9V... but not going back to the older 12V / 4.5V. The same rules could easily apply tor monorail, much to the discontent of (some) AFOLs...

A regular lookof the Train Tech forum shows that actually most people are happy with the more modern track style (albeit no shinny tops, no wider radius etc, but ME Models will solve that), and some aficionado's clearly enjoy running their old 12V / 4.5V models at the same time. There is room for both.

#12 splatman

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 09:46 PM

View Postdavee123, on 30 June 2011 - 05:22 PM, said:

Yeah, I have to agree with Aanchir's point about demand-- AFOLs might want monorail, but beyond that, I'm not sure kids and parents would jump on it with the same enthusiasm.

Monorail track elements would be difficult.  If all we needed was (say) the 8-long straight track, I could see them possibly bringing the element out of retirement if it could be worked into a set somehow. But there's a lot more than that in order to make a functioning monorail:
(snip)
- start/stop: I'm not sure how many individual molds are needed for this element-- I'd guess a minimum of 5 molded parts (probably more), plus assembly! Expensive!
- left switch track: again, a lot of separate molds, and assembly! Plus the individual molds are bigger than the stopper.
- right switch track: same as left switch
- Monorail base end: this has quite a bit-- I think it's something like 9 pieces (2 of which are metal axles?), with assembly required.
- Monorail central hub: this is by far the most expensive, thanks to the motor. In addition to the motor unit, you've got... 4? other parts which are again assembled.

On top of that, the new monorail would be in the NEW gray color (or something else entirely), which decreases the desirability for AFOLs, and also brings back the old 9v system which they've abandoned in favor of the new PF system.

So... I'm thinking it's not happening. We all heard how expensive it was to make ONE new part for AFOLs in the Emerald Night (actually, it was 1 mold, 2 different parts). I can't imagine that they would go through the hassle of tooling 25-30 elements (many of them large), doing the assembly required on those elements, AND bringing back the old motor system, ALL because of AFOL demand. The demand just isn't there to offset the cost.

BUT! With that said, there's no reason I can see that they wouldn't make a new SIMILAR system if it appealed to kids. That I could see them doing-- it just wouldn't be compatible with the old monorail.

DaveE

The start/stop (aka Monoswitch): This can be replaced with a small sensor-trip device that can be placed anywhere alongside the track. The motor hub would have a corresponding sensor. The PF IR Remote would be used to start the train, as well as start and stop the train anywhere.
The car bases would be left out, using only the bogies with wheels as specialized parts, allowing the cars to be brick-built from the start, much like RR train cars.

I understand the L and R switch tracks being large expensive assemblies. Those can be left out until the the MR theme gains market traction, like I said in the OP, just like the other track configurations I suggested.

And I wouldn't ever ask TLG to bring back any old electric system. That's what PF is for.

All in new gray: Understood right from the start. Not every AFOL is not going to buy because of the blay thing. I own several meters of MR track, and I wouldn't care that all my new track will be blay. I'll either keep the gray and blay track in separate "districts", or alternate my gray and blay track pieces for a checkered effect. Maybe TLG should make new MR track in another color entirely. Black track, anyone?

View PostCP5670, on 30 June 2011 - 06:17 PM, said:

I recall someone at TLG saying that the old monorail sets simply weren't profitable enough to continue producing. The other things are just excuses, as people have said. That was despite the fact that the old monorails were the most expensive Lego sets at their time, and would cost much more today with inflation.

If they did introduce monorails again, I would actually prefer to see an entirely new system. As davee said, any new monorail tracks would be in the new gray and wouldn't go together with the old tracks anyway, and as much I like the old system, it does have its issues.  The train design with two cars is quite limited and hard to extend, and the system only allows trains to be started/stopped at the switch points.

The main thing I like about the monorail system are the ramp tracks, which allow you to easily spread the track out in all 3 dimensions. That opens up tons of possibilities that we don't have with regular trains.

Probably the reason they weren't profitable, was because the sets were real expensive. I don't remember what I did to get my parents to buy me the Airport Shuttle set for my birthday, but it did translate into no LEGO sets under the C-mas tree that year. A week or so after my birthday, however, my mom thought I should have some switch tracks, so she bought me the AS expansion pack.

If the sets had only the train and some track, they would've sold more units. The stations, like I said in my OP, would be sold separately. Those who couldn't afford them after buying the main MR set would MOC their own.

About extending the cars: See my OP about using towball pieces.

Considering what Freakwave said, I must've not been clear when I mentioned using a PF motor in the motor base/hub. The hub would have pin sockets for fastening either the M or XL motor with technic pins, and a + axle (or + axle socket, in which a 2L + axle is inserted), to connect with the motor.

I forgot to mention in the OP: Use 1x4 tiles, not plates, to connect the track pieces, for better aesthetics.

All in all, by no means did I suggest or support redoing MR exactly as before, but instead, update it with PF and more.
The only thing that would need to be compatible with the old MR, is the track.

Scott.

#13 Nabii

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Posted 30 June 2011 - 10:28 PM

Time for a hard truth: no monorail set EVER made money for TLG, I've been told that in fact they all lost money and had an incredibly low turn over. Why would TLG want to invest the cost of at least 5 molds (3 tracks, a chassis, and minimum of 1, probably more, on a motor- and a motor is itself a massive investment) and again try to build a theme around a hugely expensive set that most kids do not understand or want rather then in a new theme that will make money? They have tried three times and despite being pretty good sets it has failed each time.

Hard as it is for AFOLs to accept Monorail sucks as a toy, otherwise other toy companies would make monorails. I think it'll only ever come back as a LEGO set if in real life monorails replace trains and buses so kids understand what they are.

Sorry.

#14 Piranha

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Posted 01 July 2011 - 01:28 AM

I would like to see it return and add my name to the petition. Now of course it will probably be a new system which I think is reasonable with the suggestions mentioned. Which is fine with me, also how many of the old Monorail collectors have large amounts of track to get displaced, they would happily buy the new system, simply because we would be grateful to get a new Monorail.

Now about the popularity of Monorails as a transportation and not being futuristic I would strongly disagree with all of those statements. Now on the basis TLG could call it something different for example Maglev Train, albeit not actually using magnetic levitation but who cares really? Now Maglev's are being used currently and broadening in popualrity and is one of the forerunner ideas to improve ir replace trains, so why not make a Monorail LEGO set and call it a Maglev? Also at many airports worldwide we have" Airtrains" who doesn't like riding those? Now a Maglev is futuristic and could be used in a space theme. But I see the real use in City. Just imagine a redesign and updated Airport Shuttle sitting on a LEGO store shelf who wouldn't be drawn to it? Monorails are better than Trains, if trains sell so can Monorails, they have elevate track which has an extra "wow" factor, a great addition and IMHO would sell extremely well in todays market.

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#15 freakwave

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 12:33 AM

View Postdavee123, on 30 June 2011 - 05:22 PM, said:

On top of that, the new monorail would be in the NEW gray color (or something else entirely), which decreases the desirability for AFOLs, and also brings back the old 9v system which they've abandoned in favor of the new PF system.

View Postsplatman, on 30 June 2011 - 09:46 PM, said:

The start/stop (aka Monoswitch): This can be replaced with a small sensor-trip device that can be placed anywhere alongside the track. The motor hub would have a corresponding sensor. The PF IR Remote would be used to start the train, as well as start and stop the train anywhere.
...
And I wouldn't ever ask TLG to bring back any old electric system. That's what PF is for.
...
All in all, by no means did I suggest or support redoing MR exactly as before, but instead, update it with PF and more.

Adding PF to the current monorail is a swift thing, what you need is:
Here's a link to a Brickhelf Folder showing such a monorail.
Posted Image

I got my train base just a few days ago, so I did a rudementary PF Monorail with the PF-Speedcontrol, just works great!

Edited by freakwave, 03 July 2011 - 12:33 AM.


#16 splatman

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 01:16 AM

I've thought of the same thing since the reading the Red Cargo Train thread. With the PF Batter Box soon to be available in Red, I can PF my Airport Shuttle. Now, if only the IR Sensor also came in red. I guess I could improvise with red tape. The only other thing I'll need to buy, is the 9V-to-PF adapter cable.

#17 Seluryar

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 04:07 AM

i was lucky enough to have gotten 6991 for a christmas present one year.

if TLG were to reintroduce monorails, they should start from scratch, and give us an option to allow us to make track from existing lego parts to build monorail track while still selling switch tracks and stuff like that
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#18 Calanon

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 10:04 AM

When at the EB event in the call centre when we were giving suggestions, I asked for a monorail. You have my support, I'd love one.

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#19 fred67

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Posted 05 July 2011 - 04:38 PM

Well, this is all interesting, and we all seem to want monorail back.  The argument against (in defense of TLG's not doing monorails) seems to rely on the fact that the monorail specific pieces were expensive and ultimately not profitable...

But now we're in the PF age, and we already have seen many fans making perfectly fine brick-built sets.  Given the fact they wouldn't have to make a motor or any monorail engine/car specific parts, it doesn't seem like it would be such a stretch to offer us a monorail set.  What I think most of us would like to see is better track, but they could even do better than that and come out with new generic pieces (like larger radius macaroni pieces) instead of track specific to monorail.

The difficulty for us are things like switches, things that TLG could do for a relatively small investment.

#20 Si-MOCs

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Posted 07 July 2011 - 05:32 PM

There are a lot of good ideas in this thread for future possibility of the return of the monorail. Unfortunately I think it’s a far-far distant future.

As many have chimed in, the monorail was simply very unprofitable for TLG. Even with the advent of AFOLs fanbase that absolutely loves the monorail – its reintroduction would unlikely to be profitable (or more likely a greater risk than TLG is willing to make).

Some would argue that AFOL market sets do well – which I concede is true – but keep in mind when TLG put sets that are geared towards AFOL – they also ensure that they would also interest kids, which are their primary market still. Unfortunately I think the Monorail sets would fail the latter (or at least not in the quantities necessary for the set to turn a profit).

Now that’s not to say that it may never happen – look at the continuation of trains and their continual evolution – there obvious is interest by kids to have mass transit systems. But unfortunately I don’t foresee that extending to monorails for a extremely long period of time. I can only see TLG releasing such set in the far distant future when monorails (or as pointed out its variant: maglev) trains are commonly used around the entire world – as TLG is a global brand trying to satisfy the needs of kids everywhere.

Also with regards to the OP’s original comment about the return of the beloved Maersk set, it wasn’t the AFOL community’s petitions, or a wondrous gift that TLG decided to bestow upon us, it was Maersk that wanted its return. Sadly I don’t know of any Monorail companies that would likely want to step up to the plate  :look:

Edited by SI-mocs, 07 July 2011 - 05:35 PM.

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#21 Piranha

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 12:20 AM

I thought it worth mentioning that in the concept artwork for a fans choice set for TRU, the options were a Truck Stop, City Square or a Public Transport System/Center. In the Public Transport artwork there was a throwback of Airport Shuttle and clearly showed a train or monorail on elevated track. Now this got everyone's hopes up that perhaps if it won we would get a new monorail system, that is what I surely thought. What was the result? The Public Transport Center won the voting, but we didn't get a new Monorail. Now the set TLG did produce has its merits but I feel sad they didn't do a Monorail. It makes you think, that had in the concept artwork a monorail had not been featured, what would have been the outcome? I for myself would have picked the City square. What I am trying to say is that the monorail in the concept art I believe was the reason why the Public City Transport won and that it is still very popular among not only fans but the general public.

As to regard to profitability I would just like to say that can be counted as old data from the past and not really relevant for today's market.

Edited by Macoco, 08 July 2011 - 12:23 AM.

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#22 Blondie-Wan

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 03:02 PM

View PostMacoco, on 08 July 2011 - 12:20 AM, said:

I thought it worth mentioning that in the concept artwork for a fans choice set for TRU, the options were a Truck Stop, City Square or a Public Transport System/Center. In the Public Transport artwork there was a throwback of Airport Shuttle and clearly showed a train or monorail on elevated track. Now this got everyone's hopes up that perhaps if it won we would get a new monorail system, that is what I surely thought. What was the result? The Public Transport Center won the voting, but we didn't get a new Monorail. Now the set TLG did produce has its merits but I feel sad they didn't do a Monorail. It makes you think, that had in the concept artwork a monorail had not been featured, what would have been the outcome? I for myself would have picked the City square. What I am trying to say is that the monorail in the concept art I believe was the reason why the Public City Transport won and that it is still very popular among not only fans but the general public.

I believe you're right. I do know I personally voted for the Public Transport Center in that poll, specifically because that artwork led me to think the set might have a monorail. That said...

View PostMacoco, on 08 July 2011 - 12:20 AM, said:

As to regard to profitability I would just like to say that can be counted as old data from the past and not really relevant for today's market.

Possibly; I don't know that any of us outside TLG can really know. They certainly do make sets for the AFOL market now that they never did in the old days, and while part of this is surely them understanding their fanbase better (i.e., just knowing now that they do have a lot of adult fans), I think they may also actually have more adult fans than they used to. But even if so, would that be enough to warrant investing in a lot of expensive molds for a whole system of elements they haven't made in a while? I'd love to think so, but I also think Aanchir's reasoning here is sound, though I certainly hope he's wrong.

I will note that if / when monorails become more prevalent in real-world, everyday life, it'll surely help motivated TLG to bring them back (albeit not necessarily in a form compatible with the old system)...

#23 fred67

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Posted 08 July 2011 - 05:20 PM

View PostBlondie-Wan, on 08 July 2011 - 03:02 PM, said:

But even if so, would that be enough to warrant investing in a lot of expensive molds for a whole system of elements they haven't made in a while?
As I mentioned earlier, if you see the fan built monorails, they do it completely without any special parts.  That doesn't make it a good way to do it, but obviously no new parts would be needed to make the monorail itself - brick built with PF seems to work just fine.

The only thing would be track that might work better than brick built track, and they'd just need to start with straight and curves.  If the interest is there, they could add a switch.  Just because the old monorail could change elevation doesn't mean a new one would have to, but even that could come after they know if it's popular or not.  Since track would be roughly half the size of train track, they could make twice as much with the same size mold.

I get that people with old monorails might not be happy to not get new, compatible track, but if that's the way it has to be, then so be it.

But they wouldn't even have to make specific track pieces... if they made some new interesting bricks, instead (like longer macaroni pieces for curves... yes, I know, laughably large ones... maybe curved technic lift arms), they might not even have to make monorail specific pieces.

I'm not holding my breath, though - I'm duly inspired by what fans have created and have every intention of doing it myself anyway, but official sets tend to be a lot more cost effective (and often work better with pieces specifically designed for it), so it would just be nice to see.

#24 Piranha

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 12:17 AM

View PostBlondie-Wan, on 08 July 2011 - 03:02 PM, said:

I'd love to think so, but I also think Aanchir's reasoning here is sound, though I certainly hope he's wrong.
But hes a party pooper :laugh:

View Postfred67, on 08 July 2011 - 05:20 PM, said:

As I mentioned earlier, if you see the fan built monorails, they do it completely without any special parts. That doesn't make it a good way to do it, but obviously no new parts would be needed to make the monorail itself - brick built with PF seems to work just fine.

The only thing would be track that might work better than brick built track, and they'd just need to start with straight and curves. If the interest is there, they could add a switch. Just because the old monorail could change elevation doesn't mean a new one would have to, but even that could come after they know if it's popular or not. Since track would be roughly half the size of train track, they could make twice as much with the same size mold.

I get that people with old monorails might not be happy to not get new, compatible track, but if that's the way it has to be, then so be it.

But they wouldn't even have to make specific track pieces... if they made some new interesting bricks, instead (like longer macaroni pieces for curves... yes, I know, laughably large ones... maybe curved technic lift arms), they might not even have to make monorail specific pieces.

I'm not holding my breath, though - I'm duly inspired by what fans have created and have every intention of doing it myself anyway, but official sets tend to be a lot more cost effective (and often work better with pieces specifically designed for it), so it would just be nice to see.

Yes I agree with these statements, alot of the elements already exists to do a Monorail now, Power Functions I believe is a huge step forward because now Trains and other motorized sets can be all motorized using a compatible system. We have the XL Motor which can be used for a gear box, the battery pack, IR and Remote. Then it is simply a matter of doing the brickbuilt monorail which I think looks better than prefab anyway.

However there is one part I would like to see new molds and that is prefab new monorail track or similar to the old, it doesn't really matter, I just think prefab would look and be more functional like with the prefab train track.

That being said, at least a long straight, curve and the elevated ramp (because that is what really takes it "next level") :tongue: should be prefab.

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#25 Darth Vader

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Posted 09 July 2011 - 03:12 AM

At Brickfiesta last week, in Austin, Jim Foulds again expressed that 9V and Monorail were dead and not coming back. (He also said the same thing about Bionicle).



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