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Everything posted by mostlytechnic

  1. Technic Heavy Duty Excavator Thanks to Lego and EB for this review set. Over the years, Lego has made LOTS of excavators. Bricklink lists 25 of them. There's City excavators on trailers. There's Duplo excavators for the little kids. There's even a Lego Dimensions tiny excavator from the Lego Movie. What we care about here though are the 9 previous Technic excavators. They range from 1984's pneumatic excavator to the massive 4000 piece Bucket Wheel Excavator in 2016. The new Excavator fits into the middle of the range, and below, I'll compare it to two of the older versions. Name: Heavy Duty Excavator Set Number: 42121 Pieces: 569 Price: $39.99 Minifigs: 0 Theme: Technic The Box Front There's some decent construction graphics in the foreground and background, but what is this pose? The set photo is taken with a wide angle lens from close range, so it's MASSIVELY distorted. The bucket appears to be almost as big as the rest of the machine. The Box Back The functions appear to be quite standard - rotation, rolling, and control of the arm in 2 locations. Check out that B-model though! Like the Hovercraft, this set has a GREAT looking alternate build. Sure, the arm is a similar function, but the rest of the vehicle looks great and completely different. I'm looking forward to trying it out when the instructions are released. The Box Top Remember what I said about the distorted front image 4 seconds ago? They used the bucket for the 1:1 sample on the top of the box! That really makes it hard to judge size for anyone not familiar with Lego and Technic in particular. The Contents 4 sets of bags, and I like that the tread links are in separate bags of their own! There's a couple extra in each, so you do still have to count (or just see what fits) but it's still nicer than having them all mixed in. The sticker sheet is nice and small. Also, there's not much yellow, which makes sense when you realize how much of the part volume goes into the arm and treads. The Build, Part 1 In an unusual move for Lego tracked vehicles, bag 1 doesn't start with the chassis. It starts at the other end and builds the arm. That's a great way to start off with the "interesting" parts. I also REALLY liked that it reaches a nice, functional point here. You can turn the two grey axle connectors and make the the arm function. That's useful to verify that you did it all right, and it gives the builder a chance to see how things work one section at a time. There are two mini-LAs here to move the arm. There's also a fake hydraulic cylinder on the end of the arm. It's made from an axle and connector, so it's all in light grey. Which made me wonder... why did Lego design the mini-LAs with the colors that they did? The piston part should be light grey and the outer body should be darker. I'm sure they did it this way to match the regular LAs, which have light grey body and a metal piston, but I'd prefer the colors be reversed. The Build, Part 2 Bag #2 adds the body of the excavator. Here's the bulk of the yellow parts, and it makes a decent shape. There's not a ton being hidden underneath. This is directly controlled - the knob on the back and one on the right side each drive a segment of the arm. The Build, Part 3 That is a lot of non-color in bag 3. Since there's no motorization or connection between the tracks and the body of the excavator, these are pretty simple. The Build, part 4 Bag 4 adds a few cosmetic parts and provides the 1x2 liiftarms and cones. I have to say, why both with the arms? They're nearly impossible to scoop up with the excavator. On the other hand, the controls on this set are easy to use and work well. It takes a reasonable amount of turns on the knobs to move the arm, and it's plenty easy for kids to use. The Driver? This is way smaller than minifig scale, but just look at that cabin! It is so well done. A big windscreen for visibility... a nice red seat... a couple control levers... and a decent panel. The Family I currently have the 42121 (2021, 569 pieces, $40), the 8294 (2008, 720 pieces, $60), and 8419 (2005, 286 pieces, $20). They all use essentially the same arm, with 2 movements (none of them have independent control of the bucket). The 42121 uses 2 knobs to directly control 2 mini-LAs. The 8294 has a single knob, run through a simple 2 position gearbox, to control two full-size LAs. 8491 uses two knobs on the rear, both driving worm gear setups, to move the arm via linkages instead of linear actuators. I find these a fascinating comparison. The first two are semi-close in part count, but 8294 is SO much bigger. I think that's due largely to simply using bigger pieces. It has fewer tread links, but it uses the large ones instead of the small ones. It has full-size LAs instead of mini. The liftarms making up the body and the arm are longer. The two yellow sets look so close in size from this angle, but are so different in part count and price. 42121 has a lot of parts used in cosmetics (the cab, a fully enclosed body, fake vents, etc). 8419 is old-school Technic. It's just an outline of the vehicle, not wasting pieces on decoration. It also used rubber tracks, saving 80+ pieces from the new version. The Reach From overhead, 42121 is clearly the mid-size of this group. It's also clearly a newer generation of Technic. Both the older sets are skeletal. The Ratings Design: 8 Build Experience: 9 Features: 7 Playability: 7 Parts/Value: 8 Overall: 8 As always, my ratings are based on the size and target market for the set. This is another nice 8+ Technic set. The build was easy but both looks and works well. This is a pretty good playable set, although I actually dinged it for including the 1x2 liftarms. They just don't work to scoop up. You have to hold them in place for the bucket to get them up. For some sets, having "material" makes sense - the cement mixer and the bucket excavator are great examples there. For these smaller sets, don't waste the piece count on that. If kids want to dig in Lego, they've probably got a box full of parts to dig in that'll work much better than a few pieces included here. Also, as usual, the tracks don't move if you're pushing it on a smooth surface (table, hard floor, etc). It needs to be on carpet for the tracks to work correctly. Despite those minor dings, I think this is a great set for its target market. This isn't meant to compete with the $100+ sets like the motorized 8043 or massive Bucket Wheel Excavator. This is a set kids will get and love. I particularly appreciate that the instructions start with building the arm and even call out to test the functionality before moving on to bag 2. That's a great user experience right there.
  2. mostlytechnic

    [REVIEW] 42121 Technic Heavy Duty Excavator

    I didn't feel like it was slow, compared to Technic sets I've built over the last 20 years. It felt pretty typical to me. And I agree, the rear knob being on the left would be easier to operate and more ergonomic, but I bet they didn't want to mess with the cosmetics on the left (vents, cabin, etc)
  3. Technic Rescue Hovercraft Thanks to Lego and EB for this review set. Over the years, Lego has made multiple hovercrafts. After all, there's only so many cars, spaceships, and fire trucks that kids need. There have been police and fire hovercrafts, but Technic has had 3: 1993's 193 piece single-person hovercraft. 2013 had another single person hovercraft, again in the <200 piece range. 2018 brought a 1000 piece, much larger set, both in literal size and in the design of the hovercraft it's representing. Now, in 2021, there is an in-between set, both in design and part count. Name: Rescue Hovercraft Set Number: 42120 Pieces: 457 Price: $29.99 Minifigs: 0 Theme: Technic The Box Front The never-ending battle between the graphic designer and the lawyer... one wants a dynamic shot of the toy racing across the water. The other doesn't want to get sued when kids' toys sink in the bathtub. Ok, fine, no one is going to sue over a non-floating toy (probably). But on the other hand, customer service doesn't want to deal with calls about stickers peeling after getting wet. More importantly, what is that in the bottom corner? There's a strange logo that I'd almost forgotten about. 2 in 1? THERE'S A B-MODEL? Yes, there is. (unfortunately, the instructions aren't online or in the app yet, so I'll have to add that later) The Box Back I'll cover the functions later, so I want to focus on the B-model here. That is a good looking small airplane! And it looks loaded with functions. I see a gear on the wheels, so that's probably going to spin the props when you roll it. There's also a knob on top of the plane, so I'm assuming that will move the flaps on the wings. Even the stickers don't seem terribly out of place - although this looks pretty small to be a "rescue" aircraft. The Box Top Technic sets love to use a wheel for the 1:1 size reference. Here, they got as close as possible and used the fan on the deck. Also, the lawyers now speak a lot of languages The Contents Pretty typical fare for this size set - 3 numbered bags, a small manual, and a sticker sheet. There are a few of the newer parts, but nothing that stood out. Lots of orange panels though! Often Technic sets have a few panels of the "visible" color and the bulk of the parts are grey/black. Since this is smaller, the ratio of external to internal is higher and so there's a lot of orange in here. The Build, Part 1 Bag 1 builds the core of the mechanisms. There is a pair of tiny wheels up front that handle the steering via the red liftarm linkage. There are a pair of wedge belt wheels that transmit motion to the vertical axles at the back. And do you see what those are? Lime? There haven't been lime wedge belt wheels since around 2012. Surely they didn't produce these in lime just for this set where they're not even visible, so I'm assuming there's something else in the 2021 lineup that will make more obvious use of them. Anyone know what? Also, the front has a single lime 3L pin with pinhole in lime. Those were produced for the big Lambo set, and now we have one appearing in a much smaller set. Again, it's going to get completely hidden, so it's just a secret bit of inside color. The Build, Part 2 Bag #2 completed the base of the hovercraft. There's some fairly complex building to get the clear/red/green "lights" at the nose. Then it builds the deck with its 2 or 3 seats. Later, that's going to be a bit of a pain to attach. There's so many connection points - 8 pins around the perimeter, more in the middle, and gearing for the steering. The Build, Part 3 Bag 3 completes the build with more cosmetics, all the stickers, and the rear fans. There's the answer to how many seats - it's 3, with the steering in the center seat position. The handlebar there does not move with the steering; it's just cosmetic. However, the steering knob on top DOES move both the hidden wheels underneath and rotates the fan pods at the back. Rolling the hovercraft spins the fans at the rear (NOT the front fan) and makes the blue lights on the roof rotate. That's a nice extra touch. The stickers clearly add a lot to the vehicle. I didn't find them hard to put on; there's not much you have to align between pieces. There is one part I don't like. The black hull is vertical at the front and back, but curves inward along the side. That's due to the selection of panels, but I think I'd prefer for the sides to be straight vertical as well. Having two different profiles looks odd - and clearly the designers agree, since they hid the sides with fake water on the front of the box. The Underside Not a lot to see here - most of it was already visible in the earlier build photos. This angle is clearly not meant to ever be seen. The Driver? Technically, you can fit a minifig in the seats. However, it's not really minifig scale. Sorry. The Rear The fans and the grey guards both spin as the hovercraft rolls. That's not accurate, but understandable given the scale. I appreciate the addition of a few cosmetic details - the antennae and life preserver fill in an otherwise empty area of deck. The Ratings Design: 8 Build Experience: 6 Features: 9 Playability: 7 Parts/Value: 8 Overall: 8 I really like this little set. It feels like a good Lego value - 450 parts for $30? That's not bad! It's also pretty decent size - big enough to play with and feels big enough to be a $30 Lego set. The part count isn't too inflated with tiny pieces. It has the basic features - steering and fans - but makes them a little extra complex. Lego calls this set an 8+, and that seems ok. Kids may need some help with marrying the deck to the hull, but overall, it's not an overly difficult build. And I'm really looking forward to the B model instructions being released. That looks like a great alternate build. I took off a little on the build experience - it's a pretty symmetrical model, so there's a lot of duplicate building (either identical fan housings, or mirrored sections). The one step is also a little tricky. As a kids toy though, it's nicely swooshable and fits the hand nicely.
  4. mostlytechnic

    [REVIEW] 42120 Technic Rescue Hovercraft

    Both are close to minifig, but then, Technic is never minifig scale. There hasn't ever been a Technic set in minifig scale - as close as this is, it'd look WAY out of place in a Lego City scene.
  5. mostlytechnic

    [REVIEW] 42121 Technic Heavy Duty Excavator

    I think a crane mod would be pretty easy indeed. You've already got the mini-LA to adjust the boom angle, and then use the second knob to drive a spool of string.
  6. mostlytechnic

    [REVIEW] 42120 Technic Rescue Hovercraft

    I agree on the rotating prop guards being a letdown. I was surprised by them - there's studs on the dish after all, but they covered them with a round tile! I think there just isn't a great way to connect the guard to the black bracket they're using for the right-angle gearing connection.
  7. mostlytechnic

    Diesel Train Filling Station

    You shouldn't be at all embarrassed for selling instructions - Lego does it every day for much smaller sets :) And this packs in SO MUCH more detail than a similar size official set. Seriously, this is a fantastic little scene and extremely well executed.
  8. Overall, I think the new road plates are great. I hope they come out with more add-on packs for bike lanes and sidewalks. And for kids, I think the road set including the streetlights, signs, etc is a big plus. That may be wasted parts for the AFOLs making huge layouts, but for the target market of kids, that's fantastic and doesn't add too much to the cost. On the city center, I'm not loving the overall look of the pizza/dojo building. I think the seeing-eye dog looks fantastic. I also love the mom/baby/bench/playground thing section. Again, cute, well made, and something different than the standard fire/police. On the skate park - overall, love it. I wish it didn't include the vehicle though. That seems like it doesn't fit and just increases the price. I'd rather not have it - there's TONS of similar vehicles out there. Not every set has to have a car!
  9. mostlytechnic

    Moved to New Server

    And I love the cover image you used on the FP - I have this set on my desk at work as my pen holder. Fun set :)
  10. Technic Jeep Wrangler Thanks to Lego and EB for this review set. EB has a team of reviewers working on all the new Technic sets, so keep your eyes out for a bunch of reviews in December! Over the years, Lego has produced quite a few sets called "Jeep." Among others, there was the 1968 Jeep: 1977 had a Jeep CJ-5: There was the 1997 "Open Top Jeep" that no one would say looks like a Jeep: 2010 brought a couple of green Jeeps in the Toy Story line. Now, in 2021, we have a MUCH larger Technic licensed Jeep model. The official announcement said "Designed to emulate the iconic look, design and legendary off-road capabilities of the actual vehicle, this first-ever LEGO model of a Jeep SUV – the LEGO Technic Jeep Wrangler is ready to face any epic adventure." That makes me believe the previous sets weren't licensed Jeeps. They were just using the term generically. The CJ-5 set is the only one that I can find that actually says "Jeep" on the box or manual. Name: Jeep Wrangler Set Number: 42122 Pieces: 665 Price: $49.99 (US) / €49.99 Minifigs: 0 Theme: Technic The Box Front It's... a Jeep. Clearly. With the set name, the logo in the corner, and the stickered Jeep and Rubicon logos on the vehicle, it's pretty clear this is a licensed Technic vehicle. It's a great box design though - it looks like something from a Jeep advertisement with the rocks and mountains and trees. It also hints at the functionality, since you can see the winch and the axle articulation. Unsurprisingly, they put quite a bit of thought and time into the box art. The Box Back It's a pretty standard Technic box back. Show another angle of the set, show the functions, and have a plain background. Here though we get a box with a small photo and stats of the real vehicle and a cute design twist with the winch pulling at another photo. Interesting that even though this is the European box, it still gives the stats in horsepower and pounds. No metric for Jeep I guess The Box Top The top of the box has the same stats (minus horsepower for some reason), but this time in a variety of languages and units. The Contents Just 5 bags (split into two groups), some tires, a manual, and small sticker sheet. The Prints There are only a couple printed parts - 2 of the 3x5 L liftarm and 5 of the 1x3 liftarm, all with the same print for making the trademark Jeep grill. I get why they'd want to make it that way, but I'd prefer they'd done it with thin liftarms and other parts to be actually three-dimensional. The New Panels This set includes a few new for 2021 Technic panels. There's the 3x7 panel (includes 3 in yellow and 1 in black) and 3 of the small 2x3 panel. I have no idea what the Bricklink naming will be for that panel, since it only has connectors along one edge, it's curved so that the other edge doesn't line up with anything, and the 3 connections it does have are all axle holes in 2 directions. The set also includes 5 new tires. It's a 56x26 tire with a tractor tread pattern. They're VERY offroad tires, not really a passenger vehicle tread, but they get the idea across. The Real Vehicle There's no Ideas-style intro section to the manual, but at the end, there's a single page of pictures of the real Jeep. The Contents Here's everything included in the set. The Build, Part 1 Like many Technic sets, we start by building the core of the vehicle. The steering system is partially in place, and we have the small turntables front and back (behind the seats) that will allow the axles to move. The Evil Stickers It's partially due to my large fingers (I'm 6'3", 275 lbs), but these seat stickers are possibly the worst stickers I've ever had to apply. They're on an inside curve, with the connection points making it even harder to reach. I probably should have gotten out tweezers to put them in place but I didn't. I totally get that the marketers at Jeep would want the cool seat stitching as part of the set, but what a pain to apply. The Build, Part 2 This is the end of the #1 bags. There's a lot of bodywork still to go on, but the core of the vehicle is done. There's functional steering, suspension, and a winch. The Front Detail Before we move on, here's a closeup of the front of the Jeep. The grill is in place. The headlights are there (although in front instead of properly recessed). I don't like the grey connectors at the top corners of the front end though. They've never made them in yellow, but even black would have been better IMHO. Also, the winch. Why? I can't find any reference on the Jeep website to a factory winch being even an option on the Wrangler Rubicon. I guess Lego wanted another function, but it's such a pain to do. Again, I've got big fingers, and I HATE anything using string from Lego. Getting the knots tied in the tiny string is a pain. That's honestly the one thing in the build that a kid would likely need help with. And it's not even a cool function here! You just turn the gear next to the reel with your finger to wind it back in. There's no mechanism involved. The Steering The steering mechanism is simple but effective. No gears involved. The Suspension There are two shocks in the rear, attached to pivoting liftarms. This doesn't allow for typical vertical suspension travel. Instead, this vehicle has pendular axles that can rotate side to side. The shocks keep the Jeep level unless it's being pressed to the side. The Angles The Lego designers worked to make some unique angles on this set. There are grey beams here through the engine compartment, whose sole purpose is to make the front grill lean slightly back instead of being vertical. There's another set of unusual connections done to give the "windshield" the slight angle they wanted. It's some interesting complexity in an otherwise pretty blocky model. The Build, Finished The #2 bags basically just put a body on the vehicle. There are some interesting design choices and a few things that make me wonder why they did it that way. The model includes a roof rack, which is not standard equipment. There is an option for one, but I haven't found a good picture of it yet. Look at the base of the windshield - why are those perpendicular connectors light grey? Why not black? Ditto for the ones in the roof rack. I know we're never going to convince Lego to give up on the blue pins, but why oh why are all the 3L pins with stop bush ORANGE in this set? Use the grey ones! No kids are going to get confused; there's no other grey 3L pins in the set. The Comparison Does this set really look like a Jeep? If it didn't have the stickers, and you showed it to a random person, would they think Jeep? Personally, I'd think Hummer before Jeep. It's not a BAD representation of a Wrangler, especially given the scale, but that scale made it lose most of the things that distinguish it from the boxier Hummer. The sides of the hood (where the Rubicon name is) aren't curved. The front end doesn't taper in to be narrower at the front. The roof feels too low (and I checked it - to be accurate to scale, the roof should be 1.5 studs higher than it is). The Side View There's one function that isn't mentioned in the manual at all, but works fine. The back seat folds down if you want to have cargo space in the rear. Super simple, but super effective. There is a surprising issue visible from the side though. The doors do not go all the way down! There's a full stud of space between the bottom of the door and the black base of the Jeep. There's not an easy fix though. It needs a 6L liftarm, which Lego doesn't make. The easiest fix would be using a pair of the 1x6 thin liftarms on each door. Once upon a time, that would have cost a fortune, since the Power Puller in 2000 was the only set to include that part in yellow until it came back into a bunch of sets starting in 2014. Now they're just a dime each. The Underside From the bottom, there's some definite color issues. The red and blue liftarms aren't hugely noticeable from the top, but they're in full view underneath. This also shows the simplicity of the functions - there's no differentials, no "engine," no axles running the length of the vehicle for some feature. The Axles The pendular axles are designed to make this model very "off-road" feeling. The front axle can twist enough to sit on the spare tire while the vehicle stays flat. If you do that in the rear, the Jeep sits at an angle, but still, all 4 wheels are on the ground. The Steering This set uses a simple gear in the back seat area for hand-of-God steering. It works well enough, except it barely turns. The front wheels here are at full steering lock. This small toy feels like it has the same turning radius as the real thing! The Ratings Design: 6 Build Experience: 6 Features: 4 Playability: 7 Parts/Value: 6 Overall: 6. You have to keep in mind though, what is the target audience? I was pretty critical in the sections above, because I was looking at it from the perspective of an adult. This is not meant to compete with the Lambo and Bugatti as a shelf decoration. It's a much smaller set, for a younger owner. This set is a toy, first and foremost. It's ruggedly built. I tried dropping it, rolling it over, and being rough with it. Nothing fell off. This set is ready for kids to take it outside, drive it through the dirt, and treat it like a toy. On a pile of rocks, it's right at home. To me, it doesn't have the features to be a fun Technic model nor the looks to be a visual model. For a kid, it's fantastic as a toy.
  11. Technic Ferrari 488 GTE AF Corse #51 Thanks to Lego and EB for this review set. EB has a team of reviewers working on all the new Technic sets, so keep your eyes out for a bunch of reviews in December! Lego has produced a number of Ferrari cars and sets... around 50 of them over the last 20+ years. All but a couple are red (no surprise there) and many of them are race cars. In fact, almost all of them are under the Racers sub-theme, even though there's a mix of system and Technic builds. 1997 had a Shell-sponsored race car. In 2004 even Duplo got in on the Ferrari race action. 2005 brought the 1:10 scale Enzo. It was labeled Racers on the box, even though it's clearly a Technic vehicle. 2006 had another Racers-labeled Technic set, this time a 1:8 scale F1 race car. 2007 continued the pattern, but went back to the street vehicles for a 599 GTB. 2007 didn't ignore the Ferrari racing teams though, releasing a system-style F1 Team set. The 20-teens brought a range of Ferraris under the Speed Champions banner. And then 2021 brings the largest set by piece count, and the only one ever officially branded as Technic, the 488 GTE race car. Name: Ferrari 488 GTE AF Corse #51 Set Number: 42125 Pieces: 1677 Price: $169.99 Minifigs: 0 Theme: Technic The Box Front It's clear that Lego expects this set to be an AFOL display piece. It has the Creator Expert-style mostly black box, an 18+ age suggestion, and a very classy look. The Box Back The back continues the simple design, with a (fitting) rear shot of the car and a couple photos of the real race car. Oddly, the specs box gives the car's numbers in American-style horsepower and mph, but lists the 0-62 mph time as European-style 3 comma 0 seconds rather than 3.0. The Box Top As typical for Technic cars, the 1:1 shot on the top is one of the wheels. But why did they pick such an unflattering angle of the car to use here? So many blue pins in sight, and it's just not one of the better angles with the red-black and black-white color-transition stickers on the panels. The Real Vehicle Inside the manual, there's several pages about the Ferrari racing team and the car. There's also this head to head comparison shot. It's a pretty good Lego rendition, but at least from this angle, the fenders don't go out enough. There's also too much blue - maybe a stickered panel on each side would be better? The Stickers Oh my, so many stickers. SO many stickers. SIXTY TWO stickers. They do at least come, with the manual, in a cardboard sleeve, so they arrived in great condition. And these two sheets are LARGE. The curl you see here happened from letting them sit out overnight before I did the photos. It didn't affect the stickers at all; they all applied just fine. The New Parts There are quite a few new parts in this set, either new molds or new colors. There's also a couple very rare parts returning to production. Moving around the group here: Red fender extensions, 2. These fit into the existing wheel arches to extend them outward. They only have two pin connections on them, one at each end. Triangular panels, 1 of each. New in red. 3x11 Panel. Just 1. New in blue. Rotor blades, 2. New in black. These are clearly helicopter blades, but they've only appeared so far in Lime in the Lambo Sian set. Frame, 11x15. Just 1. New in black. 1x7 liftarm, thin. Includes 2. This hasn't been produced in red since 2007, so they are currently $5-10 each on Bricklink. 2x3 curved panel. 2, white. This is a new mold for 2021 and I'd expect to see it in numerous sets. Printed headlights, 1 of each. This is an existing windshield part, but the large headlight print is new. 2x2 round brick, 2 in trans red. This is another part that hasn't been made since 2007. It was only ever in 2 sets, both Technic/Racers Ferrari sets. It's fitting to bring it back again for Ferrari tail lights, and this will hopefully bring the price down from it's $5-10 range. Technic pin with pin hole, 8 in red. Despite this common part being in over 200 sets, it's never been produced in red until now. 2x3 curved liftarm, thick. 2 in black. This is a new mold. It fits perfectly with several of the curved Technic panels, essentially extending them another stud. The Build, Part 1 The bags are numbered 1 through 5. The number 1 bags produce this - the V8 engine and rear suspension, along with some frame for the middle of the car. There is a differential between the rear wheels, connected to the V8, so like many Technic vehicles, the pistons move as the car rolls. However, there is no gearbox or other complications. It's just a direct connection via a stack of gears. The Build, Part 2 Bags #2 add a ton of size to the car. There's a few studs to add at the rear still, but the overall size is pretty much done now. The steering wheel is functional, but be careful. When you add the steering wheel, check if it's straight when the front wheels are straight. If not, you can pull one of the 16 tooth gears off, align them, and put the gear back on. If you don't catch it now, you'll have to disassemble a lot of car to fix it later. The manual doesn't point this out, so I'm giving you the warning. The Build, Part 3 This set of bags puts the front of the car on. You'll notice a distinct lack of stickers... there was a lot of discussion in the forums here about how the car would look without, and even some nice Photoshoppery, but I wanted to see it for real. So I built the car with no race stickers on it, photographed it naked, and then I added the stickers later. The only stickers I put on during the build were neutral ones (like Ferrari logos) and the interior. You can see here some gaps in the front end. Some of these are deliberate - the ones in the middle of the hood are for airflow in the real car. However, the other parts below are too visible. A black panel underneath would have helped. I also don't like the gaps above the wheels where the triangular panels don't cover behind the headlights. That's part of building a Technic car though.... The Interior Before closing up the car, here's a shot of the dashboard. There aren't too many stickers here, but they do add a lot to the look. The seat is pretty minimal though. The Build, Part 4 The #4 bags put the rear on the car. Without stickers, the blue and yellow looks pretty out of place. If I was planning to keep the car stickerless, I'd definitely replace those with red parts. I'd also have to debate whether I wanted a white stripe down the center or not. The Build, Finished The last set of bags obviously complete the car. Here's a set of photos from different sides, showing the naked car. If you want a non-race version of the car, clearly you'll need a few red parts to replace the blue and yellow around the car. The black aerodynamic bits (the front splitter, rear diffuser, rear wing) and white stripe still look pretty racecar though. And to me, without stickers, the doors look odd. The gap behind the doors and the upward slope combine to make the car look bent when viewed from the side. Enough of that. Time to take a few panels off for easier stickering, add the rest of the 60-odd stickers, and see how it's designed to look. The Stickered Car With stickers, some of the color choices make much more sense. The incredible busyness of the stickers, I think, makes the car look much better. It hides the Technic-ness of the build and makes it look more finished. The gaps and odd shapes here and there are less noticeable. It's also a great engine compartment in my opinion - it's amazing how much a couple crossed tubes and a couple of flat silver elbows make it look so much more accurate. The Underside Since I know people would want to see it, here's underneath the car. This does not look very Technic. There's HUGE empty spaces where most Technic sets would have gearboxes and functions. Clearly, this is a shelf model, not a play set. The Comparison Here's the Ferrari next to the other 2021 set I reviewed, the Jeep Wrangler. As you'd expect from a 3x price difference, there's a massive difference in size. There's also a massive difference in sticker count, but not a massive difference in functions The Other Comparison The most logical comparison car would be 2019's 42096 Porsche 911 RSR, but I don't own that set. Digging a little further back, 2015 had the 42039 "24 Hour Race Car" with its generic stickers and non-licensed anything. They're very similar in size, despite the Ferrari having 400 more pieces. It's obvious the extra parts went into giving the Ferrari more, smaller panels and more complex shaping. The 24 Hour car had several functions (a gearbox to switch between a knob opening the doors or opening the hood, and optionally could have those functions motorized, plus more interesting suspension) but lacked the functional steering wheel. Given the similar size and the fact that both do have significant stickering, I don't think average people would think twice if they saw these cars together on a shelf. The Suspension Personally, I think the car sits too high. There's room to fit a full liftarm on top of the wheels, and the ground clearance is a brick and 2 plates. That seems like a lot for a serious racecar like this. That's to give the suspension room to move though - there is full independent suspension. When compressed, it looks like this: I think that looks better, and I'm tempted to sacrifice the functional suspension (or at least some of its range of movement) to have the car sit lower. The Issues There's a few areas of the car I think could be better that I haven't mentioned yet. First, there's this gap over the rear wheels. On the front wheels, flex axles are used to match the curve of the wheel arch. Here, they used rigid connectors and left a gap. There's a build reason for that - the long rod of connectors is only half-inserted in the back for a while, then when the rear wing area is added, it's pushed back to lock things together - but it doesn't look great. You can also see in this picture the worst sticker offense IMHO. The black and white sticker on a red panel... on the real car, there is a white section of the rear pillar. They were trying to represent that, splitting the panel visually into the pillar and the black of the back window area. However, it does not work. Being on a red panel is a big part of the problem - since you can see the red all the way around the sticker, it ruins the desired illusion. This would have been better as a black panel with the sticker. The crookedness is my fault, from how I built the set, but even so, I think the black rectangle stickers there are dumb. Since I'd already build the car without them, I could not get them on straight. They're supposed to make that section of the panels "disappear" but since you can still see red all the way around, it just doesn't work. I'm really tempted to remove them. That said, the other stickers were not nearly as hard to get aligned right as I feared. Since there's gaps between the pieces on the front end, slight misalignments aren't obvious. At the back is a different story. These stickers are impossible to get aligned correctly without being able to try a bunch of times. Since the sticker goes to the end of the beam, it's hard to judge precisely how it's positioned in the middle. I'm thinking here about just removing the sticker from the 7 stud arm. I am not a fan of this roof design. I don't like having the white beams under the curved panels, plus stickers, to make the white stripe. It creates a groove down the middle of the roof that shouldn't be there. It would take a bit of redesign, but it would look better with a 2 stud wider roof so that the center could be a curved panel in white. There's gaps on the side anyway, so just widen the roof, take the curved red axles straight back, and push the white/black stickered panels out a stud (or replace them with a different panel). The Ratings Design: 8 Build Experience: 8 Features: 2 Playability: 3 Parts/Value: 7 Overall: 8 or 5. I split my final score because it depends on who you are. Despite the Technic branding on this set, it doesn't feel Technic. There's very minimal function - just the steering wheel, suspension, engine, and opening doors (the S@H listing says there's an opening hood, but there's not). In fact, there's not even standard "hand of God" steering via a knob on the roof or back. The ONLY way to steer is via the steering wheel, which makes it difficult to push around. There's a lot of wasted internal space, and the space that IS filled is complex connections to get panels connected at the right angles to form the body. If you're looking for a Technic vehicle, there are much more interesting models out there - I can't help but think of set 8297, the Technic Off-Roader that was my exit from my dark ages. It was slightly smaller, but had all the functions of this car, plus motorized winch, motorized ride height adjustment, a gearbox to switch between functions, soft-opening doors, etc. For the Technic enthusiast, this would only rate a 5, and that mostly as a part pack for red panels. This is not a car for Technic people the way the Lambo, Chiron, or other cars are. Those two are of course much more expensive as well. This set is CLEARLY intended for people looking for a decoration. It fills that role well, hence the score of 8. If you want a large, impressive looking car to have on a desk or shelf, this is a great model. This is the car equivalent of the Ideas Piano or the Lunar Lander. They've got a bit of functionality to show to people, but mostly, they sit there and look cool. There's nothing wrong with that, but it makes me question the Technic branding on this set. Honestly, Lego had it right with the older sets being Racers branded. This might almost be better branded as a "UCS" Speed Champions set. I think it would be better understood that way. The flaws in the set are all rather minor - there are cosmetic things I'd do differently, but nothing that's unmodable. This set also hits its 18+ age mark better than most. The instructions are clear, but not as hand-holding as most modern Technic manuals. For example, if you're building a subassembly and need to turn it around, that will be indicated as usual. However, if the whole car needs turned around, they don't mark that. It's expected that you can see and follow the picture without calling it out. There's quite a few times where you attach things that aren't shown clearly, but when you look at where it's going, there's only one way to do it. Nothing was overly difficult, but it was definitely a bit more challenging of a build. I enjoyed building the set, and I'll enjoy having it in my collection. I might have to pick up a few other cars to go with it, but hope it doesn't get too jealous of their features
  12. You're correct. The stickers are NOT clear-backed. The only way to use the Ferrari logos on an all-red car would be to carefully cut the white off from around the badge. I think my gripe is that is tried to appeal to both groups and so doesn't quite hit either one. For display, they could have left out the suspension and engine, making a pure show set. That would have allowed a better designed model, since a lot of internal space and part budget would have been freed up. They could have made it more rigid and filled in a few of the gaps. For the Technic folks, they could have simplified the cosmetics and made it more feature-filled - or bumped it up to Lambo scale and price. My assumption is their target market (and heck, probably this is what their experience and market research shows - certainly the people on a Lego fan forum aren't the majority of their customers) wants something to look nice and when a guest comments, they can push it around, show the working suspension and engine, and most people would be pretty darn impressed by that. I know a couple Ferrari fans at my work and I plan to show the car to them, and they'll be suitably impressed by it as it stands.
  13. I LOVE the look of this set. Can't wait to hear if it's good to drive.
  14. mostlytechnic

    [REVIEW] 42122 - Technic Jeep Wrangler

    Nice catch - they used the same image for both the black 1x4 and 1x5 thin beams. Oops!
  15. mostlytechnic

    42122 Jeep Wrangler

    Just keep in mind, you'll have to cut your hose into 2 stud long bits. You can't put the hose all the way through the panel and out the other side. The center axle hole, turned the other way, prevents it.
  16. mostlytechnic

    [REVIEW] 42122 - Technic Jeep Wrangler

    With the steering angle being so minimal, there's no need (IMHO) for fine control of the steering that you might get with a larger knob.
  17. mostlytechnic

    42122 Jeep Wrangler [VIDEO REVIEW]

    I don't think it's particularly ugly, but I also don't think it's a great match to the real vehicle. The headlights are protruding instead of recessed. There's no winch on the real Jeep. The bumper looks quite different (and hard to replicate in Lego). And the grill, while accurate, I would have preferred to be built instead of printed. I'm sure that was a demand of the Jeep marketing team though. The grill is too iconic to compromise on. So as a Lego set, I think it's fine, but it's better when there's not a picture of the real thing to compare to
  18. mostlytechnic

    [REVIEW] 42122 - Technic Jeep Wrangler

    That's reasonable, but I also don't think any of them are going to be rare. The tires are also in a city tractor set. The 3x7 panels will be all over the new sets (in a range of colors). I'm sure the curved 1x2x3 panels will be too. It's a decent random Technic parts pack (assorted beams, pins, etc) but low on axles/gears, and it's worse value (in a price per part measurement) than the new McLaren will be (similar size set), so I didn't rate it higher.
  19. mostlytechnic

    [MOC] Russian Church

    Wow, that's fantastic! I love how it looks so simple - in a good way. There not a ton of greebling, so the architecture itself is what stands out. Love the flowers on the wall detail too - I can picture the real-world version and it's such a good replica.
  20. mostlytechnic

    Help with identifying parts/sets!

    The black piece on the left is a boat keel:;colorID=11&amp;in=A And the grey piece with green windows only came in one set:;O={"iconly":0}
  21. mostlytechnic

    REVIEW | 10274 Ghostbusters Ecto-1

    Great review! I think this set will sell like hotcakes - it's such an instantly recognizable vehicle, well replicated into Lego, and it makes a great desk/shelf decoration. It's so much easier to display than something like the Firehouse set or other large buildings. On the working steering wheel - that's done sometimes in Technic sets. It's typically expected that you'd drive the vehicle around using the knob on the roof and that the steering wheel matching what you do is a cool function. I don't know that I've ever seen an instruction manual show that you can steer the car from the steering wheel. Yep, it works, but it's far from ideal (hard to reach, sometimes slips gears, takes several rotations, etc) since they don't really expect you to USE the steering wheel. Speaking of, that's a new steering wheel part, isn't it? Minor changes I'd make to be more accurate, based on the trailer - the blue roof lights should be moved outward a stud. And the bright blue hoses running down the side next to the ladder look almost black in the trailer. I think they're just filthy, but those should have been black or at least dark blue IMHO. Perhaps in the movie they get cleaned up and are brighter blue? But in the trailer, they're dark.
  22. mostlytechnic

    REVIEW: 21324 LEGO 123 Sesame Street

    I haven't watched Sesame Street since I was a little kid in the early 80s, but this is still an absolute day 1 buy for me. I love the overall look. I'll probably mod it to not be a corner layout so it's easier to see both buildings on a shelf. I'll also mod to put Oscar to the right of the front door where he belongs I wish Cookie was fuzzy (I'm from the era when Elmo wasn't the star so I don't really mind him being smooth) but I know that would have meant another mold in a set that already got a bunch of them. I understand this isn't really a set for the current watchers of Sesame Street (it's not Duplo after all...) so I'm assuming the 18+ rating is just to make it clear this is intended for adult collectors. I think that's at odds though with the set being scaled down and only $120. I think MOST adults who want this as a collectable would have been happier with a $200 set with a couple more figs and more pieces... but there are SO many really expensive sets these days that I'm happy it's smaller and cheaper.
  23. Technic Cement Mixer Thanks to Lego and EB for this review set. Name: Cement Mixer Set Number: 42112 Pieces: 1163 Price: $119.99 (US) Minifigs: 0 Theme: Technic The Box Front Yup, it's a cement mixer alright. I really like that it's something so different - we've never had a Technic truck like this before. It's something other than a crane, forklift, or airplane. Got a mix of blues with a splash of orange highlights. Looks pretty decent to me. (Unsurprisingly, Lego picked the best angle as the front of box image. They do know product photography.) The Box Back It's not the most functional set ever, but it covers the necessities. Looks like it has the ability to rotate the drum either by rolling the truck or manually cranking it. Dual axle steering - wonder if that's got proper steering geometry or not? And that is a super organized array of Technic Pin Connector Round 2/3 there.... I guess that's supposed to be a nice cement slab being poured? The Opening Unfortunately, the box is sealed with thumb tear-holes rather than tape seals. And when you open it, it looks surprisingly empty. It's only about 2/3 full which is less than most sets I've gotten recently. The Contents Dumped out, there's quite a bit here. There are bags divided into group 1, 2, and 3. There's a small bag of the joiners as bag 4, and there's an un-numbered bag of tires. And there's 2 more parts not in a bag.... The New Parts The cement mixer barrel itself. It's 2 identical parts that connect with 4 pins. Once mated together, the only connection points on them are a pair of 1x3 pinhole connections at the closed end. They are printed with a C logo. I appreciate the detail of having the dimple from the molding process right in the middle of the C, so it actually looks like it belongs there. And oh yeah, they are HUGE! Here's a bunch of comparisons to show just how big these pieces are. I think this year's 42108 Mobile Crane might struggle to pick up something this huge (not really; the barrel is very light weight, but it sure LOOKS heavy) The dump truck from 42055 Bucket Wheel Excavator is puny next to it. No, you won't be using this as cargo on a train layout. It stands as tall as the Lunar Lander set (and I know the flag and astronaut figs are missing - my kids "borrowed" them and I need to get them back) Finally, it dwarfs the cement mixer barrel from City sets. In fact, you can open the Technic barrel and put the City barrel inside. The city barrel has been used more as other things than it has as a cement mixer - it's been engine shrouds on helicopters, spaceships, etc. It has the advantage of having more connection points since the end is anti-studs allowing both studden and Technic connections to it. Huge Technic parts often don't get any other official usage - think of the huge buckets made for the Volvo Loader or the Liebherr set. The Papers The instructions are split into 2 books and there's a small sticker sheet. And a Legoland promo - not sure how much those will be redeemed with the current events (although it doesn't expire until 2023), but it's in there. Or at least it's in the European box that I received for review, but the website that the brochure references covers all the Legoland resorts and Discovery Centers worldwide. The Build, Bag 1 Bag 1 builds the chassis of the truck, more or less. Up front there's a tiny inline-4 engine representation. There is also the dual-axle steering. Yes, the two axles steer at slightly different angles. To my eye though, it's barely noticeable. The steering mechanism is also redundant. There's both a black gear rack AND an orange 1x2 liftarm pushing each axle. I'm not sure why there's both. The gear rack is the normal and better method. Either one alone though should work. The double axles in the rear are both connected to the driveshaft. The instructions are very clear to make sure you get the two differentials facing opposite ways so it works correctly. It even goes so far as to put a white round joiner in the back corner to give a reference as you build the otherwise very symmetrical structure The Build, Bag 2 Bag 2 adds the supports for the barrel, the gearbox and driveshafts that connect the wheels to the barrel, and a few cosmetic parts. The driveshaft going to the barrel has one of the new linear clutches in it. Until now that part was only available in the massive Leibherr 9800 set. And oddly, they have you put the wheels on now. Most sets save that for last. The Build, Bag 3 Bag 3 finishes off the cab, fenders, and water tank. All that's left is to add the barrel: Oddly, as huge as the barrel parts are, it seems slightly undersized to me on the model. I suspect that's just my American view - this is clearly a European truck with its dual steering axles. Here in the US, I virtually never see cement mixers that rear-dump like this anymore. They've all been replaced by larger trucks that discharge in the front, allowing for a larger, longer barrel: The Front I totally get the rugged vibe that is intended on this truck. However, there's so many little details I don't like. First, I hate these grill stickers. They're not too bad here, since they're divided by the grey bar. But I've seen other sets (42098 Car Transporter) that use multiple of them stacked up, and it's ugly. They're impossible to get all aligned exactly the same, so they look bad. Then there's the dark blue sticker right above that on a black 1x3 liftarm. That part in dark blue has only been in 2 Bionicle sets 15 years ago - so they used a sticker instead. Edit: There ARE two dark blue 3L liftarms in the set, so why on earth not use one here? I also don't like how the dark blue curved panels with stickers don't match up with the curves of the white round parts below. And the orange lights on the roof are too small. The Gap There is a reason the main photos on the box are from angles. The back of the cab might be the biggest offender on the set. There's a huge hole between the cab and the mixer. Why? It feels like just empty, wasted space. The smokestacks don't come all the way down - they just end halfway down the cab. And worst, what is up with that exposed yellow axle for the steering? At least use black, but better yet, move it forward into the back wall of the cab. You can also see an example of wasted parts there. There's a grey Technic Pin 1/2 in the grey liftarm that the steering axle goes through. It's there JUST to fill the hole and make sure people don't try to run the axle through the wrong spot. There's quite a few of those throughout the set. I'm not sure why Lego feels that's necessary - this is a 10+ rated set and I guess they want to help out the younger end of that range? The Function There's a lever on the right hand side that switches the barrel from wheel-driven to non-driven to crank-driven. Here's how it works with the crank. This also shows one thing that should have been improved. You've GOT to hold the truck with your other hand while cranking, or it bounces all over. It really needed some functional chocks or outriggers to stabilize it while discharging the "concrete." The Turn Radius Here you can see both the wheel-driven barrel function and the terrible turning radius. Trucks like this aren't known for being maneuverable like a sports car, but still, this is barely able to turn at all. A slight redesign of the steering axle system should have allowed sharper turns. The Chute In the definite plus column is the discharge chute. This is a very clever design that gives it a great deal of flexibility to aim the concrete. The chute itself is an interesting design to get the V-shape. Given how fast the parts come out and how bouncy they are, it'd have been nicer to be a little deeper V though. Ratings Design: 7 Build Experience: 7 Features: 6 Playability: 8 Parts/Value: 6 Overall: 7. Overall, it's a nice addition to the Technic range of construction vehicles. It's unique and will attract a lot of builders for that reason alone. The build is not overly repetitive and provides an array of beams in two shades of blue. The build isn't perfect though. I'm looking forward to seeing those barrel pieces being used in a future Iron Builder competition. And for value, it's ok. $120 feels a little steep for me, especially for a Technic set where not only are there the usual hundreds of pins but also 100 joiners in the part count. I'd personally have waited to purchase this set until I got a sale or at least a nice freebie from Lego with my purchase.
  24. mostlytechnic

    FABUpunk! Mafia II Sign-ups

    I'm in! What is your favorite FABULAND animal? The monkey. I keep the Fabuland Orchestra (set 3631, and the only Fab set I own) sitting assembled on my desk. Since the monkey has a marching snare drum and I'm a percussionist/drummer/played marching snare for 4 years way back in the day/etc, it's a natural fit. Should LEGO bring FABULAND back? Nope. Don't think it'd do well today. And Friends has all the animals people need these days. What is your least favorite Mafia role? (Can either be a generic role you don't like to see including in games or a specific experience in a game) Vanilla - it so often turns into just waiting around to see what the other people share from night actions. But that also is lower stress, so....
  25. mostlytechnic

    [REVIEW] 42113 - Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey

    Thanks for the review, and I appreciate all the details you gave on the technical design. Looks like a set we'll all miss.