I made a decision a few weeks ago to collect the sets required to allow me to put together the 40th Anniversary Technic Model: the reimagined 8860. As I have mentioned recently, LEGO® Technical sets (as they were called back in the day) were my introduction to building mechanisms, and they changed the way I thought about building with LEGO Bricks until I entered my Dark Ages.
I managed to obtain this set, as well as the BMW Motorrad Adventure Motor Cycle, for $10 at a major department store in Melbourne, thanks to the accrual of Credit Card Loyalty points. Important purchasing tip: do you accrue loyalty points? Frequent Flyer points? I also use the QANTAS frequent flyer store as a way to purchase LEGO. It took me a while to recognise that I have never been able to properly take advantage of Frequent Flyer schemes to receive actual flights, so I am chipping away at my supply of points to obtain LEGO.They also have some recently retired sets – I managed to pick up the Constructable General Grievous figure. Not my goal, as far as accruing points, but useful to remember. Especially if the Frequent Flyer accrue with normal spending. I recognise of course that many serious fans of LEGO may already have a significant spending problem, and would not wish to encourage you to use a credit card beyond your means. This would be bad. Credit cards are great, so long as you don’t end up paying interest on them. Then it becomes stupidly expensive. SO: Always pay them off before interest becomes due.
So, other than not spending money, what else did I learn from this set?
The Telehandler has several mechanisms. Some I am familiar with, others less so.
There is a linear actuator – the first time I have used one – to raise and lower the boom.
There is a clever linkage system allowing four wheel steering.
A worm gear adjusts the pitch of the bucket
A larger diameter, but shorter worm gear assists with the extension of the boom.
The vehicle rolls nicely on its 49.53mm diameter tyres, and it is fun to roll. Each of the functions features either a small gear acting as a knurled knob, or a bright red connector, to make use each function. The 40th anniversary beam is clearly displayed on the back of the vehicle, almost like a number plate.
The construction was interesting, with each mechanism coming together relatively separately to the others, but not necessarily obvious until they were completed. This set took me about an hour or so to put together, and I suspect it will take a similar time to pull apart, sorting as I go. It is interesting observing the way that the relationships between some pieces gets reinforced: often in two directions.
I am starting to develop a feel for the elements of technic construction. It almost feels that Technic sets are constructed as a spiral from the core, moving out, but this might only be a perception I have at present. I am sure I will have a better feeling about how this works before too long. The flexing of the model as some elements slip into place is a little challenging for me to deal with. This model finishes up a little smaller than I expected it should, but is neat and compact.
I am enjoying these 40th Anniversary Technic builds, however there do not seem to be as many examples of gearing up/down as I remember in Technical Sets from Ancient Times. I still find it an interesting build, especially since I am more a ‘System’ type of builder. I wonder, however, if they hold a significant level of joy for someone who is out to see ‘how stuff works.’ I am interested to see how the final model, and the car chassis come together.
As a model that does not lend itself readily to automation, it has some interesting mechanisms- especially for the inexperienced Technic Builder. I award it 4 out of 5 Arbitrary Praise Units. It is swooshable/zoomable and has some interesting functionality. I’m not sure how I would have felt paying full price for it, but I realise that I don’t really like paying full price for sets anyway. This might explain the lag between set release and some of my reviews.
I have a couple of posts planned before I get to the Anniversary car-chassis. … not to mention a need to pull these sets apart and sort them.
In the mean time…