Lego fun, and a disappointment

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009 at 11:19pm

Last weekend I picked up a bulk lot of Lego that I had bought on eBay. This lot contained a couple of assembled models as well as a fair amount of loose bricks.

However, the key piece was a set released in the early years of Lego Technic, 1980 to precise. Set 8860, the first Car Chassis:

Lego Car Chassis (8860) with box

It is obvious that this set is missing two wheels, but is is also missing a number of smaller pieces. But when I bought the lot it wasn’t known how many pieces were actually missing.

So this is where the fun starts. Each night last week I took one of the assembled models, stripped it down, cleaned the pieces (mostly just dusting with a brush) and then reassembled the model as best as I could.

Lego Circuit Shock Racer (8422)Lego Hovercraft (8824)
Lego Fire Engine (8280)Lego Pneumatic Excavator (8837)

Of these four the Pneumatic Excavator was the most interesting as I never had any pneumatic lego when I was a kid. Although the set I remember wishing I had was the Air Tech Claw Rig (8868), the only set lego produced with a motorised pneumatic compressor.

It was now time for the car chassis, which was quite interesting to build because it achieves so much with the simpler pieces. For example the engine doesn’t use the special block and piston pieces that I remembered. The only special piece is the piston head and the remainder is composed of common gears, axles and plates. The steering is similarily constructed using 2×2 swivel plates instead of the later steering linkages.

Lego Car Chassis (8860)

This is where the disappointment comes in.

On the box and manual for the car chassis the suspension on the rear wheels is pictured as if it were constructed from axles and connectors, with a spring thrown in. This can be seen on the cover and even this page.

However, the actual construction of the suspension is with 6.5L shock absorbers. It looks like the change of design was at the last minute and they only had time to make the minimum required changes to the manual.

So what now? Fortunately most of the missing pieces (that I have listed) are common plates or bricks, most of which should be in the boxes of loose bricks up in the roof. For some of the specific pieces, such as the large wheels, I should be able to turn to eBay.

Of course I will also have to break down all of these sets and reassemble them as the B model in order to get a complete picture of what pieces are missing.

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