Lego Ideas – Wall-E (21303) Review

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Lego Ideas – Wall-E (21303): Continuing with the reviews that were promised a long time ago this time it’s Wall-E. I’ve seen tons of robots or creatures made with Lego, but none has captured the heart of the creation more than this Wall-E build. If there is a testament here, it’s how much you emotion you can actually get from this Lego model just by the movement of the head, arms, and the eyes.

 

Time to Knoll: 56.5 Minutes

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View post on imgur.com

Time to Build: 81 Minutes

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View post on imgur.com

 

Metrics:

  • Pieces: 676 and 178 Steps – Manual (118 Pages)
  • Price: $59.99 on Lego (Temp out of stock) and $67.49 on Amazon
  • Weight 527 grams
  • Combo Points: (13X62X1X1) = 806 points
  • Volume (Based on Blob length/width/height): 80mm x 48mm x 160.0mm or 614.4 cm³ with treads making it closer to 694.7 cm³

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Scores:

  • Uniqueness: 5 out of 5 Stars
  • Aesthetics: 5 out of 5 Stars
  • Fun to Build: 5 out of 5 Stars
  • Hoarding: 5 out of 5 Stars

 

Spectrum:

 

What Else? So then, let’s talk about why in part this review took so long to get out. First I did buy the original set from Day 1, and I was halfway through the review when it was announced that Lego was going to reissue the set. This is sort of unheard of, but if you bought the original you can attest that while the head may move more ‘freely’ with the original neck (show on the left) it was tough to make it ‘stay’.

I then spent a bit of time waiting for an official fix from Lego to come, and in the mean time saw that Chris McVeigh actually posted a fix of his own that I bought. (Which you can see here) I kept this for a while, and then not hearing anything further from Lego decided to buy those parts as well. With that in mind let’s do a quick review-in-review of the necks.

Lego Original: In truth I understand why this method was employed. It does actually give you a much larger freedom of movement. However like most I agree that while the joint in the neck worked well, the head was too much weight for it, and would lead to it falling over.

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Chris McVeigh Fix: This is actually the fix that despite buying the official fix I am using currently in my Wall-E. I discuss this in more just below, but it really comes down to the angle and weights here. The complaint here though is that the pieces used are a little less common (and not worth buying if you just buy the updated Lego set)

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Lego Fix: This does improve the ability for Wall-E’s head to keep itself upright, but it’s still imperfect. In short there’s just not enough weight or the wrong angle here that is throwing off the center of gravity. As well the back piece of the head swivels in a weird way.

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Remix: Alright so given the treads I figured why not turn the living embodiment of adorable into a tank.  With a big main turret that swivels, hatches on the side, and a rear machine gun post – I’m actually quite pleased with the result. Since there was also space inside I was able to make use of all the pieces.

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Final Thoughts: So while I am a bit sad that I had to source parts because I bought this day 1 (getting the poorer version of the neck), I have 0 regrets. This set is less a display piece, and more like a (stationary) part of the family. Wall-E ends being a seasonal or sporadic piece of art – given various hats for Christmas and Halloween, or flags and baskets for Independence day or Easter. If you enjoyed the movie this is perfect set for you – even if you aren’t a Lego fan. (In which case, odd choice of blog for you to be reading eh?)

Final Score: 5 out of 5 Stars

Lego Creator – Twinblade Adventures (31020) Review

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Lego Creator – Twinblade Adventures (31020): Another 3-in-1 from the Creator series, but I’m not as enthralled with this one (even among those with winged vehicles) I’ve always said my main peeve with Lego sets are those without a clear audience. This lacks any cool factor, historical factor, or engineering factor – it feels more like it exists because they needed some more aerial Creator sets.

 

Time to Knoll: 11.5 Minutes

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Time to Build: 14.5 Minutes (VTOL Build)

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Time to Build: 12.5 Minutes (Plane Build)

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Time to Build: 13 Minutes (Helicopter Build)

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Metrics:

  • Pieces: 216 and 23, 31, 28Steps – Manual for VTOL, Plane, Helicopter (32, 34, and 32 Pages)
  • Price: $17.99 on Lego and $15.29 on Amazon
  • Weight 153 grams
  • Combo Points: (16X39X3X3) = 5,616 points
  • Volume (Based on Blob length/width/height): 96mm x 32mm x 83.2mm or 255.6 cm³

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Scores:

  • Uniqueness: 1 out of 5 Stars
  • Aesthetics: 2 out of 5 Stars
  • Fun to Build: 2 out of 5 Stars
  • Hoarding: 2 out of 5 Stars

 

Spectrum:

 

What Else? So while it’s clear without any sense of motion – the plane offered here has no way to maintain, and would as Toy Story put it ‘fall with style’. Undeterred though I set out to see how possible it would be if this was mechanized. Where my little push of velocity was a constant it could maintain.

Of course NASA is kind enough to provide formulas and understanding on the topic of Lift. Most of this equation is easy enough to figure out, weight, air density, surface area of wings. Of course there was one wrinkle – namely the Coefficient of lift.

Now while NASA does provide info on this, sadly in order to calculate it – you need a wind tunnel. Which as mentioned before I do not have (although maybe I should invest). Now using a nifty calculator (and Worcester’s current temperature) I get a required CL of 51571.41 (which checks out doing the reverse math).

Now sadly I am not an aeronautics expert – so I can’t say whether 51k is a lot or a little, but especially with no motor – it would seem Lego planes were simply not meant to fly.

(For those wondering that comes from 1.068 N for weight from grams of 109g, 7 inch^2 for wing area, 0.284 ft/s from a simple push test, and this chart for air density.)

Of course I am a computer programmer reviewing Lego sets – so I welcome others to correct my math here.

 

Remix: For the remix here, with the past fourth of July, and the return of Battlebots I figured it was good of me to make a little bot myself. (Okay I admit I was watching it during review) Due to the needs to get all the ramps, flippers, and horizontal spinners it does suffer from a bit of rainbow-warriorism though.

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Final Thoughts: Overall this is my least favorite from the Creator line, and it’s not hard to see why. The color palette is rather drab, each of the creations just doesn’t feel as ‘tight’ as other creator series sets, and I wish the sets were a bit more complex and minifig scaled.

Final Score: 1 out of 5 Stars