42043 – Mercedes-Benz Arocs 3245


This is 42043_boxis a what we can call a huuuuuge Lego Technic set. Well in fact, it’s the biggest that Lego has produced till summer 2015, almost 3.000 pieces, a motor, lots of pneumatic parts, few interesting and innovative ideas for the chassis building and a devastator look ! I got it from Germany for less than 200€. It’s quite expensive for a Lego box, but this is less than 0,07€ per part only, which makes it in fact very cheap, even more compared to those overrated Star Wars boxes !

The A model is a Mercedes dump truck, an Arocs, not one of those you’ll see everywhere, which are Actros trucks. Arocs and Actros are easy to identify, they look quite the same but the Actros has only 2 axles whereas Arocs has 4 ! The model has a pneumatic arm and side stabilizers. It’s not fully RC and the interesting functions are located around the pneumatic arm, not steering nor driving.

Well, the A model is nice, it’s big, plenty of functions, challenging to build and will occupy you at least 8 to 10 hours… But once built, what remains of the interest ?

My son gave it the ultimate playability tests !
The manual steering and driving are ok, the model is a bit heavy for a 7 years old kid, but remains playable.
The dump works well, it’s motorized with one large actuator, you can raise at least 0,5 kg of stuff with it, but not much more. It’s enough in fact, a full load of Lego pieces wont weight much more than that.
The problem, because there’s a problem, is the pneumatic functions. The arm is heavy and the pistons can’t handle it so well.

If you want to lift loads, you’ll quickly realize that it’s not really doable, and if it finally works, the moves will be abrupt. When you’ll lower the arm, it will fall because the weight will compress the pistons and make the arm almost uncontrollable
Unfortunately, the use of pneumatics is as usual with Lego Technics, more a wish to make something different than a search for efficiency. The arm is not really playable, the double buckets won’t be able to load things, so disappointing…

Overall, i liked the model. Firstly because of it’s look, it’s well made, it’s big, it’s heavy, that’s a truck ! A bit sad it’s not a toy, but only a model that you’ll install on the shelf… unless you unbuild it and buy the B model, which is, in my humble opinion much better !

B model is a smaller Mercedes truck, let’s consider it’s an Actros. It has a trailer and roughly the same functionalities than A model, Although, playing with the trailer and moving is much more fun !
Adding motors to the B model is a project I’m gonna work on in the following weeks, it will probably end with instructions on the blog !

Thank you for reading me, go buy 42043 now ! πŸ™‚

 Posted by at 10 h 49 min

42029 – Customized Pick Up Truck


One of42029_box the models that made me come back to Lego, and more especially to Lego Technics (Star Wars Legos were yet very present in the home :p) was this wonderfully well designed Pick Up Truck.
It’s clearly not the biggest model of its time, only 1063 parts, nor the one with the more rare items that you’ll be seeking around if you like to create custom models. Its functionalities are very common, a tipping bed and a winch, not even a Power Function motor, but… it has a look ! 4 huge wheels, a big hood with apparent motor exhausts, a front grill guard, openable doors and a feel of power which comes from its massive cabin and motor !
I definitely liked it in video when i was exploring Youtube, the box charmed me and building, as it was one of my first models, was a great pleasure ! For sure, that model is not, and can’t be a flagship, it’s to small, lacks originality, but it remains a very good one. I built it, disassembled it later, and finally built it again. My 7 years old kid likes it too, what’s better as proof ?!

Speaking of inventory, if you like the dark bluish grey and red parts, you’ll be fine. 4 hard shock absorbers, 1 small actuator, 22 red panels of all kinds, lots of 13 holes beams, 4 Wheel Hubs and 12 of those rare Perpendicular Pin Connectors 44809are the noticeable pieces, the rest of them are those you’ll find everywhere.

In terms of playability, the winch works well, but it’s so… slow… even if you motorize it. The tipping bed has a nice mechanism but is moved by a small actuator, dont expect to raise heavy loads. The steering works well, but is fragile, if you hit hard something with the front wheels turned, the one which is turned inside will push its link very strong and the link will make its towball jump out of his housing.

As you can see if you read that page till here, this model is not the best one technically speaking, few functions, few interesting parts, not a challenging building but it’s still a very interesting one because it’s beautiful and will entertain you, your kid, the neighbours, or whoever will watch it ! It’s nice, it’s colored, it seems powerful and well designed !

As usual, a Youtube video, I choosed Sariel again, he is the master anyway, the choice was not hard πŸ™‚

To complete that page, note that the B-Model, a Forest Skidder is just… good to be forgotten πŸ™‚

 Posted by at 1 h 25 min

42000 – Formula 1


Today was a rainy day, nothing interesting to do… So is the time to open the box of that 42000 Formula 1 that I bought a few months ago for such an occasion !


42000-boxThis model is made of 1141 pieces and designed by Uwe Wabra. It’s quite big, around 60 cm and contains 16 wishbones suspension arms which add a very realistic look to the front and rear axles, nearly impossible to reproduce with other pieces.Β The model contains also a bunch of panels in red and white colors and 4 nice wheels. Building it took me roughly three hours. The front, side and top views are very sexy but the rear side looks wishbone suspension armunfinished. It’s ready to receive the PF battery box, offering 4 blue useless pins which are not matching the general colors of the model. I guess they’re here to simulate 4 exhausts, but the result is uncertain compared to the overall quality of the model. Apart of that small design error, I love it, the choice of the colors is perfect, the scale seems good and the black chassis which is hidden under the bodywork is nicely made.



I loved building this model, loved to watch it after and unbuilding it will break my heart !

For more details, check Sariel’s great review on Youtube.


 Posted by at 11 h 52 min

42009 – Mobile Crane MK II


42009-boxThe second set I bought was the Mobile Crane MK II. It’s nice, huge, and contains more than 2600 pieces, a nice starter pack. Building the crane took me more thanΒ 8 hours !

This huge baby has plenty of nice functions but lacks a full RC system, you can drive it thanks to its hand of god wheel, the only motorized functions concern the winch and the crane. It’s funny to play with, but the functions are so slow… gearing down was necessary to improve the power of the functions I guess. It moves very smoothly, its weight and the 10 wheels (3 of the 5 axles are steered) make it interesting to manipulate, my 6 years old kid enjoyed to roll it on the floor, more than playing with the crane because of the slow speed of the functions. After a while, he installed it on a table and tried to raise a few things with the crane, the lack of patience made him abandon the idea and he asked me to modify it to make it faster ! (this will certainly made one day or another…)

I enjoyed that model, its well designed, building it is a challenge, not because of it’s complexity but because it requires lots of time and focusing, swap a 13 with a 15 liftarm by mistake, and you’ll understand what I mean if you see what you’ve done wrong 1 hour later πŸ™‚

The best point of that box is that it’s a very nice start set, it contains a lots of pieces, especially if you like construction vehicles.

For more details, check Sariel’s great review on Youtube.

 Posted by at 14 h 40 min

42030 – Remote-Controlled VOLVO L350F Wheel Loader


42030-boxMy first technic set. I bought it when I decided to start my new Lego life.

I choose to start with that loader because it contains lots of pieces and the 4 powerfunctions motors at once ! When i was a kid, i always loved to motorize my buildings, I owned 2 of those 4,5 volts vintage motors (see pictures below), I used to keep the smaller one for steering and take benefit of the big torque of the train motor to propel my models. Lego offers now 4 technical motors, one of them being a servo motor, making your life so much easier when speaking of steering axles.

This model is my first studless one, I was still building lego models, with my son who is fan of Lego star wars and at start, I was not really satisfied of the new building technics, it’s not good old lego bricks anymore, it’s… something new ! But, after a while, I realized that building like this is much more realistic, more challenging because you have to consider the whole project and not only the step you’re currently working on. The result is also much more robust and structured, your bricks were falling everywhere after a small hit in the past, now you build 4×4 buggies who climb rocks and pass through mud puddles without damages !

I’m now a new Lego addict, studless convinced me !

6216m2-motor bb12v-motor

For more details, check Sariel’s great review on Youtube.

 Posted by at 14 h 15 min