Saturday, 12 March 2011

More POOP

Having moaned a few times now on this blog about my hatred of large, unnecessary pieces, also known as POOP, or Parts Out of Other Parts, my ranting went into overdrive a couple of weeks ago. If you've been paying attention, you may recall the subject of my ire on previous occasions - a huge one-piece wing section from the Indiana Jones-themed "Fight on the Flying Wing" set (pic below, courtesy of Bricklink).

Part Number 54093 Wing - not my favourite part....
OK, so let me explain. Set 7734 Cargo Plane was one of those sets which I didn't pay much attention to when it was available at retail - I was too busy spending my time and money trying to complete my LEGO Star Wars collection at that point. As is the way of such things, however, once the set was retired, I started seeing pictures of it and wishing I'd bought it when it was available. One thing lead to another, and before long I was watching auctions on eBay, dismayed at the realization that used examples were often selling for £50+ and MISB ones for even more. I struck lucky a little while back however when I found a copy of the set listed on eBay in used condition but boxed and complete for £30 as a Buy It Now auction. I predictably snapped it up, and it arrived soon afterwards.
Set 7734 Cargo Plane
It's certainly a handsome-looking aircraft and no mistake. Problem is, the compromises made to ensure that it's sleek and sexy had me shaking my head in dismay. Firstly, hated part number 54093 Wing rears its ugly head once again in this set, which was really not a good start to proceedings. And astonishingly, the set also contains 2 further pieces that managed to cause me even more consternation, impossible though that may seem. Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you my new least favourite big ugly unnecessary piece - the snappily-named Part Number 54701c02 Aircraft Fuselage Curved Aft Section with Dark Bluish Gray Base (pic below).

You've got to be joking, right ?
Where do I start with this ? Well, aside from its undoubted monstrous bulk, the thing which had me frothing at the mouth the most was the fact that the upper section and lower section are joined together by 3 small screws. Screws ! To join LEGO pieces together ! Not studs. Not technic pins. Screws. That's just blasphemy. What were LEGO thinking ? And if that's not enough, there's also a bulbous, rubbery cap stuck on the rear of the piece. It really is a horror show. 

Once I'd recovered my composure, I found another part which contained screws - Part Number 54092c01 Aircraft Fuselage Curved Forward 8x16x5 with Trans-Black Glass (pic below).


In this case, the Trans-Black glass is attached to the rest of the piece using 3 small screws. And if that wasn't enough, the aircraft's tail is not much better either - admittedly no screws, but absolutely enormous nonetheless.

My wife took one look and said it looked like a Playmobil plane, which got me wondering whether that was the intention all along. It's hard to know whether the use of pieces like this is driven by a desire to speed up the building process, or whether it's a cost-saving measure given the large number of individual pieces that large, prefabricated monstrosities like these are capable of replacing in one fell swoop.

Anyway, sensitive soul that I am, I don't think I can bear the thought of encountering too many more pieces like this. In order to avoid such stress, therefore, I'd appreciate suggestions from readers as to which other sets I ought to avoid in order to ensure I don't have a similarly traumatic experience.....

9 comments:

  1. Anonymous12/3/11

    I would suggest that you just get over it. Though I am not a huge fan of POOP parts, these actually don't bother me. I will happily have the ability to build realistic looking aircraft in a much more reasonable scale than not. I applaud Lego for balancing aesthetics and functionality with these pieces. For those of us that enjoy building minifig scale aircraft, there hasn't been a better time than now. Though you are spot on about the screws. That is just wrong.

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  2. I agree about the ugliness and [expletive-altered name of competitor redacted] nature of those pieces, but at the risk of getting banned: did you really buy this without checking the bricklink inventory first? Dude, what wee you thinking? You'd clearly had some of the kool-aid drunk by the set designer, but it wore off before you took delivery.

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  3. :-)
    It's truly terrible what a collector will do in order to keep up to date !
    OK, OK - I confess I had an inkling what was coming, but somehow these monstrosities look much worse in the plastic than they do nestling within a Bricklink inventory. Not to mention the traumatic discovery of the screws, which I was not prepared for....

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  4. Did you buy this set just because I listed it under Biggest non-purchase regret on the (Top Secret Word Beginning with B) Forums? :-)

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  5. @Matthew - no, I thought you listed it because you read it here... :-)
    Joking apart, it's an excellent play set, but not such a great buy for AFOLs

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  6. Anonymous13/7/11

    Hey, I know this post is a couple of months old now but I only just came across it. I think when it comes to pieces like this, screws are unforgivable but in the spirit of Lego it can be fun to try and incorporate them into MOCs in an inventive way. I've the latest airport and that wing sitting around was annoying after I took it apart. So...
    http://www.eurobricks.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=56775&st=0&p=1011854&fromsearch=1&#entry1011854

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  7. ^ Nice job - I think that's the first time I've seen anyone successfully employ that miserable wing piece in a respectable MOC !

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  8. Dude, sorry to Necro, but seriously?
    I know that smaller wing bits would be more useful for other builds, but for a plane that big I'd honestly prefer a big solid hunk of plastic to build it around.
    I could probably do something with that tail bit too (Duck tank anyone?), but I'll concede that the aircraft nose is pretty much useless outside of being a sleek-looking aircraft nose.

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  9. I'm sure that most of us could, with a little thought, figure out an alternative use for some of these huge hunks of plastic. If however we'd been given lots of smaller pieces instead, I'm certain we'd have found those MUCH more useful for other builds.... Plus I feel cheated by these monster parts - they rob me of some building pleasure !

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