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I have bought myself the technic set 9393 Tractor. I really like the model and I want to dig deeper into the Lego technic universe. I am not focused in building pre-designed models (although I enjoy it, and it would be a plus), but I want to have a decent set of technic parts, such that I can build models on my own. So what is the best way to get a basic set of bricks:

  • Buying some sets and take the parts from the sets? (rather buy a big set, or several small ones?)

  • Buying used parts as bulk?

  • Are there non-model technic sets, similar to the traditional Lego, for which they have door sets, wheels sets etc. ?

I know this question might be a bit broad. So let me add that I am not necessarily want to build motorized models right away. Also, I do not plan to build huge models, more in the size of the 9393 model.

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3 Answers 3

up vote 8 down vote accepted

Here are the two things that I would recommend:

  1. Get yourself a big set if you have the budget for it. These will have a large variety of pieces and once you've built the models from the instructions you'll have a good understanding of a lot of different building techniques.

  2. Watch eBay or similar sites for large lots of Technic parts by the pound. These can be a little hit or miss, but the price per piece is far lower than most other ways of buying parts. Keep in mind that prices tend to be higher around the holidays.

There used to parts packs for Technic like what you are describing, but I believe they were removed now that pretty much everything is available from Pick-A-Brick. You can also get any parts that you want from bricklink.com, and if you don't mind used parts, this can be a pretty affordable option.

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I support the idea of getting a big set first. Personally when I got back into LEGO Technic (for the purpose of using it with MindStorms) I got the 4x4 Off Roader (#8466, 1134 pieces) –  pcantin Dec 15 '12 at 18:13

I have to say I did the opposite and bought loads of small kits first and then larger kits later, however I did do a lot of research on the net and there are plenty of good books for reference material on individual mechanisms on Amazon (without having to buy lots of useless pieces for only specific functions on one kit only – can be quite expensive option). Ebay can fill up on specialised hard to get pieces and in a variety of colours too- although one has to wade through most of the junk available to find what one needs and it also depends on what you want to build? Bulk buying is a good use of this method – pick a brick can be expensive but the quality of the new bricks are without question.

Pinching plans of Technic kits from LEGO directly or from other fansites, is a good idea (with permission) to expand your knowledge of all the possibilities out there, too. Finally, I find that technical manuals from real machines are really good for inspiration like those cutaways from plane books are really useful or car repair books etc – so do your research first and ask around – lots out there...

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Coming to this late, as I am in the same kind of boat.

Options might be different in 2014 due to newer options for models.

I'm trying to find a nice few sets that can cover me for building almost anything else. Using rebrickable, adding models to a set and then looking at other Technic models (both official and MOC) will give you an idea of what sort of bits you want next. Also gives you suggestions on models to buy to up your % match.

8043 seems like a good set, but has 4 piddly M motors, which I guess is okay on top but on its own is a little lame, also the price for this retired model has gone INSANE.

So far I have gone with these three...

42030 Volvo L305F Wheel Loader

Got it for £131 new, has 2 remotes, various sized motors (including steering servo), actuators, bucket and some rather large wheels.

42009 Mobile Crane

Seems to be the largest model you can get for a good price (£105), has the most pieces in any Technic model so far (although apparently half of these are just pins!) but this brings another motor and battery box (sadly just 1, but still), diffs, a bunch of wheels and obviously lots of pieces.

I already own a few small (9391, 42001) and a mid sized model (80690, buckets, wheels small LA)

42028 Bulldozer

Recently bought this for £25 as a present, really good price, just been looking at how much track is to buy on its own and its not much less than this. Although its ~14 short of building the 8043 (and I'm guessing short of a lot of MOCs) but its a start, at least you get extra parts. Could buy 2!

Hopefully they, obviously large will be a good start.

Ideally what I personally want next is:

  • A proportional remote, the train sets include these + the "smaller" battery box that a lot of people use, although the big designers often have the rechargeable boxes, the 6xAAA are drop in replacements (mostly, assuming they haven't made use of the reversal pin). Im not sure I will do this though as I don't think the lad will like me gutting a train (and I don't want to stretch to two!)

  • Pneumatic kit, no sets seem to have a lot in them. ile9os on ebay has a VERY nice "pro" set. I wish they had more than 1 mini-pump in the collection, sadly to get 3 (to make a total of 4) from bricklink the price goes up when you have someone that has a quantity you want (bricklink is kind of a pain for that).

  • Steering kit, there are a few different types so looking at smaller models for these.

  • Springs, I'm keeping an eye out on deals of smaller Technic non motorised sets for these.

  • Wheels, but I'm going to resist buying them on their own though as you can easily get these on smaller models, and will eventually be overrun with them (as I am with non-Technic LEGO since I decided to buy a batch lot and later on... I have too many!)

  • More clutch gear, the above has some in but would like more, the crane has a lot in because it has one motor for all the functions. Service truck seems to be another and has some pneumatic kit - personally don't like that model though and I'm not sure about the price (still watching)

42005 seems to be good for steering ball joint(x2) small springs(x4) "steering arms"(x4) steering rack(x2) knobwheel(x2). All that would cost you around £20.45 on ebay at a quick glance, and has sold as low as £23 on amazon (currently £33, I'm going to hold out for sub-£27) and it has 327 parts. You can see why people buy and part out to sell.

btw for the likes of Amazon, get onto camelcamelcamel and set a LOT of "crazy" price alerts and sit on them for a long time.

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LEGO Education still sells a Pneumatics set shop.education.lego.com/legoed/en-US/catalog/… –  Nathan Stohlmann 2 days ago

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