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I've recently bought bulk parts, and wish to sort out the official LEGO pieces from the inferior quality 3rd party clones.

On bricks I can easily spot-out the clones, becasue they don't sport the "LEGO" logo on the studs.

So, I'm looking for an easy way to spot-out fakes on non-studded pieces like this Technic Bushing: enter image description here

My tip off is that some of the Bushings don't grip well to various axles, thus giving me the idea that these Bushings too, might be some inferior quality 3rd party clones.

Some of the Bushings have VERY tiny writings with the "LEGO" logo.

  • Does this mean all pieces without the logo are clones?
  • Has LEGO branded all parts (even the smallest) with a logo?
  • Has it been doing so from many years back?

I suspect it could be more complicated, for example, many stud-less parts like this thin part: https://www.bricklink.com/v2/catalog/catalogitem.page?P=32250#T=P

have some numbers and the copyright "(c)" sign, but no "LEGO" logo. I've checked many pieces. Some large ones have "LEGO Group" written on it.

So, regarding authenticity, would the logo matter?

Maybe I'm into perfection too much, but I'd like to sort-out my collection form the fakes, and preferably without breaking out the 10x monocle lens.

What would you advice?

enter image description here

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Regarding the Bushings, I think the loss of their gripping/clutching power has less to due with a phantom cloning agent, and more to due with the quality of the official LEGO piece, and how plastic degrades over time.

My collection has Bushings that are weak too, but its due to age (over 25+ years) and normal play. Mine are not clones.

Now the issue with copyright holders is a little different. LEGO doesn't hold the patent design for the classic brick, becasue they didn't invent it, so now it's a friggin' free for all with clone "bricks" manufacturers.

As for non-brick designs like the Technic Bush, and that thin blue piece, LEGO owns those, and could bring forward litigation to copyright infringers.

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  • Thank you for making my question so better looking! Copyrights were interesting to read about. One point though: my bashes w/out 'lego' fineprint actually not weak but too tight and require very much force to fit. Commented Dec 8, 2018 at 11:44
  • You're welcome, Friend, I mainly wanted to capture the essence of what your post was driving at, while keeping as much of your original individual voice as possible, but I did embellished a little with the monocle pic;). I know I didn't address every question, and went straight to offering a little advice. As for the too tightness, that's the way I wish mine were. Try this: Use a Q-Tip and dab a small amount of petroleum jelly on the axle shaft. Use a holed Technic plate or brick to create a wider surface area to concentrate the pushing force of the axle through the bushing. Commented Dec 8, 2018 at 14:46
  • You seem to be mixing up copyrights and patents. AIUI copyrights general protect creative works, a model most likely qualifies but an individual functional element much less so. Patents can protect functional elements but they generally expire after around 20 years (exact rules vary by country) so most of the key lego elements will be well out of patent protection. There are also trademarks, but Legos attempt to use those to protect functional elements didn't go so well. Commented Mar 15, 2023 at 21:16

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