Written in late 2019 during back-log review of Lego interest
While I was scooping up deals on Star Wars critters, a local estate-sale company started listing dozens of Lego sets on an online auction site. I missed most of the first round, even though many lots went for $1 or $2. I wasn’t particularly interested in them, but figured if I could get them for a buck, they’d be worth it for the parts. For the second round, I was more successful, and I got a LOT of parts. Let’s dig in.
The one set I did get from the first round was the 70818-Lego Movie’s Double-Decker Couch. My kids put it together while I was on my trip and sent me this picture of Ghost Vitruvius with an actual half-eaten sucker. It is also a great set containing many minifigs. Even though I already had Emmet and Unikitty from Lego Dimensions, Ghost Vitruvius, Lord Business, and Benny were great additions. L has taken a particular fondness for having Benny operate some of my heavy Technic machinery…. but I’m getting ahead of myself…
Included with the double-decker couch was an incomplete Hobbit set and an “unmarked set”. I figured it’d be good for parts, but once I did some sleuthing on the adorable little pig-like face plate, I discovered it was 2110, a Minecraft “micro world” set called “The Village”. Again, not something I’d pick up for myself, but for a couple of bucks, you can’t go wrong. And it wasn’t even missing any pieces!
The second round of estate sale lots contained even more lego sets. This time I went a bit overboard, bidding $1-2 on every one of the 30 lots they had. I got a little worried / excited that I might win them all, but of course as bidding closed, most started getting picked up by others. I did get two of my initial buck-or-two purchases. The first was 7067 – a “Jet-Copter Encounter” set from the “Alien Conquest” line. Actually a pretty decent number of parts that originally retailed for $40, but unlike the big Star Wars sets, doesn’t really go up in value. The other was practically a steal – it wasn’t labeled well – looked more like action figures, but I could tell it included a variable-speed IR remote, something that can go for $10-15 or more on Bricklink. I won it for $1 and discovered the other parts made a Bionicle action figure – something I didn’t even realize was Lego. I made my nephew’s day when I gave it to him at a family gathering.
Another set I picked up more for the kids was a 3-in-1 lighthouse set 5770. This set included a light-brick (though apparently they’re pretty cheap on Bricklink… plus we already had one in another set; oh well) that needed a battery. Whew these guys are tiny! On the plus side, after buying a replacement, I now have 38 spare LR-41 batteries if anyone needs one….
The true prize of the 2nd haul was 42029 – Customized Pickup Truck. This 1000+ piece Technic set would be more than twice as complex as any set I had so far and even had instructions for motorizing! Alas, I didn’t get it for the original couple-bucks, but I did get it for about 1/5 the original retail price. Not too bad. After having my dad & daughters destroy it (so I couldn’t see how it worked), I built it from the ground up, having an amazing experience doing so. I experienced my first Technic gear-differential (finally learning what that even means…. I was never much of a gearhead…!), first working V6 engine (pistons that move up-and-down as the wheels roll), first spring suspension, first mechanism for engaging/disengaging different gears, and so much more. The motorization was a little lackluster, as it only operated the winch and lifting bed, but it gave me the chance to see how motors interacted with sets, including how swapping a couple of gears can greatly enhance the operation.
Finally, I thought I might have stumbled onto a great way to work on a Lego city without breaking the bank with $200 modulars – using mini-modulars! One of the sets was a complete collection of 8 different mini-modular sets given out with certain purchases during Toys-R-Us special events. While, unfortunately, the sets were missing all of the tiny vehicles that originally came with them, they were wonderful to, once again, share building tasks with each of my girls. I’m not