Editors note: The Bricklink AFOL (Adult Fan of LEGO) Designer Program took place over 2018-19. Fans were asked to submit designs to the website www.bricklink.com an online fan based re-sale and parts buy/sell platform. Bricklink collaborated with The LEGO Group to make this program happen. Very limited qualifying sets were available via a crowdfunding type purchase program. You can see the qualifying sets HERE The Vintage Fire Engine was designed by Boon Langston
After a long wait in anticipation the Antique Fire Engine finally arrived. Here’s my review of the kit and build. The packaging design and presentation is beautiful. There is the main box, which came sealed with tamper proof tape. An outer sleeve fit over it with the picture of the fire engine itself, and the kit number was noted on the front (as there were only a limited amount produced). At 1278 pieces, it sits on average for creator style vehicle kits I’ve done before.
Opening up the box I found that the bags were well marked, 1a to 1c, 2a to 2c, 3a to 3c. This matches up with the instruction book, which indicates ‘1’, to open up those bags etc, in similar fashion to a normal Lego kit. Once I saw the tyres, I soon realised it was much bigger than I had anticipated from the photos! It’s probably a bit over a foot long. This particular kit came with quite a large instruction booklet, but is nicely ring-bound, so can be opened and folded back to a single page at a time. There is also a neat limited edition printed 2×4 red brick, which is printed with 60th anniversary, a nice touch. Following the instructions was as you’d expect, and very much the same as usual. The only problem I did find was the colour matching of some colours to the printed colour in the book. The blues look purple in the book, and had me second guessing if I had the right pieces on occasion.
One thing I loved was the use of brightly coloured bricks, which were generally all hidden, so similar to the Steamboat Willy set. It was almost like it was ‘because we can and it’s fun to add colour’. I’m told it so that you can distinguish the brick placement easily, but I like to think it’s just a fun element. There were some great build techniques, some I hadn’t seen before, and certainly wouldn’t have thought of! Especially to get the cute little headlights in vintage style. After completing the main chassis section, you move on to the engine area. The engine looks great along with a classic vintage looking grill, and the two sides of the ‘hood’ open up to show the engine inside. No moving parts on this one, but I don’t think it needs that (more of a Technic Lego thing).
Next is the rear deck, using the bright colours as mentioned earlier, and tan and light brown tiles to give a wooden effect. There is an old style fire extinguisher for one side and the removable ladder and a fire bell behind the seats, which are also beautifully recreated. Probably the only downer is the ‘hose’ or lack of. I would have liked to have seen a large roll out hose, such as these examples below. I can see though, that the aim was to replicate the straight link together hoses seen on many examples. It just seems like the back deck is empty and missing something.
Overall it was great model to build and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It took me a couple of stints of and hour or two, probably about 3-4 hours all up to complete. The final result is a beautiful, bright red recreation of a classic vehicle, now proudly on display with my other vehicles! Highly recommended, and was great value at $149USD ($230NZD).
All images by Dan Bellhouse unless otherwise stated.