Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Sembo Blocks Hong Kong Flats Building Set Review 601095

Hello not Lego fans!  Today, I'm reviewing the Sembo Hong Kong flats set number 601095.  This set consists of two building facades representing some small shops with apartments above them.  There is another set 601096 that has the same theme but with buildings that have tan and white building facades.  I chose to buy 601095 because this set is more colourful with the sand green and dark orange bricks used.

On the back cover of the instruction manual, you get an idea of how both sets 601095 and 601096 would look like side by side.

There are supposed to be 570 pieces in this set and comes with five minifigures.

There are six bags numbered as 1.1 through 1.6.

Then there are 4 bags numbered 2.1 through 2.4.  There are also 3 unnumbered bags, containing the baseplates, minifigures and a bag for a light strips and battery.

Here's the stickers Sembo provides to adorn the Hong Kong flats.  I didn't use any of them on my set yet.  I also didn't use the LED light strips because I plan to deconstruct this set pretty soon.

Here are some of the leftover pieces that were extras or that I didn't use.  The technic pins are used to attach 601095 and 601096 sets together.

There are 5 minifigures included with the Hong Kong flats consisting of a police officer, two male pedestrians and two female pedestrians.  The torso prints are bright and properly aligned, however there's no leg printing.  With the exception of the yellow hoodie guy, everyone else looks like they're scowling, which is pretty much on point if you've ever walked along a busy street in Hong Kong.  The green shirt guy has a strange gray mark on his lips. That would be the only defect I could find.

The completed shops and apartments. I guess I would have to recommend using the provided stickers otherwise these buildings do look kind of bland without them.

Here's the backside of the set.  There's just enough room to allow a minifigure to pose there.  Interior accessories include a cooking area with woks and sauce bottles for one shop and a counter for the other.  Three of the four apartments above are each furnished with a table.

The sand green building is 5 studs deep, with the shop below being a mere 4 studs deep.

The dark orange building is only 4 studs deep overall.

The building facades look ok if you were to just display this set on it's on or with the 601096 set.  But when you display it with other Lego style modular buildings, you definitely notice that the design of these flats are a lot small in size.  The three floors of the Sembo flats equals the height of 2 storeys on a standard Lego style modular building.

Here's the final look at set 601095.  As mentioned earlier, I will probably re-build this set with extra bricks to increase the height and depth of the two buildings.  They will also be placed on a regular sized baseplate as well so I can put a sidewalk in front of the buildings.  At that point, I may entertain putting some of the stickers on the buildings to make them look more realistic.

Thursday, April 8, 2021

Happy Build Photo Studio Modular Building YC-20006 Review - Part One

Hi there!  If you are new here, welcome!  If not, welcome back to Its Not Lego, my blog where I review the latest alternative Lego building sets.   Don't forget to check out my other blog Bricks and Figs, where I show you my latest custom brick creations and minifigure collection.

Today, I will be reviewing a new modular building.  It's the Photo Studio by another new brand called Happy Build, set number YC-20006.  There's a website displayed on the front cover of the instruction manual, www.xq-toys.com.  It looks like they focus more on Radio Control cars than blocks.  Not sure if they are branching out into other toy lines or not.  Anyways, I didn't see any other building block sets on their website.


    Model: YC-20006 Photography Studio
    Brand: Happy Build
    Pieces: 1773 pieces
    Minifigures included:  Four
    Fake Lego?  No.
    Missing Parts: N/ Deformed pieces: N/ Scratched pieces: N
    #itsnotlego Rating:  5 out of 5 stars.   Excellent brick quality.  Unique concept with the opening walls.  Highly recommend.   The set comes with a huge sticker sheet.

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I'm going to split up this blog post into two parts because I have so many pictures.  In this post, part one, I'll review the set contents and some build pics along the way.  Part two of the blog post will show you the exterior and interior of the completed Photo studio.   Click here, if you want to skip the construction photos.  Ok, let's get into it!

Unpacking the parts

My set arrived tightly packed in a box and was pretty heavy considering it's only a half size modular building, ie. it only sits on a 16x32 stud baseplate.

Happy Build gives you a lot of options to sticker up your set if you want.  I'm going to only use a few of the stickers and keep the rest for future builds.

Here's the baseplate and the bag of minifigures.  Good to know that the baseplate isn't warped like some of the past sets from other brands.

The minifigures come partially assembled, but you'll have to put the arms and hands on yourself.  

I should mention that the instruction manual is good quality with clear, easy to follow instructions.  There are 5 sections in the manual to complete the photo studio and brick parts are divided into bags according to those sections.

These are the parts bags for section one.   Four bags as you can see.

The pieces from section one will build the modular foundation and part of the phot studio's first storey.

There are five bags of parts for section two.  

All the brick pieces in section two will complete the first storey of the building.

Section three consists of seven bags.

The entire second floor of the photo studio is built by section three.

Section four has four bags of parts.

These parts will build the third floor and the roof of the photo studio.

There are six bags of parts for the final section.

What's unique about the Happy Build modular is that they give you extra pieces to build the photo studio in different ways.  As shown on the cover, you can make the studio have a modern look or a vintage look.

Let's Build!

As mentioned earlier, there are four Lego style minifigures that come with the set.  Three males and one female.  The torso prints all look pretty good.  The faces show a lot of expression, but I dunno if I like the guy in the suit, he kind of reminds me of Fred Flintstone.

The First Floor

Here you can see the construction technique used to elevate the first storey.  The floor is built separately and drops into place.  I like the colour combination used.

This is how the photo studio looks after completing section one.  You can connect this building up to other Lego compatible buildings via the provided technic pins.
The first floor is the meeting room with three chairs and a table.  There's also an old style cash register.  Outside, the light post design is different than the Lego version.
I think it looks pretty good.

Here's a pleasant surprise, the window glass is super clear and not scuffed, scratched or foggy.  I should also add that the brick clutch and colours are great.

With the parts from section two, the first storey is almost complete.  More interior details are added with a coffee counter and coffee maker, a potted plant and a very unique winding staircase.  The staircase is surprisingly sturdy once constructed.  While it looks interesting, I think I'm still partial to the regular staircase.

The Second Floor

Now, onto building the second floor.  This is where the photography magic happens. One thing I really like about this Happy Build set is the fact that every storey has tiled flooring, not just bare studs.  It really gives it a finished look.  In the above pic, the photo wall has been assembled and installed.

And here are some of the accessories that go into the second floor.  There's another spiral staircase that is identical to the one found on the first floor.  There's also a railing for the stairwell.  Photo Studio accessories are a camera with zoom lens, a light stand and a rack of clothes for changes between photo shoots.   I actually got 2 tops of each colour, making 6 tops in total, but there's only room on the clothing rack for 3.

Additional second floor accessories include a makeup table and stool, with mirror.

The Third Floor

As with the previous sections, the third storey floor is covered in tiles.

The third floor is a loft where the photographer will use his computer to edit and prepare the photos for his customers.  There's a desk, chair with monitor.  That round tile on the desk could be a mouse or it might be a Google Home Mini!   What's behind that turquoise door, I wonder?

I'm going to leave you guessing what it is, as I'm going to end part one of this blog post here!   Let me know what you think of the build so far in the comment box below.

Thanks for looking!  See you in part two of the Happy Build Photography Studio review!   Lots more photos for you to enjoy.

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Saturday, January 2, 2021

Here's all the Not Lego sets I bought in 2020!

 Here's all the Not Lego sets I bought in 2020

Hey there brick fans, welcome to my first post in 2021 on my blog Its Not Lego.   As the blog post title indicates, this is just a quick list of all the not Lego building sets I've purchased last year.  

Some sets are knockoffs of existing Lego sets such as the Bela brand 11053 Yacht or 11342 Harry Potter Bus.   Other sets are unique China designs such as the Sembo 102348 SWAT truck or the Urge 10180 Bakery modular building.  I also added a couple of MOC design sets to my collection, including the Jerac TIE Bomber and the Kristel Cast Iron modular building.

On the topic of MOCs, I customized a lot of my own sets too last year.   I converted the King 84008 Green Grocer into a cool police station for my not Lego city.  I used the original Zhe Gao QL0935 set and transformed it into a fully furnished modular building.   You can find more example of my MOC builds on my other blog Bricks and Figs.

Here's the list of sets which I bought in chronological order throughout 2020.   I haven't gotten around to reviewing each building set, but if I did there will be a link next to the set name.

Sembo 102348 SWAT truck

Bela/Lari 11053 yacht

Sluban B0780 Recycling truck   (link)

Sembo 601070 Crab Shop   (link)

Lepin 45012 Rexplorer

Qman 1132 Bun shop  (link)

Bela/Lari 11342 Potter bus (link)

King 84008 Green Grocer

Zhe Gao QL0935 Hill Tavern    (link)

Sembo 107007 Troop Carrier

Sembo 601075 Sakura Tree

Sembo 601303 Ambulance

Lepin 05145 X-Wing

Sembo 601078 Japanese food stalls

MOC 13952 TIE Bomber  (link)

Jack JJ001 Central Perk

Decool 2113 Osprey Chopper   (link)

Bela/Lari 11429 Snowspeeder

MOC C4228 Cast Iron modular

Rael 10004 Bike Shop (unbuilt)

Urge 10180 Bake Shop

Lele Bros 8613 Food cart

Hsanhe 31001 Train station

Xingbao XB01013 Urban village (unbuilt)

Total of 24 sets - average of 2 sets per month during 2020.   As you can see, 2020 kept me pretty busy building with not Lego.   Hopefully it will continue in 2021!

That's it for this quickie post.   Thanks for looking and see you in the next blog post,