Saturday, May 27, 2017

Gudi 9215 Fire Rescuer Building Set Review

 Hey, welcome back, it's been awhile since I last posted.  I've got a whole bunch of building block sets to review.  Today we will look at the Gudi 9215 Fire Rescuer block set.  I ordered this set from Aliexpress back in February and finally got it last week (middle of May).

This Lego compatible set has 431 pieces. Here's all the pieces after I removed them from their bags.  There is a small sticker sheet for the fire engine.  There's also a useful transparent blue brick separator tool.

Four minifigures come with this building set.  Three of them are firemen and a male minifig who has a defective arm.

Unfortunately he got two left arms and is missing a hand.  I can replace his hand, but don't know if i can replace his arm or not.

All the firemen are laughing and making fun of him, so cruel.

Gudi skimped on the back printing of the minifigs.  They could of least printed the hoodie on the back of the yellow figure.

Yellow man's house is on fire, Help!  This building has lots of windows and doors and accessories, like a ladder, a lamp post and telephone.

Go ahead, just jump and we'll catch you.  Not sure if one can trust these firemen.  They don't even have a net.  I guess it's a good thing that there's no back wall on his house.

Um, yellow guy doesn't want to jump out of his flaming house.  Bring in the ladder truck please.

Despite so many different storage areas and cubbyholes on the fire truck, somebody forgot to bring the life saving equipment.  Got lots of fire extinguishers, though.

Check the back of the truck, maybe we got some equipment there.

Nope, sorry.

Try the other side of the truck.  Darn, so much room but all empty.

Ok, guess we will have to deploy the ladder.  Luckily the Gudi design is pretty good.  The turntable swivels around smoothly and doesn't fall off like the ones on Kazi brand blocks.

The main drawback with the ladder is there's no extension piece.

As you can see, the ladder can pivot quite high and is very sturdy.

 Ok, let's see if we can douse the flames with our water gun.  Um, Mister yellow man, you can just try to climb down the ladder in front of your house if you don't want to get wet.

Before I forget, the roof of the fire truck comes off easily to access the cab compartment.  Funny design though, the fireman doesn't get a chair, he has to stand to drive the truck.  The hose reel tucks back into the firetruck when not in use.

 Here's that sticker sheet that comes with the Fire Rescue set.

Final thoughts:  This Lego compatible set is a Gudi exclusive design, I think.  There's lots of play value in this set with the small two storey building and the fire truck that has so many different features.  I like the swivelling ladder and the fire hose and reel.  The truck comes with lots of storage, but not enough equipment.  You do get some fire extinguishers, a shovel and a walkie talkie though.
The fire truck has the Lego like rims and tires which is also nice.

The only minus is the defective minifigure I got.  If there's one improvement, I would make, it would be to add a ladder extension.  I paid about $10 USD for this set but the normal price on Aliexpress is about $20-30 USD if you search for Gudi 9215.  I think the store that I bought from made a pricing mistake.

 Well, that wraps up my review of the Gudi Fire Rescuer building block set.  Hope you liked it.

Brand:  Gudi
Model:  9215 Fire Rescuer with Building and Fire Truck
Number of minifigs: 4
Number of pieces:  431
Price paid:  about $10 USD from Aliexpress

Saturday, May 6, 2017

How I Fixed My Lepin Republic Dropship with AT-OT Bootleg Lego set 05053

Hi! Welcome back to  Belated Happy Star Wars day!  I was going to post this article on May the Fourth (Star Wars day), but I've been so busy/lazy I put it off until today. 

Anyways, I'm sure you have already seen quite a few reviews on the internet about the Lepin Star Plan Republic Dropship with AT-OT set 05053.  It's a fake copy of the same named Lego Star Wars set 10195.  From what I've read from the other reviews, there were numerous problems with parts coming drooping and coming off everywhere on this set.

I just got my Dropship set from Aliexpress last month, so instead of doing my regular review of this bootleg set, I thought I would let you know what I did to fix the problems instead.  Of course, I'll still be showing you how the build progressed in pictures.

So my set Lepin Dropship/AT-OT set came in a large cardboard box that got left at my front door by DHL (yay!  no duties this time!).   Packed tightly inside were lots of un-numbered bags of parts and a thick instruction manual.  The large sticker sheet that came with the set was taped inside the instruction manual.  It's still there, as I chose not to use any of the stickers.  BTW, I heard from other reviews that they're not all that great, so just as well.

Remember, that as I'm set building, I'm always on the lookout to see where I can substitute a new brick piece with some old or off-coloured brick I have in my spare stash.  Well, I managed to hide a couple of pieces inside the frame of the AT-OT walker.  

The AT-OT frame is sturdy enough but the back ramp needs to be fixed.  Firstly it's too steep for the clone troopers to ascend.  I would attach a ladder piece to the ramp so that they can get a foothold.

Secondly, whenever you bend it, one of the pieces comes off where the triangular plate meets the black rectangular plate.  My solution would be to make the base of the folding ramp entirely out of technic pieces, so that the current technic brick is hinged to another technic brick that would be attached underneath the black plate piece .  I have a design in mind, but don't currently have the pieces I need at the moment.

The next gripe I have is about the AT-OT walker lower legs which won't stay attached.  They keep coming loose and the legs just fall off.  I think it's design issue, in that the technic pin that holds the lower leg in place are too short to make a good insertion into the printed round plate.

My simple fix to this problem was to turn the technic pin around and insert it from outside in.  Then to secure it, you use a yellow technic bolt.  The printed plate sits nicely onto top of the reversed technic pin and it doesn't come off.

Here's how the legs look now.  They don't fall off anymore.

Another leg issue I had was the cylinder brick on the upper legs would fall off.  To fix this problem, I attached a light gray 1x3 plate across the two sides of the upper leg.

Sometimes the round feet would come off as well.  To rectify this, I added 5 extra 2x2 plates to each of the feet and this seemed to resolved my problem.  Note: you'll need a total of 40 pieces (5x 8 feet) if you plan on doing this too.

The remainder of the build was problem free until .....

... we got to the AT-OT cockpit.  I'm guessing the Lego fit and finish of the cockpit canopy glass had better tolerances than the Lepin canopy.  Whenever I went to flip the canopy open, inevitable the glass would come off the two black pivot pieces, because they were basically being held by 2 connection points and they were just too loose.  I'm surprised that no other Lepin dropship reviews indicated this was a problem, because this really bothered me.

I used three brick parts to fix this issue. One 1x3 finish plate, one 1x3 straight plate, and one 1x2 single stud.

Attach them altogether and place into the canopy like so.

Now, re-attach the canopy to the black pivots.  I now have 4 connection points instead of two and it holds the canopy glass in place quite securely.

Oh, one more nit I had (geez, I'm so anal!).  I didn't like that the cockpit canopy roof wasn't really secured.  I slightly redesigned the canopy roof and added a 1x2 stud piece as pictured below.

When you place the clamp down, it basically locks the cockpit canopy in place.

So as I finish building the AT-OT, the final issue is of course the droopy turret guns in the rear.  You'll notice that mine don't droop at all.

This was the simplest fix of all.  I simply ripped up some of the bags that the parts came in and shoved them into the ball socket.  I didn't trim them yet so you could see what I did.  Basically it gives some friction so that the turret ball won't move inside the socket, then you can freely position the guns as you wish.  And they will stay in place.

Ok, that was a really long post.  I'll wrap this up for now and in my next blog post, we will look at the assembling the Lepin dropship and fix whatever issues we find there.

Oh btw, I recall I had one or two missing pieces but they were fairly common plates or something, so I just scrounged up the replacement parts and continued building.  Nothing significant to hinder the progress of the build to this point.   Thanks for looking!!   Part Two coming soon.