Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A Primer on Good Sets for Parts

It seems lately that some people are confused about why I recommend certain Lego sets as being "good for parts" and not others.  And, to be honest, I was a little annoyed by these questions.  After thinking for most of the day I realized that not everyone sees things the way I do and I've been involved in this hobby for a number of years while others are new to it.
So, on to the questions.

"What are "fiddly bits?""

These are all the fun pieces that we use to build mechs.

"There's really no note about which of those are really best."

This is subjective.  The one that is best has the parts you need right at that moment.

"How many Mech you can really make from it.", "How many mechs can I build if I buy just one set?"

This is also subjective.  What's your skill level?  What are you trying to build?  What scale are you building in?  Different designs take different amounts of parts.  If you want to build a more complex design it's going to take more parts.

"How many different sets will it take to build one of the mechs in the book?"

I don't know.  I haven't done the research.  If you're looking to build mechs from the book why not try the Garage Kit?  It was designed to create five mechs from one of the factions in the game.

"What parts will I be missing?"

Again, I don't know.

You wrote "Where do I actually buy these?"

Toys'R'Us, Target, Walmart, Barnes & Noble, 5 Below, etc.  are all stores in my area that carry Lego.  It depends where you live and what the retail presence in your area is like.

"The link sends me to bricklink but there's no option to actually buy these things?"

The link to Bricklink is there so you can look at the inventory of the set and decide for yourself if it's worth buying.  If you click on the Set number on the inventory page it will bring you to another page where you can then navigate to "lots for sale".

"I went to the nearest toy store I could find and when I asked for the first list linked they didn't have anyof the sets. The woman behind the counter said that they'd all been discontinued."

The list was started a year before the blog even existed.  I've been posting for a year and a half.  Lego releases new sets and discontinues old ones every six months.  Which means that we've gone through at least five inventory cycles since this list was started.  So, yes, those first sets are discontinued.  I'll try and update the list to make it a little clearer.

"I'm getting really frustrated with people just tossing me links without any actual explanation about why these sets are good."

They're good because they contain good parts for building in microscale at a good price.  That's it.  The most I can tell people is "look at this set, it has good parts for a good price".

"There's a local Lego store not that far from my place. Am I better off just going there and rummaging through the pick-a-brick section?"

You can try, but in general the Pick-A-Brick wall is aimed more at kids than the adult builder.  You will be able to pick up a lot of bricks for terrain and cover though.

I hope these answers help people understand my GSfP posts.


  1. There are 3 Lego stores in the greater Los Angeles area that I have occasion to visit regularly. Never in the years since I discovered Mechaton, have they had any pieces useful for building frames. They might have one, but never enough to justify a whole cup.

  2. Please don't change what you're doing. I think your posts are great, and I know there are others who feel the same. It's more, "hey these parts are great to use in your mechs, imo" then "click here to buy this kit guaranteed to build you x number of frames".

    I'm someone who collected a lot of legos as a kid, and now I'm getting back into as an adult, with the interest of building frames, and your posts and observations are great in helping me find the kinda parts I want to build with :)

    So, thank you for your awesome site, and keep up the great work!
    Don't let these people get you down.