We got first info about three models to come (8051, 8052 and 8053) an later started the rumors about a 4th set, which turned into a magnificent remote controlled 8043 Excavator.
Still don't know what really happened with this poll... , but whatever it was, may have not been a coincidence.
Now taken the previous descriptions and the new images, lets dig into the new models.
So far no new functional parts have been identified in these. Perhaps only a new design for the rims in the bike below.
This looks a very realistic Race Bike, in the same style of the previous 8420 Street Bike, released in 2005.
It features the same fantastic tires as its predecessor but the rims themselves look to have a new design. Hopefully symmetrical this time.
As before it also get a transmission chain and rear suspension. However I have doubts the the rear shock absorber can be again this magnificent fat 11.5L version, but instead one 6.5L Hard Spring.
Additionally for this new bike version we also get a suspension for the front and steered wheel. Much like in the 8291 Dirt Bike, using 9.5L black abosrbers.
Unlike the 8420 which got a V4 engine, this new bike got 3 cylinders. Most likely a transversal inline V3.
It looks to have two dummy headlights and two panel displays, made of 2x2 round tiles in white.
The bike is predominately red. It has also some of the new small fairing panels (#1 and #2 versions) in black, however mostly covered by red stickers. May you want to not apply them, and get a slightly different version.
The B-model will be a chopper.
The partcount for this model is not yet available, but I estimate it could be in the range of 400-500 parts.
8052: Container Truck
When first red about this I imagined a truck transporting a real container. Well I guessed wrong, but this is still a very cool model.
My belief is that for the size, this a set with a very good playability, while with its "container" loading mechanism it is an original and first ever design into the Technic product line.
It is a model mainly colored blue for the truck cabin and parts of the "container", which is a good chance to get the first blue versions since the new panels line was introduced the last year. As usual the chassis is a combination of black and gray elements but we also get the 11x3 curved panels in a new color (one of the gray shades - Light Bluish Gray, I guess). The final touch is achieved with the application of a few stickers, if you like.
This is a Power Functions set of the box, which includes one conventional PF battery box and one M-Motor, thus in the line of several motorized trucks from the last two years, like 8292 (Cherry Picker) and 8264 (Hauler).
The model offers a reasonable set of functions for the size, which includes the front axle steering through HoG function and a skip with tipping and load/unload functions. Much like the Hook Lift Truck guessed at EB when discussions about this model started, or the Skip Truck by the mythic Jennifer Clark (1, 2).
The skip movement handling is assured by the usage of one Linear Actuator, and the two functions (tipping, load/unload) would require the action of some driving ring mechanism, whose lever is hardly seen at the current image.
For the moment I don't see any evidence supporting the usage of multiple Linear Actuators, unlike suggested by the previous description found.
Can be built into a Dump truck, as B-model.
My best guess for this model partcount, would be around 600-700 parts.
8053: Mobile Crane
At first glance it looks a re-edition from the great 8421 Mobile Crane, from 2005. However it is noticeable the downsize remake from this mythical model and as far as we can see from the box image it doesn't include any PF elements, thus lacking motorized functions out of the box.
Rests to know if it includes any instructions for motorization with the official PF Motor Kit (8293), otherwise I'm sure someone else will do it.
The obvious conclusion is that all the functions are manually operated, like raising and extending the crane, or opening the stabilizers. Probably through a rear wheel like in many other Technic models.
Compared to its larger brother, it includes the same type of chassis with 8 wheels (all steered), but of smaller size, balloon type and black rims this time.
The crane is now raised with a single linear actuator, but we must realize that each LA has a longer reach than one pneumatic cylinder. Thus avoiding the usage of a back-to-back setup similar to the one used with the 8421 pneumatic cylinders. Because this model is smaller, this configuration should also work seamlessly.
The telescopic arm seams to have just two sections, while 8421 had three. However if the description found is correct, this still extends up to 60 centimeters while the 8421 arm extended for 64cm, according to the official description from LEGO. The hook is now made of discrete parts, unlike the steel one used on the previous mobile crane.
The 8421 used the battery box as counter-weight, which makes me wonder what is used in this model to sustain the long arm when extended. Maybe a couple 73090b Boat Weights!?
The four stabilizers open in a star like configuration, which is a debut in terms of official LEGO Technic sets. This system is operated from a gear (wheel) at the backside of the model. The outriggers themselves are also independently and manually operated and each one has its own mechanism with a worm gear used to firmly push the base against the ground. The worm characteristics guarantee that outriggers won't pullback themselves by action of the model weight.
The color used is the typical for this type of machinery (yellow again), however it would have been a good opportunity to make something different, if using of a different color schema. There are also some stickers to be applied in the model, for a more realistic finish.
The visible functions at this moment, are:
- Raising crane arm
- Extendable crane arm
- Lower/raising hook
- Rotating crane
- Opening stabilizers, in star like configuration
- 4 individual adjustable outriggers
- 4 axle chassis with all steering wheels
With the B-model instructions, you will be able to build an Harbor Crane.
Again, my best guess goes for about 1200-1400 parts being used in this model.
The fourth Technic set for the 2H2010, turned to be a very promising and fully remote controlled Excavator.
A long waited dream, in my personal wishlist.
My first comment goes to the fact that after the release of 8258 (Crane Truck) in 2009, this constitutes an unquestionable break with a presumable evidence claimed by many of us, where TLG seems to have been releasing a major Technic flagship every two years. Probably nothing more than a coincidence, but it has been more or less consistent since at least the year 2001. Such pattern becomes more irregular and less evident as we visit the antecedent years.
This set is a major enlargement to the previous Excavator (8294) from 2008, which was also a tremendous success among fans. It was even MODed to become fully motorized, by many of us.
As we can see from the image above this is a model from a common type of Hydraulic Excavator, with: a tracked undercarriage, cab, main body with engine/hydraulic pump and counterweight, boom, digging arm (dipper) and bucket.
The arm elements (boom, dipper and bucket) are controlled with 4 LEGO Linear Actuators, being two of them used to set the boom position where higher torque forces are applied - They must work in a synchronous setup, by some mechanical artifact (Section 5.3 from TBs Linear Actuators review - Part II).
The used main color for this model is yellow again and we can see several from the new fairing panels being used. Another good opportunity lost, to re-introduce the orange color into the Technic theme, despite I admit that may never happen for a couple of very good reasons...
From the diagrams in the box, it is easily visible this Excavator will feature all possible degrees of freedom in such type of model:
- Forward/backward drive with turn
- Cab rotation
- Articulated Boom
- Articulated Dipper
- Articulated Bucket
From a simplistic POV this model mechanisms would require 6 motors, to be independent and simultaneously operated. However from the PF orange band in the box we see it differently.
If I’m seeing it right, the list of PF elements this model will include are:
- 1x PF Battery box (8881)
- 2x PF IR Receivers (8884) – 4 channels
- 4x PF M-Motors (8883)
- 2x PF IR Remotes (8885)
This is however not consistent with what can be expected from such large model, neither with the function diagrams exhibited in the box image, that illustrate all the model possible types of movements…
So we should expect some level of sophistication used by the Designers, to address and solve this challenge or apparent problem.
I’ve just considered two sets of scenarios as being worthy to comment. One with combined functions, thus reducing the number of independent degrees of freedom and another where a set of driving rings are used to switch across the functions controlled by the two remotes.
In the first scenario we would have two motors for the drivetrain, a third motor for superstructure rotation and the fourth could drive the boom, dipper and bucket, all together. While possible, this looks very unlikely in such a flagship model.
The second set of scenarios could consist of a manual lever (again very unlikely) to switch functions from 2 motors (2 in 4), while IR remotes control the set of 4 functions engaged in each moment (2+2x2, e.g. cab, boom, dipper and bucket, or 2 for the drivetrain, cab and bucket).
Alternatively yet another and more sophisticated schema could be used, like the one also proposed by Jovel in the comments to this post (while I’ve been writing the sections for each model). One motor would be used to control 3 driving rings (linked and switching simultaneously), while the 3 remaining motors would be used to control the remaining sections (1+2x3):
- 2 in de drivetrain and 1 for the turntable moving the superstructure (3 in total),
OR (after using the first motor to switch functions)
- 1 for each of the 3 arm movements (again 3 in total).
We will see which of these, or if any other solution was chosen to control this model. Despite the 1+2x3 to be my preferred solution.
Considering that at least some motors could be shared between two functions and the respective most probable combinations, the logical place to have all them located would be inside the Excavator main body.
The first consequence from this, is that like in Jennifer Clark JCB JS220 Excavator, two functions would need to be delivered trough the model turntable. If it turns to be the case (most likely), it will be the second time such technique will be used into an official LEGO Technic model after a first appearance into 8258 from 2009.
It would then rests to know if the drivetrain will feature a Differential Drive or a Dual-Differential Drive (DDD). Although I believe the first option to be the one chosen, in order to maximize the power delivered to this large model (presumably heavy) and to make it move easier.
One comment also to the bucket... Since ever it seems LEGO is only delivering well proportioned buckets for small/medium sized excavators (8851, 8837, 8419 and 8047). Anything larger than these, like 8294, is getting wider buckets primarily designed for the LEGO loaders.
I believe this would have been also a very good opportunity for LEGO to give us a modern design from the old bucket (4700) used in 8851 and 8862. While this would make sense for official Technic models too, it would be of great use for many AFOLs trying their own Excavators and Backhoes MOCs.
Nevertheless maybe this can be an hint, for the yet unknown 8043 B-model, that we can expect. Another Loader.
After all, I still dream with a day when LEGO Technic releases a fully remote controlled Excavator, using pneumatic cylinders and more advanced pneumatic elements like PF electro-pneumatic valves. Thus avoiding the usual tethered pneumatic remotes. Such valves could however be also applied into a new generation from the wonderful 8455 Backhoe and many other models based on pneumatic elements…
But as far as it seems, the 8049 (Tractor with Log Loader) was the only pneumatic model to be offered us in 2010.
Can we now guess which where the LEGO Designers, behind each one of these models?
As for the price and partcount who makes their best guess too? 1800 parts... 2000?
Some new findings, may turn obsolete many from the above comments about the 8043 Excavator.
You may find worth reading, this newer post.
Last Update: 2009.Dec.26 19:45 CET
and finally, the 7939 / 7938: Power Functions Trains (from CITY Theme)
These are the first complete PF trains (out of the box) to be released by LEGO. They succeed the previous RC Trains system, which had already made a break with the “old” 9V Trains system, based on metalic and powered lines.
In 2009 we had a sort of "sneak preview” with the Emerald Night (10194) launch. This was mainly targeted to the AFOL segment and designed to guarantee from those, a good acceptance to the newly proposed trains PF system. However the EN does not include any of the PF elements required to motorize it, which must be acquired in separate kits. This is of course a strategy not suitable for the Trains in the CITY line, targeting boys aged 6-12.
Thus, the new CITY Trains include all the necessary PF elements for their motorization, as we can see from the typical PF orange band seen in the Passenger and Cargo Train boxes.
Each box includes 16 from the new flexible track system together with an assortment of track elements, which differ depending on the train set (Passenger or Cargo).
From the same orange band we can see there are also included one IR Speed Remote Control (8879), one Train motor (8866, the same used in former RC Trains), one PF IR Receiver (8884) and a battery box.
Once we can't see any image from the 10V DC Transformer (8887) on the orange band and the cost from a PF Rechargeable Battery Box (8878) would take a considerable part from each set cost, I guess the battery image is not what it seems to be... Hence I believe we have here being introduced a new PF element - A new type of PF Battery Box with the same form factor of the existing rechargeable version.
If this confirms to be the case, it might take Micro AAA cells, once 6x AA cells won't fit inside. Also it means that with the actual AAA rechargeable batteries available on the market, it would have a similar capacity to the standard LPF LiPo rechargeable battery (1100 mAh) and voltage (7,4V).
At least for some European countries, the expected train sets price is:
- 7938: 119,95€
- 7939: 169,95€
Eagerly waiting to know more and the summer to arrive, in order to play with the new Excavator.