4 of 11 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars
Very disappointing, 18 Jan 2011
= Durability:2.0 out of 5 stars = Fun:2.0 out of 5 stars = Educational:2.0 out of 5 stars
We bought this Cranky toy for our 3 year old (Jack) for Christmas after he had a dream that he had a Cranky in Mummy and Daddy's bedroom and was distraught to discover that he didn't. He was reassured that "Farmer Christmas" would bring Cranky and patiently waited about 2 months for it. I was really excited wrapping up the box on Christmas Eve and was half-tempted to wake him up to give it to him!
However, we have been really disappointed with it, and feel the price is not entirely worth it. If I'd tried this toy in a shop, I would not have bought it. There is another Cranky toy, but I don't know if that has similar problems - would have had to buy one of them, though, regardless.
Our little boy does like this toy and plays with it a lot, but does not use the lifting function properly, as it is quite rubbish! We are disappointed for the following reasons:
a) the barge and 2 barrels were missing. Luckily Jack didn't know they were meant to be there. The Salty engine at least adds some value for money, and was also on Jack's wishlist, so that killed two birds, at least. Just read on the other review that Salty stays in place when the toy is folded - will have to try that, but otherwise, you can't carry engines around in it.
b)The pictures on the box imply there is a blue "water" area around Cranky. There is not! It is just a gap, so your floor has to be the water.
c) This also makes the toy not very portable, despite being advertised as being portable - if you have several engines with it, they all fall out when you fold and carry it. Though as I say, I will try storing Salty under the bridge. But Jack always wants to bring other engines to play with it, so we have to bring a separate tin of engines.
d) Cranky can be extended in height, and lowered again, but is very unstable when extended, and easily gets pushed down again. This design feels quite flimsy.
e) The wind-up action of the bit of string that forms the crane chain (whatever the word is)is quite flimsy and looks like it could break, though it has not yet. The magnet on it, however, does manage to lift the weight of the average Take-n-Play engine - Edward, Toby, etc.
f) But Jack soon gave up mostly trying to use the wind-up handle, as it needs two hands to do it and hold it steady, and though he has just turned 3, he found this quite frustrating. He mostly plays with the track around Cranky (would benefit from being a bit bigger, but not bad - gets a lot of engines on it in a lineb around it, and likes the bridge/tunnel, and the signal) and if he does lift an engine with the crane, he uses his hand to lift the string up.
Overall, it was a good idea to include the track (wish we'd had the barrels etc, though!), but very disappointing that the water of the docks is not built in (I'm sure Jack would love to play "aaarh, Salty has fallen in the docks!" properly), and that it is not more sealed when folded to be carried around. Effectively, there are wide gaps when folded.
Also the catch to hold it closed when folded(the track folds around Cranky) is a little awkward for an adult, and Jack cannot close or open it.
Very disappointed, but Jack does play with it at least. With better design, he would have got a lot more benefit and fun from it, though.