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100 of 100 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is just fantastic!, 3 Mar 2010
By 
Angela - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lego: Crazy Action Contraptions (Klutz) (Hardcover-spiral)
This book has all you need and full instructions to make 16 exciting Lego models with the 100 pieces provided.

We acquired this book at Christmas, it has taken me a while to write about it as you can only build one model at a time, and each time we have built one, my children have been pretty reluctant to dismantle our creation. This is Lego, but with a twist. As the models come with gears and rubber bands, you can actually make things that work, and do something more interesting than the norm.

The first thing we built was the car that features on the front of the book. The book promised that it would travel over 50 feet "on a good run", and once built we were delighted to find out that once we wound up our creation it did indeed work as billed and lived up to its "Supercharged Speedster" name, and travelled at quite an impressive speed. There was something very satisfying about using all the gears and bands to make a working toy.

We have found that the instructions are quite easy to follow - we have tended to build these models together, but I am guessing that an 8 or 9 year old would manage to build the models by themselves. The drawings are not quite of the same quality as actual Lego instructions, in some cases it is a little tricky to work out which particular axle or connector you need, however a handy contents page at the start of the book means you can check that you are using a piece of the right length. There is also a trouble shooting page at the end of the book with handy tips for each model, you might, for example, have to adjust a band on a gear slightly or make sure all the bricks are pushed firmly together.

So far everything we have made has worked brilliantly well - the kids particularly enjoyed playing with the "Squeezeclaw Grabber" which is a very extendable small object picker- upper, but all the toys really are designed to appeal. The Annoy-O-Matic, a kind of old fashioned football rattle fully lived up to its name, though the "Beaker Blender" - a machine to stir drinks, did result in some rather sticky lego! Still as this is lego, all the pieces are sturdy and washable and you get the feeling when building these models that this is what lego was designed to do; this book is just great, it is lego but not as we know it, perhaps Lego as it ought to be!

The books itself is ring bound, with thick, wipeable pages and is very robust indeed, and the lego is all easily stored in the box on its front cover. The text and pictures are bright and engaging - you do really feel that it has been designed with children in mind.

I think that the construction of these models is challenging, but in a good way - some of these builds are not always straightforward, but the steps are well broken down and, ultimately, the end results are so impressive that it is worth it. I'm pretty sure that this book is aimed at boys as things like the "Battle Top Spinner" - which launches spinning lego do seem boy territory, but girls do feature in the photos of kids that accompany this book and any child or adult who has an interest in how things work would enjoy making these models in my opinion. My daughter has really enjoyed playing with this with me.

I do have one slight criticism, and that is that being an American book instructions such as getting a "bunch of gears" and "we ain't kiddin" can grate a little, it would have been nice if this were adapted for the UK market, but this minor point doesn't detract from the enjoyment to be had from this book.

I think that this would make a fantastic and original present, and that it is actually really good value for all the fun that is to be had with it. As I have indicated all the models are fun and they all seem to work well. I thoroughly recommend this book, it certainly lives up to its title and is a must-have for any lego fan, young or old!

(may appear elsewhere in my name)
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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent boys gift that keeps him occupied for ages - well worth it, 30 Oct 2009
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In the tricky area of buying durable and fun toys for a 7 year old boy - this has come up trumps. I think that it would probably be a little too fiddly for any age younger than this (apart from the younger lego genius) but would certainly entertain any lego fan of all ages above 7. My son got this for his birthday and although did not tackle it with much enthusiasm when he first got it has now got the confidence to tackle all the wonderful extras in this book. Keeps him occupied for ages and as always klutz is brilliant - I just wish there was a follow on from this for the next pressie and also something for the girls.

However, back to this book - it comes with a number of pages of projects and some very interesting mechanical lego bits - I have had to allocate one of my kitchen tupperwares to house all the bits otherwise they end up all over the place and if lost in the big lego box will never be found again! My advice - make sure you open the book with him and give him the box straight away otherwise you will find the hoover making short work of some of the smaller pieces and then rendering the projects in the book useless.

Under strict instructions to keep this lot of lego separately, our 7 year old mechanic has found many hours of enjoyment from this and I can highly highly recommend it. Well worth the money and wont disappoint.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars great kit, 29 Oct 2009
By 
light (brighton) - See all my reviews
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Two years ago I bought the predecessor of this on amazon and my son loved making all the contraptions.
I searched high and low on the internet for a similar kit or even a book with good ideas for building small projects of things that worked but only found images for ideas, so I was very pleased to discover Klutz had brought out another pack. This one is even better as you get all the parts you need (the previous one had parts for half the projects and you had to supplement the rest from your lego brick collection)although the paper this one is printed on is flimsy and would be better printed on semi cardboard for longevity.

I thought my son would be super excited to get this as part of his birthday gifts but he left it unopened for quite a while. However, when he did get round to looking at it - he was off. All the contraptions work well and are well explained (although the colour of some of our technic parts were different to the illustrations) he particularly liked the extendable pick up tongs and remade those at the end to keep. I'm sure we will revisit this again on a rainy day.
This may not look it but it is a great value pack comapred to Lego boxed products which usually only make one model or a couple of models that are fairly static - the little cars and gear operated jigs you make in this pack explore all sorts of engineering concepts .

These packs make fantastic presents for children that like building Lego and I think children in the 6-9 age range (and their parents) will enjoy making the contraptions.
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29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The more, the better, 19 Nov 2010
This review is from: Lego: Crazy Action Contraptions (Klutz) (Hardcover-spiral)
I bought this set of blocks and designs of various contraptions for my 5-year-old boy. I wasn't sure if he will be able to assemble most of those crazy constructions, but:

1) with minimum help and support kids will manage easily
2) some are easy, some are more demanding, so you'll always find something for yourself / your kid
3) the racer and the gondolas are my sons favourite
- the first is difficult but rewarding
- the second is extremely easy and allows limitless adjustments
4) we tried the blender and it blends!
5) when my son went to bed I set for two hours designing more advanced blender and finishing with a model of a gear box to explain the workings of this mechanism to my wife
6) when your kids are away, and you have friends at home, build the time killing machine - at the beginning everyone will think you're nuts, but after you start killing the time, there will be an endless roar of laughing people ;-)

Anyway, this is Lego, so kids will love it and always be able to build something.
You've got 16 different contraptions, so tons of ideas.
The book is extremely well prepared for children and rough handling - thick paper, plastic, spiral binding.
These are technics blocks, so the more you have (or will have) the more you'll be able to do.
The rules are simple, so once you learn them (and search the Net for more instructions if you will) you can build anything! For example a Lego launcher for paper planes ;-)

The only downside I found is the box itself which can be accidently opened by a child. Means a lot of searching for blocks under the table.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic contraptions pack, 27 Aug 2010
By 
J. Ogden "Jo" (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Lego: Crazy Action Contraptions (Klutz) (Hardcover-spiral)
My son loved this. He is lego mad and although he is only 5 he has been building lego model since he was a baby. This pack was excellent value for money and ideal if you want to keep kids busy. We took it on holiday so he would have something to do in the evenings. Most of the models work very well but some are better than others.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great stuff for alllego fans, 22 Nov 2009
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My 5 year old son loves this, he is lego mad so perhaps not surprising but he just keeps going back to this making new things. He needs some help to complete the full instructions of many of the ideas given in the book, it is probably aimed at 7 and older, but he just loves trying and making his own 'contraption' with moving wheels, rubber bands and other pieces. Some lego boxes only get 1-2 plays after which not all pieces may be together to make that car, plane etc. again. The life of this is so much longer, it really stimulates imagination and must be good for a bit of understanding of science.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Crazy ? - I now see why., 2 Dec 2010
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This review is from: Lego: Crazy Action Contraptions (Klutz) (Hardcover-spiral)
This is the second set I have bought. The first had essential odd size rubber bands missing, and this one had some other components missing, but some extra bits too. We returned the first for a replacement, but have decided to keep the second as it did contain the specific bits my son was after.

When you have a complete set, it is a great product with some fun models to build and useful bits and pieces to combine with others from your Lego collection. Definitely worth the reduced price I paid.

Please note the Lego company does not have information on this product, and were not able to replace the missing rubber bands. They may be more helpful with more standard parts (they usually are), so if like me you find some missing, then returning the set for a replacement is your best option.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great book, 24 Oct 2010
This review is from: Lego: Crazy Action Contraptions (Klutz) (Hardcover-spiral)
great book my son loved making the models and found it easy enough- he is 9
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars crazy action contraptions, 10 Feb 2009
By 
Mr. Reginald Lambert "RSL" (Midlands UK) - See all my reviews
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This is a fantastic use of LEGO really stimulates the creative mood.
The contents are well thought out and the examples are excellent.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars lego klutz book, 2 Feb 2009
By 
N. J. Bailey (uk) - See all my reviews
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brilliant - as are most klutz stuff - good for tricky to buy for young boys...
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Lego: Crazy Action Contraptions (Klutz)
Lego: Crazy Action Contraptions (Klutz) by Doug Stillinger (Hardcover-spiral - 1 Feb 2010)
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