FBTBForums.net Forum Index FBTBForums.net

...has been nuked!

 
 ChatChat    FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

7738 Coast Guard Helicopter and Life Raft Review

 
This forum is locked: you cannot post, reply to, or edit topics.   This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies.    FBTBForums.net Forum Index -> Set Reviews
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
ZombieDraykov
Undead!


Joined: 07 Feb 2005
Location: Lone Star State

PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2008 3:06 pm    Post subject: 7738 Coast Guard Helicopter and Life Raft Review Reply with quote


[Apologies for not including my own pictures, but apparently, I'm hopelessly lazy.]

I picked this one up at TRU this weekend. The thing that most attracted me to this set when I saw preview images a while back holds true with the real deal: the main model is a fairly accurate representation of a large scale rescue helicopter akin to the Sea King or Cormorant. Overall, it's a nifty set with a decent parts selection. The giant airplane tail, while a turn off to some, does actually give the rescue chopper a realistic look (keeping in mind we're talking realistic in terms of LEGO portrayal).

We see the return of the old skool shark, orange minifig swim-fins and a "new" yellow life preserver (I was surprised to learn it hasn't turned up in yellow until now). There are other parts of note, of course. This set includes a new modified 2 x 16 plate with angled side extensions (x6) which serves as a great rotor blade for larger helicopters. There are 4 of the 65 2 x 1 x 2 slopes in black that first appeared in the Green Grocer that contribute to the brick built nose section (using SNOT techniques). There are also 4 white curved 4 x 1 slopes in the life raft that have also been seen in the recent Speed Racer sets. And, who could forget the orange hexagonal flags for all you Jedi Starfighter fans out there. Smile There is also a fairly new part that resembles the old "Light and Sound" globes and has been used in some recent Bionicle sets in various colors. It's a bit of a disappointment, however, in that it uses a pin attachment instead of simply residing on the stud like the old ones. Still neat, but I prefer the "Light and Sound" variety.

As previously mentioned, the overall appearance of the chopper, at least externally, is pretty accurate for the type. I've longed to see a chopper of this scale in LEGO form for a while and it's one of the better LEGO helicopter sets in recent memory. The cockpit is a bit spartan as far as instrument panel and controls (a single 1x4 tile with sticker applied), but does offer a nice 5-stud-wide configuration through the use of jumper plates, allowing you to seat pilot and co-pilot side by side. The use of the new motorized, push-button pulley brick as a winch will be a hit with the kiddies, but the pulley isn't strong enough to actually lift the life raft more than an inch or so and the string included is a bit thicker and shorter than one might expect for this kind of set-up. The interior cargo area of the chopper is accessible on port and starboard sides via click hinge doors that raise up toward (but not necessarily into) the rotors. A sliding door would've been more accurate, but these suffice. The interior itself is a little bit of a disappointment, as the cargo hold only amounts to a 4x6 stud area (unless you feel like throwing cargo or passengers in the hollowed out tail section). It's sort of "sunken" at a about a 1 brick depth and incorporates a few bricks that serve as mounting brackets for a minifig stretcher if you choose to house it in the hold. The winch arm swings out of the cargo hold on the port side of the aircraft, but when in the stowed position, takes up a lot of the interior cargo space. The upside is that with a little modification, one could delete or shorten the winch arm and, by raising the deck, increase the floor area of the cargo bay to something more like 6x8 studs. The rotor assembly and engines are decent (minor details like the engine exhausts are nice, but nothing too fancy). The rotor shaft, which is built with a variety of Technic parts, seems just a hair too long which makes for some minor stability problems when playing "thwup-thwup" with your new toy. Nothing too major though.


The life raft is a novel build. A deceptively simple design that makes use of the newer style hinges and 1x1 plates with clip along with some 1x4 modified bricks with studs on side (those mount to a 10 x 10 octagonal plate with open center). Nothing much to say, really. What you see is what you get. It's sturdy and simple and fun (with roomy interior that could hold 3 or 4 minifigs easily).


The minifigs, not to be too generic about it, are awesome. The chopper crew consists of pilot, co-pilot and para-rescue diver guy. Standard Town fare, really, but the blue, yellow and orange colors of the helicopter crew are popping with high-visibility vibrance and the rescue logo seen on their torsos is a good one, reminiscent of the same one seen in some older World City sets. The 4th minifig is appropriately nautical in theme, if a little redundant (same one seen in 7994 LEGO City Harbor and the 2006 and 2007 City Advent calendars).

Stickers? Yes, there is a fairly good size sheet...about what you'd expect from a set this size. While the sticker designs are great, I hate using stickers on LEGO. The good news is, the color scheme of white, blue and orange with a touch of black here and there (which I really like for a Coast Guard/rescue theme) is maintained adequately with their exclusion. If you don't like 'em, don't use 'em and you should still be happy with the end result.

Ratings (on a scale of 1 to 10):

Parts: 8/10
Minifigs: 8/10
Detail: 7/10
Playability: 7/10
Price to parts: 9/10
Availability: 9/10
OVERALL RATING: 8/10
_________________
Hail Brains!


Last edited by ZombieDraykov on Thu Jan 01, 2009 2:12 pm; edited 13 times in total
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
General Veers



Joined: 30 Jan 2006
Location: Getting on board the next flight to FBTB II

PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2008 3:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really should get this set. I have the old rescue heli, but this one is so much nicer.
_________________
Raptor Fun Fact #73- The raptor's natural enemy is the gas-powered internal combustion off-road vehicle, which is made of evil.

So long everyone, my flight's leaving soon.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
CommanderJake



Joined: 11 Oct 2005
Location: England

PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2008 3:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sweet review, thanks! I find the engines to be a bit too bulky, but I haven't seen it in real life. Have you got a better pic of the new rotors?
_________________
http://www.ogame.org
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website Yahoo Messenger MSN Messenger
ZombieDraykov
Undead!


Joined: 07 Feb 2005
Location: Lone Star State

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2008 5:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't, but this guy does...
_________________
Hail Brains!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
oonich7



Joined: 13 Jun 2006
Location: illinois

PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 1:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm gonna get it after someone mods it into marine one.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
RF Aurora



Joined: 20 Apr 2007
Location: Seneca, IL

PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2008 11:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got my 7738 Coast Guard Helicopter today. Very impressed with it as a whole, with one minor pro. The Main rotor wobbles due to the way the it is attached. I was kind of skeptical at first, but I think I will find the parts in other colors and make a modern take on the old ResQ chopper with this and some minor modifications.
_________________
Infinite Bricks in Infinite Combinations(IBrIC)
"Remind me again...How'd I get suckered into this?"
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
This forum is locked: you cannot post, reply to, or edit topics.   This topic is locked: you cannot edit posts or make replies.    FBTBForums.net Forum Index -> Set Reviews All times are GMT - 5 Hours
Page 1 of 1
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group