Lego Technics is not the Lego you fell in love with as a child. It looks different. It feels different. It smells different. But even though it has so many different traits to the original Lego building blocks, it still brings that joyous feeling of creating something wonderful with your own two hands.Despite 53% of you thinking I should build the Dune Buggy from the 2-in-1 kit Lego sent me to play around with, my heart was always set on the quad bike, so that's what I decided to build. From the first stages of unpacking the pieces and sorting them on the family table, I was immediately transported back to my youth, where I'd spend hours building and rebuilding various Lego vehicles and buildings. It's actually amazing how much of a trigger Lego is to sparking long-forgotten memories - as I've mentioned previously, it's been at least 15 years since I last played with Lego. And only now am I realising what I was missing out on.
The Technics quad bike is a complicated beast, although I imagine it's actually quite basic for the Technics range. There's almost no way you could put it together without the instructions. As you create each part, page by page, you end up with a collection of fragments that are almost impossible to tell where they'll end up in the finished creation. Instead of raised bumps on each piece, the Technics range instead opts for pieces with holes through them, with connecting rods that slide through the holes to join other parts together.
This means you can create vehicles that not only have moving parts, but also include semi-complex mechanics like cogs which allow parts of your creation to control other parts. Even though there's no power source in the Quad bike, the design is such that you could conceivably add one to turn your Lego creation into a remote controlled vehicle relatively easily. The rear left wheel, for example, is connected through a collection of cogs to an "engine" which could be easily motorised. The handlebars also move, controlling the direction of the front wheels.
The entire process of building the quad bike took me about an hour and a half. But what an hour and a half it was! During that time, I was captivated, enthralled and mesmerised by the intricacies of the Lego creation. At the end I had to resist the urge to pull the entire thing apart and do it again straight away. It was like being a kid again, with my bucket of Lego and all the time in the world.
I'm certain I'm not the only geek in the world who had forgotten the joy of building with Lego. But my passion has been renewed. While I won't be heading out and buying the Star Wars Millennium Falcon any time soon, I can guarantee you that it won't be another 15 years before I pick up my next Lego kit, Technics or no.