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Modular Buildings, to pass on or collect?

yys4uyys4u USA SoCalMember Posts: 1,092
edited September 2011 in Collecting
With the new Pet shop release, it leads me to believe either the Grand Emporium or the Fire Brigade will be discontinued soon. I was in my Dark Ages when the Cafe Corner and Green Grocer were released, but would see the other two on display and while I recognized them as beautiful models, I had no need for them (Being a castle/pirate and random good set collector). It wasn't till I realized these all could be combined to make an amazing street that I saw the value in these sets.

After this realization I debated getting the Grand Emporium and Fire Brigade, and decided not to because it will be very difficult to muster 6+ bills to get each of the original two sets(I will most definitely at some point need all the Modular sets). Well now that the pet shop is released I'm afraid on of the others will be discontinued the prices will sky rocket as their predecessors have, making it even more difficult to collect the modular buildings at a later date.

So my question is, should I pass on this theme as a whole, or jump in right now and start relocating my assets to get the three sets that are still out. How many people out here are collecting them and how many pass them up based on price or lack of interest? Again I don't have many city sets, (currently the only city sets I have that are complete and constructed are the City Small Car (3177), and Camper (7639)). But then again, it would be an excellent display for many Collectible Minifigures, which I collect avidly.
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Comments

  • MartinMartin Member Posts: 375
    My view is that the modular buildings are must-haves for AFOLs. They are expensive, but they are beautiful. If you think you might want to collect them, buy the current ones now before they are discontinued. As you say, they skyrocket in price once they are no longer available from LEGO direct.
  • legomattlegomatt Member Posts: 2,548
    edited May 2011
    I was in a similar boat, ignored the early modular sets (partly due to price at the time despite thinking they looked great), and with the pet shop release have now decided to pass altogether - I would if i could, but i just don't have the income to branch into this series, (in addition to Collectable Minifigs, OT Star Wars, probably POTC, and other 'nice stuff' such as some of the unusual Alien Conquest bits), AND chase the ones i missed. BUT my advice would be this: if you love the sets and you're going to jump in, do so without delay, as you'll only end up wanting the whole lot eventually. The longer you leave it, the easier it is to pass (as i have done much to the relief of my wallet) - but it will be that much harder to catch up if you change your mind.
  • legomattlegomatt Member Posts: 2,548
    I hope what i just wrote makes sense, I was too slow editing and it got stuck.
  • yys4uyys4u USA SoCalMember Posts: 1,092
    Yea I understand your point. I REALLY like the sets, and I agree with Martin that they are a must-have for AFOLs but I totally forgot there's actually 3 sets that are out of production, making things a lot harder. Especially when I consider how long it will take me to save up to get those 3 sets, and by then who knows how much higher the prices will go...but then again...can I afford to wait? Will I eventually be sucked into buying just one then will need the rest? What if another set goes out of production leaving 4 second hand priced sets! Ah the dilemma!!
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 2,322
    edited May 2011
    IMO... the entire line is overpriced... and not because of the price-to-parts ratio... but because when TLG switched to the minifig scale back in the late 1970s, they didn't have this type of set in mind. I grew up with the Town Plan scale (1 door = 3 bricks tall), and the minifig scale (1 door= 5 or 6 bricks tall) caused a fourfold price increase in LEGO sets with 4 walls.

    Attached are 2 pics of a Town Plan scale set that someone commissioned from me, using the Town Plan accessories as well as building scale. IMO, these were fun to build... didn't take too long... and weren't as expensive as new large sets are today. But that's my biased opinion.

    However, I do have one other complaint about all the new sets.... too much gimmickry. All the old sets were just build up... now we have the SNOT techniquie in a dozen different variations, and a lot of building gimmicks that makes building without instructions totally impossible. You have to be spoon fed every step of the way in building these elaborate and large structures. And unfortunately... the end results have an unfortunately resemblance to the buildings you would see on the Disneyworld Main Street, rather than the small town Main Street...

    Just my (biased) opinion....

  • colethegeekcolethegeek Member Posts: 12
    I was in my Dark Ages when the Cafe Corner and Green Grocer were in production. I am bummed that I missed them, but unless I happen to win the lottery, I know that I'll probably never get my hands on them. I did, however, get both the Fire Brigade and Grand Emporium, and just having the two still creates quite an amazing display. Building them both, though, I did notice a large amounts of improvement between the Fire Brigade and the Grand Emporium-- it was obvious during building which one came first. From what I've heard of their predecessors, there isn't much focus on the interior, which I find to be part of the charm of these pieces. It certainly is one of my favorite lines and based off of their popularity, I can only imagine that they won't stop with the Pet Shop.

    If you're going to start now, though, you should get the Fire Brigade, since that was the first to be released, and (I assume) is likely to be discontinued soon.
  • YpresYpres Member Posts: 200
    I also missed the Cafe Corner... though looking back it's because I didn't have the money. I'd say these are more for the AFOL who commit to City designs. So the only advantage to building minifig scale streets is if you want to make a huge Lego town. Lets face it... the direction it's heading is far more expensive then we imagine. I like many different themes and would rather get a lot of different stuff than build a town. I feel bad about missing out on a cool series of sets, but every year I see plenty of other cool sets to keep my wallet empty. Unless you really like modern city don't bother... the Ebay re-seller world makes collecting Lego horrible.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,290
    @yys4u: I understand the desire to be complete, but if cost is really an issue, I would suggest doing as colethegeek says: buy the current ones at the more reasonable retail price, since they'll be enough for an impressive street scene. After that, if you still desire the out of print sets, you can begin on those, and hopefully your financial situation is improved. Also, I would focus on getting Cafe Corner and Green Grocer and pass on Market Street.

    Market Street has some interesting build techniques and I like the color scheme, but on the whole, it isn't up to snuff with the rest of the line. The roof looks unfinished, and the bizarre looking single story side market just doesn't fit in with the row of modulars at all. The final nail in the coffin is that it had an even shorter production run than it's counterparts, so it's aftermarket price is further out of proportion.
  • drdavewatforddrdavewatford Hertfordshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,741
    edited May 2011
    Gary (@istokg) you're spot on about the gimmickry, but that's part of the point with these sets. If you listen to designer Jamie Berard talking about the Modulars, it's clear that one of the objectives is to employ novel building techniques and use pieces in unusual ways as much to teach AFOLs new ways of building as it is to "surprise and delight" us (as he himself says in one of his videos). It's also a way of sneaking unusual colours back onto the palate in greater quantities - remember all that Sand Green in Green Grocer, Medium Blue in Market Street, and then there's Sand Blue in Pet Shop. This is I believe very much a deliberate move to "delight" AFOLs. Finally, I would also challenge your assertion that they're overpriced; in so much as ALL LEGO is expensive you're correct, but compared with many other sets the parts to price ratio is a bit of a steal.

    Here's Jamie talking about Pet Shop, in 2 parts :




    Overall, Modulars have become my favourite 'theme'. Coming from an inveterate LEGO Star Wars fan and collector, that's some admission !!
  • atkinsaratkinsar Member Posts: 4,272
    I've resisted the modulars, until a week ago when I caved in and ordered the Fire Brigade. I've no doubt that I'll also buy the Emporium and the Pet Shop now too. As for whether I go back and collect the rest, I'm not sure yet, I think I'll just keep an eye out and if a bargain comes up I'll probably get it.

    I think they are fantastic sets, and the longer it went on without me buying them, the more I think I'll end up regretting it later down the line.
  • wander099wander099 Member Posts: 114
    I like the modulars, I think a lot of them look really great, but it comes down to the fact that I like other sets more. If I had an unlimited budget, I'd buy the modulars, but as long as I have to watch my spending I have to buy the sets I really, really want. And that means Star Wars, POTC, and other themes. However, I do guarantee you that if there is a modular police station, that will go on my list if it is well done, but I've got to pick and choose and these sets just didn't make the cut since I am not building a town.
  • LegoboyLegoboy 100km furtherMember Posts: 8,837
    This forum is not good for my health. Whereas I had merely toyed with the idea, but not seriously.....I am now! I've spent vast fortune securing the deleted SW UCS, I don't want to go there again!! But will I regret it?? Arrghhhh.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,290
    edited May 2011
    This might push you over the edge: the wikipedia entry for the series provides some background and a good synopsis: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lego_Modular_Houses
  • mackrelmackrel Member Posts: 75
    I have all the sets except Market Street. I also have an extra Green Grocer MISB. I am so fortunate that I bought the Cafe Corner when I did. It had already been discontinued when I purchased it at the LEGO store. A fluke. My advice to all of you that don't have the Cafe Corner or an unlimited income.... Move on with your Lego life. The Green Grocer is still somewhat attainable. Every time you look over at the Fire Brigade, Grand Emporium, and now the Pet Shop you will be reminded of what could have been.
  • LegoboyLegoboy 100km furtherMember Posts: 8,837
    edited May 2011
    ^ + ^^ Noooooooooooooo!
  • pantenkindpantenkind Member Posts: 258
    Nice, a crawlspace for those of you making your "John Wayne Gacy setup". Ok, a bit tasteless, I know. But seriously I love these buildings! I collect sets that will display well as I do not interact with them other than to admire details. I just finished the fire brigade and soon will be starting my grand emporium thats sitting in my closet. I missed the first three but I think I will definitely go after the green grocer for sure. I really wish I would have come out of my dark ages maybe a year or two earlier as I missed alot of the Star wars ucs sets, the first of these and the taj majal and carousel. Oh well, heres to the future sets that I will not miss again.
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 2,322
    @drdavewatford .... yes you're right about most of your points. The gimmickry that TLG has always used in the Miniland at all the LEGOLANDs is very apparent in these sets. And I do like the color pallettes (possibly makes more available at PAB walls). Maybe if these sets were available as "facades only" as an additional option to complete sets, it would provide those of lesser means an opportunity to buy these pricey sets at a more affordable cost (and use the parts from their own collections to complete them as they see fit).

    Jamie Berard and I have traded Emails in the past (I didn't know it was him talking on the videos, since I didn't see his name on Youtube, plus I never met him in person...) but he did buy my first LEGO CD (1949-80) 2 years ago.... and he's a brilliant builder...
  • drdavewatforddrdavewatford Hertfordshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,741
    edited May 2011
    ^ Fully agree about Jamie Berard's skills, @Istokg - he's about as close to a celebrity as it gets in the LEGO world ! I think he's been responsible for all the modulars (with the obvious exception of Market Street which was actually a fan-designed Factory set I think), and he also designed the wonderful Tower Bridge set.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,290
    @Istokg: I don't understand your argument that the Modulars (in minifig scale) are overpriced when compared to 70s and earlier era Town Plan scale sets. Yes, they are priced more, but that doesn't mean they are overpriced (priced higher than their value). The larger scale translates to more pieces, which allows for greater detail. The difference in price is a result of a tangible, concrete increase in bricks.

    You specifically excluded price to piece ratio from your assessment of them being overpriced, but to me, that's far and away the most pertinent measure. Factors not intrinsic to the bricks, such as third party licensing and packaging (Architecture series) would constitute examples where sets become overpriced relative to sets without those features. Intrinsically, I could understand the argument that the increased specialization of parts translates to a higher overall price to piece ratio, as well. But I just don't follow the logic that a change in scale which necessitates more parts is equivalent to overpricing.
  • MartinMartin Member Posts: 375
    edited May 2011
    ^^ Yes, Market Street was designed by Dutch AFOL Eric Brok using LDD who sadly lost his battle with cancer almost immediately after his set was released.
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 2,322
    @rocao... I shouldn't have said "overpriced".... I should have used the term "more expensive".... generally (if the buildings were of solid LEGO) the 2x factor would have lead to a price 8 times (2 to the 3rd power) as much. But since these are hollow structures, a price difference of 4 times would be more appropriate.

    The point I was trying to make was the back in the Town Plan era you got more buildings for your money. Today each building is very pricey.... back then you practically got an entire town for the cost of a single building today. Just bad choice of words.

    But as you can see with my Super Town Plan example... you can still get a lot of details with a smaller scale. But once you get to the micro scale, the amount of details diminishes quite a bit further, and there's little room for fancy building.

    I've always been a fan of the Town Plan system... not just because I grew up with it, but also I like the very high quality (and very expensive and collectible today) 1:87 vehicles and other accessories that gave it a more realistic look than much of the LEGO of today. I dislike the conical and spherical trees of today... but find the larger use of "greenery canopy" MOC trees very nicely done. And I dislike many of the modern LEGO cars made for the minifigs as looking too "cartoonish"... although I do like the newer LEGO trains very much.

    I also have one pet peeve that is common today... that notch of missing plastic in the macaroni bricks.... I hate it... and that notch is found in so many specialized parts of today. It seems that nearly every new part made today "has to be able to attach to a baseplate".... like the macaroni bricks.... and therefore has that notch of missing plastic.

    I guess I'm just from the "old school" era.... ;-)
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,290
    ^ Ok, I got it; perhaps I read too much into the word :P

    I agree that there is a pleasantry with simpler models, and affordability is just one factor contributing to it, but I also assert that the greater detail afforded by the larger scale has allowed much more variety, and with it the longevity and continued success of LEGO models.

    Also, since you did mention micro scale, if you haven't seen this previously, I present to you Matthew Raehl masterpiece of micro scale:
    image

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/matthew_raehl/5562132990/in/photostream/
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    The modulars are no doubt great fun - ive got some I havent built yet. Really didnt want to miss them, totally agree with the 'get them now' sentiment in thie thread.

    The thing I dont like about the modulars (and the reason I havent built them yet) is that everyones city ends up looking the same, like some compulsory street.

    Also, why such a gap between the 'modular' street and the rest of the city? I'd love to see a station in this style, or a town house - basically something which isnt terraced.

    But aside from that, you dont want to miss out on them, they're things of beauty.
  • prof1515prof1515 EarthMember Posts: 1,561
    There is a town house with the Pet Shop. If by "town house" you meant a stand-alone residential building, that wouldn't fit with the street as you will rarely see such structures in a city, as opposed to suburban or rural, street.

    Personally, I love the entire line (Market Street excluded since it's neither part of the official line nor up to snuff with the other sets) and have at least one of each. I'm really debating how many of the Pet Shop to get. That town house included with it really opens up the possibility of an entire residential street of a dozen of those models and the pet shop itself can be modified for many other purposes. I would still like to see a police station, city hall, hotel (an actual hotel, not just the sign for one), bank, corner post office, library and numerous other shops like a barber, corner drug store, butcher, baker (no candlestick maker) and corner pub.
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 2,322
    edited May 2011
    @rocao - Maybe we're using different terminology for the same scale... what I call Town Plan or Classic Scale (door = 3 bricks tall) is in this instance (a very beautifully executed group of buildings) as microscale.

    I see they have the 1x2x2 (flat) windows... a variation of the old 1x2x2 classic window... and the 1x2x3 (flat) windows, which are the same scale as the old 1x2x3 (right or left) classic door. Because I have several thousand classic LEGO windows, and over 500 doors, some of the door handles have broken off, and it can be used just like the 1x6x3 Panorama window... the first image below shows a classic door, a panorama window and a classic door with broken off handle in the tobacco shop. This yellow building with blue mansard roof is reminiscent of what you would find in Paris.

    The 2nd image (inspired by Louis Sullivan's Carson Pirie Scott building in Chicago) is one I built because I was intrigued with the curved and straight railing type fence pieces, and how closely they resemble windows, when used correctly. I also used some of those 4x4 corner bricks (in white)... although now we have the wide macaroni bricks to show the same curve. And yes.... I used the unused background parts of LEGO stickers... cut them into little rectangles... and stuck them onto the building to hide all those "missing notches" that macaroni and other curved bricks have. I like the sculptural effect that this curved building has, and the hiding of the notches improves the appearance.

    The 3rd image takes those same railing fence pieces, and along with some of those (now rare and pricey) Belville "gingerbread" arches... made a Victorian Gazebo with them. This time I didn't use any of the sticker parts to hide the "notches". I sent this image to Jamie Berard 2 years ago (after he ordered my LEGO Sets/Parts Collectors Guide on CD)... and he really liked it... but said that his team of designers were NOT allowed to mix in Belville parts with their designs. I do believe that this restriction has since been lifted... but wouldn't this make a nice addition in a park adjacent to the Victorian row of designer models?? All it needs is some minifigs, trees... and maybe a minifig brass band! :-)

    For the sellers on Bricklink... this Gazebo would be a parting out dream... 32 blue 2x2 convex corner slopes (45 degree)... 16 blue 2x2 concave corner slopes (45 degree), 8 white curve railing fence pieces, and 4 white Belville arches... all pricey parts in Bricklink at the moment...

    P.S. Besides being a LEGO Historian... I am also an architecture nut... with over 150 books in my library.
  • colethegeekcolethegeek Member Posts: 12
    @drdavewatford, the reason for the great color choice and appeal to AFOLs stems from Jamie Beard (according to "LEGO: A Love Story"), an AFOL turned set designer, argued with LEGO on our behalf to get us sets in the rare colors. You can also thank him for the small windows, which were created for the sets at his strong suggestion.
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 2,322
    Colethegeek.... when Brickworld (Chicago) had their first LEGO convention (2008?) a few years ago (I couldn't attend because my mother was very ill)... I had one of the attendees ask the question (to Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen and the new LEGO President) about the very poor "System" in LEGO windows at the time... and the reply from them was that the LEGO design team had the same issue with the lack of usable windows.... and that they would be working on a system. So far the 1x2x2 and 1x2x3 flat front windows are the result... along with the back side of those "less than flattering" headlight bricks, which have already been out for many years.

    Now if they could only make those headlight bricks with the back AND front as square openings...
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    After reading about how people missed out on the first modular buildings, I am so happy I have all the sets in the line, including Market Street. For those people who have not purchased modular building yet, I strongly recommend buying Fire Brigade and Grand Emporium as soon as possible. Right now half of the modular building are available at RRP and as mentioned before are a good value considering the low price per piece ratio. When the sets retire, aftermarket prices are likely going to soar. The two sets are poised to retire. There is a reason these sets are in such high demand: they are very well designed.

    I wouldn't worry too much about the retired sets. Aftermarket prices increase with time, but not as much as when a popular set retires. Just get in on the lineup before it progresses even more than it has now.
  • vwong19vwong19 San DiegoMember Posts: 1,188
    I would suggest that if anyone here likes the modular buildings that they buy them before they become discontinued and reach ridiculous prices as we see with the first 3 sets. I would go on to even recommend that you not only buy 1, but buy 3. One for yourself, and sell the 2 sets for the other people like yourself who decided that they didn't want to go into this theme, but then caved in.

    I have all 5 sets in my collection. I passed on the Market Street originally because I didn't think that it belonged with the other 2 building.... I was wrong. So instead, I like so many others went back and purchased the set... piece by piece on Bricklink. Unfortunately you can't do that now since certain rare pieces are going for $10/brick.

    If your argument may be that you do not have the funds, then I would purchase the remaining sets for resale because I guarantee that you will get your money back and then some. You can always change your mind from selling it new, to building it and then selling it used at more than what you paid for.

    If you believe that by purchasing the non-retired sets would cause you to buy the retired sets, then you must have some disposable income, considering the retired sets are ranging between $400-$1000+.

    These sets are NOT overpriced. Most of these sets are constructed of rare bricks and colors. They provide a very fun building experience that is rivaled by few sets. These sets are not hollow, but are complete with interiors and with the latter sets being completely furnished.

    My biggest regret like most people here is not buying more than one of these sets. If you bought the Cafe Corner, you would know that LEGO literally encourages you to buy 2,3 or 6 of them, to build yourself a skyscraper.... Don't believe me, check out the instructions for the set. Had you been insane enough to do that, you would now be considered one smart LEGO collector. I recommended to so many of my LEGO friends to buy these sets, but many of them thought they to be too expensive. I wished I had listened to myself and bought more of them.

    By all means, if you do not like the set, don't buy them. But if you do, then do not hesitate.

    Also, I'm still holding out hope that years from now, LEGO will re-release the retired sets (they've done that will other themes). Even though that may mean, the sets that I own will be devalued, I wouldn't want to deprive others of this wonderful building experience.

  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 2,322
    I'm not 100% sure that these discontinued sets are not overpriced. Now granted, they do have huge parts counts, and that is definitely going in their favor. But as far as rare parts and colors go... we're never quite sure what the PAB wall at the LEGO stores is going to surprise us with.

    I remember buying a 386 Ambulance Helicopter set back in the 1970s... only because it had 2 45 degree white concave corner slopes. Then over 30 years later these same parts were reintroduced in the Shrieking Shack Harry Potter Set.

    These modular sets also have eye appeal, which helps in their increasing value... but I'm always careful of new items as investments.... one has only to look at the very collectible Princess Diana Beanie Babies.... and their once high demand.

    But I will agree that LEGO is in a different league as other collectibles... but I see all the hype of the new series of Minifigs... being cranked out by TLG by the zillions... and wonder... hmmmm will that bubble burst at some point?
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    ^ I agree, they do risk straining the bubble a bit with the minifigs generating a certain collecting culture, but look at it this way, if they sell 3 modulars per customer, I bet they'll not be complaining :)
  • MinifigsMeMinifigsMe Member Posts: 2,844
    I'm so in love with my modular buildings. I'm not an obsessive collector (thankfully) but I'm am currently obsessive about lego. I may get the greengrocer as ebay prices recently
    seem to be about £190 - which is a LOT, don't get me wrong, but perhaps doable.
    So my advice is to buy now, for sure! There's a lot more pleasure in a long, intricate build then 10 vehicles or whatever.

    My big dilemma is whether to take a gamble and invest in a couple of firebrigades for resell later...I don't have heaps of spare cash, but I could sit it out for around 6 months or so...perhaps....but in reality I want to spend that money on sets I can play with now!! (I just built the pig farmer, and so now of course I need a farm!)
  • IstokgIstokg MichiganMember Posts: 2,322
    Yes.... we really can't predict the future... I could very well be wrong... but I am always dubious of the words "Limited Edition".... I usually run the other way! ;-)
  • thesinisterpenguinthesinisterpenguin Member Posts: 96
    I wish I had the income to buy all of the modular sets that are still available at RRP! I'm hopefully going to get the Pet Shop for my bday in June, but would love to get a couple of the others too!
  • Halberd777Halberd777 Member Posts: 32
    Or you could do what I did. I am an overly avid castle fan. My wife helped build a few sets with me like the Medieval Market Village. I bought the Grand Emporium for her (she loves shopping). She loved building it and quite honestly I was astounded by all the intricacies. There is so much detail just to the Grand Emporium alone that I know we will be buying the others.

    I can at least vouch for the Grand Emporium you need to get it and trust me I do not buy anything that can't fit into my castle theme so this means alot for me to endorse the modular sets.
  • yys4uyys4u USA SoCalMember Posts: 1,092
    Wow you guys put out some really good arguments. At first I was getting a lot of talk about skipping it, but I think as this topic took off a little more the fans for the sets started being heard. I'm definitely leaning towards getting them now, but it's still not set in stone yet. I would really like to get the Grand Emporium, it just seems like so much more fun, but I understand the Fire Brigade will probably be the first to go, so that's the one I need to buy ASAP.

    On a separate note, I was checking Bricklink for prices on the retired sets, and noticed the Pet Shop is up now, with two of the sellers being in USA. I guess that means its starting to hit the shelves and times running out!!
  • vwong19vwong19 San DiegoMember Posts: 1,188
    Pet Shop is supposed to be officially on sale tomorrow. The clock is ticking for the other sets. Since I already have one built of each.... the questions is how many of you who already have one are getting a second Fire Brigade or Emporium?
  • mrpolemrpole Member Posts: 15
    Not to hijack the thread or anything, but Im wondering what everyone's opinion is on putting these sets together piece by piece on bricklink. I've found that usually some of the more rare sets can be put together this way (if you dont care about the minifigs) at a reasonable cost. What do you think are the pros and cons of doing it this way?
  • mrpolemrpole Member Posts: 15
    Thanks rocao.
  • vwong19vwong19 San DiegoMember Posts: 1,188
    edited May 2011
    @mrpole: you definitely have to do your research for each particular set. For example, Market Street is going for $500 on Bricklink the last time I saw. You would think that since the set includes about 1000 pieces, you could get the set for $150 if you can get pieces at an average of $.15. Unfortunately there are several rare elements to this set that drive up the cost. For example the set requires 5 dark blue arches ($10/ea), 79 dark blue 1x4 bricks ($1/ea), 4 white hoses ($5/ea).... so if you add just those together you're paying $149 for 88 of the 1000+ pieces. That's not including shipping. I'm not discouraging you doing it, but make sure it's feasible before you start.... get the rare elements first, otherwise you'll be left with a big hole in your project. Another thing to consider is to wait and hope that some of these rare parts are included in future sets for possible cannibalization.

    I built Market Street via Bricklink so I'm well aware of the difficulties. On a positive note, having completed that project has given me an appreciation for those people who create their own creations from bricks sourced through Bricklink or Pick a Brick.
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    ^ If you did Market Street in a different colour though, it'd be a different story, right? Any idea how much that might cost, as I'm tempted to try it.
  • bahnstormerbahnstormer Member Posts: 180
    saw a (badly) built pet shop at the store in frankfurt tonight. the staff confirmed they had them in stock but couldnt sell them til tomorrow.

    the summer catalogue should be available this week, they were still waiting for their delivery.
  • MatthewMatthew Cheshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 3,735
    So that would suggest that [email protected] will be selling the summer sets this week?
  • vwong19vwong19 San DiegoMember Posts: 1,188
    @Si_Dorking_Surrey_UK: If you don't use the dark blue and white hose (they have black at pick a brick), then you can easily construct that set for about $150 or less. I'm not good with matching colors, but some other complimentary color schemes must be out there.... (i.e. green and dark green; sand and brown; pink and brick red). It would be pretty neat to see several different colored Market Street in a block.
  • AETerryAETerry Member Posts: 48
    I do like the Modular Buildings and with Pet Shop coming out, I am greatly considering jumping in if the Fire Brigade and Grand Emporium haven't convinced me. The stalling point of course is budget and price, plus where would I put them for display.

    As to Green Grocer, Cafe Corner and Market Street, I missed those as I honestly didn't care... and Cafe Corner would or could be the only one I'd regret and pine for some days. Such is life. I do have other themes I'm "gunning" for to collect and I'll be looking to see what I can afford in the long term.
  • brickmaticbrickmatic Member Posts: 1,071
    @Istokg "... but I see all the hype of the new series of Minifigs... being cranked out by TLG by the zillions... and wonder... hmmmm will that bubble burst at some point?"

    Yes. I definitely think that the current price for CMF is higher than their intrinsic worth, therefore we have a classic bubble on hand. It will burst at some point. However, I think the S1 and even S2 figures, on the other hand, are not overvalued and were not overvalued during the original sale run. Since S1 and S2 saw shorter manufacturing runs, the figures are more rare. Also being the first sets of its kind provide the added value we see with such objects like a first edition book. When we got to S3, the levels of production increased making the items less rare. Pricing increased as well making purchase less compelling. If you're looking at CMFs as an investment, I don't think they really are anymore.

    Now, I generally buy LEGO not as an investment but because I like it. That said, I do like getting a good value for my money. With regards to Modular Buildings, these truly are a good value to buy on the primary market (i.e. normal retail of current sets, not Bricklink, Ebay, or the likes), as an enthusiast and as an investor. The models are beautiful and they impress AFOLs and the general public alike. They are filled with interesting building techniques and cute details. They are very satisfying to build. As a set, they merit being valued highly. Now, to add icing on the cake, if you look at the parts that make the whole, you then see the real steal that Modular Building are. With US prices, the building tend to be under 7 cents per piece. Compare that to the price per piece on your favorite sets. We're on the low end here. I don't see sets going for less than 6 cents per piece and often times they go for 10 or 11 cents. Your bucket of bricks tends to be at the 7 cent level, but a bucket of bricks doesn't have as a nice part selection as the modular houses do. So even if you were to buy the sets for new bricks, throwing away all the packaging and instructions and parting the whole thing out for MOCs, I still think it would be a good value.

    Oh, and finally, if you're collecting it, they tend to only come out with one a year, so that's only 6 cents a day coming out of your wallet to stay up to date. (It's a different story if you're bent on getting missed sets of course, but you don't need to. Get the stuff that is out now.)
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    edited May 2011
    Just came across this, and thought this thread needed a picture :)

    image

    All of the official modulars released so far, not including the pet shop WHICH IS RELEASED TODAY!!!!! It's not on [email protected] yet though.....
  • thesinisterpenguinthesinisterpenguin Member Posts: 96
    Looks like you've run out of space for Modulars though!
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    ^ I should add, that's not a pic of my house, its just one I found on flickr!
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