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Best set for a good variety of different pieces

historymanhistoryman Member Posts: 364
edited September 2012 in Everything else LEGO
I am just starting to venture away from the Lego sets with complete instructions and I instead want to begin to create more imaginative models. I realise that I will need a large collection of different pieces. What would be the best/most affordable way to do this? What pieces would you recommend?


  • The_Brick_BuilderThe_Brick_Builder Member Posts: 658
    I'd suggest good LEGO lots on eBay and Craigslist. If you want new, Bricks and More sets from LEGO are great. If you're looking for specific bricks, it depends on the set. :)
  • historymanhistoryman Member Posts: 364
    Thanks for the reply. I could easily see myself accumulating a lot of different bricks/pieces over time. However, as a starting point I would really like a kit with enough selection for a bit of imaginative building. Can anyone think of one specific set to buy?
  • mressinmressin Lego City... erm LondonMember Posts: 843
    I found Alien Conquest Earth Defense HQ (#7066) pretty good.
  • graphitegraphite USMember Posts: 3,247
    For buildings, it would depend if you're looking at, Creator style house building, or Modular line building as the piece content is slightly different, but both of those are typically good value for parts with a good variety. If going new that is.
  • caperberrycaperberry LondonMember Posts: 2,226
    First and foremost: you can never have too many 1x1s :O)

    Yes it does depend on your building style, or what you think that might be! Think about the sets that you really enjoyed building and what inspires you. One man's BURP is another man's NPU. Perhaps Mini Modulars would be good? It doesn't come on discount, but it is good value and has wide variety of SMALL interesting pieces. If you live near a Brand Store, the PAB Wall would be great for starting out, you can get basic and a few interesting bricks dead cheap.

    Personally I would start by parting your sets out, if you're prepared to do that. Sort them by part type rather than colour, you'll get an idea of where you are lacking. You may well have enough parts already to build loads of cool stuff.

    My thought process when I came out of my Dark Age and faced your challenge went like this; Why buy a set full of pieces I don't want when I can spend that same money on BrickLink and have 100% of what I want? But Bricklink is not cheap, so I have to limit myself somehow. What I really want is as many different pieces as possible - so if I buy only one colour, I stop myself from buying the same piece over and over in various colours. And if I ever built something I like, I can then buy the colours for the model.

    This worked for me. I got a really good knowledge of parts, and didn't get into buying sets - and lots of other colours - for about 1.5 years.

    I chose light blay - it's neutral, common (so you get lots of parts in that colour), is often cheaper than other colours, plus I like gray!
  • peterlinddkpeterlinddk DenmarkMember Posts: 170
    I certainly recommend the sets in the Creator-line - especially when they are on sale, you get a lot of different bricks for a reasonable price, and you get a lot of building inspiration as well.

    I've bought about half of the Creator houses (#5771, #5891 and #6754) and have dissassambled and reassambled especially 6754 many times, since I tend to like to build desert and beach-scenes.

    Imagine something that you are going to build, and either buy some Creator-sets of the same kind - i.e. if you are building a car, buy some vehicles, if you are building a house, buy some houses. OR buy some Creator-sets that have the colors that you see in your design - if you are going to build something forresty, then maybe #6743 and #5766 would be ideal.

    But, do look for sets on sale - LEGO bricks never goes stale, but the older sets tend to be a lot cheaper. Oh, and avoid licensed sets, they are way more expensive pr. brick.
  • historymanhistoryman Member Posts: 364
    Thanks for the very detailed reply. I guess I need to do some serious thinking about what I want to design/build so that I can decide on the best way to source the necessary bricks.
  • mathewmathew Member Posts: 2,097
    It depends on what you want to build. Most of us like to do buildings. The log cabin is great for parts if you like reddish brown. The lighthouse is good too and has more variety. If your thing is castles then definitely pick up Helm's Deep while it's cheap and available. Unless you're into vehicles then avoid Star Wars (over priced) and the "kid" themed stuff like City because they often use less useful, larger bricks (I'm not sure of the acronym).

    I personally find myself drawn to micro building. It's easier to visualize what's in my head on a smaller scale. The negative to micro scale is possibly less detail and it's harder to incorporate minifigures. The benefit is needing fewer bricks. I plan on purchasing the mini modulars as soon as I can budget it.
  • caperberrycaperberry LondonMember Posts: 2,226
    To contradict myself a bit - I'm sure you'll enjoy whatever pieces you buy and find ways to use them well. Hey, it's a 'System of Play' - you can make all sorts out of LEGO! And being limited in pieces requires greater creativity.

    I would say a common thread in much AFOL MOCing is to achieve greater detailing than official LEGO models do. LEGO Designers need to ensure kids can build models and pieces don't get "stressed" by the minuscule pressures when they are connected together in non-standard ways. But as an AFOL you only need to ensure it holds together well enough to be photographed or displayed, or simply enjoyed by yourself!

    So to return to your original question! - I'd suggest you include some of these pieces...
    SNOT bricks & brackets, jumper plates, tiles, the panels that are 1x high, plates with 'door rail', simple bars, various pieces with clips.

    You'll find all sorts of amazing techniques and uses of these bricks in MOCs on certain sites. Personally I like Flickr; there are all sorts of LEGO groups there.
  • StuBoyStuBoy New ZealandMember Posts: 623
    Someone else mentioned the Basic Bricks Deluxe set, what about Fun With Wheels as well?

    Its got a wide variety of different parts, not just standard bricks. You can never have enough hinges, headlights, brackets etc, you'll find a multitude of uses for them.
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409
    I think a lot of people overlook the Lego Education line when it comes to these sorts of parts:

    That is a search for all of them, specifically I think the following are worth looking at:

    #9385 - Sceneries Set
    #9335 - Space & Airport Set
    #9333 - Vehicles Set
    #9389 - Community Starter Set
    #9314 - Rescue Services Set

    These are rather generic, but do contain a lot of parts in uncommon shapes that don't come in the "brick buckets".

    The price is usually less than 10 cents a part, depends on who is selling at any given minute, but I've found good deals here from time to time.

    For example, right now #9385 is being sold by Amazon for $78.55 and it has 1,207 parts, that is 6.5 cents a part. If you want those parts, it is a good deal.

    Of course, if you don't, it isn't. :)
  • JoeysGirlJoeysGirl Heartlake CityMember Posts: 11
    The Lego Build & Play Box (4630) is a great set. It has 1000 pieces, and a lot of them are extremely useful. Toys R Us sells it on their website for $60, but I was extremely fortunate to snag it for $40 this past weekend, due to a Labor Day sale. I love the set. It has all kinds/colors of bricks, plus other pieces like wheels & tires, roof pieces, faces/eyes (no mini figures though).
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