Review: Fairground Mixer

The LEGO Fairground Mixer set #10244 came out in June 2014, and includes some 1,746 pieces and a huge 11 minifigs. I was fortunate enough to win this as a prize, and I will say that I had not previously had much interest in the set. But since building it I wish I had gotten it when it first came out and will now be looking much more closely at the Ferris Wheel set that came out this year.

The Set

The set is much more than the mixer, it includes a working dunk tank, a working strength test, a two trucks and a host of other features.

The Mixer

The Fairground Mixer itself is built onto the back of a flatbed truck, like a real work one would be. It features three arms, each with four seats on the arm with a frame to hold a minifig in place Each arm is a different colour; red, yellow or blue, which is decorated with translucent bricks and glow in the dark tiles. 

The arms are powered through a simple gear setup, that runs from a control unit that sits at the end of the truck. The unit can be replaced with a power functions motor to give it automatic power, useful for a show or exhibition.

The setup is actually quite clever, only a single rod drives all 3 arms, which easily spin around the base. This spinning is what makes the arms move, so the pressure on drive arm is quite low. My only other model with a decent amount of moving parts is the Helicarrier, which was quite a let down in the moving parts.

The centre frame of the mixer is really well constructed and sturdy. By using hinged pieces and setting them at 60o the centre is a solid triangle that gives it a considerable amount of strength. This is probably one section of the model which offers some good build techniques. It also lets the arm fold down to be transported on the truck, while retaining strength in the model.

The mixer has a fence that can be deployed around it, with glow in the dark cones on the top of the fence posts. These pack away into a small compartment, which sits on the back of the flat bed when the mixer arms are packed away. 

The Prime Mover

The Prime Mover for the mixer itself is rather different from other LEGO trucks. Firstly it is a two seater, which makes it 8 studs wide rather than the more normal 6. Because of the size of the trailer, it feels not only nicely proportioned but also well weighted. It is a solid build. I also like the details in the front grill, and the way the doors are made. A few nice extra details really bring this pieces together.

 

Transport Truck

There is a small truck that has a flat bed, with space for the dunk tank, ticket booth on the back. Along with a slot underneath for the strength tester to fit in. All of the various loose pieces of the set also fit in this truck. A clever way of capturing the portability of fairgrounds.

The Dunk Tank

Who doesn't love a good old fashioned dunk tank. Complete with a fish, it seems. The set above the tank is also connected to the target on the side, so a successful hit will drop the minifig into the tank.

Ticket Booth

Like all fairgrounds, the ticket booth is needed. I like the red and white stripes made from the bricks, with the large sign using a number of flat round plates to give it that fairground light effect.

Strength Tester

You know the good old strength testers, whack the target and see if you can ring the bell. Well this has one too and it actually works. A small target sits at the bottom, with a loose piece sitting on a pole that gets knocked up when it gets hit. It also comes with two hammers, one normal sized one and another ridiculous "Harley Quinn" scaled one.

Minifigs

There are 12 different Minifigs that come with this set.

  1. A juggler, with a blue and white striped shirt, on red stilts.
  2. A lady for the dunk tank, in a wet suit
  3. A strong man
  4. A ticket booth lady in a purple shirt with grey hair
  5. A greasy carnie (ride operator) who also doubles as a truck drive
  6. A man looking like he is about to spew
  7. A girl with a teddy bear prize. Note the slightly different red hair
  8. A girl with a translucent green ice cream
  9. A boy with an orange ice crea
  10. A boy with a red shirt with 3 silver icons, and a ride ticket
  11. A woman with an orange shirt and sand green legs
  12. A woman with a tan pants and nice blue shirt.

The Build

At first appearances I thought this would be a quick and fairly simple build. I was surprised at the level of detail, and the length of time it took to build the model (See video below).

It took three and a half hours to build the 1700 pieces, spread across 3 booklets and more than 200 steps in the instructions. I was also pleased to see that instead of the usual habit of breaking the set down into a dozen smaller sections, each with their own bag (or bags) there were only 3 sections, one for each booklet. This added some of the fun and challenge to the build, having to sift through 600 pieces at each stage made it more fun.

There are little details throughout, mostly in the clever layering of colours across the mixer, and the substantial structure in the prime mover.

Summary

For a set that I was initially hesitant about getting, I really wish I had gotten it some time ago. Not only is there a lot of fun in the model, with the mixer arms, the dunk tank and the strength test but there is a great richness in the build and the finished model.

I probably will look at getting the ferris wheel, as it seems like a good companion. Same too with any future models that come out in the line of fairgrounds.

And although this is a fairly expensive model, for the amount of pieces you get along with the number of minifigs plus the depth of things you can do and the fun it offers I really think it is great value for money.

My only slight criticism is that packing the mixer away for transport is a little tiresome and difficult.

  • Set: Fairground Mixer 10244
  • Pieces: 1746
  • Minifigs: 12
  • Price: $199.99 AUD
  • Value for Money: 5/5
  • Design: 5/5
  • Playability: 5/5