LEGO Technic 42040 Fire Plane Building Kit Review
Despite seeing the finished product of this build on its box, and thinking that it’s one of the best-looking Lego Technic builds in a really long while, a lot of people were still skeptical about the Lego 42040, also known as the Technic Fire Plane. Most Lego Technic builds are meant to be for children ages nine and older. But when it comes to this build, they no longer stick to the usual traditional Lego bricks, and are replaced by hundreds of little connectors instead.
Some of these past Lego Technic builds have been more substantial and complex. The Technic Fire Plane is no different, all thanks to the various pieces included in it.
After opening up the box, you will come across dozens of bags, and one of the first things you will notice upon opening it is that it’s vastly different to the usual Lego Technic sets. These bags don’t have numbers on them. A quick browsing through the instruction booklet will inform you that this is a straight build, instead of the sectioned ones that you’re probably accustomed to in past manuals.
Perhaps one of the best things about the Lego 42040 is that this is actually a two-in-one build, much like most of Lego’s sets. This basically means that you can choose to construct either a Fire Plane or a Fighter Jet – It’s all up to you. Both of them do contain their own instruction manuals, which informs you about how complex it is to construct both models.
After you have managed to set down the contents of the box and empty them out on the floor in piles and piles of black bricks, you’re going to have to settle for the first half of the build, which is the Fighter Jet.
For those who are a tad bit inexperienced in the world of Lego Technic builds, these sets revolve mostly around small black connectors. It doesn’t take too long for you to learn that thanks to these tiny pieces, it’s now better to sort these bricks into various colors. In the case of the Technic Fire Plane, the main colors you will see here are blue, red, black, and grey. This way, you can source out all of the right pieces and quicken up the building time.
The build takes at least two hours to complete, without stopping. This will pretty much give you an idea as to how much this set will give you and your kids (if you have any). It is priced at around $44.99.
After you have finished the Fighter Jet build, you will see that it looks just as amazing as it does on the box. It’s got its own operatic landing gear, which you can move both upwards and downwards by switching on the engine exhaust located at the back. There are a couple of wing flaps which are controlled with the help of a joystick-like device located on the top side of the plane. You can throw this right into a main windbreaker located on the same side, and close or open up the cockpit window. This gives you plenty more additional features to the finished build, which measures a total of six inches long.
The build is also equipped with several extras, which means a couple of simple steps will let your minifigure pilot climb right into the cockpit as well. There’s also a highly-detailed fuel pump with a turning handle, in case you need to refuel after you have won an air battle or rehearsed for an air show, at least.
Young children will surely be impressed with the Fighter Jet side of the build. But now we move on to its other iteration – The Fire Plane!
The Fire Plane is the main attraction of the Lego 42040. It looks absolutely wonderful once you’re done building it. But if you want to build this side of the set, then that means you’re going to have to dismantle the Fighter Jet first – Or at least buy another set, if you have the cash for it. You must now take heed of all the things you have learned while constructing the Fighter Jet, and once again begin sorting the blocks into colors. Much like the Fighter Jet build, the Fire Plane also takes two hours to build. But it’s all worth it in the end.
The Fire Plane build also contains plenty of working parts, including a front propeller, whose purpose is to turn around while you move the plane forward. There are also loads of flaps included here, which was thought to be an an exclusive trait in the Fighter Jet build. But perhaps the cherry on top here has got to be the blue water blocks, which you can position inside the Fire Plane using a flap found on top of the build. You can release this and drop it down to the fiery pits below, all thanks to a lever which you can push around. This lever is also found on top of the plane.
Much like the Fighter Jet, your kids will love the Fire Plane as well – If not more than its twin. Some smaller accessories and minifigures could even fit inside the plane’s compartment, meaning you could get them to parachute out of the plane which is slightly funny and creative at the same time. The build costs $45, which is actually quite reasonable thanks to the numerous purposes of both builds, as well as the extra parts and complexities that came when constructing both the Fire Plane and Fighter Jets. Despite the Lego 42040 being a set targeted towards older children, its huge playability will also appeal to younger kids too.
The Lego 42040 measures around 34 centimeters x 44 centimeters x 17 centimeters, which is actually quite large considering the amount of pieces it currently has. There are 578 in total, and each piece costs around 8.7 cents. The set looks really wonderful thanks to its fire service pattern, as well as its lovely set of stickers. One thing that people like about this build is the look of the propellers, as well as the cockpit in the front of the plane. These propellers spin around like a real plane would, and the two-cylinder engine works nicely each time you push them across the floor. But this doesn’t happen when you actually take the plane out to fly. Its allerons can be moved around when you grab a joystick located at the back of the plane. You can also turn the plane’s rudders manually. The main purpose of this build, however, is that each time you pull a lever located on the top of the plane, it automatically releases a set of water bricks that are also incorporated inside this set.
The other model you can create with the Lego 42040 is the Fire Jet, which looks really amazing, and comes with a starter and ladder built separately. The main purpose for this is to create a form of retractable landing gear, a working air brake, adjustable ailerons, as well as an opening cockpit. The starter units allow the engine to turn around.
To sum it all up, this set is just wonderful and the price makes everything worth it. Its main functions all work nicely as well, but the only concern that people have here is that they wish there was a way to spin those propellers around while the plane is in mid-air – Because that’s what a plane is meant to do here. The Fire Plane has more functions as compared to the Fighter Jet, but it’s not as huge as the former one, and the separate builds are a tad bit unnecessary here. Aside from that, this set is just plain enjoyable in itself – Especially for children.
There are elements here that can control the pitch, roll, and yaw found on actual planes. You can operate them with the aid of a lever which you can see above the fuselage in between the plane’s vertical stabilizer, as well as the cabin.
Also included is an LBG axle with its own towball. This is a function that some of its owners claim to be closely connected to the water compartment doors being opened up and closed down – Although some owners might not think this part is convincing. Not a lot of people can see how you can open or close up the doors here, unless they were meant to be closed by hand.
There’s also been confirmation regarding the build’s other suspected features, such as: 1.) Working allerons on every wing, 2.) Working rudders right behind the vertical stabilizers, and 3.) Working elevators. Other things that people may have heard about this specific build is that its propellers are driven from its landing gears beneath the floats, since this one plays along with the model on its surface. There are five to seven new trapezoid panels found in a white color. Also included is a 2-cylinder engine located at the front of the plane. A compartment that opens and releases several 2 x 2 round bricks is found here too.