October 27th, 2008

Computer Moose

You Get What You Pay For

You know that old adage, "You get what you pay for"? Well, I can say from personal experience that when it comes to less expensive Lego knock-offs, there is one brand that you do get what you pay for: Best-Lock Construction Toys. They certainly are "cheaper" than Legos in every sense of the word. For Tank's birthday, I bought a set from their War of the Planets collection, and it has been a nightmare from the moment I opened it. I had to return my original purchase because the instructions didn't match the bricks contained in the set, and when I exchanged it for a replacement (which did provide matching directions and parts) I found that the bricks don't stick together very well and the instructions difficult to decipher.

Over the course of a few hours spread out over the past week, I have yet to get the most complex spaceship put together. At various stages of construction, I've literally had the ship come apart in my hands as I've tried to apply the proper pressure to get the bricks to lock -- something I've never had happen with Lego bricks. The frustration is so great that I've been tempted to toss the completed segments against the wall in a fit of anger. I don't even want to begin to imagine what a child might feel when encountering the same problems.

So, this will mark both the first and last time I buy a Best-Lock set for Tank. Hopefully, it won't be a complete loss and when they're mixed in with Lego-brand bricks maybe adhesion will be less of a problem. However, it wouldn't be surprised on bit to find us tossing many of the bricks from this set as the years go by.