Way back in 2008 the LEGO Group and Danish energy group Vestas partnered up, which resulted in a special promotional LEGO® set being created for Vestas. Set 4999 was based on the Vestas Wind Turbine, which back then was an innovation in clean renewable energy. Fast forword to 2018 and the LEGO Group’s commitment to green, planet friendly production is as strong as ever. This year LEGO introduced elements created using sugar cane-based plastic and their goal of producing fully sustainable products continues. Which is the perfect opportunity to re-introduce Vestas Wind Turbine. The original set was only available to Vestas employees and partners, making it a tricky set to own. This newly updated version features the same basic set with its Power Function but introduces a few different pieces, improved build techniques and of course it the first retail set to feature those new sugar cane elements. Let’s take a closer look.
Celebrate green energy innovation with the LEGO® Creator Expert 10268 Vestas Wind Turbine. Developed in partnership with Vestas, this detailed, motorized LEGO model captures the elegance and graceful movement of a traditional wind turbine and features a new-for-January 2019 spruce tree, manufactured from sustainably sourced plant-based plastic. At approximately 39” (1m) high, the structure towers above a wooded hill and a house with furnished patio, mailbox, flowers and a white picket fence. Turn the nacelle left or right and switch on the included Power Functions motor to rotate the adjustable wind turbine blades and illuminate the cottage’s porch light. This collectible model has been designed to provide a challenging and rewarding building experience with a touch of nostalgia and makes a great display piece for the home or office. This big LEGO set also includes a Vestas service vehicle and 3 minifigures: 2 Vestas service technicians kitted out with safety helmets and a woman, plus a dog figure.
- Set Name: Vestas Wind Turbine
- Set Number: 10268
- Pieces: 826
- RRP: £159.99
- Measurements: 100 cm high, 62cm wide and 31cm deep
- Availability: Exclusive to LEGO Brand Retail Stores & shop.LEGO.com
Before we get to the actual set let’s take a moment to cover the box and instructions. Unlike the original set, this new version is now branded as part of the LEGO Creator Expert range. Although the design is similar, with the Power Functions highlighted on the front, there is also a badge to promote the newly included ‘Plants from Plants’ elements as well. The instructions feature a number of pages which give a little bit of background on the partnership between the LEGO Group and Vestas, as well as the use of wind power, the comminited to use sustainable materials in all LEGO products. I like it when instructions have things like this as it adds to the overall build experience as well as being informative.
First thing you’ll notice is bags have no numbers. I dread sets like this as I lack the space to be able to build them. Although there are those who enjoy the ‘old school’ nature of a mass of parts, which you have to sort through to find the bit you need, for those with little space it can be a be tricky. Thankfully I have saved the plastic trays from past LEGO advent calendars, which I used to sort all the little elements into. This still left a bed full of the larger pieces. Although a little stressful at first, once everything was sorted, the build could begin.
The first thing you build is the Vestas van, it’s a little different to the original with the new company branding but the actual build it near on identical. In the back is a couple of ‘shelves’ either side of the van’s rear. These are used to hold a slide out platform, which features a number of tools, a workbench and a sack barrel trolley. Complete with a welding kit and some of the newer bagged tools.
Next up is the cottage building, featured at the base of the turbine, despite it’s questionable location, it actually acts as a sort of counterweight to the turbine. The build of the cottage also feels like the sets I use to build as a kid. Which brought back memories of playing with the classic Fire Stations, Hospitals and Airports I had in the 8o’s. The red and black colour scheme also invokes sets of the 70s. The actual building is quite simple with a open rear, allowing access to the a basic kitchen and room set-up. But the best part of the cottage are the set of lights built into the porch of the door section. It’s not often we see official lights in LEGO sets. In fact beyond the Light & Sound sets I had when I was younger, I’ve never built a LEGO set with this sort of light.
The lights are part of the Power Functions system, so are wired and need to be connected to the PF battery box. As this is located in the hill areas behind the cottage, the wires need to be hidden and they are surprising well. The bulbs sections of the lights perfectly fit into a couple of 1×1 bricks sets behind a pair of clear 1×1 bricks.
Set behind the cottage is a small hill areas, on which the turbine sits on top, well almost but more on that later. The hill is mainly made from a selection of BURP pieces. BURP or Big Ugly Rock Piece are prefabricated elements that are often used to create large land masses without using masses of bricks. They aren’t really used as much these days, which is another sign of the sets past life. However they do a great job of covering up the anchor point for turbines mast and the battery box.
Despite the sheer size of the turbine, it’s surprisingly simplistic is terms of building. The mast is made from a series of tank upper and base pieces, connected together with Technic pins. Inside this runs two PF extension cables connecting the battery box to the PF motor inside the turbine nacelle. The base of the mast is connected to the baseplate with an impressive little construction, neatly and securely enclosed behind the BURP hill. However with the turbine mast protruding from the hill, it looks as if it begins on the hill. A door on the back of the mast also helps to achieve this visual impression.
Finally is the huge three bladed rotor, which has a surprisingly wide span. Each blade is built from a selection of plate elements and connectors to the central section via a couple of offset Technic pins. This is connected to a Technic axis rod, which runs into the casing of the turbine. This is also made from a selection of plate elements, including two printed plates, which feature the new Vestas branding. These plates are fastened onto the nacelle with a couple of Technic connector pins. Which does make it a little unstable. Something which can also be said about the much of the rest of the set. Thanks to the tinner plastic used for the baseplates, once a mass of bricks are placed on top, any sort of movement will result in bricks becoming loose. That doesn’t mean the actual turbine mask will instantly fall over, in fact that the most stable part of the hold thing, it just means it’s not advisable to move it around a lot.
Once the set is complete, now comes the best part – to see your creation come to life. The Power Functions were part of the original set and worked well enough to be implemented in the exact same way. The battery box is set within the hill section and is also where you’ll find the switch to get the whole thing going. Once you power up the turbine, the porch lights in the cottage illuminate and the huge rotor starts to spin.
Although the original set also featured three minifigures and a dog, those included here and all new for the 2018 set. The two Vestas engineers now sport new blue hard hats and their torso’s featured printed Vestas ‘V’ logos. The female minifigure features an all new a new torso, light blue legs, a different face print and new hair. Finally the dog is a new version which was introduced in 2010.
Plants From Plants
One of the main reasons this set has been yanked from the vaults for a re-release it not because the original set is so rare but to showcase the new plant-based material used to create the tree elements. A new plastic has created from sugarcane, hence the plant from plants tagline. This is the first retail set to feature these new elements which look and feel just like any other LEGO element. The hope is by 2030 all core LEGO products will use this new material. Learn more about LEGO Plants from Plants here.
Having not built the original set, it’s tricky to compare beyond its visual appearance. The set looks almost identical, albeit a few visual tweaks here and there. But you can definitely tell it’s an 10 year old set. Much of the building around the base of the turbine feels ‘old school’ especially the questionably placed cottage. As I built it up, I was instantly transported back to building the LEGOLAND sets, like the Police Station or Airport. Plus the hill section invokes that feeling as well, with its heavy use of BURP pieces. Which is why I surprisingly enjoyed building the set. I was dreading the lack of numbered build steps. A combination of little space to build and a wacky dog who loves to get ‘involved’ means spreading out 800+ elements is a military operation.
But then the fact, I had to open every bag and sort the elements into piles, added to the overall build experience, although I still prefer numbered bags. The Power Functions add to the impactful nature of the set, which is huge. Not only tall, as expected for a Wind Turbine, but was has a rather large ‘footprint’ thanks to the 32 x 32 baseplate and wide spanning rotor blades. Which makes the suggestion, featured in the instruction manual, of the set being a great desktop piece, slightly questionable. You’ll need somewhere roomy to display it and it’s certainly not the best set to move around. The combination of the classic tinner baseplate and the weighty bulk of the turbine and hill section, results in a little bit of part decompression. However it’s a great set to build and looks great when finished. Plus it’s the perfect set to be incorporated into a larger city scene and a nice reminder of the LEGO Group’s commitment to the environment. One issue is the price, it doesn’t feel like a £160 set, but there again the unique parts of Power Functions probably bump it up a little and I guess it’s cheaper than trying to get hold of the original set. The LEGO Creator Expert Vestas Wind Turbine will be available from Black Friday, November 23rd worldwide, exclusively from LEGO stores and shop.LEGO.com.
This set was provided via The LEGO Group for the purposes of review. The thoughts and opinions of the set reflect those of BricksFanz and not that of the LEGO Group.