Review - 31104-1 - Monster Burger Truck
SUNDAY! SUNDAY! SUNDAY!, Come on down to Rebrickables DESTRUCTION-DOME for carnage, explosions, engines bigger than a house, and more Americana than a bald eagle, with a stars and stripes tattoo, eating an apple pie...
...or maybe just read a post of me discussing a LEGO set and building it in a relatively calm enviroment, TODAY! TODAY! TODAY!
Monster Trucks are a relatively modern addition to LEGO's vehicular line up. Really only appearing in the last 10 years. I saw this set and my first thought was "Great, another monster truck, just what we need." But then I started actually looking into monster trucks and there's really not that many. I think the issue is they seem to come in waves, every couple of years we get 2 or 3 at the same time. The first major entry was set 42005-1, a Technic model in 2013, it was really impressive. The City theme released a Monster Truck themed set in 2013, 2014, 2018, and two in 2020. Along with Creator's two Monster Truck sets this wave we got four all at once. Creator also had one in 2018. I own City set 60180-1 and I'll do a comparison at the end of the build.
Budding cooks can hop onboard for a great building experience with the LEGO® Creator 3in1 Monster Burger Truck (31104) set. Kids can try their hand at running a food truck with this unique vehicle, filled with loads of brick-built details like a giant hamburger on the roof, foldable steps and a dog figure. Creative freedom Children get to explore 3 different build-and-play experiences in 1 with this LEGO Creator 3in1 set. They can make a monster burger truck, rebuild it into an off-roader or toy tractor pulling vehicle, or let their creativity loose and create whatever they want. This great building toy encourages imaginative play and makes a great Christmas present or birthday gift. Unique, stand-alone models LEGO Creator 3in1 sets offer kids models that are detailed and realistic and encourage imaginative play. The models provide endless building and play opportunities while helping to spark creativity in children of all ages. The fun sets make great gifts for kids for any occasion.
The box measures 380 x 260 x 70 mm. Inside are 3 bags numbered 1 to 3, four loose tyres (55976 Tyre 56 x 26 Balloon), a sticker sheet, and an instruction manual.
The instruction manual measures 195 x 175 mm. With 246 pages and:
- A Model: 158 total build steps.
- B Model: 92 total build steps.
- C Model: 75 total build steps.
The pdf can be downloaded here.
The set contains 498 parts and 30 spares, in 22 colors, and 34 part categories, with a total of 183 unique parts/color combinations.
Main colors are:
- White: 42 unique parts, 99 quantity.
- Black: 37 unique parts, 107 quantity.
- Light Bluish Gray: 19 unique parts, 52 quantity.
Main categories are:
- Plates: 35 unique parts, 137 quantity.
- Plates Special: 23 unique parts, 59 quantity.
- Plates Round and Dishes: 14 unique parts, 56 quantity.
No new parts, but a surprising new color for an old part, and a handful of rare parts
Parts in new colors:-
Okay, yes, technically this part isn't that old. But only this mold variation, which was introduced in 2013 (we think, with little help from LEGO, tracking exactly when a mold change happens can be tricky). This part is the third known variation of the 1x6x2 Arch. The mold it replaced was first introduced in 1971 (part 3307). So why did I say it's a new color for an old part? Because even when looking at old variations this is the first time you have been able to get a 1x6x2 Arch in Green which is one of LEGO's oldest (introduced in 1949) and most used (appearing 52212 times) colors.
Rare Parts (appearing in 3 or less sets):
This set comes with 2 minifigs.
Bag 1: The first thing we build are the accessories. The patio furniture is neat (although I think they put the 2x2 Tile with 2 Studs backwards) but the star of the set is that awesome little Dog.
A really well designed bit is the steps that slide away underneath the truck. It's effective and adds to the playability.
Bag 2: On the surface it appears there's not a lot of interesting stuff going on with this bag, but the front and rear sections are well built and help bring the truck to life. We also start building up the interior of the truck.
Bag 3: Finishing the model with a well thought out interior and absolutely fantastic Giant Burger. We also build a burger for a minifigure to eat, I think it's still a little on the large size though. I wonder if we'll ever get a molded burger part similar to part 53119 Plate Round 1 x 1 Swirled Top.
The B Model builds a really beefy (no burger pun intended) Jeep. Not the most interesting of builds but the final model is solid and fun.
The C Model really isn't great. It's painfully evident this is a stick-these-parts-together-and-see-what-we-get model. It's pretty much a brick on wheels. Luckily no-one buys a 3-in-1 set for the C-Model.
Here's the comparsion I promised at the top of the article. First off the food truck feels much larger than the blue moster truck even though it's just two studs wider, obviously the extra height helps too. Both are really great models that are fun to build and play with. But I think the Burger Food Truck gets the edge as a cool display vehicle. Also when comparing the functionality the food truck wins yet again. The suspension on the Blue Truck uses elastic bands which make the model bounce around well but compared to the Food Truck it looks amateurish. The Food Truck uses part 32580 Hose Soft Axle 7 which, during building, feels far too stiff to work well. But once complete creates such a realistic bounce, it gives life to each indiviual wheel, whereas the Blue Trucks movement is restricted to front or back axles.
I liked this set a lot. Mainly due to the A Model. It is so fun and well designed. Both the B and C models are a nice way to kill some time building LEGO but neither are that great that you'd keep them built to display or play with, unlike the A Model.
In terms of value for money, this is a pretty middle-of-the-road set. At $50 the price per part isn't bad, but may feel expensive if you only like the A model. There's not a ton of particularly interesting parts either so it may not be cost effective to get it as a parts pack (unless you really want a bunch of 4599b Tap 1 x 1 in lots of colors!