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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
on November 8, 2010
There are hundreds of models in these books and, unless you've got a massive storehouse of LEGO Technic parts in your 10,000 square foot basement, you may not have all of the parts you need in order to build a particular model.

We want to help you find those parts. To that end, Yoshihito Isogawa has prepared a hyperlinked list of the more unique parts in the books to help you to find them at the Bricklink website. We can't post a direct link to that list here, but here's how to find it on our website:

(1) Go to the main No Starch Press website
(2) Search for the word "technic"
(3) Click the first search item that comes up ("LEGO Technic Idea Book Complete Set")
(4) When you reach that page, click the link that says "See the parts list for the books," which you'll see just underneath the red text that says "Buy the whole set and save . . ."

or, if you can read between the lines, try:

nostarch dot com /technic

Please remember that these are idea books; buying these books is not like buying a pre-packaged LEGO set. As such, you're encouraged to explore and invent with LEGO. Many of our readers draw considerable inspiration from the pictures of Isogawa's models alone and I hope that you will, too.

Sincerely,

William Pollock, Founder
No Starch Press
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on June 24, 2012
I've had all three of Isogawa's Technic Idea books for a while now. After reading some of the reviews and comments here, I felt compelled to contribute some information to this discussion. The point I want to make is that these books are *Idea Books*, not *cookbooks*. You would have guessed that from the book title, but reading through the reviews here, it appears that this isn't obvious, so let me explain.

But before I do, in Mr. Isogawa's own words: "This book is full of little seeds for ideas. It is you who will cultivate these seeds so they will grow into wonderful masterpieces." This means that this book is full of ideas, not ready made recipes that you would find in a cookbook. There's no list of ingredients, and also no step-by-step instructions to make everything. If you want full instructions, this may not be the right book for you.

This book has numerous examples that show the essential principles of building LEGO vehicles. It also shows how you can use LEGO motors to make your vehicles move. And here's where "all those expensive rare components" come in. Truth is, you really don't need all these pieces.

The best example is the use of motors. Pages 4-17 show you many working examples of motor powered vehicles. All of these vehicles do the same: move when you switch on the motor, so you really need to build only one of them. Now, all these vehicles illustrated on these pages use *6 different types* of LEGO motors (to be clear, only one motor per vehicle). The author has done this so that literally *anyone with any LEGO motor* can build this little car.

So you really need just one motor. And once you've followed Mr. Isogawa's suggestions on how to mount your particular motor on a (any) LEGO construction, you're ready to add this motor to all of the other special vehicles in this book - even if it doesn't picture your motor. All motors do the same. Just plug and play.

Clearly the same goes for wheels. Every wheel will work. And if your wheels are too big to fit the example car, just make the car bigger. After all, that's the point of this book: inspire you to build your own creations.

While the author has kindly provided a parts list that show the pieces used in this book, I actually do not recommend to buy pieces based on this list. Rather, I would suggest that you buy one of the bigger LEGO Technic Sets, especially one with at least one motor. That's much more pieces for your money, plus you can build an awesome truck or bulldozer when you're done building wheeled wonders.

And instead of going to Bricklink to hunt down rare pieces, search for "Peeron", which is a site that shows which pieces can be found in each LEGO set. Just enter the part number of the LEGO set and find what's in it. You can still buy that great looking truck, but be sure to use this site to check that it includes some gears, wheels and a motor so you're good to go to build the vehicles in this book.

And as with any LEGO related product, a child may need a little guidance. A child won't read this review, but if you read it, just build something together with your kid and show them what I said here. They'll get it, and I'm sure you'll like the LEGO experience too.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on October 11, 2010
Some of the most sought after LEGO sets from the past include the Technic supercars. Built to a larger scale than the usual LEGO sets, these models had many of the same functions of a real sports car, such as steering, suspension and transmissions. However, building a model of that complexity without having built one of the sets has been a major challenge. As a result, there are only a few fan supercars out there.

The LEGO Technic Idea Book: Wheeled Wonders is a book that shows builders how to make such features in LEGO fashion. Using photos and some simple diagramming, the book shows in a very clear way how to make motorized models that can drive, steer, and do other things, thanks to some gearing. Different motors are used in the models, so adapting from one type to another is not difficult.

What's amazing is that some of the models are wonderfully elegant. Using basic parts, a car can be built that hugs table edges. No computers needed! Another model uses a polarity switch for a car that reverses when it hits a wall. Ingenious solutions are throughout the book and provide inspiration for both the beginning builder and experienced Technic builder.

This is the second of the LEGO Technic Idea book trilogy, so this is only about wheeled models. Butas the others, this is a good reference and inspiration for building things with movement. Highly recommended for any builder!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon December 2, 2010
Don't get me wrong, I really like 'The LEGO Technic Idea Book: Wheeled Wonders' but after perusing through it a bunch of times, I just couldn't give this 5 stars. The book is ENTIRELY an inspiration book with pictures of lots of cars that the author has made. The color JUMPS out of the book, the cars are neat, but there is only a MINIMAL amount of instruction on how to make these. So the reader looks at stuff the author makes and can try their best to replicate, but without some more guidance, it's more a coffee table book than anything else. If there were less machines and just a tiny bit of instruction, this would easily be 5 stars. However, 4 stars isn't bad, and it's still a nice pick up for the LEGO enthusiast.

**** RECOMMENDED
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on October 28, 2010
Overall this is a wonderful series from Mr.Isogawa. All pictures, no text, love that.
The paper and print for this book is top-notch.

Only thing missing is that it does not have the instruction about how to get the required parts.
To sort out the part list and order them one by one from LEGO will cost a lot of time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 30, 2010
If you or someone you know is interested in expanding their LEGO building techniques or is seeking inspiration to build like a professional, this three book series is the answer.

I give the entire series of books five stars and the "Wheeled Wonders" book is worth a special mention as it covers just about every facet of LEGO mechanical motion. Although you will need a robust collection of LEGO motor parts to perfectly replicate Isogawa's suggestions, take note that this is an IDEA book, and even with a small amount of gears, wheels and motors you can have a lot of fun learning from this LEGO master.

Similar to the LEGO idea books from the 70's and 80's, this book series is chock full of clever creations, but instead of specifically describing how to build things like houses, spaceships or vehicles, these books take creativity to an even higher level by teaching the reader how to build foundational components that can be used to build practically anything.

Using full color photo illustrations and an intuitive icon-based index system, you can quickly find how to build mechanical walkers, automatic sliding doors, flexible vehicles, and much more. These books contain virtually no words beyond the first few pages, but this is no problem thanks to Isogawa's carefully arranged photographs that indicate where to place every piece.

Novice builders wishing to learn how to connect bricks in unique and interesting ways such as sideways, upside down or at angles will particularly enjoy the Simple Machines book, whereas Mindstorms robotics fans and LEGO Technic fans will enjoy the entire series due to the frequent use of gears and beams to achieve startling results.

Whereas the titles of these books aptly describe the bias towards technical creations, all three books should be on the shelf of every serious LEGO fan.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 4, 2012
It's a great book to learn mechanisms. However, it uses older older lego parts that are no longer available. A child using this book now would have a tough time trying to make some of these things. It could be better using current lego parts.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 23, 2012
This is a terrific book. The author is a genius coming up with imaginative use of Technics andLego parts to make pieces come alive with motion.
But....even though there is a link given in the book for what parts are needed the list is not specific at all. For example I tried to assemble a Technic wheel and attach it to a frame. I could not figure out what the join piece should be. The list doesn't say which one to use and Lego itself gives no clue which pieces turn upon joining and which pieces are static (non-turning). That's kinda important don't you think? The join piece I used would not allow the wheel to turn.

If a parts list were available online this book would be a 10!
Right now it is a big challenge and I'm not the one supposed to be challenged, the kids are.
If anyone can direct me to a User group that has listed specific parts needed for each page PLEASE email or post the address here.
I would be eternally grateful. My project has a deadline and I will probably abandon this if I can't get a parts list itime.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on October 13, 2012
Excellent, excellent book for my budding Lego engineer. He's 8 and beginning to explore Technics. He loves the fact that there are no words - just simple, easy-to-use instructions. I bought all 3 books and am saving the other two for Christmas. Unlike the brickmaker's own products that purport to teach building techniques, the author shows - over and over and over - the concept of gears and combining them to make vehicles that actually work. It's the repetition that's key, and the idea that once a builder gets it - he or she can move on in the book, and continue learning new configurations. A must-have book for any builder!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 18, 2014
My eight year old son received this for Christmas and has been flipping through it and building ever since. The pictures don't give a step by step, but set up the shots so you can get a clear idea of what needs to be used. Building like this is a little more difficult that the easy instructions in the box, but if you're an advanced enough Lego builder to have the Technic series, then these books are simple enough to understand, and even build off of.
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