Review - 42052 - Heavy Lift Helicopter






Helicopters, planes...basically everything airborne is +1 for me. The [url=""]9396 - Helicopter[/url] is one of my favorite models. I own three copies, which says it all. the news about a new helicopter made me very excited. The news about twin rotors made me even more excited. Although I must admit I was hoping for a Chinook style tandem rotor, instead of a double rotor where one is positioned on top of the other. This set does come with a Chinook style B-model, so maybe that will be worth building. One thing I immediately like better than the 9396 is the color scheme. I love the bright orange-white combination. This set seems to have a huge number of panels, which is not to everyone's liking. Let's find out what's going on underneath that smooth surface! [i]Note: All images can be clicked for hi-res versions.[/i]


Number: [b]42052[/b] Title: [b]Heavy Lift Helicopter[/b] Theme: [b]Technic[/b] Released: [b]2016[/b] Part Count: [b]1042[/b] Box Weight: [b]1831 gr[/b] Box Dimensions: [b]57,0 cm x 37,3 cm x 8,0 cm[/b] Set Price (MSRP): [b]€ 119,99[/b] Price per Part: [b]€ 0,115[/b] Links: [url=""]Brickset[/url], [url=""]Bricklink[/url]


The box is fairly big, which indicates a pretty big model. Unfortunately the box was damaged. Some cracks and dents, but luckily it wasn't ripped apart, like my Mercedes box. I'm not sure if TLG sends out the sets the same way when they sell via S&H, because I would be slightly disappointed to receive my sets like this. Update: I've seen more complaints about wrecked and/or damaged boxes, so there's room for improvement in the shipping department. The front of the box shows the helicopter lifting it's load. The model is 60 cm long and 53 cm wide. It also shows the contra-rotating rotors. As you can see an M-motor and battery box are included, so there are some powered functions. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]BACK[/b] The back of the box shows which functions are powered. We will deal with the functions later. It also shows the Chinook style B-model, which has motorised functions too. Looking at the front of the B-model I am not very tempted to build it. It looks like a flying guinea-pig :laugh: [url=""][img][/img][/url]


The box contains: [list] [*]Sealed instruction booklet with stickers [*]6 Helicopter Blades [*]1 Sealed M-Motor [*]1 Battery Box [*]2 Soft Axles [*]10 Unnumbered Bags [/list] [b]SEALED INSTRUCTIONS WITH STICKERS[/b] The stickers are sealed with the instruction booklet, like we are getting used to with bigger sets. I've said it before, but TLG deserves a big thumbs-up for this! [url=""][img][/img][/url] The sticker sheet is still in perfect shape! [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]HELICOPTER BLADES[/b] This set contains six of the [url=""]Large Technic Rotor Blades[/url], first released in the [url=""]9396 - Helicopter[/url] in 2012. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]PF BATTERY BOX AND M-MOTOR[/b] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]SOFT AXLES[/b] Two Soft Axles, or Flex Axles, are delivered unbagged. 19L? Who knows! More on these later :wink: [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]BAGS[/b] Ten bags containing the rest of the, mostly white, parts. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url]


This chapter describes new and interesting parts. Not sure if it's a trend, but like the [url=""]24 Hours Race Car[/url] this set also has an abundance of panels. I've counted 51 of 'em (not counting the engine covers). It does have two new panels, introduced in most of the 1H 2016 sets. As from today this set officially contains the most Technic Panels. One more than the [url=""]42025 - Cargo Plane[/url]. [list] [*][url=""]42052[/url] - 51 panels [*][url=""]42025[/url] - 50 panels [*][url=""]42039[/url] - 47 panels [/list] [b]BLUE 5x3 BENT PANELS[/b] These new Bent Panels seem to be very suited to make fenders/wheel arches and seats. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]AXLE AND PIN HOLE[/b] The axle counterpart of the [url=""]Pin and Pin Hole[/url]. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]YELLOW 6L AXLE[/b] From what I can tell at the moment, the yellow [url=""]6L Axle[/url] is unique to this set. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]RED 5L AXLE[/b] Like the yellow 6L axle, the red [url=""]5L Axle[/url] seems to be unique to this set. This will obviously change over the course of time, but for now it's the only set containing them. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]19L SOFT AXLES[/b] Finally, the black [url=""]19L Soft Axles[/url]! A lot of people will be glad to see these being used again. Only released in the [url=""]8450 - The Mission[/url] in 1999, this part has become very rare. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]DRUM TIPPER[/b] Of course these are no [url=""]Cement Mixer Drum Tippers[/url] ([url=""]60018 - Cement Mixer[/url], [url=""]7990 - Cement Mixer[/url]). These are Helicopter Engine Covers, and quite good looking ones. They seem to be more versatile then you'd imagine, since they already appeared in [url=""]4 other sets[/url]. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]GREEN 3x11 PANEL[/b] Two green [url=""]3x11 Panels[/url], not to be confused with bright green, used in the [url=""]42039[/url]. This is the same green as the [url=""]42008 - Service Truck[/url] from 2014. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]ORANGE PANELS[/b] A collection of 13 orange panels. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]WHITE PANELS[/b] A collection of 34 white panels. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]WHITE 5x11 TAPERED PANEL PLATE[/b] Introduced last year in the [url=""]Fire Plane[/url], this is a relatively new [url=""]panel[/url]. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]2x4 PERPENDICULAR BENT PIN CONNECTOR[/b] This [url=""]2x4 Perpendicular Bent Pin Connector[/url] was introduced in 2013 and it's one of those parts flying under the radar. You won't be needing this every day, but who knows when it might come in handy. [url=""][img][/img][/url]


The set consists of 1042, shown below. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url]


Upon opening the booklet with building instructions, I noticed the color of the pages has slightly changed. The pages are lighter blue than we're used to. Probably to increase the contrast and make the difference between the darker colors better visible. This new color is used in every booklet of the new sets. [url=""][img][/img][/url] The build setup is a bit different than we're used to. Usually you start by building one side, followed by adding things inside and finished by closing up the model. This time you start by building the fuselage, after which you continue with the gear box and rotors. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]ROTORS[/b] The image below shows the mechanism for the contra-rotating rotors. Actually I made a mistake here. I switched the two turntables. Luckily it didn't take me long to find out. At the top you can see an [url=""]Axle Connector with Axle Hole[/url] which is connected to an axle going through the turntables. This axle is only connected to one of the turntables (obviously). [url=""][img][/img][/url] The first set of rotors is connected to one of the turntables, while the other is connected to the axle going through the turntable. This is demonstrated in the video below. [media][/media] [b]GEARBOX[/b] Here you can see the setup of the gearbox. A basic setup with a single layer of gears (more or less). You can see the [url=""]3L Driving Ring[/url] on both sides of the model, used to switch between the different functions. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]CARGO BAY DOORS[/b] I found the mechanism to open the bottom cargo bay doors to be very intriguing. Here you can see three stages of moving the [url=""]H-Frame[/url] down. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] The video below demonstrates the gearbox and the mechanism for the cargo bay doors. [media][/media] [url=""][img][/img][/url] This video shows the gearbox mounted on the fuselage, and the contra-rotating rotors. [media][/media] [b]CARGO CONTAINER[/b] The cargo container wraps up the build. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]FINISHED MODEL[/b] Leaving the other building steps for you to discover, we skip right to the finished model. There's always a lot of debate about panels and closing a Technic model with them. I personally love a finished look with panels. Looking at the image below, I can only compliment the designer with his accomplishment. The helicopter looks fantastic! The design itself is fantastic and the color scheme is really spot on. This helicopter looks even better than the [url=""]9396 - Helicopter[/url], which I will compare later in this review. The Drum Tipper parts used as engine covers is very well done. You would almost think they are designed to be used in this helicopter. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]SIDE REAR VIEW[/b] In this picture you can clearly see the rear cargo bay door/ramp and the landing gear. The tail rudders are operated manually, which is slightly disappointing. The solution in the [url=""]42025 - Cargo Plane[/url] was much better. The landing gear is pretty clever though. Very simple, but it works like a charm, using nothing more than gravity. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]SIDE VIEW[/b] The side view shows how well the helicopter has been designed. The panels align very well and the model is almost entirely closed. This is a matter of personal preference, but I absolutely love it. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]BOTTOM VIEW[/b] Yup, there it is...the battery box. You can also see the mechanism to operate the tail wing. I find this to be a weak spot of the model. The lever is positioned very close to the wing itself, which feels a bit useless. It would have been great to operate the wing with the orange [url=""]Bionicle Tooth[/url] located near the tail gate. You can clearly see which panels are used for cargo bay doors. Two 3x11 panels are used as bottom cargo bay doors, and a 5x11 is used as the back cargo bay door (ramp). Both are operated by the Power Functions motor (see features and functions). [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]FRONT VIEW[/b] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]REAR VIEW[/b] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]ADDITIONAL IMAGES[/b] Here are two additional images from different angles. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] [b]PARTS LEFT[/b] It's interesting too see TLG provided an extra 19L Soft Axle. It appears to be used in the B-model, but it somehow feels like an added bonus, since this part is wanted by a lot of builders. The [url="{"color":11}"]6L Rigid Hose[/url], which is also used in the B-model, is extra too. Since the instruction booklet tells us we are only supposed to get a single 19L Soft Axle, I am not sure whether it's used in the B-model (it looks that way though). [url=""][img][/img][/url]


This set has the following features: [list] [*]Contra-rotating rotors (Power Functions) [*]Opening bottom cargo bay doors (Power Functions) [*]Opening rear cargo bay door/ramp (Power Functions) [*]Operating the winch [*]Operating tail wing (Manual) [*]Operating tail rudders (Manual) [*]Landing gear [*]Castering nose wheel [/list] The following video demonstrated all of the functions/features. I have added an IR receiver and I am using a PF remote to operate the powered functions. [media][/media] As you can see all the functions work very smooth. The powered functions work pretty fast, so there's no waiting for ages before the cargo doors open up. The winch is the slowest of them all, but that makes sense. As you could read in the review, I don't really like the manual tail wind and rudder functions. I know a designer needs to make concessions, but wasn't it possible to operate the tail wing with the orange bionicle tooth. The castering nose wheel does work properly, and so does the landing gear. Both very simple, but they do their job.



Like I said at the beginning of my review, I am fan of flying machines. And to be honest, I am an even bigger fan of helicopters than planes or jets. This might influence my judgement. I am also a big fan of white, orange and grey, so that's another plus. And I happen to like models finished with panels. Do you see where this is going?! I absolutely love this model. The [url=""]9396 - Helicopter[/url] was one of my favorite models, but I like this one even better. The closed design is something I like a lot, as long as the model is packing some functions too. Panels alone don't cut it. Well, this set has some cool features under those panels. The mechanism for the contra-rotating rotors is pretty nifty. So are the bottom cargo bay doors. The things I like the least is are the tail wing and tail rudders. The tail wing is operated manually, but it's a simple lever positioned very closely to the actual wing. And the rudders are operated by simply moving the rudders themselves. As with the Mercedes I am not a big fan of operating a model by using the switch on the battery box. It confuses me, and you can't easily reach it. I understand TLG can't throw in a remote and IR receiver each time they supply a PF motor, but it's probably one of the modifications most AFOLs will immediately apply. That being said, I absolutely recommend getting this fantastic model!


Okay, so how do I grade this set? [b][color=#800000][size=5]9[/size][/color][/b] [b]DESIGN[/b] [img][/img] [size=3]Absolutely magnificent.[/size] [b][color=#800000][size=5]8[/size][/color][/b] [b]BUILDING EXPERIENCE[/b] [img][/img] [size=3]Great build with some clever techniques.[/size] [b][color=#800000][size=5]8[/size][/color][/b] [b]FEATURES[/b] [img][/img] [size=3]Great functions, but rudder and tail controls need improvement.[/size] [b][color=#800000][size=5]8[/size][/color][/b] [b]PLAYABILITY[/b] [img][/img] [size=3]Lots of things to operate, but would work better with a remote control.[/size] [b][color=#800000][size=5]9[/size][/color][/b] [b]PARTS[/b] [img][/img] [size=3]Contains lots of new parts and loads of white panels.[/size] [b][color=#800000][size=5]9[/size][/color][/b] [b]VALUE FOR MONEY[/b] [img][/img] [size=3]Worth every penny. Will buy another one.[/size] [b][color=#800000][size=6]8,5[/size][/color][/b] [b][color=#000000][size=4]ABSOLUTE EYECATCHER[/size][/color][/b]


[b]BONUS COMPARISON[/b] I will end this review with a comparison between the "new" and "old" helicopter. As you can see my 9396 has a yellow and black color scheme, instead of the original yellow and red, but it will give you a clear picture on how these two compare. [url=""][img][/img][/url] [url=""][img][/img][/url] More pictures can be found on my [url=""]Flickr page[/url]. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed it.

Discussion about this set can be found here.