What is it with mines? Not only has LEGO made dedicated mining themes Rock Raiders and Power Miners, and also mining City sets, but it seems that every licensed theme contains a mine or underground cavern of some sort, from 7199 Indiana Jones Temple of Doom to 9473 Lord of The Rings The Mines of Moria. We've also had 7036 Dwarves' Mine and in the original Western theme the bandits hid out in a gold mine in set 6761.
So, Silver Mine Shootout joins a rapidly growing collection of such sets, and having built it, it's clear that it shares design similarities with many of its predecessors.
Before reading this, be sure to read part one of the review first, which covers the minifigs.
Box and contents
Another cracking box cover! The box is almost square, 35 x 37 cm and, at 9 cm deep, much deeper than other comparably sized boxes.
As usual the back illustrates what parts move and suggests ways to play with the set.
Inside, there's six numbered bags, a polythene bag containing large parts, and...
...two instruction manuals, a sticker sheet with 4 stickers and a plastic 'waterfall', which you'll see later.
Here are some of the interesting parts in bag one, and the polybag: a dark tan BURP, a brown slide which is probably the same as those that appear in pink in Friends sets, dark grey old-school rails, silver ingots, dark tan double-cheese and 1 x 4 trans-clear tiles, of which there are eight in total.
Bag one contains the minifigs and various other sub-assemblies that are added to the model as you build it. Construction of the mine itself begins in earnest with bag two.
It's interesting that they've used normal 6-wide train track, but then put the old-school rails on it to make it 4-wide. I can't think of any good reason for that other than stability and ease of construction. Unless, of course, a dual gauge track is needed for different sizes of mine trains...
The mine cart is an upside-down lid of a large treasure chest. Note the 'water feature' taking shape, which is made of medium blue plates, 1 x 4 trans-clear tiles and cheese. The push-rod on the left is used to get the mine cart moving.
Bag three builds the right hand side of the base of the structure.
The barrel on the left can be rotated to...
...'blast' off the wall to reveal a silver nugget.
Bag four builds upwards...
...and adds the slide which provides a means of getting from the top floor into the mine cart.
The 'water feature' is now finished, the plastic 'waterfall' part hangs vertically and, with a slit in it, presumably minifigs can walk through it, perhaps re-enacting a scene in the movie?
Bag five continues the build upwards, and the crane, built in bag one, is added. The push-lever you can just see on the left, and in the pictures above can be pushed in to 'blast' out the small BURP above the waterfall.
I've just noticed the boulder by the crane shouldn't be where it is: it's supposed to be precariously perched in the gap in the wall on the left - see the pictures below where it's in the correct position.
Bag six contains a nice surprise: this skull and new style of horn!
The finished model
Just the office with fireplace to be added from bag six and it's done. The skull, as you can see, is mounted above the office window, some sort of trophy, perhaps? There are not many stickers in the model: one is used for the 'Keep out' sign at the front of the track, and three are used on the office roof for texture, which I haven't applied.
Turning the lever above the slide raises the hinged trap-door which hits the boulder and causes it to topple over the office roof. The desk in the office has a set of weighing scales (two frying pans handle-to-handle) on it.
As you can see, this set bears more than a passing resemblance to previous mines: it shares the same overall design as 7036 Dwarves' mine and features a raised office like the original Western mine, 6761. But it does have some unique and interesting features like the waterfall and slide. It's also chock-full of useful tan, dark tan, grey and brown bricks, plates and slopes.
It was an interesting and, actually, quite a challenging build, due to the number of small slopes added throughout the process. More often than not I'd have a few left over at the end of a bag and I'd have to go back and figure out where they were supposed to go :-)
I believe the price is going to be £70 in the UK and probably $70-80 in the USA, so once again it seems pretty good value.
The minifigs (in part 1 of the review) are excellent as is the mine itself so, unfortunately, this will be another one to add to your 'want list'. It's turning out to be an expensive year again, isn't it...
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