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Lego Maniacs' Guide: Reviews: Boats : Fire Rescue Boat

[Purchase Lego at Amazon.com] 4031 - Fire Rescue Boat

Rating: 5 Stars
Pros: Very cool design, and I'm not even a regular town collector.
Cons: None but the missing 1x2 brick (whine, whine!)
Contents: 349 pieces including 4 mini-figs
Price: Discontinued
Reviewed: 11-Feb-1997
Reviewed by: Joseph Gonzalez

4031 Early morning dreams are abruptly ended for the men of station 96 as alarms sound and the 4031 craft engines are started. A warehouse fire on wharf 101 has broken out with a large explosion and some definite injuries reported. Within forty seconds the men are into their gear and aboard the 4031, speeding toward the wharf where smoke can already be seen even in the early morning light.
The scout copter surges off its landing pad and speeds ahead of the boat with hoses powered and ready to radio back the status of the enormous fire. YOU are in control of the entire situation with the 4031 Fire Rescue Boat!

This is my very first floating boat and it was love at first sight. As a matter of fact, in my opinion, Lego has yet to come up with another design that matches it!
The model is a 51-stud-long fireboat equipped with four water cannons, a landing pad for a helicopter, below deck radio room and a fairly spacious command room. The high point of the model is the elevating water cannon at midship whose design I am destined to use for a hidden laser on a future spaceship project. The model also includes a one man helicopter that also carries a couple of hoses and spouts...although I wonder where the water supply comes from in such a small craft.
The set includes four mini-figs (heli-pilot, ship's captain, and two firefighters to man the cannons) and the ever safety-conscious Lego company equips our shipmates with life preservers. There are no particularly new parts except the large floating hull (which looks very much like it could be the same one used for the 4030-Cargo Carrier with a color change). This hull is nice and deep which will make for some great alternate models like another freighter or smuggling ship. Thank goodness the company included stickers for the hull rather than making it pre-printed...which would have limited possibilities. Also, the set has a novel use for yellow drinking goblets in using them as nozzles for the water cannons.
There are no obvious flaws with the model but I came up short by one 1x2 red brick for complete assembly of the model. This is the first time I have ever encountered this with a Lego set (and that's almost fifteen years of collecting talking). The missing brick wasn't a problem because I had a few of these bricks on hand to fill the need.
A big, big thanks goes out to Calum Tsang for helping me to get this set which I dare say was one of my "holy grails". The acquisition and assembly of this set provided no disappointments, it's a five-star set all the way!

69 readers have rated this set as 4.365 out of 5 stars.
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