Instructables

Comparitive study of studded construction bricks

Having kids is a good excuse to buy yourself a bunch of neat toys. When I was a kid, I didn't have near as many Legos as my sons do, so now I get to play with them, too.

Over the years, we've bought mostly Legos because of their quality and variety and number of kits. We have a few Megablocks from Canada, my son is a big fan of Pirates of the Caribbean and MegaBlocks got the contract to make constuction kits for the franchise. A few years ago we spotted some Kids Connection bricks at Wal-Mart, they were extremely cheap and in a neat storage case, so we snatched them up. I've recently discovered another company, Best-Lock out of England.

Legos are to found everywhere. Kids Connection is a brand owned by Wal-Mart, so they're exclusive, but they look a lot like MegaBlocks, so I bet MegaBlocks makes them for Wal-Mart and several other retailers. Mega-Blocks are found everywhere. Toys'R'Us has Best-Lock on their shelves and on their amazon.com portal.

I'm sure there are a dozen different companies that copy Legos or come into their own, these are just the name brands that I've come into contact with.

I just found out that K'NEX also makes good quality bricks that are compatible with Legos, but we don't have any K'NEX bricks, just the sticks and connectors. (thanks westfw!)
 
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ProfMuggs21 days ago

When I was growing up, Tyco used to make building bricks to compete with Lego.
Their plates were half of the height of the bricks, different than the
standard 1/3 height that everyone else uses. Other than that, they were
interchangeable, but you would run into issues with height it you used
them together. At the time it drove me crazy that they didn't conform to
the standard, but now I wish that variety still existed.

thank you sir for the awesome field work! I have recently pulled min back out (I got a boy on the way currently) and was wanting to get back into the toys of my youth. then I walked through Toys R Us and was amazed at the three Isles of Legos and off brands.
legofan19954 years ago
LEGO IS THE BEST IN M 2GETE OPINIO0N CZ MEGABLOKS DNTG STICK 2GETHER AND IVE NENVER HEARD OF THE OTHRS LOL
stop playing with legos and learn to spell not trying to be mean but i cant understand your comment
It says
Lego is the best in my opinion because megablocks don't stick together and I've never heard or the others, LOL
hmm... mega blocks... KILL IT WITH FIRE!!!!
i always wondered if the sets were compatable reminds me of that family guy episode where peter wanted legos but Lois bought him mega blocks and they werent the same thing
i love that episode its so funny
That sounds like such a great episode :/ Lol : D
jaxen903 years ago
Legos are by far the best building brick on the market. Everything else is just a cheap knock off in my opnion. If i ever get a box at a garage sale or thrift store I toss any and all megablocks I find mixed in right away. They are worthless junk. Btw wittzo, ever hear of brickwars? Its pretty much 40k with legos. But more room for creativity and fun. I've never actually played but it looks like a blast!
theexpert4 years ago
id like to point out that mega blocks are much easyer to break and there people look stupied plus they will melt if buried in a pile long enough
Robot Lover4 years ago
A few years ago when i played with legos i always complained when i saw a mega block in the bucket. Probably because when you stack a mega block and a lego they don't stay, so if you tipped the stack over then the mega block would fall over.
Very good instructables 5 stars, but ive used lego to make like the guns and stuff but i found lately using lego tecnic for it because there packs with hydrolics for good and cool things to do with them atm im trying to make a semi auto hand gun with em so do a reveiw on lego technics would be good (:
Gage9875 years ago
wonderful bravo five stars
I just came across this instructable. Wanted to mention-yes there are many other brick systems out there. Historically, there were Tyco Blocks, Tandem Bricks, and Cuboville Blocks. My personal favorite were the ELGO blocks, ;) All were more or less compatable with the LEGO components. Sometimes these other systems are good for alternate colors or details. (Note the rounded edges on the KNEX bricks). I attended BrickFest in Portland 2 years ago and eveyone was talking about the one row of nonLEGO blocks in a building structure. Fun!
Thanks for the instructable!
An Villain5 years ago
dont forget knex bricks.
munchman6 years ago
Unlike most of the other instructables. This doesn't show you how to make or build anything. However, I actually found this to be wonderfully well written and informative. I enjoyed reading this (as much as a person can when reading a comparison of lego style bricks). Good Job!
maker126 years ago
this is more of a slide show or foum topic! From the "Submit an Instructable" page: What is an Instructable? An Instructable is a step-by-step guide showing how you made or did something. What makes a great Instructable? Start by sharing what you're passionate about. Well taken photos for each step will make it easier to follow. Make sure it's complete and not missing any steps. Use the spell checker. What's acceptable to post? Just about anything that's complete, well documented and you are the author of. If you haven't documented your project, share it as a slideshow or video. Please refrain from posting illegal or illicit content.
maker12 maker126 years ago
it is good anyway! ;p
westfw6 years ago
We got some "k'nex Bricks" for Christmas; they're lego-compatible but feature special holes and connectors so that lego and k'nex can be used together to build things. I'll have to compare them to lego base on some of your ideas. (while perhaps not quite an instructable, I found this both interesting and useful...)
00beever westfw6 years ago
lego to knex converter bricks sound intense!
wittzo (author)  westfw6 years ago
My son got some K'Nex a few months ago, but there weren't any bricks in it, it was all sticks and elbows and stuff. It did come with several really thick idea books. He spent days building every last one of them.
westfw wittzo6 years ago
I think the k'nex bricks are a special set.
maker12 westfw6 years ago
yes
maker126 years ago

WTF? watch how it,s made!

lilpunk13026 years ago
Personally, I'm just gonna stick to my lego's, but good instructible anyways, + from me. Although, you forgot to mention the sticking power of each one, I;ve noticed that legos stay together when attached, and I mean like REALLY stay together, MEga blocks tend to come apart quite easily. Also, what does the flash of the sprew have to do with anything?
wittzo (author)  lilpunk13026 years ago
Legos probably stick together better because of their denser plastic. Cleaner flash just makes the brick look cleaner. I paint wargaming miniatures and build a lot of plastic models, too, so I just notice flash. I'm also used to reading reviews of miniatures and they always mention the amount of flash. I'll amend my review about the sticking power. I know what you're talking about, sometimes I have to take a knife to separate some pieces, even though I have a Lego tool. I had to use a knife last night to take a plate off of some Best-Lock bricks, they're that good.
Flash is ridiculously anoying. You play 40K?
wittzo (author)  Vertigo6666 years ago
Yeah, I've mostly been collecting 40K miniatures since '89 and got spanked a lot on the battlefield. I've got the "new" 4th edition rules, but I haven't played them yet. I have more than 3000 points (3rd edition) of Dark Angels (painted) and about the same in Orks (unpainted). I still have some Marines and Orks from '89 still on the sprue!
wittzo (author)  wittzo6 years ago
I just redid my points with the new Dark Angels codex and built some stuff I had in the closet. I now have about 4990 pts of Dark Angels and I still have some characters in the blisters and more vehicles I want to build....
Fear the wrath of the Deathwing!
That's impressive. You could still use them, though, in Apocalypse battles. I've got around 2000 pts of Armoured Company.
jdege6 years ago
Nothing about Fischer Technik?
wittzo (author)  jdege6 years ago
I had never heard of them before I did this review, I was just covering the bricks I had mixed in with my Legos. If I didn't have a brick to take a pic of, I didn't review it.
ELVISWMD6 years ago
About a month ago I went through my son's Lego collection and threw out the megaBlocks. My experience has been that the non Lego brand don't fit with the Legos very well. You can stick a Megablock on top of a lego but you cannot stick a Lego on top of a megablock. SO it though you can use the building sets together, the interchangeability is frustratingly limited. So don't count on using the two together to build a bigger castle.
wittzo (author)  ELVISWMD6 years ago
What I don't like is the colors don't match when you mix MegaBlocks with Legos, except for black and a few other colors for some reason. The MegaBlocks are so light, they practically glow, so if you can't find a Lego brick to add to a piece you're working on and use a MegaBlock, it sticks out like a sore thumb. That's what got my attention when got the idea to write this. I had a tub with a thousand Legos in it and the one MegaBlock was right there. It was a pale yellow brick in the middle of some sunshine yellow Legos.
This is not really an Instructable, it just shows the types of bricks that have been made.. But still, good idea of showing this and telling about how 4 types or bricks that have been made are different.
wittzo (author)  GorillazMiko6 years ago
I knoooow, but I was digging through my Lego boxes and noticed just how different the Lego clones were from the real deal. I'm happy that Best-Lock is just like Lego, except for that dimple on one of the studs..
jkm6 years ago
@ GorrilazMiko: this instructs how to save money! V useful. Wouldn't even have thought about trying non-original "Lego". Save a few $ on staple bricks. Bigger castles.