Monday, March 7, 2011

Lego Technic 8049 Log Loader Review: Pneumatics live on!

Compared to the massive mobile cranes or shiny Ferrari supercars we've seen among the Technic models in the last years, a classic tractor with a log loader perhaps can't achieve as much stage light. But even if it isn't something Sonny Crockett would gladly be photographed in, it's a set that should not be overlooked, and here is the main reason why.

Pneumatics, of course! This is one of the rare currently available pneumatic sets, especially as the trend seems to be moving in the favour of the recently introduced mechanical linear actuators. Let's be honest: mechanical actuators unquestionably offer some advantages in comparison to pneumatics (among which the accurate actuator control is the most important), but pneumatics don't need complicated gearing and axle mechanisms behind them, while they provide some serious power nonetheless. I think pneumatics should, therefore, not get ignored (or even worse, discontinued by TLG), and this is one of the sets that keeps them a part of the Big Picture.

So what does the set consist of? A nicely shaped tractor of an unsung green colour, with the "Hand of God" roof steering control, and a detachable trailer with a biaxial pneumatically operated crane, that can "grab" the provided log and rotate 360° as well. Though, these two latter functions do not rely on the pneumatics, but on the good old gears instead. You might argue that only the steering might be a bit shallow functionality for a Technic tractor of this size, but there is in fact very little available space for anything else, at least if one intends to keep it looking like a tractor. The crane is controlled by two valve switches on the trailer side, a pneumatic pump and a turntable rotation knob at the back, and a gear on the claw mechanism.


Its mechanical solutions parhaps aren't breathtakingly revolutionising the Technic as we know it, but it is still a nice example of a tidy, sturdy and efficient Technic design with a grain of decoration.

However, "efficient" and "sturdy" doesn't necessarily mean "simple". In fact, this set isn't the easiest to build (most of the time it's actually not difficult either, but a few steps regarding the weaving of pneumatic hoses could be very tricky for beginners), and it takes about an hour and a half to build the first time. But it's  even harder to disassemble as it has lots of tightly neighbouring half-stud beams connected by the axles, a 'feature' I'd cheerfully live without.


This set relies on a few non-typical parts, but a vast majority are good standard Technic building material. 525 parts altogether, which will suffice for some cute small-to-medium scale models (as is the 'B' model log loader), but for some more serious building, it will not suffice alone.

It will provide you with six medium-sized and two large offroad wheels, an always welcome turntable and, of course, pneumatics ― consisting of one large (spring-loaded) pump, two cylinders, two T-distributors, two switchvalves and a (drum roll!) rare small pump.


Officially, the 8049 set can be expanded with Power Functions to build its onboard compressor (that's what the small pump is for, which is otherwise unused in the primary model!).

Besides, the log-loading trailer is sturdy enough to be used as a base for some larger, custom contraptions. I guess it could support the crane at least twice the size and capacity, if one had the inclination and the hardware to modify it.


+ Pneumatics! Two pumps, two cylinders!
+ Fine supply of other parts (wheels, turntable...)
+ Easily customisable
+ Nice to play, well-placed controls

- Not the easiest to build
- Even less easy to disassemble
- The crane theoretically turns 360°, but the hosing gets twisted soon


Perhaps not the Technic flagship, but nevertheless a cute little playable set that keeps the pneumatic systems in the game, and as such, a great start for people interested in them. Not breaking new grounds in terms of mechanical solutions or functionality, but a good role model of simple and clean design, for a very reasonable price.


  1. Simply to follow up on the up-date of this topic on your web site and would really want to let you know how much I loved the time you took to write this beneficial post. Within the post, you actually spoke regarding how to actually handle this issue with all convenience. It would be my personal pleasure to collect some more concepts from your web-site and come as much as offer other folks what I learned from you. Many thanks for your usual terrific effort. DAIMLER parts

  2. I do accept as true with all of the ideas you’ve offered on your post. They are very convincing and will certainly work. Nonetheless, the posts are too short for beginners. Could you please prolong them a little from next time? Thanks for the post. zf parts

  3. You sure do understand what youre talking about. Man, this website is just great! I cant wait to learn much more of what youve have got to say. Im really happy that we discovered this after i did because I was really beginning to become bored with the whole blogging scene. Youve turned me around, man! online audio

  4. There are a handful of interesting points over time in this posting but I do not know if I see every one of them center to heart. There is certainly some validity but I will take hold opinion until I investigate it further. Good article , thanks and now we want much more! Included with FeedBurner also OMC electric shift outdrive repair 

  5. There’s clearly big money to discover more regarding this particular. I assume you’ve made certain great factors in options also. truck repair

  6. et's be honest: mechanical mechanisms unquestionably supply some benefits compared to mechanics (among that the correct actuator management is that the most important), however mechanics do not would like difficult gears and shaft mechanisms behind them, whereas they supply some serious power all the same. Rental Mobil Jakarta 

  7. After reading the blogs, the feelings really get warmed up.
    www pneumatic com