21108: Ghostbusters Ecto-1 Review

Theme: LEGO Ideas
No: 21108
Release Year: 2014
Cost: AUD$69.99
Pieces: 508
I finally got my hands on one of my must have sets – 21108: Ghostbusters Ecto-1. I’d been looking for this one in stores for ages, and while I missed the opportunity to get one from LEGO Shop Online, I finally found one in a shop in town. Admittedly it cost me a little more than normal, but it was definitely worth it. I’m a big fan of the LEGO Ideas theme, so getting this one was very exciting.

This set was the first to be released under the LEGO Ideas branding, after they made the move from LEGO CUUSOO. It was submitted by designer Brent Waller in March 2013, and got to the 10,000 by August the same year. While the original submission included the Ghostbusters HQ, the building didn’t make the cut, Brent did make the design and instructions downloadable on Rebrickable. The vehicle itself did get a few changes, but we’ll get into them later.

Out of the very nice box (as always, LEGO Ideas boxes are made to a very high standard, much more so than the standard sets’ boxes), you will find six parts bags and a nicely bound instruction manual. Inside the manual are some pages on Ghostbusters itself, and the Ecto-1. It’s also got some nice quotes every few pages – it’s a very welcome touch.

Parts & Minifigures
The set contains some very nice elements, some of which were introduced with the set, and haven’t been seen since. These include the four black whips, and a few elements in silver including a round 1×1 brick, a 1×1 cheese block, the grilled 1×2 roof tile, and the minifigure barbell weight. There are some pretty great printed parts too, including four 2×2 slide shoes with proton pack details, two 2×1 ECTO-1 number plates, and four Ghostbusters logos on a 2×2 bowed plate. Other great parts are the dark red 1×1 apollo stud, the lime green 1×1 round tile, the 2×4 33 degree double slope, and the M14 pneumatic hose. There’s a lot in this set, and a sticker sheet is not one of them. Hooray!

One element I’d like to highlight in particular is the CMF stand, the 4×3 plate with four studs in the middle. It’s not a part I would have expected, mainly because of their prominence with the collectible minifigures, but also because they are usually in black. Not only this, but it’s the first time they have ever been in a set. I don’t get why it was included though. It gets hidden away in the build, easily doing what two 2×3 plates could have done. Sometimes during a build I wonder why certain parts were chosen, and this is a doozy. It’s one of those special parts in the collection now!

The minifigures in this set are really good. There’s four of them – Ray Stantz, Egon Spangler, Peter Venkman and Winston Zeddemore. They are all unique (except for the legs), with different hairstyles, and first names printed on the back of each torso, with initials on the front. The printing is really good. Each head is double sided with a normal expression on the front, and a scared expression on the back. The torsos are not quite the same as the movies, with only the initials on the front, but a full name just wouldn’t have fit. The other little difference is the lack of the logo printed arm patch. Never fear though, for NACM Customs have these in stock, just for all you perfectionists!

On to the proton packs – they are brick built, and a pretty snazzy, but I have a problem with the whip element. It’s obviously not meant to be bent in strange positions, so when you take it off, it is completely warped. I will most likely swap this out down the track to something that is meant to be more flexible. It’s just a shame that you get so many, for them to be bent out of shape. There’s also a couple of walkie talkies and the ghost trap.

Spares

​The spares in this set are pretty great! Lots of spare goodies to play with, including more slide shoes, t-bars, claws, neck mounts and more. Not bad!

Build
The build starts with the minifigures and their stand. As I already mentioned, the minifigures are great, and it’s fantastic to see that they also get a nice stand to be displayed on. It’s important as without the stand, the weight of the proton packs would topple the minifigures over.

​The Ecto-1 itself is fantastic. It’s much bigger than I originally thought. There’s loads of details, especially on the roof, and a pretty nice but simple interior. The hood is particularly well made, with the front grill looking fantastic. Everything about this car makes me smile. It’s incredibly faithful to the original, with loads of detail, especially on the roof. The fins on the rear are really well designed, and the fact that the roof can come off to show off the very well designed side windows and interior is great. The way the designers have used bars and clips to add the side windows was pure genius, and had us thinking all the way to adding them – how will they add the windows? It’s a great way to do it.
​Before I go on too much, I just want to highlight the differences between Brent Waller’s original submission, and the final product:
​There’s a lot more chrome in the original one, and the car is longer and taller. I like the chrome and side walls of the original one, as well as the bonnet, but the shape of the released one is better.

This wasn’t a repetitive build at all, with my wife and I thoroughly enjoying every step. I also really like the use of the minifigure barbell weights as hub caps. They work really well, and is an interesting element to use – not something I’d have done. There’s also plenty of SNOT parts, especially to make the sides of the vehicle.

The roof detailing is fantastic, with the ladder and hose spilling over the side. It’s been a long time for me with using pneumatic hoses, but pushing the hoses on to the t-bars was pretty tough. If kids are building this one, parental help will most likely be needed. One tiny detail that is a little out – the 1×1 tiles and the green on the roof are slightly mismatched. It’s only noticable when you’re up close though. It’s just a shame that this has happened.

​I was pleasantly surprised at how big the vehicle was. I thought it was going to be much smaller. Also, with the slide shoes on the bottom, it allows for a much smoother run on thicker carpet. The wheel clearance is enough, but the plates may catch on carpet, so the shoes are a very clever option. There’s not quite enough space to have all four minifigures and gear inside, but it’s still a good amount of interior space.
​To wrap up, this is a fantastic set – one of my favourites so far. It gets 9.5 out of 10 neutrino wands. I’d change the use of the whips, and that would be it! It’s got some great playability, looks brilliant on a shelf, and the minifigures are second to none – honestly the best ones I have seen in a set to date. If you do see it in stores (it’s there, I saw some recently), it’s one to purchase.
So, have you got the set? What are your thoughts? Do my thoughts match up with yours? Is there something I have totally missed? Let me know in the comments! Next on the review list is 75908: 458 Italia GT2 from the Speed Champions theme.

6 thoughts on “21108: Ghostbusters Ecto-1 Review

  1. Hayo Reply

    Yes, I agree with you. It’s a great set and a must-have for every Ghostbusters fan. It was the first Ideas set that I built and I’m very happy with it. 🙂

    • John @ BricktasticBlog Reply

      All I need now is the new Ecto and the Firehouse Headquarters! I need to start saving!

  2. Hayo Reply

    Yes, I agree with you. It’s a great set and a must-have for every Ghostbusters fan. It was the first Ideas set that I built and I’m very happy with it. 🙂

    • John @ BricktasticBlog Reply

      All I need now is the new Ecto and the Firehouse Headquarters! I need to start saving!

  3. Hayo Reply

    Yes, I agree with you. It’s a great set and a must-have for every Ghostbusters fan. It was the first Ideas set that I built and I’m very happy with it. 🙂

    • John @ BricktasticBlog Reply

      All I need now is the new Ecto and the Firehouse Headquarters! I need to start saving!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *