It took us one hour to build this set. It is listed as being a beginner skill level build that can take anywhere from one to two hours to complete, depending on your skill level. The instructions were picture-only instructions and were a little confusing as were the picture directions for how to use the catapult. Also, the knob fell off quite often, but reattaching it was easy.
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My son received this as a birthday present when he was 4 years old. He was able to build most of this himself, with me reading the instructions for him. He loves playing with this and often takes it apart to build the car and different versions. Since then, I have ordered additional sets to give as gifts to his friends who are turning 5-10. This is a great alternative to Lego. This holds together very well and does not fall apart when he or his friends are playing with it.
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The positives to a front catapult is that you only need half of everything because the degrees of motion is basically half of what a backwards catapult is. I've only seen backwards catapults with 4 pistons and only front catapults with 2 pistons. Does that mean if someone gets a backwards catapult with 2 pistons a front catapult would only need one? :eek: Probably impossible if you're following the rules on pressure. The front catapult can also actually act as an assist to get big balls out quicker so you don't have to wait for intake to spit it out or if you can't get the ball out of your intake at all. I've found this to be helpful.
In addition if someone has a 4/4/2 (four motor drive, four lift, two intake) setup then having 4 tanks on your robot for a backwards catapult is a lot of weight. The tanks aren't light so keeping your robot as lightweight as possible with only four motors on drive is essential. But then again team 1103 in Round Up had a rock solid robot that weighed nearly 20 lbs. (I believe he said this in a video somewhere, don't quote me on it) and had only 4 high speed motors on his drive. Very impressive!
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HEXBUG® believes in using the fun of robotic toys to teach kids important STEM principles through hands on learning.The VEX® Robotics Catapult™ feature two alternate builds for more robotic fun! All Catapult's™ construction pieces are compatible with educational VEX® IQ pieces to create your own custom VEX® robot and explore unlimited possibilities.