* Prices may differ from that shown
If you have a kid and you're after getting them some train tracks to play with, whether they've shown an interest or whether you're after giving them something from your own ideas, then Brio is basically the cream of the crop when it comes to wooden train sets, as far as I'm concerned. The quality of design and wood preparation is matched only by the accuracy of the parts and how they match up to the other different Brio products.
This particular Brio product is a gently sloping piece of track, very straight and ideal for the part of a track that goes up to go over a bridge or over another piece of track. A few years ago, my father in law found a large batch of Brio at a car boot sale for not much money, and there were quite a few of these pieces in with the rest of straight pieces, corners, trains etc. The slopes on this are well designed, with care taken to ensure that when the train goes along the track it's seamless, allowing for the angle of the base of the train to ensure nothing catches.
Brio's standards are very high, and the quality of design is such that their prices are often very high. Believe it or not, a pack of two of these pieces will cost around the £6 mark, a price I find unjustifiable for me to purchase any extra bits and bobs. This is the only downfall really, as the design when you look at it is excellent. Each piece has a perfectly grooved dip on either side for the trains to go along, and the connector element at each end is contoured in a way that when it joins with the next piece, there may be some movement to allow for slight adjustments in track design but the grooves are solid together. There are cheaper versions that don't perform quite so well but this is ideal in every way apart from where it hits you in your pocket.
Brio's goal is to create stimulating childplay through the quality and variety of their products. There certainly are plenty of construction opportunity for the budding rail engineer within the Brio range, and I'd say the quality of the wood is also strangely worth talking to with your child. My eldest has played with inferior quality tracks and has commented on the difference, saying how he feels reassured playing with this set as he knows it all works properly. For something with no electrical components, you can see how the wood is treated to create the best possible finish. You won't get splinters through normal use, and even if you get them wet it doesn't warp them at all like other sets can be.
The danger with a curved piece such as this is that it is weakened where it bends, but the curved pieces we have have endured all manner of being stumbled onto and force being exerted where it perhaps shouldn't be. It has maintained its solid form and not shown any cracks or distortions. The connectors are the same.
All in all then, price aside this is excellent. You'll find that you need to get the proper versions of train sets such as Thomas the Tank Engine, as some of the lesser versions won't necessarily fit on the track, but then the quality of these trains matches that of this set. Brio do also produce their own trains and accessories, which you know will be just as reliable. Recommended.
"Design your own bridge! Contains 2 x N track each is 214mm / 8.5"" long."