“ Manufacturer: Brio „
This tip and load wagon is something we have a duplicate of in our toy box due to getting the same present one year from people who knew my son loves his wooden train set.
Brio for those unfamiliar with the brand Brio is the market leader in wooden trains and most other manufactures' whether it is Big Jigs, Tesco or similar all try to make their wooden trains compatible with it. The company has being making trains and train sets since 1958 and makes all of it bits from beech wooden that makes it very durable.
The wagon is a simple design with the base being in wood with two magnets at either end to couple the wagon to an engine or other wagons. The main part of the wagon is actually made from green plastic that is fixed into the base. The tilting section of the wagon is made from red plastic and it tilts either way meaning that the load can be off loaded whichever way my son sets the track up. The tilt section works by grooves in the green main wagon and two prongs at either end of the red basket these prongs run up and down the groove to make the basket tilt. This simple design works most of the time fine but on some occasions it does get jammed and stuck in position and needs to be wriggled gently to free the prongs up from being stuck. Even now at 4 years old my son struggles to free it up when it gets jammed and this would be my only real criticism of the wagon. The wagon also has a large black block that acts as it load. In the centre there is a metal disc meaning it can be picked up by a crane that is another train accessory we have. The underneath of this block has two holes in it meaning that it can be used in conjunction with some of Brio's other wagons that have prongs on the base for loads such as the milk wagon and be used to transfer things between the two wagon bases.
The wagon is well made and robust and neither the wagon nor the load itself have suffered any damage in the years of play and remain as bright and cheerful looking as they did. There has been no chipping of paint or cracking of plastic and it shows all the signs of a good quality toy that I expect from Brio.
My son enjoys playing with this wagon and lifting the load in and out and shunting it into the sidings on the tracks so it can be loaded or tip its load out. When used with the crane we have it can be moved around easily to lift the load out and due to the wide open nature of the wagon it is easy to lower the load back into the truck from the crane too.
Play wise as with most toy trains it is great for hand eye co-ordination as my son manipulates the train and wagon around the tracks. But it also helps him to use his fine motor skills with the crane to lift and lower it on to the wagon base and around the rest of the track where he sets up different loading bays up.
The wagon is also great for helping with his imaginative play as with the trains he can act out little stories as his train and wagons as they go around the tracks as he takes various loads to the station or the quarry and tips and loads the wagon up which is a great thing to see him do in his playing.
Overall this is a great little wagon it is well made and robust and lasts well. Bar the small issue of the tilt section getting jammed on occasions I cannot recommend it enough to accompany a wooden train set and my son would agree. At around £6 from amazon it is a great little purchase and one that will certainly last years. I am giving it 4 stars and just removing one for the occasional jamming that needs an adult to sort out.