I have been building models made by JMBricklayer for almost a year now. They have included a pirate ship, a dinosaur, buildings, and even plants and flowers. Every month the company releases new models in a variety of themes. The latest model I have assembled is their new Strategic Nuclear Submarine.
The Strategic Nuclear Submarine building set comes with 1498 plastic building pieces which can be assembled into a 25-inch long modern military submersible. It even comes with two light bricks that illuminate the interior and exterior of the model. The set is suggested for builders ages 14 years and up and is made by JMBricklayer. It is currently available directly from JMBricklayer as well as the JMBricklayer store on Amazon. The Strategic Nuclear Submarine normally sells for $69.99, but the company has provided a special coupon code for GeekDad and GeekMom readers. Use code KNGTER15 on Amazon for one month for 15% off the non-discounted price of the Strategic Nuclear Submarine for one month. You can also use code VIPGEEK15 to save 15% on all non-discounted items at the JMBricklayer site until the end of 2023.
JMBricklayers does a great job of organizing the pieces of the set into many smaller numbered bags. The full-color instruction manual is divided into similar numbered sections so you can only open the bags you need for that part of the build. The instruction manual is easy to follow. Each step lists the parts needed for that step and then shows where those new pieces go with the pieces for the step illustrated in color while the rest of the build is grayed out. This helps builders focus on where to attach the new pieces. I also like that some steps use yellow dots to show where a series of pieces connect to one another.
Strategic Nuclear Submarine is a large model. There are some long pieces that can be tough to keep together at the beginning until you build up the structure. As you assemble the sub from the keel up, you add details to the interior complete with decals. At the bow of the sub is the sonar and the torpedo room complete with rows of torpedoes. Moving aft is the control room over the crew bunks. Next comes the compartment with the ballistic missiles followed by the engine room and then the nuclear reactor which provides the power for the sub. Finally, the sub ends with the screw for propulsion. The interior of the submarine contains a lot of detail. Luckily, both side panels attach at just a few points so they are easy to remove so you can inspect the interior or leave it open for display. The set comes with two light bricks. One is placed in the engine room while the other is in front of the conning tower behind some clear bricks. The entire submarine then sits on two supports since the bottom is rounded.
I’ve had the opportunity to build several sets by JMBricklayer. Some of them I have built by myself. Others I have worked on with my children. Both my son and my son-in-law enjoyed helping me build the Strategic Nuclear Submarine. It was fun to just leave it on the table and, when one of us had a few minutes, we would do several steps. Then come back later and continue where another builder had left off. This made it a great shared activity and we all were proud of the final results. Personally, I find building these types of models relaxing and a great way to decompress after a busy day. The suggested age of 14 and up is appropriate for this set since there are lots of little pieces and details. I have always been impressed by the quality of all of the JMBricklayer sets I have built and their prices are lower than comparable products by the big name brands. This value allows builders access to sets that they might not normally be able to afford. Plus they are constantly coming out with new models in a variety of themes. JMBricklyer also has a following on social media with builders posting their creations on their Facebook Group. This group offers monthly contests and discounts to followers so be sure to check it out. Members share their builds and tips for JMBricklayer sets as well as products from other companies. I enjoy seeing what other builders are doing and have learned some great methods for tricky assemblies from their discussions.
Disclosure: GeekDad received a sample of this item for review purposes.