Quest for Lion Knights’ castle: How close does a childhood LEGO collection with maybe half-a-dozen smallish 1980s LEGO Castle theme sets, two haphazard BrickLink orders (254 pieces total, some redundant ones), one LEGO Shop Pick a Brick order (31 pieces) and some minifigure mauling get one to the 6080 King’s Castle? As it turned out, pretty darn close.
That was the practice. But now, after my newly gained wisdom of relying more on brick inventories and less on fool’s luck (or lack thereof), I also have the math to prove it. Missing were: eight minifigure accessories (two plumes, a saddle – both I used to have as a child, but can’t find – two capes and some flags), 15 old grey bricks (half of which are inverted 1×2 roof tiles) and 1 black door.
24 missing out of a set with 674 bricks in total, after roughly 285 brickquisitions. That means my existing collection has been able to furnish more than 54% of 6080 King’s Castle, even all the minifigures (my original plan had been not to build all the minifigures), if not quite all their accessories (e.g. I BrickLinked some shields). On the other hand, it is also pretty clear why I really had no chance as a child. Missing half the pieces is the start of a really bad brick day.
As for the cost, including cost of the remaining parts? Circa 70 euros for parts and postage, including new parts for the portcullis. Had I tried to squeeze the BrickLink orders into one (as I was kindly recommended early on), I would have saved quite a bit on shipping. The prices for a complete, used 6080 King’s Castle (with shipping) start at around 100 euros on BrickLink, so at least I’m a hair under that still.
On the whole, I have spent a lot more on other parts of the AFOL hobby, ignited by the questing for Lion Knights’ castle. Luckily my goal was never to save money, but to re-use existing parts and experience a journey no single, readily bought set could offer. It has been a journey all right. In the end, I guess I got a little more than I bargained for…