Elven Heights

‘Hmmm…’ murmured this TLCB writer upon entering the crumbling ruin that is TLCB Towers today. The cause of his utterance was looking him in, well, not quite the face, but certainly the testicles. A grinning Elf was sat on a shelf in the lobby, and not in a whimsical Christmassy way.

A little further on another was eating an unnecessary candle placed upon a dresser by TLCB’s intern “because it smells nice!”, whilst a third Elf was hanging from the door handle to the Executive Washroom and Sauna

That final Elf was the most unnerving – based upon a miserable previous experience – and thus was swiftly batted off the handle by a mop head before it caused any real panic amongst the members of TLCB Staff with PTSD.

The cause of the Elves in high places became apparent when this writer entered the office, wherein a small cohort of Elves were hanging from a fairly sizeable Technic crane, trying to gain entry the stationary cupboard with a bent paper clip.

Mr. Airhorn promptly ceased the shenanigans, scattering the would-be burglars, and we can now take a peek at the creation responsible without fear of all TLCB’s glue sticks being eaten and very sticky messes being left throughout the Elves’ cage room tomorrow morning.

Said creation is this one; previous bloggee Ivan_M (aka Ivan MOC)‘s marvellous Power Functions remote controlled crane truck.

A beautifully neat build, Ivan’s truck features motorised drive and steering, linear actuator boom elevation, with working boom extension, rotation and winch operation, plus functioning outriggers, and an in-cab piston-engine too.

The Power Functions battery box and IR receiver look remarkably at home exposed under the stowed crane, with Ivan’s model easily appearing as though it could be an official LEGO Technic set.

There’s more of Ivan’s excellent Technic crane truck to see at his Flickr album via the link in the text above, which includes images demonstrating its surprisingly large extension*. Take a look via the link to Flickr whilst we double check the office for any more Elves in high places…

*That’s what she said

No Time to Die (Again)

Thanks to a deadly virus circulating the globe, several major film releases have been postponed by well over a year, with studios desperately trying to maintain interest in the meantime. There have been so many new ‘No Time to Die’ trailers we’ve pretty much seen the whole movie.

Cue this impressive DAF NTT 2800 truck by Flickr’s Arian Janssens, which admittedly we published here last year, but look! – A new trailer! See, a seamless link to that new 007 movie and not a desperate attempt to gain bandwagon views at all.

There’s more to see of Arian’s DAF, and that new trailer (a three-axle slurry tanker), via the link.

Alpine Pass

History is littered with vehicle manufacturers who sold about five cars a year, but yet somehow thought they could afford a top-tier racing team. Caterham, Marussia, Spyker, TVR and others have all tried – and without exception failed – to turn a tiny (and sometimes non-existent) sports car business into a successful racing team.

Re-born Alpine are the latest company to have a go. However whilst they also only sell about five cars a year, they’re owned by Renault, whose pockets and racing experience are rather deeper than Marussia’s…

Cue the Renault F1 team becoming Alpine in 2021, and – perhaps less encouragingly – this; the Alpine A480 Le Mans Hypercar entrant. Which wasn’t a Hypercar at all, rather a ‘grandfathered’ LMP1 Rebellion/Oreca 07 with a new paint-job.

Still, it brought a much-needed competitor to the top tier of endurance racing, which is currently rather short of entries, and gave the French fans something to support.

This neat brick-built version of the ‘Alpine’ A480 comes from Lasse Deleuran (aka gtahelper), who’s added it to his extensive line-up of Le Mans cars from the last few years.

There’s more of the model to see on Brickshelf via the link above, and we’ll be looking forward to Lasse’s Lego versions of the new Peugeot and Ferrari Le Mans Hypercars which are due to join the field soon. We just hope they do a bit more than give an old Rebellion/Oreca 07 a new paint job…

Flame Grille

A flame paint-job is worth at least 150bhp, according to TLCB maths. That puts it right up there with a supercharger, side pipes and nitrous in TLCB’s list of go-faster things.

Laszlo Torma’s Speed Champions ‘57 Chevy is therefore very powerful indeed, being equipped with at least two of the above.

A brilliant brick-built grille and a pair of appropriately cool looking mini-figures complete the build, and there’s more to see of Laszlo’s flaming Chevy – including a link to building instructions – on Flickr via the link above.

Fantastic Ford

The Lego Car Blog Elves are having a great day today. Previous bloggee Jakub Marcisz is back with this lovely Classic Ford F100 pick-up, which not only looks fantastic, there’s a complete Power Functions remote control drivetrain underneath too.

The Elves therefore, are riding around in the back. A few have inevitably been run over, but for the most part it’s good clean fun.

Jakub’s model conceals its remote controlness well, with the only clue visible being if the brown box is removed from the bed, and the model also features opening doors (revealing a beautifully constructed interior), dropping tailgate, opening hood, LED lights, working suspension, and a high/low gearbox.

It’s a top quality build that’s worth a closer look, and you can do just that via Jakub’s photostream at the link above, where more imagery and a link to a YouTube video can also be found.

Venom (Unverified)

Several cars currently claim to be the fastest ever produced. The race for the highest top speed has brought about some incredible machines, but it’s also reached a fairly pointless level, as a whole pit crew, the hiring of a desert, plus bespoke tyres, fuel, and fluids are all required. If TLCB were in charge of the record, a car’s run would only stand if it was filled up on the M32, just outside Bristol, and driven by an elderly lady plucked at random from a nearby bowls club.

Hennessey somewhat understandably chose not to take this approach, going the whole pit-crew-desert-bespoke route when they beat the Bugatti Veyron’s record last decade, reaching an official top speed of 270mph in what was basically a Lotus Exige with an LS in it.

Bugatti have since upped their game but – not counting SSC’s recent slightly embarrassing and completely unverified claim – no production car has yet hit a verified 300mph.

Hennessey aim to do so imminently though, with this; the 1,800bhp Venom F5.

Built in England (as most American supercar icons seem to be), and powered by a hugely reworked Chevrolet LS (as most American supercar icons seem to be), just twenty-four Venom F5s are due to be produced, each costing $2.1m, and each capable (if Hennessey’s maths are proved correct) of a record-breaking 301mph top speed.

We’ll find out if the claims are true when the Venom F5 records a verified run, so until then we’re happy to focus on a rather smaller version, as built in 1:8 scale by previous bloggee Jeroen Ottens.

With all-wheel-suspension, a V8 engine, working scissor doors, functioning steering, and an 8-speed sequential gearbox, Jeroen’s Technic Venom F5 is certainly every bit as impressive as an on-paper top speed of 301mph.

You can also build Jeroen’s model for yourself, as it’s constructed mostly from the various green pieces (and variously green pieces) from the 42115 Lamborghini Sian FKP 37 set, with instructions available at Jeroen’s website.

There’s more to see – including the complete gallery and full build details – at both Flickr and Eurobricks – Click the links above, grab your pit crew and some bespoke tyres, and probably/possibly/maybe hit 301mph!

The Other Ferrari

This is not a Ferrari.

The only legitimate son of Enzo, Alfredo “Dino” Ferrari was an engineer at his father’s company until he died in 1956, aged just 24, from muscular dystrophy.

Until his death, Dino had been working on a new 1.5 litre DOHC V6 engine with Vittorio Jano, who had joined Ferrari from Lancia.

Encouraged by Dino, Jano developed the new V6 engine, and upon Dino’s death Enzo Ferrari decided to create a new marque named after his son to take the engine racing.

The ’Dino’ F2 team raced the following year, with the engine subsequently developed for road cars which bore the ‘Dino’ name, including the Dino 246 by Flickr’s Jonathan Elliott pictured here, plus the Lancia Stratos and Fiat Dino Coupe and Spider.

Sadly Dino never saw the engine he pushed for race, and Jano never saw his engine fitted to a Ferrari. He lost his own son as Enzo had, and a year later in 1965 he took his own life.

Enzo finally brought Dino and Jano’s engine in-house for use in Ferrari-branded road cars in 1976, discontinuing the ‘Dino’ marque.

After twenty years, Enzo had allowed his son’s engine home.

Fifty Shades of Bley

Ok, one shade (this isn’t the 42115 Lamborghini Sian set), but certainly fifty types of bley.

Blueish-grey (hence ‘bley’) replaced LEGO’s ‘light grey’ colour in around 2005 for reasons we don’t understand, and The Brick Artisan has embraced the hue wholly with his ‘Classic Space Compact Transport Rover’, which looks a bit like a spacey airport luggage tractor.

Said rover not only contains a whole lot of bley, it features a delightfully elaborate and possibly radioactive load too, as this Classic Spaceman apparently heads to the Classic Space recycling centre. Our Earth-based equivalent of this trip is only to transport TLCB’s broken electrical devices and old pieces of wood (although we do also use a Rover), so this trip looks far more exciting!

There’s more to see of The Brick Artisan’s ‘Classic Space Compact Transport Rover’ on Flickr, where – if you have sufficient bley – you can recreate it for yourself as building instructions are available. Click the link above to make the jump!

Rope & Bucket

Today’s post sounds like an English pub, but it is in fact a fully operational recreation of the Caterpillar 7295 rope excavator, as built by Ivan_M in a spectacular 1:40 scale.

Inside Ivan’s model are six Power Functions motors that drive the tracks, superstructure rotation, and the winches that lift, extend, and open the bucket.

It’s a complicated movement but one that Ivan has managed to replicate beautifully, with his model demonstrating some of the most impressive action on video you’ll see today. Ok, we can’t guarantee that – the internet’s a big place – but it’s nevertheless properly good.

There’s more to see of Ivan’s stunning Caterpillar 7295 rope excavator on Flickr and at the Eurobricks forum, plus you can watch that impressive action in the ace video below!

YouTube Video

Dananananana Bateman!

This is a Bateman Assault Bridge Carrier, an experimental tank-bridge-laying-combo based on the excellently-named ‘Medium Dragon’ Mk.1 artillery tractor that was trialled by the British Royal Engineers in 1926.

It’s one of the more obscure vehicles to appear here then, and it’s been recreated brilliantly by Tarix819 of Eurobricks in a colossal 1:8 scale.

Weighing almost 10kgs, Tarix’s creation features two coil-sprung tracks, each with its own mechanical tensioner and independently powered by an SBrick and three XL motors.

A working V8 engine lives within the armour, and a functioning searchlight is able to light up the obstacle ahead in need of crossing.

And cross an obstacle the Bateman can, as Tarix’s model can deploy the huge bridge mounted on the top of machine. The real Assault Bridge Carrier relied on hand-powered winches (which are also recreated here), but Tarix’s build utilises a Power Functions Medium Motor to complete the model’s suite of remote control functionality.

It’s a monumentally impressive piece of Lego engineering and you can see how Tarix has done it at the Eurobricks discussion form here, and via the brilliant video below.

YouTube Video

Kosmic Kitty

Is it us or is Hello Kitty everywhere? Well now the Japanese humanoid feline is in space too, thanks to Alec Hole. Your thoughts on this development will probably depend upon younger family members’ obsession with the anthropomorphised cat, but – if you can cope – there’s more of Alec’s ‘Hello Kitty Speeder’ to see on Flickr via the link above.

We Are United

This incredible creation is a Boeing 777-(200), as flown by United Airlines, and built over the course of eleven months by Freezeur21 of Flickr.

Constructed in mini-figure scale (which sounds small but makes this massive), Freezeur’s 777 features opening doors, accurate landing gear (which somehow supports the model’s enormous weight), and some properly brilliant decals.

So good is the result you’d be hard-pressed to know this is Lego at first glance, but it is and you can check out more stunning images of Freezeur’s United Airlines Boeing 777-(200) at his photostream. Click the link above to climb on board.

Playing Golf

In the opinion of this TLCB Writer, walking (or riding) around a park in silly trousers is not a sport. Still, when Volkswagen’s naming department decided to choose sports as the theme for their new cars in the 1970s, golf was one of the games they selected, alongside ‘Derby’ and ‘Polo’.

Eight generations later and the Golf is still going strong, and previous bloggee SP_LINEUP has built no less than four of them, all recreated beautifully in small-scale brick form.

There’s more to see of each, including a tasty-looking Mk1 and a 2000s-era R32, at SP’s photostream. Grab your clubs and head to the green via the link above.

Cyber Gull

As if cyberpunk cars weren’t cool enough*, this one has gull-wing doors! Finn Roberts owns the mind behind it, and there’s more to see of this 7-wide concept (and Finn’s other cyberpunk vehicles) on Flickr.

*Is the nerdiest sentence we’ve written for a while.

5-Tons of Pain!

This is the M1083 6×6 ‘Medium Tactical Vehicle’, an Austrian-designed 5-ton military truck produced by Oshkosh for the U.S military.

Built by Flickr’s Evan M, this superb Lego recreation of the M1083 in desert camo spec not only does an excellent job of capturing the truck, and features both working steering and suspension, it also includes 5 tons of exciting exploding things in the load bed.

Talking of ‘capturing the truck’, a few of the real trucks and a great many tons of U.S exploding things are likely now in the hands of the Taliban in Afghanistan. Which makes the war to oust them seem rather pointless. Still, you can capture your own M1083 at Evan’s photostream via the link above!