Expedition Zetros

Lego Technic Mercedes-Benz Zetros

This is the Mercedes-Benz Zetros, the brand’s ultra-heavy duty off-road truck. Normally found in use by the military, utilities companies, or carrying weighty things to the middle-of-nowhere, it’s a truck that has a sort-of-adventurous life preforming fairly mundane jobs. Not this one though.

Built by Samolot of Eurobricks this Zetros pays homage to a one-off expedition adventure vehicle created a few years ago which looks like something from The Wild Thornberrys and is possibly the coolest way ever to cross a continent.

YouTube Video

Based on the chassis found within the official LEGO Technic 8110 Mercedes-Benz Unimog set, Samolot’s Zetros forgoes the now-commonplace remote control drive and steering for a host of mechanical and powered functions.

A single Medium Motor and gearbox drive three powered features; the winch, lowering rear tail-lift platform, and the side ladder, plus there’s a piston engine up front, working all-wheel-drive and all-wheel-suspension (as per the Unimog set) and a very nice-looking cab interior.

Lego Technic Mercedes-Benz Zetros Expedition

There’s more to see of Samalot’s superb Zetros Expedition at the Eurobricks discussion forum – click here to join the adventure!

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Trusty Rusty

Lego Lightship

The Royal Yacht Skytanic is steaming through the skies en-route to Belleville. Soon she will reach the Northern Floating Icefield and the welcome sight of ‘Trusty Rusty’, the twenty-year old floating lightship and its accompanying beacons, stationed to guide air travellers through the perilous sykcicles.

The four-man crew of Trusty Rusty spend over a year on board at a time, facing huge winds and temperatures that drop below -40° in order to keep the sky traffic traversing the route safe.

Flickr’s Markus Ronge has photographed the old lightship beautifully and you can see more of his stunning imagery via Flickr, plus you can remind yourself of the Skytanic’s grand departure from the Maersk Pier and the other boats from the ‘Full Steam’ universe previously featured by clicking here.

Lego Lightship

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Starman

Lego Tesla Roadster in Space

There’s a starman waiting in the sky
He’d like to come and meet us
But he thinks he’d blow our minds

We’ve flirted with the annual Lego bandwagon that is SHIPtember before, but this year we’ve found an entry we can really get behind.

This is a Tesla Roadster. Specifically it’s the actual Tesla Roadster owned by Paypal founder, Tony Stark inspiration, and pot enthusiast Elon Musk.

Earlier this year the Muskinator decided to launch his company’s first car, the Roadster, into space using his other company, SpaceX’s, Falcon Heavy Rocket. The little Elise-based electric sports car reached speeds of over 120,000km/h and is currently orbiting with an aphelion of 248,890,000km piloted by a mannequin named ‘Starman’.

Lego Tesla Roadster in Space

Thanks to the vacuum of space, Starman’s Roadster will continue to orbit indefinitely too, ranking up considerably more miles than the 244 the car was capable of on one charge back on earth.

This huge 100-stud long homage to Elon’s ingenuous marketing project comes from TLCB newcomer Adrian Drake aka Brickfrenzy, who has built not only the ’08 Roadster but also Starman at the wheel too.

There much more to see of Adrian’s space-bound Tesla at his photostream via the link above, and you can watch the real Tesla Roadster live in orbit thanks to the wonders of YouTube by clicking here!

Lego Tesla Roadster in Space

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The Skytanic

Lego Skytanic Steampunk Ship

She’s finally ready! Departing Maersk Pier on her maiden voyage to Belleville, the Royal Yacht ‘Skytanic’ is the largest, fastest, and most luxurious skyliner ever built. Five stories of cabins, restaurants and bars, the world’s first on-board heated pool, and – of course – the Royal Pavilion, there is surely no finer way than the Skytanic to sail the skies.

Lego Skytanic Steampunk Ship

Masterminded by Flickr’s Markus Ronge, the Skytanic is deemed to be indestructible. The favoured ship of the Royal family, super-rich industrialists, and the highest of society, she’s sure to have a long and illustrious career navigating the clouds between Ninjago and Belleville. Take a look at all of the glorious photographs from the Skytanic’s maiden launch at Markus’s photostream, whilst we await her successful arrival in Belleville in a few weeks time.

Lego Skytanic Steampunk Ship

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Stuka

Lego Junkers Ju-87 "Stuka"

It’s been a bit of a Military Monday here at The Lego Car Blog, with three war-themed creations none of which are cars. Oh well, here’s the third, a Junkers Ju-87 ‘Stuka’ fighter, and it’s marvellous. Built by aircraft-building legend Dornbi of Flickr, it’s a superbly accurate recreation of one of Nazi Germany’s earliest fighters of the Second World War, made all the more impressive by some cunning brick-built camouflage. There’s much more to see of the ‘Stuka’ at Dornbi’s photostream – click the link above for all the pictures – and to counteract today’s glorification of war, here’s a super secret link.

Lego Junkers Ju-87 "Stuka"

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From Norfolk to Chile

Lego Type 23 Frigate

This is a Type 23 frigate, one of sixteen new generation lean-crewed warships commissioned by the Royal Navy between 1989 and 2002 for anti-submarine warfare. This top quality model of the Type 23 comes from Flickr’s Luis Pena, who has recreated the very first Type 23 to be built. The HMS Norfolk served with the Royal Navy for 25 years before becoming one of three Type 23 frigates sold to Chile to start a new life in the Chilean Navy.

Renamed the Almirante Cochrane the ship carried over the huge array of armaments fitted during its time in the Royal Navy, all of which have been built in miniature by Luis. These include five types of radar, a bow sonar system, a Seawolf anti-air missile system, a Harpoon anti-ship missile system, a Sting Ray anti-submarine torpedo system, six naval and machine guns, two Seagnat decoy systems… oh, and a Cougar SH32 anti-submarine helicopter.

There more to see of all of that lot at Luis’ photostream. Set sail for Chile by clicking the link above –  just make sure they know you’re coming…

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The Tankfather

Lego Renault FT-17 Tank RC

Renault may be better known for things like this and this, but it’s a little-known fact that they’re also the inventors of the modern tank. The tank was first used by the British Army in the First World War, but it was horrendously slow, unreliable and a magnet for unwanted attention. Renault took the idea and simplified it, creating a vehicle that was much lighter, more reliable, and featured a fully-armoured 360-degree rotating turret.

Lego Renualt FT-17 Tank

The Renault FT-17 could also be operated by a few of just two, and it thus became a phenomenally successful design. Around 3,000 units were produced in France (mostly in 1918), whilst another 950 were built under license in the United States. Twenty-seven countries/revolutionary armies used the FT-17 over the next thirty years and the design fought in almost a dozen separate wars, which probably says as much about mankind’s propensity for war as it does the brilliance of the FT-17.

Lego Renualt FT-17 Tank

This beautiful Lego replica of the Renault FT-17 has been built by TLCB regular Sariel, who has recreated the world’s first light tank in glorious detail. Inside the stunningly accurate shell are three Power Functions motors, a Micro Motor, and a third-party SBrick programmable bluetooth control brick. Each track is suspended via oscillating bogies and powered by an individual Medium Motor, a third Medium Motor rotates the gun turret, whilst the Micro Motor powers the gun barrel elevation.

It all works perfectly, as demonstrated in the excellent video below, and you can see all the photos and read more about the build at the Eurobricks discussion forum and via Sariel’s Renault FT-17 Flickr album by clicking here.

YouTube Video

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Steampunk Sunday

Lego Steampunk Car

For reasons unknown the Elves were in a steampunk mood today, which is odd as we suspect they know even less about this sub-genre than we do. Still, their finds are splendid, and thus here they are!

Both have been built by Krzysztof Pusz of Flickr and feature some simply ingenious parts usage. First up (above) is the ‘Bulbulator‘, which actually doesn’t look that dissimilar from the steam cars of the early days of motoring. Krzysztof’s second steampunk build looks like nothing from any time period ever, but a steam-powered monowheel does seem a marvellous way to get to Walmart.

There more to see of each brick-built whimsy at Krzysztof’s photostream – head to Flickr via the links above.

Lego Steampunk Monowheel

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Nomad

Lego Technic Ariel Nomad BuWizz RC

Originally a motorcycle manufacturer, then maker of the ridiculous Atom, Ariel have since stepped into the world of off-road buggies, and what a way they’ve done it. Using the Atom’s unique external cage design and a 2.4 litre Honda engine, the Nomad can annihilate almost anything off-road, and it doesn’t even have all-wheel-drive.

This incredible-looking Technic version can, we strongly suspect, do exactly the same within the off-road Lego Community (there is such a thing!), especially as it’s rocking a third-party BuWizz+ bluetooth control battery that can deliver up to eight times the Power of LEGO’s own system to the twin XL motors driving the rear wheels.

Builder Corrado has filmed a video review of the BuWizz+ device using his Technic Nomad, with impressive results. You can see all the images of the build on both Flickr and Eurobricks, you can watch Corrado’s video review below, and you can read TLCB’s review of the BuWizz bluetooth brick by clicking here.

YouTube Video

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Iceploration

Lego Ice Planet 2002 Mobile Laboratory

Space may look exciting, but it’s mostly a freezing expanse of pointless nothingness. Much like Alaska.

Unlike Alaska though, there are people in space concerned with researching renewable energy, both in real life and in LEGO’s spacey universe, and they’ve got themselves some mighty impressive equipment to help them do it.

This is the Ice Planet 2002 Mobile Research Laboratory built by Master MOCer and TLCB regular Andrea Lattanzio (aka Norton74), and it’s fitted not with guns, but with a range of old-timey LEGO research equipment.

Unfortunately for the Ice Planet scientists the thieving scumbags of Blacktron do have guns, and they’re more than happy to use them to deny scientific progress (sounds a lot like Alaska again…). However the Lego Community have recently taken it upon themselves to equip the Ice Planet researchers with a few weapons of their own, and thus hopefully Andrea’s brilliant Mobile Research Laboratory can continue its valuable work unimpeded.

Join the research into clean renewable energy with Ice Planet 2002 on Flickr here, and you can read how the real guys (NASA) are researching how to combat climate change by clicking here. Even if you’re an Alaskan.

Lego Ice Planet 2002 Mobile Laboratory

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Friendly Fire

Lego Friends Star Wars B-Wing

The battle between the Dark Side and the… er, Pinkish-Purpley Side continues to rage. Following his previously featured ‘BFF Y-Wing‘, Flickr’s Tyler Sky has jumped to the other end of the Heartlake City Rebel Alliance Alphabet and built this delightfully colourful ‘Friendly B-Wing’. Don’t be fooled by the cutesy exterior though, as the extra large cockpit with two Friends on board allows one of them to focus solely on blowing stuff up. Join the friendly resistance at Tyler’s photostream by clicking here.

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Gadgets are Getting Smaller

Lego Aston Martin DB5 Goldfinger

Every year gadgets get smaller. Well, apart from when Apple – being the innovators that they are – decided that their iPhones should get progressively larger until they resembled televisions, and charge people a premium for doing so.

Anyway, enough about the geniuses in Apple’s phone department, everything else is getting smaller. The first computer filled a whole office, early mobile phones were the size of a suitcase, and the ancient photocopier here in TLCB Towers has an entire room to itself.

The same is true of LEGO’s new 10262 Aston Martin DB5 ‘007’ set. Packed with gadgets and looking mostly like a DB5, 10262 is 1,295 pieces of 007-inspired excellence, yet even it is subject to the rule of technological shrinkage.

Flickr’s Gerald Cacas is the man doing the shrinking as he’s captured the world’s most famous movie car in a model that’s just seven studs wide, and there’s a even a gadget or two included. There’s more to see of Gerald’s 007-in-minitaure at his photostream – click the link above and think small!

Lego Aston Martin DB5 Goldfinger

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Tank-a-Cycle

Lego Kleines Kettenkraftrad HK 101

This may be a cartoony creation, but the German military really did drive/ride about in these. It’s a Kleines Kettenkraftrad HK 101, or SdKfz 2 for short (our name for it is way better), a kind of half-tank-half-motorbike configuration designed to fit inside the hold of a Junkers JU 52 transport plane.

The SdKfz 2 was the only gun tractor capable of being transported by air in this way and it therefore became one of the most versatile vehicles of the German military, being used for everything from troop transport over deep mud to pulling heavy loads, aircraft tug work, and even cable-laying.

The Kettenkraftrad HK 101 was designed and built by NSU (who later became Audi), using the Schachtellaufwerk overlapped and interleaved road wheel mechanism found on almost all of Germany’s tracked military vehicles.

Lego SdKfz 2 KettenKrad

A four-cylinder Opel motor gave the SdKfz 2 a top speed of around 40mph, and it could climb slopes of over 24°, even in sand. A skid-steer system operated in addition to the somewhat superfluous-looking front wheel, allowing the SdKfz 2 to nimbly (for a 1.5 ton vehicle) traverse the most impassible terrains.

This magnificent recreation of the Kettenkraftrad HK 101 comes from previous bloggee and TLCB favourite Redfern1950s, who has built his SdKfZ in Afrika Korps specification, complete with two cartoonish German military officers, a removable engine-cover, and a good shot at the fantastically complicated Schachtellaufwerk track system.

There’s much more to see of Redfern’s delightful Kettenkraftrad HK 101 model as well as his other vehicles from the Nazis’ short-lived Afrika Korps campaign on Flickr – click these words to make the jump!

Lego Afrika Korps Kettenkrad

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Big Fish, Little Fish, Cardboard Box

Lego DAF FAs 2500 Truck

A staple dancemove in this writer’s repertoire, you can now do ‘Big Fish, Little Fish, Cardboard Box’ in Lego form! Well, it’s more ‘One Box, Two Box, No Box at All’, but close enough.

This unusual truck is a DAF FAS 2500 in ‘DHS Houtmotcentrale Rijen BJ-08-DT’ specification. Of course we know exactly what that means, we’re just choosing not to explain it here.

Lego DAF FAs 2500 Truck

Moving on… previous bloggee Arian Janssens of Flickr is the builder behind it and, as we’ve become accustomed to, his attention to detail and eye for realism are second to none.

There’s much more to see of his superb DAF FAS 2500 DHS Houtmotcentrale Rijen BJ-08-DT on Flickr via the link above, and if you’d like to learn ‘Big Fish, Little Fish, Cardboard Box’ so you can dance as well as this writer, here’s an excellent instructional video courtesy of Bob the Builder.

Lego DAF FAs 2500 Truck

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I’ll Be There

Lego Dodge Ram Baywatch

We’re not sure what was going on in the ’90s, but TV theme tunes seemed to focus on simply turning up, Friends and Baywatch being prime examples. This writer was much too young to appreciate Baywatch at the time and thought it was actually serious rescue drama, rather than light pornography for Dads, but nevertheless they did occasionally save people from the dangers of two feet of salt water.

One of the tools at their disposal to accomplish this was a fleet of bright yellow pick-up trucks, such as this Dodge Ram by Flickr’s ER0L. ER0L has recreated the ageing Dodge brilliantly in 7-wide Speed Champions style, and he’s thrown in a plethora of rescue apparatus for when the Baywatch lifeguards do finally actually rescue someone. See more of the classic Ram at ER0L’s photostream by clicking here.

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