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BuWizz | Bluetooth Control Battery | Review

Lego BuWizz Review

The Lego Car Blog Elves love remote control Lego creations. Well, they love them if they are at the controls. As regular readers will know there have been a number of remote control related incidents here at TLCB Towers, resulting in much Elven hospitalisation. Well things are about to get taken up a notch…

Revealed here as a Kickstarter project back in June 2016 the BuWizz bluetooth control battery brick has become a regular third-party accessory within the Lego Community. With claims of up to eight times the power of LEGO’s own Power Functions battery set-up, now expanded to twelve times with the release of BuWizz 2.0, the potential to transform the way Lego models move is huge. But does the BuWizz live up to the hype? We’ve been sent a copy to find out…

Lego BuWizz Review

The Brick

Our BuWizz arrived a simple cardboard box, packaged only with a little piece of paper denoting the required warnings and LED indicator meanings. The BuWizz brick is a clever thing, incorporating both a rechargeable li-ion battery and a bluetooth control into one 8×4 stud box, reminiscent of LEGO’s own battery boxes from the 1980s. There are studs on top, tubes on the bottom, and four Technic pin holes with which the BuWizz can be attached to genuine LEGO pieces.

Our BuWizz came in a dark grey hue that we don’t think matches any of LEGO’s colours, but seeing as it can be mounted internally within a creation an exact match isn’t required. The moulding quality is OK, perfectly adequate for the job in hand, but certainly not as good as an official LEGO piece (or the rival SBrick reviewed here previously). On top of the BuWizz are two connection ports, a status LED, and four LEGO Power Functions compatible power outlets.

You must charge your BuWizz upon arrival via a micro USB, which the pack does not contain. This is a bit of a shame as it means the device is not truly plug-and-play, requiring a lead from something else in order to charge. We found a lead, plugged in the BuWizz, which let us know it was charging via the LED on top, and busied ourselves for a few hours.

Lego BuWizz Review

Set Up

Upon returning to our BuWizz a green light indicated we were ready to go. Like the aforementioned SBrick, the Buwizz brick uses an app to connect your phone or tablet to itself. The app is an easy download and connects the device seamlessly. Within it are six pre-programmed control interfaces available to operate your model. Each requires a small amount of set-up so that the app knows which of your motors is connected to which port which is simple enough, although there is no ‘test’ function as per the SBrick, which would be useful.

We connected four XL motors mounted within a direct-drive skid-steer test rig to the BuWizz battery and hit the controls. Weirdly one motor (and only one) span the wrong way, but the BuWizz’s simple ‘reverse’ option soon cured that. Then, because we have the mental age of five, we engaged ‘Ludicrous Mode’…

Inspired by Tesla, BuWizz’s ‘Ludicrous Mode’ turns up the power to the motors by a factor of three. Multiply that by the four motors you can drive at once and you get twelve times the power! And boy, does it show… Continue reading

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BuWizz Buggy

Lego Technic Remote Control Buggy

[Whiiiir] [Elven Screaming] [Thump] [Whiiiir]…

An all too familiar pattern of noises floated into TLCB Office from the corridor today. Said pattern has been heard here at TLCB Towers on numerous occasions and it always means tidying up for us. Sigh.

A glance into the corridor revealed the scene of expected carnage, with an Elf – high on power – repeatedly driving a nimble off-road buggy over a group of already squashed Elves.

The controls have now been taken away, the victims patched up, and we can take a look at the vehicular weapon in question. Built by Anto of Eurobricks it’s an entry into the current BuWizz Fast Car Competition, in which the third-party bluetooth brick specialists have challenged builders to make, well… a BuWizz powered fast car.

Lego Technic RC Buggy

With up to eight times the power of LEGO’s own Power Functions battery/receiver system a BuWizz powered creation is certainly able to outrun a fleeing TLCB Elf, and with competition entrants having to complete the longest jump possible Anto’s RC buggy had the suspension to bounce over victims without any problems at all.

There’s more to see of Anto’s brilliant remote control buggy at the Eurobricks forum, plus you can watch it in action via the video below.

We’ve also got our hands on our own BuWizz brick, courtesy of the BuWizz team, and will be conducting our own tests shortly [maniacal laugh!] in order to bring you a full review. Whilst we find out whether eight times the power really is possible you can find all of the BuWizz powered creations previously featured here via this archives search, and you can read our five-star review of BuWizz’s rival SBrick by clicking here.

YouTube Video

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BuWizz Fast Car Competition

BuWizz Competition

Third-party bluetooth control wizards BuWizz have powered numerous creations that have appeared here at The Lego Car Blog over the past few years. With up to eight times the power of LEGO’s own Power Functions battery and IR Receiver set-up, BuWizz-powered creations are capable of very un-LEGO-like speeds.

The BuWizz team would like to see just how fast your creation can go and as such they’re running a competition this month to find the fastest Lego cars on the internet. There’s a twist too, which can you discover in the link and/or video below…

BuWizz RC Battery for Lego

If you’d like to enter your own remote control Lego creation you can do so via the BuWizz website, and there are some fantastic prizes on offer for the winners! First place will receive the new LEGO Technic 42083 Bugatti Chiron set revealed here previously, whilst second and third places will get their hands on some awesome BuWizz goodies (so you can make your fast car even faster!).

To read the competition rules and to enter your own fast car click the link below!

Enter the BuWizz Fast Car Competition

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76112 App-Controlled Batmobile | Set Preview

Lego 76112 App Controlled Batmobile

Third-party (i.e. non-LEGO) bluetooth connection devices such as the superb SBrick and BuWizz feature regularly in the models that we publicise here at The Lego Car Blog. Able to connect your creation to your phone for remote control, and – in the case of the SBrick – even programme your model in way that betters LEGO’s own purpose-built robotics systems, they’ve revolutionised what can be achieved in Lego building.

The LEGO Company have been unusually slow to meet this demand themselves, however now (and probably unfortunately for the companies above), LEGO’s own bluetooth-controller is nearly here, launching first as part of the 321-piece 76112 Batmobile set.

Part of LEGO’s rebranded ‘Powered Up’ range, the new controller adds bluetooth control and programming to Power Functions and will be available as a stand-alone product that can be added to existing sets and creations following the launch as part of the 76112 Batmobile set.

LEGO’s press release states;

“The LEGO Batman App-Controlled Batmobile, created for children 8 years of age and older, combines LEGO building and remote-control car play. It is the first codeable and programmable LEGO Batmobile that is fully controllable via smart device. Users can steer the Batmobile using one of two preset remote-control interfaces or personalize their experience through a customizable interface. With the interface unlocked, users move sliders, buttons and other elements to customize the remote control to their liking. Through a coding canvas that will be introduced later this year, users can code and re-code speed, direction, sound and duration to program various movements and stunts and create their own unique driving experiences.”

Whether this will ultimately usher in the demise of the excellent third-party bluetooth products used by the Lego Community currently or spur them on to further innovation and development we’re not sure. We hope it’s the latter, as this competition could bring about a multitude of top-quality bluetooth options for Lego models in the near future (we’ll see if we can do a back-to-back review of all three bluetooth controllers later in the year).

LEGO’s 76122 App-Powered Batmobile set will hit shelves on August 1st costing around $100, and you can read our reviews of the SBrick and BuWizz bluetooth controllers currently available via the links in the text above.

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The Power of Four

Lego Technic RC Buggy

We are very thankful to reader and previous bloggee Lipko today, as he a) found us this awesome Technic RC buggy, and b) most importantly, he found it before one of the Elves did. That’s because this monstrous creation by Didumos69 features four L Motors, all-wheel-drive, and two BuWizz LiPo battery bluetooth controllers, making it very probably the most capable Elf-smushing creation built yet.

Thankfully there will be no Elven smushing today and you can see more of Didumos69’s riotous build, which also includes a V8 piston engine, superb suspension complete with caster angle and Ackerman geometry steering at the Eurobricks discussion forum, where there’s also a video showing what two BuWizzes can achieve when hooked up to four L Motors and all-wheel-drive…

Lego Technic RC Buggy

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Technic Bugatti Chiron | Picture Special

Lego Technic Bugatti Chiron

A very special supercar requires a very special Lego model…

LEGO’s own Bugatti Chiron set, previewed here at The Lego Car Blog earlier in the year, is due later in 2018. However one builder has beaten LEGO to it, and in doing so may have set the bar not just higher than LEGO themselves could hope to achieve, but possibly higher than any Technic supercar has done to date. This is Leviathan‘s 4,000-piece, 3.7KG, two year in the making 1:8 Technic Bugatti Chiron supercar.

Lego Technic Bugatti Chiron RC

Designed as a modular construction, as per a real car, Leviathan’s Bugatti Chiron features Power Functions remote control operated via a third-party BuWizz bluetooth brick, a seven speed dual-clutch gearbox, all-wheel-drive, working steering with Ackermann geometry, electronically height adjustable independent suspension, a replicated W16 engine, and even active aerodynamics.

Lego Technic Bugatti Chiron Remote Control

Five Power Functions motors are controlled by the BuWizz bluetooth brick, with two RC motors driving all four wheels, an XL motor powering the seven-speed dual clutch gearbox, and a fourth motor powering the steering. The fifth motor uses a gearbox to switch between two functions; raising/lowering the suspension, and controlling the three-position rear spoiler/air-brake (shown in the picture above in air-brake mode and in the image below fully retracted).

Lego Technic Bugatti Chiron Supercar

Leviathan’s Bugatti Chiron is very probably the most advanced Lego model we’ll see all year, and if LEGO’s own 42083 Technic Bugatti Chiron set is half as good when it arrives later on this year it’ll definitely be a set worth having. In the meantime you can read full details of Leviathan’s unbelievable creation at the Eurobricks forum, where there are also images showing the amazing engineering within, you can see the full gallery of images on Flickr, and you can watch a video demonstrating all of the model’s incredible functions by clicking here.

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Ugly but Effective

Lego BuWizz RC Trophy Truck

The best off-roaders are never the prettiest things. Sensual curves and wind-cheating aerodynamics come a very distant second to approach/departure angles and suspension articulation.

Eurobricks’ rm8 has employed a similar tactic with his BuWizz-controlled trophy truck. Despite claims that it’s inspired by the Ferrari GTC4 Lusso it has about as much in common with that car as your Mom does with Charlize Theron. They’re the same species, and everything is kinda in the same place, but that’s about it.

Lego Technic Trophy Truck Remote Control

What rm8’s trophy truck lacks in aesthetic appeal however, it more that compensates for with off-road ability. Powered by a LEGO Buggy Motor, with servo steering and BuWizz control, plus bouncy independent front and live-axle rear suspension, it’s absolutely mega off-road, which should help it in the BuWizz Fast Car Competition in which it’s been entered.

There’s lots more to see at the Eurobricks forum via the link above, and you can watch the model in action via the ace video below.

YouTube Video

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Diggin’ Double

Lego Technic Remote Control Excavator

LEGO’s excellent Power Functions components have brought a new ease to motorising Technic models. Small, simple to install and reasonably powerful, the wide range of motors, infrared receivers and battery boxes have found their way into countless Lego creations featured here over the years.

It didn’t take long however, for the clever boffins in the Lego Community to think ‘Great… but what if Power Functions was really powerful?…’

The result is the BuWizz brick, an integrated rechargeable battery and bluetooth receiver that delivers up to eight times the power of LEGO’s own Power Functions system. To which Anto of Eurobricks thought ‘Great… but what if I had two…’

This is the fruit of Anto’s endeavour; a neat if unspectacular looking Technic excavator, with two BuWizz third-party bricks. The first controls the independently driven tracks (each powered by a Medium motor), the front-mounted blade (also powered a Medium motor) and the arm-mounted LEDs.

The second BuWizz device controls the superstructure rotation (via a Large motor), the two-stage arm (via an XL motor and Large motor respectively), and finally the bucket (powered by a Medium motor).

That’s a lot of motors and, thanks to those two BuWizz bricks, a lot of power too. So much so that Anto’s Technic excavator really can, well… excavate. Full details can be found at the Eurobricks discussion forum, and you watch Anto’s excavator in action via the video below.

YouTube Video

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Election Enforcement

Lego Technic GAZ Tigr SPM-2

Russia’s recent presidential elections once more provided an emphatic win for Vladimir Putin. Securing his fourth consecutive term in office with a huge 77% of the vote, Putin defied the odds, a constitution which limits consecutive terms to two, accusations of voting irregularities, and the assassination and imprisonment of the other candidates. A thoroughly deserved win then!

The run-up to the election which delivered Putin’s decisive victory was also assisted by a thorough and active police force, ensuring the the Russian people were safe and secure to cast their all-important vote. Many vehicles were deployed to this end, but our favourite is this, the GAZ Tigr SPM-2.

Lego Technic GAZ Tigr SPM-2

With 7mm armour plating, a four foot wading depth, and powered by a 5.9 litre Cummins diesel engine, the GAZ Tigr is the perfect vehicle for Russia’s armed forces to traverse their country’s vast and varied landscape. It’s also large enough to hold a number of police offers plus any citizens that are as yet unsure of whom to vote for.

This brilliant police-spec Technic GAZ Tigr SPM-2 comes from previous bloggee filsawgood and instead of containing undecided voters/rival political candidates it’s stuffed full of technical wizardry. All four independently suspended wheels are powered by a pair of BuWizz bluetooth bricks controlling four Large drive motors and Servo steering motor, whilst a Medium motor powers the front-mounted winch. There’s also a six-cylinder piston engine, opening hood, doors and sunroof, and a fully appointed interior ready to receive any political dissidents.

Lego Technic GAZ Tigr SPM-2

There’s lots more to see of filsawgood’s hugely impressive GAZ Tigr SPM-2 at both Flickr and the Eurobricks discussion forum – take a look via the links above and remember to show your support for the President in the comments.

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Orange Crush

Lego Technic Trial Truck RC

Suggested by a reader, and then necessitated by a massive Elven tantrum, today’s post comes from previous bloggee Alexey Tikhvinsky aka SilenWin. It’s based upon an earlier blogged creation of his, which it turn was based upon a model by another previous bloggee Lucio Switch back in 2015.

The subsequent three years of development has led to this, the ‘Indominus Mk3’. Driven by four RC Buggy Motors – the most powerful motors LEGO have ever produced, with two BuWizz third-party bluetooth bricks delivering up to eight times the power of LEGO’s own Power Functions system, pneumatic shock-absorbers, and portal-axels with planetary gear reduction, SilenWin’s Indominus trial truck can go just about anywhere and over just about anything.

We’re going to explore this all-conquering ability in the corridors of TLCB Towers today, where there may be some ‘accidental’ Elven casualties. Whilst we have some fun at the Elves’ expense you can check out full details of the build on Eurobricks plus you can see all of the images on Flickr here.

Lego Technic Trial Truck RC

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Lean on Me

Lego RC Trike

Weird electric city vehicles seem to pop up all the time in concept form tasked with easing urban congestion and cutting pollution. And then no-one ever builds one because, frankly, consumers would rather sit traffic breathing polluted air in a giant SUV.

Still, one day maybe these things will take off, but until then we’ll make do with previous bloggee Nico71‘s BuWizz-powered leaning tricycle. Similar to Toyota’s limited production i-Road concept, or those weird three-wheeled Piaggio scooter thingies, Nico’s concept can actively lean into corners to keep it stable, and with up to eight times the power of LEGO’s own Power Functions system from the BuWizz bluetooth brick, it probably needs that function.

It’s not our usual fodder here at The Lego Car Blog, but it’s a rather cleverly engineered build and one that we’ll probably all be driving in real life at some point. See more on Brickshelf via the link above.

Lego RC Trike

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Monster Bug

Lego Monster Bug 4x4 Crawler

We’re going to need a bigger slipper…

Sariel’s latest creation sure looks tough to squash. Not so our Elves, who are famously easy to smush into the office carpet. It’s been a while since the last Elven flattening, but fear not readers – today Elf-on-Elf violence returned in a big way.

With all-wheel-drive powered by two XL Motors geared for rock-crawling Sariel’s latest build wouldn’t normally be fast enough to claim any victims. Add in a third-party BuWizz battery and bluetooth receiver combo though, and up to eight times more power than LEGO’s own system can be delivered to the motors.

The aggressively low gearing still caps the top speed at a lowly figure mind, but if an Elf were to quietly sneak out of the cage room while its colleagues were seated around the old TV watching Transformers cartoons, and return at the controls of this, there really wouldn’t be much chance of escape.

Sigh. We now have some clearing up to do and a jubilant Elf needs a meal token reward (not for the smushing, just the find), so we’ll hand you over to Sariel’s photostream for all the photos. Click the link to take a look at his monster bug.

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Baja Redux

Lego Technic Baja 1000 Buggy RC

The Elven annoyance continues here at The Lego Car Blog, as this is so their kind of vehicle and they didn’t find it. No smushings today! Suggested by a reader this is RacingBrick’s Baja 1000 Class 1 buggy, inspired by a creation by Agrof blogged here two years ago.

RacingBrick has equipped his Class 1 buggy with LEGO’s insanely powerful Buggy Motors hooked up to a third-party BuWizz bluetooth control brick, delivering up to 8x the power of LEGO’s own Power Functions system.

Lego Technic Baja 1000 Buggy RC

All that power can be put to excellent use thanks to monster suspension and a lightweight frame, making RacingBrick’s creation one of the most capable off-road vehicles we’ve ever posted. You can read more about the build at RacingBrick’s website by clicking here, but before you do that we really recommend watching what his buggy in action, it’s an amazing bit of kit!

YouTube Video:

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She’s Electric

Lego Technic Tesla Model S Remote Control

The future of transport is electric, and no manufacturer has done more to advance the technology than electric car start-up Tesla.

Founded from the proceeds of Paypal, Elon Musk’s ludicrously ambitious venture has gone from producing a humble modified Lotus Elise in tiny numbers to become the largest manufacturer of li-ion batteries in the world, completely changing the automotive landscape in the process.

This is the car that made the company, the Model S sedan, which proved that electric cars didn’t have to be slow, ugly econo-boxes, and that they could be produced at a price comparable to an internal-combustion-engined rival.

This huge Technic recreation of one of the most important cars ever built comes from Fosapifi of Eurobricks, and it’s very nearly as technology-packed as the real car.

Opening doors, hood, tailgate, jump-seats, and independent suspension all feature, and the model is controlled by two third-party power-boosting BuWizz bricks, allowing Fosapifi’s Model S to be driven by eight (yes eight!) Large Power Functions motors, plus a Servo for steering. The result is, much like the real car, a vehicle that makes way more power than you’d expect.

How much power? Click the link above to visit the Eurobricks forum for full details, you watch the Tesla in action courtesy of the video below, and you can hear today’s title track by clicking here.

YouTube Video:

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Agent Orange

Lego 1970 Toyota Celica TA22

Here’s a car that we’d like to own for real. Toyota’s first generation Celica produced between 1970 and 1977 has become a seriously cool ride, even more so when painted bright orange and lightly modified. This awesome remote controlled Lego version of the 1970 TA22-type Celica comes from LegoMarat of Flickr, and he’s lightly modified his creation too.

Lego 1970 Toyota Celica TA22

With a third-party BuWizz brick installed LegoMarat’s Celica produces up to eight times the power of a model powered by a standard LEGO battery, making his model a seriously quick bit of kit.

There are more images to view on Flickr via the link above, and you can see the real-life Celica TA22 that inspired LegoMarat’s build by clicking here.

Lego Toyota Celica Remote Control

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