Author Archives: thelegocarblogger

Beige Brick Barkas

This pot of Communist cream is a Barkas B1000, an East German forward-control van produced from 1961 until 1988, and powered by a tiny one-litre, three-cylinder, two-stroke engine.

Available as a pick-up, an 8-seat minibus, and – as pictured here – a panel van, the B1000 could carry a one-ton payload (probably very slowly), and proved so reliable and adept at doing so it was built virtually unchanged for nearly thirty years.

This charming Model Team recreation of the B1000 comes from previous bloggee and TLCB favourite Legostalgie, who has captured the East German workhorse beautifully in beige bricks.

Opening doors and a superbly detailed interior are included, and you can head to the other side of the Iron Curtain sometime in the 1970s via the link to Flickr above.

Panic-Buy Fuel!

There is currently a fuel supply crisis in TLCB’s home nation, caused by COVID or Brexit or something.

Whatever the reason, a portion of the population (probably the same portion who stock-piled toilet rolls during the COVID lock-downs) have gone mad, and are trying to refuel every five minutes, in doing so turning a really rather minor problem into a rather larger one. Because they’re idiots.

Typifying this idiocy are a select group of morons who have followed tanker trucks in the hope they’re delivering fuel, and not olive oil, or liquid nitrogen, or – in one particularly amusing case – mortar.

Cue Arian Janssens‘ DAF FTS XF95 ‘Mestwagen’, which we think means manure tanker, but frankly without actually knowing what’s inside it we’re just guessing, much like a worrying number of the UK population have been doing over the past week or two.

You can follow Arian’s DAF ‘Mestwagen’ to wherever it is it’s going in the hope of procuring some petrol via the link above, whilst we start stockpiling tinned food and toilet paper.

Lego Technic: An Unofficial Illustrated History

Psychiatrist’s Digest, Volume XVI

INTRODUCTION

What does it take to cause an otherwise sane person to write a 400-page book in their spare time, primarily for personal satisfaction? This important question will be investigated at length herein, using a well-researched case study concerning one Cole [Redacted], who, being myself, commands significant personal interest from this researcher. Beware of disturbing psychological evidence.

TESTIMONY

I am a Canadian Lego fan by the name of Cole, but since I prefer a little anonymity on the internet, I think I’ll leave us on a first-name basis. I’ve been interested in LEGO since I was five, when I got the awesome birthday present of my Dad and uncle’s 1980s LEGO Classic Space collection. Once I was a few years older, I got heavily into LEGO Star Wars. I was an obsessive sort of kid, and wanted to know everything I possibly could about it, which mainly meant spending hours poring over the DK LEGO Star Wars Visual Dictionaries and Character Encyclopaedias. [Early signs of instability] As I matured, [Patient is unaware of the meaning of the word] though, I began searching for a new theme to become involved in.

Eventually, I decided on LEGO Technic, and acquired the 42043 Mercedes-Benz Arocs 3245 set, which struck me as being a great deal and a great parts pack. For the price of $270 CAD, I could get 2,700 pieces, including a little of almost everything in the Technic lineup, including pneumatics and electronics. After building and enjoying the main and alternate models, and getting some more Power Functions, I ripped the set apart and dove head-on into MOCing. My learning process was heavy on trial-and-error (especially heavy on the latter part) [Low self esteem?], but I soon started up my online presence on the official LEGO Technic and Mindstorms galleries. Over time I moved from there to MOCpages, and then, following its untimely demise, I joined Eurobricks, [Patient displays tendency to mash unrelated words together] where I remain to this day. (My trial-and-error crash course had brought me to a point where my stuff wasn’t a total embarrassment on this more “high-class” site.)

Anyways, the story of my Technic book [The 400-page folly of the patient] begins a bit earlier, back in the MOCpages days, I believe. Because of certain circumstances, I ended up having a lot of spare time away from home (and my LEGO), that needed filling. Somehow or other I decided that it would be fun to write a book of all the Technic sets, since this was something that I really wanted to have [Turning point in the case]. I was still the same kid who wanted to obsess over Visual Dictionaries, but all I had for Technic was a stack of old LEGO catalogues. I’m not sure how far I expected to get when I started, but I was enjoying myself, and before I knew it, I had a binder full of a hand-written first draft covering the years 1977-2017! The next step was to type and format the whole tome, and I ended up practically rewriting large sections of the book in the process. It would have been way faster to just start the whole process online, but I didn’t have a laptop or anything, so I made do with what I had. Anyways, I did a proofreading or two, and then printed the whole thing out for myself at 20c per page (I’d added 2018 by this point) Eventually, after adding 2019 and 2020, I got around to trying to make the book presentable for other peoples’ use [Could this be contagious?], so I did a bunch more proofreading and checking, and eventually was able to put the book up on Eurobricks as a free download

This year I revisited the book, making a bunch of small fixes that readers had suggested, removed my rather subjective ratings (I’ve had people who liked them and people who didn’t. They’re gone for now, but they might just come back) [Patient is indecisive and easily swayed by public opinion], and added the 2021 sets. I put this on Eurobricks as well, and, as suggested by forum moderator Milan, reposted the book in a clearer format. For now, the book is finished, but I expect to have more changes coming eventually – apart from the inevitable 2022 update, another Eurobricks user volunteered to help me with improving some formatting things, so there may be an update of that sort coming sometime or other. [The patient shows no sign of concluding their fantasy]

SUMMARY OF EVIDENCE

So, what does this book consist of? Continue reading

LEGO Technic 42127 The Batman Batmobile | Set Preview

Controversial opinion: The world needs another comic book superhero movie rehash like a second Trump presidency.

And yet, thanks to Hollywood seemingly only funding sequels, prequels and spin-offs, that’s exactly what we’re going to get. Again.

And, as LEGO have a licensing agreement with DC Comics, that means we’re going to get another Batmobile set. Again.

This is the new LEGO Technic 42127 ‘The Batman’ Batmobile, and it looks bloody awful. Vaguely reminiscent of a muscle car with a barbecue in the boot, the new Batmobile makes for both a poor Technic set and movie car.

1,360 pieces, working steering, opening doors, a light brick that we don’t understand, and a barbecue in the boot do not seem to warrant an age recommendation of 10+, which we suspect has everything to do with marketing to a target group and nothing to do with build complexity.

42127 joins a series of ‘The Batman’ sets that span several LEGO themes, precluding the movie’s arrival in 2022. Still, at least LEGO have released a new Batmobile Tumbler set too…

Sand Rover

This TLCB Writer has been fortunate enough to go to a great many sandy places, but never has the sand been blue. Yellow, white, grey, black, red… but not blue. Someone at LEGO must’ve been somewhere this writer hasn’t though, as ‘Sand Blue’ became the name for one of their later colour additions.

The hue is also a near perfect match for one of Land Rover’s original ’60s colours, which regular bloggee Jonathan Elliott has deployed to wonderful effect with his Land Rover Series II.

Unfortunately not quite all the pieces required are available in Sand Blue, so some photoshop tricky might have been used too, but if you can tell which parts are altered you can win 100 TLCB Points!

Head to Jonathan’s photostream to see more, and to find out which pieces aren’t quite as blue as they appear.

Duped

This delightful hover-courier (which looks rather like a floating coal scuttle) has us perplexed here at TLCB, being simultaneously Town and Duplo themed. Towplo? Whatever it is it’s ace, and there’s more to see courtesy of the excellently-named Dwarlin Forkbeard here.

Supercar Senna

The McLaren Senna has appeared in LEGO form a few times, from the official 75892 Speed Champions and 42123 Technic sets, to a full-size display version. However there hasn’t yet been a Senna in our favourite form; a Technic Supercar.

Jordan Langerak has fixed this omission in spectacular style, with this incredible Technic replica of McLaren’s limited run hypercar.

Working suspension, a paddle-shift gearbox linked to the V8 engine, functioning steering, butterfly doors, and – perhaps most impressively – mechanical ‘active’ aero all feature, and make Jordan’s Senna one of the finest Technic Supercars of recent times.

There’s more to see of the build via Jordan’s ‘Lego Technic McLaren Senna’ album on Flickr, which includes extensive imagery and a link to a video of the model’s impressive features in action. Take a look via the link above.

On the National Express

On the National Express there’s a jolly hostess
Selling crisps and tea
She’ll provide you with drinks and theatrical winks
For a sky-high fee
Mini-skirts were in style when she danced down the aisle
Back in ’63
But it’s hard to get by when your arse is the size
Of a small country

We have Flickr’s Vince_Toulouse to thank for allowing this tenuous link to a Divine Comedy song, and his delightfully strange ‘Intercity Express’. Art deco style, an inspired colour choice, and the ingenious repurposing of previously-useless ‘Life on Mars’ air-pump pieces make us want to hop on-board to wherever this is going. We’ll have some crisps and tea, thanks.

Distri-brick-tion

LEGO like distribution trucks in their Town/City range. With generic ‘Cargo’ branding and the blandest of styling, they’re… well, perfect actually.

However the Technic and Model Team ranges, which lean more towards supercars and excitingly yellow pieces of construction equipment, tend to omit such workhorses from their line-ups.

Cue Eurobricks’ designer-han, who has decided to right that wrong with this; his fully remote control distribution truck, complete with generic ‘Cargo’ branding and the blandest of styling. And it’s fantastic.

Han’s creation includes remote control drive and steering, a motorised tilting cabin (under which sits a working V8 engine with spinning fans), LED lights front and rear, and – most importantly – a brilliant working tail-lift.

Powered by two L Motors, Han’s tail-lift opens the cargo area, drops parallel to the ground, and lowers to allow an exciting array of ‘Cargo’ (in this case Duplo bricks) to be easily loaded.

It’s well worth a closer look and you can do just that at the Eurobricks forum via the link above, where further details, a video of the truck in action, and a link to building instructions can all be found.

The Transporter 3

With LEGO revealing their new (and really rather excellent looking) 10279 Volkswagen T2 Transporter set, we’re wondering if they will gradually work their way through all the Transporters as if they’re binging on Jason Statham action movies.

Getting there first though, is regular bloggee Jonathan Elliott, whose superb 6-wide recreation of the T3 Transporter looks considerably more realistic than anything that occurred in the third instalment of the movie franchise.

Click the link above to make the jump.

Not a 911

Pretty much every Porsche has – success-wise – lived in the 911’s shadow. The Cayenne is probably the exception, as it casts its own enormous, miserable, SUV-shaped shadow over almost anything. Although it did save Porsche to allow them to keep building 911s.

However even the Cayenne – which outsells the 911 by a factor of three – hasn’t usurped it as the most recognisable Porsche. In fact we think no car brand’s identity is tied to one model more than Porsche’s is to the 911.

Which is shame for all the other Porsches, as some of them were really rather good. The 944 was one of them, and – after years being worth about 50p – is starting to be recognised as an excellent ’80s-’90s Porsche in its own right, with values climbing steadily northwards.

Also recognising Porsche’s other ’80s sports car is previous bloggee (and ‘Featured TFOL‘, if you remember that feature!) Marco Q, who has built it brilliantly in brick-form.

Complete with pop-up headlights, opening doors and hood, a detailed interior, and really rather cleverly constructed (and therefore recognisable) wheels and rear window/spoiler, Marco’s 944 is a fitting homage to a car on the up.

There’s more to see of Marco’s excellent creation at his ‘Porsche’ album on Flickr, which might not contain a 911, but we think it’s perhaps all the better for that. Click the link above to take a look.

My Other Car’s a Mustang

Is there anything more American than a Ford Mustang? OK, Type 2 diabetes and gun ownership, obviously, but apart from those laudable attributes only this* comes close; the Jeep Wrangler.

Borne from the Second World War, the Wrangler has endured for decades, carrying the same aesthetic and legendary off-road ability throughout.

Even if most Wranglers aren’t used for anything beyond transporting a human and their gun to KFC, it’s nice to know they could do a lot more.

Which brings us to this one, as built by Flickr’s Jakub Marcisz entirely from the pieces found within the 10265 Ford Mustang set.

Jakub’s captured America’s second* most iconic vehicle brilliantly from the repurposed parts of its first, and there’s more to see of this all-American-alternate via the link above.

*We’ve just remembered the Ford F-150.

I Met Her in a Club Down in Old Soho…

We often get asked to feature more digital builds, but, well… we just prefer the real thing. So too did Ray Davies, who – in his 1970 hit with The Kinks – rejected the advances of Lola, despite later addressing the controversy around his lyrics by stating “It really doesn’t matter what sex Lola is, I think she’s alright”.

Cue a seamless link to ‘LOLA’ from Marvel’s ‘Agents of Shield’, a 1962 Chevrolet Corvette that hides some rather trick abilities, as recreated here in this marvellous image by Flickr’s Vaionaut.

Like Ray’s admirer in that Soho club, Vaionaut’s ‘LOLA’ doesn’t feature the real pieces you’d expect, but it looks so good we can’t help but think it’s alright too. It’s also capable of doing a few things that a brick-built creation can’t, being rendered in flight in a way that’s very probably more realistic than if it had been constructed from real bricks.

Somewhere in all that there’s a metaphor for accepting someone for who they are, and you can see more of Vaionaut’s digital Chevrolet Corvette ‘LOLA’ via the link above, whilst we ponder it.

*Today’s title song.

Build & Capture Photo Contest

Regular readers of this seedy alleyway at the edge of the internet will know that we (well, our Elves) source the Lego creations showcased here from all over the internet.

The most common source however, is Flickr, thanks to a large Lego Community, excellent groups, chats, and free-to-view imagery that doesn’t require the need to set up an account (take note Instagram).

Flickr have recognised the vibrancy of this sizeable community within their users via their new photography competition, the Flickr x LEGO Build & Capture Contest.

Flickr are looking for images of your builds (or even just mini-figures) displayed in an ‘artsy, fun, or fantastic way’ and here are some great LEGO prizes on offer for the winners.

You can check out the rules, entries, and submit your own photos via the Flickr x LEGO group here, and we hope to see a vehicle creation amongst the winners!

A Vintage Ploughing

Don’t worry, that video of your Mom hasn’t resurfaced again. This lovely vintage tractor was discovered by one of our Elves on Eurobricks today, and it looks rather splendid pictured here against an actual agricultural backdrop.

Proran is the builder and they’ve included functioning steering, a three cylinder engine (with working pistons and valves), a rear power-take-off, and high/low gearbox, along with some rather clever parts usage.

There’s more of Proran’s vintage tractor to see at the Eurobricks discussion forum and you can head out to the farm via the link above.