The Speedway Motors Museum of American Speed in Lincoln, Nebraska looks like our kind of museum! Hosting some of the most spectacular and awesome looking cars from America’s racing history (some of which have appeared here in Lego form!), the museum also runs automotive events, including Cars & Coffee, Drive a Model T Experience, and – this month only – a Lego building competition!
Museum of American Speed – Back to Bricks Building Competition
“Stuck at home? Stay connected this Spring with the Museum of American Speed’s online exclusive Back to the Bricks Lego Build-off Contest. This interactive event is FREE and open to everyone! This is your chance to create your very own LEGO show car from home! Submissions will be judged online and the winner will receive a $100 cash prize along with your build displayed at the Museum for one year! Registration is open through 4/20/20.”
Submit your entries via the link above and you could you see your Lego model displayed alongside some of American’s greatest racers! Thanks to a member of the Lincoln and Omaha LEGO User Group for letting us know about this competition via our Facebook page.
Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, and what better way to build (hah!) on your relationship than with an evening of LEGO love!
The Legoland Discovery Centre in Manchester is holding an alternative adults-only Valentine’s Night on Wednesday 13th February, with complete access to the rides, 4D cinema, Miniland, and thousands upon thousands of LEGO bricks!
The centre’s Master Builders will be there holding workshops, there’s speed-dating on the rides (if you’re looking for your compatible brick!), and prizes throughout the night.
To find out more and to book your ‘For the Love of Bricks’ ticket at the Legoland Discovery Centre in Manchester (UK) click the link below!
The team here at The Lego Car Blog are all big LEGO fans, so the unexpected success of this ropey little website has been – in a way – a dream come true. It’s also meant that for some builders, seeing their work appear here is their dream come true. Whilst we still find this a little weird we’re always delighted when we can make it happen. However there are a few builders who dream… bigger.
One such builder is Andrea Lattanzio aka Norton74. Andrea’s work has appeared here numerous times and he’s one of our Master MOCers too. Recently though, his achievements with bricks have gotten a lot bigger, as Andrea has become one of just fifteen Master Builders worldwide selected to have their work showcased in the new ‘Masterpiece Gallery’ at the incredible LEGO House in The LEGO Group’s home in Billund, Denmark.
Andrea has recently returned from a trip to LEGO’s spectacular new building to join us in one, er… less spectacular. Over to Andrea to tell all about his amazing achievement and how his Lego dream came true.
TLCB: Hello Andrea! You’ve just come back from The LEGO House in Billund where you’ve seen your work featured! Tell us how it happened!
Andrea Lattanzio: First of all I thank you for this chance, I am always very happy to share my passion and my story with other AFOLs and LEGO fans.
I returned a few days ago after a whole week spent between Billund (the hometown and historical HQ of The LEGO Company) and Skaerbaek, a tiny village in western Denmark where for years one of the most important, if not the most important, LEGO fan weekend is held.
The reason for this trip was unique and unrepeatable and even now I find it hard to believe that it really happened. In fact, I was chosen by The LEGO House to exhibit my works in the Masterpiece Gallery along with 14 other ‘Master Builders’ from all over the world.
TLCB: Congratulations! How did they choose you and when did you find out?
Andrea Lattanzio: In order to choose which builders to exhibit in the Masterpiece Gallery (where the builds are on display to the public for a whole year), The LEGO House team asked Lego User Groups around the world to suggest the most deserving builders. In addition, they also checked the Flickr galleries of the most famous builders and then, eventually, selected their finalists.
In my case ItLug suggested, among others, my name and so last March I was contacted by The LEGO House who proposed that they would like to exhibit my works for a year in the Masterpiece Gallery. Obviously, my answer was positive and when I read the email I did not believe it!
TLCB: How did you choose which of your creations to exhibit?
Andrea Lattanzio: The choice of the models was coordinated with The LEGO House team. It was not easy because the showcases, where the MOCs are shown, are quite small and therefore it was necessary to choose small builds. At the beginning they asked for my ESSO Gas Station but it was too big, so we opted for the Scooter Shop and the Shell Gas Station (the latter in mini-fig scale). Unfortunately both were too deep and I had to work to shrink them and bring them under 30cm. There was room for two other small MOCs so I also brought two hot rods which, in my opinion, are amongst the most beautiful I’ve built.
TLCB: How did the LEGO House team host you and how did the set-up day go?
Andrea Lattanzio: Since I set foot in the hotel in Billund until I left the ‘Home of the Brick’, I had the feeling of being ‘spoiled’ and ‘cuddled’ by The LEGO House team. Everything was perfectly organised and they knew exactly who I was and what I had built over the years. They were all very kind and they gave myself and the other ‘Master Builders’ very special treatment with some beautiful gifts.
The set-up day was exciting and I think I will never forget it. We spent all day in the facility and we had lunch and dinner together. Each ‘Master Builder’ dedicated themselves to set up their own part of the display, adding value to the exhibition as best as they could. We also received a guided tour and there was a presentation by Stuart Harris, a senior designer at LEGO. In short, it was one of those days that I will remember forever! Continue reading →
TLCB staff don’t often get out to LEGO shows. Partly because our mysterious identities may be revealed, but mostly because the Elves have a habit of sneaking into our luggage, and our insurance is nowhere near that comprehensive.
Luckily our readers can be more mobile than us, and one such reader contacted us with an offer to cover a LEGO event. Over to today’s Guest Blogger, Jan Mueller…
On the 18th and 19th of March 2017 the exhibition “Floating Bricks – The maritime World of LEGO Bricks“ was held in Hamburg. It took place, appropriately, at a retired ferry terminal in the Altona district of the city.
Up to 1863, Altona was a harbour town which belonged to Denmark, and the Danish influence is partly still present until today. That weekend there were a lot of ships in town, made of Danish LEGO elements.
The fair was organized by the city event guide Hamburg-Führer and powered by the North-German RLUG Stein Hanse (recognized LEGO User Group). The Stein Hanse has organised several well-received exhibitions before and this was their first one in Hamburg. Members of the Stein Hanse had built a detailed oil platform, part of the Hamburg Airport, the Hamburg tube (which mostly goes overground) and many other models, which were put on display for the two-day event.
The RLUG, founded by Martin and Lutz in 2013 has more than 150 LEGO fans as members. One of the invited exhibitors was Brynjar Karl with his 6.5m model of the Titanic to Hamburg. The LEGO Titanic was on its way to New York, but was damaged on the way. Not kidding! Now the Titanic was undergoing some dock-time for repairs in Altona and Brynjar Karl was on-site for live building, supported by some of the other builders present at the show.
Two further additional LEGO artists were also invited: Arjen Oude Kotte (aka Konajra) and Edwin Korstanje from the Netherlands, who are both specialised in large highly detailed ship models.
The location of the exhibition, the old ferry terminal, offered a wonderful view of the Hamburg harbour with its container vessels and cruise ships and made it the perfect place to present maritime LEGO models. There was a fine collection of food trucks present to cater for the 6,000+ visitors, and the attendees also had the chance to build a huge mosaic of Hamburg’s newest landmark: the Elbphilharmonie, a new concert house on the river Elbe.
Many thanks to Jan for joining us here at TLCB with his summary of the Floating Bricks exhibition in Hamburg! If you’d like to report on a LEGO event as Jan has then we’d love to hear from you – simply get in touch via the usual channels and your words and pictures could appear here too.
The darkening skies outside The Lego Car Blog’s skyscraper can mean only one of two things. 1) The Elves have opened an apocalyptic portal to Hades again or 2) it’s autumn and time to brace ourselves for various sci-fi themed building months. The TLCB editorial staff are renowned for our lack of comprehension of sci-fi. We would actually be more comfortable facing a hellish hoard, armed only with Mr. Airhorn (our Elvish research team is pretty hellish and we deal with them on a daily basis). However, we have a duty to our readers to bring you the best of what internet Lego has to offer. So we’re girding our loins and proudly present our SHIPtember 2015 Review. SHIPs tend to be long and pointy, but we thought that we’d focus on some of the more unusual SHIPs from this year’s Flickr thread.
At the top of this post is Pico van Grootveld’s massive EVE online custom Scorpion battleship. Coming in at 130 studs long by 120 wide and 70 tall, this SHIP is a real departure from the typical long & thin configuration. Click the link to see more photos of this monster, include one of Pico attempting to “swoosh” all 22lbs of it. Also going wide was Matt Bace with his Klingon D5 Deuterium Tanker. It’s unusual for us to feature a virtual build but the quality of the details on this SHIP, especially its wings, warrants its inclusion. From reading conversations on Flickr and MOCpages, Matt has also thought carefully about making his Klingon ship structurally sound, which can be lacking in some LDD models and Klingon starships too.
Bob Hayes went down the retro route with a SHIP right out of Dan Dare and covered in studs. Patrol Ship 014 comes complete with a crew of six minifigures, a cargo bay and one of the smoothest hulls in SHIPtember (Bob says that he thinks of studs as smooth, a bit like Nick Barrett does).
Looking like Blacktron’s version of Blake’s 7’s Liberator from Hell, Josh Derksen’s “Demon’s Maw” is an impressive piece of design and engineering. This SHIP is approximately 112 Studs long and 50 studs in diameter and contains two Power Functions XL motors, plus a load of lights from Brickstuff. It’s worth clicking this link to see the working star drive and appreciate the scale of this build.
Possibly the most graceful SHIP in this year’s collection was Michael Steindl’s “Mikajo”. Michael used brick-bending type techniques to create the compound curves of his SHIP’s wing in just three days. This was a real contrast to his other SHIPtember build, a huge, thuggish Blacktron Missile Boat.
Lastly, TLCB regular F@bz, came up with this eye-catching use for all of those brick separators that accumulate at the back of your Lego collection. His Juuken Spaceship was built in a day a features 36 of the orange tools.
We thought that we’d finish this post with a contrast to the SHIPs with their thousands of bricks. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again on this blog: it’s not how many bricks you use but how you chose to use them that counts. Featured below is Simply Bricking It’s “Shiptober”.
One of The Lego Car Blog’s very favourite builders has taken the brave – and often envied – step into the world of professional Lego model making. Certified LEGO Professionals Bright Bricks can now count the ridiculously talented Nick Barrett amongst their building staff. Nick joined the Bright Bricks team bringing a wealth of vehicular knowledge, which they’ve put to excellent use in their latest commissioned project, ‘Bricks in Motion’.
Bricks in Motion is taking place at the Milestones Museum in Hampshire, UK until the end of April 2015, featuring many creations by Nick, as well as few other builders including regular bloggee Ralph Savelsberg.
Nick’s creations include working vehicles commonly seen in the UK, such as this Mercedes ambulance (above), and JCB (below)…
…as well as themed creations from around the world, like these brilliant Lego taxis.
There are also a few nods to some of the most important vehicles of history, including famous ships and trains, such as the widely recognised pioneer of steam travel, Stephenson’s Rocket.
There’s lots more to see at Nick’s MOCpages account and you can see what’s on at the Bricks in Motion exhibition – including their children’s building activities and Mindstorms robotic workshops – via the link in the text above.
If you think that becoming a professional Lego model maker might be for you, then you can read our interviews with some of those who have gone pro by clicking this link to our Interviews page.
One of the best ideas of last year is back. It’s the ‘Fifteen Piece Vehicle Challenge’ on MOCpages. That’s right. Fifteen. One-Five. It’s an amazing test of creativity and pure, simple fun. Just ask Tom Remy, last year’s winner with this:
A Beautiful Way to Travel, so long as you don’t mind where you’re going…
If you think you can match that, head on over to Sam the First’s group on MOCpages and get building. Three weeks to combine fifteen pieces of Lego should be plenty of time, and even the Elves can scrape together the necessary plastic. It’s informal, it’s fun, it’s open to everybody, and it’s even well organized. Can you tell that we like it? Get over there!
Here at The Lego Car Blog our attitude to sci-fi is like our attitude to art: we don’t much about it but we know what we like. We’ve done quite well recently, having blogged both the first and second place winners in the third ever Classic Space Pocket Money Contest, well before the results were announced. The third place build was a spacey golf course in LDD, which didn’t really meet our submission guidelines, so we’ve an excuse for missing that one.
The Elves’ favourite was Locutus 666’s Rapid Reconnaissance Rover, an impressively large machine built from less than 100 pieces. Equipped with two cockpits and big wheels for high-speed rolling across the office floor, this vehicle kept our diminutive workforce entertained for a long time. Then they discovered that it’s a modular build, which can be quickly swapped into various configurations. That’s when the fighting started…
Regardless of this, we’re feeling a bit more confident about our sci-fi expertise, especially when things have wheels on. We’ll be watching this year’s Febrovery Flickr festival with interest.
The very wonderful Classic Space Pocket Money Contest is running for a third year on MOCPages. We’re very excited by this, and not just because it gives us an excuse to build something elf-sized and fire it into space…
All you have to do is come up with a 100-piece (or less) set in any of the classic space colour schemes and build alternates using the same pieces. It’s a fun challenge and there’s even prizes! Although you’ll be going some to beat Stephan N‘s entry above, which is designed to supply to our smiling vintage friends plenty of the white stuff (no, not THAT white stuff.) Time to dust off the (old) grey and blue…
The Classic Space Pocket Money Contest is open for entries until January 13th.
Here at TLCB we rarely get to LEGO Events. This is mostly because the Elves have a habit of sneaking into our bags and that doesn’t tend to end well in public spaces. Luckily for us though we have some lovely people amongst our readership who can attend on our behalf. One such reader is previous bloggee Chris Elliott, who recently attended (and displayed at) Brickfair 2014. Over to Chris to take us through what was there…
Hi! I’m Chris, and I’m honored to be back again guest-blogging for TLCB! Today I’m writing a recap of Brickfair New Jersey 2014 from the perspective of a car guy. Brickfair NJ is a relatively large event, and in 2014 there were several really good vehicle displays to be enjoyed by the car connoisseur. First, I should probably disclose that I was there displaying as well! If you’re interested, you can find me on Flickr for more of my work with minifig-scale cars.
ChrisElliottArt’s (hey, that’s me!) car display
We’ll start start things off in one of the most popular scales at Lego Shows, with I Lug NY‘s superb mini-figure Town display. This featured a whole host of realistic city scenes accompanied by an assortment of top Town vehicles. In no particular order…
Emergency Response Team responding to a fire at the Safety Inc. building
Prison Transport transporting, I assume, prisoners (though I’ve been wrong before)
A pair of squad cars
Avenue full of vehicles, and a few trains too
There were a couple of real gems hiding in this display (I’m sure you don’t need me to identify them for you but I will anyway, because that’s my job!). Here are a few highlights;
We’ve not blogged a Lego event for a while, so today we put that right by linking you to the awesome Truck Trial movement, pioneered by the Lego Users Group in Poland. LUGPol recently hosted their first round of the 2013 Championship in Warsaw.
Truck Trial is a real life event in which beautifully modified trucks attempt to climb, traverse and descend around a fiendishly difficult off-road course. Like Motorbike Trials, the aim is to complete the course in the quickest time. Penalties are given for course infringements such as missing gates or getting stuck.
Lego Truck Trial follows these rules, and adds in a few brick-related ones too. These include each truck requiring a complete cabin, on-board power supply through standard AA batteries, a working piston engine, and no more than two LEGO motors for drive.
The courses in Lego Truck Trial may be considerably smaller than those used in the real events, but they are no less difficult. This leads to some epic driving skills and, when these fail, some hugely destructive crashes!
Today we’re pleased to bring you a MOC Special. One of our favourite Town builders, whose creations we’ve featured a few times here before, has pulled together all of his MOCs into one incredible Town-style layout. Set in 1959, Henrik Hoexbroe’s masterpiece includes some simply beautiful small-scale Americana, including Checker Taxis, Greyhound Buses, finned Cadillacs and countless other classic vehicles. Not only that, he’s set in them all in a living world of plastic, complete with diners, cinema, parks, a used car lot… there is is literally too much for us to pick out here.
The whole set-up was recently displayed at the HispaLUG Expo 2012 in Barcelona, and you can see the full gallery of pictures showing the complete scene in detail by visiting Henrik’s MOCpage at the link above. See how many previous blog posts you can find! Congratulations Henrik, from all at The Lego Car Blog!
See the full gallery of fantastic photographs at the link in the text.