Tag Archives: 1960s

Summer of ’69*

LEGO’s new 10265 Ford Mustang set has us yearning for more officially-licensed muscle cars. There’s hope too, as this particular Detroit classic has already been released as a Speed Champions set. It is of course the stupendous ’69 Dodge Charger R/T, the wildest muscle car of the era, and one that’s become famous to whole new generation of fans thanks to the Fast and Furious movie franchise.

This brilliant recreation of Dodge’s over-powered, under-suspended icon is the work of previous bloggee Tony Bovkoon, who has built his Charger R/T to match the scale and detail of the official Ford Mustang set. Working steering, opening doors, hood, trunk, and a detailed interior all feature, and there’s more to see of this superb creation at Tony’s ’69 Dodge Charger R/T album on Flickr via the link above.

*Nope, we’re not doing a link to today’s title song, because any DJ** that ends the night by playing it needs to go have a quiet think about how they can do better.

**For our younger readers; a DJ is sort of like if your Spotify playlist were a person.

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Holy Guacamole Batman!

Batman may have been a bit… camper back in the ’60s, but Adam West was considerably more violent, at least if this Technic recreation of the ’66 Batmobile is anything to go by. Created by previous bloggee James Tillson it features working steering, a flame afterburner, a rocket launcher, and a ‘chain slicer’; basically a giant circular saw that appears out of the front like something from Robot Wars. That’ll leave a mark…

Head to James’ Flickr photostream or the Eurobricks discussion forum to see more.

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Ford Vs Ferrari

2019’s excellent and surprisingly moving film about the development of the Ford GT40 and the amazing men behind it was a joy to watch last year. Whilst the film did gloss over the fact that car isn’t really American at all, it did pay tribute to the unsung hero of its creation; Englishman Ken Miles, who was tragically killed during testing just a few short months after winning Le Mans.

The GT40 would go on to win the event multiple times and achieved success in numerous endurance races around the world during the 1960s. Built by previous bloggee James Tillson, this particular GT40 finished in second place at the 1967 12 Hours of Sebring, and has been recreated superbly in both digital and Technic-brick forms.

James’ GT40 features all-wheel independent suspension, a working V8 engine hooked up to a four-speed gearbox, functioning steering, and an opening clamshell front and rear. There’s more to see of James’ build in both digital and real-brick forms on Flickr, plus you can join the discussion at the Eurobricks forum by clicking these words, where there are also instructions available.

 

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Bullet the Blue Sky

This is the Lockheed U-2 ‘Dragon Lady’, an aircraft from the 1950s that is still in service today, flying on the edge of space. Designed for the Cold War, but carrying no weapons, the U-2 is able to operate at an altitude of over 70,000ft, taking photographs of the ground beneath it.

Believed to be out of range of ground-to-air missiles, the U-2 was flown extensively over the Soviet Union, supplying the United States with information on nuclear development, missile locations, and airbases.

Unfortunately for the U.S this theory proved inaccurate when, on May 1st 1960, a U-2 flown by Francis Gary Powers was successfully shot down. The Soviets had been tracking the aircraft from 15 miles outside of the border, and an indirect missile-hit brought the U-2 down, with Powers miraculously surviving.

The U.S didn’t believe that a pilot would survive a crash from 70,000ft and thus stuck to a pre-written cover story that the U-2 had drifted into Soviet airspace after the pilot became unresponsive. The Soviet Union cleverly let the U.S release their lie to the world before revealing that Powers was alive and had admitted spying under interrogation. Oops.

Powers spent a year and a half in prison before being swapped in a prisoner exchange at Glienicke Bridge between East and West Germany. He subsequently returned to the U-2 programme working for Lockheed before losing his life in a helicopter crash in 1977.

Amazingly though, the Lockheed U-2 is still in service today, with the United States Air Force taking over operations from the CIA. This splendid recreation of their incredible aircraft was constructed as a commission by Jonah Padberg (aka Plane Bricks) whose brilliant H145M rescue helicopter featured here earlier in the week.

Jonah’s model captures the iconic Cold War aircraft in stunning accuracy and there lots more to see of his superbly built and presented Lockheed U-2 spy plane at his photostream. Click the link above to fly to 70,000ft and take a look.

*Today’s excellent title song.

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Holiday Heroes II

Today’s earlier post remembers the heroes of the emergency services, who – unlike the underserving muppets here at TLCB – work over the holiday period keeping us alive. From the amazing National Health Service we enjoy in TLCB’s home nation to the fire, police, mountain rescue and lifeboat services that operate every day of the year, there are heroes in every town, village and street.

However one group that often gets forgotten, particularly in the current woke culture that sometimes attempts to undermine their existence, are the armed forces. They too work over the holidays, unseen, largely forgotten, and ready to protect us turkey-eating muppets on Christmas Day as they would on any other.

This find is one example of that group, the Canadian Armed Forces’ very cool looking Lockheed F-104 ‘Starfighter’ in ‘Red Indian’ Squadron markings. Part of NATO, these F-104s operated out of 421 Squadron in West Germany during the Cold War, following their introduction by the Canadian Air Force two decades earlier.

This superb replica of the CAF Lockheed F-104 ‘Starfighter’ is the work of Flickr’s John C. Lamarck and it captures the iconic aircraft (and its unusual CAF ‘toothbrush’ colour scheme) beautifully. There’s more of the build to see at John’s photostream and you can head to an airbase in West Germany c1983 via the link above.

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Back in the USSR*

This is a BRDM-2, which might sound like something from your Mom’s internet browser history, but is in fact an amphibious armoured car built by the USSR between 1962 and 1989, and which is still in production in Poland today. Powered by a 140bhp GAZ V8 the BRDM-2 is capable of around 60mph on roads and a heady 6mph on water, when the engine drives a water-jet.

Like the MiG-29 we featured here earlier in the week the BRDM-2 was exported extensively, and is now in use on both sides of some conflicts, most recently between Russia and Ukraine.

This marvellous Technic recreation of one the Soviet Union’s most interesting vehicles was discovered by one of our Elves on Eurorbricks. Built by newcomer Danifill it packs in all the working functions of the real BRDM-2, besides the ability to float.

Two Power Functions XL motors deliver power to the four-wheel-drive system whilst an L motor drives the steering. All wheels are suspended, there are LED lights front and rear, and turret rotation is motorised too, with a third-party BuWizz bluetooth battery delivering eight times the power of LEGO’s own system plus bluetooth remote control.

There’s more to see of Danifill’s brilliant BRDM-2 build at the Eurobricks forum where you can also find a link to a video of the model in action. Click the link above to head back to the USSR.

*Today’s excellent title song.

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Cache of Classics

We have a bumper haul for you today! These wonderful classic creations all come from previous bloggee Jonathan Elliott, who has turned his considerable talents to building a range of beautifully photographed and presented vehicles spanning four decades.

From a Fiat Abarth 1000TC (top) via a 1950s panel van (below), a gorgeous 1960s supercar (above), and finally a superb replica of the iconic 1980s Audi quattro (bottom), each has been created using a wide variety of brilliant building techniques and some stunning attention to detail.

There’s more to see of each of Jonathan’s builds featured here, plus a loads more 6-wide vehicles that form his ace back-catalogue, by visiting his photostream on Flickr. Click the link above to take a closer look at the Abarth, ’50s van, ’60s supercar and Audi quattro and much more besides.

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Beating Ferrari

The excellent looking Le Mans ’66 (Ford vs. Ferrari) movie is in theatres now, and tells the story of one of the greatest (and most unlikely) racing rivalries in history. Ford, annoyed at having their offer to purchase Ferrari snubbed, decided to build a car to beat the Italians at their own game. Cue a story of American heroism, engineering brilliance, and underdog victory. Except the Ford GT40 was actually British…

No matter, it is a great story, and this lovely digital Ford GT40 road car captures the legendary American British endurance racer wonderfully. It comes from cshowd of Flickr who is in the midst of building it for real and there’s more to see at his photostream. Head back to 1966 and conquer Ferrari via the link above.

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Plus Two

LEGO’s Speed Champions range has recently expanded. Not just in number, like your Mom’s list of past boyfriends, but in girth, just like your Mom. As revealed here last month the new Speed Champions sets have adopted increased dimensions, going from from six studs in width to eight. This brings with it an increased level of realism as well as the ability for two mini-figures to fit side-by-side.

One of LEGO’s previous Speed Champions sets, the 75884 Ford Mustang, now looks a little thin by comparison, so Joao Campos of MOCpages has given it a thorough update to match the new 8-wide Speed Champions scale.

Suggested by a reader, Joao’s classic Ford Mustang Fastback looks every bit as good as LEGO’s latest Speed Champions releases, and whole lot better than the already decent official set (which you can see pictured alongside it in the images above)

With only 230 parts Joao’s Mustang also looks to be an easy recreation for other builders to try, particularly those that own the official 75884 set already. Head to Joao’s Ford Mustang page on MOCpages to see the complete gallery of images.

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Virtually Real

The new LEGO Technic 42110 Land Rover Defender set may be getting all the attention right now, but it has us yearning for a proper Land Rover. This is one such vehicle, from back before the Defender was called the Defender. It is in fact simply known as the Land Rover Series 2A, and is shown here in 109 pick-up form courtesy of John O’Shea of Flickr.

John’s Land Rover Series 2A might be digital, but it’s also absolutely gorgeous, and very probably the most accurate Lego Land Rover design we’ve seen yet. He’s even built an ultra rare Cuthbertson tracked variant, sold in the ’60s by a Scottish engineering firm to allow the Land Rover go even further off-road. Head into the unknown (virtually) at John’s Land Rover Series 2A album via the link above.

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Lego Landies

The new 42110 Technic Land Rover Defender set has got us all wishing LEGO had made the original Defender instead. Or, better yet, from before the Defender was called the Defender, and simply known as a Land Rover.

This trio of pre-Defender Land Rovers comes from previous bloggee Vibor Cavor who has constructed his models in a delightfully simple style that befits a delightfully simple vehicle. They also hark back to when LEGO sets were a whole lot more simple too, and – sometimes – all the better for it. Which reminds us of a certain new Land Rover again…

There’s more to see of Vibor’s lovely classic Land Rovers in 110 pick-up, 90 Red Cross, and expedition specifications at his photostream. Click the link above to see more.

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SEMA

Founded in 1963, the Specialty Equipment Market Association, or SEMA, has become a giant of the automotive landscape. The annual SEMA show in Las Vegas is now one of the largest automotive events non the planet, attended not just be tuning companies but also by mainstream auto manufacturers, who are embracing a culture that can help their brand image.

Previous bloggee Simon Przepiorka has decided to build a Lego homage to the upcoming SEMA show, taking the official 10265 Ford Mustang set as a base and reworking it to achieve the awesome looking wide-body Mustang you see here. Such an approach is perfectly in keeping with SEMA, where standard manufacturer products are modified to often wild extremes, these days occasionally by the actual company that made them in the first place.

We think Simon’s modified Mustang looks spectacular and there’s more to see at his photostream via the link above, plus you can take a look at some of the good, weird, and frankly awful vehicles from last year’s SEMA show by clicking here.

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Mellow Yellow

It’s a small scale day here at The Lego Car Blog. Previous bloggee Tim Henderson proves you don’t need a billion bricks to build something deeply cool. See more of his 6-wide ’60s sedan on Flickr via the link.

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Build a LEGO Mustang | Book Review

Lego-building legend Sariel has appeared here multiple times over the years. He’s part our our ‘Become a Pro‘ series, is the author of some excellent Lego books, and his beautiful fully remote controlled Mustang GT350 is one of the the finest models we’ve ever published.

Today we’re privileged to share a piece of work that combines all three of the areas above, as the awesome guys at No Starch Press sent us a copy of their new book written by Sariel; ‘Build a LEGO Mustang‘. And not just any Mustang either, it’s the same glorious 1960s GT350 fastback that first appeared here almost two years ago, with remote control drive and steering, LED lights, a 2-speed transmission, opening doors, hood and trunk, and a V8 engine. So, what’s it like?

Firstly, as with all the No Starch Press Lego products we’ve reviewed, ‘Build a Lego Mustang’ is a very well published book. High quality, glossy, and with excellent full colour imagery throughout. Unlike previous publications though, ‘Build a Lego Mustang’ is not coffee table art, a Lego history, or varied model showcase. Instead it’s an instruction manual, detailing the 420 steps required to recreate Sariel’s Mustang masterpiece.

Running to 110 pages, Sariel’s book provides the building process to create his amazing Ford Mustang GT350 for yourself, using a presentation and process that will be familiar to anyone who has built an official LEGO set. Like LEGO’s own instructions, ‘Build a Lego Mustang’ includes a complete parts inventory at the start, followed by the traditional ‘spot the difference’ steps that turn a pile of bricks into a complete model. Continue reading

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Speed Communists

We continue the small-scale theme with this, László Torma‘s ace Speed Champions scale Trabant 601. An unlikely race car, László’s Trabant uses a be-stickered curved brick for the doors which he kept because his son said they were cool (the Elves agree by the way), and thus the Trabbi has a slightly more sporting nature than was originally intended. Clever techniques have been used throughout the build to recreate the communist car’s famous shape and there’s more to see of László’s 601 in both race and road car specification on Flickr – click the link above to take a look.

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