…is all you need to move yourself about. And – as anyone that’s familiar with transport methods in many Asian countries will know – not just yourself, but your spouse, children, family dog, and shop. All at once.
The Yamaha 70cc scooter is one of millions and millions that form the backbone of much of the world’s travel, and this 1974 example perfectly captures the simplicity of the real thing.
Built by Marco Gan of Flickr, just a handful of carefully chosen pieces have been used, some of which might be held together by magic.
Climb on board (along with three others, a box of live geese, and shop selling delicious snacks) via the link above, whilst we ready a rather marvellous building competition that celebrates vehicles just like this one…
LEGO’s town vehicles used to be rather narrow and upright, somewhat at odds with the squat mini-figures that drove them. Of course real vehicles used to be rather more narrow and upright than they are today too, as these days every vehicle seems to be ‘lower and wider’ than the one it replaces.
LEGO have also moved in this direction, presumably to more accurately reflect the cars we see on the roads, with Town (now City) vehicles a full 50% wider than they used to be.
This is the brand new 42130Technic BMW M 1000 RR, the largest motorcycle set LEGO have ever made, and perhaps the largest scale ever used for a vehicle too, at an enormous 1:5.
So, the awkward bit; 42130 will cost over $200.
Which is a lot. But then the real BMW M 1000 RR costs around $30,000, so that astronomical figure for a motorcycle is rather authentic.
What upwards of $200 gets you is 1,920 pieces, including some splendid new wheels, windshield and brake parts, ultra-realistic and suitably M-Sport coloured farings, working steering, front and rear suspension, a three-speed gearbox, and a four-cylinder piston engine.
Two display stands and a black ’18+’ box (plus that hefty price tag) mark the 42130 Technic BMW M 1000 RR set out as part of LEGO’s recently created ‘adult’ product line, and if you consider yourself one of those you can get your hands on it early next year.
It’s that time of year again! Yup, this year’s select group of Eleven ‘volunteers’ – fired over The LEGO Company’s perimeter wall by way of the office catapult – have started to return, and today we can share with you the first batch of their finds!
So here they are, the brand new for 2022 LEGO Technic sets (Part 1)…
We start at the smaller end of the Technic range with this, the rather lovely looking 42123 Chopper. Aimed at ages 7+ and with just 163 pieces, 42123 should make for an excellent pocket-money set, and we think it’s absolutely perfect.
In recent times many smaller Technic sets have been woefully lacking any Technicness whatsoever, but not 42123, which features steering, chain drive, and a miniature piston engine. It also looks great and there’s a B-Model too. Perhaps one of the best Technic starter sets in years.
42134 Monster Jam Megalodon
Aaaand cue the Pull-Backs, which have historically been utter garbage. However last years’ sets brought two Monster Jam licensed monster trucks to bedroom floors, and we thought they were rather good. They still had zero Technic functionality, but if you’re going to jump a Technic set over a book-based ramp it might as well be a monster truck.
Continuing the success of the 2021 Pull-Backs, LEGO are bringing another pair of Monster Jam trucks to the Technic line-up for 2022, the first being 42134 Megalodon. A good representation of the real truck, 42134 resembles a giant shark with wheels, and what’s not to like about that? 260 pieces, colourful stickers, a reasonable B-Model, and a pocket-money friendly price are all expected.
42135 El Toro Loco
El Toro Loco (the crazy bull) is 2022’s second Pull-Back, and whilst perhaps not quite as accurate to the real Monster Jam Truck as 42134, it still looks pretty good. And it’ll no doubt jump over a line of toy cars beautifully.
247 pieces, lots of stickerage, and a B-Model too make the continuing Monster Jam line of Pull-Backs the best of the genre by some margin. They may not be particularly Technicy, but you can’t fire any of the other LEGO sets into a group of unsuspecting Elves in quite the same way, and for that alone there’s merit.
42137 Formula E Porsche 99X Electric
Ah, this is awkward. After praising the Monster Jam monster trucks as the best Pull-Back sets, here’s er… another, better, Pull-Back set. Or is it?
The 42137 Formula E Porsche 99X is certainly a bigger, more complex set. With 422 pieces and aimed at ages 9+, the building experience will be more in-keeping with proper Technic sets, and it does looks fairly accurate – no doubt helped by the real-world racing sponsorship decals.
But should a 422-piece Technic set do nothing beyond being a Pull-Back? OK, there is a mechanism to release said motor once it’s been wound, but that’s it. No steering, no suspension, and – albeit realistically as this is a Formula E racer – no engine either.
What 42137 does offer is LEGO’s first attempt at augmented reality, in which the model can appear to be somewhere it’s not courtesy of an app.
Said app might be really cool in practice, but if the set using it has no other features, is it a Technic set at all? It’s a thumbs down from us.
42138 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500
Wait, what? Another one? LEGO must be really pleased with their new augmented reality feature…
The final set in Part 1 of our 2022 Technic preview is yet another Pull-Back, and another Ford Mustang, following the Speed Champions and Creator sets from past years.
This time it’s the latest Shelby GT500 variant that gets reborn in LEGO form, and it does look rather epic, particularly in lime green with racing stripes (although the sticker rear lights are rather lazy).
What’s considerably less epic is the feature-count, which – like the 42137 Formula E Porsche 99X – is limited to one; a pull-back motor with a mechanical release.
The augmented reality app may well be awesome, but a near 550-piece Technic set with just one working feature seems very weak to us. Perhaps we’re just getting old.
So there you have it, Part 1 of the 2022 LEGO Technic line-up, a new augmented reality app, and all but one set being a Pull-Back. We’ll take that little chopper motorcycle…
Once the only available gold LEGO pieces were, well… gold, but these days all manner of parts are available in the blingiest hue. We suspect not quite as many as ianying616‘s Ducati V4R Panigale utilises though.
Still, paint and decals or not, ianying’s Ducati looks absolutely magnificent in its golden colour scheme, and there’s loads more of it to see on Flickr at the link above, where there’s an even goldier motorcycle available if you’re Lil Jon.
3D printing has changed the way things are made forever. Prototypes, one-offs, and recreations of long-lost parts can now be produced at a fraction of their previous cost thanks to computer-aided-design and little plastic granules.
Inevitably we’re now seeing 3D printed pieces appear in Lego creations too, including this one by regular bloggee Horcik Designs. Horcik’s cafe racer motorcycle uses a (very cool looking ) 3D printed front brake disc, which fits perfectly to the front wheel.
Steering, suspension, a piston engine, and a foot-peg operated two-speed transmission also feature, with these all built from standard LEGO pieces.
With LEGO themselves regularly creating new and bespoke pieces for official sets, we’re taking the stance that a model using a custom part doesn’t preclude it from appearing here.
You can see more of Horcik’s cafe racer at both Bricksafe and Eurobricks, the latter of which shows another of his creations that’s has gone (quite a long way) further down the 3D printing route…
This wonderful creation is a KMZ-Dnepr K650, a Soviet Ukrainian motorcycle based on the 1930’s BMW R71. Whilst this version is 650cc, early bikes were fitted with a 98cc Wanderer engine design taken from Germany as part of reparations for World War 2, before KMZ’s own much larger 650cc was used for the rest of the design’s long production run.
Of course the BMW bit of the KMZ-Dnepr pre-dates war reparations, as the Soviet Union officially licensed the design from Germany before the two countries later went to war. In fact Germany and Russia held talks about becoming allies, with only Hitler’s ideological greed preventing Stalin from agreeing. Had they found common ground then this TLCB Writer would probably be typing this in German.
Fortunately Hitler and Stalin didn’t team up, and Germany invaded the Soviet Union just a year after the deal to license the BMW R71 was signed. This led – rather oddly – to the bike fighting on both sides of the conflict; the BMW version for the Axis Powers and the Soviet IMZ-Ural copy for Russia.
Production of the KMZ-Dnepr version shown here commenced in Ukraine in 1946, and continued right up to the fall of the Soviet Union, with both civilian and military versions produced. This beautifully presented replica of the KMZ-Dnepr K650 comes from KMbricklab, making their TLCB debut, and depicts the German-Russian-Ukrainian bike in both civilian and (awesome) military two-wheel-drive sidecar variants.
Gorgeous detailing and clever building techniques are evident in abundance and there’s lots more of KMbricklab’s superb build to see at their ‘KMZ-Dnepr K650’ album on Flickr. Click the link above to make the jump to Soviet-era Ukraine.
White LEGO bricks, like nerds, don’t particularly like strong sunlight.
The gradual yellowing of white pieces exposed to UV is subject to much debate within the nerdier corners online Lego community, from applying hydrogen peroxide to restore parts to their original hue, to – more nerdily – sealing bricks inside darkened rooms or even never taking them out of their box. Which is quite fantastically pointless.
Cue previous bloggee seb71, who has not only allowed his white pieces to yellow, he’s positively embraced their ageing.
Seb’s brilliant classic motorcycle deploys some properly yellowed Technic wheels, matching their sunlight-induced cream to a seventies-tastic brown and white aesthetic for a beautifully period-correct look.
There’s more of Seb’s well-tanned classic bike to see at his photostream, click the link above to take a look and then get out in the sun – it’s good for you and maybe even your LEGO bricks too.
Ah, the cafe in the bookstore; the place to go to meet attractive hipster girls whilst trying to look intelligent. “Yes I did enjoy ‘Infinite Jest’, although I found it strayed towards a wandering narrative in places… Can I buy you a coffee?”
Cue seb71‘s ‘cafe racer’ style motorcycle, which is pictured here on its own but forms part of some rather lovely bookends (see, it all makes sense).
Built for a challenge on a French forum (which if he isn’t French makes this so hipster it hurts), Seb’s motorcycle captures the ‘cafe racer’ style superbly, and there’s more to see of both it and the bookends of which it is part on Flickr.
Click the link above to take a look, and if you’re reading this in a bookstore cafe you can pretend you’re exploring the romanticism of classical transportation in France if you’re asked, before buying that attractive hipster girl a coffee.
You might think that a pair of handcuffs has only one use, whether that be in their deployment by law enforcement or during your Mom’s illicit activities. However previous bloggee Oscar Cederwall (o0ger) shows that even the most seemingly single-use of LEGO pieces can be utilised far beyond its original intended purpose.
By placing several dozen handcuff pieces in a loop Oscar has created a beautifully smooth hub-less wheel, with the ‘Nice Parts Usage’ (NPU) continuing to an upside-down Duplo train/plane cockpit, a fort stone archway, and even a Duplo Train ‘action brick’ forming the rear swing-arm.
There’s more of Oscar’s ‘Cyberpunk Bike’ and the ingenious parts placement within it to see on Flickr – click the link above to put on the ‘cuffs.
Every once in a while a creation appears at TLCB Towers that makes us all think ‘that’s clever’. This is one such model, plus it has the added benefit of terrifying TLCB Elves.
Eurobricks’ piterx has designed this Technic scrambler motorbike, which – whilst not special to look at – is incredible to behold in motion. LEGO’s most powerful motor drives the back wheel, which is controlled via bluetooth thanks to a third-party BuWizz battery.
Said battery not only delivers up to eight times the power of LEGO’s own system, it has been ingeniously used as a motorised sliding counterweight, enabling piterx’s bike to rocket around on its own, appearing to be under the spooky control of an invisible rider.
We’re having great fun terrorising the Elves with this, so whilst we continue the ghostly ruse on our smelly little workers you can check out more of piterx’s cunning remote control creation via the video and link to Eurobricks above!
We were going to title this post ‘Square Heads’, but upon Googling it we learned it’s an offensive term for German, Dutch or Scandinavian persons. That was close. The perils of being an international blog we suppose! Anyway, these micro-scale bikers do have square heads, but we’re going to say they’re American, so we’re alright. They come from Flickr’s jarekwally (who might need to Google his title too…), whose inventive parts usage doesn’t stop at riders’ heads, but continues to both the motorcycles and the road upon which they’re travelling. (Square) head to jarekwally‘s photostream for more!
Ninety-five year old Spanish motorcycle manufacturer Rieju make some great looking off-road mopeds. And so too does previous bloggee Mathjis Bongers, who has recreated their MRT PRO ‘motard’ in Technic form, complete with working suspension, steering, and a replica of the Rieju’s tiny 50cc engine, which likely makes a disproportionately loud noise in relation to the forward movement in provides. Mathjis’ version is therefore our preference, despite how cool the real thing looks, and there’s more to see at both his ‘Rieju MRT PRO‘ album and via the Eurobricks discussion here.