Tag Archives: bike

Steam Powered Velocipede

The current craze for e-bikes shows that mankind’s propensity to make literally everything lazier continues unabated. However we’re not new in our quest to eradicate all forms of exercise, as back in the late 1800s our forebears had the same idea, first creating the ‘steam powered velocipede‘ which we want based upon its name alone, and later strapping a steam engine to a penny farthing, to eliminate all that inconvenient pedalling. Remarkably they worked too.

Cue TLCB Master MOCer and all-round Technic-building genius Nico71, who has created his own ‘steam’ powered bicycle (or velocipede as we shall now call it), equipped with a single cylinder Lego Pneumatic Engine, that – when fed with ‘steam’ (compressed air) – powers the velocipede through a two speed gearbox.

Every element of Nico’s machine is LEGO, including an ingenious design that genuinely ‘throttles’ the amount of air entering the engine controlled via a handlebar-mounted lever, a flywheel for maintaining the engine’s smoothness, and a working rear brake.

It’s all preposterously clever and best of all Nico has made instructions available so that you can build you very own Steam Powered Velocipede at home, which we genuinely might do! Head to Brickshelf to see all the imagery, Nico’s excellent website for full details and building instructions, and you can watch this remarkable contraption in action via the video below.

YouTube Video

 

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Shafted

Motorbikes, like pedal bikes, tend to use a chain to transfer power from the engine to the rear wheel. However they’re usually (but not always) slightly more powerful than the average human, so the chain is often the weak point. Plus it can eat trouser legs and flick oil all over the place, thus the shaft-drive was developed.

Working in the same way a car’s driveline does, the chain is replaced by a rotating shaft and a gear assembly, which makes a shaft-drive more expensive and heavier than a chain, but better in pretty much every other respect. Plus it sounds a bit rude.

Flickr’s František Hajdekr has chosen the latter option for his Technic BMW-esque motorcycle, a brand that has used shaft-drive designs for much of their range (including the R 1200 GS Adventure immortalised in the ace 42063 Technic set). Working steering, rear suspension, and a seat made from Batman’s chest also feature, and you can see more of František’s shaft-driven bike at his photostream via the link.

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Containment

Containers are just big boring boxes right?… Er, yes actually. They really are. But what’s inside them can be very interesting indeed. Motorcycles, exotic fruits, LEGO sets, illegal immigrants… the list is endless. All make the world a more interesting place, and pretty much anything in your home that’s come from abroad will have arrived in one of these.

The vehicles that move them about can be pretty interesting too, from the trains and trucks that transport them on land to dockside cranes and giant container ships that bring them to the shores for which they are bound.

It’s these that builder ExeSandbox has digitally created for us here, with this enormous 100,000 peice container terminal that would measure 6ft wide if it were built for real. Spectacular detailing is in evidence everywhere and there much of Exe’s amazing scene to see at his ‘Tour at the Container Terminal’ album on Flickr.

Click the link above for a lot of big boring boxes making up a creation that’s really rather interesting indeed.

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Panigale Pieces

LEGO have a history of making incredible life-size replicas of both real-world vehicles and their own sets. This is their latest creation, and it’s a little different…

LEGO’s new 42107 Technic Ducati Panigale V4 R set joined the range earlier his year, and to celebrate the two firms’ collaboration they have worked together to create this; a fully working Ducati Panigale V4 R with a faring built entirely from LEGO Technic beams and pins, with no glue, no supporting structure, and no CAD.

Certified LEGO Professional Riccardo Zangelmi spent 400 hours creating the Ducati’s brick-built faring, using an estimated 15,000 Technic parts. The completed motorbike weighs 180kg (that’s the LEGO bricks and the real Ducati Panigale platform underneath them), and was unveiled at the Modena circuit in Italy by Ducati MotoGP rider Andrea Dovizioso.

It’s quite a cool looking experiment, and if you’d like to read more about the official 42107 Ducati Panigale V4 R set, LEGO’s first collaboration with Ducati, you can check out our set preview via the link in the text above.

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Chop Shop

This beautiful chopper motorcycle workshop comes from yesterday’s bloggee Faber Mandragore, who’s becoming a regular here at TLCB. Fantastic attention to detail is in abundance, both in the garage and the brick-built custom chopper, and you can take a closer look on Flickr via the link.

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Ghost Rider

A film about a flaming motorcycle and little else, Ghost Rider is up there as one of the worst Nicholas Cage films in recent memory. And there are so many. Drive Angry, Outcast, Rage, Season of the Witch, Left Behind… they make us want to push his flaming motorcycle over in disgust at crimes against cinema. Fortunately that’s just what the contestants in the Lego Masters Australia TV show got to do with this incredible life-size motorbike by certified LEGO Professional Ryan McNaught and his team of builders.

Built from over 75,000 LEGO bricks, and with its hollow interior filled with loads more loose parts like some sort of brick-based piñata, the bike was smashed to provide pieces for an episode in the second season of the Australian version of the Lego Masters show entitled ‘Smash & Grab’. We suspect its destruction took a lot less than the 135 hours it took to build it, but that it made for great TV!

There’s more to see of Ryan’s life-size Lego motorbike on Flickr via the link above, and if you’re a German-speaking reader the Lego Masters show is looking for contestants for the German version right now! Click here to read about how to apply and maybe even score a TLCB Recommendation. For our non-German speaking readers (which will be most of you!), don’t worry – you can learn how to become a Lego professional via our aptly named ‘How to Become a Lego Professional’ series – click here to see how some of the bloggees here at TLCB  have done it!

YouTube Video

 

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Bike on Track

This is a Fritz Riemerschmid Gleiskettenkrad (which we can assure you that we pronounced flawlessly in TLCB Office so you can too as you’re reading this), a 1930s BMW R12-based tracked motorcycle that was designed to drive on snow. In straight lines only presumably.

Built by previous bloggee Nikolaus Lowe, who seems to have a penchant for odd vintage machinery, this marvellous Model Team recreation includes a sidecar, a working two-cylinder engine with functioning gearbox, and something purporting to be steering.

There’s much more to see at Nikolaus’ ‘Fritz Riemerschmid Gleiskettenkrad’ album – click the link above to head over. In a straight line.

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Forty Eight

This beautiful (and beautifully presented) Harley Davidson Forty Eight was discovered by one our Elves on Flickr today. Superbly recreated and photographed on a matching monochrome background (FLAVIO) has created some of the finest Lego imagery we’ve featured this year. Head to (FLAVIO)’s photostream via the link above to see more.

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Mini-Moto

Square, slow, and frankly a little odd-looking, your Mom and the Honda Motocompo scooter have much in common. Apart from size that is, as this miniature motorcycle could fit inside even the trunk of Honda’s smallest car.

Built by TLCB regular ianying616, this neat (and wonderfully presented) Model Team recreation of the Motocompo almost perfectly captures the original bike, assisted by accurate decals and a few ingenious building techniques.

Take a closer look at ianying’s ‘Honda Motocompo’ album on Flickr via the link above.

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Xích Lô

The first Vietnamese Grand Prix was due to take place this year. Sadly it, along with most other sporting events, has been cancelled due to Coronavirus, although it did seem a slightly odd choice for a Formula 1 venue. With much of the population using bicycles or mopeds to move about, a Formula 1 car must have felt like a world away. But maybe that was the point.

This is a far more common Vietnamese vehicle, the humble Xích Lô pedal rickshaw, complete with a foldable canopy and a comfy rear-facing chair. This incredible Lego version comes from Hoang H Dang (aka Know Your Pieces) who has deployed a simply breath-taking array of ingenious building techniques to recreate Vietnam’s taxi. From the wheels to roof, the frame to the tree, Hoang has used a fantastically intricate combination of tubes and clips to create his Xích Lô and you can see more of his stunning build at his photostream via the link above.

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Not Even Wensleydale?

1995’s Oscar winning ‘A Close Shave’ was the third instalment in the wonderful ‘Wallace & Gromit’ series, and it brought Shaun the Sheep to screens for the first time, a clay animal who’s now possibly more famous than the duo that uncovered him.

The movie also featured a rather brilliant chase scene, with Wallace & Gromit in their trusty motorcycle and sidecar fitted with a few choice modifications.

Recreating the famous motorbike is grubaluk of Flickr, who has rebuilt both the bike and characters wonderfully from Lego bricks. That’s not all though, as like Wallace’s bike in the movie, grubaluk’s model has a few secrets hidden inside, chiefly one of the most brilliant remote control systems we’ve ever seen.

Watch the video below to find out why, and you can see all the images at grubalek’s photostream via the link above.

YouTube Video

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Super Cub

The most important vehicle ever produced is not a Bugatti Veyron. Nor a Volkswagen Beetle, nor a Ford Model T, nor even the Benz Patent Motor Car. It’s this, the humble Honda Super Cub 50. Because well over 100million of them have been made since 1958, making it the greatest mover of the people in history.

This beautiful Technic recreation of Honda’s four-stroke underbone motorcycle comes from Khang Huynh of Flickr and features a working kick-stand, steering, and rear suspension, making it very nearly as well-equipped as the real thing.

Khang’s Super Cub is superbly presented too, and there’s more to see of his wonderful creation at his photostream – join 100million riders via the link above.

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Acceptable in the ’80s

Some things were acceptable in the ’80s. Perms. Sexism. Straight lines. And turbos. Everything had the word ‘turbo’ written on it, even sunglasses. However the Honda City Turbo II did actually have a turbo attached to its little 1,200cc engine, giving it 100bhp. Nearly.

It was also designed entirely using straight lines, as was the minute Honda Motocompo folding scooter, a vehicle so small it could actually fit in the trunk of the City Turbo II, as proven in this magnificent ’80s commercial.

Despite being borne in the ’80s the Motocompo didn’t have a turbo, producing just 2.5bhp from its 49cc engine. Still, we bet even that was pretty terrifying. We’ll stick to the City Turbo II, which we’ve decided we really want in real life. But we are a bit odd.

These superb Model Team recreations of both the Honda City Turbo II and Motocompo scooter come from Dylan Denton, who has built each ’80s icon beautifully. Both models feature wonderful attention to detail (enhanced by accurately replicated decals) inside and out, and are absolutely worth a closer look.

Head to Tokyo c1983 courtesy of Dylan’s photostream via the link in the text above!

*Today’s title song

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Life-Size Britten V1000 Motorcycle

New Zealand doesn’t have much of an indigenous vehicle industry, but it’s a country that does love racing, and in the 1990s a small team from Christchurch formed a company and decided to build their own racing motorcycle. And it was incredible.

The Britten V1000 became one of the greatest racing motorbike designs of all time, pioneering carbon fibre extensively (this is before the McLaren F1), double wishbone front suspension, a frameless chassis, and even engine data logging.

Ten V1000s were produced, with the bike setting multiple speed and race records during the 1990s, including the highest top speed at the Isle of Man TT in 1993 and the fastest standing start mile under 1000cc, at over 200mph.

It’s quite a machine then, and so when certified LEGO Professional Ryan McNaught and his team of model makers were commissioned to build something for an Aukland-based client they chose to build this Kiwi icon of racing.

An exact 1:1 scale replica of one of the ten real Britten V1000s motorbikes, Ryan (aka The Brickman) and his team have used LEGO pieces to recreate every aspect of the record-setting bike, including the fantastically intricate exhaust and rear shock springs that make our head hurt just looking at them.

This amazing build will go on display at Toyco 2020 in New Zealand, so if you’re reading this from Aukland go and check it out! For the rest of our readers you can head to Ryan McNaught’s ‘Britten V-1000’ Flickr album to see more of this spectacular life-size replica.

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Confederate Chrome

This is the Confederate R-131 Fighter, and it is really very shiny indeed. The real bike achieves this through unpainted aluminium, whilst Flickr’s ianying616 has had to use more chrome than a fifties Cadillac. Either way, it’s not a vehicle we’d want to leave out in the sun and then sit upon. Don your sunglasses and head to ianying’s photostream via the link above to see more of the shiniest motorcycle ever made.

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