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.
Redfern1950s has given himself a lift. Published here earlier in the month, we titled Red’s rat rodded school bus after the name your Mom used ‘professionally’, and – just like your Mom – Red’s recently enhanced things to make them a whole lot more… noticeable. Jacked suspension and comically enormous tyres complete the look and there’s more to see of Red’s enhanced Busty Rusty on Flickr here.
Coincidentally the name your Mom had when your Dad first met her at the bar where she worked, and also today’s title, befitting this glorious rat rodded school bus by previous bloggee and Master MOCer Redfern1950s (aka red 2).
With an exposed Cummins diesel up front and a roof-chop the length of the seating area this probably isn’t as comfortable transport as it once was, but kids are short and who wouldn’t want to go to school in this?
There’s more to see of Red’s brilliant creation on Flickr via the link above, plus you can read how he builds models like this one via his Master MOCers interview by clicking here.
Featuring working steering, suspension (cleverly re-using the donor set’s rubber pieces), a working rear-mounted V6 engine, and mechanically operated opening doors, Davide’s 42098 alternate is both unusual and brilliant. Davide has also made building instructions available too, so you convert your own 42098 set into this bus at home. Click here to head to Flickr to find out more!
These Classic Spacemen are off to work, doing important jobs holding strange pieces of equipment close to the ground. They must enjoy it too, as you’ll never find a Classic Spaceman who isn’t smiling! Even their ride to work is a happy one, as shown here by Jerac and his simply marvellous Classic Space Bus. An opening door, vintage Technic wheels, and the obligatory satellite dish and giant spacey aerial all feature and you can hop on board (as long as you’re smiling) via the link above!
If you’re going to catch a bug, it may as well be as big one. Flickr’s Vince_Toulous owns the mind behind this ‘Myriapodobus’, which is complete with a lavish interior and a great many legs. With the passengers all having caught it there’s no need for them to enact ‘social distancing’ so they can have a chat over a drink from the bar-segment. That said, as no one really likes sitting next to one another on the bus, letting alone talking to fellow passengers, we’re not sure Coronavirus has made any discernible difference to public transport etiquette. Catch Vince’s bug for yourself via the link above.
The Speed Champions line-up may be filled with fast and exotic vehicles, but none of them can carry twenty-five mini-figures at once. The Eleventh Bricks‘ ‘Rapid Bus KL’ can though, being a neat Speed Champions scale replica of one of Kuala Lumpur’s city buses. Accurate decals and LED lighting adds to the already impressive realism and you can hop on board yourself via the link above.
In April of 1992 a young man by the name Christopher McCandless set out across Alaska on foot. With minimal supplies, a rifle, and a new alter ego (Alex Supertramp), McCandless left civilisation behind to live simply off the land in Alaska’s remote wilderness.
After hiking along the snow-covered ‘Stampede Trail’, McCandless discovered the old Fairbanks Bus 142, a 1946 International Harvester K-5 that was one of several that had been outfitted as shelters for a construction crew repairing the trail in the early 1960s.
When the mine that used the trail closed in the 1970s the buses were removed, all apart from Bus 142 which – thanks to a broken axle – was left behind in the wilderness. Already fitted with beds and a wood burning stove, it became McCandless’s new home.
McCandless attempted to leave the area in which the bus was abandoned several times, but the thick Alaskan undergrowth and swollen rivers made progress impossible, and so he returned, trapped in the shelter.
After 113 days, and weighing just 30kg, McCandless died of starvation and poisoning from wild potato seeds, his final diary entry on day 107 simply reading “Beautiful Blue Berries”. Days 108 to 112 contained only unintelligible slashes, whilst day 113 contained nothing at all.
Two weeks later a group of hunters entered Bus 142 looking for shelter, and discovered McCandless’ decomposing body inside a sleeping bag.
McCandless’ tragic story has since become a book and a movie, and the bus – deteriorating more each year – is now an attraction for Alaskan tourists. This beautiful recreation of the International Harvester that became Chris McCandless’ tomb comes from TLCB favourite and Master MOCer Andrea Lattanzio (aka Norton74), of which there is more to see at his ‘Into the Wild’ album on Flickr. Click the link above to take a trip to the wilderness around Fairbanks Bus 142. Just don’t eat the wild potato seeds.
We’re often asked why we don’t publicise more digital creations. The answer is most of them don’t look like this. Well, we don’t mean they’re not a Škoda 14TrM trollybus (although it is lovely), but this is the quality we need to be able to blog a rendered model. It comes from aaref1ev of Flickr who lives near to where these buses were built by Škoda under license during the late ’90s. Superbly well detailed, aaref1ev’s Škoda 14TrM has been rendered beautifully by liz_dewitt and there’s more to see of this digital delight at aaref1ev’s photostream via the link above.
TLCB Elves don’t usually get excited about buses. They have no racing stripes, lasers, or supercharging, and such things are important to an Elf. TLCB Team do sometimes get excited about buses – because we’re a bit sad – but not bendy buses, which were introduced to the streets of our capital a decade or so ago whereupon they proceeded to run over cyclists and then get stuck on every tight corner.
Now removed, we’re back to double deckers, but that doesn’t mean the bendy-bus isn’t a good solution for more modern cities. It’s also a design, in the case of today’s creation anyway, that’s really cool. And yes we did just write that about a bus.
This is Sariel‘s Solaris Urbino 18, a remote controlled, five-motor engineering triumph. Looking almost exactly like the real deal, Sariel has managed to squeeze a spectacular array of working functions inside the Urbino’s shell. Firstly the bus drives and steers remotely, thanks to LEGO Power Functions motors and a third-part SBrick programmable bluetooth receiver. This SBrick also allows the bus’s head, tail, brake and indicator lights to be controlled, plus the ingenious motorised door opening mechanism with all doors powered by a single Medium motor.
Most cleverly of all there is a working ‘kneel’ system, where – just like the real bus – the ride height drops as the doors open to allow easier access for passengers to embark/disembark.
Lastly the model features accurate custom decals to replicate those of the real vehicle, illuminated numbers, and some seriously impressive working dot matrix displays thanks to a custom design by third-party specialists Brickstuff.
Sariel’s amazing creation is a great way to round out the year and you can see more of his Solaris Urbino 18 at both his Flickr album and via the Eurobricks discussion forum, where you can also find a video demonstrating the model’s incredible working features.
Confession time. This TLCB writer has never played Fortnite. It’s like admitting you’ve never seen Pulp Fiction. Or read 1984. Both of which are much too old for Fortnite players to know what we’re on about.
Anyway, apparently within the online sensation a school-bus-hot-air-baloon exists for reasons we don’t understand and Flickr’s Wookieewarrior has chosen to recreate it in Lego form. A quick Google of the real deal revealed that not only has Wookiee nailed it, his version looks better than the the slightly ropey looking pixelated one in the game.
Head to Wookiee’s photostream via the link above to see more of the brick-built Battle Bus, whilst we listen to an Oasis CD, read a newspaper, or do whatever it is us old folks are supposed to be doing instead of playing Fortnite.
Public transport is a depressing place these days. Only inhabited by people staring zombie-like at the screens clutched in their claw-like hands, endlessly scrolling through mindless drivel and self-promotive imagery, without having a clue what lies outside the windows or if the old man two seats in front is having a heart attack. Still, talking of mindless drivel they could be reading The Lego Car Blog so it’s not all bad.
This is much more our thing though, a gorgeous 1959 Salem Ameriliner bus re-fitted as a travelling library, with over sixty mini-figure books, a gramophone, and probably containing more than a few hipsters. It’s the work of Chris Elliott and there’s more to see of his beautifully presented creation at his Flickr album – click the link above to hop on board and open a book.
Today, the day of American Independence, we remember what makes America great. It’s not its military, it’s not a flag, it’s not building walls, and it’s not all this stuff.
What makes America great is – in this writer’s mind – the greatness of all the countries that have built it. The British, the Irish, the French, the Dutch, the Italians, the Russians, and later the countless arrivals from Africa, Asia, Central America and the Middle East.
The same can be said for the greatest cars in history, products not just of their designer, but of a multitude of nations. Today we feature two, that without contributions from beyond their country of origin, would have been mere footnotes in automotive history.
First up (above); Bugatti, who were founded by an Italian living France, and are now owned by the Germans. The gorgeous model pictured above is a Type 37A from 1928, when the French Bugatti factory built the world’s finest racing cars thanks to Italian design, and there’s more to see courtesy of Pixeljunkie on Flickr.
Second (below); Volkswagen, who were rescued from the ashes of the Second World War by the British Army. In the 1950s the company expanded into Brasil, and have since built over 20 million vehicles there, starting with this – the Type 1 – in 1958, which became the best selling vehicle there for 24 years. The excellent homage to the Type 1 pictured below was suggested to us by a reader and comes courtesy of Ben of Flickr, who has built three variants of Volkswagen’s ever popular Transporter.
Both of today’s vehicles, and countless more besides, have flourished thanks to the welcoming arms of nations found far from their origins. We believe America is great because it has allowed greatness to live within it, regardless of where that greatness may have come from. Happy Independence Day.
It’s Valentines Day here at The Lego Car Blog Towers, but with only the Elves bringing us anything we may as well get straight down to some tenuously-linked Lego models!
This is ArsMan064‘s Technic school bus, which on the face of it has nothing to do with the day of love whatsoever, but the humble school bus has probably had more teenage bodily fluids secreted into it than any other vehicle. Gross.
It’s powered by a Medium Motor with a Servo for steering, and another Medium motor opens the cabin door electrically. There’s nifty leaf-sprung suspension and LED lights too. Relive your high-school conquests/regrets via Eurobricks at the link above.
This huge odd-looking device is a Suburban Tram, and it can give a ride to most of the town.** It comes from the mind of Flickr’s Vince Toulouse, who has deployed all manner of unusual pieces from several decades of LEGO themes to create it.
There’s lots more to see at the tram’s album on Flickr – click the link above to hop on-board, although we have no idea where it’s going.
*Today’s (slightly butchered) title song can be found here.