It’s 1969, Man has landed on the moon, the Jumbo Jet makes its debut, and Woodstock hosts 350,000 spectators at the greatest musical festival the world has ever known. Things couldn’t get any cooler. And indeed they didn’t, as the era of free love ended almost as precisely as the decade did, the oil crisis hit, the world went on strike, and everything became a shade of beige or brown.
Hot Wheels ended the decade on a high too though, with their spectacular concept ‘Splittin’ Image’, recreated here in beautiful accuracy by TLCB favourite Lino Martins, complete with oversize engine and twin canopies.
A little over fifty years later and history seems to be repeating itself, with the world spiralling towards some kind of bleak apocalypse, factories shut, hospitals full, and even brown making a comeback on cars. It seems a perfect time to revisit Splittin’ Image then, not just because it hinged on the pivot between two very different times (as we suspect we are too right now), but also because with two separate cockpits it’s perfect for social distancing!
Head to Lino’s photostream via the link above, isolate yourself in one of the cockpits, and hope things aren’t about to go all 1970s on us.
Produced by Hot Wheels from the late ’70s to early ’80s, ‘Stagefright’ brought Jack Keef’s 1849 Concord Stagecoach hot rod to bedroom floors everywhere. TLCB debutant Tony Bovkoon has brought it back, capturing the insanity of the Hot Wheels toy (and the real car on which it was based) beautifully in Model Team form. A flip body, mid-mounted V8, and some highly dubious ‘suspension’ all feature, and there’s more to see at Tony’s ‘Stagefright’ Flickr album via the link above.
The Elves, driven by hunger and a strict ‘find us a bloody car’ policy have started to return to TLCB Towers. They’ve come up trumps too as this most excellent Volkswagen Käfer (or Kaefer) Racer comes from Lino Martins and is his first car for almost two years. Pictured alongside the Hot Wheels toy it’s based on, Lino’s heavily modified Beetle features a removable body, a mid-mounted V8 engine, and official LEGO decals. See more on Flickr at the link.
These, Ladies and Gentlemen (OK, probably mostly gentlemen) are the most realistic Lego replicas that you may ever see.
They’re not replicas of real vehicles of course, but of three wonderful die-cast Hot Wheels toys from way back in the 1970s. Lego builder Brick Flag of Flickr recently decided to recreate his favourite model cars from his childhood, and in doing so he may have built the most accurate-to-life Lego models of the year.
Hot Wheels launched their die-cast vehicles ‘Ramblin’ Wrecker’, ‘Emergency Squad’ and ‘Fire Eater’ between 1975 and 1977, and now 40 years on Brick Flag has faithfully rebuilt the iconic toys so brilliantly that in some photos it’s hard to tell whether you’re looking at the metal original or the plastic replica.