This is the EBRC Jaguar, France’s new armoured reconnaissance & combat vehicle, and – according to builder Jordan Parmegiani (aka ParmBrick) – it’s equipped with electronic IED countermeasures and missile alert systems, a 40mm cannon, two MMP anti-tank guided missiles, a 7.62mm remote controlled machine gun, and eight smoke grenades. Which all sounds marvellous, but more importantly, being French, just look at how many poles there are to hang a white flag on! See more of Jordan’s Jaguar at both Eurobricks and Flickr via the links.
*Plus a few Speed Champions kits.
lazy, er… we mean tremendously generous, we’re handing over to another reader today for a review of more LED lighting kits for the 2020 LEGO sets, courtesy of LEGO-compatible LED lighting experts Game of Bricks. John Olive is the lucky recipient/willing reviewer, who has fitted some twinkly lights to his 10277 Crocodile Locomotive, and a few Speed Champions sets too – over to John!
Lights are only good for 3 things. Driving in the dark, for decorating a Holiday tree, and for lighting up LEGO sets. You know that feeling you have when you’ve finished building an official set that cost you an arm and a leg, and you have the desire to take your build to the next level? Well, for a good price it’s time to look to lighting your set or own creation with a good set of lighting kits.
While the current lineup of LEGO lighting kits are few and far between, a majority of builders have to turn to 3rd party vendors for all their lighting needs.
I had the distinct pleasure of getting hooked up with some lighting kits from Game of Bricks. Curious on the build quality and lighting ability, I had 3 kits sent to me in the United States. Two were for Speed Champions sets and the third was for the 10277 Crocodile Locomotive.
While shipping did take a little while, I was pleasantly surprised that when the package arrived, the kits were packaged nicely in thin black boxes. Inside all 3 kits, were the necessary components for each set and all came with a disclaimer packet. I was thrown off for a hot second because there weren’t any installment instructions and I didn’t know which lighting kit was for which set. I was quickly corrected by my 6 year old as he noticed a sticker on each kit with the set number on there. Go figure.
I had to refer back to the website for instructions as the kits didn’t come with an installment guide which was conflicting with their website offer of having instructions in every set. The instructions online were geared towards folks that have built the corresponding set already, so it included tear down instructions prior to adding the lights. This was extremely helpful for the Speed Champions sets and Crocodile. With only receiving digital instructions, I don’t hold that against them as I prefer to use digital instructions. The pictures were clear and provided a close up view of what was happening. I may have been distracted by the model’s fingernail in some pictures, but as I replicated the instructions on my own desk, it was apparent that Game of Bricks had given some thought in this phase of the installment. While the sets I reviewed were somewhat newer, hopefully older sets have the instructions right out of the box. Just in case customers don’t have the internet.
Let’s get to the actual kits.
The quality of the lighting kits was high just by the look and feel of the components. The website promises top notch quality, and while I’m unsure of the specific requirements to that, my experience with lighting kits confirms that it’s true. The extremely thin Connecting Cables are wound tightly and I didn’t notice any unraveling wires when running the cables in between the plates and bricks. Connecting the cables to a light strip has to be done very carefully and will be rewarded with an audible click when it slipped in there correctly.
*Veteran tip: A classic technique requires you to use your fingernail to push the connector into the port when dealing with such small components.*
Once cause of concern when dealing with any kind of lighting kit is the size of the LEDs used, but luckily Game of Bricks comes through with the perfect size. On the Crocodile Locomotive set, there are several 1×1 translucent clear pips that mimic the lights.
The LEDs from GOB fit nicely inside the pip. On the flip side, the light kit for the 75894 Mini Cooper S Rally & 2018 Mini John Cooper Works Buggy came with 2 sets of pips that had small holes that snaked the connecting table inside for you. This was because the Crocodile lights had their clear pips connected to a brick that allowed the cable to be hidden. When it comes to creating lighting kits, attention to the smallest detail allows for an easy installment. Spending time with a set when developing these clever little work-arounds is important because not only does it need to be installed correctly, the cables need to be hidden in order to pull off that realistic component of the set. No one likes a gorgeous set with clunky wires being exposed. With that, Game of Bricks is going to receive good marks when it comes to hiding cables.
While it makes sense to light up a locomotive like the Crocodile, Speed Champions sets like the MINI or Jaguar were a wild card for me. In all my years going to brick shows, it is rare to see those small cars being lit up because it becomes difficult to hide those clunky battery boxes. Luckily the battery boxes provided in the lighting kits aren’t much bigger than a zippo lighter, and comfortably hold 3 triple A batteries. Just make sure that you are hiding that box behind the set as it is clear that these lighting kits are more for display than for running trains on a train layout. A nice little tidbit is having the on/off switch on that battery box and some sets like the Crocodile include a secondary battery box for two 3 volt round batteries. This extremely thin box allows for installment underneath the set and is hidden from view. The finished models shined brightly in all the right places. For example, on the Crocodile Locomotive, the main cabin’s lights shine a dull yellow, mimicking this 1919-1986 model, while the lights at the front and rear “snouts” shone a bright white light. I appreciated the thought behind those decisions.
Having so many options for kits leads to the biggest question that I will leave to others to debate. Are there certain LEGO sets that should be MODed for lighting kits or are there sets that should not be lit?
Game of Bricks throws all that into the wind with their wide selection of lighting kits and says, you shouldn’t let anybody tell you what LEGO set to light up. Their catalog of lighting kits is ever growing, and just by the looks and experience of using their lighting kits, it’s hard to not think of a LEGO set they don’t have a kit for. If they don’t have one available, you can make suggestions which I appreciate as a consumer.
As LEGO continues to pump out new sets, Game of Bricks appear to be doing a great job of creating new kits for them. With their robust catalog of kits, and accessories for your own creations, I believe that Game of Bricks is here to light up the competition.
It’s review time here at The Lego Car Blog, but today’s review is not an official LEGO set. Looking like a car from LEGO’s new 8-wide Speed Champions range – only with considerably more detail – this is Brickworms’ Jaguar MkII kit, one of the many custom real-world replicas available to buy on their website.
With kits from the ‘How to Build Brick Cars’ book by Peter Blackert (one of several books available to buy at the Brickworms online store), plus other vehicles such as this classic Jaguar, aircraft and even animals, there are dozens of models to choose from. But are they any good? Read on to find out!
Our Jaguar MkII kit arrived in a cottony drawstring bag, a neat packaging solution and one we rather like. Inside the pieces required to construct the Jag were jingling happily together, as was a paper instructions booklet, which wasn’t jingling at all.
The instructions booklet for our Jaguar was rather interesting, being printed on standard paper (not gloss), and switching the black parts for a light semi-transparent blue, as you can see below, and clear-trans for yellow. This is presumably to save on ink, but – once you get your head around blue being black – it probably makes the instructions easier to follow, as black pieces can be hard to spot. LEGO have got round this in recent years by applying all sorts of colours to the hidden parts of their sets and via their beautiful glossy instructions manuals, but the Brickworms’ approach, whilst a little odd, works pretty well.
The instructional steps themselves are clear, although more complicated than the over-simplified equivalents from LEGO, with many pieces applied at once. This is also because the Jaguar itself is more complex than LEGO’s similarly-sized Speed Champions sets, with advanced building techniques and a higher level of detail. However, we did feel a bit like Beta testers with our kit…. Continue reading
LEGO have electrified the Speed Champions range! This is the new 76898 Formula E Panasonic Jaguar Racing GEN2 & I-Pace eTrophy set, the latest addition to the brilliant officially-licensed Speed Champions line-up (and the set with probably the longest name yet).
Bringing both Formula E and Jaguar into the Speed Champions fold is an exciting tie-up, particularly if it opens the door to other sets from Jaguar’s glorious back-catalogue.
The new 76989 set includes two cars from the Panasonic Jaguar Racing team; both the GEN2 Formula E racer and the road-car based I-Pace eTrophy support racer. Each car takes the scale up slightly from past Speed Champions sets, allowing for two mini-figures to sit side-by-side in the I-Pace, plus the set also includes a start/finish gantry and accurate decals to recreate the real Panasonic Jaguar team livery.
We think that the I-Pace – whilst a superb real car by all accounts – doesn’t translate particularly well in brick form, looking a bit like an iron, but the Formula E car certainly looks striking in the brick, especially in Jaguar’s electric blue. 76989 will reach stores in January of 2020, bringing with it two welcome partnerships to the Speed Champions range. More please LEGO!
Jaguar’s iconic E-Type was described by Enzo Ferrari as the most beautiful car in the world. We’d have to agree (in its early form at least), but that sure does make it a tricky thing to build from rectangular plastic bricks.
Flickr’s Lennart C has given it a go though, and he’s made as good a job of the classic Jaguar’s incredible curves as we’ve seen at this scale. Lennart has deployed some magnificently complicated techniques to create his E-Type Coupe, with the roof in particular boggling our minds here at The Lego Car Blog. It’s a great build underneath too, with the front clamshell opening to reveal a superbly replicated Jaguar straight-6 engine.
There’s more of Lennart’s excellent E-Type to see at his photostream – make the jump to Flickr via the link above to view all the photos.
Wise words from the King of Pop there. Eurobricks member martijnnab has used this excellent advice to great effect, building two versions of his gorgeous Technic Jaguar XK120 Roadster in contrasting colours.
Martijn’s Jaguars are inverse to the meaning behind Michael Jackson’s 1991 hit however, as whilst they look the same on the surface they are very different underneath, with the white XK featuring mechanical functions including a straight-6 engine and working steering whilst the black XK includes a fully remote controlled Power Functions drivetrain.
There’s lots more to see of both versions of Martijn’s wonderful Technic Jaguar XK120 Roadster at the Eurobricks forum – click on the link above to make the jump.
Not our words, but those of one Enzo Ferrari, expressing his admiration for Jaguar’s new sports car at its launch in 1961. Nearly six decades later the E-Type’s legacy is secured thanks to its incredible looks, but at the time the new Jaguar had the world talking for far more than its beauty.
Based upon Jaguar’s three-time Le Mans winner, the E-Type featured disc brakes, independent rear suspension and the highest top speed of any production car at the time. And yet the E-Type cost only about the same a premium saloon car, which meant in today’s terms you could buy a Bugatti Veyron for the price of a mid-spec Audi.
The E-Type was, and still is, quite a car. The result of course is that – whilst prices were reasonable for decades – recently the classic Jaguar has become astronomically expensive, especially early cars such as the one pictured here.
We’ll stick with this one then, built by Flickr’s Senator Chinchilla, and available to view at his photostream here. The Senator has done a grand job capturing the E-Type’s wonderful lines in Lego form, and there’s lots more to see of his recreation of the car Enzo envied via the link above.
It’s been a lean time for Lego cars on the internet over last few days. Fortunately one of our workers brought this Jaguar E-Type into the luxury editorial suite at TLCB towers today. Red Smarties all round!* Lennart C has worked hard to capture the curves of this classic machine in just 11 studs width or 1/18th scale. We think that he’s done a great job. Click the link in the text to see more views.
*Well, one for the lucky Elf who found the car.
We adore classic cars here at TLCB, and this is one of our absolute favourites; Jaguar’s glorious 1957 XK-SS.
The top secret panel of competition judges (by which we mean, er… us) would put this very highly on our ‘like’ list, but if you’re looking at this and thinking ‘ I can’t build like that’ – don’t worry! Whilst TLCB Team love Tim’s creation it’s much too classy for the Elves, and it contains no racing stripes at all. It’s all to play for!
This Claas Jaguar looks pretty dangerous up front – it’d be the perfect vehicle for a zombie apocalypse! Just us? OK.
You can see more of the Claas at Eric Trax‘s Flickr photostream, whilst we imagine mowing down the undead hordes…
…Jeremy will be mildly offensive, James will wear a wooly jumper, and Hammond will indulge in some bad acting. But we’ll still love it.
BBC’s Top Gear began way back in 1977 as a fairly straight-laced motoring magazine, updating the great unwashed on the latest new cars and motoring news (remember; no internet in 1977!). The original show helped to launch the careers of many TV motoring journalists, including the brilliant Tiff Needell and Quentin Wilson, and of course a certain Mr. Clarkson and Mr. May.
Top Gear evolved during these first decades becoming more humorous and politically incorrect, helped largely by the arrival of Quentin and Jeremy whose reviewing style could make-or-break a new car. After a one particularly damning review Peugeot famously declared that they were removing all of their adverts from the BBC – but of course due to the unique way the BBC is funded, Top Gear and everything else broadcast contains no advertising at all anyway. Take that Peugeot!
In 2000 however, the BBC canned Top Gear and sold the production (but not the name) to Channel 5, and Fifth Gear was born. Most of the presenters moved across to the new show and we’ve had to read uninformed ‘This is Fifth Gear you dumb %$@£!’ comments on YouTube (when a video correctly shows old Top Gear) ever since.
The BBC held onto the name for good reason though. In 2002 Top Gear returned, with a new format, new presenters, and – for the first time – an actual studio! Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and Jason Dawe fronted this first season, before Jason was replaced by James to give us the genius line-up that has been in place ever since.
Top Gear’s new format has proved wildly successful, with over 350million viewers from 170 countries tuning in every week. And that’s not counting the re-runs showing every hour on Dave.
Such success has led to mistakes though, as Top Gear has become less genuine and more scripted over the years in a quest to recreate past (naturally occurring) glories. It’s also given the presenters an opportunity to make other programmes, and ‘Richard Hammond’s 5 O’Clock Show’ is an abomination that will be forever etched into a dark corner of the televisual hall-of-shame. Thankfully it only lasted a month, and James May’s independent presenting more than makes up for Hammond’s. James even built a house out of LEGO.
So what next for Top Gear? Well there are now live arena shows once a year, spin-offs for Australia, Russia, Korea, America and others, a new DVD each Christmas, and there’s a whole world of slightly crap merchandising. Andy Wilman (Top Gear’s producer) admits the show – at least in its current format – is probably nearer to the end of its life than the start, but we expect to keep watching for little a while yet. Onwards to season 22!
All of the photos in this post were produced by the exceptionally talented Stephan Sander, who has lovingly recreated Jeremy, James and Richard in brick form. He’s also constructed superb Lego models of Jeremy’s Citroen Motorhome, a trio of Jaguar E-Types, three Ferraris, three Lotuses and the famous Top Gear studio – complete with a wonderfully diverse audience! We highly recommend a trip to Stephan’s MOCpage to see all the photos. Back to the studio…
This is the latest addition to the big common project “Classic Race Teams” founded two years ago by Ape Fight on MOCpages. Nick Barrett started his LEGO version of the “Ecurie Ecosse” team in November 2011 with the fanstastic 1959 Commer team transporter and added a matching Jaguar D Type one year later.
Now he’s completed the team with a second Jaguar D Type, four team members and a lot of equipment. The stars of the team are, of course, the cars and the transporter. The Jaguars are packed with all the Technic functions you need: Engine, transmission, suspension and steering, whilst the transporter has a powered main ramp, a working engine, steering with two different HOG mechanisms and a complete interior.
Inspector Morse, a long running drama on British television, featured a car that probably became as famous as its lead character. Morse drove a Mark II Jaguar throughout the show’s 23 year run, even though the books on which the show was based featured a vehicle slightly more Italian. TLCB regular, Ralph Savelsberg, continues his series of movie and TV cars with the famous red 1960 Jaguar 2.4. See more at Ralph’s Flickr photostream here.
As well as being a tasty Jaguar, ‘XF’ is also a type of DAF truck in Europe. It’s a popular one too, being a very common sight on highways, and thus a worthy vehicle to recreate in little plastic bricks. Jakeof on Flickr has done a stirling job recreating the DAF XF, and has teamed the tractor unit with a superb grain / sand trailer too. See the complete rig in detail at the link above.
One of our Elves unearthed this rather lovely Jaguar XKR-S on Flickr. LEGO Bro is the builder behind it.