Tag Archives: LED Lights

From Land to Landfill

The Earth is undergoing a considerable change. Of course it has always changed, thanks to a variable climate and the evolution borne from it, however until recently it’s been in a period of beautiful stability that lasted tens of thousands of years. And then mankind started chopping everything down, digging everything up, and burning it…

The result is a climate changing at a rate that is way beyond the pace that life can adapt to survive, and once the permafrost melts and releases the methane trapped within it, we’re on a one-way train to doomsville.

It’s not too late though, as nature has a remarkable ability to heal itself if given the chance. One way we can limit the damage is to consume less, whether that’s energy, material things, or food. Food production, particularly meat, is the single largest contributor to the destruction of our wilderness. Buying local, and not eating the meat from intensively-farmed, chemical-filled, miserable animals, is both better for us and the planet upon which we live.

Cue Chris Elliott‘s Japanese mobile greengrocer, bringing locally grown produce to your door in a converted minibus. Chris’s beautifully detailed creation includes a range of brick-built veg, breads and pastries, a burst of pink flowers down the side, and even LED lighting. Plus there’s not a battery-farmed chicken in sight.

Reducing consumption doesn’t necessarily mean buying less, as at present an average of 219lbs of food is wasted annually by every American, equating to over a third of all U.S. food production.

Throwing less away, and recycling it when we do (even food), means less chopping down, less digging up, and less burning. Cue Jonathan Elliott‘s excellent Dennis Eagle garbage truck/bin lorry, which is where what we discard usually ends up. Jonathan’s bin lorry captures the real thing superbly, and there’s even a working lift mechanism at the back.

Sadly it only has black and grey bins, but change them for green and blue (or whatever the recycling colours are where you live), and we might just avert the looming catastrophe yet. Click the links above to follow the food from land to landfill, and ask yourself if there’s a better way…

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The World’s Most Expensive Recovery Truck

This astonishing creation is a fully working replica of the U.S Glomar Explorer, constructed by Master MOCer and world-renowned builder Paweł ‘Sariel’ Kmieć, and you’re in for a truly remarkable story…

It’s 1968, and the Soviet ballistic missile submarine K-129 has been lost with all 98 crew, plummeting over 16,000ft to the ocean floor. It’s just a few years after the Cuban Missile Crisis and the Cold War is very real indeed. The Soviet Union is looking for its lost submarine, but 150 miles in the wrong place. The U.S. however, knows where it is…

And so begins one the strangest and most expensive recovery efforts in history, as the CIA commission the building of a ship designed solely to pluck the wreck of K-129 from the seabed to learn its secrets, without the Soviet Union knowing.

Costing $1.4billion, it was one seriously expensive recovery truck, although of course its true purpose was hidden behind a ‘drilling for magenese’ cover story, fronted by millionaire aviator and film-maker Howard Hughes.

Six years later and the 50,000 ton 600ft long ship was ready. Named the Transocean Glomar Explorer, it was positioned above the wreck using radio beacons (GPS being some way off) and the CIA began the enormous recovery of the 330ft, 2,700 long ton (before it was filled with water) nuclear-armed submarine.

A giant claw dropped through a moon pool in the centre of the ship, gripping the wreck of K-129 and winching it to the surface. However during the 16,500ft ascent a mechanical failure occurred, and two thirds of the submarine broke loose and sunk back to the ocean floor, taking with it the sought-after nuclear missiles and code book. However, two nuclear-tipped torpedoes and cryptographic machines were recovered, along with the bodes of six crew members, which were not returned to the Soviet Union, but back to the sea.

The Glomar Explorer was purposeless after the mission was (partly) completed, and in 1976 it transferred to the U.S Navy for storage in a dry-dock. In 1978 however, the ship was leased to test prototype deep sea mining equipment, before being converted to a drilling ship in the 1990s. It was finally scrapped in 2015.

Recreating this incredible feat of engineering is Sariel, whose floating brick-built replica of the Glomar Explorer measures over 3 metres in length, uses 60kg of LEGO pieces, and can really (partly) recover a lost Soviet submarine, thanks to a fully working recreation of the monumental grapple crane fitted to the real ship.

We won’t write too much more here as there’s really only one way to appreciate this spectacular build – take a look at the video above (or click here to find it in the Eurobricks discussion), and watch how one of the most impressive Lego creations of all time was built, and how it can recover nearly all of a brick-built submarine from the bottom of a swimming pool…

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The Boss

The muscle car market has gone mad in recent years. Upwards of 700bhp is now available from stock, and whilst many modern muscles cars have now added revolutionary new technologies such as ‘steering’ and ‘suspension’, we suspect actually using all that power is a difficult thing to do. Resulting in happenings like this. And this. And this. And this.

Things were little different back in the late ’60s, when the first power race between muscle car makers began. This was one of Ford’s efforts from the time; the Mustang Boss 429. The ‘429’ moniker stood for the V8 engine’s cubic inch capacity, which translates to seven litres. Seven. Most European cars at the time made do with just over one.

Of course the Boss’s steering, braking and suspension were – in true muscle car tradition – woefully inadequate, meaning that morons-with-daddy’s-money in 1969 could plow their new car into a street light in much the same way as they do today, only without the event being captured on YouTube.

Today though, we’re joining the muscle car crashing fraternity too, thanks to Hogwartus, and this superb SBrick-powered remote control Technic Boss 429.

Driven by two L Motors, with a Medium Motor turning the steering and another controlling the four-speed sequential gearbox, Hogwartus’s creation is a riot to drive. That is until we spun it into a kitchen cabinet. We’ll blame the Mustang-accurate torsion bar rear suspension for that faux-par. The front suspension is independent though, and the model also includes opening and locking doors, hood and trunk, a replica 7-litre V8 engine (that turns via the drive motors), sliding seats, and LED headlights.

There’s more to see of Hogwartus’s stunning Technic ’69 Mustang Boss 429 at the Eurobricks forum by clicking here, plus via the truly excellent video below, which must be one of the few Mustang videos on YouTube that don’t end like this.

YouTube Video

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Game of Bricks – Light Kit (10271 Fiat 500) | Review

It’s review time here at The Lego Car Blog, and on this occasion we thought we’d share the love and offer the product we were supplied to one of our readers. It just so happens that the reader in question owns a considerably more professional Lego site than we do…

So, over to Balasz at the brilliant Racing Brick, as he switches on one of Game of Bricks newest kits, bringing LED lighting to the lovely LEGO 10721 Fiat 500 set;

TLCB kindly offered me a light kit by Game of Bricks for the Creator Expert 10271 Fiat 500 kit. This happened months ago, but due to some logistical issues on both sides (thanks Coronavirus, Ed.), I only had a chance to try it now.

The 10271 lighting kit comes in a nice black box, but it only has the logo of the manufacturer on it. I’m not sure if you get any additional identification if you order multiple light kits, but mine didn’t give any clues as to which LEGO set it belonged to.

Inside the box I found five numbered plastic bags and a battery box, and as you can see there’s not any extra documentation or anything in the box besides the hardware, which is a good thing if we think about the environment, but it makes the project a bit challenging if we are looking for some building instructions.I tried to go first to the web page of Game of Bricks and the product page of the Fiat 500 light kit, but there’re no instructions there.

As the text says I can ask for pdf instructions, but I was hoping to find them without the need to reach out to the team.As always Google helped me out; apparently Game of Bricks have a page for their instructions and I managed to find the one for the Fiat 500. I already installed some light kits from other manufacturers and the instructions were very similar, I can say that the steps for this set are pretty easy to follow.

The tiny LEDs and the cables are also familiar, if you ever saw a 3rd party light kit then there won’t be any surprises.

Installing the front lights is a pretty straightforward exercise, although I was a bit surprised that only the upper lights got a replacement piece instead of the LEGO pieces, the lower ones had to be squeezed under the transparent round 1×1 piece.Under normal circumstances there’s exactly zero space between the transparent piece and the stud below it, so even with this super thin wire it will be a bit off and you need to push it in place carefully.

The rear section has similar challenges to solve, and we get a light strip for the roof with an adhesive tape to attach to the sunroof. I decided not to attach it, as the cables can be arranged to hold it in place.All cables will meet at the bottom, where you need to attach them to a splitter piece, although the tiny connectors are not the easiest to handle, and you need some extra arrangement if you want to keep your model movable.

The battery box requires 3 AAA batteries and includes a USB connector. If you have a smaller power bank or something similar then it might be a good idea to change it, as the one in the kit barely fits in the model. It is also challenging to turn on and off, as you need to remove it to be able to access the button.

However the end result looks great, and can really spice up a display model. The modular design is a big plus, all my previous light kits were hard wired together so it was not possible to add only certain sections of them to a model. For example, if you don’t want to use the cabin light in the Game of Bricks kit then you can simply detach it whilst leaving the rest of the LEDs in the model.

The only thing I’d like to change if I wanted to display the set permanently with LED lighting installed would be the power source, if only to make the on/off button more accessible!

Thanks to Balazs from Racing Brick for taking a look over Game of Bricks lighting kit for the 10271 Fiat 500 set. You can find this kit, along with all of the Game of Bricks kits for official LEGO vehicles, at their website, and you can check out Racing Brick too by clicking here!

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Frieghtliner

This slab of white enormity is a Frieghtliner FLA 9664, and it comes from Michael217, who has managed to combine the best of Model Team and Technic building styles into one superb creation.

The chassis is constructed from modern studless Technic, with a complete remote control drivetrain consisting of two XL Motors for drive, an L Motor for steering, and a Medium Motor to power the tilting cab hidden within it.

The lifelike Model Team exterior is matched by an accurate engine and a brilliantly detailed interior behind open doors, with all hatches inside opening too, and there’s more to see of all of that at Michael’s expansive Frieghtliner FLA Bricksafe gallery and at the Eurobricks forum by clicking here.

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A Sight to Behold(en)

This is a Holden Torana A9X, Australia’s late-’70s muscle car and dominator of the Touring Car Championship. The ‘A9X’ option added the race V8 motor usually reserved for the sedan to the hatchback body style, with just 100 units produced in this combination. Now worth around $500k AUS, the Torana A9X is a ridiculously sought-after car, but fortunately we have one today that’s far more attainable.

Built by TLCB Master MOCer Lachlan Cameron (aka Lox Lego) as commissioned model, this stunning Technic recreation of the Torana A9X captures the real ’70s muscle car in spectacular fashion, with a full remote control drivetrain and BuWizz bluetooth brick, LED lights, accurate live axle rear and torsion beam front suspension, custom chrome pieces, opening doors, hood and trunk, and – of course – a replica of the A9X’s famous five-litre V8 engine.

It’s one of our favourite cars of the year so far and there’s plenty more to see of Lachlan’s incredible creation his ‘Holden Torana A9X’ album on Flickr and the Eurobricks discussion forum. Click the links above to set the lap record at Bathurst in 1979.

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Fireman Gaz

Classic British children’s TV show Fireman Sam will always have a special place in our hearts, despite the fact that we don’t remember Sam actually putting out many fires (they’re quite perilous for a show aimed at the under sixes), and the fact that fire’man’ is probably a bit old hat these days.

Still, we’re sure there are plenty of firewomen called Sam, and plenty of firefighters called other things too, such as Gaz. Although that’s a bit colloquial for the title of a kid’s show.

Anyway, it is the title of this post because this is a GAZ, although it’s short for ‘Gorkovsky Avtomobilny Zavod’ rather than ‘Garry’. Built by Danifill of Eurobricks this GAZ 3307 fire truck features working suspension, twin L Motor drive, Servo steering, BuWizz control, LED lights, and opening everything, and there’s more to see at the discussion forum via the link above.

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Lego Land Cruiser 76

The Toyota Land Cruiser is the world’s infamous off-roader. Which means in some corners it’s very probably the most infamous vehicle of any kind. This is the 70-Series, produced since 1984 and which is still being manufactured today, specifically the medium-wheelbase ’76’ passenger version, recreated brilliantly in Technic form by previous bloggee Kevin Moo.

Wonderfully accurate on the outside, Kevin’s Land Cruiser is packed with remote control functions too, allowing the model to navigate the wilds of his back garden with ease. A third-party SBrick provides the 76 with programmable bluetooth control, with all-wheel-drive, steering, and LED lights, plus the build includes working suspension, and opening doors, hood and tailgate.

Full details of Kevin’s awesome Toyota Land Cruiser 76 can be found at the Eurobricks forum by Eurbricks discussion forum, where a link to building instructions can also be found so you can build your very own! Click the link above to take a look, or below to see Kevin’s brilliant build in action.

YouTube Video:

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Stalin’s Cat

It wasn’t the British or the Americans that sacrificed the most in the Second World War, but Russia, with more lives lost than almost every other country put together. It was fitting then that it was Stalin’s army that victoriously made it to Berlin first to end the war in Europe.

Things quickly changed once the common enemy was defeated though, with Stalin killing millions of his own people to add to the wartime total, and the Soviet Union developing nuclear weapons to match the U.S, ushering in a decades-long Cold War.

Stalin’s wartime victory (and totalitarian regime) led to everything being called something with ‘Stalin’ in it, including the vehicle in this post. Built in Stalingrad, the Stalinec T130 bulldozer was actually an American Caterpillar manufactured under licence, despite the fact the two countries were on the verge of annihilating one another.

We’re not sure if Joseph Stalin ever drove a Stalinec, but he was probably pleased it – like everything else – was named after him, even if underneath it was actually designed by evil capitalist Americans. This lovely Lego recreation of the Stalinec T130 comes from Flickr’s martin nespor, who has also built an impressive Skoda Xena / LIAZ 400 Series truck and low-loader trailer to transport it.

All three models are beautifully constructed and detailed, with both the Skoda Xena and Stalinec T130 featuring remote control drive and steering via bluetooth. The Skoda also includes integrated LED lighting and authentic stickerage to add to the realism, whilst the Stalinec T130’s blade can raise and lower via Power Functions too.

A wealth of imagery is available via Martin’s ‘Stalinec T130’ album on Flickr – click the link above to make the jump to check out the complete gallery of Stalin’s Cat, and here to see more of the more modern Skoda Xena transporting it.

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Oceanic Programmatic

This is a DAF XF Super Space Cab truck and Oceanic Airlines trailer, complete with a brilliant brick-built mosaic, remote control drive and steering, and LED lights. Built by previous bloggee Lasse Deleuran it’s a superb model, highlighting just how good Lego vehicles can be, yet it’s was you can’t see that’s even more impressive.

Utilising a programable PFx brick (a kickstarter project that debuted here way back in 2017), Lasse’s truck not only has remote control drive and steering via bluetooth and a working fifth wheel, it also contains a complete light and sound sequence programmed by the builder into the PFx brick, bringing his model spectacularly to life.

The PFx brick can be programmed with an infinite array of movement, light, and sound, much like the classic Technic Barcode Truck from 1997, only much smaller, and a fair bit cleverer too.

Head to Lasse’s photostream via the link above to see more of his Oceanic Airlines DAF XF, where you can also find a link to YouTube showing the both PFx brick in action and also how Lasse programmed the sequences used in his model.

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Humdrum Supercar

Technic Supercars are not defined by the type of car they would be in the real world. Most would still be super cars of course, but some… some are little more mundane. Like a Fiat 125p for example. And we love them for this.

This heroically humdrum Technic Supercar is the work of Porsche96, who has created Fiat’s 1960s sedan in unbelievable accuracy. In fact Fiat’s regular 125 was too flashy for Porsche96, who decided to built the 125p version; the Polski-Fiat built under license by FSO in Poland until a scarcely believable 1991.

Porsche96’s recreation of the Polish peoples’ car includes all of the prerequisites to be classified as a Technic Supercar, plus a whole lot more besides. Working steering, a functioning four-cylinder engine and four-speed gearbox, and all-wheel suspension tick all the Supercar boxes, whilst remote control for the drive, steering, and even gearbox (thanks to a suite of Power Functions motors and servos, plus an SBrick and BuWizz battery) goes much further indeed.

There are opening and locking doors, an opening bonnet with a working interior release mechanism, adjustable seats, LED head and tail lights, and also fully removable bodywork.

It all adds up to Porcshe96’s Fiat 125p being one of the most accurately engineered (and brilliantly built) Technic Supercars that we’ve ever featured, even if the real world car is about as far from a super car as it is possible to be. Which somehow makes this model all the cooler.

There’s much more to see including a full build description on Eurobricks, the complete and extensive gallery of images can be found on Bricksafe, and building instructions are available via Rebrickable. Plus you watch this amazing Technic Supercar in action via the brilliant video below.

YouTube Video:

 

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Ferrari F12 | Picture Special

This is a Ferrari F12, built by Lachlan Cameron (aka LoxLego), a TLCB Master MOCer and pioneer of designing and releasing incredible Technic Supercars for other Lego fans to build at home.

Lachlan has published instructions for dozens of his sensational creations via the Rebrickable platform, where we fully expect this Ferrari F12 to be before long. Our Elves couldn’t wait though, so we have Lachlan’s creation here at TLCB Towers for a full Elven assessment (which usually mean sitting in it, fighting over it, and occasionally trying to eat bits of it). Don’t worry, we’re here too, so we’ll try to write something useful…

Faithfully replicating Ferrari’s V12-engined grand tourer, Lachlan has included a wealth of Technic Supercar functions packaged inside the beautifully accurate exterior. There’s a front/mid-mounted V12 engine of course, with fully independent suspension and working steering, plus the doors, hood and hatchback trunk all open, revealing a brilliantly lifelike interior and engine bay.

Lachlan has also included LEDs to illuminate the front and rear lights, with a battery box hidden neatly inside.

A huge gallery of stunning imagery is available to view at Lachlan’s ‘Ferrari F12’ album on Flickr by clicking here, you can read his interview here at TLCB as part of the Master MOCers Series by clicking here, and you can see all of Lachlan’s amazing models with building instructions available by clicking here, where the F12 should appear in the near future.

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VAG BUG

Today’s creation might sound like something you picked up on that trip to Thailand, but it is in fact the dubious name given to this marvellous Technic Volkswagen Beetle buggy by its maker, februar88. Stupendous in its appearance, februar88’s creation includes four drive motors – with one L Motor powering each wheel, plus Servo steering, a V8 engine (turned by a Medium Motor), mega suspension, opening and locking doors, LED lights, and SBrick programmable bluetooth control. There’s lots more to see – including a video of the bug in action – at the Eurobricks discussion forum. Take your penicillin and learn a valuable lesson about using protection via the link above.

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Fully Loaded

We’re not talking about that mediocre 2005 Herbie film (there’s only one reason to watch that and it isn’t Herbie), but this; mihao‘s most excellent Technic Supercar, which is absolutely packed with working features.

Considerably smaller than LEGO’s official Technic Supercar sets (the reviews of which you can find here), mihao’s model still squeezes in all the Supercar prerequisites, including working suspension (independent), steering, a 3-speed gearbox, and a V4 engine.

It can also be built with the mechanical functions swapped for motorised ones, with two L Motors driving the real wheels, Servo steering, and LED head and tail lights.

Full details and imagery can be found at the Eurobricks discussion forum, plus you can vote for mihao’s creation to become an official LEGO Technic Supercar set at the LEGO Ideas platform here.

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Rapid Bus

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.

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