Tag Archives: Lego

More Robots in Disguise

Alex Jones (aka Orion Pax)’s Transformers just keep coming! This has made the Elves very happy of course, as they now get to watch Transformers cartoons.

Following his previous appearances here at The Lego Car Blog in December and October of last year, Alex has constructed another swathe of transforming Autobot and Deception vehicles, from cranes and dump trucks to fighter jets and pick-ups. Each looks brilliant in both robot and vehicle modes, and can switch between the two by engineering so clever it makes our heads hurt.

We’re also re-featuring Alex’s amazing Optimus Prime build, as he’s now uploaded an image of the model in ‘roller base’ form, with more vehicles hidden inside!

You can see more of the awesome Optimus Prime build at Alex’s photostream, where you can also find the rest of his incredible Transformers back-catalogue. Click the link above to see more than meets the eye.

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Blumenkranz

This is the Blumenkranz, commanded by the mysterious Captain Brayan with a crew mechanical spider robots this dieselpunk ship has no equal in armour and firepower. Full disclosure, we took all of that directly from the builder’s description, because we are way out of our depth here!

What we do know is that AdNorrel‘s creation is a triumph of ingenious building techniques and incredible attention to detail, with wonderful approaches to design literally everywhere you look. Head to Ad’s Blumenkranz album on Flickr to the see the complete gallery of superb imagery.

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Motorcycle Monday

Discovered by one of our Elves on Flickr, this funky chopper motorcycle gives Mark Dock his TLCB debut. Simply constructed and with a superb engine there’s more to see of Mark’s Model Team motorbike at his photostream. Click the link above to make the jump.

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No School Like the Old School

BMW’s M-cars have got ever more capable, and ever more silly. The latest M3 is phenomenal machine that is almost pointlessly over-powered. Still, it’s not an X6M so that’s worth celebrating.

Back in the 1980s BMW’s M-cars weren’t all about power though, as demonstrated by the first M3. The ‘E30’ series was only a four-cylinder and it only had around 200bhp, but it was small, light and agile, making about a billion times more fun than the current version. Which is why the values of E30 M3s have gone stratospheric.

Luckily SP_LINEUP has created a more attainable version, via his superb mildly modified 8-wide model, complete with opening doors and hood, and a roll cage inside the detailed interior. Head to Flickr via the link above to see more of SP’s brick-built recreation of the first – and best – M3 that BMW ever made.

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Powered-Up Porsche (II)

Porsche 911s are everywhere in the car scene, so it’s apt that it’s the car of choice for Lego builders too. Having published our first ‘Powered-Up’ creation utilising LEGO’s new bluetooth components yesterday – a classic Porsche 911 – here’s another ‘Powered-Up’ equipped model, a… er, classic Porsche 911.

Flukey similarities aside, it’s a mega build by previous bloggee and TLCB Master MOCer Mahjqa, who has deployed LEGO’s new components to great effect in his ’80s ‘whale tail’ Porsche.

LED lights feature alongside the bluetooth-controlled drive and steering and there’s more to see of Mahjqa’s build at both his Flickr photostream and the Eurobricks forum.

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Supercar of the ’70s

If there’s one car that encapsulates supercars of the 1970s, it’s this one. The Lamborghini Countach was, well… basically un-drivable. No visibility, the widest tyres ever fitted to a production car, the world’s heaviest clutch, zero thought to driver ergonomics, and less power than a modern Mercedes-Benz A-Class…

And yet… look at it. Designed by Bertone in 1971 the Countach was produced from 1974 all the way until 1990, whereupon it was replaced by the Diablo, with some 1,800 units built over its sixteen year life. Later cars were ‘improved’ with the addition of wide arches, sills, and a mental rear wing (making the Countach as iconic in the ’80s as in the decade of its birth), but we prefer the early ones like this LP400.

Flickr’s Jonathan Elliott is the genius behind this 7-wide Speed Champions version, putting LEGO’s new canopy part to brilliant use here. In fact seeing as LEGO have a licence to make Lamborghini sets we think Jonathan’s LP400 would make an excellent addition to the official Speed Champions line-up from whence the canopy part came.

Head to Jonathan’s photostream via the link above if you like his Lamborghini as much as we do, where you can see more this model and his impressive back-catalogue of Speed Champions builds.

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Chilean Aviation Pioneers


Luis Peña may have created the most niche Lego category of all time, and there are some bloody niche ones out there already. These three marvellous contraptions from the early days of flight come from his ‘Chilean Aviation Pioneers’ album, celebrating the first men to get airborne in Chile.

The Bristol M1.C (below) was Britain’s first combat monoplane. It was also Chile’s, as Britain delivered 12 M1.Cs to the country in lieu of two battleships that Chile had ordered from the UK, but that were commandeered by the Royal Navy to fight in the First World War before they could be delivered.

In South America the M1.C became the first aircraft in history to cross the Andes Mountains, whilst in Europe it became a successful air-racer after the war, back in the days when air racing was a thing. Just one example survives today, residing in a museum in Australia.

Luis’ second Chilean Aviation Pioneer (below) is the French-made Voisin Cellular biplane, which became the first plane ever to fly in Chile when it was piloted by César Copetta in 1910, some twenty year before the formation of the Chilean airforce.

Like the Bristol above the vintage aircraft has been superbly recreated in 1:40 (roughly mini-figure) scale, including the the guide wires, spindly wheels, and wooden frame and wing struts.

Luis’ Final Chilean Aviation Pioneer is the 1909 Blériot XI (below), a French design that became the first aircraft ever to fly across the English Channel, as well as the first heavier-than-air aircraft to be used in war, when it was deployed in Africa in 1910. The Blériot also became the first military aircraft to fly in Chile, in the hands of Captain Manuel Ávalos in 1913.

As wonderfully constructed as Luis’ other aircraft there’s more to see of the Blériot XI, plus the Bristol M.1C and Voisin Cellular and Luis’ ‘Chilean Aviation Pioneers album’ on Flickr. Click the link above to go flying over Chile sometime in the early twentieth century.

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Powered-Up Porsche

LEGO have finally entered the bluetooth-controlled era with their new Control+ app and ‘Powered-Up’ sets, such as the 42109 Top Gear Rally Car revealed here last year.

Taking the new electrics from the 42109 set, Eurobricks’ apachaihapachai has re-fitted them in excellent classic Porsche 911, giving his model remote control drive and steering via bluetooth. Head to the Eurobricks forum via the link above to see all the images and join the discussion.

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War Wreckin’

The U.S military operates vehicles in some pretty inhospitable places. Currently most of these places are dust-filled ovens, putting the machinery in use under intense strain. And, let’s face it, they are American vehicles so they will break.

Unfortunately the local recovery services in such places are unlikely to be willing to help out, and – even if they were – an Abrams tank is probably a bit beyond their ability. Fortunately the U.S military has these ready to rescue their broken vehicles; the M936 6×6 Wrecker.

Built by TLCB regular Ralph Savelsberg this mini-figure scale replica of the M936 may not be in ‘dust-filled oven’ camouflage but it is mightily accurate in all other respects. A working rotating crane, detachable stabilisers, and wonderful detailing are all included and there’s more to see at Ralph’s M936 Wrecker album on Flickr by clicking here.

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LEGO Technic 2020 | Set Previews!

And now, later than billed, it’s the all new 2020 Technic line-up! OK, we’re well into 2020 now (and have already previewed the new 42109 Top Gear Rally Car and 42110 Land Rover Defender sets), but one of our Elves got caught at The LEGO Company’s HQ and securing its release was harder than removing a U.S President from office. We wouldn’t have minded (we have lot of Elves) but it had some great intel…

42101 Buggy

This intel in fact, the new 42101 Buggy aimed at aged 7+ and featuring 117 pieces. 42101 looks like a modern reinterpretation of the classic (and awesome) 8818 Dune Buggy set from 1993. It’s not as good as the 1993 version obviously, which had a single-cylinder piston engine, but it does feature steering and rear suspension, making it a worthwhile entry point into the Technic range. Expect to pay around $12/£9 in stores.

42102 Mini Claas Xerion

The second entry point into the 2020 Technic range brings back the familiar green and red we’ve come to know from one of LEGO’s official partnerships. The original 42054 Claas Xerion 5000 set is – we think – one of the best Technic sets of all time, and the 130 piece 42102 set resembles a tiny (like, really really tiny) version of the 2017 flagship. Accurate decals, working steering, and a lawn mower thingy that rotates as the model is pushed along make the Mini Claas Xerion a neat set for ages 7+, and like the Technic Buggy above it’s available for pocket money. Good stuff.

42103 Dragster

Uh oh, the Pull-Backs. The Scrappy-Dos of Technic, we haven’t yet been impressed by any of these. However 2020 looks like it might be the exception, because we rather like this one! Featuring nothing but a pull-back motor (boo), the new 42103 Dragster set displays the usual extensive stickerage we’ve come to expect from these sets but it looks… well, really rather good. Aimed at ages 7+, 42103 includes 225 pieces, a ‘Christmas tree’ light, and a wheelie-bar. Could 2020 be the first year of decent pull-back sets?

42104 Race Truck 

No. Because back to form, here’s the 42104 Race Truck. With 227 pieces – all of which can be put to better use elsewhere – a plethora of stickers, and a pointless start/finish gantry thing, 42104 includes literally nothing that a Technic set should do. Oh, the bonnet opens, does that count? Next…

42105 Catamaran 

Breaking momentarily away from the Pull-Backs comes 42105, one of LEGO’s most unusual Technic sets ever, although perhaps 2016’s 42074 Racing Yacht proved there is a market for Technic sailing boats. With 404 parts including a pair of new two-piece hulls and those huge sails, 42105 features complete mechanical controls for the rudders, hydrofoils and sails and can be re-built into a more traditional powerboat should you wish to deploy those sail pieces elsewhere. It also floats(!), which immediately makes it cooler than any other set in this line-up (because who doesn’t like a good bath toy?). Aimed at ages 8+ expect to pay around $40/£35 for 42105, and for bath time to become much more interesting.

42106 Stunt Show

42106 pulls us back from bath time fun to, well… pull-back fun, but it could have good play value. Not much else mind. The 42106 Stunt Show includes three models in one; a pick-up truck, trailer/ramp, and a motorcycle, each looking fairly terrible despite the flame decals. The trailer features mechanically operated legs to turn it into a ramp and the truck includes steering, but that’s all. Which is nowhere near enough for a set costing $50/£45. Admittedly jumping the bike through the flaming hoop does look rather fun, but not $50 of fun, and we suspect even the Elves would tire of it quickly. We’ll be leaving this one on the shelf…

42108 Mobile Crane

The final set of H1 2020 is the largest of the line-up (not withstanding the officially licensed 42110 Land Rover Defender and 42109 Top Gear Rally Car sets revealed here at the end of 2019), the near 1,300 piece 42108 Mobile Crane. Forgive us for not being particularly excited by this one, because it does look like a reasonable set. It’s just that LEGO have released countless eight-wheel mobile cranes over the years and they’re all becoming much the same.

42108 does feature a wealth of mechanical operations, with eight-wheel steering, boom elevation, rotation and extension all via hand-powered mechanisms, a working winch with a ratchet to allow it to lift loads, and four functioning stabilisers. However despite the increase in detail that we’ve come to expect from modern Technic sets and enhanced realism thanks to a few well-judged decals, 42108 is an utterly unmemorable product. It’s also priced at around $95/£85 which – particularly as it includes no B-Model – is rather a lot.

We’ll go sailing on 42105 instead…

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My Other Truck’s a Mack

LEGO enormous 42078 Technic Mack Anthem set both impressed and infuriated us in equal measure when we reviewed it here last year. One of the set’s major plus points though is the huge quantity and variety of parts included, making it a superb acquisition for builders looking to expand their brick collection. Or build a C-Model…

This is mpj’s Volvo 8×4 crane truck C-Model (so called because the set already includes instructions for a rather nice B-Model), built entirely from the parts found within the 42078 Mack Anthem set – although with a few new stickers added.

Volvo Trucks own Mack Trucks (but not Volvo Cars weirdly) so there is a neat link between mpj’s model and the truck from the set. Like the original, mpj’s build features purely mechanical functions, with the outriggers, crane rotation, three-stage boom, and two-axle steering all controlled by hand.

The design also leaves around 1,000 of the 42078 set’s 2,500 parts unused, so there’s plenty left over to create all sorts of items for the Volvo’s flatbed.

There’s more to see of mpj’s excellent C-Model at the Eurobricks forum, where you can also find a link to instructions should you wish to turn your own Mack Anthem into a Volvo 8×4 crane truck for yourself. Take a look via the link above, and you can read our review of the original 42078 Technic set by clicking on the first link in the text.

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A Real Defender

As has been mentioned before, we’re not sold on Land Rover’s new Defender. Which means it’ll likely sell phenomenally well… We are sold on this though, John O’Shea’s perfect digital recreation of the classic Land Rover 2A 109 that first appeared here last year.

John has since rendered the best version of his design yet, because this is what a Defender should look like. OK, not in America where Defenders are fetching astronomical sums of money, or in the UK’s cities where they’re all black with tinted windows and LED lights, and have never gone up so much as a curb, but out in rural Britain where Defenders work for living.

The British countryside is full of Defenders that look like this one; battered, seized exposed screw heads, roofs green with mould, and patches over patches on the chassis. Somehow we’re not sure the new version will look like these in 30 years. Mostly because it probably won’t last that long.

John’s beautifully rendered 2A 109 van manages to capture all of the shediness of the thousands of Defenders carrying equipment, sheep, and farmers across the British Isles brilliantly, and there’s more to see of his stunning render at his photostream. Click here to take a closer look.

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Summer of ’69*

LEGO’s new 10265 Ford Mustang set has us yearning for more officially-licensed muscle cars. There’s hope too, as this particular Detroit classic has already been released as a Speed Champions set. It is of course the stupendous ’69 Dodge Charger R/T, the wildest muscle car of the era, and one that’s become famous to whole new generation of fans thanks to the Fast and Furious movie franchise.

This brilliant recreation of Dodge’s over-powered, under-suspended icon is the work of previous bloggee Tony Bovkoon, who has built his Charger R/T to match the scale and detail of the official Ford Mustang set. Working steering, opening doors, hood, trunk, and a detailed interior all feature, and there’s more to see of this superb creation at Tony’s ’69 Dodge Charger R/T album on Flickr via the link above.

*Nope, we’re not doing a link to today’s title song, because any DJ** that ends the night by playing it needs to go have a quiet think about how they can do better.

**For our younger readers; a DJ is sort of like if your Spotify playlist were a person.

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Big Blocks Fine Autos

“Spotted her the minute you walked in, didn’t you, sir? She’s a real beauty.”
“Er…”
“The Ford Thundercougarfalconbird! Nothing makes you feel more like a man than a Thundercougarfalconbird. So how much were you thinking of spending on this Thundercougarfalconbird?
“Sorry, I’m not here to buy.”
“I understand, and it’s wonderful you don’t care whether anyone questions your sexual orientation.”
“I care! I care plenty! I just don’t know how to make them stop!”
“One word: Thundercougarfalconbird!”

Used Car Salesmen Rich and Ed are here to sell you a car you never even knew you wanted, with a Speed Champions car to suit every budget, all at unbelievably good value! And with an on-site workshop, you can trust that your car has been prepared to the very highest standard that Big Blocks Fine Autos’ strict preparation budget will allow.

Flickr’s Thomas Gion is the builder behind this brilliant – if slightly dodgy-looking – Speed Champions car dealership, complete with a used car forecourt, showroom office, and a repair bay with a working two-post lift. Visit Rich and Ed at Big Blocks Fine Autos via the link above and take that Thundercougarfalconbird for a test drive!

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Indian Chief

We’re not sure this is the most politically-correct motorcycle in the world, but it sure might be the most beautiful. The Indian Chief Classic is the brand’s modern interpretation of their rich two-wheeled heritage, recreated in spectacular fashion here by previous bloggee Henrik Jensen.

Henrik’s stunning Model Team Indian Chief is – like all the best creations – 100% LEGO, however many of the pieces have been custom chromed to create the incredible finish you see here.

Phenomenal detailing is evident throughout the build, with our particular highlight being the superbly replicated V-Twin engine, first designed in LDD before its construction from chromed LEGO pieces.

Henrik’s beautiful creation includes working rear suspension, steering, and custom ‘Indian’ decals, and there’s a whole lot more to see at his ‘Indian Chief Classic 2017‘ album on Flickr; click the link to take a closer look at one of the most impressive bikes this site has featured yet.

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