Monthly Archives: October 2008

NoVVember starts early when it’s Vic Viper month

Two-pronged starfighters are my favorite sort. NoVVember is already off to a good start with lots of great entries in the Vic Viper pool.

Let’s get this roundup started with Ronin VV by Fredo Houben (Fredoichi):

I can’t stop staring at the nose on Kuzma’s Mother, a chunky entry by Horace Cheng (Squinty Eyes):

Lukas goes skinnier with Soleil L4 Atmospheric:

Check out the Vic Vipers pool on Flickr.

Portal 0937 interviews Michael Jasper

Michael Jasper is easily one of my favorite builders. His many minuscule creations simultaneously inspire and annoy. (“Genius! So simple! Why didn’t I think of that?!”)

Portuguese LEGO fan community Portal 0937 has posted a great interview with the artist many LEGO fans know mainly by his Brickshelf user name — “mijasper“.

LEGO elements, in particular those small and special ones, can be used in many ways – you just have to look at them as what they could be.

Head on over to Portal 0937 to read the full interview with Michael Jasper.

(Via LegOficina dos Baixinhos.)

Box4Blox: Sorting made Easy [Review]

Recently Box4Blox sent us a couple sets of their sorting system to review. First off, if you aren’t familiar with Box4Blox, it is a series of stacking trays. Each tray has openings in the bottom, much like a seive. The openings in the trays get smaller as you continue down the stack. This has the effect of sorting your pieces by size.

As my kids have their own collections, I let them use one of the Box4Blox sets. It sorted their pieces by size and made it easier for them to find those small pieces that get lost in among the larger ones. They had a lot of fun with it and I was happy that it worked as advertised. But now was the time to try it out on my own collection.

I was intrigued to see if this system would be of use in my own, more complex, sorting arrangement. I started off with my bin of green plates. I use these a lot for landscaping but had never taken the time to sort them by size. I figured this would be a good initial test. At first I dumped the whole bin into the top tray. This clogged up the tray and it took a lot of shaking before the pieces began moving down. So I dumped it all back into my bin and I used a large Pick-a-Brick cup to dump smaller amounts into the tray. This sped up the process and I was able to run the entire bin throught the Box4Blox in sort order. As each tray filled up, I dumped them into seperate piles.

After I was done, I shuffled throught the piles and was happy to see that each pile was made up a distinct group of pieces. So, while the trays didn’t sort out the pieces into each individual kind, they did make the job much easier. I only had to sort out the 3 or 4 different kinds in each pile, instead of tackling the entire bin. That was most satisfying.

Next, I decided to give the Box4Blox a real workout. I have a large 18 gallon tub where I throw everything that needs sorted. I’d been lazy and hadn’t sorted it for quite a long time. The tub was almost full and the job was overwhelming. So I put in a movie and started dumping cupfulls of pieces into the trays. I did run into a couple of problems. Pieces that were long and thin tended to fall through to the bottom, but remain standing straight up. This blocked the flow but after I discovered this, I would grab those out before I dumped the pieces in. After that, I didn’t have much trouble and I made good progress. After about an hour, I hit bottom.

Unlike the plates, when the trays filled up I dumped them into plastic bags. I had stacked the full bags into seperate piles, based on which tray the pieces came from. After I was done, I took all the bags from one pile and I dumped them out on the table. I spread the pile out and could see that each of the bags had the same kinds of pieces in it. The Box4Blox basically pre-sorted my 18 gallon tub in a little over an hour and greatly simplified the rest of the job. Now, when I have some spare time, I can grab one of those bags and quickly sort it out. I don’t have to take on the whole heap and I know that each bag contains specific kinds of pieces.

Overall, Box4Blox easily surpassed my expectations. Not only is it a good product for keeping the kids’ bricks sorted, it also has a definite place in the Adult hobby as a pre-sorter. I recommend it.

2009 LEGO Star Wars box art [News]

UPDATE: Full coverage of 2009 LEGO Star Wars sets is now available from Toy Fair 2009.

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I can’t wait for the upcoming 2009 LEGO Star Wars sets after seeing these pictures. Indeed, just like in the other recent years, Star Wars LEGO keeps going strong with new releases of vehicles and minifigs. See more on Brickshelf.

7511 Ahsoka’s Starfighter and Vulture Droid looks like a great set with an all new R7-A7 astromech droid and the re-release of buzz droids:

Clone army builders are already licking their lips for 8014 Clone Walker Battle Pack:

The redesigned 8018 ATT features an all new Yoda minifig with printed features:

The 8019 Republic Attack Shuttle drops in with what looks to be a highly playable model with an all new Mace Windu minifig:

2009 LEGO City sets include a farm with cows [News]

Castle fans aching for 10193 Medieval Market Village aren’t the only LEGO fans who will be getting more civilian sets (and cows!) in 2009.

7637 has two cows, along with a big tractor, small tractor, and barn:

7635 includes a six-wide SUV with trailer and a brown horse:

8401 appears to be the first minifig and accessory pack for Town/City in many years:

See more (including all the new construction sets) on Eurobricks, Brickset, Brickshelf, or Flickr.