Monthly Archives: May 2012

Automated points switch

While the immediate use of Masao Hidaka‘s clever device may not be apparent to non train fan readers, I hope that the ingenious basic principles will be. Basically it’s an all mechanical, close to all ‘system’ system for changing which path a train will take, based on the position of the red dot. So much elegant engineering here and I hope it might inspire even better approaches to this and similar problems.


An Exception to Every Rule

I try to avoid posting LEGO creations based on the Halo games; there are simply too many of them around, and I don’t really think anyone wants to see another attempt at a Warthog. This diorama by legomocs. forced my hand, though. The micro scale frigate is nicely rendered, as is the accompanying Covenant spire, but neither is what caught my attention. The shape of the diorama and the angle of the ship combine to give this creation a great sense of motion. It’s difficult not to imagine the continuing flight path of the frigate, after seeing this one moment caught in time.

UNSC Grafton

On a Wing and Prayer

A wing, a prayer, and psionic energy are the only things keeping this glider by Jack McKeen (madLEGOman) aloft. Jack built this for a competition on FBTB, to be an aircraft themed to accompany the X-Men character Psylocke. I don’t know much about Psylocke, aside from seeing illustrations, but apparently she has psionic abilities. In keeping with her powers, the wings of the plane are attached by translucent beams of thought. They’re simply lovely to look at.


Theo Jansen’s Rhinoceros Strandbeest on LEGO CUUSOO

Artist/engineer Theo Jansen has been creating fantastic “kinetic sculptures” for more than 20 years. I was mesmerized the first time I saw a video of the Rhinoceros Strandbeest in motion several years ago. Now, Dutch industrial designer kvanb has created a working LEGO version of the Rhino and posted it — with Theo Jansen’s blessing — on LEGO CUUSOO.

LEGO Rhino Strandbeest on CUUSOO

Those familiar with the original sculpture will certainly be impressed by the likeness, but I literally gasped (to my wife’s surprise and alarm) when I saw the LEGO model walking in this video, shown here with Theo in his workshop:

Here’s Theo Jansen’s original Rhino, for comparison:

I would love to see this turned into a real LEGO set. I hope that approximately 10,000 of you out there will agree with me.

Viddy this: Alex & his three droogs

While I haven’t been able to spend a whole lot of time online the last couple months, I’ve managed to squeeze in an occasional build or two.

Sthaughot Gunship (1)

For weeks, I’ve been feeling a bit blocked on new ideas, but finally found a combination of color (orange with dark gray accents) and shape (rather bulbous) that I liked, inspired by the design of the little vehicle on the right. One baseball game later, I had a nicely swooshable gunship in my hands, followed by a couple tiny drones.

Will you think me strange if I admit that I hadn’t decided whether this was a large-ish microscale ship with supporting micro-vessels or a mid-size gunship with drones by the time I was ready to upload the photo? I’m actually still not sure…