About Andrew

Andrew Becraft is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of The Brothers Brick. He's been building with LEGO for nearly 40 years, and blogging about LEGO here on TBB since 2005. He's an active member of the online LEGO community, as well as his local LEGO users group, SEALUG. Andrew is also a regular attendee of BrickCon, where he organizes a collaborative display for readers of The Brothes Brick nearly every year. You can check out Andrew's own LEGO creations on Flickr. Read Andrew's non-LEGO writing on his personal blog, Andrew-Becraft.com. Andrew lives in Seattle with his wife and dogs, and by day leads software design and planning teams.

Posts by Andrew

Build your own LEGO Citroën DS and then drive your minifig self through the Vézère Valley [Instructions]

The vintage French Ghostbusters-themed Citroën DS we featured here a few days ago was certainly adorable, but what if you want to build your own early 1970’s LEGO Citroën DS? Creator OutBricks comes to the rescue with step-by-step instructions for the DS on which he based his “Ecteau-un”.

Citroen DS

You can see the builder explain how to build your own LEGO Citroën DS, as well as what parts you need, in this tutorial video.

TBB Weekly Brick Report: LEGO news roundup for April 23, 2017 [News]

In addition to the best LEGO models created by builders from everywhere on the planet, The Brothers Brick also keeps you up to date with the most timely and relevant LEGO news and reviews. This is our weekly Brick Report for the third week of April 2017.

LEGO reviews on TBB

TBB NEWS, REVIEWS & INSTRUCTIONS: It’s been a bit of a slower news week here at The Brothers Brick, with a flurry of last-minute building by several of our team members heading north to attend BrickCan. Nevertheless, the rest of the team has been busy bringing all our readers up to date LEGO news and reviews, as well as the best LEGO models we can find.

OTHER LEGO NEWS: There’s a lot of news out there we choose not to bring you as it happens, but that doesn’t mean that it didn’t happen. Here’s the rest of what happened in the LEGO world this week.

  • HIspaBrick Magazine 027 available for download now, HispaBrick Magazine – Our good friends in Spain have published the latest English and Spanish editions of their free online magazine, with features on the 40th anniversary of LEGO Technic, interviews with several LEGO employees, a review of the new UCS Snowspeeder, and more.
  • Grown-up LEGO fans blocked from playground in Melbourne, The Guardian – The first LEGOLAND Discovery Centre opened in Australia, and AFOLs are raising a hue and cry that they can’t go in when not accompanying a child. (This is in fact normal practice, and other Discovery Centers in the rest of the world hold after-hours “adults only” events just for local AFOLs.)
  • The LEGO Movie sequel rumors & spoilers have begun, Gizmodo – The guys at Giz talked to Chris Pratt about the new Guardians of the Galaxy movie, and asked a few questions about the sequel to 2014’s The LEGO Movie.
  • How to become a LEGO Master Builder, Popular Science – Erik Varszegi shares four simple steps on how to get the dream job he has designing monumental LEGO creations seen by millions around the world.
  • Brick Fest Live in Philadelphia, CBS Philly – BrickCan wasn’t the only LEGO event that happened this weekend. Check out this news coverage of Brick Fest Live.

All aboard the Zagreb Funicular!

Probably thanks to perceptions created by movies like Wes Anderson’s The Grand Budapest Hotel, I’ve always thought that funiculars were somehow a uniquely European mode of transportation. Although that’s not actually the case, they definitely have a certain Old World, vaguely steampunk vibe — reinforced by the fact that many of them were first built in the 19th century. Croatian builder Sven Franic has lovingly recreated the Zagreb Funicular, a tram that takes passengers up a relatively short incline in his hometown.

Uspinjaca Funicular

See more photos of this wonderful, working LEGO funicular

The Sisyphean labors of Rey

Establishing himself as a master of customization and variation, Pangeran Panda, whose Imperial Carousel and BB-8 variations we featured recently, has created a version of Jason Allemann’s kinetic Sysyphus sculpture inspired by The Force Awakens. The base features Rey lounging in front of her crashed AT-AT home, while the upper sculpture shows Rey pushing BB-8 along.

P4140360

Like Jason’s original, the figure’s legs “walk” and BB-8’s body rocks back and forth.

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Tiny LEGO Mac built from Rasperry Pi with e-paper display

One of my favorite custom LEGO kits of all time is Chris McVeigh’s Mac, but German programmer Jannis Hermanns has gone one step farther by building a tiny Apple Macintosh classic case from LEGO around a Rasperry Pi Zero with an e-paper display and Wi-Fi running Docker.

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Jannis says in his blog post that he designed the case in LEGO Digital Designer, ordered the bricks (upon which he performed some rather shocking customizations to fit the display), and inserted the electronics he’d programmed himself.

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The whole thing — LEGO, e-paper display, Rasperry Pi, power supply, and Apple stickers — cost barely over $100, and Jannis provides detailed instructions on his website if you want to build your own.

Goku takes on Frieza in the Battle on Namek

Given the popularity of the manga and animated series, it’s surprising how few LEGO creations we see inspired by Dragonball Z. David Liu corrects this oversight with an adorable pair of custom BrickHeadz featuring Goku in his “Super Saiyan” form battling Frieza in his “100% Full Power” form on the planet Namek. Goku’s spiky golden hair is perfect, and the inverted purple cheese slopes add exactly the right detail to make the evil Frieza instantly recognizable.

Battle on Namek

Allons dans le Ecteau-un de Ghostbasteur!

We’ve seen plenty of LEGO Ecto-1’s from Ghostbusters over the years, including not one but two official LEGO sets. Answering the question, “What if the Ghostbusters had franchised their organization on a global scale?”, OutBricks carries the iconic vehicle across the Atlantic with a customized version of his own LEGO Citroën DS design. The builder says “Dr. Romain Sétant gives Monsieur Marchemelleaux the final shot…” leaving to the viewer’s imagination what a Gallic incarnation of the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man would look like.

Le Ecteau-un de Ghostbasteur

LEGO Go board provides more possible outcomes than atoms in the universe

Despite spending the first fifteen years of my life in Japan and living in the same city as one of the largest Go clubs in North America, I’ve really only admired the ancient game of Go from afar. I’ll need to correct that someday, perhaps by building one of my own Go boards from LEGO, as Kadigan did. The 17×17 board takes advantage of the tiny gaps between LEGO tiles, with 1×1 round tiles as the black and white playing pieces. He’s even created realistic wooden bowls from ball turret bases.

Go (圍棋)

If you liked this, you might also appreciate the 9×9 LEGO Go board built by Joe Miller a couple years ago.

Thales Orbital Defence Orcinus Class PAD Gunboat

Immersed in and inspired by a broad range of innovative source materials in sci-fi — from novels and short stories to TV and video games — builders of LEGO space creations have no boundaries to their creativity. Tromas proves this by not only building a chunky, believable starfighter but also giving it a chunky, believable name with a chunky, believable backstory. This gunboat sports a massive quad cannon toward the rear, with lovely orange stripes on a white hull. The reclined cockpit configuration has a viewport built from a transparent hexagonal wing piece integrated among wedge plates. But what really draws the eye are all the little technical details around the edge — not your usual gray greebles, but hyper-realistic black and gold thrust nozzles, white sensor arrays, spots of sand green, and more.

Thales Orbital Defence Orcinus Class PAD Gunboat

The rear includes no less detail, with primary engines that match the color scheme of the small directional nozzles.

Check out more pictures of this great spaceship after the jump

“Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back” – the final cut

You’re welcome to add your own joke about George Lucas meddling with the Original Trilogy as he cranked out the Prequel Trilogy, but I love Star Wars again so I’ll leave that to the unrepentant cynics. The last LEGO creation we featured by Kit Bricksto brought the wonderful planets of the Star Wars universe to the garden. The builder continues his strong streak with this utterly unique diorama featuring tiny scenes from The Empire Strikes Back on a brick-built film strip set against a larger Hoth hangar scene in a TV. The potted background ties this latest build to Kit’s previous build.

IDSMO - Final Cut

Zed gets taken to the curb like the trash that he is

It feels like years since we’ve featured brightly colored zombie-fighting vehicles, so I’m rather pleased by this “apocafied” garbage truck built by Guy Smiley. Not only do all the great post-apocalyptic add-ons work wonderfully — the slatted front windscreen, the spikes, gun turret, and roof rack with sun shade — the underlying truck is excellent, particularly the trash can lift mechanism.

Zombie Trasher

Guy says he built this for a zombie-themed contest, so I hope we see more excellent vehicles like this in the coming weeks, though Guy has certainly set the bar high for other builders!

Neo-Tokyo from Akira in LEGO microscale

A few years ago, I built a microscale version of Tokyo, complete with rampaging kaiju. While Marco Gan‘s microscale Tokyo is considerably less colorful, it accurately captures the view of Neo-Tokyo seen in the 1988 Japanese animated movie Akira (and Katsuhiro Otomo’s original manga version that ran between 1982 and 1990). The monochrome cityscape is built on a simple blue baseplate, but includes a density of detail, from the bridge spanning the two halves of the city to a proliferation of landscape fragments.

AKIRA_2019 Neo-Tokyo Tetsuo City-2

To tie his build to its inspiration, Marco also included a small backdrop with brick-built lettering spelling “AKIRA” with pops of red reminiscent of Kaneda’s bike. But it’s not until you view the diorama from a higher angle that you discover Marco has also recreated the distinctive outline of the bay from the original comic, representing a screaming human head.