Category Archives: Building Techniques

Not sure what SNOT is? Want to learn innovative new ways to create awesome LEGO models of your own? Peruse our posts about LEGO building techniques to pick up tricks & tips from the best.

Dale Horvath’s RV from The Walking Dead in LEGO [Instructions]

While Dale may not get to enjoy his retirement driving around the country with his wife in an RV, we can all enjoy this great LEGO rendition of his iconic vehicle from the first two seasons of The Walking Dead, built by hachiroku24. The builder has included numerous key details, including all the gear Dale needs on his roof to keep watch over the survivors’ camp. I particularly like the rolled up awning.

Dale's RV from The Walkind Dead (with instructions)

If you want to build your own LEGO version of Dale’s RV, the builder has provided step-by-step instructions in the following video.

Behind on sending Christmas cards? Use this LEGO Mindstorms plotter to make them for you!

There are only a few days left until Christmas, so anything that saves you time is a good thing. Thankfully, 14-year-old Sanjay Seshan and his 12-year-old brother Arvind built the Holiday Card Plott3r to help in all your Christmas card needs.

Built and powered by LEGO Mindstorms, the plotter can churn out cards decorated with trees, snowflakes and even Santa’s signature. The creation prints the designs using a dot-matrix and even includes a second contraption that slides out an envelope ready for your beautiful, new card.

Better yet, the project files are all online to be used or improved. That is really in the Christmas spirit! Now we just need a machine that licks and applies stamps and drops the cards off at the post office.

LEGO Flowers built using bananas, Bart Simpson’s head and a croak of green frogs

At first look, these flowers by Theo Guilia look rather nice. They are made from LEGO but nothing too strange or odd about their appearance from afar. The reality is that they are both made up of parts that would not be a first choice for creating a flower in the hands of most builders. The sunflower petals are bananas, the central portion of the sunflower is an afro hairpiece and the leaves are a mix of elf hats and green frogs. It sounds more like a recipe for witch’s brew than the parts to build a LEGO sunflower!

Untitled

The second flower is a pretty blue cornflower. It uses Bart Simpson’s head as the central portion of the flower with the old-style plastic capes as petals. Those elf hats make another appearance as leaves to complete the flower. How strangely effective.

Flower by ...Alego

LEGO certainly brings out the creativity in people. I’ll never look at an elf hat the same way again…

Classic Space Command Module Crawling Thingie

Bongobert has created a retro looking classic space styled crawling command module rover whatsit. It’s caterpillar treads look like they could tear up whatever planet, moon or asteroid it was stationed on. This creature-like rover sits high allowing the pilots better visibility and better reception for the TV News-van’s worth of antennas and dishes on the roof. The DenWad has a crane apparatus capable of removing the command module, presumably allowing the vehicle itself to trek out in search of space things while the command module commands. Packed with tools to enable the astronauts to repair their monster in the field, this whatchamacallit looks like it could handle anything space could throw at it.

Modern part usage, subtle greebling and other newer techniques give it a futuristic feel while the exposed studs give the classic space feel that makes me (us?) nostalgic for the early 80s.

Check out what this marvelous little classic space machine creature is capable of.

Anyone up for Butterbeer?

If you need a break from fighting Dementors, you can always retreat to the cozy respite of Hagrid’s hut. Wookieewarrior crafts this iconic building from Harry Potter using tiles and plates to simulate the detailed texture of a cobblestone wall. The landscape is quite sophisticated as well, featuring four shades of green and parts we don’t see often such as tan levers used for grass.

Hagrid´s Hut

A handy way to build the Eiffel Tower

The official LEGO Eiffel Tower 10181 set is one of the largest sets released, with 3428 parts.  For those with less room for such a monster set or fewer pennies to afford such a sizeable price-tag, have a look at LegoJale‘s latest creation, which users a single part depicting the Eiffel Tower: A minifig hand. This microscale build manages to capture the essence of the Eiffel Tower, the skyline in the background, and the fountains in the foreground (as per the image that the build is based upon) with just a handful of parts.

Paris

The set-up for this shot shows how distancing parts of the build can give a very good foreground and background feel to the final shot without requiring any scaling. I always enjoy seeing set-up shots and this one is great because there is no fancy equipment — just LEGO, a book, and a camera.

Paris - Behind The Scenes

When LEGO meets Lite Brite

This pixilated classic space logo by Jonathan Gale is one of the most impressive LEGO creations I have seen in a long time. If you look closely, you’ll see that his build is made up of thousands of LEGO lightsaber blades (5520 of them to be exact). There is an LED light behind the blades, giving the translucent pieces a glowing effect.

Lego Space Logo Tile Top

Jonathan said he was inspired to try this building technique after a LUG meeting where he realized that 25 LEGO lightsaber blades fit perfectly into a 2×2 stud square. This build took over 10 hours to complete and, according to the builder, came with a constant and serious risk of collapse. I can’t even imagine the amount of patience it took Jonathan to complete this beast.

Lego Classic Space Logo Closeup

ASW-G-08 Gundam Barbatos Lupus

LEGO mecha builder Caleb L. has celebrated the new season of Mobile Suit Gundam Iron-Blooded Orphans by posting this lanky Gundam with a big sword and curvy horns.

ASW-G-08 Gundam Barbatos Lupus

The mecha is fully poseable, prepared to whack all comers with the aforementioned big giant sword.

ASW-G-08 Gundam Barbatos Lupus

I’m always fascinated by the underlying frames that LEGO mecha builders design as the skeletons for their big stompy robots. Caleb’s frame uses lots of clip connections with pneumatic T’s, and a ton of studs-out bricks (“Travis” bricks, headlight bricks, and so on) to affix the mecha’s skin.

ASW-G-08 Gundam Barbatos Lupus

Enlightening LEGO antique street lamps

Judging by his latest builds, Jonas Kramm must be preparing for the darkness of those long winter nights. His three decorative antique street lamps are designed around a selection of parts that are being examined in more detail over on parts-obsessed blog New Elementary. The first lamp is my favourite and shows an inspired use for the Mini Pony Tail in Black but special mention must go to the lamp on the right, as Jonas has definitely shown a fresh use for the paint-roller and tassel.

TheNewBlack - Lamps

If you want to read more from Jonas about his techniques and parts used for these builds, Jonas’ lamps are the first in a series of posts using a fun selection of new parts on New Elementary.

How to construct the Avalonian Countryside trees [Instructions]

Sometimes it is easy to see how a builder created a particular LEGO build, while at other times a build requires a bit of breakdown and perhaps even a tutorial if there are ‘hidden’ techniques. Last week we blogged this fantastic microscale LEGO countryside diorama from Full Plate, with beautiful fall foliage and crops ready for harvest.

Avalonian Countryside (9 of 9)

The builder, Emil Lidé, has responded to questions about the creation of his trees with this fantastic tutorial to help you create your own. First, he starts with a layout of the parts required for the green trees.

Microscale Tree Mini-tutorial (1 of 5)

Next, Emil shows how the trunk is built using a six-pronged flower stem to ‘hang’ the main foliage. The foliage in this example uses a mix of 1×2 plates and 2×2 round plates.

Continue reading

Ask for help from an adult if you need to use sharp cutting tools

Nobu_tary‘s photo stream is a bizarre repository, storing a steampunk gun, a chunky knight, (my personal favourite) a delicious yummy slice of pizza and many more brilliant extraordinary ideas — extraordinary to the point when you stop guessing a certain LEGO piece or the way it is attached to other pieces, but start admiring the way the builder sees the world around them.

These nippers are the cutting edge of LEGO building. Useless tail pieces from Ben 10 finally get a second chance as plier handles, completed with some smart use of a couple of Technic connectors and small claws. And I can’t wait what all those gray pieces will be once they are painted and glued together…

Diagonal Plastic Cutting Pliers