Peel Engineering on the Isle of Man in the Irish Sea manufactured the P50 microcar at the height of Mod fashion in the heyday of “Swinging London.” Vimal Patel (vmln8r on Flickr) has lovingly handcrafted a beautiful blue LEGO P50 that’s fully motorized, with great curves that make the little “bubble car” instantly recognizable.
After building two huge 1/16 Diesel locomotives, one of which we blogged in February, Dennis Glaasker (Bricksonwheels) has turned his attention to something rather more old-school: a Union Pacific 1941 `Big Boy’ steam engine.
Its scale is 1/38, based on LEGO’s track gauge. This is relatively small by Dennis’ standards, but the model is still more than 1 m long and took two and half months to build. The engine can run, albeit not on standard radius curves, and to get it to run, Dennis chose to include several custom and aftermarket parts. The wheels and the valve gear and side rods were 3D printed by Jaap Kroon (JaapTechnic). The model is driven by three (!) Power Functions XL motors, controlled through an SBrick and powered by a rechargeable RC battery pack. To top it all off, this behemoth is equipped with lights and electronics supplied by Brickstuff. Purists may be horrified by this cornucopia of high-tech non-LEGO parts, but I think it’s hard to deny that the end result is impressive.
One of our traditions for TBB contributors attending BrickCon every year is to enjoy inexpensive sushi at one of the two nearby revolving sushi (回転寿司) joints. If you’ve never been to a revolving sushi restaurant, you grab small plates of sushi from a conveyer built that moves around a counter that surrounds the prep area. It’s fun and delicious! Japanese builder Dr.Peisan has used LEGO Power Functions to motorize a revolving sushi restaurant.
Built on four 32×32 baseplates, the restaurant is full of funny scenes and interesting characters. There’s a group of aliens (the ultimate gaijin) tasting earth food, a reporter using a fake mic, Emmet from The LEGO Movie, and even BB-8. I expect the sumo wrestler to give the lucha libre guy a run for his money… I’m personally most impressed by the wide range of different nigiri, rolls, and desserts that roll by.
Since mid-October I have had a pretty crazy time at work, very much at the expense of my blogging and pretty much everything else. I have built a few things, but I told my fellow contributors that I would only write something if it knocked my socks off. Well, consider me barefoot. The culprit is Swiss builder Beat Felber and his AR-1200M Mobile Crane. Tadano is a Japanese manufacturer of cranes and the model carries a Japanese livery, of the Showa Co., Ltd. of Kobe. This already makes it a bit more interesting than your average Liebherr. Furthermore, as you would expect from a builder who goes by the name Engineering with ABS, his model is full of working features.
It uses Power functions for the drive, for steering on all five axles and to extend the stabilisers on both sides, with pneumatics used to raise and lower the struts. The crane boom can be raised, slewed and extended using Power Functions and, of course, the winches are remote-controlled. It also has working lights. The boom reaches a height of 2.15 m (more than 7 ft.) and can be extended even further by adding a separate jib. This is not the tallest crane we’ve ever blogged, but size is not everything. It is gorgeous.
Sariel shows his Power Functions mastery yet again with this motorized model of Kaneda’s Bike from Akira. The model features remote-control steering, working lights and even a dauntless driver who you get to find out by watching the video below. You can learn more about this project from the builder’s website.
Most truck builders I know either aim for looks, with relatively little functionality, or they go for the full Technic treatment, with lots of working functions, but often at the expense of the looks or details. With his Mack Granite heavy-duty truck, Ingmar Spijkhoven (2LegoOrNot2Lego) has combined the best of both worlds.
It has Power Functions remote control for the drive and steering, working lights and working suspension, and can be fitted with a flatbed trailer than can be raised and lowered via remote control. It also looks brilliant, with a beautifully sculpted hood, a detailed interior and a carefully modelled representation of the engine.
Following fellow Dutch truck builder Dennis Glaasker the presentation of the all the goodies is top notch too, with a clever photo-edit that shows some of the inner workings and details. It wouldn’t look out of place in the manufacturer’s brochure.
Polish Lego builder Michał Skorupka (Eric Trax) made a functional Claas Jaguar forage harvester featuring rotating cutting discs, lights, RC function with steering and more. Check out the YouTube video to see this amazingly realistic model in action.
The mastermind of RC Lego vehicles, Sariel, built a RC batpod featuring steering and lights. The genius lies in incorporating function into such a small model. Check out the video below to see it in action.
Check out this Kickstarter project by Mark Bollobas that introduces a Lego-compatible smart brick that lets you control your power-function vehicles with a smartphone via bluetooth.
It’s even more visually pleasing to watch a GBC with a theme. This creation by IamKritch is worth a look. The first second of the video is enough to get me hooked.
This monster construction vehicle by Technic guru pipasseyoyo is a complex blend of Technic engineering and skillful brick sculpting. The articulated dump truck is fully controlled by remote and features a tipping bed, six-wheel drive, and powered articulated steering. Be sure to check out the video of it in action.