Unlike many of my childhood friends, I’ve never been fond of motorcycles. Well, some of them look cool and I heard some of them are really fast but while all of my mates spent hours drooling over pictures of bikes in auto magazines I was pretty content with a huge yellow pneumatic tractor from LEGO Technic on a table in my room. And now, 15 years later, here I am, feasting my eyes on the new LEGO Technic 42063 BMW R 1200 GS Adventure on my table, thinking that I’ve been missing something in my life till this very moment. Although there have been plenty of LEGO Technic motorcycles before it, this 603-piece beauty is the first licensed motorcycle released, and the retail price of $59.99 / 49.99€ makes this BMW a solid bargain among all the licensed LEGO Technic sets.
Reviewing a BMW R 1200 GS set gives a lot of opportunity for reflection upon the licensed models in the Technic theme, as well as comparing them to the old Model Team sets, and this is what I’d planned to base my review on until I got my hands on the set. The problem is this BMW doesn’t need to be compared to other bikes, cars, or cranes. It stands out against every other 2017 Technic set. Its announcement was highlighted by several official press releases, emphasizing that this bike is a self-contained and stand alone model. It’s not a primarily meant as toy, nor is it merely a sophisticated mechanism or a dodgy Technic machine by Billund’s designers. Rather, it’s a decent, scaled copy of a BMW motorcycle made of Technic pieces — and this is what makes it genuinely beautiful.
This week there are several deals on LEGO Star Wars, Ninjago, Technic, Chima and LEGO Elves. There are also still great deals on LEGO Dimensions Packs!
LEGO Ninjago Temple of Airjitzu is 20% off, currently listed at $159.99.
Adding to the new LEGO Technic sets for 2017 unveiled last fall, LEGO unveiled several new Technic sets at Toy Fair New York earlier today. All of the new sets will be available in August 2017.
42070 6×6 All Terrain Tow Truck will retail for $289.99 and includes 1,862 pieces, including Power Functions elements.
See more 2017 LEGO Technic sets unveiled at Toy Fair
Berthil van Beek loves making some of the coolest LEGO machines around. Just a few week ago we highlighted his awesome LEGO ball maze that accelerates balls to 1,000 rpm, and he’s already back having spent more than 100 hours designing another breathtaking creation. This time, it’s an undulating wave of LEGO colors featuring 38 distinct swatches from LEGO’s palette (a palette that’s changing over the years).
Like Berthil’s ball maze, this mechanism is designed to fit with the Great Ball Contraption standard, fitting end-to-end with other fans’ creations for continual movement of LEGO’s tiny soccer balls and basketballs. Berthill tells us he was inspired to create the rainbow wave machine after seeing the vibrant rainbow of colors in the official image of LEGO’s Creator XXXL Box, which he also used a source for many of the colored bricks.
The Rainbow Wave Great Ball Contraption uses about 1,150 pieces and is powered by a single motor, with each of the colored pistons sitting on an 8-tooth gear. Each piston’s gear is exactly 1 tooth offset from its neighbors, and this means the balls travel in a perfectly level line as they move across the waving surface. Berthil says this mechanism took a lot of testing and redesigning to perfect, in particular because digital prototyping with LEGO rendering programs isn’t feasible for complicated moving machinery.
Germany’s Nuremberg Toy Fair is the largest Toy Fair in the world, and where toy manufacturers go to show off their new products to potential buyers. As in previous years, LEGO has a large presence with a lot of new sets. Thanks to our friends at Promobricks, we’re able to bring you the first look at some of what LEGO has planned for the rest of the year, including Architecture, Creator, Technic, City and more. In a few weeks we’ll be covering the New York Toy Fair and bringing you close-up, hands-on coverage of these new sets and more.
LEGO Architecture 2017
Don’t miss other upcoming LEGO sets we’ve announced, including:
Summer wave of The LEGO Batman Movie sets
21035 Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Marvel & DC Superheroes LEGO Brick Headz
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 LEGO sets
Click to see the rest of the new sets
If you’ve never heard of a Great Ball Contraption (or GBC for short), you’ve probably never been to a LEGO convention. The term describes a popular theme of complicated LEGO machines built by fans, which can interconnect to continually pass LEGO soccer balls and basketballs around in a mesmerizing fashion, and they’re a mainstay of LEGO fan conventions. This particular GBC is built by Berthil van Beek, who was inspired after seeing another fan’s marble run. Berthil’s machine shoots the tiny balls up to the top of the run, where they hurtle down and are recycled.
This fantastic architectural build by Miroslaw is a 1:125 scaled version of Spodek, a huge multipurpose arena in Katowice, Poland. Spodek means “saucer” in Polish and refers to the flying saucer appearance of this huge structure which seems to defy some of the laws of LEGO gravity. Achieving a circular structure is hard, achieving a stable but tilting structure is even harder,but to combine a circular structure that has a tilt and also an inverted sloped roof must require some feat of engineering. What sorcery is this!
See more of this unique LEGO build
Sariel has long since been a regular feature on this site with impressive Technic and Power Functions builds such as a motorised Kaneda’s bike from Akira and a remote controlled Batpod.
Now the builder’s newest creation — an RC car modeled after the Pagani Huayra — is sure to make petrol heads like myself happy. While it may not be a purist build (it uses 3D printed covers to simulate a new rim design as well as aftermarket chromed pieces) it’s still an amazing model and all the functioning and structural bits are LEGO.
Particularly impressive are the awesome features of the build such as the “aero flaps” which flip up in unison with the front steering as well as the rear wheel drive propulsion with a transmission. Sariel gives a lot more information on how he built this car, including pictures of partial breakdowns on his website.
Godzilla is an iconic beast who first appeared in Ishirō Honda‘s 1954 film Godzilla and has remained a feature of Japanese pop culture ever since. There have been many builders who have created a LEGO Godzilla, but this version by 62778grenouille really caught my attention. Firstly, it’s huge. And secondly, it has been built in the most extraordinary manner, using Technic parts that seem to flow into the shape of Godzilla.
See more photos of this massive LEGO monster
While the 42056 Porsche 911 GT3 RS is an amazing collector’s item, there’s no denying that it makes a fantastic parts pack, especially with all those orange Technic panel pieces. František Hajdekr has used those panels in a unique way, fashioning them into a cordless drill hammer.
If you look closely at the build, you may notice the Technic power functions XL-Motor. This isn’t a flashy model; under all those orange panels is a working mechanism that causes the chisel to move back and forth. While it might not help you in your next home improvement project, it’s certainly a fun idea! You can see it in action below:
Have you ever wondered how Sith Lords stay fit? No? Me neither. But Slovenian builder MajklSpajkl appears to have. His hilarious kinetic sculpture uses a modified 75111 Darth Vader LEGO set, with less rigid joints. The mechanism is simple in principle, but it works perfectly. Having seen this functioning live at some recent LEGO events in Slovenia, I must say my feelings for it are complicated. At first I felt mildly amused, but the longer I watched it, the more I loved it. And this really is the charm of MajklSpajkl’s MOC: it is built with relatively simple techniques and mechanisms, but what it lacks in complexity it more than makes up for in originality and humour.
And here is a video of it in action, for your viewing pleasure:
As 2016 comes to an end, we wanted to take a moment and look at some of the most popular news posts this year. What theme made the most appearances on our list? Who took the number one spot? Where does 10255 Assembly Square fall on our list? Read on to find out!
Click through to read the rest of our countdown!