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.
This elegant train, brought to us by Moko, is comprised of beautiful lines, delightful colors, and screams Steampunk. Or rather, given the refined nature of the train, perhaps it quietly states its Steampunk origins while giving a bit of side-eye out of a monocle. Either way, it’s gorgeous.
I particularly like the use of the One Ring to give nice color to the passenger car, between the windows, as well as on the engine. The gold, green, brown, and brass are a stunning color combination which make this train particularly eye catching.
I also invite you to read our original write-up of Moko’s matching Steampunk car and mech. It’s wonderful to finally have a family portrait!
There’s a real art in depicting decay and dilapidation in LEGO. The solid colors and straight lines of our favourite construction system tend not to lend themselves well to such subjects. But Maciej Drwiega has nailed it with this rusting rail truck. Smart color combinations and a clever sideways construction technique have created a convincing impression of battered and bruised metal.
Whilst I’m not really a train guy, I’d heartily recommend a visit to Maciej’s photostream, where you’ll find excellent photos of more lovely railway models and layouts. I particularly like the images shot with tilt-shift.
A train crashing over a collapsed wooden bridge is a classic Hollywood peril that we now get to see built in bricks thanks to W. Navarre. Many aspects of the model are built without using prefabricated parts such as the train tracks, train wheel chassis, and even the cow catcher on the front of the train. Check out more photos of this detailed creation on MOCpages.
One of the most famous crashes in rail history is captured in this build by monstrophonic. On 22nd October 1895 the Granville-Paris Express entered the Montparnasse station travelling too fast in an attempt to make up for lost time. It failed to stop and ploughed through the buffers, across the concourse, and out through the station wall. Amazingly only a single person was killed — a woman hit by falling masonry.
This would have been a great model on its own merits, but the fact it’s a compelling recreation of such a famous image just makes it all the better. Check out the original photograph and more information about the crash here.
Nefarious Blacktron forces may inhabit the remote reaches of space, but that doesn’t mean they lack sweet infrastructure. We’ve already brought you a peek at Stephan Niehoff’s take on Blacktron’s new battle tank, the Scorpion II, and now Stephan lets us get a good look at the sleek Rhino, Blacktron’s on-planet wartime materiel supply solution.
One of the biggest dilemmas that LEGO builders face is choosing between impressive appearance and complex functionality of their creations. LEGO pieces, although offering an enormous number of combinations, still place huge limits on the functionality and mobility of models. That’s why hitting on a sweet build complete with a video of functions in action excites me like nothing else. One of the best Latvian builders, de-marco, whose works are always especially neat and aesthetically beautiful, has shared a small diorama of an old rusty rail-road crane by the loading area.
Click through to see this crane in action
Current Iron Builder competitor Tim Schwalfenberg is chugging through the competition, having already completed seven builds. His most recent creation is this delightful microscale train scene. That pin connector looks great as a tank car. But I wonder what that tiny village needs two full tanks of. Gasoline? Milk? Mountain Dew Code Red? Tim’s packed a lot of detail into this small build — my favorites, other than the train itself, include the railroad crossing sign and that glorious gorge-spanning bridge.
I know lots of people who are constantly nagging about disproportional 6-studs-wide trains from official LEGO City sets. Now I have a solid argument: a mind-blowing 1:16 scale copy of the Union Pacific EMD SD70 ACe Locomotive. When Dennis G (bricksonwheels) finally posted pictures of the finished model, I mistook them for photos of a real locomotive. Just look at this beauty!
This EMD SD70 is just the second brick-built train by Dennis, who is much more famous as the author of alluring scaled copies of trucks. This time the locomotive is more than 56 inches long (140 cm) and consists of more than 27,000 pieces.
Click through to see more of this amazing train
According to Polish builder Mateusz Waldowski, the Newag 15D/16D is a broad-guauge diesel locomotive that’s a heavily modernized Polish version of the Soviet-era TEM2. With excellent color blocking and a couple of custom stickers, Mateusz has built a stunning LEGO version in PKP Cargo livery. I especially like Mateusz’s use of corner panels for the steps, and the angled cab windows.
See more photos of Mateusz’s locomotive in his album on Flickr.
Seattle builder Dave Sterling has built a LEGO version of London’s Charing Cross Railway Station as it appeared in the late-Victorian period. Dave’s creation formed part of an international collaboration entitled Around the World in 80 days which was displayed at Brickworld Chigaco. Dave has really captured the intricate details and elaborate exterior features representative of Victorian architecture.
A replica of the 70ft high Eleanor Cross was built in the forecourt of the station in 1865, and this is very nicely depicted in Dave’s build by the ornate tall ‘cross’ complete with tan microfigs, masonry bricks and arches.
Click here to learn more about this creation and hear from the builder
Talented multi-theme builder Joshua Brooks isn’t just about giant Waterloo dioramas and beautiful castle gardens, he’s also a solid train builder. His latest engine is an EMD SD40-2 locomotive in Burlington Northern livery that would look great as TBB livery as well. The railings and brick-built “BN” lettering on the engine are excellent details, while the setting gives the impression of the train speeding through the great American West.