When you think of Harley-Davidson, you probably think of growling fat hogs that guzzle gas and leak oil. But Tong Xin Jun has seen the future of Harleys and it is bright and clean. What you are looking at is a color-modded render utilizing some parts you wouldn’t readily think to use. You may recognize a Mindstorms EV3 Ultrasonic Sensor just over the front tire and Technic actuators act as shock absorbers. Unless there is a stash of odd-colored parts that I don’t know about, this sea-foam green, orange, white, pearl gold, light gray and dark gray combination can’t quite work in real brick with this model. Still, it is an inspired choice by the builder and lends to a sleek, futuristic feel to the bike.
Here is an alternate view better showcasing those transparent piston cylinders. It would be neat if motorcycle tires came in anything but black, but for now, computer rendering, photo manipulation, or some good old paint are the only ways to get that done.
Halloween is just around the corner and builder monstrophonic is bringing the spooky with this excellent rendition of Jack Skellington’s house. The Nightmare Before Christmas is one of my favorite holiday movies and it pulls double duty as either a Halloween or a Christmas movie. Of course in my house we watch it at both times. And sometimes, just because.
Tim Burton’s visual style is so unique and I was thrilled to see this pitch-perfect rendition of Jack’s kooky domicile. The skinny stone steps are just great and the builder’s skill in creating a building that seems to defy gravity is fantastic and not an easy feat. The tile work on the house and shingles of the roof give a nice ramshackle feeling to the whole thing. The chimney is wonderfully creative, being made from different sizes of barrels. All of the little details employed to flesh out the final look work beautifully including the yellow bat topper, a decorative window treatment utilizing printed Unikitty tails and the curvy supports on the front porch.
Read on for more eerie fun.
If you are a manga warrior in a mech suit, you are judged by two things. How tattered your cape is, and how big your sword is. By these criteria, this hulking mech suit inspired by the manga/anime Berserk, and brought to brooding LEGO life by Marco De Bon is winning top marks. And with boots sculpted out of this layered shield part, he looks like he’s also ready to kick butt in the battle of the metal mech bands.
The hands are a perfect size, with my favorite detail part, the ingot piece, and the interior looks pretty comfortable as well.
This tranquil LEGO scene from Damian Z. is a great way to highlight the real star, the tractor. The Polish Ursus C330 is a wonderful piece of work with lots of detail despite its small minifigure-scale size. A handful of common clips and other bits stand in for the engine details, while Technic pulley wheels work as the hubs to make tractor-like tires out of larger-scale racing tires.
One of the most memorable movies of my childhood was the 1963 stop-motion feature Jason and the Argonauts which features the work of animation master Ray Harryhausen. This pair of skeletons by Moko look like they jumped right out the movie, passing through a Terminator filter on the way out. The skulls, made from this Bionicle skull part, are a perfect choice, and those ribs made from a creature claw are great too.
For the past year, Peter Carmichael has been texting me updates about an Aquazone base he was building. We both grew up in the 90s, so the classic LEGO themes from that era are full of nostalgia for us, and I’m always excited to see old favorites get a new makeover. But Peter said his update to the 1995 set Neptune Discovery Lab wasn’t going to be a simple redux with modern elements, but something grander. At nearly 6 feet long and using more than 50,000 pieces, I think he delivered.
The highlight of the base is the working Aquazone monorail track, an idea LEGO contemplated in the 90s but never ultimately released. The track makes a large figure eight, winding through the central base before looping around the edges.
We all have LEGO rooms or at the very least a designated work-space to build our creations. One LEGO space I’d love to see is that of Mitsuru Nikaido. Sometimes it’s satisfying to have “a thing” and Mitsuru’s “thing” is white animal mechs with dark gray interspersed throughout. If Mitsuru is the type of builder who keeps most of his creations, I bet I’d be treated with a menagerie of intricate animal mechs peering at me from his shelves. This octopus is his newest and among my favorites thus far. Whether it be for a flared fender, hot-air balloon or, in this case, an octopus head, this tapered piece is a godsend. This wily cephalopod is certainly brimming with character. Be sure to check out some of his previously featured friends including a frog, a crocodile, and a locust and crane creature double-feature.
According to the Triassic Era LEGO gods who made this stuff up eons ago, a SHIP (Significantly Huge Investment in Parts) must measure at least 100 studs in any one direction. This craft by Filler Brick, aptly named The Disqualifier, measures in at precisely 99.9 studs. Close! So damned close! It would have been easy to take this creation to within specs but I get the hunch this builder liked being the underdog here. As someone who has often fallen short by a smidgen in so many different ways myself, I can relate. (Shut up, you!) Perhaps we could overlook its shortcomings with excellent presentation and the fact that this took thirty-one grueling days to build and somewhere between 3000-5000 pieces. It’s not about the size of the dog in the fight but rather the size of the fight in the dog. Or something. I’m feeling the love here, how about you?
Show of hands, who is watching the new “Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance” series on Netflix? Go ahead, put them up, I have Aughra’s eye and can see you. Wow, that is a lot of hands! The rest of you should get on that. Especially you, Matt Wilson of Topeka, Kansas, you’d totally be into it. With beautiful sets, masterful puppeteering and phenomenal voice talent, I am truly enthralled with the world of Thra all over again. Hongjun Youn has built a Skeksis that looks so accurate, you can almost hear them squabble and Chamberlain squeal. His ragged clothing is comprised of some of these cloth dragon wing parts. The head is so on par with the Skeksis you’d think LEGO had a license with Jim Henson’s Studio, but alas it is a Chima Vulture head. Now hold still while we drain your essence!
Thanks to regular building contests held by the LEGO Ideas team, hundreds of fantastic custom creations have seen the light in the recent couple of years. The Unleash Your Own Genetically Modified Hybrid Dinosaur! building competition gathered some of the craziest and funniest creatures of this summer. As we continue seeing some of the best entries as the builders share them elsewhere online, we can’t help but admire this hilarious Veggiesaurus by Scott Wilhelm.
Well, we know there were a lot of vegetarian dinosaurs, but a creature like a “vegetarian Tyrannosaurus” sounds like either a freak of nature or the triumph of modern science. Looking at the pictures of this foody, I tend to think it’s a win rather than a failure. A full-length picture of the T. rex reveal the actual size of the build; the furniture and table accessories elevate the work to a whole new level. And although this Tyrannosaurus rex looks very frustrated, I hope it will feel much better once he finishes his dinner.
True story; due to an epic storm, nearly 30,000 bath toys were lost at sea, many of them “rubber duckies” (they’re not really made of rubber). While unfortunate, this event lead oceanographers and beachcombers on an odyssey to discover these wayward bath toys around the globe, thus proving that the oceans and currents are truly connected. You may read about it yourself in this book. I wonder if one of these yellow duckies has washed up on Anthony Séjourné’s otherwise serene bridge diorama. The ducky is comically outsized leading me to believe it’ll either destroy that bridge kaiju-style or at the very least cause a massive clog. Either way, it has made my day.
Conspiracy theorists claim that the pyramids of various ancient civilizations were all inspired by aliens coming from outer space. Ancient peoples were clearly not smart enough to figure out engineering, they claim, so they must have had help from elsewhere. Plus, there are strange figures engraved on them, and how do you explain the striking resemblance of one pile of cut stones to another? I mean, compare those Egyptian pyramids to the Babylonian ziggurats and the Mayan temples. Exactly the same. And don’t forget the most conclusive evidence of all, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Well, builder Ivan Martynov provides us with some insight to solving the mystery. He has made an entry into SHIPtember that is both a space ship and an ancient temple.
There are the stairs to reach the summit, a shrine at the top, and what appears to be a six-legged beetle (or is that an alien form, carved crudely?). Then there are thrusters, power cores and other bits of advanced technology. It all makes perfect sense. This ship touched down in several places on Earth, inspired worship and emulation, and then left to visit other worlds. Do you believe the conspiracy theorists yet? Maybe you should.