Airships are one of the hardest types of aircraft to model accurately in LEGO. As a result, a good steampunk dirigible is a creation to be treasured. This fabulous sky pirates model by Thomas van Urk is a classic — a collection of steampunk staples (chequered envelope, boat-styled gondola, unlikely cannon-based armament) that soars effortlessly, somehow avoiding the risk of being grounded by genre tropes.
Whilst a sepia-tinted image is de rigeur for a steampunk vessel, this baby looks excellent in new-fangled colour. That red and black gas envelope is a stunner — the result of careful shaping using Mixel ball-and-socket joints, according to Thomas. The integration of the boat-hull gondola and domed pilot’s station is really nice too.
Lastly, don’t miss the elaborate rigging which runs all over the model. It’s touches like this which really elevate (!) this creation above its peers…
As holiday season approachs, No Starch Press is kicking into high gear with a slew of new titles for LEGO fans. Their latest offering is Steampunk LEGO by well-known LEGO builder, innovator and steampunk enthusiast Guy Himber. This 200 page compilation features the work of over 90 individual builders, and includes just about every notable LEGO steampunk creation of the past five years.
Physically, the book has a definite steampunk feel about it. Its blue and gold hard cover sports a full-color dust jacket (shown here) and all the pages have a high quality satin finish that enhances the sumptuous graphic design. The material is presented in the form an ornate Victorian scrapbook, complete with notelets and other trinkets mounted atop a variety of textured vintage backgrounds.
A cornucopia of building styles are covered here. And while the majority are mini-fig oriented, microscale and life-size builds are reasonably well represented. Entries are 1 or 2 to a page, and organized into logical chapters focusing on different categories such as trains, vehicles, automatons, weapons, sea vessels, airships and even floating rocks. There is also a pleasant ‘interlude’ in the center, showcasing Guy’s memorable Cabinet of Curiosities collaborative project.
When we featured Castor Troy‘s collection of Vampire Hunter steampunk vehicles back in June, the French builder was still hard at work on the centerpiece, the Vampire’s castle. Well now the diorama is complete! And what a whopper this impenetrable-looking Gothic masterpiece is…
Ever wondered what a steampunk SWAT team bust would look like? Well, I think it might look a little something like this charmingly titled diorama by Logan (captaininfinity), “The Grand Arrest of Professor Filius Bertram.” It’s not every day we get a cool steampunk diorama that includes an airship, a tank, and a legged vehicle, all of which come together with the help of copious quantities of earth-toned elements.
Continuing my Steampunk vibe from earlier in the week, here’s the mother of all LEGO airships by French builder Castor Troy…
Now a mothership is nothing without proper air and ground support. Fortunately, Castor has already thought of that. Say hello to Vampire Hunter …which incidentally sounds like the perfect premise for LEGO to use if they ever wanted to get into the Steampunk game!
Apparently these are part of a much larger Vampire Hunter project that will include a French chateau, haunted house, and plenty of hunters. Look out for that some time next year. In the meantime, keep your holy water and silver bullets handy. And wooden stakes. And garlic. Ok, did I forget anything? And hand mirrors. And crucifixes…
I’ve seen a lotta great steampunk flying machines and airships built from LEGO. But this is the first time I recall seeing anyone build a steampunk starship! Here we see the USS Steambucket by Tim Schwalf reaching for the stars, in a wonderful brick-built cloud of steam.
LEGO steampunk fans should really check out Tim’s Flickr stream. While there may not be a huge number of builds up there (yet), every one of them is a keeper.
Guy H. (V&A Steamworks) built this beauty, which heavily employs aftermarket parts. It’s a gorgeous piece of art, and a terrific Eastern take on the usually European steampunk theme, but it does cause me to wonder: just how much of a model can be aftermarket parts before it stops being a “LEGO creation”? Whatever you decide, I hope Guy builds more stuff like this.
Vince Toulouse has found a use for the massive ship’s hull that comes in Cragger’s Command Ship — turn it upside down and make it the body of a magical airship.
The narrow seam or gap between the lower gray section of the hull and the large olive-green section adds a nice detail, and I can certainly imagine all that magical electricity buzzing this thing through the clouds.
Via twee affect.
Airships with houses on them are just plain fun — implying a life of endless adventure among the clouds. Luis Baixinho has created this delightful vessel for his own OutroMundo theme. I love the nets tying down the cargo, but my favorite detail is the tile roof of the cabin.
Luis has been creating the people, places, and vehicles of OutroMundo since 2004, so be sure to check out lots more good stuff on Flickr.
This steampunk airship by Daniel García (Evo) may have the most unique shape I’ve seen in quite a while.
As cool as the airships that look like, well, ships are, there’s nothing to say that they have to look like ocean-going vessels with propellors or balloons tacked on. With underslung cannons and a prow that goes on forever, Heracles looks like it was designed to ply the clouds (nice touch, by the way) of an unrealized steampunk past.
Steampunk master, Rod Gillies, just posted a very sleek airship, which he has christened The Blue Cat. I really like that hull design…
According to Daniel Garcia (Evo), the airship Hermes was the first to be built by the Royal Navy, but was promptly stolen by pirates.
Most steampunk airships look like, well, flying ships, but Daniel’s ship has an unusual shape like an enormous flying catamaran.