LEGO’s infamous monorail system has been the source of many questions about it’s potential return over the years. In fact, when I spoke with ex-CEO Bali Padda last year he said one of the most common questions he faced from fans was “when will LEGO bring back the monorail?“. While the monorail system is increasingly expensive to buy on the secondary market, Julius von Brunk has created a microscale version that is both easier on the wallet and adorable. The introduction of curved tiles has made this type of build cleaner and perhaps a little easier, but there’s a lot to admire in this instantly recognisable mini version.
Purists look away now, as we go inside the mind of self-proclaimed LEGO outlaw Randy Sluder and see some of the innovative building he is doing around the LEGO monorail system. Randy calls himself an outlaw because he’s not afraid to cut, drill, sand, and glue to create shapes LEGO never made. However, even he has lines he won’t cross — he only uses genuine LEGO bricks and the same glue LEGO themselves use on their large display models!
TBB: So Randy, tell us a little about yourself…
Randy: I’m a graphic artist by trade and have always liked the Art Deco style, so I gravitated to the Streamliner period of trains between 1935-1955. It was a time when “form follows function” wasn’t in vogue, the emphasis was on great design. And many people don’t know that Art Deco train design was as important to the movement as the architecture.
TBB: Where does your interest in monorail trains come from?
Randy: All my life I’ve been able to hear the sound of a train, at night, no matter where I’ve lived, and because I’m a wannabe “rail fan”, and a LEGO geek! What started as a fun project for the grandkids has blossomed into a cottage industry. In building a track for them I thought it would be nice to have a few more monorails. In researching LEGO monorail designs I found most were childish, block-type designs with the better ones made from current LEGO train bodies. Nobody was designing alternate vehicles for the LEGO monorail system. So after a lot of interesting research, I started creating trains for the monorail track.
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