Fabuland holds a beautiful place of reminisce for me and somehow Pete Strege seems to have encompassed that feeling in an incredible new LEGO creation. Billy Goat’s Steamboat is an incredible display of fine colour choice, confined motorisation and great shaping without compromising stability. The dark blue of the cabin walls and hull are framed nicely with white, while the rest of the colour wheel comes to life with a combination of dark azure and yellow. Though please don’t be fooled, take a closer look. Weaved throughout the yellow are trace amounts of bright light orange, which adds some real warmth to the model, as subtle as it may be. There is also a sublime amount of blue pinstriping, which tops off the build high up, with two blue half barrel containers.
Today we’re pleased to welcome Caleb Watson as a guest contributor to give a special introduction to his latest creation. We’ve featured some of his amazing models in the past such as the iconic ‘I am your Father’ Scene and the opening temple from Raiders of the Lost Ark. His newest model is starkly different from his past works being a chromosomal model designed for a project in his 11th-grade genetics class. He worked on this several-thousand-piece model for about two months and he explains his processes for designing it along with the scientific background behind the project.
The Building of an NF1 Chromosomal Model
By Caleb Watson
It’s no surprise that school is one of the biggest factors in my life that dictates how much time I’m able to build my LEGO models (along with friends, family, and running). As a result of this, I’m always looking for opportunities to integrate LEGO into what I need to do for school, which is how I came to build this model.
Right now, I’m wrapping up my junior year at Ballard High School in Seattle, and along with that, the final year of the three-year Biotechnology career pathway, a set of STEM-focused classes organized in a small cohort that takes biology, chemistry, and genetics. The first-semester project for genetics this year was to write a 9-page research paper covering everything about a genetic disease. I selected the disease Neurofibromatosis because it is quite common yet not well known, and has many interesting and unique attributes. For the second semester and capstone project of the Biotechnology Career Academy, we had to use the information we’d learned in our research papers to create a science project for the Student BioExpo at Shoreline Community College. Seeing the opportunity, I chose molecular modeling with the intent of building a LEGO model for my project. Continue reading
Who needs virtual reality when you can actually touch the players? Enter LEGO BOOST, some extra bricks, and the imagination of Japanese builder Nipe Nipe. Using adorably crafted characters and interchangeable backgrounds, the classic video game is brought to life on a circular conveyor belt.
This perfectly thought-out game is actually playable via a Bluetooth connection with a phone or tablet. The programming of the system is simple, but comes out looking terrific while in action. With the tap of the screen, you can play the levels of Super Mario Bros in 3D. Like the real game, you have to get the timing just right to avoid those pesky obstacles!
When you build something really interactive, you naturally want to show off how it works. At conventions you might spend a whole hour repeating a demo. Then another. And another. And another… Until you realize you haven’t eaten all day. Of course, leave it to Jason Allemann to find a truly impressive solution to this problem. After he and his wife’s arms got tired opening and closing the LEGO Ideas 21315 Pop-Up Book, she told him it was time to make an automated, page-turning bookstand. So he has! And it’s brilliant!
As usual, Jason has developed a genius and inspiring mechanism. Just watch the video for the full explanation of what’s going on behind the scenes of this elegant lectern. I don’t know about you, but I find it mesmerizing!
While you’re here, check out Jason’s excellent addition to LEGO Creator set 31088 Deep Sea Creatures!
Roller coaster parts had been a long time coming when they were finally released last year. I, personally, was someone begging for them, and was ecstatic when given the chance to review the LEGO Creator Expert 10261 Roller Coaster. Since then, it’s been cool to see what others have done with the track. This time, Daniel Church has built a super cool Steampunk monowheel. All the greebly bits create a lovely design, and the triangular signs and 2×3 pentagonal tiles finish it off well.
The best part is that it actually moves! Who doesn’t love a good LEGO build with movement? I hope the next task is to make it stand by itself and remote controlled!
One glance at this amazing LEGO Muppet creation by Andreas Keinbart and I can already hear Beaker frantically meep-meep-meeping. Based on the recurring Veterinarian’s Hospital setting from The Muppet Show, the huge multi-level motorized diorama features many of the beloved Muppet characters in brick form. Up top in the lab are Dr. Bunsen and Beaker, with Sweetums coyly hiding in the back.
Incredibly, many of the characters are animated with LEGO gears and motors. Beaker’s mouth, of course, opens and closes, and Sweetums peaks in then goes back into hiding.
Down below in the operating room are Dr. Bob (aka Rowlf), Nurse Piggy, and Nurse Janice, along with their patients, a rabbit, a chicken, and Baskerville the Hound. Continue reading
After wowing us with an amazing collaborative diorama of Cloud City, builder Caleb Watson has turned his skills to another classic Harrison Ford franchise, Indiana Jones. In this huge diorama, Indy runs through all the perils from the opening sequence of Raiders of the Lost Ark as he escapes the temple with the idol. But this diorama holds a secret: it’s completely motorized, with minifigure Indy actually dodging each of the traps.
Check out this video of the action as Indy makes his way through the temple, and then read about the details of how it works below.
With the new release of the LEGO Creator Expert 10261 Roller Coaster, we now have an all-out amusement park! It’s the piece of the puzzle we’ve long been waiting to add to the collection. On top of that, awesome builders are creating all kinds of fantastic rides to pair up with the Coaster, alongside the Fairground Mixer, Ferris Wheel, and Carousel. Lee Yung Chiu is one of those wonderful builders. His Pirate Ship Ride is a classic that just about anyone can identify with, and he did an excellent job.
Check out the video of it in action. There’s just something about that hypnotic swinging…
Chui’s ride is filled with carnival spirit and joy, as the patrons swing back and forth. The cleverly geared system is run off of a Power Functions XL Motor and Battery Pack. The whole creation is lighted, and also includes a concessions window that can be easily removed and customized.
I’m a major fan of both creations that move and animals, so when I saw this I knew I had to write about it! These beautiful little “long-necks” actually have the same lumbering movements as their real-life counterparts! They even swing their tails and bend their necks! These lovely mechanics are the work of Daniel Schlumpp. He put a ton of thought into the design of the mechanical components, and it definitely paid off!
Just like the scene from the Terminator movies, the missing link to the end of our world and beginnings of Skynet all began with a robotic arm, and we have Adam Wołkowycki to thank for. It all begins with innocent simple tasks like these. Grabbing an object, and performing routine tasks. All built with LEGO parts including pneumatic and electronic components. Containing 6 motors, 2 IR receivers, 7 pneumatic cylinders and 4 linear actuators.
Builder HallBricks blends the functional with the beautiful in this Technic Motorized Bus. I watched this video several times in awe of its clean lines, compact design, and marvelous engineering. This model exhibits many design features that blend SYSTEM brick and Technic parts to form elegant curves. The rear pillars and roof combine Technic panels with SYSTEM rounded slopes for a smooth, semi-oblate shape. On the outside, the model’s headlights and tail lights consist of multiple translucent tiles for a multi-faceted effect.