Tag Archives: M:Tron

Don’t LOL at this VTOL

M:Tron was a classic space line of LEGO sets back in the day, best recognized by the red color scheme on its vehicles. Though the line ended decades ago, builder Blake Foster resurrects this spacecraft in true M:Tron fashion.

This Heavy VTOL, which stands for Vertical Take Off and Landing, is a masterpiece in imagination. Blake Foster ingeniously combined bricks that you usually don’t see together, using large rounded red bricks with harsh green fluorescent wings jutting out. His explanation for this creative decision was that the M:Tron Corporation secretly implemented stolen alien technology into their vehicle.

I can’t get enough of the tiny details, like the power plant work around the gun or the vents on engines. See the magnetic drop pods on the bottom of the VTOL? What a great idea! The vehicle can easily transfer cargo at a moment’s notice. Perhaps it would make a great addition to his M:Tron magnet factory.

M:Tron – delivering to a galaxy near you soon

The M:Tron range of LEGO Space sets released back in 1990 never made any bones about the utilitarian  nature of its magnet-laden fleet. It was all about finding innovative ways of lifting and moving its precious equipment cases around the galaxy.  Tim Goddard, whose space work has become a regular feature here on TBB, has really run with this idea of transportation.  He asks, how do you deploy your beautifully built M:Tron mech to the planet surface?  With the M:Tron Pod of course.

POD

Having had a close-up look at this build at Bricktastic earlier this year, I was mightily impressed by the lengths Tim had gone to, to make his Pod hexagonal.  Of course it also has a fully functional hatch mechanism. Like so much of his work, it’s a splendidly detailed homage to one the LEGO Group’s most-loved themes.

POD opening

The M:Tron base of our dreams: 4 years and 100,000 LEGO bricks

I remember getting a used M:Tron set as a kid and discovering how awesome magnetism is, and how I wanted to learn where magnets came from. Thanks to Blake Foster and his M:Tron Magnet Factory, I finally know the answer:

M:Tron Magnet Factory

Not only has Blake created an inspired M:Tron base and stunning landscaped base, but he’s added a monorail and some really impressive movement which you can see in the following video:

I was able to see this incredible creation this past weekend at BrickFair Virginia, where it took the Best Space trophy (check out the time-lapse setup video). I sat down with Blake to get the details on his layout:

TBB: With all the classic LEGO space themes or even other pop culture references why did you choose M:Tron as a theme for your build?

BF: It’s part nostalgia and part obscurity. I loved M:Tron as a kid, and yet it doesn’t get all that much attention from the AFOL community. Compared to Neo-Blacktron or Neo-Classic-Space, M:Tron is a rarity. That obscurity can be a good thing, though, because there are more opportunities to do something original. I really wanted to make something unique, so M:Tron seemed like a good theme to do it in.

TBB: With something of this size, 4 x 6 baseplates (192 x 128 studs), how long did it take you to build?

BF: I started toying with ideas for this project 4-5 years ago. I was in grad school at the time, though, and didn’t have the budget to complete it. I started working in earnest two years ago. By my best guess, it took about 3,000 hours of building, 462 Bricklink orders and I would estimate 100,00 bricks. Here is an early work in progress image of the build:

Early WIP shot

Read more about Blake’s M:Tron Magnet Factory →