Here’s a little diorama that captures what it must have felt like to be a sailor during the Age of Exploration. Ferdinand Magellan’s ship Victoria was the first vessel to circumnavigate the globe, and it was a mere 69 feet long. No doubt rounding the horn in a ship that small must have felt a bit like aboard the ship in TonyFlow76‘s little kinetic sculpture.
Using trans-blue garage doors pieces to simulate the undulating sea, a tiny ship is held in place while it rides up and down the massive swells.
While I’m boringly American in culture, I do have a significant amount of Scandinavian ancestry, as attested by my Swedish surname. Though I’m sure my ancestors were the same lowly farmers in Sweden that they were when they arrived in the United States several generations back, I like to imagine that somewhere among my forebears were some axe-swinging Vikings pillaging Irish fields so green with Led Zeppelin playing in the background, rowing longships like this LEGO one designed by Jonas Kramm across the North Sea. On they sweep with the threshing oar, seeking that rich western shore, crewed by a small army of CMF Series 20 Viking warriors. The serpent prow of the ship is lovely, as is the simplicity of the whole construction. Valhalla, I am coming!
Love Viking builds? Then check out the TBB archives here. And see more of Jonas’ builds here, too.
The long-awaited sales of the Nebulon-B Frigate which was revealed in October is now available on Amazon (US) only. It comes with 459 pieces and retails at USD 39.99. Grab it soon as this cancelled SDCC exclusive will likely fly off the shelves fast.
A moment of American history is frozen in time in James Pegrum‘s LEGO recreation of the Mayflower, the English ship that transported the first Pilgrims to New England. The story goes that indentured servant John Howland was swept overboard during a storm and held on until the crew hauled him back to safety. That splash is represented at the center of the build, carefully crafted out of rows of dark blue bricks and white curved slopes among the turbulent waves. The Mayflower flaunts some brick-built masts and beautiful blue accents on her sides. Plus, the rigging is all string and no prefabs — a solid choice for this level of realism.
It’s not my fault, really. Our new Brothers Brick contributor, Mansur got us thinking about it and now I can’t see all this LEGO SHIPtember business without hearing Pink Floyd tunes. I can’t even fathom anymore how space travel is even possible without Pulse on continuous loop. While I already have the soundtrack in mind, Marko Petrušić gives us a glimpse of what real interstellar travel could look like. Of all the massive SHIPs we’ve seen lately this one stands apart. The inclusion of solar sails certainly help give this craft a different profile.
Marko calls this creation Daedalus whom, if you recall your Greek mythology, lost a son to wind-surfing or something. If you like nerd data, Marko tells us this measures 177x177x136 studs with the solar sails and 28x28x54 studs without. While this is indeed a computer render, he also tells us this took only a day to create…or about the length of a live version of your average Pink Floyd song. Here’s a closer view of the craft without regard to the solar sails. Check out that amazing detail!
As much enjoyment as I get out of microscale builds, I find that it’s the really large LEGO creations that get my blood pumping. That’s why I look forward to SHIPtember – that magical time of year when talented builders like Marin Stipkovic deplete their personal brick stock to create SHIPs aplenty. Reaching the goal of 100+ studs in length is no easy task, but Marin accomplishes it in style with the Phunky. I love the unusual color scheme of the mirrored transparent purple windscreens in the command deck, That, combined with the overall shape, reminds me of a giant purple highlighter. If, you know, stationary was more like space-tionary. No, I will not be explaining that terrible logic jump any more than that. Instead, let’s take a moment and admire the other clever part usage like the new goggle rings from the 75551 Brick-built Minions set along the underside.
From the side you can get a better view of the Phunky’s rail gun and beam cannons, as well as the sweet color gradient along the hull. (For those of you wondering, the Phunky was already at 107 studs long before the guns and thruster burst were added.)
Don’t think Marin is limited to just building giant markers…I mean spaceships. Check out their other featured builds!
For the past several years, my friend Steve Witt has been collecting the necessary LEGO bricks and fiddling with his design to produce a 7-foot-long (2.1 meter) recreation of a Paris-class UNSC heavy frigate from the Halo video game universe that he’s dubbed the Katara. After following his work-in-progress photos on Facebook and Flickr for five years, I’m very pleased to share this closer look at the finished ship, exclusive to The Brothers Brick.
We’ll take a closer look at the details and share some of the build’s history in a moment, but let’s pause and take in just how massive a LEGO ship 7 feet long really is, with this photo of the builder working on it.
See detailed photos and learn more about this massive Halo ship
With many ship festivals and sailing events cancelled this year due to the ongoing pandemic, it is nice to be able to get my ship fix in via LEGO. Builder Lennart Cort certainly materializes the fine craftsmanship of a well-built sea vessel into the LEGO medium for viewers to enjoy in his build of the Dannebrog from 1852.
The Dannebrog is a “ship of the line,” which is a type of naval warship that was produced in the 17th century to the mid 19th century. Cort’s micro-scale Dannebrog certainly exhibits the details necessary for a military ship. One example is his utilization of multiple round 1×1 with bar and pin holder pieces as gun ports. The Dannebrog was specifically an armored frigate of the Royal Danish navy – in fact, the word Dannebrog is the given name of the Danish flag, and through this build we can see this connection via Cort’s use of two red streamer flags modified with what looks like white tape to form the white cross on the Danish flag. My favorite part of this build is actually the brick-built sails that Cort expertly executes using white wedge plates and tiles; he really does an excellent job at making brick-built sails look like the real deal. In my opinion, Cort’s brick-built sails are visually more appealing than the ones featured in the new Creator 3-in-1 pirate ship designed by LEGO. As a whole, Cort’s creation certainly is beauty and must look wonderful on display.
A friend in need is a friend indeed, they say. Who is they? Probably Louis of Nutwood, for one, since he built this microscale LEGO scene of a relief ship unloading its supplies to help save a city near destruction. The ship itself is small and sleek, elegantly color blocked, and the harbor is great, too, with its large cranes to unload the supplies. The water deserves some extra attention, with the subtle variation in colors and the studs being used for waves near the shore. But more than that, the whole piece has an elegant composition, with the rocks, uneven edge of the water, and the clear central focus on the ship. What kind of ship? Friendship.
Where I sit, the government has issued a stay at home order, and non-essential in-person businesses are closed. Grocery stores are an exception, of course, as we all still need to eat, and so are liquor stores, as folks still need to drink. I mean really, what else do you do when socially isolated? It puts me in mind of Captain Jack Sparrow, getting through his time marooned on an island alone. He, too, drank away his sorrows. So when I (Benjamin Stenlund) decided to enter the Style it Up contest to pass the time during my days at home, it wasn’t long before I hit on the idea of building a ship. And since I have a lot of black fabric elements, I decided to build a black ship. And if I was going to make a black ship, why not make Captain Jack’s ship, the Black Pearl?
At first, I tried building the sides with slope bricks and tiles, but it looked too chunky at this small scale, so I hit upon the idea of using the quarter dome elements for the prow, and the rest of the ship filled in from there. The 1×1 round plate with bar makes for some nice cannons, even if I did not add enough to equal the real ship; there are concessions one must make at this scale, after all. The sails are cloaks wrapped in rubber bands, and the crows nests are Black Panther ears and ninja cowls. The soft sails, combined with the rigging, make this unique among small-scale LEGO ships that I have seen, but what really sets it apart (if I may toot my own horn a bit) is the atmospheric quality of the photo. Since the contest required that only one color be used, the water is black, too, and the backdrop is also black; in fact, the photo is unedited except for cropping, so this is full-color. Perfect for the ship of a drunken pirate.
This gorgeous LEGO diorama by Stephan Gofers shows us the ocean’s full depth, from the vivid coral reefs below the waves, to the sleek 3-master sailing on its surface. The pirate crew has captured a hapless guard, forcing him to walk the plank. In no short order, he’ll be admiring the fantastic marine life from a much closer vantage point, and since he’s not wearing handcuffs, we can assume he’ll swim safely to shore to become a new castaway.
While the colorful reef draws the eye first, the ship itself is a lovely model, eschewing LEGO’s pre-made ship hull elements and instead opting for a planked-look made of brown tiles and curved slopes. The furled sails made of curved white slopes also look excellent. Continue reading
Many LEGO fans talk about hunting for their white whale – that one set they’ve been searching for all their lives. This is, of course, an allusion to Captain Ahab’s ultimately fatal obsession with finding an actual white whale in Moby Dick (do 168 year old books need spoiler warnings?). It would seem that that fairy tale whale is still out there hunting ships, as Oliver Becker demonstrates.
Has the white whale grown to such an immense size to dwarf the ship? Or is she a regular-sized whale and it’s the ship that’s actually tiny? We’ll never know for sure, but we do know that there’s some excellent parts usage at play here. Dead center in the frame of the shot is a white lever base, expertly used as the whale’s eye. I really love the swords with jagged edges used to create a splash – those few parts convey the creature’s movement. And it’s a big splash, so maybe it really is a larger-than-life whale.