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.
My original title for this article was something along the lines of a Zoolander quote, but then, that just made me feel old. But enough about me. We’re here to talk about a few amazingly detailed pirate ships at a scale suitable for Ant-man, the Wasp, or any other shrinking superhero, built by Robert4168/Garmadon and adorned with tiny sails made from paper, I think, and dozens of hand-tied rigging, which makes me tired just thinking about… or maybe that’s just me being old again. These ships may be small, but they still strike a mighty fierce cut.
This black-sailed ship is even firing cannons, using the ice-cream cone for the cannon smoke.
According to the Triassic Era LEGO gods who made this stuff up eons ago, a SHIP (Significantly Huge Investment in Parts) must measure at least 100 studs in any one direction. This craft by Filler Brick, aptly named The Disqualifier, measures in at precisely 99.9 studs. Close! So damned close! It would have been easy to take this creation to within specs but I get the hunch this builder liked being the underdog here. As someone who has often fallen short by a smidgen in so many different ways myself, I can relate. (Shut up, you!) Perhaps we could overlook its shortcomings with excellent presentation and the fact that this took thirty-one grueling days to build and somewhere between 3000-5000 pieces. It’s not about the size of the dog in the fight but rather the size of the fight in the dog. Or something. I’m feeling the love here, how about you?
For it is written, twas the Triassic Era LEGO Gods of Legend who sayeth unto he “go forth and buildeth a SHIP, a Significantly Huge Investment in Parts. It shall be no less than one hundred studs on one side. Thou shalt hence forth do it every September and thou shalt call it SHIPtember for that will be totally bitchin’.”
Like Noah, so many faithful disciples and space nerds had heeded the words of the legendary LEGO gods every September and has been building SHIPs for as long as we can remember. One such faithful disciple and space nerd is Shannon Sproule and this uncanny “Shipbreaker CALYPSO”.
Click here to learn more about this alien ship.
Large spaceships get the geeky type quite excited, and we LEGO builders are some of the geekiest. Over the decades, this has lead to a standardized criteria of what qualifies as a large space ship – 100 studs in length. While I do love every large spaceship out there (as the especially geeky type of person I am), I wonder if this criteria has started to impede creativity. With an annual celebration of large LEGO spaceships (also known as SHIPs) every September, the bricks of the world have been concentrated to bring us many elongated spacecraft that quite often measure exactly or just over 100 LEGO studs long. What about bulkier 90 or 80-stud spaceships that so rarely get made? On the other side of the coin, this cultural phenomenon has been a great source of inspiration to builders who may not have otherwise built a big hunk of space metal, not even a medium sized one! Another point is that this common perception of what qualifies as “large” is a uniting factor in the community.
The third side of this (apparently three-sided) coin are builds that are basically the definition of an elongated spaceship, but still manage to impress immensely! Anthony Wilson brings us a creation that has some amazing textures, negative space and colour blocking. What I love most about Anthony’s Pelicon-3 is the bridge area, with windows on either side, revealing a busy interior filled with trophy minifigures.
When I was a kid, pirate ships (as I called all boats with sails) were one of my favourite things to build with LEGO bricks. While I thought mine were OK, I wish I’d been able to jump forward in time and see some of Gerard Joosten’s ships, especially his HMS White Card.
While childhood me and adult Gerard’s ships are similar in that they start at the bottom with boat hull pieces, that’s where the similarities end. Though we’ve featured his builds before, Gerard pushed himself to take his shipbuilding to another level with this one and it shows. The two aspects that jump out the most to me are the shaping of the hull and the intricate rigging. Those large sails, coupled with small details like the brick built wooden stock on the anchor cement the HMS White Card as quite the stunning ship.
I have an icebreaker for you. No, I don’t mean one of those icebreaker questions like “what is in the trunk of your car right now?” (Eldritch Horror game, reusable shopping bags) or “what childish thing do you still do as an adult?” (Well, duh!). I’m talking about a roughly 2,000 piece LEGO Antarctic icebreaker built by Luis Peña. This is the new icebreaker of the Chilean Navy, currently under construction in Asmar, Talcahuano, and should be set to sail by 2022. Equipped with two SH32 Cougar helicopters, it will be the most modern icebreaker in South America, and the largest and most complex ship ever built in Asmar. The ship itself still has no name, but the project is called Antarctica 1. Perhaps they will let the internet decide a catchy name for this vessel. I mean, what can go wrong?
Oh, I thought of an icebreaker question that I can’t see backfiring in any way: Which Brothers Brick contributor annoys you the most? What can go wrong, indeed?
A builder named 呱氏神 (Gū Shìshén) has constructed, in my opinion, one of the most nauseating, vomit-inducing LEGO creations ever, but not because I dislike it. Quite the contrary. The skill level and presentation are all top-notch as evidenced by the beautiful waves, palm tree and gold filigree. My younger self would have loved the chance to go on this “Viking Pirates” ride, but as I get older it seems I’d rather quietly read about vikings or pirates and leave the real adventures to you crazy kids.
Queasy old stomach aside, this indeed looks as if it would be fun to play with. There is no video presentation for this, but the backside makes it clear that the ride works in exactly the way you’d think with the help of a manual crank and Technic gears. Continue reading
Imagine being a pirate and looking along the horizon to see the flagship of the royal navy barreling your way. Say, Stephen Chao‘s Royal Guardian, for example. With more than enough canons to knock the wind out of anyone’s sails, it’s a sight to behold. To be honest, I like history but I’m not a huge history buff; yet I can’t imagine there was ever a pirate ship as formidable (except in movies). I suppose its only downfall would be the speed it would lose with the weight of those canons.
Logistics aside, this build is well detailed and impressive in more ways than one! It’s very busy but clean at the same time. And not only does it look realistic and have superb shaping, it’s also fully furnished. Because, go big or go home, right? The mammoth ship comes complete with captain’s quarters, a galley, a full arsenal, and more.
Like the kind of ships that sail upon the oceans blue? Check out this unique swashbuckler, or maybe another with a gorgeously sculpted stern.
A builder going by the name of Gonkius has built a SHIP called WA:59, or The Wasp. According to the Triassic era LEGO builder gods who made this stuff up, SHIP stands for a Seriously Huge Investment in Parts that must exceed 100 studs in at least one plane. Not only does this creation satisfy that definition, but the builder went the extra mile with some neat LED light up features both fore and aft. Aside from its striking yellow and black striped color scheme this sleek craft bears little resemblance to an actual wasp from the side.
However, when viewed from the front at a three-quarter angle, the resemblance to a wasp becomes more apparent with a feature replicating the compound eyes of an insect. The glowing alien heads beneath the canopy are an excellent touch. Strangely, this SHIP looks as if it would feel equally at home in space or under the sea…or perhaps ruining your next picnic.
Are you aware that a hedge fund has nothing to do with shrubbery? Do you use the word “summer” as a verb? Have you ever summered in the French Riviera? Do you lack the ability and the know-how to change the channel on your theater sized TV because you have people do that for you? Does your walk-in closet have a heated swimming pool? Then you, my new friend, are a billionaire and you might be quite familiar with the super yacht. You know, for when a regular yacht just won’t do! I don’t know if Arjan Oude Kotte has a super yacht in real life, but it is a sure bet that he, if nothing else, has a massive LEGO collection. This model of an M/Y Scout Super Yacht is more than 48 inches long (123cm) and is built from roughly 14,000 pieces.
Here is a video of the undertaking. My favorite detail is this handsome minifigure enjoying a beverage on the aft deck proving, once and for all, that rich people do it better. All kidding aside, I strongly encourage you to check out the rest of Arjan’s work, as he is no stranger to building intricately detailed models of ships and boats. Now where did I leave my Henri IV Dudognon Heritage Cognac Grande Champagne?
It can be surprising how far a little camera angle and a good idea can go. Sometimes creations that are amazing from a technical standpoint can turn out overwhelming or chaotic, when simplicity is all you need. This creation by Martin Harris is one of the examples where less is more.
The build is indeed simple, but it has everything it needs. The water is essentially just thoughtfully placed curved slopes, and the ship looks like a ship with a nicely sculpted dragonhead and a viking-style sail. All this is photographed cleanly and at an immersive angle. The selling point is the ridiculous idea though. The fierce warriors on the ship are different LEGO baby minifigs, including sewer babies from the LEGO Movie 2, all wearing LEGO Heroica helmets.