There’s one thing I never get tired of in the world of Star Wars, and that’s seeing yet another custom LEGO X-Wing model. Each builder brings their own flavor to the table, including neat techniques. What seems easy usually isn’t. For example, builder Koen Zwanenburg experimented with four different iterations and modifications before ending up with the X-Wing seen here. For those unfamiliar with Koen’s work, he’s quite a versatile builder with everything from the cuteness overload of his classic rubber duck to the elegant grandeur of his Minas Tirith from the Lord of the Rings!
A number of things have changed in the way LEGO has begun marketing its sets in 2019, and one of them is the Juniors line of branding. The “Juniors” branding has been replaced by boxes with a huge “4+” number at the bottom left corner. This year, for the very first time, the LEGO Star Wars theme enters the newly branded 4+ (formerly “Juniors”) age group and one of our favorite vehicles makes its debut, the X-Wing Starfighter. We don’t typically review sets meant exclusively for younger kids, but with Star Wars, how could we say no? 75235 X-Wing Starfighter Trench Run is available now, retailing at $29.99 in the US (CDN 39.99 and GBP 24.99), and we wanted to let you decide for yourselves as we dive into the details.
There are few Star Wars vehicles as recognizable as the X-wing — from the distinctive shape of the wings that give it its name, to the long tapered fuselage. This iconic starfighter has inspired many LEGO builders to attempt to capture it in brick, as well as official LEGO sets like 75218 X-wing Starfighter released last year. This model by JJbricks is a fantastic build at minifig scale and has some great details, such as the canopy, resting on an angled frame. The visible grey bits on the inside of the wing are also a nice touch. But some of my favorite parts are the laser cannons. Made with just a few pieces, they very accurately capture their on-screen inspiration.
And this rear view shows off a nice bit of greebling within the hexagonal body of the ship.
We’ve been featuring the excellent LEGO models of Polish builder Jarek for more than ten years. While Jarek builds across many LEGO themes, he is perhaps best known for his highly detailed LEGO Star Wars vehicles, from the sleek A-wing back in 2008 and a 2-meter-long Imperial Star Destroyer to Darth Vader’s TIE Advanced just a few months ago. And yet, Jarek has never before built the iconic X-wing starfighter — until now.
The Incom T-65 X-wing is a particularly challenging craft to render in LEGO due to its harsh angles and distinctive details. As one of the most recognizable vehicles in the Star Wars universe, as well as a frequent subject of official LEGO sets, like the recent 75218 X-wing Starfighter. As a result, even casual fans tend to catch even the smallest inconsistencies and inaccuracies.
Despite — or perhaps because of — the release of two different T-70 X-wings produced in support of The Force Awakens in late 2015 and mid-2016, it’s been over six years since LEGO has released a version of the iconic T-65 starfighter featured in the Classic Trilogy. With the release of 75218 X-wing Starfighter on August 1st, the most recognizable Rebel fighter in the Star Wars universe becomes available to a new generation of LEGO builders. The latest X-wing includes 731 pieces and four minifigs and will retail for $79.99 in the US (CDN 99.99 | GBP 89.99).
How does this latest LEGO X-wing stack up against the previous X-wings released over the years?
Designing a starfighter is fairly easy. Designing an outstanding starfighter is, well… a bit harder. Finally we may have a universal recipe for that, courtesy of Cole Blaq. Take out your notepads and write down the ingredients:
– One half of a B-Wing base (choose a firm one, not wilted)
– Two X-wing engine modules (not too big)
– One slung-under TIE fighter cockpit (the juicier the better)
– If desired, one small Star Destroyer laser battery
– A pinch of creativity
Combine well, and freeze on Hoth for 60 minutes. Then serve cold. Sprinkle servings with a pinch of astro-droids.
The ever-popular LEGO Star Wars line continues to pump out models of everyone’s favorite Star Wars spaceships, and after 17 years most ships have seen multiple iterations. The iconic X-Wing has seen over a half-dozen iterations, including the two versions from Episode VII. And fans have always sought to one-up the official models — sometimes to spectacular success, such as Mike Psiaki’s beautiful version in 2011. However, there’s always room for new builders to try their hand at this venerable starfighter. Enter Maciej Szymański with this stunningly accurate model that even includes working lights. I think my favorite details on this model are the hockey masks used as a the flashback suppressors on the wing-mounted lasers, and the carefully curled hose for the pilot’s life support.
It’s hard to believe how quickly Star Wars: The Force Awakens has taken the world by storm and become ingrained in the public consciousness. Popsicle speeders, orange and black X-Wings, that one desert beast-thing… All of these new (yet old-looking) vehicles are now instantly recognizable and excitement-inducing. Relatively new to the online LEGO community, builder Robert Lundmark has already made his mark with recreations of classic Star Wars ships — but he has now dived into the new series with multiple Force Awakens builds: Rey’s speeder, Poe Dameron’s X-Wing, and Teedo’s Luggabeast.
I’ve seen a lot of mash-ups, but this is the first time I’ve seen a Gundam crossed with a Star Wars ship. This hybrid by Kevin Ryhal (MDSWIM) looks useful to the rebel resistance, but I’m not sure how it can bring down the Death Star.
We hope you enjoy our exclusive coverage of the life-size LEGO Star Wars X-wing unveiled in New York earlier today, but we’d be remiss in our duties if we didn’t pass along the official info from LEGO as well.
See the full photoset on Flickr for all the official photo’s, along with Joe Meno’s from the warehouse.
Here’s the press release:
THE LEGO GROUP UNVEILS WORLD’S LARGEST LEGO® MODEL TO DELIGHT LEGO STAR WARS™ FANS ACROSS THE GALAXY
-More than five million LEGO bricks used to create life-sized X-Wing starfighter in celebration of new LEGO Star Wars animated TV special “The Yoda™ Chronicles” premiering on Cartoon Network-
NEW YORK CITY (May 23, 2013) – The LEGO Group today unveiled the world’s largest LEGO model, a 1:1 replica of the LEGO® Star Wars™ X-Wing starfighter, in New York’s Times Square. To celebrate the upcoming premiere of The Yoda Chronicles on Cartoon Network on Wednesday, May 29 at 8:00 p.m. (ET, PT), the massive replica took 32 master builders, five million LEGO bricks and over 17,000 hours to complete. The model weighs nearly 46,000 pounds, stands 11 feet tall and 43 feet long, with a wingspan of 44 feet. The Model will “take off” for a summer landing at LEGOLAND® California Resort where it will be installed through the remainder of the year.
“Just as kids love to test and hone their LEGO building skills and imaginative storytelling, our LEGO Master Builders are always testing their creative skills to top their last larger-than-life sized creations,” said Michael McNally, Brand Relations Director for LEGO Systems. “The size and structural complexity of a freestanding model 42 times the size of one our retail sets was a challenge they could not resist.”
LEGO Star Wars is the original and most successful licensed product collection in The LEGO Group’s history and remains among the best-selling global toy lines. The theme’s evergreen strength comes from its appeal across generations to fans of all ages and a steady introduction of digital content such as The Yoda Chronicles to compliment the building experience.
“Much the same way that fans can build the Star Wars universe with our LEGO sets, we are fortunate to work with Lucasfilm to build new stories, characters and vehicles through one-of-a-kind content such as the new “Yoda Chronicles” miniseries launching on Cartoon Network,” said Nicholas Hort, LEGO Star Wars brand manager.
LEGO Star Wars X-Wing Starfighter Model Fun Facts
- Contains 5,335,200 LEGO bricks
- Weighs 45,980 pounds
- Height: 11 feet / 3.35 meters
- Length: 43 feet / 13.1 meters
- Wingspan: 44 feet / 13.44 meters
- 32 builders spent 17,336 hours to construct – about 4 months
- Built in the LEGO Model Shop in Kladno, Czech Republic
- Is a one-to-one replica of LEGO Star Wars set #9493; The model is 42x the size of the retail building set
- The model was heavily engineered to withstand all the transportation, setup/break down and to ensure it was safe for Times Square given the subway system below and California’s seismic requirements for the LEGOLAND California Resort installation.
How to Celebrate From a “Galaxy Far, Far Away” with Cool Content and LEGO Bricks
“The Yoda Chronicles”
The Yoda Chronicles is an exciting, funny and action-packed new LEGO Star Wars story told in three animated TV specials. “The Phantom Clone” will premiere on Wednesday, May 29 at 8:00 p.m. (ET, PT) on Cartoon Network with specials two and three airing later this year. In the first of three specials, a brand new character, Jek 14 will enter the Star Wars universe. Created by the LEGO Group, Jek 14 is a clone who has been ‘enhanced’ by the Force.
LEGO Star Wars Red Five X-Wing Starfighter™
The most detailed and realistic version of the construction set, the LEGO Star Wars Red Five X-Wing Starfighter, is now available as the ultimate collectible. This exclusive model that contains over 1,500 LEGO bricks comes with a special display stand and data sheet label, is available at LEGO® brand retail stores and shop.LEGO.com for $199.99 USD.
For more information, visit LEGO.com/StarWars
Today in New York, LEGO unveiled a massive model of an X-wing fighter from Star Wars. Built by LEGO Master Model Builders, it’s the largest LEGO model ever made. While TBB couldn’t make it to New York for the launch ourselves, we’re pleased to bring you a guest post by BrickJournal Editor-in-Chief Joe Meno.
The e-mail I received got my attention. It simply asked me if I was interested in having a personal tour of the “largest LEGO model ever built.” The note from LEGO had something to do with The Yoda Chronicles, an upcoming TV show on Cartoon Network. The clues given were that I would have to go to New York City and be taken to a hangar somewhere to see this model.
For me, a trip to New York City is a cheap flight and hotel stay, so I accepted the invite and a few weeks and one particularly long windy drive, I along with a few others arrived at MacArthur Airport on Long Island, to a hangar that looked like any other hangar, except for the LEGO logo on the door. We were met by LEGO staff, including Master Model Builders Erik Varszegi and Dale E. Chasse, who led us inside. The first things we saw were the bulletins on the wall and the computer, which displayed an X-Wing. Then we turned and saw the rear of a private plane… Or was that a LEGO X-Wing fighter?
Walking around to the front of the fighter, Erik gave us some information about the model. In case you missed it elsewhere, here’s the short of it:
- Built from over 5 million bricks
- Depicts the iconic X-wing starfighter from Star Wars
- Built in the Czech Republic at LEGO’s Kladno Model Shop
- Shipped in 32 pieces to be reassembled at MacArthur Airport
From there, the plan was to separate the X-Wing into three parts to transport to Times Square: left wing, right wing, and fuselage. Some parts, such as the cockpit and outrigger guns were also removed for transport.
In the hangar, though, it was complete, as if ready for a mission.
Erik then showed us a neat surprise. With the flick of a few hidden switches, the X-Wing came to life with its engines glowing and powering up. The model has an internal lighting system and speakers, including woofers to give a deep sound to the engines. The rumble was one you felt as well as heard.
Nearby, sized-up minifigures of Luke Skywalker, R2-D2, and R5-D8 were also on display, along with Yoda wearing his “I Love New York” T-shirt, which was first seen on minifigures given out at New York Toy Fair earlier this year. While Jek Porkins was a minifigure in this set, he wasn’t present at the hangar, as he wasn’t finished. (He did make it to Times Square, though!) Beside the computer was a reference model and also a sample stud from the final model.
A quick explanation of scale: Because of the proportions of the minifigure, scale is often a fuzzy standard. For this model, the scale was determined to be 1:42, which is a pretty good approximation for kids. This will be important in a bit, so keep this thought. To understand the scale, take a 1-stud brick. The stud alone sized up to be 42 studs by 42 studs, making it almost the size of a large baseplate. This also makes the stud a little larger than the actual set. This makes details pretty easy to build, so every stud does have a LEGO logo on them.
The model also is almost completely composed of bricks, with only a few plates used for shaping.
Scaling to kids is important because the cockpit is meant to be boarded. The canopy doesn’t open, so a side panel is removed for entry. The interior of the cockpit is a photo station for kids to post photos online, so there are no details like the set, but a screen with a mosaic frame. The space is a little cramped for an adult, as I bumped my head on the cockpit glass.
After the cockpit visit, Dale asked me if I wanted any overhead pics, pointing to an improvised cherry picker in front of the fighter. I didn’t hesitate, and I was quickly held over the X-Wing. It was there that I found that my camera lens wasn’t wide enough to get the entire model in one shot. In fact, that was a running problem that Erik picked up on when he said, “Maybe we should have told you to bring a wide-angle lens.” Overhead, though, you get a real impression of the size of the X-Wing. The others with me took pics, and then Dale moved the cherry picker for some more shots.
After the overhead session, I got to see some of the computer work that was done. The model was digitally built around a metal armature, and yes all 5 million plus parts are on the file! That made the computer crash a couple of times, but I was able to see how each section was set up to fit with the others. The files are not that different from LEGO Digital Designer or LCad files, but they are much bigger.
Here are a couple photos showing the internal steel armature:
Our hour-long insider tour ended with a promise of secrecy until the official unveiling in Times Square. Many thanks to Erik, Dale, and the rest of the LEGO gang for showing off this awesome model!
And many thanks to Joe for this quick write-up while on the road from New York! Look for a longer article in an upcoming issue of BrickJournal.
It’s that time of year again. In celebration of LEGO Star Wars, the LEGO Shop online is putting most Star Wars sets on sale for 10-20% off. In addition, they’re running a few other promotions for the weekend:
- Free shipping on orders over $50 / £25.
- Free Hoth Han Solo minifig on Star Wars orders over $75 / £50.
- Free Star Wars Yoda poster with all orders.
These deals and promotions are available Friday May 3rd and Saturday May 4th for the UK, and Saturday May 4th and Sunday May 5th for the US and Canada.
The biggest deal, though, is that 10227 B-Wing Starfighter is 50% off, or $100 instead of $200.
The new UCS set 10240 Red Five X-wing Starfighter is also out now: