Saturday, October 31, 2009

Fire Brigade Modification

Name of Model: Fire Brigade Modification
Created by: a-corb (unconfirmed, this model was part of a group layout)
Found at: Flickr
It's amazing what a few simple modifications can do to the overall appearance of a building. Here we see two modified Fire Brigade sets.

This modification consists of two second floors of the proper set and a bottom floor that has had the window arrangement tossed up somewhat so that it gets away from the 'firehouse' look. What is achieved in the end is a very classical and elegant looking building, worthy of any city.

So, if you were wondering what to do with those extra copies of 10197 lying around (a problem we all wish we could have); wonder no more!

(As a sidenote, look what someone did with three copies of the Fire Brigade!)

Friday, October 30, 2009

Production Stops for Set 10179-1: Millennium Falcon

The production line has stopped for the largest Star Wars set to date, 10179-1: Millennium Falcon. So if you don't have one, and you were thinking of buying one 'in the near future'; the future has come.

Somewhat sad to see the Falcon go, but that's the cycle of things. Hopefully we'll get something equally nice in its place.

Snooker Table

Name of Model: Snooker table
Created by: lego_mancer
Found at:
Snooker is a game similar to pool. It requires a table like this one, which happens to be perfectly scaled for miniland-sized people. The details come out well here thanks to the wise decision to construct the walls and buffers sideways.

Besides the obvious "needs players!" critique, that's really all there is to say.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Barcelona's Casa Battló

Name of Model: Casa Battló
Created by: Henrik Hoexbroe
Found at:
While the colorful roof and details of the Casa Battló cry out to be recreated in LEGO form, the lack of straight lines on the original building makes things substantially more complicated. Surprisingly, though the curves of the gorgeous inspiration have been rendered adequately. The techniques here are fairly simple, but surprisingly effective.

Additional photos of the inspiration for this creation can be found at the official website (Flash required):

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Flying Saucer

Name of Model: UFO Invader
Created by: [Dablackcat]
Found at: and on BrickShelf:
This six-sided structure makes good use of some fairly difficult to use Bionicle elements. The six-sides appear to be provided by a Technic wheel - which conveniently gives another place to connect things through its axle. Constructing something this clever is a feat in itself, but actually getting a proper cockpit with a windshield and seat makes this instantly recognizable as a flying saucer.

Making this more unusual yet, this model was built for the Flattery Challenge, a contest that asks LEGO hobbyists to attempt a model more in the style of another builder. Part of the game is that when the models are first shared online, the builder of each model isn't revealed - so people have to guess who built what and whose style they are imitating. In this case, the builder was trying to imitate Arpy's creations.

LEGOWORLD 2009 Round-Up

As previously noted, LEGOWORLD was this past weekend in the Netherlands. Here is our belated attempt at the obligatory photo round-up (and as usual, we'll be adding more links to this page as we find out about them):

The photo used above was taken by Vincent Kessels and depicts an NXT-based recreation of the LEGO company's warehouse - this model is currently partially described at

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Early Days of Legoland

Sometimes you come across things that completely take you by surprise. That's how I felt when I saw this collection of photographs of Legoland [Lego in general, for that matter] when it was in its infancy. It's hard to believe how far the brick has come since the 60's.

Maybe you'll like these photos on Flickr as much as I did.

Modular Buildings

Name of Model: Modular Buildings
Created by: Daniel Z
Found at: Flickr
I took one look at these two lovely buildings and said "oh yeah".

Wonderful proportioning is used throughout the whole creation. Some very subtle details add alot to the overall appearance. I'm particularly fond of the 1x2 bley plates stuck between the studs to give a grill effect on the top of the tan/bley building.

Check out Daniel's photostream on Flickr for more of his wonderful creations.

Monday, October 26, 2009

South Korea Shows the LEGO Community What it can do

Large Korean layout

South Korea known throughout for its technological advancement and general "modernity". Through a westerner's eyes like mine, the country does not appear to have a large presence of AFOLs. Asian population centres like Hong Kong and Japan have achieved far more publicity in the west for their accomplishments. These include building the worlds tallest LEGO tower and building a minifig scale model of the Beijing Olympic Village.

Having said all of that, I was taken aback by the display I found photographs of while browsing through Brickshelf today. If it was anywhere in the world it would be impressive, and my bias makes this wonderful display even more impressive. Lego ambassador Sung-wan Kim (of BrickInside) was involved in this display's construction, no doubt making the overall product even more superlative.

Overall, just a wonderful piece of work, and a testament to creativity. I barely described the display at all, I'll let you 'describe' it for yourself. So check out the Brickshelf gallery and prepare to be awed!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Rolling Ball Stop Motion Video

Name of Model: LEGO Sphere/Ball Stop Motion レゴの球体を制作
Created by: talapz
Found at:

I've written about ball sculptures before, but the sad truth about round LEGO items is that they don't generally roll. This one, however, does. The video says it all, although you may have to squint a bit to make out how some of the plates with clips fit in.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Mario Sculpture

Name of Model: LEGO Mario : Building of colossal sculpture in less than 20 days
Created by: dm_meister
Found at:
This large sculpture of popular video game star Mario was commissioned by a large game store. It's actually got an interesting schedule ahead of it now. it's currently debuting at the LEGOWORLD LEGO fan convention in the Netherlands. It will be on display there through October 27th. After that, it will be on display at the Game Mania store through 1st November. Beyond that, it will be in the hands of whoever wins an auction for it on eBay (as of this writing, this model is not currently on eBay, but I am told it will be soon). The proceeds of that eBay auction will go to the regional branch of the Ronald McDonald house charities. This is a considerable amount of publicity for one model - maybe he landed on a mushroom first, because he sure seems like a Super Mario now!

Some quick stats on the model itself (copied from one of the photos' descriptions):
* pedestal 30c
* everything is glued
* roughly 1 week making plans
* pedestal : 25 hours of building ( 12,000 pcs) ; 30 x 103 x 52cm
* mario : 160 hours of building ( 30,000 pcs ) ; 150 x 85 x 75cm
* 50 kg
* built in 16 days

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Hobbit, Microscale Map

Name of Model: The Hobbit, Microscale Map
Created by: william costumers
Found at:
We've seen microscale before, we've seen landscaping before, and we've seen Lord of the Rings models before, but this is the first time we've seen all three in one model. The scale is slightly caricatured, giving it an old book illustration feel and allowing the builder to do some interesting things with greenery. Zooming in reveals the non-LEGO labels that make this function as a map.

Aquanaut Layout

Name of Model: Underwater Station
Created by: timura86
Found at:
There aren't enough good Aquazone layouts out there. Here's a small base for loading a decent-sized Aquanaut sub (and a few smaller subs). The ship has some non-LEGO supports to hold it up, but considering how hard it would be to truly recapture the feel of the Aquashark set 6190 Shark's Crystal Cave in an Aquanaut-themed model, I think it's fine. Besides, submarines don't generally land on the ocean floor, so a higher loading area that requires the submarine to hover above the ocean floor is more realistic. Any submarine that can carry this size of Aquanaut army is clearly doing things right.

For those of you with no idea what I'm talking about, Aquazone was a LEGO theme introduced in 1995 and phased out around 1999. It was loosely revived more recently as "Aqua Raiders", which is even more confusing since "Aquaraiders" was also the name of the drill-happy faction released in 1997. The original two factions were Aquanauts and Aquasharks. Sadly, the short life of the Aquazone series is now seen as the beginning of the "playthemes" phenomenon, where LEGO is increasingly releasing short-lived lines with original characters and simple plot lines (like good guys vs bad guys in fantasy wars - you'll notice very similar plots in Power Miners, Agents, the current Pirates line, Exo-Force, Mars Mission, Life On Mars, etc.). Now it's a bit easier to see the writing on the wall where discontinued themes go - pretty much anything that LEGO's "playthemes" department works on isn't bound to stick around.

...of course, that will never stop us from reviving our favorites for original creations - which is why models like this one are so exciting in the first place. These models revive something special that was clearly only meant for a few years that have since passed.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Kinkaku-ji / Temple of the Golden Pavilion

Name of Model: LEGO Pop-up Kinkaku-ji レゴで飛び出る金閣寺(鹿苑寺)
Created by: talapz
Found at:

This is the first great model of the Golden Pavilion that I've seen - and that fact is going to get lost in the shuffle due to just how unique this creation is. This thing is spectacular on several different levels. On the one hand, it's built to look like a LEGO set box - all the sides are assembled as mosaics, and the details (including letters in English and Japanese, as well as a "parts list" and "actual size" minifigs) are all spectacular, even though things are kept strictly at low resolutions to match the side they are on. On the other hand - it's a giant pop-up creation that folds out to construct the perfect minifig-scale model of the Golden Pavilion inside! The close-ups near the end of the clip provide some insight as to how this was done, but it still remains a mysterious marvel.

2091 AD

Name of Model: 2091 AD
Created by: NeXTSTORMING (see also: Vassilis Chryssanthakopoulos (NeXTSTORM))
Found at:
NeXTSTORM is back with more NXT-based animatronic videos. We've previously featured his Pirates and Paradisa themed videos, and this time he turns his attention to the Space theme. The big twist? Figuratively, the use of cameras on a platform controlled by NXT motors. Literally, the whole middle of this thing is spinning. Once again, you need to watch the whole video to get the full effect. The "Found At" link above also contains a summary with a decent listing of what was used to make the magic happen.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Great Wave of Kanagawa

Name of Model: Great Wave of Kanagawa
Created by: Arthur Gugick
Found at:
Arthur Gugick has posted another of his spectacular mosaics. We've seen mosaics that stretch the techniques of the style before, and this one is no different - we see round pieces that allow colors to show through from underneath, there's plenty of transparent and translucent colors used to blend colors and make things apper very fluid, and some clever layering to different heights helps to add to the sense of movement. While using all these tricks can be fairly parts-intensive, I'm continually surprised by how well new innovations in building "simple" mosaics prove themselves by bringing out more colors and details.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Ching Dynasty Garden

Name of Model: Ching Dynasty Garden
Created by: obscurance
Found at: Flickr
Obscurance brings us a lovely and quite tranquil garden scene, supposedly set during the Ching Dynasty. With no proper title, I am left to infer the context of this creation, so take what I've written above with a grain of salt.

Regardless of the title, this a a commendable creation. I find Asian themed creations to be among the most difficult to pull off well. And this creation was "pulled off" very, very well. With a wonderful mixture of detail and simplicity, this creation is perfectly balanced.

On the subject of Asian themed Lego, BrickTW's new ancient Chinese custom minifig accessories are out on the market (some of which are used in this very creation) now, I am looking forward to seeing what builders use these new custom accesories for.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Uh oh!

Name of Model: Uh oh!
Created by: Afro Engineer
Found at: Flickr
Uh oh! is right, it would seem that squidman is in fact just a regular [theif] guy, not the alien we all though he was...

A mixture of perfect figure placement and parts usage really makes this vignette stand out from all the rest.

Just a hilarious little comedic scene, very appropriate for a Friday, I'm thinking.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Renegade Redcoat Rum Runners!

Name of Model: Renegade Redcoat Rum Runners!
Created by: Derfel Cadarn
Found at: Flickr
Derfel Cadarn brings us a splendid pirates creation, complete with copious amounts of vegetation, lots of bley, and every other component that great creations are made of.

The dock and the rock surrounded beach is my favorite part of the creation. I'm really liking the studs up water used here too, it shows that you don't have to use SNOT to get decent looking water, (talented builders [cough, cough] take note) sometimes tiles work just as well.

An impressive creation all around, a good deal of time and effort was put into this creation. None of that [effort] went to waste either, the resulting creation is a masterful piece of work.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

New York Stock Exchange building

Name of Model: New York Stock Exchange building
Created by: Sean Kenney
Found at:

Sean Kenney was recently commissioned to build the historic facade of the New York Stock Exchange building. This model is 3 feet tall, a scale that allowed both minifigs and miniland figures to represent the sculptures above the columns. Speaking of those enormous columns - Sean posted building instructions so we can build our own giant columns!

The NYSE website has more information on the history of the building this model is based on.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Public library

Name of Model: Public library
Created by: Space2310
Found at:

Here's another minifig-scale town masterpiece. It's suburban, but still in the Cafe Corner standard. The column capitals are spectacular, and the textures for the trim and roof look even better. Then there's the inside - the library is actually fully furnished with bookshelves!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Great Western LEGO Show 2009

While Brickcon 2009 goes on in Seattle in the United States, England is having a large Lego event of its own. Held in Swindon, county Wiltshire, the "Great Western LEGO Show 2009" draws AFOLs from all over the UK.

(You may hear this event being referred to as STEAM 2009 across the web, this is because the event is being held at the "STEAM" museum.)

The quality of the MOCs being shown is impressive, as is the in event store selling a variety of Lego products.

Here's a collection of links to various photosets of event photographs:

(Credit for the photo that this post is using goes to Doctor Sinister.)

10210-1: Imperial Flagship

It would seem that we have a new Pirates set in our future!

I'm sure that by now our readers have already gotten wind of this new set. If you haven't, and you still aren't quite sure what I'm talking about, check out the posts that Brickset and The Brothers Brick have written.

To the readers of our last post: did my prediction not come
true? "...I'm wondering if we will see a set revealed to the world for the first time, as was done at the convention in 2008."

(Picture credits go to Mr. Becraft over at TBB)