Month: December 2011

Setting up my LEGO studio

Published / by Bill / 4 Comments on Setting up my LEGO studio

I’m writing this from my new LEGO studio, which is a work in progress that I’m in the process of setting up.

A little backstory: Just under two years ago, my wife Holly and I decided to break up. At first, she stayed in our bedroom, and I moved into the second bedroom. At that time, the second bedroom was a combination office and LEGO room, but to a large extent was really just a storage room. You know how a lot of the time one room in the house becomes the catch-all dumping ground when you need to clean up the rest of the house? That room served that purpose. Anyway, I cleared the junk out of that room, went to IKEA and bought a bed and some other furnishings, and moved into it. In the meantime Holly redecorated what had been our bedroom – I put our queen size bed into storage, and she got a new folding couch/bed and set that room up as her own space. We lived like that for a few months, and then in the spring she had to suddenly move across the country to Pennsylvania to help her mother, who had fallen ill. Although her mother recovered pretty quickly, she stayed there, and rented her own apartment in a nearby town. In the meantime, her room (our old room) was left pretty much as she left it. She flew out to visit once, and stayed in her room, and for a while she was paying me a part of the rent to keep her room available for her.

Eventually it became clear that I should take over the room, but I took a long time to get around to doing it. After living together for 18 years, it was hard for me to make those final steps of moving her out of the house. Finally though, this month, I finished packing up her stuff and putting it into a rented storage unit for her, and in the past few days I’ve been moving my stuff into the room. My LEGO collection had outgrown the two IKEA PAX armoires I was keeping it in, and now having the entire bedroom will allow me to organize things so that everything is easily accessible to me. Moving the LEGO out of my bedroom allowed me to reorganize the room to have a lot more elbow room, and the new LEGO studio is shaping up nicely.

The Advent calendar project, recently finished, was done in the living room until the 22nd day. The last two days were photographed in the studio, and I’ve just finished building my birthday present from Holly – the Battle of Alamut (Set 7573 from the Prince of Persia line). Hopefully with the new studio I will be more active building LEGO. But I have a lot of sorting and organizing to do first…

Advent 2011 Recap

Published / by Bill

Thanks for following along for the past 24 days as I’ve opened and built the models for the 2011 City and Star Wars Advent calendars. Now that I’ve opened all 24 days, let’s review what we have got. Click each little image to see a full size picture.

First, let’s review all the calendar items, grouped by days:

Days 1-4

Days 5-8

Days 9-12

Days 13-16

Days 17-20

Days 21-24

Both calendars included a wide variety of minifigs and models. Here you see the models organized by type. There were also a lot of extra parts – LEGO always includes an extra one of each of the smaller parts included in any set, and each of these daily mini-sets always came with extra parts just like any other LEGO set. The combined pile of City and Star Wars extra parts is pretty impressive.



City Police Station
Extra Parts

Advent 2011 Day 24

Published / by Bill

Day 24 of the LEGO City and Star Wars Advent Calendars for 2011. Merry Christmas Eve!

Today is the final day of the Advent calendars. Both calendars give us Santa Claus.

In City we have a traditional Santa Claus, the same way that LEGO has been producing him for years in Advent calendars. He has a sack on his back with presents (two 1×2 tiles) and the same hat and beard that they usually use. The torso is not printed, which I found a little disappointing. But we also get a cute little fireplace along with Santa complete with hot coals. Some might say that was cheap compared to the flames that LEGO usually put into fireplaces, but to be honest coals are probably more accurate anyway.

Star Wars brings us a cute Yoda Claus figure. Or is it Santa Yoda? Anyway, his head is very detailed, but rubbery – not the Yoda I have from older Star Wars sets. The cute printed torso is awesome, and they should have used the same torso in the City calendar if you ask me, just without the green hands.

Advent 2011 Day 23

Published / by Bill

Day 23 of the LEGO City and Star Wars Advent Calendars for 2011. Merry Christmas Eve Eve!

In the City calendar we get a dog and two bones. Three elements and one of them is extra. LAME. I like that it’s the new style of dog, but still pretty lame in terms of parts count.

On the Star Wars side, we get a cute little Christmas tree made out of green plates. If you look carefully, you may notice the jumper plates are the new style, with the fingernail grooves. I guess they’re jumper tiles now.

Tomorrow’s the last day of the advent calendar, Christmas Eve. I’ll be recapping the whole series, so check in to see what we ended up with!

Advent 2011 Day 22

Published / by Bill / 1 Comment on Advent 2011 Day 22

Day 22 of the LEGO City and Star Wars Advent Calendars for 2011. Happy Solstice!

City brings us another snowmobile, this one themed in blue and white … a police model, perhaps.

In Star Wars we get another cute little mini ship, the A-Wing (seen in Return of the Jedi) but I don’t think this one is nearly as good as the ones we’ve seen before. It’s just a few parts and I don’t really think it’s as well done as some of the others. Compare it to the Snowspeeder for example.

Here we see the whole family of snowmobiles and trailer:

Advent 2011 Day 21

Published / by Bill

Day 21 of the LEGO City and Star Wars Advent Calendars for 2011.

In City, we have a trailer for yesterday’s snowmobile.

Star Wars brings us another nifty micro model… this one is the UCS Millennium Falcon scaled down to the size it would be if a minifig built it. (Well actually a bit too big for that, but scale is a fuzzy thing with LEGO anyway.)

Here we see the snowmobile trailer hitched up:

And here are the last two days’ Star Wars models, ready for combat:

Advent 2011 Day 20

Published / by Bill / 2 Comments on Advent 2011 Day 20

Day 20 of the LEGO City and Star Wars Advent Calendars for 2011.

City seems to be switching to a new theme, perhaps for the final stretch toward Christmas.

In Star Wars, we have a UCS TIE Fighter at minifig scale. It seems odd to me that LEGO have never produced a TIE fighter UCS set – they’ve done an Interceptor and Vader’s TIE Advanced, but not a bog standard TIE fighter. Leave that to the fans, though… here’s a TIE Fighter MOC that looks just like what LEGO ought to have made as a set.

Advent 2011 Day 19

Published / by Bill

Day 19 of the LEGO City and Star Wars Advent Calendars for 2011.

In City we have a safe, which our crook is undoubtedly hoping to pry open, by driving his stolen police car to the bank and using his crowbar.

Star Wars gives us an Imperial Stormtrooper who has been working in the coal mines. Or a TIE pilot.

Here we can see our crook with his getaway car and stolen goods: