Category: Conferences

Save 9V Trains Minfig Protest

Published / by Bill

In BayLUG‘s recent exhibit at MoAH, Bruce Chamberlain set up a display of minifigs protesting to save the 9V trains line. Here’s a pic:

The Save 9V Trains campaign is a grasroots movement by adult LEGO fans to try to persuade the LEGO company to not discontinue the old, rail-powered, 9V train system. Last year LEGO introduced a new battery-powered, IR-controlled system which may be better for little kids, but the motors are underpowered and the system is not considered practical for adult train displays such as put on by the various LEGO train clubs.

If you want your voice to be heard, visit the Save 9V Trains site and register your opinion![tags]lego,trains,9v,save 9v trains[/tags]

No NWBrickCon for Me

Published / by Bill / 2 Comments on No NWBrickCon for Me

It’s official, I’m not going to Northwest BrickCon. Having just gone to BrickFest a month ago I really can’t justify another trip right now, and besides BayLUG is having a meeting that weekend.

I was really hoping to go to NWBC to meet some of the folks who weren’t able to come to BF. I met a lot of west coast LEGO folks at BricksWest 2003, but haven’t seen any of them since, except for a few who made it to BF this year. Hopefully next year, NWBC and BF won’t be so close together!

I am still hoping to make it to BrickSouth next spring in Atlanta. I met a few of the Georgia classic space guys at BF and am looking forward to that event. Hopefully I can build some kind of impressive spacecraft to show there.

Best of BrickFest 2006

Published / by Bill / 2 Comments on Best of BrickFest 2006

I’ve finally had a chance to go over all the photos I previously posted from BrickFest, and selected what I feel are the best. Best of Brickfest Some are great photos, while others are photos of great things. Still others are just photos of things that are quintsentially BrickFest. Click the picture to the right to view the 79 pictures I selected, or go straight to a slide show.

I also added tags and titles to all the photos I had uploaded, and deleted a few that were redundant or out of focus. If you would like to see all the pictures, click these links:

[tags]lego, brickfest, brickfest2006[/tags]

BrickFest 2006, Day 3 – Turn out the lights, the party’s over…

Published / by Bill / 3 Comments on BrickFest 2006, Day 3 – Turn out the lights, the party’s over…

So that brings us to the final day of BrickFest 2006. My pictures are up on Flickr and just about everyone’s gone home.Brickfest  Day 3 I started the day by attending a discussion on Capital Ships run by some of the experts from, including Jon Palmer, Adrian Drake, Mark Sandlin, and Chris Giddens. We met in a conference room on the first floor where we discussed some of the techniques and challenges for building and transporting very large spaceships made of LEGO, and then we went up to the exhibit hall where some of these things were demonstrated on the ships there.

After that I went to a discussion on LEGO as art vs. LEGO as toy, which was led by Roy T Cook, who in addition to being a LEGO builder is also a professor at Villanova University. I think the consensus was that while LEGO is a toy, it can be used as an art medium, but it depends on a number of factors including the context in which the model is made. I learned a lot about the philosophy of art and it gave me a lot to think about.

The afternoon was taken up with dealing with the crowds who attended the public exhibition. After they cleared out around 4 pm, we started tearing down the displays in the exhibit hall. My vignettes took about 30 seconds to tear down, but some of the guys didn’t finish until after midnight. We had closing ceremonies in the evening with a lot of door prizes being handed out. I didn’t win any, but I was pretty happy winning the small vignette contest.

Holly and I went out to dinner at a great Japanese restaurant in Fairfax called Blue Ocean (where we had also had the most amazing lunch on Friday). The food was great, but they were very busy so the service was slow.

After dinner we returned to the hotel where I hung out with the Classic Space guys and we stood around chatting until they were done tearing down, then we retired to the (closed) hotel bar where we all sat around talking until about 1 am. I drove Tom McDonald to the airport, came back to the hotel, and went to bed. I can’t wait for next year! In the meantime I hope we can attend Northwest BrickCon in Seattle and/or BrickSouth in Atlanta next spring.[tags]lego, brickfest, brickfest2006[/tags]

Brickfest 2006, Day 2 – and some good news

Published / by Bill / 4 Comments on Brickfest 2006, Day 2 – and some good news

I’ve uploaded my pictures of Day 2 of Brickfest 2006 to Flickr.Brickfest MOC Exhibit - Day 2

The good news? We won!!! Our model “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” won the award for best small vignette out of all the vignette models at Brickfest! Holly and I are very pleased. Thanks to everyone who voted for it. Here’s a picture I took the other day of the winning model:
Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening[tags]lego,brickfest,brickfest2006[/tags]

Brickfest 2006, Day 1

Published / by Bill

Day one of Brickfest 2006 is done.Brickfest MOC Exhibit - Day 1

I spent a lot of time looking over the MOCs that had been brought in since the night before, and attended a facinating presentation on making brickfilms, which I recorded on my camcorder and plan to post on YouTube soon. The exhibit halls had been updated quite a lot with new models being brought in that morning so I took a lot of new pictures.[tags]lego,brickfest,brickfest2006[/tags]

Brickfest MOC Exhibit – Setup

Published / by Bill

The annual Brickfest LEGO convention has begun! Brickfest MOC Exhibit - Setup It starts today (Friday) but all day yesterday folks were setting up their models in the exhibit room. I took these photos late last night.

This is the first time I’ve been able to attend Brickfest, though I have gone to a similar conference, BricksWest, twice. Brickfest is being held in the Sheraton in Tysons Corner, VA and is being put on by folks from the Washington DC area LEGO club, WAMALUG. Holly and I are staying at the hotel here and will go visit her family in Pennsylvania afterward.

The LEGO designer moonbase Contest seems to have been won by my favorite – Hungry Hippos. Or at least, I spotted it in the Moonbase layout.

If you’re at Brickfest introduce yourself to me. If not, keep watching the blog as I’ll be adding entries all weekend. But now, I gotta get downstairs and see what’s going on![tags]lego,brickfest,brickfest2006[/tags]

LEGO embraces Moonbase

Published / by Bill / 1 Comment on LEGO embraces Moonbase

The LEGO company has set a challenge to their own designers – create a moonbase module and present it at Brickfest!

I think this is the first time that LEGO has embraced a fan-created system like this. It’s great news for the relationship between adult fans of LEGO (AFOLs) and the LEGO company.

You can vote for your favorite of the designs presented. Here are the candidates; click the images to see more pictures:

1. The Loony Luna Knight

2. Command and Defence

3. Squidman Module

4. Space Hungry Hippos

5. Ice Planet Dome

Personally I voted for the Hungry Hippos. Remember that game from when we were kids in the 70’s? See the video if you’re not convinced just how cool this LEGO model is![tags]lego,moonbase,space,contest,brickfest[/tags]