Friends Second Wave #6: Adventure Camper

Today’s set is LEGO Friends 3184 Adventure Camper.
Friends #3184: Adventure Camper
This set features a motorhome, trailer, two bicycles (including one in dark teal, a new color for bikes), and some campsite details. Our old friend Olivia is back, and a new friend Nicole joins her.

Unlike some of the other models in this wave of Friends, this is not a recolor of an existing LEGO model. It’s pretty much a complete redesign. It bears a passing resemblance to the motorhome in LEGO City Camper (7639) but if you look closer you’ll see that aside from the windscreen and the curved piece above the front seats, there’s not much similarity at all. Like that other motorhome it hinges open in a way that real motorhomes don’t, but the mechanism here is quite different – in camper 7639 both sides of the back portion of the vehicle swing open to the sides; here only one side opens, and it is hinged in the back, not the front. Also here, the roof hinges open. Like all the Friends sets the build is pretty easy, and it contains a lot of new part/color combinations. The RV includes two 1×10 pink bricks, which is a nice addition to the range of parts available in pink, and the 1×4 curved parts in the roof are nice to have in pink as well. There are also three light orange 2×4 tiles, which I haven’t seen before in that color. But the finished model is kind of funny looking, and I don’t like the asymmetry of the roof – the left side is curved pink pieces which is really nice, but the right side is lime green tiles and hinges. They should have at least used pink tiles so the color is symmetrical if nothing else!
Friends #3184: Adventure Camper (Front Seats) Friends #3184: Adventure Camper (Camper Open) Friends #3184: Adventure Camper (Bikes) Friends #3184: Adventure Camper (Stickers & Extra Parts)

The inclusion of bicycles is a nice touch, and I experimented with how to best have a minidoll ride them. Since they’re designed for minifigs, the dolls don’t quite fit perfectly, but I found two good ways to pose them: one with straight legs, similar to a minfig, and one with the hips bent and the feet forward. In both cases the hands can touch the handlebars, but lacking rotatable wrists the dolls can’t grasp the handlebars. That’s better at least than the RV, where their hands don’t go anywhere near the steering wheel – well, the one in the passenger seat can come fairly close! When you sit the two dolls in the front of the RV their arms overlap quite a bit due to the wide position they are in.

Like many of the Friends sets, this one comes with a large assortment of accessory parts – this time, the cooking set in red. The meal that the dolls are preparing to eat is a little strange – two cupcakes (one chocolate, one vanilla) and a carton of orange juice. Meanwhile while they eat dessert a turkey leg is cooking over the fire. I guess when two teenagers go camping without adult supervision, this is the kind of dietary hijinks one should expect.

Fifth Wheel RV

I built this many years ago (2003 or so?) but never posted it online before. It’s been on many BayLUG and BayLTC displays, though. I’m still fairly happy with it, though it could surely be improved in a number of ways.

The trailer attaches via a Technic axle to a bracket in the truck bed, and is a “toy hauler” – it contains an ATV (All Terrain Vehicle) for off road fun. It has two slide-outs, one in the bedroom in the front and another with a dinette in the center.

Click the picture to go to the gallery on Flickr, or view them as a slideshow.

Fifth Wheel RV

Admin note: Over the span of the next few weeks I plan to post a bunch of older models online. After Maker Faire I brought all the boxes of models that have never been posted into the house, and am slowly working through them doing photo shoots and blog entries, and in some cases to make LDraw files for building instructions. So while the quality of construction might not be as good as stuff I would build today, they’re still models I like enough to show at train shows and events like Maker Faire. I hope you enjoy them.

Desert Road Trip

Flickr user jedimasterwagner has made a great little desert diorama, featuring my Shasta Teardrop travel trailer, a Jeep by Mike Psiaki, and a cactus based on an idea that Flickr user brickpoor brought back from BrickWorld.

Desert Road Trip

Found via Lego Diem. Looks like the diorama was created using LDraw and rendered in 3D. I think it came out quite good – and great work on the mosaic billboard!

Fleetwood Revolution LE 42K Motorhome

This high-end luxury motorhome allows you to travel in class! Features three slide-outs, including one that is almost the entire left side, a powerful diesel engine in back, two bathrooms, plentiful storage underneath, a well-appointed kitchen, and much more.

Fleetwood Revolution LE 42K Motorhome

It is based on the Fleetwood Revolution LE 42K Motorhome but I should admit I took a lot of artistic license, especially with the artwork on the sides.

This is pretty much the diametric opposite from my last RV model, the Shasta Teardrop Travel Trailer that I made a couple of weeks ago. While that one was small and minimalistic (with only the most basic interior, and no removable roof) with classic styling from the 60’s, this one is modern and contains all the amenities you could wish for. However, neither model has 4 wheels, so both are eligible for the All But Four challenge on LUGNuts. It’s also eligible for a new Flickr group I created, LEGO RVing.

Hope you enjoy it, and please post comments here or on Flickr. If you want to see it in person, come to the BayLUG exhibit at MoAH in Palo Alto, CA – I’ll be bringing it there tomorrow and it will be there through January 11, 2009.

Click the photo above for the photoset on Flickr, or view it as a slideshow.

Shasta Teardrop Trailer featured on LAMLradio Podcast

I just wanted to say thanks to Jonathan Bender for selecting my Shasta Teardrop Travel Trailer as his “MOC of the Week” when he was interviewed on LAMLradio Episode 69. (If you just want to hear what they had to say about my trailer, skip to 39:02)

Shasta Teardrop Travel Trailer

Of course, thanks to The Brothers Brick for featuring the trailer a week ago, as that’s where Jonathan saw it…

If you don’t listen to LAMLradio, I highly recommend it. Hosts James Wadsworth and Aaron Andrews (“DARKspawn”) feature interviews with movers and shakers of the LEGO scene, talk about LEGO news, and discuss a few key “MOCs of the week” in each episode, which come out about once a week.

Lately James has also been putting out video podcasts, called appropriately enough LAMLtv. I’ve done two of those as guest episodes, featuring footage and interviews from BrickCon in Seattle last October, and have plans to do a few more. I’ll post those here too, of course.

(In case you were wondering, “LAML” stands for “LEGO and more LEGO”)

Shasta Teardrop Travel Trailer

My latest vehicle MOC is a camping trailer, based on the 1960’s Shasta travel trailer. Click the image to view the set on Flickr, or check out the slideshow.

Shasta travel trailer

I built it for the campground scene that Loren built for BayLUG’s exhibit at the Museum of American History in Palo Alto. The display will be open to the public through January 11, 2009, on Fridays through Sundays. If you’re in the local area, come on and check it out one of these weekends.

I had made two RV’s before this, a Class C motorhome and a “toy hauler” fifth wheel trailer. But since I didn’t think Loren’s campground would work with just two campsites filled, I got inspired to make another. I built it to be compatible with the “Range Rover” from the new 7635 Horse Trailer set, partly because I didn’t want to also have to build a tow vehicle, and partly because I really like the look of that car.

As for the trailer design, I wanted to build something iconic, and thought about doing an Airstream but the curves were too complex. I thought of the “teardrop” trailers, since they have flat straight sides. I did some image searches online and found a few images of the Shasta trailer, and decided to build that:

Daisy Tin can tourist Shasta Bay