The truth about cats and dogs:

What I learned about SNOT from Furry Animals (31021)

IMG_7389One of my favourite sets of the last few years is the creator set 31021: Furry Animals.

The ‘Hero model’ is a cat and mouse, and the secondary (and tertiary?)models are a rabbit and a small dog.  This set contains a few new(to me) ‘SNOT blocks’ and so provides an opportunity to follow on from my recent post about the SNOT techniques used in the Ocean Explorer (31045).  For those wondering, the term SNOT used in the lego context refers to Studs Not (only) on top. So… focussing on techniques used where the directions of the studs is running at right angle to the primary direction of construction.

Once again, I am suspicious that some of the lego designers are trying to tuck little lessons for advanced building techniques into these small sets.  I am now actively exploring my creator sets for hidden lessons, to adapt for my own creations. Why don’t you join me…

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Reboxing:9754 Dark Side Developer Kit

So… for the last 15 years, I have had a circa 2000 ATAT on the mantlepiece, made using 9754 Mindstorms Dark Side Developer Kit. It hasn’t been given much of a run, and I cannot recall ever changing the batteries in the Micro Scout control unit.  I have been starting to become concerned about the possibility of battery leakage.  So… I dIMG_8363ecided to pull the model apart, and replace it in its box.  This is coincidental with a member of OZLUG asking the question ‘Can I make every other major model from this kit with the pieces in the walker?’  (Incidentally, the answer to this is ‘NO’)

This set comes from an era when boxes came with a plastic, compartmentalised insert! So I set about pulling the ‘hero model’ apart, and replacing it in its box.  I am not aiming to sell it in the near future (for a 15 year old set, it has only  appreciated from ~US $100 at release to ~$AU150 on brick link presently for used, with a beaten up box).  I suspect it has much more to teach me. Continue reading

Tips and Techniques: What I learned from 31045

I love Creator sets.

Not only do they make pretty nifty models, they also demonstrate some nifty building techniqIMG_8102 (1)ues. I recently picked up 31045, Ocean explorer (RRP $AU25).  The set has a number of the models to build: A research ship, with a crane and a small submersible; a cargo plane, and a larger submersible.

Each of these models presents a different SNOT (Studs not on top) technique.  These are particularly techniques to set studs at right angles to the primary direction of the build.

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