I have been accused of procrastinating. That may in part be the role of this blog: to allow me to procrastinate the rest of my life. I am always saying that I will get that job done when I get around to it. Then one day, I was handed a round piece of plastic by one of my former science teachers.
It had four letters written on it: T U I T.
I asked “But what does this mean?”
He replied “Richard, you always say you will do this or do that when you get a round tuit. Now you have one. Nothing will stop you now.”
[Please accept my apologies if English is not your first language. This may not make a lot of sense. “Tuit” is pronounced the same as “to it”. So “When I get a round tuit” sounds the same as “When I get around to it…” This is a common delaying technique used by teenagers, procrastinators and tax evaders. Now read on.]
As an AFOL at public exhibitions, and also when spending time with other AFOLS, I meet may people who look wistfully into the middle distance and tell me that one day they will construct a MOC of their own, At least they will build a MOC when they get a round Tuit ( My Own Creation – really the natural extension of free building with LEGO Bricks). As a public service today, I would like to help you all to get a round TUIT. And I think we should try to make it out of regular bricks.
“But wait” I hear you cry, “Regular bricks aren’t round!”
Well, back in the day when we had nothing but 8-bit graphics to satisfy our entertainment needs, all of our favourite video game characters were made up of a collection of coloured in characters on a grid. Even Pacman was a collection of square dots which, if we stared at hard enough, would turn into a circle, with a missing wedge.
To get started, you will need a collection of lego bricks and plates. The sizes don’t matter too much,but a few largish plates are useful to act as a backing to your round quit. You will need more bricks or plates than you expect, as you may find it quite addictive.
I suggest you then get a piece of graph paper, with a square grid on it. Five millimetres is a good size, as it is almost the same size as a regular 1×1 brick, viewed from above.
Otherwise you can use your favourite search engine to locate some grid paper. You could even add the brand of your favourite Danish interlocking construction bricks to the search terms, and get more options than we are going to discuss today. There are some examples out there that print out at ‘actual life size, so you can construct on the graph paper. Just remember, from the side, a lego brick is not square. I love graph paper to help me to layout the base to a MOC, and given that today our entire model is essentially a base, it is exactly what we need.
So, now you have your graph paper, you should use a compass, or something round, to draw a circle. “How
big a circle?” you ask. “As big as you wish.” Around 10 studs in diameter is probably about as small as it can be before it looks too much like a cut off square.
In this example, I have used a diameter of 20 studs.
Continue the design process
Now you have your circle, mark in the squares where the majority of the square is inside the circle. Leave it blank if the majority of the square is out side the circle. The studs up approach (out of the paper) allows each of our ‘pixels’ to be square. The size of each pixel, however, makes all but the largest of circles look very blocky. In the future, I will look at using a ‘higher resolution’ piece, such as plates to develop the curve.
Let construction begin
I start off by laying out an approximation of the circle with plates, staying inside the lines: if you can’t quite reach the edges, your actual colouring in on the next layer can extent to the border.
Now, extend to the edges with the next layer. Make
sure all of the base layer is secured as you build it up. You can be colourful, or plain if you wish. I just grabbed the colors I had close at hand.
If you wish, get some 1xn plates or tiles, and lay them out to spell ‘TUIT’ on top of your circle.
Now You Can Achieve Anything.
Now that you have got a round TUIT, you can get anything done.
Sort your LEGO pieces, build that model, do that tax return or level the construction up a notch, and make it a bit more round …