Builders’ Journeys: Learning To Swoosh.

Back in the mid 1970’s, I was prone to bouts of tonsillitis, and, as was the fashion back then, I went into hospital for a tonsillectomy. Apart from a spectacular bout of coughing up blood a few days later, everything was unremarkable.

But that’s not what I remember most vividly.

Certainly the diet of jelly and icecream were a highlight, but within 6 months I had forgotten them.

I remember receiving 687 Caravelle Aeroplane around this time. The wings were the first ‘non rectangular’ elements that I owned, the printed bricks were terrific as a way to represent the windows, and the wheels. They offered a special challenge.

The set was released in 1973 and remained in the catalogue until 1975. It had 43 parts.

687: Caravelle Aeroplane – image from

The wheel needed the tyre to be added, and then placed in its frame. There were three of these wheels. Until I stood on one a year or two later. Then I had 2. This was probably the first element I remember breaking.

On a positive note, I was always frustrated with the ‘slow normal jet’ design, and I remember attempting to rotate the wings 90° for a sleek, swept back Concorde like look.

This is probably one of the first sets that I remember actively swooshing – waving around while making jet engine noises.

The Caravelle Plane, as it first appeared in the 1973 UK catalog (image source: brickset)

Years later some tragedy befell one of the wings- it might have been dropped in the backyard, in front of a bicycle. Or stepped on. Certainly one broke.

Fortunately, a couple of years later, the space sets introduces a wider range of wing elements. However, the Caravelle Aeroplane was my introduction to swept back wing elements, and swooshing.

All because I had my tonsils taken out.

I’m sure you’d like to hear from someone other than me…

We all have that special set: maybe a favorite build, maybe the set that got you interested in something, maybe the first set you ought as an adult. If you have a LEGO Set that evokes special memories for you and would like to share your story, send me an email: , or reach out on Facebook or Instagram.

Until Next Time,

Play Well!

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