28 August 2018

The LEGO® Minifigure at 40: Inside the factory

The LEGO® Group have sent us these amazing images to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the LEGO minifigure and we just had to share them with you.

How are LEGO® minifigures printed? And as the elements that make up their torsos and legs are moulded separately, how are they then assembled? These pictures come from the production line of the LEGO factory in Kladno, Czech Republic. Tap/click any image to enlarge. And scroll down for video!

LEGO minifigure heads being printed


Wheee! Heads will roll... and then they'll get printed.

The LEGO® Minifigure at 40: Moulds

The LEGO® Group have sent us these amazing images to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the LEGO minifigure and we just had to share them with you.

How are LEGO® minifigures made? Here are all the different moulds that make the parts needed for one LEGO minifigure. Click/tap any image to enlarge.


The LEGO® Minifigure at 40: development prototypes

The LEGO® Group have sent us these amazing images to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the LEGO minifigure and we just had to share them with you.

Meet the minifigures before minifigures. Here are three of the original minifigures released in 1978 alongside their rather spooky developmental stages. Tap/click any image to enlarge.

Development of the LEGO® police minifigure



  1. I'm glad they ditched ol' lumpy-squarehead guy pronto. 
  2. The second one you probably recognise, as this non-moving style of minifigure was released in sets in the mid-1970s. It is interesting to note the filenames of the images we were sent indicate these are called "stage extras", a name I've never heard before.
  3. Amusing that it took until 2013 for TLG to release the third one, but pretty cool that they did!
  4.  The final figure as released in 1978 – note the stickered torso. Boy did I hate those as a kid! Sort of charming now though.

25 August 2018

LEGO® Harry Potter: 71403 Hogwarts Castle

LEGO® have just released their second largest set ever, 71043 Hogwarts Castle, so Elspeth De Montes thought we would take a look at the new elements. With 6,020 parts and a £349.99/ US$399.99/ 399.99€ price tag, perhaps we should warn you to pop the kettle on a get yourself a cuppa as there are quite a few magical elements to uncover in this huge set.

To start, there are three interesting new moulds all introduced in Brick Yellow [TLG]/ Tan [BL].



The first two are currently exclusive to 71043 Hogwarts Castle, and have an important role in depicting the microscale arched windows of Hogwarts’ Great Hall.

19 August 2018

PdC Parts Fest 2018: Rounded Plate 1x2

At Paredes de Coura (PdC) Fan Weekend in Portugal in June 2018, New Elementary ran a 'parts festival' workshop where 25 builders were given 11 of the new LEGO® parts released in 2018 to experiment with. They used these in combination with general part stock (provided from the magnificent collection of Comunidade 0937) to create as many ideas, tablescraps, techniques and small MOCs as they could and we’re sharing the most interesting and useful ones with you. Huge thanks to Andrew Tipping for taking the photographs.

Today we look at the curved 1x2 plate which we chose in Black (Element ID 6210270 | Design ID 35480).

The ability to interconnect many of them into a chain allows for many interesting sculptural possibilities, like this balloon animal!



13 August 2018

LEGO® Minifigures: Tara Wike & Austin Carlson interview

The LEGO® Minifigures theme has given us a great deal of interesting new parts, particularly minifigure accessories, since the arrival of the first blind bags eight years ago. At the Recognised LEGO Fan Media Days, Are J. Heiseldal sat down for a chat with designers Tara Wike and Austin Carlson to see if we could make them spill the beans on what the future holds (not really).

You represent a very successful line – since the beginning in 2010, and I did some counting, there’s been 441 figures released…
Tara: Oh my God. I lost count after we reached the 300 mark. I stopped counting then.

That’s 55 per year, pretty much one per week, for eight years. Are you going to slow down?
Austin: I don’t think so.
Tara: Not if I have anything to say about it.

7 August 2018

LEGO® Ideas 21311 Voltron: the parts

Chris McVeigh takes a look at what makes up Voltron, Defender of the Universe; the newest set from LEGO® Ideas. Set 21311 has 2,321 pieces – including lots of silver ones – and is now available priced £159.99 / US$179.99 / 179.99€.

Leandro (Lendy) Tayag’s winning LEGO® Ideas submission blasts its way to market as 21311 Voltron. The towering robot defender comes to life by combining five mechanized lions, each which is a separate model in this set. So how does Voltron stack up (both literally, and in terms of new elements)? Let’s take a closer look!

4 August 2018

LEGO® Harry Potter and the Spurious Sprue

While some fans will be thrilled at the return of LEGO® Harry Potter, we were more excited about the arrival of the new wand element (Design ID 36752) which Elspeth De Montes examined recently. But as she now explores, there is more to the element than simply two wonderful wands: there is a little piece of plastic designed to hold them neatly together in the mould – the sprue.

Due to numerous reader questions, comments and ideas across social media, we’ve decided the wand sprue is worth a closer look. It is anchor-shaped and approximately half the depth of a tile, with a flat side and a slightly rounded side.


1 August 2018

LEGO® Technic 42082 Rough Terrain Crane

New sets from the LEGO® Technic range are available as of today, and first up Ryan Welles takes a look at the biggest of the bunch – 42082 Rough Terrain Crane. It's got 4,057 parts and retails for US$299.99 / £229.99 (at time of writing it is 12% off at Amazon UK).

Bigger, stronger, faster: these seem to be the adages of the LEGO® Technic design team for the past couple of years. Nearly every year, Technic sets get bigger and more impressive. Where once a 1,800 piece kit was considered a rather stellar feat, now a multitude of parts seems to be the rule rather than the exception with the product range's flagship models. Earlier this year, 42083 Bugatti Chiron was the second biggest set in piece count after 2016's 42055 Bucket Wheel Excavator. But hardly two months later, the number one position has been seized by this year's flagship model: 42082 Rough Terrain Crane.

The mere size of this crane urges the question: how much pressure and force can ABS actually take? And it holds up surprisingly well. There have been a number of large cranes produced over the years and this 2018 behemoth does not offer groundbreaking or original functions. What future lies ahead?