24 July 2019

Plant or Animal? A closer look at Plant w/3.2 Shaft

Posted by Elspeth De Montes
Bright Bluish Green [TLG]/ Dark Turquoise [BL] Plant, W/3.2 Shaft, No. 2 (Element ID 6262134 | Design ID 49577), known as 'Plant Thallus, Seaweed' on BrickLink, appears in LEGO® Friends underwater themed sets released this month in Europe.  I initially thought this element was depicting coral rather than seaweed, but its official LEGO name suggests it is a plant, not an animal.

Either way, this interesting new element immediately caught our eye and we thought it would be fun to take a closer look.


The plant element itself covers an area approximate 4x4 studs but you can see that the three studs-with through-holes are spaced across a 3x3 triangle that lines up perfectly in system.

Each plant element has seven 3.18mm bar ends, one stud-with-through-hole in the vertical plane and three stud-with-through-hole in the horizontal plane.

To attach the anti-studs on the back to a plate, you have to raise the plant at least one plate higher to allow the body of the plant to clear the studs and allow complete attachment.

There are two ways to attach two connections at a time to another coral plant element. In both the configurations below, 3.18mm bar and stud-with-through-hole can connect at the same time but these were the only ones for this combination.

Obviously there are many more single connection combinations as any of the seven 3.18 bar ends can be inserted into the stud-with-through-hole. Vertical stacking is easy this way but there are 138 different ways to attach two of these elements (I think...)

In addition,  the plant element can be stacked using the studs-with-through-holes, you could just connect one which would allow the elements to 'spiral' but I chose to stack using all three in this example. Is it just me or is this starting to look a bit like a piston engine?

Accessorise your Plant

Another bag of new elements is associated with the plant/coral element. Vibrant Coral Accessories, Marine Life, No. 1 (6262127|49595). We were fortunate enough to see these elements being made in the Moulding Factory in Billund recently where they are automatically bagged after production, ready for inclusion in sets.

Each bag contains two Starfish, two Conch shells, two small shells, two Flat Fish, two Seahorses, one large Shell and one Octopus. The Flat Fish, Conch shell and the Seahorse all have a 3.18mm bar connection while the others all have an anti-stud on the back.

41378 Dolphins Rescue Mission

I purchased 41378 Dolphins Rescue Mission which had 3 Plant elements and a bag of Vibrant Coral fishy accessories. Within the set, the main use for the plant is attached to the underwater wreck and as a small underwater 'island' for fish and minidolls to explore.

Having a Play

One of the first things that popped into my head when I was looking at this element was that is looked a bit like a neuron or nerve cell.  With some Sand Yellow Bread Bun (6147214|25386) myelin sheaths and a White Round Sign W. Snap (4116816|30261) as the cell nucleus, my neuron was complete.

Despite the colour, I felt that this plant still had the feel of a flowering cactus - perhaps some tunbleweed and dust would help to clarify the species.

With so many possible connections, this element has great botanical potential. I built this tree branch as a simple example that could be developed into a full tree with more time and elements!

Plant, W/3.2 Shaft, No. 2 (6262134|49577) is only available in Bright Bluish Green at present but other colours would be most welcome. You can find it in five different Friends sets that are all currently available within Europe, and due for release in the US/CA in August.

Where to find Plant, W/3.2 Shaft, No. 2 (6262134|49577)

The number in brackets corresponds to the number of new plant elements in the set.
  • 41337 Underwater Loop (2)
  • 41375 Heartlake City Amusement Pier (2)
  • 41378 Dolphins Rescue Mission (3)
  • 41380 Lighthouse Rescue Centre (2)
  • 41381 Rescue Mission Boat (2)

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  1. Interestingly the descriptions on shop.lego.com for the sets that contain it all describe it as "coral" and not "seaweed" (at least for Australian English)

  2. Thanks for this in-depth look at the new part!

  3. Ah yes, my intention was to use this plant element as a cactus too. Neuron is awesome though.

  4. So if you saw these being auto-bagged after coming off the production line, perhaps you can confirm a long-standing (~13 years now) theory of mine. Are these accessory bags run as a single multi-element mold, or are the individual components molded separately before being grouped together and bagged? Ever since the Batman theme debuted, I've assumed they just cut them all into a single mold, since the individual components were never meant to be released individually. Since Batman, we've also seen a Clone Trooper/Mandalorian pack, and at least two Friends packs (one kitchenware, one hair accessories), and the closest I've come to an answer is seeing the components listed as a single item in the parts list at the back of the instruction booklet.