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  1. greg3

    [MOC] Villa Great Agano

    That is a really nice build!! Love the clever parts usage for the tower shape (as others have said, it has a real "observatory feel" to it!!) and I really like the texture effect of the curved 2x2 round boat plates too. All in all, excellent work!!
  2. greg3

    Ballabreek 2018

    Thanks for the comments... Here's a pic taken this morning of an unusual load being transported through the town by local haulage company "Special Transport". In keeping with their slogan "Anything, to anywhere, at anytime!!", today they're transporting a World War 1 tank!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The tank belongs to the Ballabreek Military History Society (BMHS) and is being sent to a specialist engineering firm to have its tracks and running gear replaced in time for the centenary of the ending of WW1 later this year (in other words I need to change the old light grey wheels/gears and get some Brinckmania track links). Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Recently I've been spending most of my LEGO time building military models using instructions from Brickmania and I thought it'd be cool to try and fit some into the story of Ballabreek. So watch out for more from the Ballabreek Military History Society from time to time over the coming months!! You can see more of the tank in its own topic HERE Thanks for looking...
  3. Hi This my MOD of Brickmania's Renault FT tank of World War 1. The Renault FT was a French light tank introduced towards the end of WW1. Previous French tanks had followed the British idea of a large armoured box on tracks with the main gun(s) forward and machine guns protecting the flanks /rear. The problem with this idea was that the resulting tank was heavy, slow and expensive in materials and men. The solution that the French came up with was a small 2 man vehicle with driver in the forward hull, a gunner in a rotating turret (cannon and machine gun version were produced) and the engine at the rear. The idea was a success; with 5 FT's being produced for the cost of one heavy tank. On the battlefield the tanks would operate in "swarms" to overwhelm the enemy and their small size/weight allowed them to operate in woods and narrow lanes (essential once the stalemate of trench warfare had been broken). Over 3,000 were produced before the war's end and the basic design became the norm for tanks right up to the present day. This MOD is the command/communication variant, the T.S.F which stands for "Telegraphie San Fil" (wireless). Around 200 of these were built and they were used to improve communication between mobile units and for observing/reporting back on the enemy. The hull was unchanged but the turret was replaced with a fixed box-like structure containing a morse code radio and space for the operator and a commander/observer (increasing the tank's crew to 3) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr I kept the Brinckmania hull (built using instructions from their" Great War" instruction book) and added my own superstructure. It's not perfect (the observation cupola should be half a stud wider) and the front should be sloped (I tried using cheese slopes but they looked too steep!) but overall I think it's pretty good and reasonably in scale (the tank itself is too tall but that's LEGO for you!!) I'm still trying out hatch ideas - didn't want it too bulky but I did want to be able to pose it open. I'm also planning to replace the Lego tracks with Brinckmania ones. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Here's one of the crew... had to remove his legs for the looking out the hatch pic!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Finally a rare colour photo of a TSF passing some British troops (loosely based on a period B&W photo I found online) The "Tommies" are from United Bricks and the helmets/rifles are Brickarms. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr I'm currently building a few Brinckmania models and many of them I have plans to MOD so who knows you may be seeing more soon!! Anyway thanks for looking!! Comments always welcome...
  4. greg3

    MOC: The Brixton Hotel

    That's really nice!! Love the colour combinations and the patterns in the floor - definitely suits the era. Although I think my favourite part is the lifts with their cage door effect. Do you plan on doing any more rooms of the hotel? A bedroom/suite perhaps? Excellent work
  5. greg3

    Ballabreek 2018

    Long time, no update so I thought I'd better do something about it with a little "celebrity signing" scene!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr This is local actor "Clutch Studley" signing his new book. It charts the highs and lows of his long acting career which has taken in stage and screen. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr However, he's most well known for playing Officer Bill Und in cult 70's TV show Copcar!! The show featured Officer Und solving crimes with the help of his unusual partner... The Copcar 600 - a robotic, autonomous police car. The show only lasted one season but has since developed a cult following and rumours are that it's set to get a big screen reboot! Many fans of the show have come along to not only meet the man himself but to get to see some rare props from the original show... An iconic screen worn uniform Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr And of course The Copcar 600 itself!!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr As well as getting Mr Studley to sign his book, many fans have brought their vintage Copcar toys to be signed too... A mint-in-box Copcar Construction kit! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr A limited edition Officer Und Action Figure!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr As you can tell I finally got my hands on the Classic Policeman CMF figure. It brought back a few memories as set 600 is the first LEGO set I can remember getting (I must have been about 5!!) so I had to get it into Ballabreek somehow (hence the idea of Copcar!!) Unfortunately I didn't have the parts to recreate the car exactly but I think my version's not too bad! (the micro policeman is from the recent LEGO mini figure factory gift with purchase) Anyway, hope you like it... thanks for looking!
  6. greg3

    Panzer 2 Snow Diorama Small

    Nice build - I'm just getting into military builds myself (currently MODding a few Brinckmania sets!!) and I do like these little early war tanks!! You've created a nice little diorama to go with it too. Great work!
  7. greg3

    Lester's Big Adventure Voting

    12 - 2 points 9 - 1 point
  8. greg3

    Ballabreek 2018

    Keeping the aeronautical theme going (sort of!), this weekend sees the Big Ballabreek Balloon Bash - a family friendly balloon themed weekend. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Down at the harbour the kids can buy a range of balloons and balloon models... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Happy customers... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The more adventurous citizens can take to the air with a ride on a tethered hot air balloon... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The next batch of customers waiting their turn... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The view from the dizzying height of 23 bricks (it would have been higher but I ran out of trans-clear 2x2 round bricks!!) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The idea for this came about after getting the new Balloon Modeller CMF and totally loving the balloon animal accessories!! I also had the MODded hot air balloon from the Prison Island set and figured this was a good way to use both!! Thanks for looking... comments are always welcome!!
  9. I've recently discovered the Brinckmania range of custom LEGO sets and with military history being my second favourite interest (after LEGO of course!) I couldn't resist!! The sets aren't cheap (especially if local customs notice the packages and slap on import taxes!!) but their range of instructions books are perfect (and exempt from tax!). I recently got their Great War instruction book and have been Bricklinking the bits needed to recreate WW1. The first completed model I put together is the Sopwith Camel which I've MODed into an obscure version known as the TF1 (or Trench Fighter). I did a similar thing with the official LEGO Creator Sopwith Camel (10226) a few years ago. Anyway, here's my minifig scale version... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr In early 1918, Sopwith were looking into developing an aircraft for attacking ground targets. The normal Camel and other aircraft designed for air combat tended to suffer heavy casualties when used in this role so Sopwith began by modifying a standard Camel to improve its effectiveness and survivability. First, it's armament was changed from 2 forward firing Vickers guns to 3 Lewis guns. 2 of which were mounted inside the cockpit pointing down through the floor at an angle (the idea being that the plane could fly low and fast over the target strafing it as it went). The 3rd gun was fitted on top of the wing using an Admiralty mount (which had been developed by the Navy for use on ship launched Camels). The aircraft was also given armour plating along its underside to cover the engine, cockpit and fuel tank. The downward pointing guns. I'm not 100% happy with the way the guns are attached but it works and will do for now!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The top wing gun (a Brickarms Lewis gun) It should really be further forward as it was supposed to tip back through the wing cutout. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr A few more pics. As well as changing the guns, I added an official propellor to replace the tiles used in the Brinckmania design. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr At least 2 TF1s were made and sent to France for testing in Feb/March 1918 but it quickly became apparent that they had serious flaws. The armour severely reduced performance and the downward facing guns were impossible to aim with any accuracy (despite experiments with periscope and mirror arrangements) The TF-1 never went into operational use but the lessons learnt were used in the design of a dedicated ground attack aircraft - the Sopwith Salamander. I'm looking forward to making and MODding some more military themed models so watch this space!! Thanks for looking!!
  10. greg3

    Ballabreek 2018

    After a few busy weeks without much time for LEGO, I've finally found some much needed time to get back to Ballabreek!! Today is the 100th anniversary of the formation of the Royal Air Force, so to commemorate this event, the good folks of Ballabreek have the opportunity to get up close to one the RAF's most iconic early fighter aircraft... a Sopwith Camel currently on display at the local airfield. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr This particular aircraft is of special importance to the locals, as it crashed in the village 100 years ago and has since been lovingly restored after its remains were uncovered several years ago (those long term fans of Ballabreek (if such a thing exists) might remember the discovery back in 2015) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr What made this aircraft even more important is that it was a very rare variant of the Sopwith Camel - a TF1 (or Trench Fighter). Fitted with downward firing machine guns and armour plating for ground attacks. In reality only 2 were ever made and sent to France for testing (where they were found to be pretty useless and the idea was scrapped) but who's to say one wasn't lost on a training flight near Ballabreek!! Here the pilot shows off the unique downward firing guns (2 Lewis guns protruding through the cockpit floor and between the wheels!!) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr I had hoped to get a few inflight shots over the village but bad weather prevented the flypast (in other words my phone died before I could take the shots!!) The plane itself is a Brickmania model of a Sopwith Camel made using instructions from their Great War Instruction book with a few MODs to change it into the Trench Fighter version (which actually did exist). Expect to see a few more updates about Ballabreek's military history over the next few months as I've recently discovered Brinckmania and couldn't resist the combination of military history and LEGO (my 2 favourite topics!!). More details on the MODded plane here Thanks for looking
  11. greg3

    The laboratory of Maria Sklodowska-Curie

    I didn't really get going with it but I was looking at a 6 wide vehicle - I was planning to MOD one of the official LEGO vehicles from one of the Winter Village sets (and there seems to be a wide variety of vehicles that were converted - from what I gather Curie went round buying them off people and then adding the X-ray equipment) Also I'm not very good at designing my own vehicles!! Good luck with your version (look forward to seeing it and who knows, I might get round to making my own eventually.... maybe!!)
  12. greg3

    Ballabreek 2018

    A bit of silliness this week as local man, DJ Dave, puts on a special Valentine's Day Disco!! (I had been working on a Batman themed comic set in Ballabreek but had a bit of trouble with the story and needed a break!!) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Request your "special song" and whisk your partner off his/her feet!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr And if you don't have a partner then why not attract one by strutting your stuff on the rotating platform Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Overview of the scene... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Finally a close up of "Dave's Decks" Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr And that, ladies and gents, is what you get when you buy the Lego Batman Movie Justice League Party set for the minifigs and then need to find a use for the rest of the set!!! Anyway, thanks for looking!!
  13. greg3

    Petticoat Lane

    What a great little build!! Excellent use of the friends parts (and no mini-dolls!!) I especially like the cafe design with the way the display window sticks out. I think this would look great extended to show the rest of the lane!! Nice work.
  14. greg3

    [MOC] Who wants to play tennis?

    Nice!! I like the idea of a racket sport centre in what appears to be a rather run down area. I especially like details of the power lines and the squash courts look great too!! Excellent stuff!!
  15. greg3

    Robert Goddard and "Nell"

    Hi This is one of my entries for the"Moment in Space" competition currently running on Lego Ideas... it depicts the first ever successful launch of a liquid fuelled rocket. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The launch took place on March 16th 1926 and ultimately paved the way for most of the rockets and spacecraft launched ever since. It was the work of Robert Goddard who not only pioneered the engine design but also patented multi stage rockets, gyroscopic guidance systems and many of the other technologies that space travel now rely on!! (I wasn't sure how strict Ideas would be on mentioning real people/events so I left Goddard's name out of the actual entry description) I based the build on this photo which has always fascinated me ever since i saw it in a book as a kid... (I always found it amazing that we got from that to the Saturn V, Space Shuttle and beyond!!) I know the baseplate should be white but I couldn't find a suitably clothed torso for a winter scene!! 800px-Goddard_and_Rocket by g.nat, on Flickr Even more incredible are the details on how Nell (as the rocket was named) worked and was launched... The rocket's engine was located in the nose. Below this, protected by a conical heat shield, were fuel tanks: one containing liquid oxygen, the other gasoline. To launch the rocket, a blowtorch was used to ignite gunpowder in the nose cone. Then oxygen from an external tank was fed into the fuel tanks, forcing the 2 liquids along separate pipes until they met in the nose cone. This mixture was ignited by the burning gunpowder to produce thrust. Once the rocket took off, the pressure in the fuel tanks was maintained by evaporating fuel. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Close up of the launch stand... not 100% accurate but the closest I could get with the parts I had!! image by g.nat, on Flickr The actual rocket only flew for 2.5 seconds, achieved an altitude of 41 feet, travelled 184 feet and landed in a cabbage field but without it, we may never have reached the moon!! As Goddard himself said... "The dream of yesterday is the hope of today and the reality of tomorrow" Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Anyway, I hope it's OK to post a link to the actual entry here (if not I'll remove it) Dawn of the Space Age entry Thanks for looking!! Comments are always welcome (and any votes even more so!!)