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About greg3


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  1. Ballabreek 2018

    As always, thanks for the comments... Glad you're still enjoying Ballabreek - it certainly has gone through a few changes but you comments inspired me to dig out an old photo of how Ballabreek began (as you say, 6 baseplates (on a chest of drawers!!) This area is still the heart of the current town - although only the small shop survives!! dscn5816 by g.nat, on Flickr Nothing wrong with questions and here are the answers!! The future of the old train is still uncertain (until I need the parts for something else!!) so who knows - we may see it again (train or mining museum perhaps?) As for the haulage firm? Oh I'm sure they'll be kept busy over the next few months!! Finally, the locals are used to the noise/dust of the mine (it's been part of the town for over 100 years) but modern concerns about the environment and road congestion has got the new owner looking at alternatives which brings us to this week's update... Today we're off to the small airfield on the outskirts of the town to see a demonstration fight of "The Dragonfly". This twin engined, electric aircraft is an upsized version of the drones you see being flown everywhere these days. Developed by a group of local engineers, it's hoped that it will eventually replace helicopters in many roles and so they've invited a number of investors and potential customers along to see the craft being put through its paces. First a chance to have a close up look at the Dragonfly... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr As well as businesspeople looking to invest, there are representatives of the emergency services, the post office, courier companies, movie makers the media and more!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr After a good look around, they take their seats for the flight demonstration. Although it will be flying autonomously, current rules mean that it has to have a qualified pilot on board (but unless there is a problem, he'll keep his hands clear of the controls) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The demonstration flight involves 20 minutes of manoeuvres and aerobatics all performed by the onboard computers. One of the engineers behind the project gives a running commentary of the flight and answers any questions the guests might have. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Finally, the craft touches down safely having impressed many in the audience with its speed and manoeuvrability. Hopefully, their investment and support will fund development aimed at improving the craft's cargo carrying capacity. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr So, as you can tell, my latest purchase has been the new 3in1 Creator set (31071) and I love that little aircraft!! I'm currently looking to build a few variants in different colour schemes (including for the mining company so watch this space!!) Anyway, thanks for looking (taking pics on the poorly lit shelf where the airfield is was challenging to say the least!! But I think they came out OK) Comments welcome as always!!
  2. Ballabreek 2018

    For this week's update, we check in on progress at the mine... As you can see, production is back up and running. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr New machinery has been in to replace the older models. Although they look similar these new models are far more reliable and fuel efficient. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The tramway has seen the biggest change... gone is the old diesel engine to be replaced with "smart carts" fully automated, they transport the mined ore out of the mine to be transferred to trucks that take it away to be processed offsite. The new carts required the replacement of the old traditional rails.. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Here we see the very first load of ore being removed from the mine under the watchful eyes of its new owner... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The mine foreman shows Mr Wayne that the ore contains valuable minerals (not just the gold that had been mined here for centuries, but other minerals that will be key to designing the next generation of batteries - vital for many future technologies) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr As for all the old mining equipment? True to his promise to support local businesses, Mr Wayne has given a local transport company the contract to remove it to be scrapped dismantled/sorted/stored for use in future MOCs!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr I had hoped to have more of the new mining sets by now but my local toy shop doesn't seem to have them in so I've had to make do with the small builds from set 60188 which I got online. I have to admit to being a bit sad to be ditching the old diesel train but progress is progress!! Once I get the other mining sets, I've got plans for the mine now it has a new owner so watch this space!!!! Anyway, thanks for looking (and apologies for the rather poorly-lit photos)
  3. Brilliant stuff... the name is just perfect!! Nice build too!!
  4. [MOC] Brick CIty Brewery

    What a fantastic building!! I love the curved section and roof supports and the way the wooden clad section stands out. Looking forward to seeing the interior... and maybe tasting the beer!! Excellent work!!
  5. Personally, my least favourite of the series is Santa's Workshop (I know that'll probably get me on the naughty list!!). Not only doesn't it fit in with the village but it doesn't even work as a toy factory as the machinery has to go outside!! (I'm not sure if there's an Elf Union but I'm sure they'd find those working conditions unacceptable!!) Seriously though, this past Christmas it was the only set I didn't bother building (apart from the old toyshop which has been replaced by the newer one). I actually really like the post office (and its van) and even the carousel makes sense if you imagine set up on the edge of the village as part of a festive market/fair.
  6. French Empire models

    Wow!! They are stunning builds - I think my favourite is the second one especially the canopy and all those plants!!! Amazing stuff!! The other 2 builds are pretty fantastic too!! Excellent work!!
  7. Aladdin

    Nice!! I've never seen Aladdin but I like the way you've contrasted the two worlds (rich and poor) and the sense of action you have going on in the market (especially the monkey!!)
  8. Ballabreek 2018

    Thanks for your comments... I think it's pretty safe to assume that at some point a Batcave of some description may make an appearance!! Also, the War Memorial is safe - in fact I'm thinking of replacing the church with a small Military Museum (charting the effect of war on the citizens of the Ballabreek from the Napoleonic Era, through both World Wars and up to today) but that's all for the future... this week we're off to the harbour where a special visitor has arrived... The Coastguard's latest patrol vessel Adjutor... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The main reason for its visit was to see if it could safely dock in the newly deepened harbour... thanks to the vessels advanced computer controlled manoeuvring thrusters it can!! Although it's a tight fit and is an option that will be rarely used as the ship patrols a wide area around the Island. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr While it's here, the boat is hosting an open day so that the locals can go aboard and have a look around... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Ballabreek's permanent rescue craft (a small inshore rescue boat) is also open to the public... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr You can see more of the Adjutor in its own thread here The idea for this little set up came about as today saw the last slipway launch of our local lifeboat as both it and its boathouse are due to be replaced. Today is also the day that Sir William Hillary is commemorated - he founded the Royal National Lifeboat Institution while living in the Isle of Man and is buried in a local church. Anyway, thanks for looking... comments are always welcome.
  9. Hi Here's the latest addition to my Coastguard fleet - The Adjutor (named after the patron saint of swimmers, boaters, and drowning victims!!) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr As you can see, it's a MOD of the boat from set 60167. I really liked the design of the official version but the dinghy launching ramp behind the bridge just didn't seem quite right (more suited to the lifeboat of a large cargo vessel - although it was great fun to launch the dinghy and watch it slide across the table!!) so I replaced it with a crane so the dinghy can be launched/retrieved easily. While I wanted to make it a bit more realistic I also wanted it to still look like a Lego set and be able to deal with any maritime emergency - hopefully I've achieved that!! Here are a few pics of the ship undergoing sea trials... The powerful searchlight allows it to operate at night or in fog... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr A fully equipped medical room forward of the bridge allows the crew's trained doctor to give immediate medical assistance to casualties. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Inside the bridge/wheelhouse is the helmsman's position (thanks to advanced technology the boat can be controlled by 1 person but it's normal crew is 4 - captain, helmsman, 2 small boat crew who also act as engineer, rescue swimmer/medic.) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr On top of the bridge is a water cannon for firefighting duties (it's controlled from the bridge) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr At the rear is the boat deck where a small rescue craft is stored. A crane allows it to be quickly launched and retrieved. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The rear deck also houses a powerful winch to tow disabled vessels back to port. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr So there we have it - The Adjutor and its crew - keeping the blue baseplates seas safe for us all!! Thanks for looking - comments are always welcome!
  10. [MOC] The Simpsons Springfield Skyline

    Very nice... I've not watched an episode of the Simpsons for years but I recognize the buildings straight away!! I especially like the church. Excellent stuff!!
  11. Fisherman log

    Very nice!! I love the ramshackle appearance you've created and that roof looks great!! Excellent work!!
  12. HI Here's my take on the plane Steve Trevor flies in the Wonder Woman movie (and set 76075). I believe it's supposed to be a Fokker Eindecker so I gave the official version a bit of a tweak to make it more accurate. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The main change was the addition of the control cables. The original Eindecker used "wing warping" to control the plane left and right. Moving the joystick caused one wing to be pulled downward and the other to be pulled upwards causing the plane to bank. My version lacks a few cables but I think it still looks the part!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr I also replaced the stud shooters with a single, more realistic looking machine gun. In the later half of 1915, the Eindeckers all but ruled the skies over the Western Front as they were the first plane to have the machine gun synchronised to the propellor - meaning it could fire forwards without hitting the blade. The French and British planes had to rely on a second gunner which added weight (or the pilot had to fire guns mounted on the top wing making aiming much harder). This period was known as the Fokker Scourge and lasted until the Allies could capture an intact synchronisation system to copy. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr I also tried to improve the tail - the actual aircraft should have an almost circular tail so my version's not perfect. I also wanted to add some insignia - I didn't have any German crosses but I did have a few RAF roundels from an old Adventurer's set so it became a British plane!! (The background to this is that it was captured by Trevor's intelligence unit and is now being used by them to investigate rumours of a new German weapon... project Ares!!) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Finally a shot with Trevor himself... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr As a fan of military history (and superheroes!) I quite enjoyed putting this together and who knows, I may even add the rest of Trevor's unit and send them out on some missions!! Anyway thanks for looking... comments are always welcome.
  13. Ballabreek 2018

    Hi (and Happy New Year to you all!!) What better way to start 2018 than with a new topic for my LEGO layout - the small town of Ballabreek. For those new to Ballabreek which is located on a fictional island (that may or may not bear some resemblance to the Isle of Man (where I live)), the town's name means "Place of the Brick" in Manx. Over the years, the town has grown from a small village (previous yearly updates can be found here in the Town forum) and as far as possible is made up of official sets from a range of themes (albeit often MODed). I hope to keep this topic updated weekly with a mixture of stories and new builds which I hope you will enjoy!! But to begin with, a quick tour of the town... Our tour begins in the centre of the town; a small park, tram stop, bus stops, automated bank and shop selling basic groceries etc. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Across the road is the main shopping area. Current businesses include; a LEGO store, a newsstand, M's Gemstore (above it lives the mysterious Dr Stephen Strange!), a bike shop and barbers. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Behind the shops is a narrow one-way residential street. Houses are small but modern and well equipped. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Nearby is the town's small harbour area featuring an open air pool, a boardwalk area used for public events, a burger bar, dive shop and coastguard lookout tower. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Heading back towards the centre of town, we pass the small chapel and medical centre (this area is likely to undergo some major changes this year as I don't think these buildings fit in any more) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr On the edge of town are the police and fire stations (it wouldn't be a LEGO town without them!!) as well as a recycling area. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr And the town's major employers (a mix of the old and new) - a mine and a space technology centre. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Behind the mine is a footpath leading out into the countryside. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Within a few miles of the town (on nearby shelves!!) are a camping area and small airfield (used mainly for helicopters) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Finally an aerial view of the whole town Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr So what does 2018 have instore for Ballabreek? Well a few months ago, an incident involving toxic waste, criminal gangs and corrupt owners saw the mine closed down. See the story here This put the town's economic future in jeopardy but now hope has arrived in the form of Wayne Industries who have purchased the mine. Today sees the mine officially taken over and the head of Wayne Industries, Bruce Wayne himself, is visiting the site and being interviewed by local media. He explains that his aim is to re-employ many of the former workers and to invest in new equipment to increase productivity. He has also pledged to fund other local community and environmental projects. Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr So will the mine and therefore the town prosper? Watch this space to find out!! As you can tell I like to incorporate other themes into my town so look out for future posts to be a mixture of the everyday and the more unusual but for now thanks for looking. Comments are always welcome!!
  14. [MOD] 75189 AT-M6

    Hi Treated myself to the Last Jedi Heavy Walker for Christmas... a nice set but I thought the interior lacked a little something!! After looking in the Last Jedi Cross-section book I decided to add some detail. First off, a control station for the main canon (a modified turbolaser according to the book) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Not a lot of available space thanks to the technic structure and I wasn't going to take it all apart (!!) but I managed to get in a control panel and sighting/aiming viewfinder... might see if I can find some suitable stickers to break up all the black! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr The operator has to stand (but in the reference book the 2 men operating the canon stand up so I'm not to worried about that!!) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Although the walker is designed as a mobile artillery piece it can carry troops (12 according to the book). Here they are deploying during combat... Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Leaping off the deployment platform, they rely on a repulsor belt to slow their descent (I made that bit up as a winch/drop cables were too complicated!!) Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Inside, more troops wait their turn... I really wanted to fit seating but there just was't room without a major redesign!! Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr Untitled by g.nat, on Flickr I'm not too bothered about 100% accuracy and have taken a few liberties!! I just wanted a set I can "play" with and I'm sure others will do a much better job at MODing this set but I'm pretty pleased with my version!! Thanks for looking and comments are always welcome...
  15. EB Xmas Raffle 2017 - Winners per day calendar

    Unfortunately no manatee for me this year (unlike last year) but congratulations to all the lucky winners and thanks to Copmike for organizing the raffle. Hope all have a great Christmas and Happy New Year!!