Erik Leppen

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About Erik Leppen

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    Game development, roller coasters, mathematics, LEGO


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  1. Wow. Just, wow. It's very realistic, You have to look really closely to see it's Lego. Also, the white/gray/black combination works really well, and the decals and red warning stripes stand out very nicely. Really a wonderful model. It's been a long time I have seen such a beautiful Lego crane The Mercedes truck looks small in comparison, but is also a great model in its own right.
  2. Cool to see so many enthousiastic replies by everyone! I feel honored :) I put everything together and shot some photos of the whole model, but please bear in mind it's not done yet. As you can see, I added red "boxes" with 4x4 tiles below the front end of the bed. To start with the bad news: somehow, the gearbox is clicking when trying to use the second crane function (topmost LA). So I have to dig into that again and see if anything can be done. But at least there's room to add a 12:20 pair to make the movement slower and the required torque a bit less. But I don't know if that'll be enough. The gaertrain to the topmost LA is rather long (as with 8258) and a lot of the L motor's power is lost (and I really don't want to use XL. The L motor fits so nicely right now) The good news is, the clicking of the outriggers has been solved, mostly. It's as good as it gets. There's no 24t clutch gear and no room for that, so it now clicks at the worm-to-8t pair deep inside when the ends are reached, with no room to fix that. But at least they extend and retract OK now. The pneumatic tubes add a lot of friction, but nothing can be done to that I think. Also, unfortunately the outriggers extend/retract rather fast, and there's no room anywhere to slow it down. From the motor, it's 16-16-16, then through the steering joint, then 12-20, then from the driving ring it's 16-16, then worm-8, then 20-12-12. That last one can only be changed to 12-20-12 if I loose the 3x3 gear bracket but then there's no room to reinforce it properly I think, and that would not improve things. Right now, if it clicks, at least I know that both outriggers stay aligned with each other. The better news is that the outriggers actually work. The pneumatics are strong enough to provide a really good support, and the long cylinders mean it has enough ground clearance while retracted. That would have been much worse with the old cylinders. So happy with the new pneumatics, they work really smooth :) (Digitizing it will be a challenge though.) So, again, it's not finished yet. The attentive reader may have noticed that there are only photos from the left, and that the rear right wheels are the Porsche tyres :P I only have 4 of those wheels, so will have to order 2, or switch wheels when I take pictures :P To do: solve clicking problem in gearbox, and add lights (no PF, just transparent parts). Am I forgetting anything?
  3. My step order is roughtly like this: Find subject matter (photos on the internet) Pick functions I would like Decide on scale (pick some wheels) Draw a grid over a reference photo to determine size In MLCAD, place wheels, steering and drivetrain Think about where to put large elements (engine, battery box, motor, gearbox) Design most critical elements digitally (gearbox, suspended axles) Build those in real Digitally lay out a chassis around built elements Build chassis in real Then, I just go from there; switching between digital building and real building, because this way you build everything twice, and the second time you always get some new ideas to improve the first draft.
  4. I had a few days of absence, because I was doing other things (making music). But I have a big update, consisting of three parts: Seats Crane Outriggers Let's start with the first. I went with yellow seats instead of blue, because I didn't want to add yet another color, and yellow already exists in the springs. Also, I used a part I don't have in blue (brick 1 x 2 with studs on 2 sides). Another thing you might notice is that I use a mix of studded and studless. I am trying to do that more now, because I think it is sort of a waste to have all those system parts and not use them. They can improve a model sometimes. I also changed the windscreen (the underside is raised 2 studs) so the proportions are better. That gave me room on the interior to add a steering wheel. Second update is more substantial: the crane. As I said, i copied 8258, but made a lot of changes. Obviously, the color - I used teal where possible, and black to fill it up. I think this give a pretty cool combination. Actually the only piece I would have liked to have in teal is the triangle beam. I also made the base one stud lower. As you see, I also changed the paneling. I again used a few system bricks to fill up the things and to add the paneling to the second boom section (controlled by the bottom LA). But more importantly, I changed the connection between the second and third boom segment (controlled by the second LA). In 8258, it is optimized for easy attachment, but as I was changing the third and fourth boom segment anyway to be less bulky, I also changed this connection. I discovered that using a 5x9 bent beam sideways works very well here, and fortunately these exist in teal. The last segment and the winch are operated by the tan gears and work on friction, similar to 8258. OK, the last addition: the outriggers. What I think will come a bit as a surpise: they are pneumatic. (Also, as you can see, I also added the fuel tank-like things at the sides. They do nothing, except cover that ugly diagonal beam.) I doubted long enough, but finally ordered pneumatics on Bricklink. I went for the complete set, with 2 of each cylinder (only V2, so I don't have the short 2x2 ones) and one of each pump, and the necessary tubing and switches. I got the idea for pneumatic outriggers a while ago and I liked it for various reasons. After reading about all the enthousiasm for the updated pneumatic in reviews and on the forums, I wanted to try it out, and this seemed like a good opportunity. A linkage or gear based outrigger foot would have a knob on the outrigger itself, which I'm not a fan of (I know I did the same in the crane though. That won't change.) Doing pneumatics allow me to operate the outriggers from the vehicle itself (preferably from the front end), without needing elobarate geartrains thorugh the steering joint and sliding stuff to allow for the horizontal extension I did linkage-based outriggers often enough, I liked the challenge of changing up this time I was thinking of joining the small pump to the motor. In the end, I went for the manual pump, because an electric pump would cost too much space and make the front too bulky. The main disadvantage of pneumatics is that it's much harder to do instructions. But I went for it anyway. Laying out the tubes nicely was a challenge, but I think I got it down pretty nicely. Both the extension of the outriggers themselves, and the steering were problematic and required pretty long tubes with the ability to be "rolled up" in a way. Unfortunately, the steering angle has been reduced slightly. And, of course, being a purist, I only used official pre-cut lengths of tubing, occurring in either 42043, or 42053. By the way, I put the pump sideways for a specific reason: the vehicle's suspension. The sideways pump invites the operator to use a finger and a thumb to pump, "holding" the pump. A vertical pump would invite pumping with one finger, pressing it down without "holding" it, which would be cumbersome because you would be pressing the suspension all the time. There is a slight problem though, which is the motor has trouble extending the outriggers now. The geartrain is clicking. I know the source, but haven't solved it. That will be the next challenge, and actually, one of the last. Things are nearing completion :)
  5. I only come across this topic now, haven't seen your earlier updates, but it'\s looking pretty cool I must say. When I saw only the gearbox I was thinking, it looks very large for what it does, but that's before I noticed there's a pneumatic pump in the middle. Not sure why it's in the middle though, it looks like you had some trouble working around it. I feel the gearbox itself could be smaller, but your current layout does give you the switches nicely at the sides. One thing I noticed though is you used the driving ring extenders with the new gears. Officially this is not "in system" because extender + red gear is slightly longer than 2 studs (not sure it gives friction?) You can solve this by using the dark-gray 16t gears. Anyhow. Seeing everything built in in the trailer, it comes together great. A lot seems going on in a small space, which I like. I like the front "stands". The rotation mechanism for the turntable seems to take up a lot of room though. Is there anything functional under it? Do the axles do anything? Did you use double tyres? Curious to the underside of the whole thing Also, as I understand it, you want to be doing 4 pneumatic functions. Do you have any idea yet where the switches will be, and where you will route the hoses?
  6. I think, @Horace T, that this is a model that lends itself particularly well to a modular approach. There're clearly separate sections joined together. Building for example a supercar modularly would be much harder, because those are usually much more intricate due to limited space. Especially with more unconventional functions like steering modes or ride height adjustment. Also, thanks of course and also to @nico71 and @captainmib By the way, next update will be the crane. No pictures yet, but I copied the geometry (and gearing) of the 8258 crane, but everything else is changed - a few connections (the joint between the 2nd and 3rd segment is strengthened), the paneling, of course the color, and the third/fourth boom section.
  7. Use the old dark-gray 16t gears. They fit with the driving ring extenders, regardless of which driving ring you use. Edit:
  8. Thanks :) I think what helps is the black I use as a "filler" color. I think if you add black as a sort of transitoinal color, almost any two colors can be combined. (Well, except maybe medium blue and dark azure). Cool to see other people working on similiar projects! I think you should also post a WIP if you're ready for it, it really enhances the fun :) Also, I didn't raelly think of it but I think you're correct about the engine. I guess the real engine is behind the cabin, but I want to put the battery box there. And in fact, I have done so, in my next update :) I also worked a bit on the back half, adding a few steps and colored bits here and there: I know the real model doesn't have a ladder beteween the crane unit and the rear wheels, but I wanted to add it there anyway to add some color there. Above them will be some kind of storage boxes I think, or something else made of studded parts. More importantly though, but less excitingly, I made this: The bed is nothing more than a large panel, but what helps is that I can add a lot of teal with just 18 parts. Also, interestingly, the rear spring holders protrude slightly above the top of the chassis because they are angled, but by placing the 5x11 panels exactly in the right position I can make the spring holder units fall into the cavity at the underside of the panel. (That's why there are so many 11L beams between the panels, instead of one more panel. They had to be aligned like this or it wouldn't fit.) And, of course, the moment @BrickbyBrickTechnic wanted to see:
  9. [WIP] Supercar in 1:8 scale

    I never oppose the interest people have in my model, of course, but doing instructions will be quite some work with all the angles. It's 3000 parts, which is a lot bigger than all my previous instructions, which were about 2000 parts or less. So it remains to be seen if LPub3D doesn't crash on this one... But I agree it would be cool :) I see if I can make time some day. No promises though!
  10. I'll be following this thread closely, because I am also thinking of getting (back) into Pneumatics a bit. A few years ago I sold all mine, I didn't use it. But with the V2 and the new long cylinders (and the anticipated valves), their use may have extended a bit. I see lots of people are already advising to go for 42053, but I am still torn. There's also 42043, which I know is considered one of the best sets of the last 5 years, and seems very AFOL-minded model, but I'm not willing to spend €180 on 2700 parts of which I already own 2600, even if by itself the set is a great deal. Similar argument for 42053 - besides the pneumatics it has zero interesting pieces for me, and the theme (of A and B model) doesn't interest me at all I'm afraid, even though it's really not expensive for what you get. Also, 42053 is missing the long thin cylinder that 42043 had and I want that as well. But 42043 has no manual pump, which I want too. But I do have an idea that could use pneumatic, so I rather not wait for H2. Hmm. There's also the option of placing an order on Bricklink for the relevant parts. What do you think between those four options? Get 42043 Get 42053 Wait for 42080 Order on Bricklink Sorry if this sounds like hijacking the thread, so please also keep considering the original question by @Great Ball Pit :)
  11. Using the 5x7 frame directly, like @Didumos69 did above, seems the best way to me. Locking the axles can be done further down the road. Really, t feels that the 5x7 frame and the differential are specifically designed to use together :) The image above is similar to what I use in my Delta carrier right now, except my axles are 2 studs wider (one stud on each side). I also use dog bones for the wheel axles, but vertically and one stud further outward, and instead of 3L axles in the differential, I use 4L axles. Because the second "unit" of the 4L axle is in the frame, I used tan axles because they might fit just that slight bit tighter. Also, using 4L instead of 3L gives you a second stud directly outside the frame that you can use to support the 4L axle, before the axle joiner comes. That would also be the place to add a long beam as part of the chassis.Alternatively, you can use the 5x11 frame, of course, instead of 5x7. Another tiny mention I would like to add is, that if you want even higher reliability, I would put the 20T gear on an axle with stop, with the stop on the inside. Which means you have to insert that axle with gear from the inside, which means it can't be longer than 5L unless you don't mind bending the axle when installing it, and you have to insert that axle before you add the diff. Then you're absolutely sure the axle can't slip out. To make sure the axle won't slip in as well, add two half-bushes somewhere on that axle (therefore, I think 5L is the best length). Edit: also, there are two mould variants of this particular diff. Both variants have a recessed sleeve at the 28T gear side for the tan 12T gear to slide in, but in the older variant, this recess is deeper, to account for a "counterbore" for the hole in the 28T gear side to allow pins to be inserted. This deeper slit makes three of the 28 teeth a bit shorter (and also the support ring for the axle 0.1L shorter), which could maybe increase the chance of slipping there (although I never experienced that myself). So if you want to put large forces on the differential, maybe check whether you have the newer mould variant.
  12. I have been silent for the past week, but I haven't sit still and I worked on two important parts: The front end of the chassis (engine, L motor) The front part of the body, and the cabin A lot has happened and I took some photos during the progress. Here's the almost-complete version of the front section. I think it's pretty sturdy right now. The place where the thin 5x7 ellipse beams go (I'm glad I got them in dark gray from set 8435), originally, 5x7 frames were planned there, but then the L motor couldn't fit in between. A nice bonus is that the ellipse beams are dark-gray, unlike frames :) I'm not 100% happy with the diagonal 11L beam, but it is needed to provide some extra rigidity (althought still has more flex then I would like). Also, unfortunately, the diagonal links with 5.5 axles under the engine don't form a nice Pythagorean triangle, but this was the best I could find. It fits, but only because the light-gray 2x3 cross blocks can sit on any position on the axle. Next step is starting the body, of which you see a start here: I think red is a nice hard color for this type of vehicle. Also you see the L motor placed. It's actually only supported by the vertical brown 5L axles with stop that also hold the body. Actulaly, those two axles, and the 4 red pins below the 5x7 frames that you can only see the top end of, are the only places where the body is attached to the chassis, so again this is a separate module. The tan 1.5 L pins are for the cabin. I also used red 8L axles for the ladder, and actually, this is one of the first times I use red axles for body, instead of yellow. (I notice odd axles work better in studless builds.) In a further stage, the build is like this. I went for studded beams for the rack that goes over the cabin, because it looks stronger and this rack is meant as a support for possible loads, so I think it should look very sturdy. Personlaly I'm quite happy with the shape of the front, however, I still have no lights. So some parts will have to be replaced by transparent pieces. (I won't do PF lights, I don't have those and personally I don't care for electric lights). Also, as you see I used some studded pieces, which means I will also probably use some studded pieces in other places in the body to remain consistent in style. Here's the cabin, by the way (without the seats, these will probably be blue like in official sets.) I understand you might think the colors clash like hell, but I find they form a cool combination nonetheless: As you see, the top rack has also been added. The whole body (red + teal) is an easily separable module, and if you remove the rack, which takes some work, you can pretty easily take off the teal cabin as well. (The cabin and rack are connected at the roof for stability). One thing I like personally is that the teal cabin and the top of the rack are 1/2 stud vertically offset, in a barely noticable way :) Ok, that was it for now. Next up: Joining the two halves Adding interior for the cabin Adding battery box Stuff to do for later: Add wheels and test suspension Build the crane for 8258 and fit it on Add feet for outriggers Add the bed Add the other body details
  13. The complaints about 42070 aren't about the price. They are about the price-to-value ratio compared to other sets. I expect that most people would be fine with a 250-euro Technic set, as long as it is demonstrably better/larger than a 150-euro Technic set. What's by the way also interesting, is how the part count rise seems to be something of the last 8 years or so. At least, for me, sets 8258 and 8421 (edit: and 8285) were when I started noticing that sets were growing and by the time 8110 came out, there was a clear upward trend. Before that, it seemed fairly constant. Edit: if looking through the history, it seems to be rising as a consequence of studless as well. So I think it has always gone upward, but I only noticed it when the 1400-part record suddenly got broken.
  14. 42082 Rough Terrain Crane

    That said, it's usually the PF sets with a single motor that house those huge complex gearboxes to let one motor power 2, 4 or even more functions. In manual sets, the controls are all over the model; in a PF set, all gear trains must somehow come together into one place, which makes the model usually much more technically interesting. Of course, this argument does not hold for PF sets with many motors such as 42030, but I expect this new crane 42082 to have such a wonderful gearbox again. While this is speculation. there's bound to be something that guides the motor's power to four selectable functions.
  15. Among those additional restrictions that AFOL models don't face, is ease of construction by the target audience. Most models we make are cool, but much harder to build than official sets. (I know this from making instructions of my own models, which results in much harder instructions than that of official sets, even when I would add more steps than I normally do.) Another restriction is that models absolutely must work out-of-the-box. AFOLs can cut corners where afunction is too slow, only works with full batteries, has a bit of slack in the system, isn't aligned fully, etc. Official models can't - they have to work when built by an 8-year-old. And, from my personal oint of view, Technic sets are getting more complex then ever before (partly caused by all the new small parts of the last few years). The recent red and yellow axles prove this point, IMO. Apparently the complexication had to be balanced with better cueing in other places to prevent mass misbuilds among children.