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Found 62 results

  1. Hey guys, i´m building a little shrine thingy on a step hill to put in a minifig statue, and i want to cap it off with a nice pagoda styled roof. The problem is,i never build one and i´m kinda struggling with making it pretty. Pagoda Roof This is my take on the problem,but i hate how there are still large gaps between the 4 roof sides even with trying to fill them with 1x4 plates. Any of you master builders have a good idea to show? The pagoda roof needs to sit on a 6x6 plate but can overlapto the sides.
  2. You may have encountered it: you built a nice model in LDD, but it looks surreal because it lacks decorations on e.g. the minifigs. This tutorial is here to help you with that. In this little tutorial, I will try to explain how you can enhance the POV-Ray renders of your LDD models with custom decorations. You can design entirely new figures for example, or you can apply the decorations that aren’t available in LDD. My example in this tutorial will be a stormtrooper minifig. This figure lacks all decoration in LDD, and is commonly used in digital Star Wars builds. It gives me the opportunity to explain how to decorate surfaces that aren’t directly accessible in LDD, how to fit custom decals and explain the general principles. This method doesn’t involve any hacking and doesn’t require any sick programming skills (although the custom decorations might need your artistic talents…). And the best of all: all programs I use here are entirely free! I’ll be using Lego Digital Designer, LDD2POV-Ray, POV-Ray and Inkscape. So let’s get started! Decorate the target pieces in LDD LDD2POV-Ray, the program that will eventually place your custom decorations, can only replace already applied decorations. So firstly, you need to give the pieces you want to decorate a replacement decoration in LDD. Make sure to use different decorations for each surface, so that you later can keep track of which filler to replace with which substitute. Also, taking a screenshot for reference is not a bad idea to support your memory. But wait a minute… Some parts don’t allow for any decorations at all in LDD! Minifig torso’s are not a problem at all, but things like helmets are a whole different story. But luckily, there is an easy way to apply decorations that will work in most cases (no guarantees though!). You have to export your .lxf file to the LXFML format (File -> Export Model). This .lxfml file is actually a textual representation of your model. Among others, it contains a list with the placed parts, including their color(s) and decoration(s). To find your part, use the search function (Ctrl + F / Cmd + F) and type in: in which you replace 30408 (the designID of the storm trooper helmet in this example) with the designID of the part you desperately want to decorate. You can find this ID by clicking on the part in LDD and looking at the bottom left corner. If multiple of these parts are available, you can give the specific part a different color and check for the one that says materials=”26” in which you replace 26 with the number of the color you used (you can find this number by hovering over the color in the color menu in LDD). The key part is then to change the part that says decorations=”0,0,0” in which the amount of zeros dictates the amount of surfaces that you can decorate. If the line isn’t present at all, you’re out of luck and won’t be able to decorate your part. Otherwise, replace the zeros with valid decoration ID’s. It’s best to take decorations that are square and detailed (I will explain why later), so I suggest using the decorations of the 2x2 flat tiles. You can find these ID’s by placing some of these decorated tiles in your model, and check in the LXFML file what number is filled in in the decorations line of those parts. To make it easier for you, here are some handy decoration ID’s you can use: 73023, 63708, 99825, 55350, 63404, 601245 Then, save your file, and open it with LDD. You’ll see your parts are looking very ugly with those random decorations, but you’ll be happy to have decorations. You can copy these parts to a ‘normal’ .lxf file, and get rid of the parts you used to find the decoration numbers. Now we can move on to step 2! 2. Open your model with LDD2POV-Ray LDD2POV-Ray is a program that converts your LDD model into a file that can be rendered with POV-Ray, a ray tracer that simulates the behaviour of real light to simulate a realistic effect. You can set lighting etc, but more importantly, you can set your own decorations. To do this, go to the “Decorations” tab, and check the box “Use custom decorations”. A list will appear at the bottom, showing all the decorations you used. Clicking on them will reveal a thumbnail. Now you’ll be happy that you used different decorations to know which is which. You’ll notice that the decorations (unless they are square) are a bit stretched out. That’s because the program only accepts square decorations. So to load your own decorations, you’ll have to make sure they are square. Otherwise, they won’t cover the whole area you intended. If you already have your decorations (you found them on one of the indexes of the customisation forum here, for example), you can skip to step 4. Otherwise, I’ll give a brief account on how to make your own decorations in step 3. 3. Create your own decorations Personally, I make my decorations with Inkscape. It’s an easy to use vector based program. That means you can easily create very clean, smooth and crisp shapes. I’ll leave it to others to educate you in this nice software, but I’ll show you some general strategies to make accurate decorations. When working on complex curved shapes, like the storm trooper helmet, you won’t know for certain how your image will be mapped to the surface. That’s when the screenshot you took comes in handily. Because you have used decorations with a lot of detail (if you’ve been following properly!), you can easily see how the image is deformed and placed on the surface. You can identify the regions where you want your details to come, look to what part of the placed decoration it corresponds, see what it looks like in its flat state (you can see this in the thumbnail in LDD2POV-Ray), and place your detail in the according place. So in the example of the storm trooper helmet, you can see that the mouth should somewhere at the center of the graph. LDD2POV-Ray shows that that graph is a bit above the, so now you know you have to place the mouth around the center of your decal. When you’ve finished your decoration, you have to make sure your decoration is square. This will most certainly occur when you’re designing decorations for minifig torsos. If you leave it in its actual proportions and plug it in LDD2POV-Ray, you’ll see that the image doesn’t fill the whole area, compared to the stretched out decoration you have to replace. So you resize your decoration. In Inkscape, simply go to the top, where you can enter dimensions. Then you go to File -> Export Bitmap and a dialogue box will pop up. Make sure to select ‘from selection’, and that the amount of pixels of your image is high enough. Otherwise it will look pixelated in the render. Finally, chose .png as file format, and remove the background color of your decoration. Because it might look like the right color in Inkscape, but in your render it will look like the decal has a different color than the body, which isn’t what you wanted. So now you have your parts temporarily decorated, and you got your custom decorations ready. So time to replace them and render them. 4. Render your decorated model Firstly, you have to load your new decorations in LDD2POV-Ray. There are multiple ways to do this, but the easiest method is to select the decoration you want to replace and then click on the empty canvas. A window will pop up to allow you to select your decoration. Just select it. Repeat for the other decorations, making sure you replace the right decoration with the right replacement (that screenshot will come in handy now, especially since you can’t have both LDD and LDD2POV-Ray open at the same time at this moment!). Then you can fiddle around with different settings like lighting etc. For test renders I suggest to place in the first tab the slider on the lowest positions: ‘LDD geometry’. This will result in slightly less good, but much faster renders, allowing you to quickly get feedback about your decorations, so that you can adjust placement and proportions. For flat parts this won’t be necessary, but it can help for curved parts. That’s why I included the TIE pilot in the render. You can see the ensignas are slightly deformed. That’s not my intention, but I already predeformed the circles in the decal, so that it looks more or less round on the surface. You’ll have to experiment a lot with these ones. Anyway, when you're satisfied and feel the need for a more glamorous render, you can turn 'render with visible bevels' on in the slider bar, and wait for some time. You'll get something like this. Hopefully now you know all about rendering your custom minifigs, making your models more realistic. I hope to see some around! Anyway: happy rendering of your minifigs! If anyone is interested in downloading the decorations I designed for the stormtrooper (for now without back printing) and the TIE pilot (torso printing already present in LDD), have a look at this page. Hope you've found this useful.
  3. I've recently come out of my Lego "dark age" and started rebuilding some of my old sets. I was never one to keep sets together very long, so naturally i've lost a lot of stickers. One of my other hobbies is classic bicycles, which often share the dilema of missing or damaged art. This method for producing decals was taught to me by a clever artist on a popular bicycle forum, so he really deserves any and all credit. This method is simple and inexpensive and much of the materials are common. I assume the trickiest part for most people will be producing the art. I happen to have Adobe Illustrator at home, so I am able to create my own vector art files. I believe other cheap, maybe even free software exists. Sometimes high quality art can also be found as images on the web. On to the step-by-step: 1) Produce the art. Use a laser printer and any cheap printer paper. Laser printing is key... if you don't have one, you could try any of the copy shops around. As mentioned, I used Adobe Illustrator. I am replacing the decals for 6594 Gas Transit. DSC04389 by mkeller234, on Flickr 2) Cover the art with packaging tape. DSC04390 by mkeller234, on Flickr 3) Burnish the tape onto the image. I use scissor handles and rub over the tape surface. You will be able to see which areas have bonded well. It doesn't take much effort. DSC04391 by mkeller234, on Flickr 4) Cut the decals out. The closer, the better. I usually follow the shape of the art, but it doesn't really matter. DSC04392 by mkeller234, on Flickr 5) Submerge in water DSC04393 by mkeller234, on Flickr 6) Once the paper is saturated, it can be rubbed away with light pressure from your thumb. Remove as much paper as possible. DSC04394 by mkeller234, on Flickr As you can see, the decals are clear. This is both a blessing and a curse. I happen to be positioning these over white bricks, so the colors will look nice. For use with dark bricks, you will need to either paint the back with white paint, or find a printer that can print white (ALPS). DSC04395 by mkeller234, on Flickr 7) Place the decals on your model. These decals are very forgiving and can be slid around easily. They stick on their own without glue. Make sure you allow them to dry completely before really handling them. 8) Admire your work! DSC04399 by mkeller234, on Flickr DSC04398 by mkeller234, on Flickr Ahhh... the teeth marks of my youth. DSC04400 by mkeller234, on Flickr Lego trucks sure have changed since I was young. I love the detail in these new models! DSC04401 by mkeller234, on Flickr
  4. bricksboy

    MOC LEGO NYC News Stand Tutorial

    The model has been uploaded to LEGO ideas. I will appreciate your support my project if you like my model. Thanks :D https://ideas.lego.com/projects/28eae663-6faa-4111-b9c3-8d8965ee3ead The news stand is base on New York City style :) My other MOC models: [MOC] New York City Police (NYPD) Car [MOC] Lego Mini Cooper [MOC] Japan Tokyo Taxi vol.1 東京無線タクシー [MOC] Ice Cream Truck [MOC] LEGO California Highway Patrol [MOC] LEGO Police Car [MOC] Police Motorcycle [MOC] New York City Taxi / Cab [MOC] LEGO NYC News Stand [MOC] New York City Transit Bus [MOC] Newspaper Rack [MOC] Coke/Beverage Cooler Initial D AE86 Racer AC Transit Bus AC Transit Bus Short Version Ice Cream Van
  5. ZetoVince

    [MOC] Ford GT

    And a short video to showcase some of the most interesting parts of the construction Racing version
  6. Hello there, Today I'd like to share my custom AT-RT design from Battlefront II and the Clone Wars. As with all Lego creations, there always has to be a compromise between scale, accuracy and structural integrity. With this one, I focused mainly on scale and accuracy since I wanted to use it in MOCs and for display. This means that it cannot, in any way withstand a child's play, but still holds together rather well for us older children and can easily be posed. As part of my accuracy factor, it was important for me that the legs of the pilot were positioned as if a human was sat on the walker instead of the usual minifigure sitting position that other lego walkers use. While keeping all of the important details and geometry, I also tried to reduced its size to match as closely as possible the minifigure scale and I think I achieved that rather well. It is made up of a total of 77 pieces and an additional 1x2 plate can be added for aesthetics when the pilot is on. I hope you like it and if so that you'll build your own since I have also created building instructions for everyone to use in their own MOCs (credit is always appreciated :D) I'm always open to comments and constructive criticism so let me know what you think of it and feel free to ask if you have any question concerning the building instructions. Front 'Head' Body and foward antipersonnel cannon Legs and feet Body assembly, foot rests and armoured joints Rear, antennas and pistol holder Mounting the pilot and additional tip
  7. Hello. I hope this is the right thread for this topic. I made a simple tutorial on how to build a LEGO TV. It's very simple but I feel like it's a good portrayal. It's supposed to be one of those old TVs from before flat screens that everyone had in the 90's and early 2000's. Tell me what you think.
  8. Pandora

    Flickr Tutorial

    Flickr seems to change so often that it's hard to keep up with all of its functions. There have been a number of questions about deeplinking from Flickr recently, so I hope people find this short tutorial helpful. I have included TWO ways of sharing pictures from Flickr in this tutorial; using the "Share" button and through the "Download" button. Embedding pictures using the "Share button. Embedding pictures using the "Download" button. Feel free to post questions about Flickr here and anyone can answer them. For any other questions, ie anything not relating to flickr, please check the FAQ tab in the upper right of the forum, or post in the HELP! ! ! topic here in Forum Information and Help.
  9. First time posting one of my creations, apologies if this is not the right forum. Credit where it's due: Furniture was heavily inspired by brickbuilt.org furniture tutorials and google. The sliding mechanism was adapted from someone's assault gunship MOC I had saved. It's been reworked extensively but without the original builder I never would have gotten this done. https://imgur.com/a/Oz6st First we need to build a couple piece of furniture, 2x6x7 and 2x8x6. The only real important dimension here is the 4x8 plate the right piece is covering. The nitty gritty of the technique. The bookcase runs on a pair of axles feeding through a pair of technic bricks in the back wall. They will protrude into the next room when the bookcase is pushed back. By pushing them the bookcase can be returned to it's starting place. Fairly self explanatory, bit of SNOT work to attach the 6x8 plate to the back of the wardrobe. The 6x8 plate attaches to the two brackets in the channels. These brackets are half the magic trick. 1x4 tile, 1x4 plate, bracket and 1x1 plates. This is the difficult bit. Using 1x4 L-shaped tiles and lots of jumper plates we build a pair of channels. The 1x2 plate with clip hinge helps to keep the door on the rails, without it gets caught and refuses to slide. The 1x5 brick acts as my slide stop. A different angle. Everything is built onto a 2x8 plate , jumpers give a half stud offset and provide half the channel. More jumpers return us to standard studs to set up the second channel, and yet more jumpers to repeat the previous channel. Followed by more jumpers to bring us back to standard studs so we can attach to the wall. Until it's connected to the wall the whole assembly is pretty fragile. My apologies about the picture quality. I'm not much of a photographer to begin with and my cellphone camera wasn't helping much.
  10. mandaci-customs

    [MOC] Construction mini Truck Tutorial

    Hi Everybody, I want to show you my LEGO MOC Construction mini Truck. This Tutorial shows, how you can build the Truck with LEGO:
  11. Hi Everybody, I want to show you my Instruction Tutorial, which shows, how you can build the Pipe Wrench from PC Game Half - Life Oppsosing Force:
  12. Hi Everybody, I want to show you my Tutorial, which shows, how you can build Transformers G1 Optimus Prime in ROBOT MODE:
  13. Hi Everybody, I want to show you my Instruction Tutorial, which shows, how you can build the Red Fury Racer, known from Cartoon Saber Rider Star Sheriffs:
  14. Hi Everybody, I want to show you my Search - Rescue Helikopter. This Instruction Tutorial shows, how you can build the Truck with LEGO:
  15. Hi Everybody, I want to show you my Army Rocket Launcher Truck Transporter. This Instruction Tutorial shows, how you can build the Truck with LEGO. I used Tan & White Bricks for the Truck, to show the winter - snow digital camoflage
  16. Hi Everybody, I want to show you my Army Rocket Launcher Truck Transporter. This Instruction Tutorial shows, how you can build the Truck with LEGO. I used Tan & White Bricks for the Truck, to show the winter - snow digital camoflage
  17. Hi Everybody, I want to show you my Army Tank Transporter Truck. This Instruction Tutorial shows, how you can build the Truck with LEGO.
  18. @LEGO presented their variation of Ken Block's Hoonicorn machine for the Gymkhama video. So I decide to have a reverse engineering challenge of the brick model. Could not find any rear photos so went for a freestyle build in the rear part. Full how to build tutorial in the video! Thanks for watching!
  19. Peteris_Sprogis

    [MOC] 60117 alternate mocs

    Hi, I've made several alternates using just the pieces from Lego city 60117 set. 1.Dump truck. Euro style dump truck with balanced color scheme. 2. Convertible. Some neat SNOT windscreen positioning and other stylish details. 3. SUV and trailer. Sleek looking SUV with a functional trailer. 4. Explorer VAN. Same like in the original design a VAN but this time it has higher clearance is more suitable for off road exploration 5. Cabrio. Dialing in some wild snot segments in the construction so that the lady has herself a cool and fast cabrio car. Thanks for watching!
  20. This is a reference for some techniques that can be used to create LEGO spheres. Hope this helps when deciding which option to use. And a look at the inside of the larger and more complicated spheres.
  21. Slegengr

    Tutorial: Pine Tree

    Pine Tree Technique Have you ever wanted to make LEGO pine trees that are a little more realistic than the molded ones that TLG produces? Here is a tutorial for just such a technique. You may notice that this technique is not for the faint of heart or weak of pieces, though! The techniques are fairly basic, but this is one of the SHIP-est tree techniques I have seen. Try it at your wallet’s risk! First, a Bill of Materials needed for one tree: Now for the tutorial: First comes the trunk. This is quite basic. The start of the needles is next. Notice the direction of the bend on the droid arms. Alternation is critical to the proper appearance. Now fill out the foliage a bit more. Add an internal trunk support. Next is the trickiest part of this technique: the first ring of thick needles. Pay attention to the direction of bend on droid arms. This helps to fill out the needles with fewer gaps. Note that the droid arms are sometimes spread a bit on the bars. Not each connection can be snugged completely against the earlier connections. For ease of tutorial and some final color variation, I alternated droid arm colors every layer. …finally add the ring around the trunk support. It should rest neatly on the black octagonal bar plate used earlier. Now repeat the process for the next needle ring, only this ring is smaller. …and add the second needle ring on top of the first needle ring. Wiggle and rotate the second ring a bit during assembly. It should interconnect and seat slightly into the first ring to lock the position and keep the needles densely layered. Another trunk support is needed to hold the second needle ring in place and provide support for the rest of the tree. One more needle ring is needed to finish out the tree at this size. This needle ring is much smaller to allow for the conical shape on the final tree. …and add the third needle ring on top of the second. Of course, pine cones are a nice addition. Some can be added along with additional needle sections to make the needles denser. If more pine cones are desired, simply make more pine cones from the three flower plates and add them to the tips of any spiked vine piece. The additional needle sections do allow for the pine cones to be settled into the needles to give a more realistic appearance than having pine cones on the ends of the earlier branches. To attach the additional needle sections, just nestle them over earlier needle sections and allow the other branches to cover over and lock in the droid arm. This might take a little practice and determination to get the right appearance. Before finishing the top, more needle sections should be added to make the needles denser and provide a better mesh with the top section. Note the different direction of bend on the droid arms. This allows some sections to be placed nearer the trunk to give varying degrees of thickness and conical shaping to the tree. After assembling the needle sections, hang them around the third needle ring and allow the spiked vines to fall into the spiked vines from the third needle ring. Play around with the rotation of the vines in the droid arm clips to get the best fit and tree shape. Finally, we are nearing the top! A critical note for this top section is to use a black octagonal bar plate of the earlier version with thinner tabs attaching the bar to the plate. TLG later thickened the tabs to reinforce the piece. The increased tab thickness decreases the bar width by enough to not allow for proper connection and spacing of two droid arms on each bar section. While building the top section, pay attention to the direction the droid arms are attached to the black octagonal bar plate. Also note that the vines are not parallel along the length of the droid arm. By rotating the vines slightly, a better mesh is achieved between the upper and lower layers of this top section. Now, slide the top section on the trunk support until it is against the stop-ring on the top 6-long bar. Add the round brick and cone to top the trunk, insert 4 spiked vines to finish the top needles, and press in the upper droid arms on the top section to close them around the top needles. …and we are finally finished! Note that different colors can be used for the droid arms to allow for slight variations on the internal portions of the tree. These pieces show through at different spots, so the colors do have an effect on the finished tree. Varying the number of needle rings, number of bars in a needle ring, and height of the support trunk allow for many different variations on the tree height and shape. Some evergreens have denser needles while some have more visible branches and more separation between branches. Keep this in mind when considering how many needles to add. Let me know what you think of this design with comments and constructive criticisms! I am always looking for improvements to the design, so I look forward to seeing how you can use and expand upon this technique! Thanks for looking, Slegengr
  22. Peteris_Sprogis

    [MOC] 4x4 Adventure SUV

    city / speed champions style 4x4 Adventure SUV car moc. 6 wide minifigure scale, cabin seats one fig and the rear trunk can be lifted up. Free building tutorial available in the video. Thanks for watching!
  23. BuildingWithDaDaandRiley

    LEGO Tutorial - How to Make a Globe Stand

    Link removed by WhiteFang
  24. I've wanted to write this since last summer, when I picked out a model as a "demonstrator". I don't expect that all the material will fit in one post. This post covers part of my process for building scale models. I previously presented some of this material in a talk at Bricks By the Bay 2016, titled "How Do I Train?". Introduction I built Lego trains prior to heading off to college, but didn't take my bricks with me when I started school. I started building again when I returned. Seeing the high-quality work of the early train builders inspired me. In particular, Ben's works served as inspiration both before I left for college and after I returned. Like many builders, I base my models on real trains. I got started with my current building process when I wondered why my models didn't really look like the things they were baed on. Clearly, building a model while looking at references helps. But continually checking against known dimensions of the real thing will yield even better results. Scale Models The models I build now are scale models of real trains. A scale model is "a proportional replica of a physical object" (Wikipedia) The original object the model is based on is called the "prototype". The model reproduces the features of the prototype at a smaller size and also maintains the correct positioning of those features relative to each other. The amount of reduction is called the scale of the model. For example, a 1/6 scale model of a 6-foot tall person would be 1 foot tall. Here are two images from a pamphlet that illustrate the idea of "scale". This image shows the same plane modeled at different scales: The planes have the same proportions as each other and the original plane, even though they are all different sizes. This second photo shows models of different planes built at the same scale. As the planes are all scaled down from their prototypes by the same amount, the models accurately depict the difference in sizes between the real aircraft. Widths Are a Distraction Many train builders describe their models as 6-wide, 8-wide, etc, corresponding roughly to the width of the primary portion of the model. These are not scales. They are *sizes*. Widths are NOT scales! The width of a model is useful for explaining roughly how big it is, but the same width may reflect different scales depending on the size of the prototype. A Big Boy built at the same width as Stephenson's Rocket would be built at a smaller scale, because it is wider to begin with and has to fit in the same amount of space. Conversely, building at a fixed scale can result in models of different widths, reflecting the difference in sizes of the prototypes. Picking a Scale The first instinct when deciding to build at a fixed scale is to try to build at "minifig" scale. That approach is doomed to failure, or at least inconsistency. Minifigs have very different proportions than humans: A minifig is about twice as wide as a human the same height would be. Because of this fact, a minifig will seem either short or wide relative to a model of a real vehicle designed for real humans. The scale I choose to build at is 15 inches per stud (381mm / stud). This works out to about 1:48 scale. At this scale a minifig represents someone about 6 feet (183cm) tall. American and most continental European rolling stock is about 8 studs wide; British rolling stock clocks in at 7 or 8, depending on the size of the prototype. Constraints Generally, I avoid modifying parts or using third-party parts in my models. I make an exception for wheels from Big Ben Bricks. Ben offers a variety of wheel sizes which are helpful when building steam locomotives. His small wheels are slightly thinner than the official Lego ones and have no webbing between the spokes. On the other hand, the official Lego wheels feature grooves traction bands, which is important for making powered locomotives (more on this later). I also try to make sure that my models are able to run smoothly on standard Lego track. This means all arrangements of R40 curves and switches, or at least the ones I am likely to encounter at shows. Ideally the models can also handle some unevenness in the track. Planning Process Generally the first thing I do is pick a prototype to base my model on. Once I've done so, I locate references using search engines, Wikipedia, and more dedicated sites like RailPictures.net. If I find an interesting image I'll look at the site it comes from, which often turns up relevant information. Searching in other languages can yield additional information on foreign prototypes. I try to get photos of the prototype from a variety of angles, or at least pictures of other models of the prototype. Both of these can be tricky if the prototype is rare, exotic, or unique. The most important thing is to find an engineering drawing or blueprint. These images show the prototype from a few different angles, with critical dimensions labeled. They are helpful for constructing accurate models. Scaling The next thing I do is scale the technical drawing. To do so, I choose a labeled length, convert it to inches, then scale by the chosen scale. For example: The scaling equation yields the size of the chosen length in studs. I then overlay the drawing on Lego graph paper. The paper has vertical lines separated by the width of a brick and horizontal lines separated by the height of a plate. It's useful for building models that are primarily studs-up. The paper was previously available on Lego's website but has since disappeared. I've uploaded a pdf here. Here's what the drawing looks like overlaid: I usually colorize the drawing to make it stand out against the grid. Adjusting Numbers and Selective Compression From the earlier equation, you might remember that the distance between wheels scaled to 4.72 studs, which is not a whole number. In cases like this, I round to the nearest whole number (in this case 5). This process introduces some distortion in the model, but it's usually small and hard to detect. Here's another example where the dimensions didn't quite work out: Here, the distance between the center wheels and the two outside ones is ~5.5 studs. It would be inconvenient to place the middle wheel in that position if I wanted to implement working drive rods. For this model, I used a technique called selective compression. Selective compression is a modeling technique where certain features of the prototype may be reduced or omitted to reduce the size of the model. For example, a model-maker might omit some windows on a building while retaining their size and spacing, resulting in a smaller model. For the above model, I shortened the distance between the first and last driving axle by 1 stud: This yielded a more usable spacing of 5 studs between axles. Conclusion I hope you've enjoyed this look into my planning process for train models. Let me know your thoughts. If there's interest, I'll continue this series with some posts on building and motorizing models. Cheers!