Questions tagged [history]

Questions that relate to the history of The LEGO Group and it's products.

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34
votes
4answers
8k views

When did LEGO decide that it was okay to put a stud into a Technic hole?

At one point, LEGO didn't really support putting a stud into a Technic hole, stating that it caused too much stress on the bricks. And for a while, there were no sets where that's the case. However, ...
33
votes
1answer
4k views

How has the basic brick changed over the years?

The basic 2x4 brick has many versions. For example the modern one has thinner walls and funny shaped tubes compared to an early 1980s brick. What were the changes over the years and how did they ...
30
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6answers
6k views

Does the LEGO Group condone war toys?

What is the LEGO Group's position on war toys? Other brands make tanks and army stuff. I noticed LEGO sets include more realistic guns in the Star Wars range than they used to. What's up with that?
23
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4answers
3k views

What is the male:female ratio of gendered minifigures?

For many years now, Lego has provided more detail on the face and bodies of minifigures. One of the effects of this is that the usually visually gender-neutral minifigures of my childhood (with the ...
22
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1answer
3k views

Where and when did the straight block letter LEGO logo appear on brick studs?

The LEGO logo that appears on the tops of brick studs has had several styles over the years. In the US, when Samsonite began manufacturing LEGO bricks, they apparently made some alterations to some of ...
21
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6answers
1k views

What is the basis of purism in LEGO building? [closed]

LEGO purism is the idea that LEGO constructions should be made with only with official Lego blocks with no modifications. Other bits of plastic, papercraft, metal supports, and so on are frowned upon. ...
21
votes
1answer
1k views

Why aren't LEGO bricks cubic?

The height of the 1x1x1 LEGO brick is 6/5 times its width. Is there any particular reason for these proportions? And especially why not making a cubic brick (it would have made SNOT building easier)?
19
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4answers
84k views

What was the first set produced by The LEGO Group?

What was the first Lego set produced, and when was it first released?
18
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8answers
53k views

What is considered the most valuable LEGO set?

Which Lego set is considered to be the most valuable set to own? I'm not talking about the most expensive set, and clearly it has to be out of production already, but when trying to collect complete ...
16
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2answers
1k views

Why are they called “minifigs”?

Were larger-scale LEGO figures the standard at some point in the past? It just seems odd to me that they're called "mini" when they're basically the only kind of LEGO figures available (not counting ...
16
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2answers
5k views

When did LEGO stop producing Technic action figures?

I recently got interested in LEGO Technic again. The last set I own is maybe 15 years old, so my knowledge is a little bit outdated. Back then some of the Technic sets had action figures included, ...
15
votes
3answers
2k views

Can anyone find a photo of the “LEGO bricks, not LEGOS” insert?

Debates aside; I have been told that there used to exist a message either in Lego catalogs or inserts in boxes that reads as this: The word LEGO® is a brand name and is very special to all of us in ...
14
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1answer
4k views

What sizes of bricks (building scales) have carried the Lego brand name?

Apart from regular Lego and Duplo, what other sizes of brick have there been that have carried the Lego name? What is the compatibility between the different building scales?
14
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1answer
1k views

Who is (or was) Susan Williams?

I've heard the name "Susan Williams" associated with LEGO products, especially in the 1980s. Who is / was she?
12
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2answers
1k views

How did the LEGO Duck become a classic icon?

The LEGO handmade wooden Duck was released in 1935, long before the LEGO Brick was created. Many other wooden toys were made which can be seen in The Lego Museum, the duck however features in books, ...
12
votes
1answer
818 views

LEGO and fuel company commercial relationship?

Over the years LEGO has used a number of real-world fuel company names on its products: ESSO Shell Exxon. I'd be interested to understand the commercial relationship between LEGO and these companies....
12
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3answers
3k views

What was wrong with monorails?

From this answer: Then there's the whole problem of parts which are simply not in production any longer, and for which the cost of reproducing them would offset the potential benefits of reissuing ...
11
votes
1answer
349 views

What happens to the portions of large glued displays that aren't retasked into a different display?

When LEGOLAND dismantles a glued display, is it recycled into something other than LEGO, or do they have to be thrown away? I know certain portions of a display might be utilized again in a different ...
11
votes
1answer
148 views

How To Sort Out 3rd Party Technic Clones From LEGO Originals?

I've recently bought bulk parts, and wish to sort out the official LEGO pieces from the inferior quality 3rd party clones. On bricks I can easily spot-out the clones, becasue they don't sport the "...
10
votes
1answer
3k views

List of prototype or unreleased themes

I recently discovered the unreleased "Seatron" theme as I was looking around for building ideas. After some searching, I also found the unreleased Europa theme which seems to be set in the 1700s and ...
10
votes
2answers
890 views

What is the history of “Modulex” blocks?

I have seen a few very small models using something called "Modulex" pieces and have even heard that they are directly related to LEGO somehow? They don't seem to be around anymore so I was wondering ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

Was there ever cadmium in Lego bricks?

I remember a rumour from my youth in the late seventies / early eighties, that there was supposedly cadmium in older (relative to that time) Lego bricks. Searching for Lego cadmium yields quite a lot ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

Why doesn't LEGO bring back old series as they were “in the day”

As many of you probably can tell, LEGO has been rehashing old series and giving them a new twist (eg. Rock Raiders -> Power Miners, or whatever its called). Why doesn't LEGO actually make some of ...
10
votes
2answers
292 views

What's the time on the LEGO clock tile?

I am reasonably confident that this tile is meant to be 2:57:38, but I am wondering if anyone knows why this time might have been chosen? I also recognize the Disney clocks all have a different ...
9
votes
3answers
433 views

Is the visual.ly infographic information about the minifigure reliable?

Visual.ly just release this awesome infographic about the LEGO minifigure. It this all correct information?
9
votes
2answers
486 views

Why are Technic holes slightly smaller than studs?

We know that Lego studs almost never should be placed into Technic holes because studs are slightly larger and will stress the hole. However, why is there this discrepancy? Surely when Lego created ...
9
votes
1answer
892 views

Lego with hollow posts underneath - dates?

When did TLG change the small posts on the underside of the modern bricks and plates , eg 1x6 and 1x4, to hollow ones?
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Did LEGO ever make bricks without the LEGO logo?

While sorting my LEGO collection I found bricks with two different fonts and many without a font at all. I also found Tyco and Mega Bloks bricks. So did LEGO ever make blank bricks?
8
votes
2answers
404 views

What about these old houses?

I recently inherited two old Lego buildings. Unfortunately I have virtually no information about the history of them other that they been part of the inventory of an old hardware store closed a decade ...
7
votes
3answers
6k views

Does the word Lego have anything to do with Latin verb lego?

When I started learning Latin and learnt the verb "legō" specifically (meaning, "I collect, gather"), I suddenly realized "Oh, so that's where the Lego name comes from!" and it made perfect sense. It ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the name of this Lego Blacktron anime/cartoon?

Once upon a time, in a distant past there was a Lego Blacktron series: The Lego Blacktron series has a logo/symbol, it's a yellow triangle with small black triangle inside. Now my question is: about ...
7
votes
1answer
198 views

What came first? Print or sticker?

Recently I learned that there seems to be no strategy in the LEGO design about when to use stickers and when to use prints in a given set. My question is what LEGO used first to decorate bricks: ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Why are pat pending bricks rarer and treasured more than patented bricks?

My mum and I share a love of LEGO, but she is a huge collector of LEGO with easily 100kg spread across the garage, her room and my nan's garage. When she gets time to sit down and sort through her ...
7
votes
2answers
349 views

Which “Real World” Company was the first to have its' name featured in an actual (numbered) Lego set?

Excluding the Lego company, which "Real World" Company was the first to have its' name featured in an actual Lego set?
7
votes
1answer
389 views

How do they decide when to remove an element from production, and what happens to the molds when they are retired?

We all know certain LEGO elements are no longer being produced. How do they decide when to remove an element from production, and what happens to the molds when they are retired?
7
votes
1answer
611 views

Are the older (hollow underneath) brick elements considered “collectable”?

I know. I know. All LEGO elements are collectable. I mean are the older, tubeless bricks valued above and beyond the fact that they are still viable pieces to build with?
7
votes
3answers
4k views

How many different types of Lego bricks have been produced?

I was curious and wondering: How many different types of Lego bricks have been produced since the start of the company in 1949?
6
votes
3answers
299 views

What minifig configuration has been included in the most sets?

Which minifigure configuration has been included in the most sets? I'm looking for the color of the head, arms, hands, legs, pelvis, and torso as well as the facial expression and any headgear. Please ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I know if this wooden LEGO duck is real?

I bought this wooden duck and I am wondering if this is a real LEGO item.
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Are these ATC bricks from the 1970's LEGO?

I have some Lego compatible basic bricks from early 1970s or late 1960s. Bought in Finland or maybe Germany or Sweden. Can anyone tell me more about them? As you can see, the interlocking mechanism ...
6
votes
1answer
978 views

How many themes have been released by LEGO?

I would like to know the various themes, current & discontinued, that LEGO has released in brick/element form.
6
votes
1answer
355 views

Significance of the switch from Legoland to Lego System?

In former times, Lego boxes used to feature a diagonal Legoland label in one corner. (See, for instance, the box of the Space Police I capital ship, set 6986.) Later on (if I recall correctly, ...
6
votes
2answers
346 views

Old LEGO movies

As I remember, it was about 1990 maybe some years earlier, there were movies, made by LEGO, they were about 3 minutes long, maybe longer. It was of course not computer-generated videos but normal, ...
5
votes
6answers
741 views

The controversy around clone brands

The origin of the self-locking building bricks Hilary Page was born in 1904 in Sanderstead, England. Along with several partners, Page decided to go into the toy business in 1932. In 1936, he began ...
5
votes
2answers
736 views

Are there any army-related LEGO toys?

I don't recall ever seen a LEGO tank, a LEGO minifigure figure or any army-related LEGO sets. I know that there are LEGO toys that imply some level of action/fighting, from police sets, knights, ...
5
votes
2answers
645 views

Does this 2x4 brick exist?

I've been working on a little history project to make a shadowbox/display-type thing of all of the major evolutions of the 2x4 brick over the years. (I know this can get really in-depth, and I'm ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Why was monorail offered the way it was?

There have only been 3 + 2 official monorail sets by Lego. Three monorails: (Space, Futuron) Monorail Transport System (Town, airport) Airport Shuttle (Space, Unitron) Monorail Transport Base And ...
5
votes
1answer
192 views

When did LEGO Minifigure Leg mold designs change?

I am trying to identify the changeover dates for different minifigure leg molds. e.g. a figure from 1978 has no visible seams on the legs figures from the late 1980s have visible seams, but it might ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Has TLG ever produced bricks without the LEGO branding?

Has LEGO ever produced bricks without the LEGO brand name on the parts, the packaging or both? I'm already aware of the following: Minitalia. Available in Italy in the 1970s. The bricks were ...
5
votes
1answer
312 views

What was the slot for in the 1950's slotted bricks?

Bricklink has a list of ancient bricks from the 50s that have slots in them. What was the purpose of the slot? Its positioning on various pieces suggests that there was something specific you were ...