44

All Aboard! I'd like to add my all-time favorite LEGO piece: x870cc02, THE BLACK WHISTLE! The white brick is a microphone. Attach it to your train's motor and BLOW THAT WHISTLE! Depending on how short (or LONG!) your whistling was, the train would go forwards or backwards. Real-world use: Not only did it drive your train round the bend, but your ...


30

The Mario element has six switches on the front: The inside of the pants in the power-up sets include six plastic ridges that can be either high or low. They interact with the switches on Mario's torso in much the same way as the cuts on a key interact with a particular lock. The torso reads the pattern on the buttons to determine the power-up state. Here's ...


27

Ø is a pretty standard notation for diameter. So w/Ø 3.2 Shaft means the item has a shaft that has a 3.2(mm) diameter.


23

The studless have SEVERAL advantages over the studded design especially when you want to include moving parts. Just the clearances between connections is important. Sariel sums it up in his book well. He says there are advantages to both systems (stud-full, for example, are more rigid) but the fact that the stud-less look more realistic and, of course, the ...


22

I believe the main reason is so that the pieces are easy to identify in the instructions - as many LEGO sets don't have the Technic style "List of elements used in this step" it's always a fun game of "Spot the difference" to see what's changed: If those pieces were all red, then the target audience (5+ on those sets for example) might find it very ...


20

The regular connector have simple angles which are multiples of 22.5°. #4 is 45°, #3 is 22.5° and #5 is 67.5°. That's pretty boring stuff, but there you go. The 53.5 angle isn't as bizarre as you would think and there's a very good reason for it (and less boring to me, but YMMV). That reason is that it forms a Pythagorean triangle, and specifically the ...


20

The holes in Lego Technic work very well as holes. By which I mean, I have built very successful motor-driven cross slides for small machine tools using Technic pieces. When paired with nominally 4.8mm metric ground rod (which tends to have a negative tolerance) the 4.8mm holes are a nice sliding fit. Imperial 3/16" rod at about 4.76mm also works, but is ...


20

Minifig accessory "shovel" can be used for dispensing minute amounts of a powder. Urban legend attributes such usage to drug dealers. The fact that amazon lists digital pocket scale (0,1 g resolution, 100g max) and an airtight container as "frequently bought together" hints it's more than just a legend and LEGO shovels are indeed used in this way.


19

These pieces are frequently used for decoration now, but they were originally used for sliding doors, particularly on train sets. Here's one of the first uses from set 7838 in 1983: While they could be used in structures, these were frequently used for putting doors on the train cars themselves: These parts can also be used to create tracks for other ...


19

I once published a paper in a peer reviewed scientific journal using data gathered using a remote translation stage constructed from Lego Technic. I could only get ~ +-1mm accuracy out of it, where the proper stages were more like +- 0.1mm, but it was good enough for a proof of concept and the proper stages were on back order. Of course many people would ...


17

One obvious answer is all components of the power functions family. Lights can be used as lights, motors can be used as motors.


16

I think the most important aspect is a matter of geometry. With studded beams, you're constrained by the form factor of the regular LEGO brick, which isn't a cube but a 5:5:6 cuboid. This means that every time you need to change the orientation of things, you'll have to think about how you're going to do it, and use plates and whatnot between beams. It's ...


16

Although I can't think of any sets that make use of this technique, I have found that the Slope, Curved 4×1 Double No Studs fits perfectly under the new-style arches.


16

The Travis Brick is the 1×1 brick with studs on four sides. The nickname arose amongst LEGO Space builders. It was nicknamed The Travis after talented Space builder Travis Kunce. He liked the part so much he had a tattoo of it. The brick is especially useful in SNOT techniques as it has studs on all but the bottom surface.


16

Picture little blurry, but this is what I see... The builder attached the tiles to Part Number Forty-Seventy. Part #4864a, the (black) window piece is really trans-black in color, but the way it's used here, with it being reversed and all, obstructs the proper identity of the white 1x1 bricks, causing some viewing tricks on the eyes...


16

There are two variant of that, which look very similar: Stud.IO lists them as: Brick, Modified 2 x 4 - 1 x 4 with Recessed Studs and Thick Side Arches Brick, Modified 2 x 4 - 1 x 4 with Recessed Studs and Thin Side Arches These can be seen below, thick in red on the left, and thin in blue on the right in the top picture (not a valid colour): The ...


16

For this experiment we're using the wheeled Duplo push and go motor block and red cabin from Set #10874. The wheel width of the motor is the same width as a non motor base. So, for this train to stay on the six stud track, the wheels need to sit either on the inside of the tracks or the outside of the tracks. As the last picture shows, the wheels ...


15

The full-base 1x1 round bricks were produced from 1955 until 1963, during the period when LEGO pieces were made from cellulose acetate (CA) plastic, but were sold until about 1966. According to Gary Istok's Unofficial LEGO Sets/Parts Collector's Guide the solid-stud full-base 1x1 round brick was only ever made from CA plastic. After the supply of them ran ...


15

It's difficult to tell exactly what part this fragment came from, but it looks like it is part of a broken Technic gear or pulley. It looks like it probably came from 3736: Your fragment looks like it was probably once one half of the center axle hole of that part. In terms of repair, I suppose you could try to glue this back together, but given that the ...


15

The web pieces made of flexible string are perfectly serviceable real-life webs, even if they are too small for most applications. Of course the LEGO brand magnets are working real-life magnets as well. Some sets have included large air bellows that could be compressed manually (i.e. hit) to supply a burst of air to launch a projectile or a racecar. The ...


15

Barb / Claw / Horn - Large Flexible and Plate, Modified 1 x 1 with Tooth Vertical Ice Cream Scoops


14

For the short answer, Duplo studs are indeed taller than twice the height of a Lego stud. And don't rely too heavily on measurements you get from ldraw (and not just for Duplo). For a really long-winded history on this... First, note that when I authored the original Duplo parts I never actually measured them with a ruler or calipers, as there was no need....


14

In addition to what jncranton wrote, the plate with the rail is a perfect fit for sliding in the brick with groove: You can see an example of that technique in the Cloud City set:


14

This is a Minitalia brick - Lego produced different bricks for a while in the seventies for Italy (per Gary Istok's latest information: because the original LEGO was deemed too expensive). Minitalia bricks have weaker plastic (which shows on the studs on your brick) and don't use the Tube system underneath the brick, but an older patent which has the X marks....


14

This tiny tiara piece is smaller than the 1x1 round plate on all sides (middle piece in my image below).


14

According to the set designer for the Paranormal Intercept Bus set, Niek van Slagmaat, the released product contains 3 references in total, which he identified in a presentation at BrickFair Virginia 2019. You can skip ahead to the 22:43 time to hear him talk about the sticker sheet and the references it makes, which are listed below. Rock Raiders icon ...


13

this brick has always annoyed me, when sorting my bricks


13

The problem isn't with molding machines, but with storage. Every distinct element (part/colour combination) has to be stored until it's no longer going to be used in production; presumably some are stored for spare parts and other ancillary uses. The robotic warehouse has only a certain number of slots (a mere 0.5 million), so there's only so many ...


13

I would tend to say that any part produced for only one set would qualify, especially if said set is priced high. Looking at the inventory of 10179 Millenium Falcon UCS for example, the following candidates come to mind: Light Bluish Gray Boat Mast Rigging Long 28 x 4 Dish 10 x 10 Inverted (Radar) with Radiating Spokes Pattern on Concave Side although it's ...


13

Some of it may be your own perception changing, such as a room you remember being big when you were a kid, but which you find small as an adult. So when you perceive bricks as being softer, it could actually be that they aren't, but that your perception changed. (If you were to walk barefoot on LEGO bricks for one hour per day, your feet would eventually ...


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