Sunday, May 31, 2009

More 2009 TECHNIC parts

In addition to some new TECHNIC parts expected in 2H sets, want which we've been already discussing [1]*,

Respectively 63869, 64178 and 64179.

there are some new ones, appearing now with the new Space Police and Agents sets. Despite being highly specialized, they may turn to be useful.

Respectively 85940 and 85943.

You may found them on sets 8967, 5970, 5971 and 5972.

*) We also suspect about a new part design for TECHNIC gear racks [2, 3], which however we have not yet seen any images from that part alone.

Week TechVideo, 2009 #22 - LEGO TECHNIC Indoor Racing

End of last March (...yes I know, I've been silent for awhile...) some Kostky members joined for their 2nd LEGO TECHNIC Indoor Racing (LTIR).

Seven racers competed in seven disciplines: sprint, slalom, parking, jump, exhibition, race on circuit and special discipline (Two rounds each, against each other. Once chasing and once trying to escape with a 20 sec. time limit).

Special care was put on every detail. The track...

The obstacles design...

The competition labels for the cars...

The cars in competition (here some of them)...

And of course the final classification.

Congratulations for the winner! and the others of course.

This was not the first time they have did it. You may also look into some videos of LTIR first edition [1, 2, 3, 4].

It looks these guys use to have a lot of fun.
However I can assure you, they have not finished here. Soon you will see here at TBs , what else they have been doing...

Thanks Sebastian, for letting me know about your community activities.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Black NXT is now available in Europe, from S@H

LEGO Shop@Home managed to get some MINDSTORMS Black NXTs, back into Europe.

Thus since this week, the Special Edition Black NXT is available for ordering from S@H also at European countries (also valid for Australia and New Zeland).

After a small mistake at some countries, it is now tagged for 149,99€.

In my opinion the best color fit, for a TECHNIC model. Thus a must have!
Hurry up, before it sells out.
As you might remember, this a limited series of 1998 units (because it celebrates the year when the original MINDSTORMS, was released).

Monday, May 11, 2009

TBs TechTips 23 - Connecting the PF Receiver to 9V

Remember TBs TechReview 01, where Fernando showed the possibilities the 8886 Extension Wire offered in interconnecting the new Power Functions system and the old 9V system? Well, turns out the Infrared Receiver doesn't work when powered from an old 9V source.

The discovery was made by simonwillems from Eurobricks, and the ensuing posts on that thread were quite interesting to follow, to see several workarounds brewing.

One of them was suggested by simonwillems, the one Fernando added to the TechReview. It has the advantage of using less parts (good for mobile/cramped constructions), at the cost of having only one of the receiver's outputs available.

The other one is the focus of this edition of TechTips. Lasse D suggested adding an empty Power Functions battery box in the circuit. Since the receiver appears to use the power pins of the PF connector, the adapter cable appears to supply power only to the motor pins, and the battery box can power both motors and receivers, the latter would probably bridge the two incompatible circuits. Sounds complicated? Philo explains it brilliantly: just scroll down to the "Power Functions working" section on his page.

Meanwhile, Lasse D reported success for his method. I tried it to see if it worked, and indeed it did! This is a short video explaining how to do it. Basically, just plug the receiver/adapter cable connection on an empty PF battery box, and turn it on. The polarity should be the same as the power source: if the LED on the battery box doesn't light up, just slide the switch the other way.

Of course, I used an AC adapter and train speed regulator to power the receiver, but any 9V source could be used instead: from the standard old, new and small battery boxes, passing by NXT's (with some power modding), to more esoteric solutions, like Control Centres, train track contacts or even solar panels! This is one of the beauties of LEGO: the imagination is the only limit.

It has been asked in the comments if the same result could be achieved using a PF Pole Reverser instead of the battery box. I tried it in the weekend, and regret to inform that it doesn't work.

Friday, May 1, 2009

TBs goes to PLUG exhibition at Lourinhã 2009 (Portugal)

It is a while since last post, I know...
And several topics to post about the new PF elements on the way.

We've been preparing for PLUG's biggest event this year (Lourinhã 2009) which meant a lot of work and that's the reason for the absence.
One entire week open to public, a few tenths of thousands visitors and long queue of people in the street to come in...

Nevertheless I'm willing to take the opportunity to present here at TBs , another Techball live broadcast.

Do you want to see more!?

Ok! We plan to make a few live broadcasts at TechnicBRICKs live video channel, between today (1st May) and next Sunday (3rd May).
You may try to return here between 15:00 and 16:00PM (GMT+1) these days and most likely you will see the cars playing around at some periods in this time frame.

Occasionally you may find it streaming at different periods, but most likely nobody will be here following the chat.

Live video on top and live chat room at bottom. Tell us what do you think.

As alternative, you may follow it directly on this URL.


Edit:Don't have the Techball video streaming running at the moment, so lets feed some images with an overview from the event city and trains layout.

Live video on top and live chat room at bottom.

Last Update: 2009.Mai.02 17:15 GMT

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