LEGO© Creations

Collectible Minifig display case

15 February, 2014 (00:43) | LEGO© Creations

A warning – If you’re not really into the LEGO hobby or collecting, this might not be interesting or impressive.  There’s a fair amount of thought and planning in this build though, and I’m sure some enthusiasts will enjoy it.


When I came out of my dark ages, I thought collecting LEGO sets was silly.  I still do.  I want parts.  However, when I started to stumble on collectible minifigs, I really enjoyed them.  At first, I stuck to my rule that everything I own must be listed for sale on bricklink.  I began collecting all the CMFs by putting the cheapest few of each minifig on my wanted list, so that if I placed an order at any of those stores, I’d know to buy it because it was the cheapest available.  I’d then turn around and list it for a higher price.  This strategy was working well.  It was satisfying my need of “gotta catch ’em all” while maintaining a reasonable investment.  All was going fine, until I was only missing a handful of figs to have a complete set…I started questioning why I had been accumulating these…I needed to stop the madness and display the full collection!  I betrayed my words and have deemed CMFs my guilty collection.

But, how to display them?  I’m not the only one wanting to do this.  A quick search around the internet for what other collectors do provided some interesting and pretty solutions, but none struck me as “right”.  With LEGO releasing a new series frequently, a fixed height/width solution wouldn’t be scalable.  A stair-like display would easily grow out of control.  Using store bought display cases seemed like cheating and expensive, and also took up too much real estate since you can’t stack them.  So, necessity inspired creativity.

IMG_1479My “modules” snap into a rotating stand.  Each row of 4 spins independently.  Number of rows is customizable.  Easy to take down and store, easy to swap out modules, and easy to expand.  Each module is built using the color of the corresponding series.  A notable challenge here was series 5, which uses azure, but between the medium azure and dark azure available in parts, neither match well.  My solution here was Maersk blue, a color exclusive to Maersk sets.  As luck would have it, that color matches the question marks in the packaging perfectly AND it comes in all the needed brick, tile, and slope parts!  As far as I can tell, I’m the first and only person to make this match.

I do have the LDD file if you’re interested in building one.


I still have to build the module for the olympic figs.  Since there are only 9, not sure if I’ll make it the standard size or not.  I also have to come up with a solution for the individually released figs, like the BR guy, toy soldier, and whatever else comes with the minifig stand.  Balance to the stand may be a factor with both.  Anyway, this might be a good solution for any collection of minifigures, as the size of the case and number is customizable and interchangeable.  I left a 4 x 4 tiled area on top to use the number decal from the old soccer sets, as I did with my version of Settlers of Catan, and have the sticker applied according to the series they represent.  It could also be applied to the front vertical bricks, or you could event get some custom printing done.  I should also try to come up with a nice top for the stand too…
















Daddy Log

Day 1: Without Hnn-Hnn and Bumpa

11 January, 2014 (13:41) | Daddy Log

It’s been less than 24 hours since I dropped hnn-hnn (Jan-Jan) and Bumpa off at the airport.  Survival mode is already engaged.  The Mirkwood fog must have been pouring through the vents as we slept.  What day is it?  What’s that noise?  What’s that smell?  I sold my soul to the sirens of Sesame Street at 6:30am.  I don’t know how much longer I’ll last.  Though sickness fills this home, no one is able to escape.  The binky has managed to get away a few times, but a search party has always foiled its attempt for freedom.

I begin to realize my house is full of mouths to feed – and they’re all begging for more.  There’s the machine in the kitchen that spews steam at me if I interrupt its meals.  It wants all my remnants of past snacks and failed attempts to get Juliette to eat lunch.  There’s the tall machine with cold fluid pumping through its veins that bellows for milk and produce.  I can hear the deep moans of the twin beasts in the laundry room.  “Feed me, Josh, feed me”.  Kallie keeps the tiny mouth satisfied.

We are still trying to find the circle of life with the introduction of a new species to the food chain.  We give Madeline nourishment – and she’s learning to smile back to nourish us.  It’s about finding the rhythm.  1, 2, 3, 4.  Me, you, her, more.  Sleep, eat, clean the floor.  Repetition.  It’s not jazz yet, but we’re getting the groove.

If you’re reading this, it means I’ve come up for air.  All is well.  Send love.

Thoughts & Ideas


8 January, 2014 (13:31) | Thoughts & Ideas

I’m visualizing a software for organizing digital photographs. it should be able to take feeds from multiple sources, like a home network of phones,pcs, and macs. the UI (user interface) has a 3d globe on it, and you can spin the glob around to see all the places photos were taken by reading their geotagged data. There should be a slider to limit the display of photos during a specific time range. Maybe some check boxes to select which feeds are available.

Digital photograph storage and organization is such a mess, and an exponentially growing mess at that. iPhoto makes great strides, but its not on the PC and there’s no really good way to bring multiple devices together. With filtering and face recognition, it would be easy to find “that one picture with me and you when we were at the baseball game years ago”. Rather than just scrolling through hundreds of thumbnails.

Thoughts & Ideas

God’s property

20 October, 2013 (23:48) | Thoughts & Ideas

I am God’s. I exist to serve His purpose for which He has designed and equipped me. These are constants and anything else is penultimate.

I have been a believer my entire self-aware existence. This is a curse and a blessing. I am blessed because I’ve been on a steady path seeking His plan my entire life. I am cursed because that steady path is often lukewarm and lonely.

I’ve often envied the testimonies of drug addicts and faithless. I’ve been star-struck by the teenager who goes to church while their parents stay home. These are the bold. These are the ones that burn with passion.

I live dangerously as comfortably numb. Too set in my ways to stray from Christ and yet too worldly to put my trust in Him fully. I do believe I am called to live in this world, but that only makes it harder to lead others, such as my children, to an even higher calling.

I could walk away from it all and dedicate myself to prayer and solitude without outside temptation, but faith without works is dead. I could study all the teachings of ancient faith and be filled, but lack relational ministry to all non-believers. I could raise my children in the path that they should go, but risk hypocrisy in my own trials. This is my omnipresent dilemma of an omnipresent God.

I settle. Sometimes by reasoning and sometimes out of frustration. I do not have the answers to the exam of life, and I sometimes lack the mental fortitude to believe my half-attempts will ever be reviewed.

Father, help me seek your purpose instead of inserting my own. Lead me so that I, too, may lead. Turn my focus away from those that judge my actions or lack thereof, for if they would seek your purpose, they would lift me up in spiritual community, and have that be returned 10 fold.

Poll the People

Do people want to sit at tables instead of booths?

14 September, 2013 (12:00) | Poll the People

I actually get anxiety about this question sometimes.  My butt is more comfortable in a booth.  I can get more control over my leg room in a chair.  I don’t have to worry about people walking behind me in a booth.  Juliette can fit better at a table.  Why aren’t there booths outside?  Which server/section is busier?  Which is further from the bathroom?


What's your seating preference?

View Results

LEGO© Creations

Brick the Bridge – A small tribute to Knit the Bridge

12 September, 2013 (14:16) | LEGO© Creations

During the month of August, the Knit the Bridge project yarn bombed the Andy Warhol bridge in Pittsburgh.  I was in love with the project for many reasons.  First, I love the yarn bombing phenom.  My other favorite pittsburgh yarn bomb is the Mr. Roger’s cardigan.  Second, I loved the scale and ambition.  This was an awesome feat of project management to get the volunteers and local officials all on board with the vision and carry it all out on time without issues.  Kudos to the team.

Kallie had mentioned that I hadn’t built anything new in a while, so I was searching for some inspiration.  I was sorting through some parts and I came across the yellow 1x4x3 fence.  I had just walked by the yarned bridge and the inspiration hit me right away.  Scale was going to be a problem.  Of course, I wouldn’t realize that until I bough ~400 of those 1x4x3 fence parts…but that’s beside the point.  I had started this mini version just to get some techniques down in the mean time.  I had emailed Steel City LUG member, Julia, who had contributed a panel for the knit the bridge project, and she gave me a link to the details about how many panels there were.  She also suggested I have LUG members contribute panels to the bridge.  I loved that idea!  Once I had the structure complete, I started having friends and family put on pieces, with the intention of having the public contribute to a larger scale version with the 1x4x3 fence when the LUG displays at the Future Tenant Art Gallery, September  19 – 21st.  This is about the point I realized, if I were to do a minifig scale model of the bridge with a 1:1 panel ratio…it would end up being about 17 feet long.  DOH!  That’s not reasonable, certainly for something without a home.  So, I’m settling for this build.  Stop in at the gallery, and if there’s still space left, you’re welcome to add a panel!

Thanks for all the overwhelming appreciation for the model!  if you have the time, I’d love your help to have the Cathedral of Learning become an official LEGO set by voting for it on Cuusoo!


In the press: