This model of the John Hancock Center in Chicago is about 5.5 feet (1.65m) tall and contains nearly 13,000 LEGO pieces. It is about 1:270 scale and took about 80 hours to design, build, and glue.
Just like the real building, each of the four sides taper back slowly, decreasing a full third of the width by the time they reach the top. Not only do the real building's front and sides each taper at a different rate, but the diagonal "X" patterns are each at different slopes and different widths. That means there's 4 different slopes going on at any point! It's always pretty tricky to make slopes and diagonals with little rectangular LEGO pieces, so I did a lot of math and graph-paper-drawings before building anything. The easy part was making it look pretty!
I always love adding streets and city life to my models of buildings. It adds a lot of fun to the model and helps bring it to life! Here, you can see the busy street scene and the sunken plaza that leads the building's shopping and restaurants.
Creating the "X" patterns across the front of the building was trickier than it looks. The sides of the building step in half-a-LEGO-brick as the building tapers... but the X pattern does not, which necessitated some tricky LEGO maneuvers. :) One of my favorite LEGO pieces is the "jumper", which lets you offset pieces by half a LEGO brick.
There are 4 mechanical floors in the building. Each uses over 200 tiny pieces!
For some reason, I always love building the "roof junk". Antennas, pipes, transmitters... they're fun to build and they look cool. I was lucky to find a photo online documenting the building's various antennas and transmitters, and kept them as true-to-life as possible.
The street at the base of the building includes steps down to the sunken plaza, as well as a little street scene with a CTA bus, Chicago Police Department police car, and a cool red-and-white taxi cab.
Being from Chicago, this automaticly gets a 5 from me, it has amazing and accurette detail and gotta love da Blue Brothers scene. "I hate Illinois Nazis"
P.s. Mr. Ripley, its the Sears Tower, not the Willis Tower, you'll offend quite a few Chicagoans saying that, we like our traditions (which is why I hate Macy's).
Can you teach me some building techniques? Please? I'm one of those people who just build with bricks and know everything basic and nothing complex. That street scen is SO realistic! At first, I thought that was a street from a different line of toys!
great use of pretty basic shaped bricks to build something quite complexly shaped. The easy way out on this really would have been SNOT, but that you did it in such a pure traditional fashion speaks volumes.
It makes me feel small. How many bricks did you use? Can you please check out my speeder bike please? http://mocpages.com/moc.php/131616 ... ~Moses (Wouldn't it be nice if you made a sculpture of a goat?)
I've also been to the top, recently too!
Have you been to it Sean? Because in the bottom floor, in the line to get on the elevator to the observatory, there also is a scale model of the Hancock Center made from Lego.
Haha excellent! I spy with my little eye...THE BLUESMOBILE! Unfortunately I doubt that there's many people here that get the reference but that kind of made my day. It's one of my favorite movies.
It's 106 miles to Chicago. We've got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses...HIT IT!
big buildings like this, thoughb they might at first seem to have a repetitve buuild; once you look closer, yo really appreciate the work and structure; and from a distance just look really amazing !
nice street scene on the bottom :)
I like it
June 23, 2009
Another amazing LEGO building by Sean... I really like the plaza below ground level, and your "roof junk" is great. The last picture made me laugh (I doubt many of the younger people will get it though). ;)
Great building technique, the mini-scenes at the bottom are a nice touch. If I had been building this I would have maybe tried to make the "X" beams straight instead of stepped for a cleaner look - It's all Kelso's fault I'm now addicted to SNOT work. In any case, another amazing build by the master!
"It's dark, we've got half a pack of cigarettes, a full tank of gas and we're wearing sunglasses."
"Hit it!" Best movie ever. God, do I love that place. Last time I was there must've been six years ago (why did I move to Europe?). Come to think of it, I haven't eaten at the Cheesecake factory since I was there. Now I'm homesick.
Wow that building is insane, the details make it perfect and the design of the windows is great too, But the street scene with the mini people and mini cars makes it perfect! ~T
I like it
June 16, 2009
Wow coming from a Chicagoian this is amazing! And I'm suprised that you made the little resturaunt area. To make it short, Sean you have made an amazing build. Also great job on the "X"s on the exterior.-George
I like it
June 16, 2009
Oh and just out of curiosity, did you just make this for "fun" or are you putting this on display somewhere?-George
I like it
June 16, 2009
Sweet! Now if only it was snot, how amazing that would be!
I like it
June 16, 2009
Having been ther multiple times, this really looks just like it, Sean! this is simply excellent work, like all of the things you build.
You never cease to amaze me...Hey, I heard they are going to open a lego store in Orland Park Illinois. Thats right down the street from my house! They also said that a master builder would be there. Would that be you? Oh, and maybe you could help me get a job there?
Another beautiful piece! All of the activity at ground level is really fun (and the additional color adds a nice touch, too!). But, your engineering for the tapered effect is what really blows me away...SO well executed. Amazing stuff, Kenney!
Wow Sean, you really captured the JHC well!!!! It looks just like the real thing!!!!! HaHa, and great job on the Blues Brothers chase scene, but you've got to add more squad cars wrecked, like in the movie(LOL!) Great job once again!!!!! Keep up the excellent work!!!!!
Oh my. 'Side from the deflated eyeballs, melted brain, and shattered jaw, I rather like this model. 'Rather' meaning, extremely, positively, and really, and 'like' meaning love, adore, and amazed by. Amazing.
I was there very recently so it's awesome to see a LEGO model of the building. the 'x' pattern you use on the sides is really good, I can tell it took some work. the roof is cool with the antennae and the stuff all around it. I love the street level part of it because it looks so familiar. it looks just like the real thing, great job.
Quoting Nate .
Was it designed for someone/or a company [...] Its cool how you did it to scale also, my buildings are so small that that the scale of a person is like 1/10th of a stud.
Actually, at this scale people would be about 1/8th of a stud. I made them 1 stud each and then "scaled up" the first few floors so that you don't notice. I do this on all my models (even minifig-scale models.) Check out my Greenwich Village http://www.mocpages.com/moc.php/147 to read why. And yes... this was commissioned by someone who has a view of the real Hancock Center from their home.
Very Nice design. Was it designed for someone/or a company, or was it just a free build. Its cool how you did it to scale also, my buildings are so small that that the scale of a person is like 1/10th of a stud. I like the design with the criss crosing X patterns hold any architectural significance to the building by anychance or are they decoration.
As a citizen of Chicago, I can say this is without a doubt the best lego model of the John Hancock Center I have ever seen. The detail is stunning, the accuracy unheard of. The presentation, flawless. I love the sunken plaza (I go there to eat quite often!), and I love the antennaes.
You have something to be extremely proud of, Sean. Oh, and do you think you are going to put this in the Lego Store in Chicago? It would fit right in with the rest of the Skyline.
Anyway, i will probably be drooling over this and commenting at least 5 more times today, so just giving ya a quick head's up.
Now, let's see what that other notorious Chicagoan has to say about this beauty...Your move Phipson.
Yay! First comment, unless someone did it before and nearly at the same time as me... anyway, great work. I have checked and it looks alike greatly. Nice job man. Keep up the good work and many more MOCs to come. Bye.