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Legoland '57 Chevy Convertible
My interpretation of the famous '57 Chevy Bel Air from the cover of the Ultimate LEGO Book. I wanted to build this ever since getting the book in 1999, and now I've finally done it!
About this creation
I'll start you off with a couple of sloppy cell phone photos. The first one is just the result of a long, boring afternoon...



A few days later, and it's almost starting to resemble a car of some kind....?



9/24/2012. Now, that's more like it!



I'm not sure if I want to include the spare tire cover from the original Legoland version or not...



2/18/2013. I've offset the curved bricks on the front by half a stud to stay accurate to the original. Says the person who can't decide on the original's spare tire cover.



Complicated. Enough said.



The completed interior. Simple but cool.



The rear view mirror on the driver's side is still one of my favorite details.



Here's where things get even more complicated. We're going to go back in time to October of 2005, when my family and I took a long road trip out west to visit relatives. Of course we had to do plenty of sightseeing along the way, and one of the many places we stopped was Legoland California. I had gotten the Ultimate LEGO Book for Christmas several years before, so I knew to be on the lookout for some familiar car models. The following photos are just a few of the MANY that we took.











Might this be the same red convertible from the cover of the book?



Maybe. Just maybe. Ever since getting this book so many years ago, I've always wanted to build my own version. And now I think I finally have the skills and experience to do just that!



The end result should looking something like this.



Update: March 10th, 2013. Guess where all this chrome's going.







Oh. That was obvious...



The exaggerated hood and trunk areas. I think the Legoland designers did this on purpose so the car wouldn't look too "flat".



Shortly after adding the chrome, I was able to finish the hood spears. Then I made some final tweaks to the dashboard to look more like the cover car.


Update: March 11th, 2013. The last few parts I needed arrived today. And this was the result.

Try to spot all the minifig cutlery.





























































I'll admit there's a little bit of guess work involved in the rear of the car. I couldn't find any pictures of the original's posterior regions, so I modeled it after a die cast replica I had instead.



The 1957 Chevrolet is one of those rare cars that looks like it's flying, even when it's not moving.











































Some more rare chrome pieces that I'm VERY glad to have found!



The ridiculously complicated front end assembly. The whole thing slides out in one piece once the front bumper is removed.



This bit has been the source of some very nasty headaches over the past few months.



Update: March 14th, 2013. The transparent 1 x 4 tiles that form the trailing edges of the windshield were 1 plate too high, so I lowered them. It's a pretty subtle change, but I think it helped a lot to improve the shape.







Special guest appearance by Blue Fury. (Model Team 5541)



Normally I wouldn't post pictures of an official LEGO set. But these cars just look awesome together!

And 98% of the Chevy isn't my design either, sooooooo...


Before. Duh.



After. Double duh.



Nailed it.


Fun facts!!!

1. This is only the second 12-wide car I've ever posted here.

2. It's the heaviest car model I've posted here. Solid bricks all the way through.

3. The original might just be the most recognizable LEGO car in the world, thanks to its place on the cover of the Ultimate LEGO Book.

4. I decided 13 1/2 years ago that I wanted to build this, and I've just now finished it. That's my longest gap between between decision and completion. I was only 6 when the book came out, okay?

5. My parents totally didn't catch me making "vroom-vroom" noises with it in my bedroom floor this morning.

6. According to the book, each "Legoland style" car this size takes about 20 hours to design, and each contains around 500 pieces.

7. Never before have I been so proud of something that I made with LEGO.



I hope you enjoyed this post, because this has been an extremely long and frustrating build. But the end result is definitely worth it. The Black Mamba II was the last project I completed as a TFOL. And this one is my first as an AFOL. Well then... high-fives all around?


Rock around the clock, indeed.



Comments

 I like it 
  June 3, 2014
I really like it, it looks just like the one on the cover.
 I like it 
  February 1, 2014
Unbelievable, soo much detail on that scale! It's almost perfect!
 I like it 
  September 1, 2013
this deserve MUCH more attention - the perfection runs into this car. I loved all the details, all the stuff you've put here. A lovely piece of brick - and what an improvement from the first version!
  August 28, 2013
beautiful!:D
 I like it 
  June 24, 2013
A classic beauty!
 I like it 
  June 15, 2013
What a lovely build. Fantastic work all around.
 I like it 
  March 22, 2013
Wonderful work !
 I made it 
  March 13, 2013
Quoting Rick S. Hey Nate, I haven't been so active lately, but it's good to see you building again! Anyway, this is truly a beautiful car. And so much chrome! You definitely deserve a 5/5.
Nah, the brilliant designers at Legoland deserve a 5/5. But seriously, glad you like it!
 I like it 
  March 13, 2013
Hey Nate, I haven't been so active lately, but it's good to see you building again! Anyway, this is truly a beautiful car. And so much chrome! You definitely deserve a 5/5.
 I made it 
  March 12, 2013
Quoting hank erchief cool, does it have a suspension?
No, but there might be enough room for it to be added.
 I like it 
  March 12, 2013
Awesome!
 I like it 
  March 12, 2013
cool, does it have a suspension?
 I made it 
  March 12, 2013
Quoting TheLegoNoitAll . Beautiful! 500 parts? most of my models are smaller and take more than 700 parts, does this open at all?
Nope. Being a Legoland model, it's more focused on just looking cool. The complex construction doesn't really allow for opening features to be added, unfortunately. And as always, thanks everyone!!!
 I like it 
  March 12, 2013
I remember getting that book and I oogled at that LEGO Chevy convertible. I always wanted to make it but never had the parts. Looks fantastic in black w/ red seats :)
 I like it 
  March 12, 2013
Beautiful! 500 parts? most of my models are smaller and take more than 700 parts, does this open at all?
 I like it 
  March 12, 2013
This has turned out excellently well! ;-)
 I like it 
  February 28, 2013
Very nice work.
 I like it 
  February 20, 2013
Beautiful car, looks even better than the Legoland original.
 I made it 
  February 19, 2013
Thanks, guys! Finding all of those chrome pieces is probably the hardest part. But so far, so good. Also, you can view a full set of my Legoland photos from 2005 here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/59678623@N04/sets/72157632805030095/
 I like it 
  February 19, 2013
nice curves and lines!
 I like it 
  February 19, 2013
Really looking 57 Chevy'ish'! Cool! :)
 I like it 
  February 19, 2013
Awesome work!
 I like it 
  February 19, 2013
That's looking fantastic!
 I like it 
  February 19, 2013
Nice. With the front chrome it will be perfect.
 
By Nate Andrews
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