Just when you thought your kids couldn’t get enough playtime, certified LEGO builder Rene Hoffmeister and colleague Pascal Lenhard spent six weeks doing exactly that—and pretty much only that. Hoffmeister and Lenhard (who are adults, by the way,) used 400,000 LEGO bricks to build a life-size Volkswagen T2 campervan that’s modeled after the 1967–71 VW camper.
Unlike the actual-size Bugatti Chiron that LEGO created last summer, the VW doesn’t actually work. I’d consider that a missed opportunity, particularly for robbing people of the chance to go camping in something a lot more difficult to assemble than a tent. Although, if the stove actually worked, it would surely disturb the fresh scent of nature with an odor of burnt plastic.
Despite its lack of function, the life-size T2 is an amazing work of art—even more so when you consider that Hoffmeister and Lenhard had only six weeks to complete the project in time for the start of Munich’s f.r.e.e. trade fair on February 20. The van was unveiled earlier today, but it took a lot of overtime to complete it. Additional time was required because Hoffmeister, one of only 12 officially certified LEGO model makers in the world, and Lenhard discovered they were missing 20,000 transparent bricks for the T2’s windows, despite their planning efforts. Oops.
To make up for the lost time, Hoffmeister says, “Essentially, we would have needed a nine-day week.” Since there’s no such thing, the only option was to work nights. Thanks, Mom, no bedtime!
The duo used 3-D images to produce a construction plan, which included calculating the number of bricks required. The rigidity of the side walls and windows was another important aspect to consider.
The determination paid off. The T2 is more than 16 feet long and weighs over 1543 pounds, and it includes Westfalia pop-up roof, sliding door, and interior fittings. More details can be found here.