There was no toy I enjoyed more as a kid than my Legos. I remember the exact drawer in which we stored them and have vivid memories of building a two-story house with my Dad, with shutters that we would open and close each morning and evening. In the world before cable TV and the internet and iPads and computers, I had Lego (and Brio) — and that was all I needed.
Now that I’m all growns up, so to speak, with new hobbies and distractions and family obligations, it’s always fun to re-live some of that childhood nostalgia. My son loves playing with my old Brio set and Lego. What great cross-generational fun!
Which explains why I was so excited to stumble upon RedKB’s well-produced video showing how to make a Lego-adorned Rubik’s cube. (Being a far better cuber than yours truly, he did it for reasons other than nostalgia — using the Lego as a modular platform for bandaging a cube. Bandaged cubes fuse together two or more cubies to make solving the cube that much more of a challenge. Manufactured bandaged cubes exist, but you’re stuck with the speciifc way they’re bandaged and you can’t un-bandage them if you get stuck. The Lego bandageable cube offers 4,859 different bandaging permutations — and, if you get stuck, you just pop-off the bandages.)
Inspired, I followed Kenneth’s directions, bought the requisite goods (essentially a bunch of tiles from Lego’s Pick-a-Brick site and a QJ mini 3×3 cube), and got to work. Here are some pics of the process:
Overall, I was pleased with the outcome. Rounding the tile corners nearly induced carpal tunnel syndrome, until I realized that I could stack several tiles into a column, which corners I could round at once. My wrists thank me. I also could have done a slightly better job centering the tiles when I glued them. Even though I used a 6×6 plate to position all pieces on a face in exactly the correct relative position, the whole face worth of tiles needs to be exactly centered. Mine locks up and binds a bit; the one in Kenneth’s video does not. Finally, and most embarrassingly, I swapped two of the face colors when rushing to glue them. I’m somewhat color netural when solving, but not THAT kind of color neutral.
The color confusion and lock-ups make it hard to solve quickly. Here’s a 1:03 solve — with a tribute to Beastie Boys’ Adam Yauch (RIP):
My son and I really enjoyed this project. We ordered parts to make a couple a more — hopefully with the right color placement this time!