Friday, May 11, 2012

New Lego Release: Sopwith Camel

10226 Sopwith Camel
Lego has released a new model that I find interesting. It's made for the older 14+ set of builders. Actually, it may have been designed for builders older than 50 because I'm not sure how many 14-year-olds are aware of what a Sopwith Camel even is. For those not in the know, the Sopwith Camel was a British war plane used extensively in World War I. In fact, these planes shot down more enemy aircraft than any other Allied fighter of that war.
The model looks nice, as you would typically expect from the good folks at Lego, but what intrigues me about this model is all the string. String isn't anything new in Lego sets. I've had models that had string attached to little cranks or pulleys for anchors and cranes, and of course there was always string in the pirates sets to make the rigging look fancy on the ships. However, the string used on the Sopwith model functions differently than I've seen before. The string is routed around the wings and appears to even trail back inside the fuselage to the tail section. All of this maze of string is attached to the joystick in the cockpit. By moving the joystick around, it tugs on the strings and actually moves the wing and tail flaps in the same manner that it would on an actual Sopwith Camel. Very impressive! I wouldn't be surprised if the wiring diagram is a separate manual for this set.

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