Samurais are warriors that ruled medieval Japan.
The samurai’s helmet, also known as Kabuto, is one of the most important gear for the warrior. It symbolizes a samurai’s skill, personality and prestige.
This project recreates these fascinating historical artifacts with LEGO.
This set includes three unique helmet designs. They are based on the Kabuto helmets wore by three great warriors in the Sengoku period: Sanada Yukimura (真田幸村), Tokugawa Ieyasu (德川家康), and Oda Nobunaga (織田信長).
Sanada Yukimura, known as the “Crimson Demon of War” is a samurai best known for leading the defense against Tokugawa forces in the Siege of Osaka. Yukimura’s famous red armor features deer antlers on the helmet. The forehead decorative piece (Maedate) shows the Sanada clan emblem, six pieces of coins. In Japanese mythology, the dead uses six coins to buy passage into the afterlife. This represents the Sanada clan is ready for death at any moment, and has no fear in battles.
Tokugawa Ieyasu is the founder and first shogun (military leader) of Tokugawa shogunate, that ruled Japan from late Sengoku period to the Meiji Restoration. He once served as a general under Oda Nobunaga. After Oda’s death, Tokugawa became rival with another general, struggling for power to rule over Japan. Tokugawa launched the Siege of Osaka in this period, during which he clashed with Sanada Yukimura’s army. After the Battle of Sekigahara, Tokugawa seized power and became shogun, ending the war and established 300 years of peace.
Tokugawa’s helmet has golden leaves Maedate (forehead crest), and pronounced Fukigaeshi (wing-like guard pieces near the ears). The Tokugawa clan emblem, the triple hollyhock, is also featured on both sides.
Oda Nobunaga is the first “Great Unifier” of Japan, who ruled during the Sengoku period. He is known for his two contrasting sides of political methods. On the one hand, he fostered civil development such as free trades and arts. However, he was also feared for his brutal military style, and cruel punishment for political opponents. Although he succeeded in overthrowing the ruling shogun, and conquering many parts of Japan, he was eventually betrayed by his subordinate, and forced to commit seppuku. Oda wore dark armor with golden ornaments. The Oda clan emblem of a Japanese Quince blossom is featured on the Maedate.
The Shikoro(neck guard) comes in different sizes. Curved parts and LEGO plates are used here to recreate the look of suspended armor layers.
The Maedate(forehead crest) is a symbol of personality and loyalty. Golden pieces are used to capture the metallic look of real Maedate.
The Fukigaeshi(ear-like projections) is sometimes decorated with the samurai’s family emblem (also known as Kamon). Aside from decorative purpose, it also protects the neck guard suspension from sword slashes.
The Men-yoroi (mask) not only protects the face, but also strikes fear in opponents, usually displaying a stern or fearsome expression. The moustache symbolizes combat experience. Here, mask colors are chosen to complement the helmet designs.
The Shinobi-no-o (chin cords) ties below the jaw to secure the helmet. Color is carefully chosen to enhance the overall aesthetic. Plate pieces are stacked to simulate the appearance of rope and knot.
Total part count: 1464 (~488 parts for each helmet)
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