R2-D2 - Limited Edition Full Size Kenny Baker Artoo
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Surely you've hit "support" by now, so I don't know what else to say. Or maybe you're still in shock. Please share & follow, but you're probably doing that too because, well, ... because. Please consider supporting my other projects too because they could really use support!
Tons of folks have asked for plans to L3-G0, the Working Lego R2-D2, but that's not practical for Lego Ideas, so I'm offering this simplified and more appropriate model instead. (I know some of you are thinking this might not be practical either)
Note: the model being offered is the 2 leg Kenny Baker R2-D2, I mention the 3 leg L3-G0 model and his photos as a reference.
Why a Kenny Baker Artoo?
I'm calling it the Kenny Baker R2-D2 because it's based on the costume the actor wore in the original Star Wars movies. The name's not intended to imply an endorsement, merely an editorial description of the costume.
I chose to submit a 2 legged Artoo model is because my 3 leg L3-G0 Astromech has numerous interesting challenges, and violates about a bajillion of the Lego Ideas guidelines. To solve those issues, I've designed this new and different 2 leg R2-D2 model specifically to contribute to Lego Ideas.
The best thing about two legs is that the bricks align vertically, improving the structural stability of a brick-built model. This build is heavy, and trying to lever a bunch of Technic brick at eighteen degree angles is out of my comfort zone. The legs have to support the entire weight of the body and the head, something like 20lbs!
Choosing the Kenny Baker version also helps with the loads because the costume has hoses for Kenny's legs. Those provide a straighter path for the forces on the body and make it easier to support, much like Kenny did when animating the costume. You'll notice those hoses as the Dark Gray bits between the feet and the bottom of the body.
The Kenny Baker Artoo is about 16,000 bricks. Wow! Think about that when supporting, it's not going to be cheap. This will be the most expensive Lego set by far, but we all know how much fans want this set. Don't hesitate to sell your car (or at least your spouse's car) droids are better!
The only way we have to let Lego know that we're willing to buy sets of this scale is to share like mad and get 10K supporters faster than any project has ever done. We can do it! Even so, it's likely going to have to be a very limited edition (& premium) run.
These are the plans you're looking for
This model would have taken much longer to design and build without the terrific work that the R2-D2 Builders Club has done to collect information and plans for R2-D2. That helped make this Artoo one of the most accurate full size Lego R2-D2 builds around.
The Kenny Baker R2-D2 is a static model, unlike L3-G0, though the head can be turned manually. That won’t prevent you from going beyond the instructions and doing your own mods. Some things folks might choose to do:
All of these suggestions would require additional components not included with the static Kenny Baker R2-D2, requiring you to use your own creativity and talent
- With some creativity, his head can move back and forth with a Mindstorms EV3. That’s what I did for L3-G0 for the first Brickcon before he was finished.
- There are positions for LED lights in the digital logic displays.
- Speakers and sound could be added if one wished, such as with an EV3, or a phone & Bluetooth speakers.
- Adventurous folks could add additional toys. The movie Artoo has lots of opening panels and gizmos. L3-G0 can throw a lightsaber. What could you do with this build, a few motors and an EV3?
- More advanced robotics enthusiasts could modify this build with more traditional robotics components, achieving effects and movement similar to L3-G0.
The Kenny Baker R2-D2 is loosely based on my L3-G0 build, redesigned from the ground up specifically for Lego Ideas. As you've probably figured out, L3-G0 is a full size, working, Lego R2-D2 Astromech from Star Wars. He is about 16 thousand bricks, weighs about 60 lbs (30 kg) and took 9 months to build. His non-Lego robotics, aluminum bones and custom bricks make him inappropriate for Lego Ideas.
L3-G0's appeared at Emerald City Comicon, Rose City Comicon, Brickcon, fan outings with the 501st, the Pacific NW R2 Builders Club, and the R2-D2 Builders Club. He attended the Cinerama premiere of The Force Awakens in Seattle, and numerous charity events. At Brickcon 2015 he won the People’s Choice Award! Note that L3-G0 is a completely different model, I am contributing the Kenny Baker 2 leg R2-D2 Idea, and not L3-G0, to Lego Ideas, so please set your expectations accordingly.