Car Dreams

It may sound corny, but one of the things I want to in my life is build a Cobra replica car.  Knowing my track record with such projects, I should just work hard, save my money (maybe win the lottery) and just buy the thing.  The project would probably take too long and too much space in the garage…. but I just can’t let go of the idea.

Why the Cobra?  That and the 1967 Mustang are my two favourite cars.  It probably isn’t a coincidence that Carol Shelby had a hand in both of those cars.  They are both beautiful cars.  It also isn’t a coincidence that neither of these cars is suited for Canadian weather.  If I had them (and could afford the insurance) they would both be summer cars.  That would mean having them and my winter car….and people say money isn’t a solution.

I came close to buying the 67 mustang once.  I went to look at it with the hopes of purchasing it, but the owner, despite making the appointment, didn’t stick around to show it to me, or even talk to me.  I guess he didn’t like the cadence of my voice over the phone.  Luckily the car was parked outside his house (not a great option in winter in Canada).  His neighbour talked to me about it, but he didn’t give me the hard sell and I was able to leave with my money in my pocket.  Realistically, it wouldn’t have been a good purchase.  I was in the middle of my studies and within a 16 months would be off to Japan.  I didn’t know that at the time, but it is funny how fate works out.

I have never been close to that car again, but I still think about it.  I have seen them build those cars on various TV shows, and every time I have been a little envious.  I really need my own TV show.  They could let me build my dream car and document my mistakes (and probable injuries) for everyone to see….. I had better start working on my pitch.

In England, there is a car company called Caterham, which allows you to build one of those funky roadsters you see in British TV shows from time to time.  It comes as a kit and you assemble it.  It sounds like a dream, except that I watched those guys from BBC’s Top Gear get fed up and argue constantly about it.  They said that you might get satisfaction out of building it, but everyone else around you would go completely bonkers.  Of course, according to the video you can buy it assembled for an extra 2000 British pounds.  I am not sure what would be best.

Winter seems to have started early this year (there is snow on the ground), so I guess I had better put off the idea until spring…or I could just let it nag away at me all winter.  Such is the life of a dedicated hobbyist.

Competition Has Arrived

 

I would have to say it is official.  Nanoblocks have become a force to be reckoned with.  Why do I say that?  Surprisingly, it is not because there is a big push on them for the Christmas rush–though I did see them available at a store that had never had them before.  Instead, I give them credit because they have inspired some competition.

Micro Blocks, produce by a company called Loz, are now available.  They don’t seem to be available here in Canadayet.  This might have something to do with a bit of a conflict with the people who brought you Mega Blocks.  This company (based in Canada I believe) uses the name Micro Blocks for the blocks that share the same size with Lego.  Sounds complicated doesn’t it?

They seem to be competing in the same space as Nanoblocks.  They offer lots of architectural themed kits of world famous buildings.  This should appeal to adult builders as well as kids.  It also seems to have a broad international scope, so it should be easy to spread.

I am all for competition.  More tiny blocks equals more fun.  The other thing is that more block producers mean more designs and creative ideas.  It might also mean more interesting pieces.  I wonder if the two sets are compatible.

I don’t know if either Nanoblock, or this new Micro Blocks company will every dominate the space that Lego has, but I am interested nonetheless.  I know as a Canadian I will have to wait a long time before I see them, at least I can think good things about 2014.

2013 The Year of the Nanoblock

 
 
Will 2013 be the year of Nanoblocks?  Based on how many people have found my blog because of Nanoblocks, I would have to say  that it is very likely that 2013 will be the breakout year for Nanoblocks.

I really can’t base this idea on my blog alone, because there aren’t so many visitors to it yet–I am not complaining, maybe 2013 will be a breakout year for my blogs to…..



What comes in the package

There is other evidence.  Toys R Us started selling them this year, and anecdotally at least, they seem to be popular sellers.  I asked one of the clerks and he said business has been brisk.  I have seen the stock get low and replenished a couple of times (no I am not spending my hours haunting the local toy store….. hard to believe I know) and it seems like they are telling the truth.  I have also seen more traffic on the internet.  When I first got interested in Nanoblocks there weren’t too many sites, not there are a lot more.  There are also quite a few more YouTube postings about Nanoblocks.  So, the world is poised for a Nanoblock revolution.



the result
As for me, I should update you on my latest kit.  I did the Koala.  As I mentioned when I did the panda kit, I am more interested in the historical buildings than I am in the animals, but until we get more of those (there are more available in Japan, but not here yet…) I will probably do more of the animals.

The Koala was fun to do, and the results are good (I still like the panda more, but maybe it has to do with seeing the real ones at the Washington zoo.).  There are some challenging moments and you will feel a certain sense of accomplishment.  Anybody who has tried Nanoblocks will enjoy it, and at the same time this would be a good kit for new converts.  Considering the price, it is also certainly worth doing.
the leftovers

 Eventually, I will have enough leftovers to make something else.  Any suggestions?

The Panda Kit–a totally biased review

 
I resisted building some of the smaller Nanoblock kits because….because….actually, I don’t know why.  Maybe I thought I had to build the biggest and most difficult kits there were.  Maybe I just had grand visions.  Maybe I thought they were a little beneath me.

I bought the panda kit because pandas are cute–everybody knows that.

the kit contents
There are only two colours in the Panda kit and the kit is not rated too difficult.  That being said, I think the results were tremendous.  It looks really good, and it catches my eye every time I pass by that shelf.

great results
On a side note, I saw a woman buying ten nanoblock kits at Scholar’s Choice a couple of weeks ago.  She was planning on including them in loot bags given out at a kid’s party.  I was really impressed.  She was spending a fair amount of money on other people’s kids.  Those lucky children were going to get their first taste of nanoblock addiction–and I am sure some of them will be converted for life.