The ultimate Lego airplane – and its variations

This is one of the early Lego sets that I got. As far as I am concerned it is a real ‘design classic’. It has only 18 parts, needs no more and can do with no less. So simple and yet so effectively showing us the great old world of aviation. It’s not just a plane, it is Laurence of Arabia, The English Patient, the Red Baron, Indiana Jones and Le Petit Prince. I love to pick it up and fly it across the world. Roaoaoarrrrr….

The variations

This weekend, I gave a version of this model as a farewell present to my office buddy S. – needless to say that he plans to make a trip to Australia. I took the model apart and brought it in a box. ‘What is it?’ wondered S. and company. It turned out to be the start of a challenge. Here are the attempts to build the plane. None of them exactly right, but each of them a wonder of imagination.

Biplane take 1Three pieces in exactly the right locaction


Biplane take 2Biplane take 3Biplane take 4Biplane take 5Six!!


Biplane take 8.

Taking it completely apart and handing it to other contestants generates completely new solutions:

Biplane take 9

Biplane take 10Biplane take 11Biplane take 12.

When I pointed out that all designs had the blue cylinders next to each other and that they could also be put on top of each other, things developed quickly.


Biplane take 13.

And then the last remaining insight was that the plates can also be inserted between the notches.


Biplane take 14.


And then of course, other things could be imagined too …


Biplane take 15