More images from our time machine

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Offshore Rig with Fuel Tanker

Those of you that have been visiting Brickset for a while will remember that earlier this year we were adding brand-new never-before-seen images of sets from the 1970s and 1980s. The last batch we did was in April and at the time we didn't let on where they had come from. All was revealed in the BrickJournal article about our visit to the LEGO archives in Billund that was published shortly afterwards.

A couple of people commented in the survey about the completeness of the database and the size of some of the images so I thought it was about time I finished the job and got the rest added. So today I have added new images of sets released in 1977. I think we managed to photograph most of the European-released sets. Most of the gaps in that list will be the US-only re-releases.

The armless and faceless minifig continued to populate LEGOLAND but still couldn't fit into any vehicles. The bendy-armed maxifig diversified into native Americans, construction workers and firemen. The big news of the year though, was the introduction of Technical sets (later to be renamed Technic). In 1977 I was 14 and probably would have grown out of LEGO were it not for Technic. I remember receiving 850, the yellow Forklift, for a birthday or Christmas and thinking that it was absolutely fantastic!

If you take a look at the Oil Rig set, 373, you can see one particular problem we encountered when photographing the boxes in the archive. Many of them were still wrapped in cellophane which made reflections a problem, but even worse was when the wrapper had broken, as was the case for 373. We wouldn't have been too popular had we removed it to get a better photograph!

I'll be adding 1978 and 1979 in the next few days, which were exciting years: the birth of the proper minifig and of classic space! After that I'll be going back further in time, to the 1960s.

Big thanks are again due to bluemoose for taking the photos and post-processing them to create such crisp, clean images.

15 comments on this article

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By in Germany,

OH YEAH!!! 1960s, HERE WE COME!!!

EDIT: Oh, I noticed that Minitalia sets now have proper bricks, intead of the cross inside it!

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By in United Kingdom,

What type of time machine did you use? Type 40? What does it blend in as? 373 reminds me of the BP oil leak...

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By in Germany,

@Dr. Leg: LOL. :) Yeah, Huw and bluemoose have managed to track down the Doctor! :)

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By in United States,

Well, then thank LEGO for Technic, I was shocked when I heard I rumor (false) that it would be retired this year. Now it is even more important in my book that Brickset might not exist without it. It should be interesting to see some new classic space pictures.

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By in Sweden,

Appreciated!

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By in United States,

Thanks so much Huw and Bluemoose!

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By in United Kingdom,

Can you ask them if I can go? :-)
seriously though, those photos will be a big help to the wider lego fan community

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By in United Kingdom,

Our pleasure :-)

Getting the opportunity to visit the archive was a great honour; one of the conditions was that we would share what we did with the rest of the community. The staff that we met were all great; very passionate about the products and the company, and very helpful and pleasant to work with once they realised that we were as passionate about LEGO as they were.

You can always go on the 'LEGO Inside Tour' - http://www.lego.com/eng/info/?page=eventdetailed
It doesn't mention it in the agenda, but I believe they've included a brief visit to the Archive as part of past "LEGO Inside" tours.

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By in United States,

at my grandmothers house she has a old maxfig :)

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By in United States,

So cool! 373 is the first big set I owned and still have instructions for it. Thanks!

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By in Netherlands,

Wow, already SNOT technique in the 373 :-)

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By in United States,

^ SNOT in the olden days usually consisted of them sticking a plate edge between two studs, which is something they frown upon nowadays :)

The headlight brick, or 'Earling' as it's named internally after its designer (http://www.bricklink.com/catalogItem.asp?P=4070) didn't appear until 1980. That was the part that really made SNOT practical.

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By in Germany,

@Huw: Yeah, today it's considered an "illegal move" placing a plate between two studs! :)

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By in United States,

Nice job with '77, guys!

EDIT: On 373 you can obviously see it's MISB with wrapper. :-)

EDIT #2: I'm guilty of the cheap-out SNOT method. :P But only for fun!

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By in United Kingdom,

I am also guilty of the crude SNOT method...Well, what do you do if you run out of bricks halfway into building a police station?

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