Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Recommended Book: The Unofficial LEGO Builder’s Guide

The Unofficial LEGO Builder’s Guide


Longtime hobbyist lays firm foundation for building with LEGO elements

The Unofficial LEGO Builder’s Guide by Allan Bedford

Bridging the gap between instructions included with LEGO sets and the unlimited world of freestyle LEGO building, The Unofficial LEGO® Builder’s Guide (No Starch Press, September ’05) is a nuts-and-bolts approach to making original models from those famous plastic bricks. Written by Allan Bedford, a lifelong LEGO fan whose most ambitious model to date is a 5,000-piece replica of Toronto’s famed CN Tower, this new title draws together core techniques, principles and reference information.

Focusing on building actual models with real bricks, The Unofficial LEGO Builder’s Guide includes complete instructions for building several models but also encourages readers to use their imaginations to create their own fantastic designs. While the book incorporates basic engineering and architecture principles, its tone is friendly, light-hearted and geared toward helping readers of all ages get the most fun out of the popular pastime.

Inside The Unofficial LEGO Builder’s Guide, readers will learn:
· The best ways to connect bricks and how best to use those patterns
· Tricks for calculating and building to scale
· How to think and build in 3-D
· Step-by-step plans to create a train station on the scale of LEGO people (a.k.a., “minifigs”)
· How to build spheres, jumbo-sized LEGO bricks and micro-scaled models
· An end-to-end design exercise for creating a mini space shuttle
· Tips for sorting and storing LEGO pieces

The Unofficial LEGO Builder’s Guide also includes the “Brickopedia,” a visual guide to nearly 300 of the most useful and reusable elements of the LEGO system, with historical notes, common uses, part numbers, and the year each piece first appeared in a LEGO set.

“Although age-old, LEGO building seems to be more popular than ever,” said Bill Pollock, founder of No Starch Press. “Allan’s book takes the LEGO building hobby seriously and does a great job of spelling out the fundamentals so that anyone can become a master builder.”

The Unofficial LEGO Builder’s Guide will appeal both to children who are ready for more ambitious projects and adults who are rediscovering the joy of building with LEGO elements – as their own hobby or one to share with their kids.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Allan Bedford is an active member of the online LEGO community, having contributed ideas and discussions for several years. He works as a business analyst by day and spends his spare time cycling, designing board games and, of course, building with LEGO bricks.

The Unofficial LEGO® Builder's Guide by Allan Bedford
September 2005, 376 pp., $24.95, ISBN 1-59327-054-2
Available at fine bookstores everywhere, from www.oreilly.com/nostarch, or directly from No Starch Press (http://www.nostarch.com/, orders@nostarch.com, 800.420.7240).

ABOUT NO STARCH PRESS: Founded in 1994, No Starch Press is one of the few remaining independent computer book publishers. We publish the finest in geek entertainment — unique books on technology, with a focus on Open Source, security, hacking, programming, and alternative operating systems. Our titles have personality, our authors are passionate, and our books tackle topics that people care about. See http://www.nostarch.com/ for more. (And by the way, most No Starch Press books use RepKover, a lay-flat binding that won’t snap shut. Hungry geeks love it.)

Download a sample chapter now chapter.

Buy The Unofficial LEGO Builder’s Guide
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LEGO, the brick configuration and the minifigure are trademarks of the LEGO Group, which is not responsible for this publication. © 2005 The LEGO Group. All rights reserved.