Four weeks of work
Figuring out how to build the bodywork only took Gareth a few days, but the various moving parts were the tricky bit. “To get all the doors to open required a number of changes to the door frame and front window,” says Gareth, adding that this was a departure from the car’s original clean design, but the other alternative was non-opening doors. And he wasn’t going to settle for that. The hardest part, he says, was getting the functional steering and bonnet-opening system right. With the bonnet extending as far as the base of the front window frame, Gareth couldn’t use standard hinges. “In the end, I came up with a mechanism that’s connected to the car’s chassis and allows the bonnet to be lifted and moved forward at the same time,” he says, adding that this solution had to fit under the bonnet along with the steering column, in addition to the engine.
The resulting LEGO brick TREKKA is really detailed. The car has functional steering, openable doors and roof, an openable bonnet and a folding rear bench seat which, when folded away, reveals a hidden storage compartment. The designer even created two variations of the car’s rear design to match the variations that were available in New Zealand in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The set will consist of 1,825 parts and the weight of the assembled model will be over 1.5 kilograms. The dimensions of the model are 34.6 x 18.5 x 19.6 centimetres. It took him a total of four weeks to build the model in the virtual environment of BrickLink Studio. “Now I’m going to do my best and try to actually build the model. But it will probably take a few months before I can buy the necessary parts worldwide,” laughs Gareth.