The legendary Sopwith Camel, the aircraft flown by World War I aces and one of the most recognizable British aircraft to take to the skies, has been recreated as a LEGO Exclusive model.
The biplane that took on the Red Baron Manfred von Richthofen and his flying circus has been turned into an authentic model with moving parts that captures the Sopwith Camel’s classic looks.
“Getting to design it was a real treat,” says Jamie Berard, lead designer for LEGO Exclusives. “We made a Sopwith Camel in 2001, but that was more of a visual model, beautiful to look at but without any functionality.”
Just like the real plane, the joystick in the cockpit can move the ailerons and elevators using string rather than gears or levers. “The string goes up over the wings and can operate the ailerons on both wings at the same time. It was a real challenge to work on,” says Berard.
The powerful rotary engine that gave the Sopwith Camel its distinct look has also been recreated and features a rotating propeller and rotating engine cylinders.
The model has 883 bricks and includes rare dark green, dark tan and metallic silver elements. It measures over 15 inches long and has a wingspan of over 19 inches.
The scale was carefully chosen to take account of the size of the large, powerful engine that drove the plane and so that the string could function properly with ailerons, Berard noted. “That allowed us to make a bigger wingspan more true to the original aircraft and a wider body that makes it easy to hold as you fly it around,” he said.
The 10226 Sopwith Camel goes on sale June 1. It will cost $99.99 in the U.S.
For more information: Shop.LEGO.com
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