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PFx Brick Pre-orders are Here

Pre-order the new injection molded PFx Brick; the new standard across all PFx Bricks replacing the 3D printed enclosures used for our production debut.Here are ...

Congratulations OcTRAINber 2019 Winners!

Once again, our good friends at Brick Model Railroader hosted the "OcTRAINber" train building contest. This is such a fun event with so many amazing entries, ...

The New PFx Bricks are Almost Here!

We are really excited to share some exciting news about our new inventory of PFx Bricks! We know you have been waiting patiently for them to arrive and we thank ...

PFx Brick Pre-orders are Here

Pre-order the new injection molded PFx Brick; the new standard across all PFx Bricks replacing the 3D printed enclosures used for our production debut.

Here are some of the new improvements we've made to the new PFx Brick:

  1. Technic Pin Holes - side mounted Technic pin holes allow more robust attachment options for integrating the PFx Brick into Technic models as well as conventional brick built models.
  2. Bottom Anti-Studs - the underside of the enclosure is both functionally and aesthetically more compatible with the Lego system stud / anti-stud connection and now permits some interconnection schemes at half-stud intervals.
  3. Durability - the lid now includes mechanical reinforcement features around the the speaker and IR connector ports to resist excessive bending or twisting forces on the connector. The Power Functions compatible input and output connectors include additional bracing and precision mechanical guidance for the gold-plated pins.

To pre-order your PFx Brick, visit our Store

Congratulations OcTRAINber 2019 Winners!

Once again, our good friends at Brick Model Railroader hosted the "OcTRAINber" train building contest. This is such a fun event with so many amazing entries, so we were pleased to sponsor prizes to support it again. This time, BMR challenged builders to showcase their Technic skills and build a model with interesting mechanical and functional features.

The BMR team recently announced their winners and we were again very impressed with the quality and creativity of all the entries.
We offered 2x prize packages:
1. PFx Brick + XL Speaker Package
2. PFx Brick + M Speaker Package

Here they are!

The winner of the PFx Brick XL Package is Narmot (Chris Stone) for his imaginative cartoon train "Casey Jr." from Dumbo. It's a super cute animated steam locomotive which shifts and wiggles as it moves. It's a truly "living" steam engine with personality and character! We're sure the PFx Brick upgrade will give Casey Jr. a great voice! Great job, Chris!


Our PFx Brick M Package winner is Denis Garnier for his impressive "rolling road" test bench. It is awesome to see someone actually create a rolling road test bench, something we've been meaning to try for a while. Denis' creation has many clever functional details that look like they can be easily adapted for many types of locomotives. The icing on the cake was Denis' superb model of the SNCF 140C steam locomotive used as a "test subject". Well done, Denis!


Congratulations again to all the OcTRAINber 2019 winners! We look forward to getting Chris and Denis their PFx Brick prizes packages delivered to see what they'll create next.


The New PFx Bricks are Almost Here!

We are really excited to share some exciting news about our new inventory of PFx Bricks! We know you have been waiting patiently for them to arrive and we thank you for your understanding.

Initially, our goal was to have them available in December 2019. However, production was delayed because the plastic injection molded brick enclosures were causing mechanical performance issues with the clutch to other LEGO® elements as well as clearance issues with the underside Power Functions connector. We reviewed the issues with our manufacturer and are pleased to report that they are remaking the mold to fix them. The electronics manufacturing for 1000 PFx Bricks is complete and as soon as we sign off on the injection molded brick enclosure, we will re-open the web store for pre-orders in 2 weeks!

To stay in touch and be the first to know about the new and improved PFx Brick, please sign up for our Newsletter here.

New: Injection Molded PFx Brick!

We are super excited after receiving pre-production samples of the new plastic injection-molded PFx Brick enclosures. The new enclosures are molded in a slick two-tone light and dark bluish grey colour scheme and include some awesome new mechanical features. This molded enclosure will be standard across all PFx Bricks and replaces the 3D printed enclosures which served us well for our production debut.

The new enclosures elevate the both the quality and functional performance of the PFx Brick and some of its key features are as follows:

  1. Technic Pin Holes - side mounted Technic pin holes allow more robust attachment options for integrating the PFx Brick into Technic models as well as conventional brick built models.
  2. Bottom Anti-Studs - the underside of the enclosure is both functionally and aesthetically more compatible with the Lego system stud / anti-stud connection and now permits some interconnection schemes at half-stud intervals.
  3. Durability - the lid now includes mechanical reinforcement features around the the speaker and IR connector ports to resist excessive bending or twisting forces on the connector. The Power Functions compatible input and output connectors include additional bracing and precision mechanical guidance for the gold-plated pins.

As always, the enclosure will continue to be secured by 4x stainless steel machine screws for optimal strength, durability, and mechanical precision. Also, all connectors on the PFx Brick use gold-plated electrical contacts for maximum reliability and performance.

Availability?

As of Sep 2019, a production run of 1000 new PFx Bricks has been started by our manufacturing partners in China. This involves the assembly of electronic printed circuit boards and the precision robot-guided insertion of the Power Functions compatible connector electrical pins. These pins are automotive and aerospace grade electrical pins designed for supreme reliability with solder-less contact fastening directly into the PCB.

We expect to receive the assembled electronics in Nov 2019. After we receive the electronics, we then hand assemble the Bluetooth radios (if required for non-IR models) and the high precision lighting dock connector. After each panel of 16x PFx Bricks has finished final assembly, each PFx Brick is electrically tested and its bootloader firmware is installed. Finally, the PFx Brick PCBs are clipped out of the production panel and installed into the new plastic injection molded enclosures. Each PFx Brick then goes through an extensive automated factory test procedure before being packaged and ready for shipment.

Since final assembly and test is relatively quick, we expect to be able to offer rapid shipping turn around on all future PFx Brick orders. Once we have a clearer picture of our production schedule, we will open up our webstore for pre-order of new PFx Bricks. As of Oct 2019, we estimate the schedule will be as follows:

  • Oct 2019 : Electronics assembly / Injection molding starts
  • Nov 2019 : Receive electronics, start final assembly and test. / Receive enclosures / Open store for pre-orders
  • Dec 2019 / Jan 2020 : Start shipping pre-orders / Open store for general orders


Epic Lego Hospital with PFx Brick Bling!

I cannot help but shamelessly plug this epic Lego hospital MOC for not one but two good reasons. First, it includes a PFx Brick powered working elevator and a full light/sound ambulance. But most importantly, it was built by my talented wife (Dr. Lucie Filteau) as a labour of love over the past few years. This epic creation is a faithful representation of the Ottawa Civic Hospital, specifically the original 1924 built structure structure which now forms part of a large expanded campus. It is a workplace which has become a beloved part of Lucie's life over the past 20 years and was a natural inspiration for its recreation in Lego bricks.

The building consists of an architectural facade and side walls partitioned into three sections. Inside, the building contains a framework with integrated lighting (PCB LED strips) on every one of its 4 floors. The framework is an open "substrate" into which detailed interior modules can be inserted. These modules are built to a common standard size and represent individual "vignettes" of a typical hospital environment such as operating rooms, MRI clinic, labour and delivery, etc. as well as common public spaces such as the coffee shop and gift shop. This method of construction, while brick intensive, does offer immense flexibility for reconfiguration and makes each individual clinical module a standalone MOC in its own right. Modules can be conveniently built by themselves without the rest of the hospital's structure in the way.

Recently, CTV national news discovered this project and were eager to feature it. The crew spent a few hours capturing footage of our Lego building studio and getting the story behind Lucie's creation as well as her involvement in the Lego hobby. It also delivers a simple and inspiring message that its never too late to get started in this awesome creative hobby!





More photos can be found on Lucie's flickr page.

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