Lego architects have created some fantastic constructions, but you really have to admire the perseverance and attention to detail of master builder Chairudo (real name Tomáš Kašpařík) from the Czech Republic. His latest creation is a scale replica of the famous El Toro wooden roller coaster at Six Slags Great Adventure in New Jersey.
The coaster was constructed from just under 90,000 individual Legos, and Chairudo estimates that it took him about 800 hours to build. The mammoth replica is more than 21 feet long, four feet wide, and almost five feet tall, with a total track length of 85 feet. It’s so big, Chairudo had to rent a separate room just to construct it.
Aside from the thrill ride, Chairudo surrounded his creation with landscaping and even a merry-go-round for the minifigs to enjoy. The coaster works just like the real thing, with a chain hoist to pull the car up the hill. He used a heat gun to mold the track, and estimates that he spent 50 hours just sculpting the track.
“The biggest problem with a coaster this large is humidity and temperature,” Chairudo told the website All the Moms. “It affects friction between the wheels and the track, so in extremely cold, hot, or humid weather the cart moves at different speed.”
“This can cause it to go too slow and not to make it over the hills, or to go too fast and derail from tracks, which is catastrophic for the passengers,” he added. The coaster, along with several more of Chairudo’s creations, will be on display this month at the Hamleys Toy Store in Prague.
El Toro opened in June 2016 and is considered one of the top 10 wooden roller coasters (or “woodies” to coaster enthusiasts) in the world. It’s 181 feet tall, with an initial drop of 176 feet and a top speed of 70 mph. It’s unique in that it uses prefabricated wooden tracks that are created in a factory, rather than by hand at the site during construction.
If you’d like to compare the Lego experience to the real thing, Theme Park Review has a front-car POV video from El Toro you can enjoy.
Chairudo is a solo artist, and he likes it that way. “Just like most Lego enthusiasts I build alone,” he said. “Everyone has different imagination and if I created it with someone else, it would not look the way I want it to.”