This is arguably my favorite alternate creation from official LEGO sets so far! This is because it ticks all the boxes...!
- It has 2 solid alternate modes. (aka Triple changer)
- I love base-formers (Transformer that turns into a base especially those with ramps)
- It's a perfect homage to Metroplex.... one of the biggest Transformer toy from G1 Transformers cartoon series. (below)
I actually built two Metroplexes before using various LEGO parts I owned, and below is the more recent one made few years back:
Click here if video is not showing above
ABOUT THIS PROJECT
This is my 3rd attempt using LEGO Creator 31115 (click here to view earlier ones). My most recent one, a Transformer Bulldozer was not very refined. So it's fated that he won't stay long on my display shelf.
The idea to build Metroplex this time around was purely experimental. I was not sure I can pull this off initially with the limited parts from set 31115, since Metroplex has many hinged panels. But the motivation that made me proceed was the core transformation between modes were simple.
MOBILE BATTLE STATION
The original Metroplex has Sixgun, one of his minion that helps to weaponize his battle station mode with six guns literally. My version here is a loner , but he's still armed with missile racks, and cannons on both sides of the vehicle.
Comparison with original character art of G1 Metroplex with six guns mounted.
Look closer underneath the vehicle and you'll see on each side, there are 2 fake wheels at the back, one at the middle and finally, a tiny one at the front.
Ramps lowered to welcome guests and passengers onboard.
TRANSFORM TO BASE!
The left chest unfolded to reveal the helipad/landing pad. Honestly, if I failed to design this feature.. I'd probably scrapped the project altogether.
BASE (aka AUTOBOT CITY) MODE
I tried hard to make the panels on each leg to unfold 180 degrees (like the original Metroplex toy and character art above) , but failed. They're about 10 degrees off the mark here.t.
The weakest link of all goes to the dark gray c-clip connection on the leg panel (above). I tried to minimize its tendency to pop out when folding/unfolding by reinforcing the clip with dark blue plate and claw on its side.
I would love to have a matrix of 4 x 2 alternating colored missiles on the missile rack, but set 31115 only provided with me 3 of each (including spares).
TRANSFORM TO ROBOT!
From base mode...transformation to robot mode is pretty straightforward and simple.
And finally..... stand him up...
Getting to this final design of the robot head took me many hours of trial and error. Aside from looking like a head, it cannot be too big and disrupt the transformations.
The upper body is really, really complicated to build. It's a mish mash of various colored parts I wish to conceal inside, since they're not appealing at all to form the exterior.
Comparison with character art of Metroplex in robot mode. Mine is obviously leaner
Due to the massive upper body plus flat feet, a lot of the elaborate poses were not as stable as I hoped.
Thanks to the hinged ramps on the side of his legs.. I can adjust their positions to further stabilize him.
The final finishing touch to this creation was applying the claws on his butt to make it fatter.
Building Instructions in the form of a video tutorial , is located at the bottom of this page.
Before you get started, please sort your parts according to the photos below.
PROBLEM BUILDING THE BODY?
Here's a lifesaver photo of few components that made up the upper body, in 2 angles. Hope this helps!