Saturday, March 5, 2022

Video Tutorial: Transformer Dinosaur from LEGO Ninjago 71746: Jungle Dragon (71746_dino)


LEGO set 71746: Jungle Dragon enticed me with its cyan color scheme.  I hope to amass as many of these cyan parts as possible to build G1 Transformers with this color scheme in the future. (Quickswitch perhaps?)

Dragon based LEGO sets offered many ball joints and as usual, I am tempted to give this one a go and build at least one alternate TF from it.  

I'm not particularly fond of the dragon head though... it looks stoned from certain angles.

This is not the first dinosaur TF I built using official LEGO sets. Click here to view the previous ones.


Things started pretty smoothly around December last year, and I think I was 90% done building within a couple of weeks. 

However.... I held off publishing the building instructions due to the sheer amount of work I might need to do this time around (video capture, post production/editing). This is because  this set was one of the bigger*  sets I used to build TF from, and a lot of parts and complexity is involved. 

*most of the official LEGO sets I bought to build Transformers lingered around price point of USD30 or below, with parts count of 300 or lower. This set has more than 500!

So I kept tinkering with the design and found a few structural flaws, especially on the robot knee joints.  It was redesigned to strengthen the joints.

Repeated transformation led to structural failure as well.  So the upper body was redesigned again to strengthen the weak points.

Redesigning from a state of 90% completion usually mean dismantling large portion of whole built, and swap the parts around to be utilized elsewhere/ strengthen other components structurally (like the feet /knees) .  At the same time, hoping that the overall aesthetics of both robot and dino mode will not be negatively affected.

I retained the original set's dragon head, along with his tongue and all coz I'm too lazy to build my own.  

Initially he was  called Greenlock. You'll understand why if you're a Transformers fan!

Glad he's able to maintain a bipedal upright pose, with the strength of mixel ball joints to carry the weight of this whole body.


Despite the complexity of the design , I was surprised  to discover that the transformation steps can be represented in  just a few photos below.

Transformation used to be a risky affair in my initial design. The process of forming the shoulder flanks  might led  the body to collapse. This was what led to me redesign it again, applying brackets to reinforce the sides to keep the frictional joints in place more securely.

Despite the difficulty faced building this guy, I still have a few lucky breaks too.. for example.. the gap at the back of the dino mode allowed for the robot head to be tucked in effortlessly, without me making extra adaptations/design changes.


Yet another Transformer I made with a flat backside ,devoid of any kibble at all.


As I was posing him about for photoshoot.. I can't help but thinking about Mortal Kombat fatality gestures (Come 'ere!!!)


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. 


Left Leg

Right Leg

Dino Tail



If video is not showing above, click here please.

Thank you for following my video tutorial! 


  1. Is it because Greenlock reminds you of 2015 RID Grimlock

  2. I recently built this using the set that was used to make it. However, the knee joints don't seem to be that strong because he leans forward on his knee joints and falls over with the slightest tap. I tried to reinforce the joints so that they're stronger but it didn't work. Any techniques that you recommend to try and make the knees stronger so that he doesn't fall forward on his knees?

    1. You can try put a damper/knee caps to prevent them from bending over forward. I'm not sure there are remaining parts from the set for this purpose or not, since I've dismantled this creation. hmm...


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