A engineering whizzkid has become an internet star after he built a working car made out of 500,000 LEGO BRICKS.
Talented Raul Oaida spent 20 months working on the ‘Super Awesome Micro Project’ – a one-of-a-kind masterpiece.
The car, which cost a whopping £75,000, is powered by four orbital engines and a total of 256 pistons which are driven by compressed air.
It is capable of speeds of between 12 and 20mph and emits zero carbon dioxide. The only non-Lego parts are the wheels and some load bearing elements.
Self-taught Raul built everything, including the engine, from scratch and was just 18 when he started.
Raul, now 20, said: “The idea started when I watching a video about Lego and I thought to myself ‘why not build a Lego hotrod?’
“If you are building a spaceship there is 50 years of history and books and it’s similar with engines but nothing on how to build a car from Lego.
“It was one of those projects with so many unknowns.
“The engine, made entirely from Lego, is made up of 100,000 parts. I had to build a workshop to build the car in too. It was quite a process.
“I started the project when I was 18. I have always had an interest in space and rocketry and have no formal engineering education which was an advantage with this.
“Lego is unpredictable to draw so we didn’t use instructions. How do you simulate 500,000 bricks? It is impossible so I just looked at it and built it.
“I am extremely proud of it. I was working very long hours and it was a technical nightmare. Nothing worked the first time but it was an amazing experience.
“It is very scary to drive because of the dangerous things around you.”
The Super Awesome Micro Project was a joint effort by Raul, from Romania, and his Australian friend Steve Sammartino, an entrepreneur and marketing expert.
Last March Steve, from Melbourne, tweeted: “Anyone interested in investing $500-$1000 in a project which is awesome & a world first tweet me. Need about 20 participants… #startup.”
Despite the tweet being vague, there was no shortage of interest and dozens of people came forward to crowdfund the mystery project.
They raised an initial $20,000 (£12k) but ended up needing $120,000 (£75k) – with the Lego costing $60,000 (£36k) alone.
Raul, who lives in Deva, Romania, spent 20 months on the project before the Lego hot rod was shipped to Melbourne, Australia for its official unveiling.
But there was bad news because the car, being made of Lego, had broken during a rough transit to the other side of the world.
Raul said: “We had to spend another two to three weeks putting it back together.
“I want to thank everyone who put their hard-earned cash into the project.
“It is the most unique car in the world, it is 100 per cent handbuilt – a one-of-a-kind car made out of Lego.”
A video of the ‘Super Awesome Micro Project’ in action was uploaded to YouTube earlier this week and it has already been viewed more than 350,000 times.
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