Wednesday 23 April 2014

nanoblock Award: Build It Your Way Competition

nanoblock fans in the USA, here's your chance to win some cool prizes!

nanoblock®, the world’s smallest building block system from The Ohio Art Company, makers of the famous Etch A Sketch®, invites nano-enthusiasts of all ages to participate in the first-ever national nanoblock® Award: Build It Your Way Competition. Put your imaginations to the test and build your very own unique creations using only nanoblock® bricks. The winner will be crowned TATSUJIN: Master of nanoblock® along a FREE vacation for a family of four and other amazing prizes!

How the nanoblock® Build It Your Way Competition works:

  • Entry Phase: From February 16, 2014 to September 1, 2014, parents/applicants can upload a photo of their original nanoblock® creation in one of two categories, under 500 pieces and over 500 pieces.  There is no limit to the number of submissions per applicant. Submissions are accepted at
  • Judging Phase:  All submissions will be reviewed by a panel of judges consisting of a mixture of toy industry opinion leaders and Ohio Art representatives. The top five finalists will be selected and notified on or around September 15, 2014.
  • Winner Phase: One grand prize-winner will receive a $4,000 travel voucher.  A first and second prize winner will be selected in each category (under 500 pieces and over 500 pieces).  Two first prize winners will receive an iPod nano and nanoblock® sets (one set per month of their choice) for a year.  Two second prize winners will receive nanoblock® sets (one set per month of their choice) for a year.  Winners will be announced, on or around, September 21, 2014 and featured on The Ohio Art website and the official nanoblock® Facebook and Twitter pages.

Thursday 10 April 2014

Christopher Tan nanoblock Exhibition : Malaysia

It's finally happening! My first major nanoblock art exhibition! Please tell all your friends and family okay? ^^ ... Click here for more info.

This exhibition is sponsored by Elite Toys (M) Sdn Bhd and Kinokuniya.

About Christopher Tan

Christopher Tan is an internationally renowned full-time nanoblock brick artist based in Malaysia. His unrelenting passion for popular culture, eccentric art and architecture has been the driving force behind the successful creation of over 200 distinctive designs. The popularity of his nanoblock designs have earned him an amazing cult following across the globe, fuelling a new craze amongst ardent new enthusiasts of all ages. Christopher’s blog is now the most popular nanoblock blog in the world, reaching over 30,000 fans. 

Constantly on the lookout for random inspirations for his next masterpiece, Christopher is now embarking on a series of exhibitions around the world. This exhibition features many of his most popular designs. 

Friday 4 April 2014

Evolution of Photography in nanoblock

Lately, I have been busy rebuilding all my past creations for an upcoming exhibition. Just so happens, some of them are cameras =) ... So here are 3 different generations of photography in nanoblock ... Which generation are you? =P

Thursday 3 April 2014

nanoGauge Basic Full Kit Review - Part 1

Difficulty: Level 3
Time to Complete: 60 minutes
Item Code: nGS_001


nanoGauge is the new motorised train set from Kawada that is based on nanoblock. It is currently only officially released in Japan, so I ordered mine from Plamoya for around USD130 (excluding shipping). The box is huge, so shipping costs a bomb! 

Front of the box
Back of the box


This set comes with everything you need to get started, including the user manual, train build instructions, tracks, motor and bogie units, controller, power supply and of course, nanoblock bricks to build the actual train itself. I will go through all the items in more detail below.

Contents of this set
User manual

The user manual is a single large sheet of paper and it tells you everything you need to know to get your nanoGauge set working, so it's fairly simple to set it up.

AC Power Adapter and Controller

The controller unit allows you to control the running of the train. You can control both the direction and speed of the train. An AC power adapter that uses 100-240v is provided, so it should be supported everywhere. Yes, this thing runs on AC power, not batteries.

Motor and Bogie Units

One motor unit and four bogie units are included in this set. The motor unit drives the train, while bogie units allow you to build the other carriages that are attached to the motor unit. Each carriage would need two bogie units, one in front and one at the back. The bogie units have studs on top, so you just treat it like a brick. The motor unit however does not have any studs. Instead, a really huge brick is provided which you can build your carriage on top and around it, which the motor unit then slots into. 

Track Sections
Bottom of the track sections

There are 8 curved and 4 straight track sections and that is enough for you to build a reasonable sized track. They slide and click into place quite nicely, and each section has two points where you can actually attach nanoblock bricks under and that is also the place where you can attach the cable that connects to your controller. These things can't bend much, so if you want to create a track with portions that are elevated, you will need a very very long track.

Bricks for the train

The train itself is quite simple, but I am sure you already knew that looking at the amount of bricks above. Even though they rated the difficulty at Level 3, I think it is more like a Level 2 at most. What is interesting though, is that Kawada introduced a bunch of new of brick types with nanoGauge. As you can see below, most of them are slated bricks and their purpose is to allow us to build more aerodynamic looking trains.

Some of the new brick types

Part 2 of this review will look into the building of the train and my thoughts about nanoGauge.

Rushing for Exhibitions

That's how my desk looks like right now, as I am rushing to build all my previous creations for some upcoming exhibitions. It looks like a lot of bricks, but it's still not enough to build everything I have ever created ... Hahaha ... My first exhibition will be in Kinokuniya @ KLCC (Malaysia) for the whole month of May ... more details will be posted closer to the date =)

Tuesday 1 April 2014

Just Got My nanoGauge Basic Full Kit

Just my luck, the nanoGauge Basic Full Kit I ordered from Japan (this shop) just arrived, but it got stuck in customs, so I had to spend almost two hours to go collect it, clear customs and bring it back home ... Anyway, here's the set ... Yes, I couldn't wait to get home to open it and snap a pic to show you guys ... Hahahaa ...

Here are a few photos of the nanoGauge Basic Full Kit (nGS_001). It cost me about USD130 (excluding shipping). More photos can be found here.

Some videos for a better look at the nanoGauge: