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Akano's Blog


It's A Trap!

Posted by Akano , in Math/Physics Jun 25 2012 · 145 views
Optics, Physics, Laser
A magneto-optical trap. We just got it back up and running again after many days of realigning things (which is quite a pain, but it builds character :P). The image is taken from a TV screen since the collection of atoms shown (the bright, white dot in the center) scatters light very dimly in the near-infrared, so our eyes can't see them, but security cameras can. The collection of atoms in the center is just above absolute zero (-273.15°C) by millionths of a degree. I don't remember off hand what the number of atoms is in the trap, but I'm assuming it's fairly large (~106?).

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Obligatory Korra Finale Entry

Posted by Akano , Jun 23 2012 · 107 views

That...was amazing. I was tense for the whole second episode, which is a good (albeit stressful) thing. Tekulo did good guesswork on Amon. Kudos, bro.


I'm looking forward to some good things.

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Rv B Season 10

Posted by Akano , Jun 19 2012 · 151 views

We're four episodes into the new season of Red vs. Blue, and I still haven't heard Elijah Wood's voice nor seen his character on screen.

Just sayin'.

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Weekend Update: Home From Alaska

Posted by Akano , in Life Jun 17 2012 · 116 views

So, I be back from the untamed lands of the north, and my sleep schedule is messed up. And I have work tomorrow. Fun times.

On the other hand, I saw Legend of Korra yesterday, and OH MY GOSH SEASON FINALE MUST SEE FINAL SHOWDOWN (?) BETWEEN AMON AND KORRA AHH!!!

Also, I got the Mines of Moria LEGO set and have finished building half of it (the cool half with Balin's tomb, the doors, and the well). The rest will wait until tomorrow. I hope to review it (after I review the Vampyre Castle and Gandalf Arrives).

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One More Day In Alaska

Posted by Akano , in Life Jun 14 2012 · 131 views

It's been a good run, state of the north.

I have to say, Anchorage itself may not be a good-looking city (in my eyes, no city really is), but the fact that there are mountains literally surrounding it is awesome. Best horizon ever. Of all time.

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O Hai, Alaska

Posted by Akano , in Life Jun 08 2012 · 189 views
Alaska, Cold, Brr, Astronomy
So, I'm off to Alaska early on Sunday morning for an astronomy conference. KK has already been to the untamed land, so now it's my turn to conquer it with my charm. :)

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Fanboy Moment

Posted by Akano , Jun 07 2012 · 120 views

Rob Paulsen responded to my question I tweeted earlier on whether his voice was in the LEGO City: Undercover trailer.

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While not a definitive answer, it still has made my day. ^_^

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Vampyre Castle & New Comic!

Posted by Akano , in LEGO Jun 03 2012 · 164 views

I got the Vampyre Castle and Gandalf Arrives today at the LEGO store thanks to a handy dandy $20 off coupon along with a mini-scale Sopwith Camel. Today was a good day.

Also, for those of you who aren't aware, I have a new comic up as of yesterday! Head on over to the topic and have a laugh.

Expect a review or two on my new acquisitions in the coming days. 8D

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Legend Of Korra

Posted by Akano , Jun 02 2012 · 116 views

What I'm really awaiting on this show is the episode where Korra and Aang finally communicate about the state of the Avatar world. They've been dropping tantalizing hints these past few episodes, and I'm getting rather antsy. >>

In other news, week 2 of my summer internship is done. I'm going to be repairing a laser-locking box that will be used with a Fabry-Perot cavity. Fun times.

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Set Review: 6493 Flying Time Vessel

Posted by Akano , in LEGO, Set Review May 28 2012 · 225 views

I hope everyone had an enjoyable, reflective Memorial Day today. Since I couldn't come up with a comic, I decided to work on another retro set review. This time, we switch gears back to the Time Cruisers with the 6493 Flying Time Vessel!

From the design of the box to the instruction manual, these are the first things you see before building the set.

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I just love the backgrounds for Time Cruisers and Time Twisters. They're so trippy and cartoony yet so dark and spooky. The castle and pirate ship in the background add a nice touch to the scenery and really help reinforce the idea that this theme was about visiting various periods in history. We also see Dr. Cyber and Timmy showing off various helmets and artifacts they've received throughout their travels, and the monkey, Ingo, is sporting a flintlock pistol. Isn't it dangerous to give firearms to a monkey?

Half the fun is had building the set. How fun is it to build and how easy or challenging is it?

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This set contains 234 pieces, and while there are large pieces like the bow and the stern, it still took me at least an hour to build, but the inner workings of the gears and axles for the functionality in this set were fun to construct. Because of this, the construction isn't straightforward, but it isn't incredibly difficult either; it just takes some time.

Set Design
Now that the set is complete, we can critique how it looks from every angle. New or interesting pieces can also be examined here.

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The vessel is, obviously, built on the bow and stern pieces that come in the set. Interestingly, these pieces seem to be unique to this set! The Pirate sets from the late 80s/early 90s had bow and stern pieces, yes, but they were not of the same dimensions as those that appear here. I find that kind of odd, but cool. Also, this set is quite large and takes up a lot of space, partially because of the mast and partially because of the wings. The rudder/propeller system doesn't help either, since there's a large peg on which the small propeller sits.

This set comes with three figures: Dr. Cyber, Timmy, and Ingo the monkey, which is one short of the entire Time Cruisers cast.

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I, the hard working Ingo, do not approve of my new simian form!

It also comes with several accessories, including a pirate hat and bandana, various helmets from other LEGO themes, a flintlock pistol, two crossbows, a magic wand, and a chainsaw. Because those things always go together. :P

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Cower before my miscellany!

Needless to say, this set has a lot of good parts to plunder.

The other half of the fun is in playing with the set. How well does the set function and is it enjoyable to play with?

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There's a Titanic reference here somewhere…

Like the other Time Cruisers/Twisters sets, this set does not disappoint on functionality. The wheels are connected by bars to the underside of the wings to make them flap up and down and are also connected internally to the axle that drives the rear propeller. The cockpit also opens up via hinge revealing a treasure chest and the control panel to the ship (which, interestingly enough, no one is operating in any photos of the set. Perhaps it's on autopilot?).

However, it's the look of the ship that really hooks me in. It's a pirate ship with wings and a periscope that is fueled by the spinning of a propeller hooked onto the stern. And also has wheels. That's just awesome! It's a vehicle that can practically go anywhere — swamp, mountain, ocean, canyon, and other locales that aren't in Majora's Mask. Bottom line: this set tickles the imagination and gives a lot of good opportunity to create your own Time Cruisers adventure, and that's why it's probably my favorite set of from the line.

Final Thoughts
Once it's all said and done, how does the set stack up? Should I get it?

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Hold onto your helmets; time travel can be rough.

I love this set. It's a creative concept for a creative theme, and I wish they had done more sets like this. Not that the other Time Cruisers sets were bad, but they didn't quite stand out to me as much as this one. This vehicle can go on any journey anywhere, anywhen, giving the player nearly infinite possibilities as to where to send these characters, and that's pretty cool. Also, it has a plethora of cool pieces.

On BrickLink, you can find lots with this set at around $20 in Europe and around $30 in the US, which is not bad at all considering the original MSRP was $44 in 1996. If you have the cash, definitely consider this one, as it's a classic.

What's to like?
  • Functionality (again)!
  • Great pieces
  • Looks awesome
  • Not terribly expensive
What's not to like?
  • There aren't more like it in this theme.
If you were to get only one Time Cruisers set, I'd say get this one. It's a very imaginative set for an imaginative theme.

Now, I only have two more sets to do from the Time Cruisers/Twisters themes, so soon I will be moving on to some other LEGO theme from the 90s. Does anyone have any suggestions/a particular theme they would like to see? I could do Fright Knights, UFO, Adventurers (hecks yes), Insectoids, and others that I have with me but can't think of off the top of my head. Suggest away!

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Oak Log Bans

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About Me

Akano Toa of Electricity
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Premier Members
Stone Champion Nuva
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1,500+ posts
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+2 for Premier Membership
+1 from Pohuaki for reporting various things in Artwork

Name: Akano
Real Name: Forever Shrouded in Mystery :P
Age: 27
Gender: Male
Likes: Science, Math, LEGO, Bionicle, Ponies, Comics, Yellow, Voice Acting
Notable Facts: One of the few Comic Veterans still around
Has been a LEGO fan since ~1996
Bionicle fan from the beginning
Misses the 90's. A lot.
Twitter: @akanotoe

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My Lovely Topics

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Hieroglyphs And The Like

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