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Tyler Clites

In February 2023, I had the extraordinary opportunity to use my passion for LEGO with the cutting-edge world of logistics and technology at the Manifest Convention in Las Vegas. This event, a gathering point for all things supply chain and logistics, served as the perfect backdrop for a project that was both a challenge and a delight: creating a DHL-branded version of the Boston Dynamics Stretch robot entirely out of LEGO bricks. This wasn’t just any project but a pioneering endeavor to showcase DHL’s innovation—being the first to utilize Boston Dynamics’ Stretch robot in a warehouse setting.

DHL Boston Dynamics Stretch Lego Sculpture
The Boston Dynamics Stretch Robot Lego structure made by Tyler Clites.

The Challenge: Engineering LEGO to Life

The client’s brief was clear but challenging. They wanted a scale model that represented the Boston Dynamics Stretch robot’s aesthetics and, to some extent, its functionality. The Stretch robot, known for its ability to efficiently unpack shipping containers and trailers, represented a leap in logistics technology. The task was to replicate this marvel in LEGO form, capturing its design’s essence and groundbreaking functionality.

Arm Wrestling with Design

Stretch Robot Design
One of the project’s most significant hurdles was the robotic arm—a key feature of the Stretch robot.

One of the project’s most significant hurdles was the robotic arm—a key feature of the Stretch robot. The arm needed to be both a visual replica and movable and positionable in various poses, echoing the real robot’s versatility. This required going deeper into the LEGO techniques, using largely geared turntables and worm gears to create stable and adjustable joints. Achieving this balance took several iterations, as each adjustment had to maintain the arm’s integrity while allowing for a range of movements.

The Boston Dynamic Stretch Lego Build: A LEGO Odyssey

The project, from initial designs to the final build, took several weeks. It was a journey marked by creativity, technical challenges, and many LEGO bricks.

Huge LEGO Stretch Robot Build Video

Behind the Bricks

The specifics of the LEGO bricks used and the quantity will be detailed later, but it’s safe to say that this project was a massive undertaking. It involved not just standard bricks but a deep dive into the LEGO Technic universe, employing a variety of pieces to achieve the desired functionality and stability. The complexity of the design required meticulous planning and preparation, with several weeks dedicated to design and several more to the actual build. Gluing the model together added another layer of permanence and durability to the sculpture, ensuring it could withstand the hustle and bustle of a busy convention floor.

The Smaller Kits

DHL Boston Dynamics Stretch Lego Sculpture Small Lego Kit
Boston Dynamics Supply Chain Small Lego Kit

In addition to the main attraction, we created small kits of the Stretch robot to hand out at the event. These kits allowed attendees to take a piece of the experience home, fostering a deeper connection with the project and DHL’s innovative step forward in warehouse technology.

The Boston Dynamic Stretch Lego Display: More Than Just LEGO

DHL Boston Dynamics Stretch Lego Sculpture Full display
The final display at the Manifest 2023 with all the other Lego sculptures that I made.

The final display at Manifest 2023 was a comprehensive showcase of DHL’s commitment to innovation in logistics. Alongside the Stretch robot model, we displayed several other sculptures I had created for DHL, creating a cohesive and engaging exhibit that highlighted the synergy between logistics and technology.

Engaging the Audience

The display was not just about showcasing models. It was about creating an interactive experience that drew attendees in and made them a part of the innovation journey. The small Stretch robot kits were a hit, serving as both a souvenir and an educational tool, allowing attendees to engage with the concept hands-on.

Reflections and Takeaways

This project was more than just a building endeavor; it was a bridge between the worlds of play and professional innovation. It showcased LEGO’s versatility as a medium for expression and education and highlighted DHL’s forward-thinking approach to exploring new technologies.

The Power of LEGO in Professional Settings

DHL Booth in the Manifest 2023

Using LEGO to replicate the Stretch robot was a powerful reminder of the universal appeal of building and creativity. It transcended age and professional boundaries, drawing attendees into curiosity and engagement. This project underscored the potential of using creative mediums like LEGO in professional and educational settings, offering a unique way to communicate complex ideas and innovations.

The Joy of Creation

On a personal level, this project was a testament to the joy and satisfaction of bringing an idea to life through LEGO. The challenges encountered along the way only added to the sense of accomplishment when the final piece came together. It was a reminder of the endless possibilities that LEGO offers creators of all ages and backgrounds.

Looking Forward

The success of the LEGO Stretch robot at Manifest 2023 opens up a world of possibilities for future projects. Attendees’ positive reception and engagement demonstrated the value of interactive and creative displays in professional settings. As we look to the future, the intersection of play, creativity, and innovation will continue to be a fertile ground for exploration and engagement.

This project was a milestone in my journey as a LEGO creator. It offered invaluable design, engineering, and storytelling lessons. It vividly reminded me that LEGO bricks are not just toys but powerful tools for communication, education, and innovation. As we continue to push the boundaries of what can be achieved with these humble bricks, I’m excited to see where the journey will take us next.

Making Your Brand Unforgettable with LEGO

I aim to turn simple ideas into unforgettable experiences. My journey with LEGO isn’t just about building models and weaving stories and creating lasting connections. If you want to make your brand the talk of the town, I’m here to bring that extra spark of creativity and engagement. I will be making it through customized LEGO installations.

Tailoring Experiences to Your Brand’s Heartbeat

Every brand has its narrative and vision. We’ll create a masterpiece that aligns with your brand’s objectives. We will harness LEGO’s eye-catching appeal to mesmerize and unite with your audience. Each project is custom-crafted to spotlight your brand’s unique flair.

Interactive Engagements: The Key to Memorable Connections

In today’s fast-paced world, passive observation is no longer enough. My LEGO installations do more than catch the eye. They invite hands-on interaction, creating a personal bond between your brand and its admirers. This active involvement elevates the experience. This enhances brand recall and fostering loyalty in a way that static displays simply can’t match.

Why I’m Your Go-To LEGO Architect for Events?

BostonDynamics DHL Supply Chain Lego Sculpture displayed in Manifest.

With its intrinsic charm of creativity and nostalgia, LEGO offers a novel avenue for marketing. My expertise lies in harnessing this potential to fashion one-of-a-kind experiences that spotlight your brand amidst a sea of competitors. From the drawing board to the final reveal, I ensure every piece tells your story. I also make sure it reaches out to your audience’s hearts.

Ready to Transform Your Brand Experience?

If you’re eager to redefine your marketing with LEGO’s magic, let’s collaborate. Contact me today to work on your next Lego project. We can craft an extraordinary experience that captures the essence of your brand and leaves a lasting impression on your audience. Reach out to start on a project where imagination meets reality, and your brand becomes an unforgettable part of your audience’s story. Let’s create something spectacular.

Diving into the world of LEGO marketing is not merely about standing out. It’s about forging an engaging, memorable, and inspirational journey for your audience. Together, let’s lay the bricks for success.