Top 10 bricks missing from the Lego Architecture Studio

Lego Architecture Studio - the 10 missing bricks

While the Lego Architecture Studio includes a great selection of bricks for creative architectural sketching, I found the selection of bricks is lacking in two main areas: bricks needed for advanced building techniques, and specialty bricks for accents and detail work. Over the course of my Lego Architecture Studio 30-day challenge, I’ve identified the top 10 bricks that were not included in the set but should have been.

I used specialty bricks not included int he Architecture Studio set for many of my challenges.

I used specialty bricks which were not included in the Architecture Studio set for many of my challenges.

Later in this article, I’ll teach you how to buy these bricks to augment your Architecture Studio.

The top 10 missing bricks…

#10 – 1×1 Technic Brick

The Technic 1×1 and 1×2 bricks are very versatile for two reasons. 1) They allow you to attach a normal stud at a 90 degree angle allowing SNOT construction. 2) They have a hollow stud on top which allows you to attach bricks on top with a 1/2 brick offset.

#6541 – Technic, Brick 1 x 1 with Hole
#3700 – Technic, Brick 1 x 2 with Hole

I used a couple of 1×1 bricks to attach the sign to the top of my #17 Art Deco Theatre model.

#9 – Cones

The set includes a nice selection of 1×1 and 2×2 round bricks. I don’t know why they didn’t include some cones to add some nice accents to your models.

#4589b – Cone 1 x 1 with Top Groove
#3942c – Cone 2 x 2 x 2 – Completely Open Stud

I used the 1×1’s for light fixtures on #22 Craftsman home and #20 Castle, and I used the 2×2’s for the lamp in #8 Furniture.

#8 – Flags

Flags make excellent accents to buildings, and they can also be used to represent tapestries or hanging art in your models.

#2335 – Flag 2×2 Square

I used them for wall coverings inside rooms in #28 Living Room and I should have used them to decorate #20 Castle.

#7 – Bars / Antennas

Sometimes you need a slender component when building a detailed or microscale model. I prefer the versatility of the bars which can be inserted into a jumper to use it vertically, or held horizontally with clips.

#3957 – antenna 1×4
#87994 – Bar 3 L
#30374 – Bar 4L

I used these in several models including projects #30 Library, #26 Ski Lodge, #22 craftsman, #11 skyscraper and #8 furniture.

#6 – 2×2 Jumper

Any brick which can allow me an 1/2 brick offset is an immediate winner. The 2×2 jumper allows offset in both directions, replacing the use of three normal 1×2 jumpers. (I also tripled the number of 1×2 jumpers in my collection, as they are extremely useful!)

#87580 – Plate, Modified 2 x 2 with 1 Stud in Center (Jumper)
#3794 – Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with 1 Stud (Jumper)

I used these in most of my projects, notably for light posts in #22 craftsman and to attach the castle to the baseplate in #20 Castle.

#5 – 87087 – 1 x 1 with Stud on 1 Side

The Architecture Studio includes a good number of this brick’s cousins with studs on more sides (4733 or 47905), but I find the simplest version with an outward facing stud on just one side to be the most versatile, because the second stud on the version with studs on 2 sides can get in the way when you don’t need it.

#87087 – Brick, Modified 1 x 1 with Stud on 1 Side
#4070 – Brick, Modified 1 x 1 with Headlight

The Architecture Studio set includes plenty of the more common 4070 Headlight brick (also known as the Erling brick), but I find the 1/5 brick indentation to be unattractive and inconvenient.

I just got these, so I haven’t been able to use them yet!

#4 – Clips 4085 / 6019 / 2555

Clips are necessary to attach slender round components, Minifigure accessories, and can grab the side of plates. (Minifigure hands have the same diameter opening as clips.)

#4081b – Plate, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip
#6019 – Plate, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip Horizontal
#4085d – Plate, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip Vertical
#2555 – Tile, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip

I used these to attach the ski racks in #26 Ski Lodge and to attach the wall-mounted lights in #30 Library. They can be a substitute for a hinge in some instances.

#3 – More Tiles!

Architectural models look a lot cleaner with a smooth surface. I’ve added well over 50 additional white tiles in a variety of sizes to my set, and I still wish that I had more (I especially like the 2×2 and 1×8 plates, and recently ordered a few 1×3 plates to help with odd-width models.)

#63864 – Tile 1 x 3
#4162 – Tile 1 x 8
#3068b – Tile 2×2

Prominent use of tiles included the gate for #20 Castle, the sign and sidewalk in #17 Art Deco Theatre, and were critical for #5 Shed home.

#2 – Hinges

It boggles my mind that the set included so many bricks but absolutely no hinges whatsoever. Each type of hings offers the ability to bend your model in different directions. For example, the 2429/2430 hinge is great to build walls in unorthodox angles, and I have found the 60478/63868 hinge to be incredibly useful for building large peaked roofs using common plates, and the 44301/44302 locking hinges are nice as they click into specific angles for more strength.

#3937 – Hinge Brick 1 x 2 Base
#3938 – Hinge Brick 1 x 2 Top Plate Thin
#44301 – Hinge Plate 1 x 2 Locking with 1 Finger On End
#30383 – Hinge Plate 1 x 2 Locking with 1 Finger On Top
#44302 – Hinge Plate 1 x 2 Locking with 2 Fingers On End
#2429 – Hinge Plate 1 x 4 Swivel Base
#2430 – Hinge Plate 1 x 4 Swivel Top
#63868 – Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with Clip Horizontal on End
#92280 – Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with Clip on Top
#60478 – Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with Handle on End
#3680c02 – Turntable 2 x 2 Plate

Examples of their use include the roofs in #27 Rustic Cabin, #22 Craftsman, #5 Shed home or in the front-facing SNOT facade for #17 Art Deco Theatre.

#1 – Baseplates

Suffice it to say, the set should have at least included a white 16×32 or 32×32 baseplate. I really like using a colored baseplate with these stark white bricks, so you might also want a green or blue baseplate.

#3867 – Baseplate 16 x 16
#3857 – Baseplate 16 x 32
#3811 – Baseplate 32 x 32

Almost all of my projects used at least one baseplate!

Where can I buy specific Lego bricks?

There a couple of ways to buy these crucial “missing bricks” to make your architecture studio more versatile. Before you go any further, I encourage you to make a list of all the parts you would like to acquire and the # of each brick you would like to buy. This will help you decide where to shop.

  • Bricklink is an online marketplace with 1000’s of individual sellers offering Lego bricks for purchase. Think of it as an online hardware store, but instead of selling complete Lego sets, most sellers are selling individual bricks. It is probably your best option if you need to buy a lot of specialty bricks. Unfortunately, no single seller will have everything you need, so you will need to make multiple purchases to get what you want. (Note: Based on my limited experience, you can save by buying used bricks, but confirm their condition before making payment. Also, pay attention to the per-brick cost! Some stores will sell one brick you really need for a great price, then charge too much for other bricks that you need. Take your time and shop around. (Brickowl is the same idea, but has less selection.)
  • Pick-a-brick wall at your nearest Lego Retail Store. Lego stores let you fill a plastic tub with bricks for 17.99$ . This can be a great value, *if* they happen to have exactly the brick you need in exactly the color you want. I haven’t been lucky enough to have my needs match what is on the wall, so I have not done this yet. (wallofbricks.com tries to maintain a current inventory of Pick a brick walls around the world.)
  • Lego’s online pick a brick website has many bricks to choose from, and you are guaranteed that they are brand new. Unfortunately, the selection is much more limited than bricklink, and the prices can be inflated.

How should I sort all these bricks?

I’ve already posted an article describing my portable Lego Architecture studio, so I’m not going to do that again. I did want to mention that I’ve added 4 small Plano boxes with adjustable dividers to organize my small specialty bricks. Each box has a focus: hinges, SNOT connections, Slopes and Trans-clear bricks.

Most of my specialty bricks are now sorted into these boxes.

Most of my specialty bricks are now sorted into these boxes.

The following links might inspire you to organize your collection:

Today’s post is part of my Lego Architecture Studio 30-day Challenge

APPENDIX: My Wishlist

While I’ve already called out the top 10 bricks which are “missing” from the Architecture Studio set, there are many more bricks which may make a valuable addition to your collection. I’ve decided to include the longer list below as it might help you acquire additional bricks which will enhance your creative opportunities.

Color Category Part ID Description # Wanted # Owned/td>
Trans-Clear Bricks 3005 Brick 1 x 1 32
Trans-Clear Bricks 3004 Brick 1 x 2 16
Trans-Clear Panel 4865 Panel 1 x 2 x 1 16 8
Trans-Clear Slope 54200 Slope 30 1 x 1 x 2/3 32 23
White Accents 6046 Bar 9 x 13 Grille 4
White Accents 2921 Brick, Modified 1 x 1 with Handle 16
White Accents 30236 Brick, Modified 1 x 2 with Handle 0 16
White Accents 3900 Minifig, Utensil Signal Paddle 8 3
White Accents 6190 Phone 8
White Accents 49668 Plate, Modified 1 x 1 with Tooth 16 16
White Accents 4623 Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with Arm Up… 12 12
White Accents 32028 Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with Door Rail 16
White Accents 2540 Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with Handle… 16 20
White Accents 33291 Plate, Round 1 x 1 with Flower Edge 16
White Accents 2654 Plate, Round 2 x 2 with Rounded Bottom (Boat Stud) 8 1
White Accents 4599 Tap 1 x 1 12 8
White Accents 2432 Tile, Modified 1 x 2 with Handle 12 4
White Arches 4490 Brick, Arch 1 x 3 6
White Arches 6005 Brick, Arch 1 x 3 x 2 Curved Top 16
White Arches 2339 Brick, Arch 1 x 5 x 4 – Continuous Bow 8
White Arches 30099 Brick, Arch 1 x 5 x 4 Inverted 8
White Arches 6060 Brick, Arch 1 x 6 x 3 1/3 Curved Top 12
White Arches 6191 Brick, Modified 1 x 4 x 1 1/3 No Studs, Curved Top 12
White Bars 4095 6.6 Umbrella 0
White Bars 3957 antenna 1×4 8 12
White Bars 87994 Bar 3 L 16
White Bars 30374 Bar 4L 16 12
White Bars 2335 Flag 2×2 Square 8 8
White Baseplates 3867 Baseplate 16 x 16 1 4
White Baseplates 3857 Baseplate 16 x 32 2
White Baseplates 3811 Baseplate 32 x 32 1 2
White Brackets 99781 Bracket 1 x 2 – 1 x 2 12
White Brackets 44728 Bracket 1 x 2 – 2 x 2 8 8
White Brackets 87087 Brick, Modified 1 x 1 with Stud on 1 Side 12
White Brackets 3794 Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with 1 Stud (Jumper) 32 26
White Brackets 87580 Plate, Modified 2 x 2 with 1 Stud in Center (Jumper) 16
White Bricks 3005 Brick 1 x 1 32
White Bricks 6111 Brick 1 x 10 8 8
White Bricks 6112 Brick 1 x 12 8
White Bricks 2465 Brick 1 x 16 8
White Bricks 3004 Brick 1 x 2 16
White Bricks 3622 Brick 1 x 3 32
White Bricks 3010 Brick 1 x 4 16
White Clips 60476 Brick, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip Horizontal 12
White Clips 30241 Brick, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip Vertical 12
White Clips 30237 Brick, Modified 1 x 2 with Vertical Clip 12 12
White Clips 4081b Plate, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip 12 16
White Clips 6019 Plate, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip Horizontal 16 16
White Clips 4085d Plate, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip Vertical 16 6
White Clips 2555 Tile, Modified 1 x 1 with Clip 12 16
White Curves 11477 Slope, Curved 2 x 1 No Studs 12
White Fences 3633 Fence 1 x 4 x 1 16
White Fences 3185 Fence 1 x 4 x 2 12
White Grille 2877 Brick, Modified 1 x 2 with Grille (Grill) 16 6
White Grille 92947 Brick, Round 2 x 2 with Grille 32
White Hinges 3937 Hinge Brick 1 x 2 Base 12 12
White Hinges 3938 Hinge Brick 1 x 2 Top Plate Thin 12 12
White Hinges 3831 Hinge Brick 1 x 4 Swivel Base 16 12
White Hinges 3830 Hinge Brick 1 x 4 Swivel Top 16 12
White Hinges 44301 Hinge Plate 1 x 2 Locking with 1 Finger On End 12
White Hinges 30383 Hinge Plate 1 x 2 Locking with 1 Finger On Top 12 8
White Hinges 44302 Hinge Plate 1 x 2 Locking with 2 Fingers On End 12 12
White Hinges 4276 Hinge Plate 1 x 2 with 2 Fingers 12
White Hinges 4275 Hinge Plate 1 x 2 with 3 Fingers 12
White Hinges 2429 Hinge Plate 1 x 4 Swivel Base 16 12
White Hinges 2430 Hinge Plate 1 x 4 Swivel Top 16 12
White Hinges 4531 Hinge Tile 1 x 2 1/2 with 2 Fingers on Top 12
White Hinges 63868 Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with Clip Horizontal on End 12 8
White Hinges 92280 Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with Clip on Top 8
White Hinges 60478 Plate, Modified 1 x 2 with Handle on End 12 12
White Hinges 3680c02 Turntable 2 x 2 Plate 12 8
White Levers 4593 Lever Small 8
White Levers 4592 Lever Small Base 8
White Panels 4865 Panel 1 x 2 x 1 24 19
White Pins 2458 Brick, Modified 1 x 2 with Pin 12 12
White plate 3023 Palte 1 x 2 36
White plate 3024 Plate 1 x 1 24
White plate 3623 Plate 1 x 3 24
White plate 3710 Plate 1 x 4 12
White plate 3666 Plate 1 x 6 8
White plate 3030 Plate 4 x 10 8
White plate – wedge 2450 Wedge, Plate 3 x 3 Cut Corner 12 12
White Round 3941 Brick, Round 2 x 2 12 12
White Round 553b Brick, Round 2 x 2 Dome Top… 8 4
White Round 3063 Brick, Round Corner 2 x 2 Macaroni 12
White Round 4589b Cone 1 x 1 with Top Groove 8 12
White Round 3942c Cone 2 x 2 x 2 – Completely Open Stud 8 12
White Round 4740 Dish 2 x 2 Inverted (Radar) 8 6
White Slopes 54200 Slope 30 1 x 1 x 2/3 16 24
White Slopes 85984 Slope 30 1 x 2 x 2/3 16
White Slopes 3300 Slope 33 2 x 2 Double  16
White Slopes 3048 Slope 45 2 x 1 Triple 8
White Slopes 3048 Slope 45 2 x 1 Triple 8
White Slopes 3046a Slope 45 2 x 2 Double Concave 8
White Slopes 3041 Slope 45 2 x 4 Double  16
White Support 3940 Support 2 x 2 x 2 Stand 8 8
White Technic 2444 Plate, Modified 2 x 2 with Pin Hole 12 12
White Technic 6541 Technic, Brick 1 x 1 with Hole 12
White Technic 3700 Technic, Brick 1 x 2 with Hole 12 8
White Tile 3070b Tile 1 x 1  16
White Tile 63864 Tile 1 x 3 12
White Tile 2431 Tile 1 x 4 8 16
White Tile 6636 Tile 1 x 6 16 8
White Tile 4162 Tile 1 x 8 8 12
White Tile 3069b Tile 1×2 16 16
White Tile 3068b Tile 2×2 16 16
White Tile – Round 98138 Tile, Round 1 x 1 16
White Tile – Round 4150 Tile, Round 2 x 2 12 4
Today’s post is part of my Lego Architecture Studio 30-day Challenge

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9 Responses

  1. sharon says:

    Thanks for this. I have bought some extra parts but I need/want loads more. This list is great.

  2. Ivan says:

    Thanks for the list, I found it very very useful (and again will) when ordering some needed parts to expand my Architecture Studio.
    Overall, some nice reading in your blog, thanks for inspiration!

  3. EJ says:

    FYI, the link to the portable architecture studio article repoints back to this page.

  4. Sharon Sgga says:

    Interesting , really thanks for this, I just found your website, searching about Lego architecture estudio, I have one and i was searching for inspiration.

  5. Stephen R Hagan FAIA says:

    Tom

    Do you have an xml or bricklink file of your long list of desired added bricks?

    Thanks

    • Tom Alphin says:

      @Stephen,
      I do not have an XML file at this time. The best way to do this is to make your own wishlist based on the parts you have and the additional parts you want. This is easy to do using the BrickStore app.

      P.S. I did create a downloadable list of the parts you need to buy to build all the models featured in my book, The LEGO Architect. (link: http://brickarchitect.com/book/bricks/ )

  6. Richard Holmes says:

    For anyone looking for the correct link for the portable Lego Architecture Studio article, it’s here: http://tomalphin.com/2013/10/portable-lego-studio.html

  7. Christopher B Clack says:

    Thanks again Tomfor all you do for the Lego community, 3 more Akro-Mills to be delivered today. The wallofbricks link is no longer active. There is ‘Pick A Brick Wall Exchange Group’ on Facebook.

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