Clarkston dad goes to extraordinary lengths for Lego competition

A Scottish civil engineer Michael Dineen with his giant Lego model of the Forth Bridge which measures 4.7m long. (SWNS.COM)
A Scottish civil engineer Michael Dineen with his giant Lego model of the Forth Bridge which measures 4.7m long. (SWNS.COM)

A dedicated dad has built a replica of the iconic Forth Rail Bridge - made out of 3,000 Lego bricks.

Civil engineer, Michael Dineen, 41 from Clarkston went to extraordinary lengths to build the detailed model, which stands 30cm tall and 4.7 metres long.

(Photo: SWNS.COM)

(Photo: SWNS.COM)

The dad-of-one even patiently hand painted 240 pieces of Lego orange to colour match the bridge deck.

Michael, who works full-time, spent three hours working on the project every night for four months, between 9pm and midnight, as it was the only spare time he had.

Michael spent two years working in South Queensferry and seeing the rail bridge every day inspired the South African to take on the ambitious creation.

He now hopes Lego will choose his design, which has a scale of 1 to 352, for a future box set.

Michael stopped counting how much money he spent on the project when it reached £400.

He said: “I work as a civil engineer and I’m at the Forth Road Bridge once or twice a week.

“I wondered if Lego had the Forth Road Bridge as an existing set but they didn’t. It took about four months in total to complete.

“I could only work on it from 9pm until midnight because I have a job and a family.

“The first two months were just trial and error because I had to find out what pieces would work.

“I went through seven different towers and seven different arms. The original bridge has 12 arms so I had to create individual arms which looked identical then replicate that 12 times.

“That took a while. It got a bit frustrating.

“I was keeping track of how much money I was spending on Lego pieces but I stopped counting once I reached the £400 mark. I had to paint 240 pieces orange on the bridge deck because the pieces that I bought only came in white.

“I am not a massive fan of Lego but my interest for it grew while I was building my model of the bridge.

“It helped to be a civil engineer because you could apply basic principles into the Lego design.

“Both sides have to be balanced so it doesn’t fall over.”

Michael, a dad to 19-month-old Jacob, is no stranger to using Lego, having previously recreated the cast of Still Game and the Clansman pub which features in the Scottish sitcom.

His wife Gina, 31, a physiotherapist, has been supportive of the project.

Michael said: “It was very challenging to work on it. Once I got home I would try and spend time with Jacob and once my wife went into bed I’d start working on it in the kitchen. I just have a lot of space there.

“My wife was very supportive and really encouraging.

“My child didn’t even bother touching it when I wasn’t home.

“It was weird and we can’t understand why that’s the case because I thought I would find it destroyed at some points.

“I’m proud to see how it has turned out. Lego has a website where people can vote for your idea.

“I need 10,000 votes to get Lego to take my design seriously.”

To vote for his creation, readers can visit Lego Projects