# If Houses (and Alot Of Other) Were Made Of Lego

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### #1 ErlyRisa

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Posted 23 July 2014 - 03:12 AM

What would happen too society if everything was made out of LEGO.

Houses in hurricane season would simply be reassembled , and the concept of ownership would be devalued (people aren't going to care who's bricks are who's)

Would rich people want MORE lego? Does the opensource movment take off when it comes too design, or does copyright law take it's place? Would there be litigation based on stolen/patented designs? Would there be a reliable manner in which you would be rewarded for your creations.

I've seen some pretty nifty Lego creations...non of the kids got paid.

### #2 CraigD

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Posted 27 July 2014 - 03:55 PM

My first thought on reading the OP is that Lego toy building blocks aren’t strong enough to be used to build houses, but after reading about them, I believe they are. A small (about 800 ft2 on 2 stories) such a house was actually built in 2009 - James May’s Lego house

For some neat inside views (it’s full of silly lego replacements of usual household things), see this page.

In this Gizmodo article gives a compression strength failure test for Lego blocks similar to common building materials such as concrete block, so it’s reasonable to conclude that anything you could build using ordinary masonry, you could build using Lego.

The reason there aren’t Lego houses (except for May’s little toy house, which was dismantled only a few weeks after it was completed, after plans to move it to permanent display in a LegoLand theme park were canceled, perhaps due to the cost of disassembly, transport and reassembly, estimated to be about US$100,000) is cost. May’s house, which was built for his “Toy Stories” educational TV show, was effectively zero cost, as the Legos were donated by the manufacturer, and its 7 weeks of labor was done by 1000 unpaid volunteers. Assuming a typical lowest cost for used Legos (about$11/kg), the materials for this little house would cost about $84,000, and at a very low$10/hr, the labor about $2,800,000. Though a factory to assemble the little Legos into larger, hollow blocks might reduce this labor cost a lot, I doubt it beat the cost of ordinary masonry and lumber construction. The ABS plastic Legos are made vary with its market, but is rarely less than$2/kg, so even if you had your own Lego factory that cost nothing to build and operate, the material cost wouldn’t be much reduces. In short, I can’t see that Lego houses could be made for much less than about 10 times the cost of ordinary ones.

Houses in hurricane season would simply be reassembled , and the concept of ownership would be devalued (people aren't going to care who's bricks are who's)

I doubt replacing concrete, wood, and other usual building materials with more expensive ABS plastic would change the economics of material ownership much. Lego’s being worth more than most materials, I expect it would at least slightly increase, not devalue, the “concept of ownership”.

Like most other plastics, ABS is made as a byproduct of hydrocarbon refining, so as oil, coal, and other hydrocarbon reserves become scarcer and more costly to extract, given constant demand, basic economics dictates its cost will increase. If demand increased (which would happen if we started building whole buildings out of it), its cost should increase

Having built more than I wish using salvaged materials, which involved a lot of “cleaning” work, mostly chisel/hammering concrete off of block and brick, and also built a lot of little things with Lego, which didn’t, I wish more stuff was made of Lego. Other than at places like LegoLand and for shows like May’s, though, I doubt this’ll happen much.

### #3 ErlyRisa

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Posted 28 July 2014 - 07:42 AM

Having built more than I wish using salvaged materials, which involved a lot of “cleaning” work, mostly chisel/hammering concrete off of block and brick, and also built a lot of little things with Lego, which didn’t, I wish more stuff was made of Lego. Other than at places like LegoLand and for shows like May’s, though, I doubt this’ll happen much.

I am more bringing the topic of communism and "sameness". For example tilt slab construction, is not very complex. Much like lego once the machinery for creating the slabs is in place, the actual construction of the building isn't too difficult: It's just on a different "scale".

Computer programming has it's similarities...as languages get closer and closer to humanoid language, it becomes easier, much like building with lego: Does this not mean that creativity just becomes similar and bland? Where then is there value in society? Is it in stating that you cleaned/salvage the bricks yourself from some famous persons ex building to build your new house? Is a statement like what I have just made (about salvage/honest clean work) replicable in the programming world? How do we value creativity?

eg. The hand painting vs. The Digital painting? -> Who's buying it? - It would have to be that famous person who's bricks your cleaning.

Which then brings us back into that question of Utopia...why in the hell would I clean the bricks of a person that ate lobster 4 times a week -> To be reminded that I now live in a house I wasted my time on b/c the famous person wouldn't by "MY" art. Who am I building the house for? Would it not be easier to just remove the fame of the famous person...devalue their asset so that I can move into their established home?

ie. It turns out that in the west - the people that go on about communistic freedom, are in effect the people that create hierarchal institutions...of which they only buy and sell amongst themselves: The only time they see people of the "lower order" are when they are needed to clean the bricks.

Is this "my" art? Licking your Bricks Clean?