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The Batcave/Wayne Manor at Brickworld 2010
Stately Wayne Manor and the Batcave traveled to Wheeling, IL for it's first public display at BrickWorld 2010.
About this creation
After anonymously visiting BrickWorld last year, and talking to Chris Phipson and Dennis Price about it online, I decided to take the plunge this year and bring out the creation I have been working on since 2005.

The first step was improvements. I had already added a sublevel to the cave, because I just couldn't hold all the stuff I needed on one level. The goal now was to match my current level of building skill to the existing structure.

Let's start with the Manor itself:






Steve Witt and I talked comic books for almost a half hour. This picture also gives you some idea of scale.

The main focus of the rebuild was to add depth and texture to the facade. Tiling was added from the base all the way up to the top along the sections that were already protruding. The windows also went through major revisions as panes of glass were added to all the windows and the window treatment was also redone to eliminate the protruding studs. Balconies were redone with black fence elements to give the impression of ironwork and most studs were eliminated on the exterior stairs. The flower beds were completely redesigned to echo the new facade. The roof (which you can't really see) had a few tiles and grills added to tighten up the appearance and the chimneys were tweaked. The door and stone section around the door had a few changes to help solidify and unify the design changes. As I was making these changes, I did my best to take out any old gray and replace it with bley, but I missed many spots. I know a lot of builders like to have exposed studs, but for the most part, I did my best to eliminate what I could.

On to the cave:

Most of the cave was built with black, even the gangways. One major project was replacing all the black gangways with bley or dark bley. I used opposing bley grills to add depth to these elements. The other major revision was to find a way to make this easier to keep dust free. The dust and dirt is really hard to get off black plates after five years. My solution was 1x1 black tiles and black cheese wedges. The tiles were placed to indicate the paths that Bruce and Co. walk on and the wedges create a cave-like texture to indicate the less traversed paths. I also added about 300 bats to the exterior of the columns on the upper level; man, that's a lot of bats! I was still working on the cave details all day Tuesday.




It's hard to tell what's going on in the cave, so here's a guided tour:


The upper left section houses the armory with Bruce's suits and gadgets.




The spinning Batmobile carousel and most of the cars are in this section.




Nightwing's bike and the Batpod can exit the cave from this level.




The computer in the center section is based on Jim Lee's designs from the Hush story line.




The upper right of the cave is packed with the stairway from the manor's library, Jason Todd's Robin suit, the Bat-mircoscope, and the Hall of Trophies in the back. There's also a hot tub and power generator hiding back there somewhere.




Bruce's gym is built around one of the eight major columns that support the structure of the manor.




This elevator, located in the center under the Batcomputer, gets you down to the lower level (when Harley and Mr. J aren't occupying it).



The lower left cave section has waterfall that flows into the underground river, the robot t-rex from dinosaur island, and the Batmobile/tank from Frank Miller's The Dark Knight Returns. And for everyone that asked, yes, Batman DOES have a dinosaur in the cave! I also have the giant penny in the trophy area. There was a ten year old girl who asked where the giant Joker card was, my answer, I didn't have enough purple.





The lower right section of the cave continues the underground river, has a three sided computer station, and has docking and repair points for the Batwing (pictured) and Batboat.




The next challenge was transportation:

The model was built modular, mostly so that I could move the different levels around my tiny apartment. Little known fact: the base of the cave is build to the exact dimensions of my entertainment cart. When I started, I knew it would have to be a vertical build if I wanted to keep it together for a long time. The entire model spits down the middle, the manor breaks into ten sections while the cave is four. I bought seven 110 gallon Sterilite containers and was able to wrap the sections in bubble wrap for the trip from Hyde Park (south side of Chicago). The top two sections of the cave were way to big for any container, and they needed the most reassembly. I only took me 1.5 hours to pack everything up Thursday morning and 2 hours to reassemble when we set up (not bad at all!). I barely fit everything into the RAV 4, but I just made it.




My favorite part of set-up was adding the minifigures. My friend Dylan saw Catwoman's bike and said it looked like Prince's. We quickly made a Prince and Apolonia from Purple Rain to be added to the action. Thanks to Dylan, Matt, Frank and Muneeb from coming out to see me at BrickWorld.





I was honored to be nominated for best mega creation at BrickWorld. All the models I was up against were amazing, and I was very proud to be among that group. This is going in the Batcave's Hall of Trophies.

What's next:

I don't think this project is ever going to end. I plan on creating an opening panel system to incorporate the new LED lights I purchased. This will start in the manor so that it will be easier to see the interior decoration. Of course I need to work on that giant Joker card and look at Watson K-13's Batmobiles for inspiration to build a few more of my own (unless Sir Nadroj wants to take me up on my offer and build some for me). I need to work on creating some sections that can be more easily detached for transportation purposes (like the front and rear stairs). I also plan on completely gutting and redoing the interior. I need to make it look like it's owned by the richest guy in town. So, I guess I have a lot of work ahead of me before June 2011.


I'd really like to thank all the builders and friends I finally met in person at BrickWorld: Chris Phipson, Dennis Price (and family), Mark Kelso, Dave Sterling (who convinced me to buy and add lights Saturday night), Stacy Sterling, George Kemper, Heath Flor, Amber Flor, Lee Jones (and family), Anthony Dunne, Dave Xandegar, Johnny Xandegar, Heather Braaten, Alex Eylar, Nannan Z., Tyler Cities, Jordan Schwartz, Alex Schwartz, Kyle Vrieze, Mark Stafford (who lent me the light brick for the waterfall; thanks Mark), Josh (I Scream Clone), and Mike (Cop Mike), Bryan (Eggy Pop), Keith Goldman, and all the others who I'm forgetting. I never could have done this without your influence and support. Thanks to everyone who came up to me and gave me compliments on the build, just being together in the same space and sharing our creations meant so much to me. I'd also like to thank the MOCpages community for all the inspiration you've given me over the years of this build. I NEVER would be the builder I am today if it wasn't for the builds and ideas I've seen from you, thank you.




P.S. I know some of you may be getting annoyed at all the posts from my summer school Lego class. I'm trying to teach these kids to be better builders and bloggers, so thank you for your patience in seeing 10 posts a day from my account. They've gotten so much better in one week, I can't wait to see what they're building by the end of the summer!



Comments

 I like it 
  August 23, 2014
Holy Mother of MOCs, Batman! I have heard tell that you'd created the best LEGO Batcave ever. I must say that the rumors were grossly understated. That stuff is pure awesome. The best. Batcave. Ever.
  March 1, 2014
dude your work is awsome you are like my hero or some kinda where did you learn how to construct some things like that.
 I like it 
  August 15, 2013
More than epic...
 I like it 
  August 14, 2013
Absolutely magnificent!
 I like it 
  July 5, 2013
Bravo! A true masterpiece. I am particularly in awe of the tyrannosaurus you built. I have been wanting to do something similar with my Batcave. Would it be possible to get any suggestions or even instructions to building the T-Rex? It would be greatly appreciated! david.machado.80@gmail.com
 I like it 
  July 2, 2013
The Wayne Manor in fantastic!! The batcave is awesome but for me is too complicated and complex. If i look it i don't understand anything. And where are the rocks? Is it a cave or not? For me the Comic's Batcave is another thing. But your bat-cave is fantastic anyway...
 I like it 
  June 30, 2013
This is totally awesome! That is a well deserved award. Best batcave/wayne manor I've every seen .
 I like it 
  June 19, 2013
I saw this! I was in awe the whole time! Excellent job! Amazing!
 I like it 
  August 3, 2012
Did this every collapse while you were building? AWESOME! PROBABLY ONE OF THE GREATEST CREATIONS TO DATE! A little messy, but still AWESOME!!!!!
 I like it 
  July 12, 2012
The best bat-cave I have even seen!GOOD JOB!
 I like it 
  July 12, 2012
Oh my! Bravo for the award! As for comics I too love comics, in fact I draw them as well. You mentioned The Dark Knight Returns. I am not a Batman fan but that comic is magnificent. Your creation definitely fits the whole Batman look and feel! Is there a chance MOC pages had a bigger grading scale than 5? ;))
 I like it 
  July 9, 2012
Dave I liked your lego works ever since You started teaching me a lab.
  July 9, 2012
Dave I liked your lego works ever since You started teaching me a lab.I was Blob at the class.
 I like it 
  May 11, 2012
Brilliant! My fav parts are the garage and the gym. Great stuff!
 I like it 
  April 2, 2012
To mention a previous comment, would you prefer this or the lego version...I'm gana go with this version, which is great...there are so many parts and peices...so many details and minifigs and vehicles just make this an excellent creation...if only lego produced sets like this...but then builders such as yourself would have no fun so I suppose it all evens out
 I like it 
  January 5, 2012
So I guess you won't be buying the official LEGO version ;) That's a great build, the contrast between above ground and below ground make for real eye candy!
 I like it 
  December 2, 2011
Mind-blowing. I want one XD
 I like it 
  November 14, 2011
It'd be amazing to see this and Mr Xenographer's daily planet together. :D
 I like it 
  September 16, 2011
I am AWESTRUCK! BATMAN needs a hot tub to relax and relax his muscles after a big fight! Loved the TOY STORY rex!
 I like it 
  September 4, 2011
I'm not a big fan of Batman,but this is AWESOME!!This was issued in one of the brickmaster magazines I think.
 I like it 
  September 4, 2011
Wow, this is very nice and so detailed!!!
 I like it 
  August 30, 2011
EPIC! best batman creation EVER! I love all the detail you put in this, it is indescribable. Just wondering, why does Batman need a hot tub?
 I like it 
  August 18, 2011
Amazing!
 I like it 
  June 28, 2011
YOU GUYS ARE AWESOMMMMME!!!!!
 I like it 
  June 27, 2011
This is epic! I am biased however, Batman being the greatest superhero and all.
 I like it 
  June 22, 2011
I saw you're creation in a Lego club magazine in 2009, and now that I see it in depth I know how amazing it is. Great build!
 I like it 
  June 22, 2011
AMAZING!
 I like it 
  June 7, 2011
Epic doesn't begin to describe this...
Dave Kaleta
 I like it 
MaybeTomorrow ( ;-p)
  May 28, 2011
Love It!!!!
 I like it 
  May 7, 2011
wow that's heavy. you should make the new batcave under the storage contaner. that would be cool too
 I like it 
  March 21, 2011
WOW!!!! That has more pieces than my whole collection O.O Awesome!
 I like it 
  March 18, 2011
WOWOWOWOWOWOWOWOWOW!!!!!
Dave Kaleta
 I like it 
Matrix Revisited
  March 4, 2011
AWESOME, just one suggestion. There was so much activity it looked like you made it crowded, maybe you should expand a little, but even though, I could never pull of that!
 I like it 
  March 4, 2011
Batcave with dinosaurs?! THE PROPHECY WAS REAL! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!!
 I like it 
  February 5, 2011
I love this manor!!!Great detail ..what diligence!!!
 I like it 
  January 22, 2011
The level of detail is incredible.
 I like it 
  December 21, 2010
this is amazing...so you live in chicago :)
 I like it 
  December 21, 2010
This is so awesome! So showing my little brother this :)~Quinn
 I like it 
  December 19, 2010
This is crazy great. Nice profile pick btw
 I like it 
  December 9, 2010
Incredible! spectacular! amazing!
 I like it 
  October 25, 2010
WOW, wonder how many kids would be dieing to have this
 I like it 
  October 18, 2010
This is one of the most amazing builds I have ever seen. Fantastic work here!
  October 11, 2010
Maybe you could add a batgirl fig and make the cave less crowded by expanding as well as making wayne manor a bit bigger? apart from that its really really really really really really really really really really really really AWESOME! A-W-E-S-O-M-E aw3s0me orsom .- .-- . ... --- -- .(AWESOME IN MOSE CODE) aaaaawwwwweeeeesssssooooommmmmeeeee!!!!!
 I like it 
  October 8, 2010
That it epic - please keep us up to date with the modifications.
 I like it 
  September 26, 2010
To good to describe with words.
  September 15, 2010
I was at Brickworld and by far this was my favorite creation. Simply awe-inspiring! BTW, I noticed Prince and Appolonia at the booth and pointed it out to you! Fantastic job.
 I like it 
  September 5, 2010
Each time I think I've seen it all, I find something that blows my mind. This is a absolute great build. Incredible. Congratulations.
 I like it 
  August 22, 2010
I saw this in the Lego magazine and can't believe you didn't win. This is AWESOME!
 I like it 
  August 20, 2010
That is the biggest house/manor/cave Ive ever seen!You make all these fancy builders to think again!
Dave Kaleta
 I like it 
Pony Lord7
  August 19, 2010
This was more than awsome to see in person. But Im also wondering if you we could get a few more up close shots of it along with a few of the bat pod. BTW how tall is it?
 I like it 
  August 11, 2010
That is just plain epic!!! My jaw just hit the ground!
 I like it 
  July 10, 2010
Amazingly epic. This thing is fabulous, and nothing can comprehend just how great you've put it together. If you're gonna add more to it, I won't be able to wait because I know you will make it even better and better. Great work.
 I like it 
  July 1, 2010
Wow Dave! Even from you, this is incredible!
 I like it 
  July 1, 2010
Wow Dave! Even from you, this is incredible!
 I like it 
  July 1, 2010
Tremendous work mate! love it!
 I like it 
  July 1, 2010
Great It left me WHIT NO WORD TO SAY BUT GREAT.
 I like it 
  July 1, 2010
Great It left me WHIT NO WORD TO SAY BUT GREAT.
 I like it 
  June 29, 2010
There is not a rating high enough, this thing is so massive, and intracately detailed that it is perfect!
 I like it 
  June 29, 2010
very impressive, nice batcave
 I like it 
  June 29, 2010
Awesome
 I like it 
  June 28, 2010
even though it s clear we have to see it to appreciate it or believe it! it s very impressive! and i can understand your motivation and inspiration for batman! as if given the chance,i d buy all the villains and props around it! it s just too bad they don t sell it anymore! i d love to make myself a batcar,bat plane ect. it s cool that you take it to this level! gotham city is a challenge for pros! and batman kits fit well in almost any city! i m glad your talent and taste are recognized! as your patience and perseverence! keep at it as you already achieved a masterpiece! and that s your treasure to cherish! it s wonderful to have something like that in your home! a lot of people would like that in their living room,since it s truly a work of arts! i know i would! it s amazing!
 I like it 
  June 28, 2010
omg
 I like it 
  June 27, 2010
This is just amazing... it's one of those creations you see and go: "Man, I wish I could see that in person!" It needs multiple looks to glean every detail you've included.
  June 27, 2010
I saw this while i was there! I sort of met you, but i wont pressure you to remember. Nice work. P.S. For all who didnt go, this is WAY cooler in person, even though im not a fan of batman.
 I like it 
  June 26, 2010
Wow!
 I like it 
  June 26, 2010
Looks like you guys had a lot of fun at brickworld. I've been in awe of your manor and now I am again in awe by it. I think your tour is really necessary to appreciate all the details in the photos. Stellar job!
 I like it 
  June 26, 2010
Awesome!
 I like it 
  June 26, 2010
Yeah I remember seeing that!
 I made it 
  June 26, 2010
Quoting Andrew Somers You entered an earlier version of this into the Lego magazine Batman contest several years back, I believe. Shocked and awed back then, and still am now. Shame you didn't win the grand prize though. Never-the-less, nothing short of incredible-ness here.
Yes, it was submitted to that contest. I had just taken the pictures and they announced the contest, so on a whim, I submitted a photo. When the magazine came out, one of the students at my school brought it to my class and asked for an autograph; it was really cute. Interesting side note: I was really happy to receive the Lego Batman sets as prizes as my new puppy had chewed up parts or all of the EXACT sets they sent me; thank you Lego!
 I like it 
  June 26, 2010
Wow, that is astounding. I especially like the batmobile carousel. I always want to go to brickworld, but Alabama is pretty far away from all of the locations, and I am a teen, so I can not just hop a plane. Oh well, this build makes it all okay.
 I like it 
  June 26, 2010
While most of us bounce around from one build to another, it's amazing to see what prolonged focus on one MOC can accomplish. This is nothing short of jaw-dropping, and it's going to take many more face-to-face weekends of observation to appreciate even half of the detail you've put into this stunner. Killer work, Dave! Here's hoping you'll bring it again next year with access to the interior (hint, hint!).
 I like it 
  June 26, 2010
one super inpressive creation,,,,and soo super details,,,bravo
 I like it 
  June 26, 2010
You entered an earlier version of this into the Lego magazine Batman contest several years back, I believe. Shocked and awed back then, and still am now. Shame you didn't win the grand prize though. Never-the-less, nothing short of incredible-ness here.
Dave Kaleta
 I like it 
Dave and John Xandegar
  June 25, 2010
As we've said before...if you could see this baby in the flesh, it would blow you away!! Dave, you SO deserved to win for this...it's a labor of love, and executed masterfully. John and I are honored to be your new Friends, and at your interest in attending our Octobrickfest 2010 "Mini-Con". We advise everyone to look at each and every one of these photos thoroughly-there's THAT much to see. It's positively awrsome!
 I made it 
  June 25, 2010
Quoting Eggy Pop Yup, well deserved win. This thing is amazing. 5 yrs well worth it. My favorite is the dinosaur. Really like the dual level shark teeth it has.
Argh, I left Bryan out, I'm sorry. It was amazing meeting you. Another thanks for inspiring that white space thingy, and your castles are ever astounding, I showed many of them to my Lego class.
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
Yup, well deserved win. This thing is amazing. 5 yrs well worth it. My favorite is the dinosaur. Really like the dual level shark teeth it has.
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
Words cannot describe the levels of awesome you have just superceded. Bravo!
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
This is pretty dang amazing. Excellent job, wish I had seen it in person!
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
We have a true winner! It looks so massive and colossal and it is freakin' awesome! Brickworld! Yeah!
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
Wow...congrats on such a fantastic win! This is definitely one of those "must-see" creations since it's utter brilliance. Great work! -Dylan
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
My favorite Batman loving teacher need not apologize for anything! Except maybe for the lack of interior shots of the Manor itself...I never tire of looking at this glorious monstrosity. Congrats on the award.~H
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
Considering I was in the general vicinity of this model for four days and spent quite a bit of time looking at it, I know one thing: I needed another four days to see everything. For instance, I never noticed the Batwing in the hanger! Everyone was blown away by the detail, but when they learned the interior was finished they were speechless. This is most excellent and well deserving of the trophy!
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
You TRULY deserved the win for this my friend! And, aside from being punked out by a 10 year old girl, it was a perfect weekend! HAHAHA You are truly an artist my friend and inspire all of us to want to achieve this level of coolness! Dave, you ROCK! ~ Chris.
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
Wow amazing, I first saw this on Chris Phipson's brickworld post, but I'm amazed to find out you've been working on this for 5 years. You have great patience on sticking with the same build for so long I envy you. Well can't wait to see the improvements you make for next year. 5/5 :)
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
This is GENIOUS on so many different levels! I see why you won your award. Awesome work, man!
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
Finally a page I can comment on! Please extend my appreciation to your students, they're very good!
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
Congrats on the award. Your BatCave is one of my favorite creations on MOCPages and I'm really happy that it was recoginzed. And I wish my teachers would of let me build with legos in school. It's great thing your doing with the kids.
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
The tour have tremendously upped the epicness of this build! Wow! That's a freakin' load of details! Congrats to your award!
 I like it 
  June 25, 2010
Fantastic build! The level of detail is amazing.
 
By Dave Kaleta
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