Votes needed to immortalise Gutenberg as Lego character

Jo Francis
Friday, November 26, 2021

Toy giant Lego could make a working model of Gutenberg’s famous printing press if a product idea proposed by a member of its creative community gains enough support.

How Gutenberg's Lego printshop could look
How Gutenberg's Lego printshop could look

The concept for the kit has been proposed by community member ‘Szabomate90’. 

Describing their idea to celebrate Johannes Gutenberg’s pivotal role in the information revolution, they said: “The main goal was to create a playable, functional build of a real invention.

“Also, the original press works with perfectly uniform type moulds, such as Lego bricks. Therefore, I started experimenting with the models' structure, to design it durable, and statically stable in reality to make sure that it can handle the pressure.”

The different elements, and Gutenberg himself (centre)


The proposed model includes three key stages: a letter case table for type elements, the press itself, and a place where prints are dried and put together to make books. 

“You can also rearrange those scenes in the holder, which is also referring to the idea of the movable type,” Szabomate90 explained.

“Once you sort your text, which can be 24 characters long, you can place your letters backwards and upside down onto the press bed part. After you close the upper part of it, and put it into the carriage, you can scroll the crank part, to place the press bed under the platen. Then you can twist the upper angular wheel part to produce pressure, and your print is ready!”

The kit would also include Gutenberg himself in Lego person form. 

The concept was posted earlier this week and received more than 500 votes of support in just three days, meaning that it has passed the first milestone for consideration. 

The Lego team commented: “As a reward, here's a boost of one year (365 days) to reach 1,000 supporters. Best of luck as you continue to rally support for your project.”

The Gutenberg idea was spotted by Printweek contributor Simon Eccles, who said: “These things are designed by enthusiasts and go on votes – if they hit a target within a certain time Lego will explore putting it into production.”

To vote for Gutenberg’s Printing Press and find out more details, visit Lego Ideas. 

Printweek confirmed that if the Lego kit gets the go-ahead it will definitely feature in our annual Christmas Gift Guide. 

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