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6494-1: Magic Mountain Time Lab
Published 10 months ago
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The build is 98% accurate; besides one functional part #6032 missing, the rest are mostly accessories and decorations. I also had to replace Dragon Knight and Aquazone helmets (that are absent) with similar-looking headwear.





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"Time Cruisers," which debuted in 1996, was a curious and pretty unique Lego "meta" theme—combining bricks and elements from every series and era imaginable: from medieval "Castle" to "Pirates," from underwater "Aquazone" to the depths of outer "Space."

The design was very eclectic and quirky, to say the least! And such excellent storytelling: naming every character from the getgo, with unusually detailed backstory, the mechanics of time travel and various design elements explained in the catalog, etc.

The story unfolds in the year 2025. Dr. Cyber discovered time travel while studying a mysterious ancient map. He builds a new home and laboratory out in the wilderness, The Flybo, to explore the past and present. Accompanying Dr. Cyber are his teammates: the loyal apprentice and follower Timmy, a "typical time-traveling robot" Wacco (Dr. Cyber's first invention), and a lazy monkey Ingo.

Yes, the parallels between Tim's character and Marty McFly from 'Back to the Future' (and all the traits that Dr. Cyber shares with Emmett "Doc" Brown too) are crystal-clear. But it's an homage rather than a rip-off since Lego designers came up with some pretty innovative ideas for Time Cruisers.

Dr. Cyber and his friends would first put on helmets from the desired "time zone" they wished to visit (helmets work as amulets, or time compasses of sorts to point Time Cruisers in the right direction). Then they would carefully crank the spinner wheel (with hypnotizing red spiral print) and stir the time-space continuum. Weapons and tools from different Lego eras help Time Cruisers blend in and interact with locals upon arrival.

This set no. 6494 'Magic Mountain Time Lab,' also known as 'Time Cruiser Flybo 2025,' came out in 1996, and it was the largest of four "Time Cruisers" models, with over 500 parts and four minifigures.

The Flybo's design is fantastic: a tri-fold modular building that looks equally good in any configuration. For the mid-nineties, when virtually all Lego buildings were "facades only" (with the entire back wall missing to expose the interior), such construction was revolutionary.

The main section, built around waterfront rocks, has a detachable "Turbo Hut" that can fly off the ground. Inside, there's plenty of storage room and the "Time Warper" machine. A belt-driven mechanism with a crank moves both the spinner wheel and the "centrifuge" above the building, with an ejectable Flying Chair.

The Flybo's backside opens up on hinge bricks. In the Left Room, behind the panoramic glass wall, sits the Catapult; ammo goes down the well (barrels armed with red shots), with a manual trigger underneath. Or, as in my build, ammo PLUS a few other parts! The Right Room contains living quarters (I suppose), with a rotating Telescope mounted on the roof.

Besides the Flying Chair and the "Turbo Hut," Time Cruisers have a jet-powered "Boaty" at their disposal—a winged rowboat with turbines.

PS. After just two seasons, Lego discontinued the theme—and hadn't really tackled the subject of time travel again for decades to come (if ever at all). Fear not, though, as we all now have to wait just five more years till Dr. Cyber's historic discovery in 2025...
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