James May attempts a lap on the Isle of Man TT course on a Meccano Motorcycle

In another of his excellent, yet non-award winning series of Toy Stories, James May attempts to bring the world of mechanical toys into the hearts and minds of an otherwise digitally obsessed world. For this attempt he decides to build a full size motorcycle out of Meccano and drive it around the TT course on the Isle of Man. Where the hell does he come up with these ideas? Who cares, it’s fantastic!

We set off with James and Simmy as they get down to the nuts and bolts of building a motorcycle. Except for the tires, the entire bike is made from Meccano parts. There is even a sidecar so he can bring along his old mate Oz Clarke. But as you would expect, the journey is frought with danger. When dealing with a bike made from a children’s toy, not everything goes according to plan. There are some structural problem, some speed issues, some battery issues and some weight concerns. And the clock is ticking. James has to finish his lap before the actual TT race begins.

The idea of building a full size motorcycle is pretty ambitious, but to make it drivable and then really take it on the road is both absurd and amazing. To see it work was amazing. That alone is a pretty noteworthy feat. Then drive it 37 miles? Egad man! So James sets off and does his best complete the challenge.

The format is a little different as the local community isn’t really involved in this one. Sim Oakley is relegated to his workshop to craft this rascal. Not surprising due to the complexity of the project. Does it rival "The Bridge of No Return"? Well, that remains to be seen. But it’s still pretty damn amazing.

It’s another great episode from James. It makes you want to grab or buy some Meccano and make something. I suppose that’s the point isn’t it? The Xbox, PlayStation, and PC games are all fun, but there is something about making a car from the ground up or laying the track for your own little railroad that is quite satisfying. Once again I feel compelled to take some time out from being a grown up and find some time to play.


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