Bikes and Wheels Contest Runner-up
I made it at Techshop Detroit.
To celebrate their one-year anniversary, Techshop Detroit hosted a Star Wars themed bicycle design and build completion. We are pleased to announce that our “Chewbikka” was voted Best Light Side and Grand Champion Overall. Team member Rebecca also won the race!
Because the Rebel Alliance wanted to maintain complete secrecy, no in-progress photos were taken of the build, but we can now describe how it was built:Materials:
- Men’s mountain bike with rear carrier
- Craft fur (Fabric Store)
- Toy crossbow (Walmart)
- Small binoculars (Harbor Freight)
- Ping Pong balls (2)
- Vinyl rain gutter (small section)
- 1 x 4 lumber
- Brown leather/vinyl purse (Resale shop)
- Black spray paint
- Silver spray paint
- Brown spray paint
- Painter's masking tape
- Electrical tape
- Black zip ties
- Pan head screws
- Hot glue
Tools (all available at Techshop)
- Radial arm miter saw
- Band saw
- Heat gun
- Adjustable wrench
- Hot glue gun
Fur. Because we wanted to be able to return the bicycle to "stock" condition after the competition, all of the painted (blue) surfaces of the frame were covered in black electrical tape. This not only changed the color, but gave us a surface to attach the fur to, which could be easily removed. The fur in the center section was put on in two pieces, and attached with hot glue. The seat and rear carrier where both covered with single pieces of fur, and attached to the underside with hot glue as well. The top of the center section was also hit with a little bit of black spray paint.
Bowcaster (Crossbow). The ping pong balls were attached with hot glue to either end of the bow, and the whole crossbow was spray painted black. To simulate the double scope, the binoculars were turned upside down, and attached to the rear sight with a zip tie. The entire Bowcaster was attached to the handlebars with black zip ties.
Ammunition / Bandolier. Pieces of 1 x 4 lumber were cut, and a groove was cut into each one with the radial arm miter saw, at an angle matching the angle of the spokes of the wheel (same as the groove in the original spoke reflectors). The wood blocks were spray painted brown, and when dry, a center stripe was masked off with tape. The blocks were then spray painted silver, and attached to the spokes with pan head screws (same method as the original spoke reflectors).
Wookie Sound Generator. Remember the old trick of clothes-pinning old playing cards to your bike, so that it sounds like a motor when the spokes hit it? We took a small piece of vinyl rain gutter and cut it into a strip approximately 1-1/2” wide by 6” long on the band saw. Using a heat gun, we softened the strip to create a 90 degree twist, and a 90 degree bend. After drilling a hole in one end, we attached it to the front fork of the bike, with the bent tab facing in towards the spokes. It doesn’t sound exactly like a wookie, but when the bike gets up to speed, it definitely makes an “A-r-r-r-r-r-r-r-r-r-r” sound!