Earlier today I walked into my local department store to find out that this year's LEGO Star Wars advent calendars were heavily discounted as it was already four days into december, and I, being 19 and loving the movies, thought that buying one would of course be the greatest idea of this month. When I got home I naturally got to open as many as four gifts, it being the fourth day, and I was hooked once again...

Pretty soon after I had assembled a mini model of a Star Destroyer, I started playing with an idea to make it into a keychain. I started searching Instructables if anyone had posted a guide on making one, and I was sure there was at least one, I only managed to come up with a couple of rather "interesting" Instructables, both of which basically involved drilling a 5mm hole in the middle of a model and attaching some sort of string to it and calling it a keychain. Tut tut, but sure, it works fine enough for a simple brick; I'll give you that. I knew that I could do wayyy better.

So here it is, my guide on how to convert a LEGO mini model into a sturdy keychain.

Note: Sorry if the pictures are more or less a bit dark! The Sun goes down at around 2:30pm around here at this time of the month, and, well, I'm doing some late night 'ibling so it doesn't exactly help with the lighting either...

If you have any questions about this Instructable, feel free to comment. :)

EDIT; (NEARLY) TWO YEARS IN: I stumbled across here to reply to a comment today, and found out that this Instructable has been viewed by over 15k people so far, which is awesome and a bit stunning considering how simple I thought it would be. Thanks to everyone who's taken the time to read through, and I hope people have taken the idea to make a kickass keychain. Mine has lasted insanely well, and at this rate the plastic will wear off into a round slab before it breaks :)

Step 1: Materials List

So here's what you need:

  1. A Lego Model
    • Well this is quite obvious, this's why we're doing this really. Now when it comes to choosing a model, you should remember that some models with thin, pointy pieces might break easily in your pocket. (As in break physically. Not as in "Oh! Now I've to reassemble it!") LEGO characters themselves are what you usually find in Keychains, but I would not recommend making a keychain out of one if you can find it for just a few [insert currency unit here] from here. Now small "proper" models (that don't have the weak pointy pieces I mentioned) make for much neater, nerd-approved, keychains, and they usually are a bit easier to make when it comes to finding a place to attach a hook.
  2. A paperclip
    • Now the "interesting" 'ibles I also mentioned used ready-made hooks (or holes), but I didn't have one so I decided to use a piece cut out of a paperclip instead, since it is more customisable. And for the cutting you need...
  3. Wire cutters
    • Pretty much any pair will do in this case because we'll only cut the paperclip with these.
  4. Some epoxy to glue the parts together.
    • I cannot stress this enough: if you don't know about epoxy, read about it before glueing anything together. It is strong enough to really screw things up for you if you're not careful.
  5. "Keychain-thingamajik"
    • We'll use this to attach the model to the rest of your keys, as you might have guessed, and probably the easiest way to get one is to loot an old keychain. It's an eco-friendly thing to do and, if you're lazy like me, the easiest, most effortless way.
<p>I want to make a keychain out of one of my droid minifigs as well. how did you attach the ring to its head?</p>
I found an eye bolt / screw (pictured) from my garage, so I measured its screw part's thickness with a caliper and drilled a hole into the minifig's head (did the same for the droid transport minifig). I also carefully applied some epoxy with a needle into the hole before to make sure that it stays there (also it sort of helps with keeping the plastic intact, so that the screw wouldn't mutilate the minifig's head if it was pulled with force, etc.) :)<br><br>
<p>Also I thought I'd add how well this Instructable has worked for me: <br><br>I've now had the keychain in my pocket for nearly two years, and it has stood the test of time and heavy wear marvelously. The command tower part of the minifig and one of the blue engine blocks broke off maybe a week or two after glueing everything together, but I'm guessing it was because of too little epoxy that caused this. And to say something about how durable this thing is, all the corners have physically worn off heavily in my pocket and they're pretty much round throughout the model, but it hasn't broken even under stress. :) </p>
Very fun! So many possibilities for this :) You should enter this into the <a href="http://www.instructables.com/contest/holidaygifts2012">Holiday Gifts Contest</a>!
There are yeah! It's a very flexible instructable indeed, so it should work out with a number of other things as well :)<br><br>Sadly Instructables changed their rules for competitions couple of years ago, so instead of having a thorough list of countries where the entrants can come from, they put up a rather interesting list that doesn't have Finland in it :(
It's a huge bummer, but it is because all countries have different rules in regards to contest and Autodesk is ensuring that we follow each countries specific rules. You can see more about it <a href="http://www.instructables.com/community/Update-on-International-Entries-in-Instructables-C/">here</a>.
Yeah I can only imagine what a legal nightmare it would be to make the contest available for all globally... No problem with the rules though since it isn't the only contest around, plus I should be fine with the rules next autumn when I'll be moving to Scotland :)

About This Instructable


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Bio: A Finnish indie junkie, a freeskier, a casual gamer, an emoji sensei, and a corporate banana.
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