Make your living room into the deck of a Pirate Ship starting with with this Pirate Ship Helm - It's great for photo ops during your pirate party.
Step 1: Here's a video of the build process
Step 2: Materials
The wheel is made from Styrofoam and the spokes are made from wood spindles. The center is made up of thin plywood and cardboard.
I started work on the Styrofoam wheel
Step 3: Cutting the Styrofoam
I bought a 4 inch thick rectangular block of Styrofoam from A.C. Moore art supply store. I marked off arc shaped pieces and cut it with a band saw. The Styrofoam is easily cut, so you could use a hacksaw blade to cut it if you don't have access to a band saw. Another method involves a hot wire which I did not try.
The arc shape pieces are then assembled into a circle and glued together. I used a water based wood glue which was not the best choice - it took several days to dry.
I used 'hot glue' sparingly to hold it together while the wood glue was drying. Too much hot glue can cause the Styrofoam to melt!
Apparently there are glues available at the art supply store that would have been more appropriate.
This was actually the most expensive part of the project - about $15.00
Step 4: Wheel Spokes and Hand Grips
I found some wooden spindles at Home Depot that were exactly what I needed. They cost only a few bucks and had the shape that I was looking for without needing a lathe!
The spindle must be cut in half, and the ends sanded smooth.
I needed to buy only 4 spindles to make the eight spokes and hand grips.