I searched the Internet and found scale models, cakes, legos, baby strollers and costumes resembling an AT-AT, but never found a bed that resembled an AT-AT. So I made one.
Since it is made from materials readily available at Home Depot or Lowe's, I thought I would post a video/slide show of photos I took during the build process.
Hopefully this will be helpful to someone else who might be considering a Star Wars project for their young jedi!
May the force be with you!
First I would like to say thanks for viewing the video and posting such wonderful comments.
I had no idea it would generate this much interest. Many, many thanks indeed!
I would also like to acknowledge John Williams and his orchestra for the powerful Star Wars theme music.
Second, you have my sincere apology for including the galacticly-incorrect transformer bedding. This anomaly will be vanquished in Episode 2.
For the record, I have also personally apologized to Lord Vader for giving him the wrong light saber. My son knew it was the wrong color, but I didnâ€™t think anyone would notice
And for those viewers wanting to be adopted, regretfully I must say no. The household budget is maxed out. Do you realize how much it costs to feed a young, growing Sith Lord?! If you are still serious about wanting to be adopted, maybe you should talk to Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie. I hear they are expanding their brood.
In response to some of the more serious viewerâ€™s questions, here are a few more details about the project:
The City Museum referenced in the opening crawl is located in downtown St. Louis, Missouri. Link: http://www.citymuseum.org
As far as prior experience, I have built a wooden swing set from a Home Depot kit and used foam for making Halloween props for my lawn. But that's pretty much it. I'm not a carpenter or special effects guy or something of that nature.
From start to fully operation AT-AT, the project took about six weeks. The basic frame is just a typical college loft bed that can be built in a few days. But figuring out the leg and body panel dimensions took some trial & error. I used cardboard mockups first, before making a single cut. After that, most of my time was spent sanding, painting, sanding again and painting again to give a smooth, splinter-free finish.
Stenciling of the body panels, undercarriage and legs was done with Sharpie markers of various widths. It was much faster than painting and permanent too.
How did I get it out of the basement? George Lucas offered to come over with a chainsaw, but I declined. Seriously, I made it to be assembled and disassembled in pieces, just like a college loft bed. Permanent pieces are screwed together, then those pieces bolted together to form the frame. Then the body panels are bolted to the frame. The legs are just plywood facades, so they are just fastened to the frame with screws. Mounting the head to the body was a dilemma solved by the local plumbing expert at Lowe's. She suggested fastening a threaded cap to the body panel and an adapter fitting to that. This adapter is threaded on one end for the cap and receives regular pipe or adapters on the other end. That way the neck piece could easily slip right onto the non-threaded end of the adapter.
For finishing the sculpted foam head, I used Foam Putty, made by Woodland Scenics. I found it at a local Hobby Lobby store. It helped fill in the gaps and smooth out the bumps. It goes on like cake icing or lightweight spackle. When it dries, it has the consistency of foam and is easily sanded smooth. Never used the stuff before, but it worked great. It's made for model railroad enthusiasts, who build their own scenery. The head itself is constructed using the pink Owens Corning Foamular insulation board from Home Depot. I just cut pieces and layered them. The pieces are bonded together with 77 spray adhesive by 3M, which is formulated not to deteriorate the foam. It too can be found at craft and hardware stores.
Hope the tidbits help those considering their own AT-AT project. Would love to see another AT-AT posted!
Thanks once again!