There also seems to be a culture of building a TARDIS. It is afterall, from the outside, a normal British Police Call box. Inside, it is bigger than it appears on the outside. And from the tales of Instructables member Goodhart, he can tell you how to fit a ton of stuff in small maker space. Yup, a small room is smaller on the inside.
I am relatively new to Dr. Who, really didn't watch it while growing up since it was on TV at odd times and I was still trying to figure out Monty Python. There are many versions of the TARDIS so some details may be mashed-up as I tried to adapt it for construction. I'm not really sure exactly which one this ended up looking the most like but feel free to comment on any authentic details you would like to expound on.
Anyway, you haven't really tried Making until you have done an Altoids project, LED project, duct tape project and some kind of IKEA hack. I started out thinking I could mod an IKEA blue foil/laminate Billy bookcase, hem the bottom/top, and applique a set of doors. Then I started to price out the project and that was way more than I should be spending on materials. So at Tarjay I found a smaller bookcase the right size that would do the trick. This one made for college dorm life for $20US was just what I needed. Wally World should have an equivalent product. It's all about finding and using a premade shell that is proportionally correct for the dimensions.
As this is a sekret xmas gift, I shall post a video later of my nephews having fun with it and hopefully I get some video editing skillz to create that vanishing TARDIS special effect.
** Note that this instructable is written up for the contest deadlines, I still have to do some minor tweaks on installing the doors and figure out the best placement of the door handle and I will hot glue a metal disk or coin for the Yale lock. This instructable will be updated to reflect changes.
* full video coming soon *
teaser video, must be viewed with head tilted a lot or put your computer monitor on its side.
Step 1: Acquire the Necessary Materiels
A trip or two to the home center:
Lumber or Timber:
Approximate, since I had some leftover scraps I used from previous projects
1"x 3" stock (2 - six footers)
1"x 2" stock (8 - six footers)
2"x 3" stock (1 - 8 footer) for the base
pencils or 5/16" dowels
sheet of 1/4" thick hardboard, can use thin plywood or mdf
3/8" square stock for window frames
1/2" square stock to frame the POLICE BOX sign
shoe moulding to frame callbox sign
Many of the pieces were built up by just gluing edge to edge. They weren't structural parts so no need to dowel or biscuit the joints. You can never have enough clamps.
I used pocket joinery for many of the structural elements. A special jig is used to drill angled holes. The pocket hole screw reinforces the joint.
Since this was a late at night project, I tried to avoid using power tools. You know how I like my neighbors but I did need to use the router table.
I did most cuts with a handsaw, backsaw/miterbox but a fine ryoba or japanese handsaw would have been nice. I did without my jigsaw and power sander.
I did use my Craftsman cordless drill/driver. http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00917191000P?prdNo=2&blockNo=2&blockType=G2
And I broke out my router/router table.
They sell replacement wall lantern covers. This one for a jar lamp was made from plastic and looked right for the project.
paint in a nice shade of TARDIS blue - the can of navy blue seemed too dark and the deep blue seemed a richer color.
paint primer - always prime your bare wood to get a nice paint finish, I always have a 2-gallon bucket of the house paint primer around for various projects
4 sets of 2" hinges for the doors
two metal handles for the callbox and door
I found a callbox sign on the internet but it didn't look aged enough. I used GIMP to spray paint it with some gray pattern to make it look worn.
I had to create the POLICE BOX sign since it had to fit the space for the sign. It was 1 1/2 x 18 inches. I couldn't figure out how to get the printer to print out larger on two pages so I just cut the graphic in half and printed it out on one page. I will glue it together when done. It was just white text on a black background.
I also created a window texture. I box filled with ice pattern and gave it some shadows by spray painting with a galaxy texture.
I have a paper laminator so I will encase the graphics in plastic sheeting. You can use adhesive laminating paper or clear shelf liner with adhesive to simulate the glass covering.
Lotsa glue, I recommend yellow carpenter's glue, better tack and quicker drying than white
Hot glue gun to attach the various parts
CAUTION: Know your tools and use eye protection where needed. Hot glue is hot and can burn. Having an immense amount of tools laying around is a danger in itself. Operation of a TARDIS should be left to someone who knows which button to press.