Introduction: Fly Sculpture From Broken Chargers
In my basement, I've got a whole box of broken charging cords, and I imagine many people have at least a few broken cords somewhere in their house. So, in a fit of boredom, I decided to make art out of the cords. The charging prongs looked perfect for the legs of an animal, so the decision to make a fly came soon after I looked at the shapes of my selected charging blocks. This same process could be applied to make various other animals, as well.
All you need for this project is several broken charging cords (for phones, computers, etc. — all will work), a hot glue gun, and wire cutters or scissors. You can also use paint to accent the final piece (I didn’t), or beading wire to help keep the wings in shape (not pictured with the rest of the supplies, but I used it).
Step 1: Determine What You Want Your Sculpture to Look Like
Play around with the bases of your charger cords until you’re satisfied with the “body” of your sculpture. Don’t glue anything until you’ve settled on a shape (then see the next step for gluing details). I had three charger bases, as you can see in the picture. I played around with different combinations of the bases before deciding to use all three and make a fly, with the prongs of the chargers forming the legs of it and the wings attached behind the taller middle segment. The charger on the far left of the picture had to be turned relative to the others to make this work, since it had prongs coming out horizontally, rather than vertically.
Step 2: Glue the Charger Blocks in Place
If you are making a creature from more than two chargers (like I am), you’ll want to glue two chargers together first, wait for them to dry, then glue the others on to the already-glued ones, one at a time and drying in between. This will help keep them from shifting out of place during the gluing process. Be sure to glue all the way around each seam (on all sides each charger block touches the next) to strengthen the bond.
Step 3: Trim the Wires
Once all your parts are attached to one another, trim the excess wires. On my front segment, I left a couple inches of wire poking up to form antennas later on. On the middle segment, I cut the wire flush against the base of the charger. I saved the wire that I cut off, though, so I could form wings with it later on. On the last segment, I left just the tip of the wire, so that it formed a little stinger thing.
Step 4: Form Antennae
To form antennae, cut vertically down the middle of the wire on the left segment. It can be difficult to get your wire cutters down that far, so you’ll need to spread out each half of the antennae as you go. Once they are fully separated, you can bend them around until you’re satisfied with how they look.
Step 5: Build and Attach the Wings
With a scrap of wire that you cut off from the chargers in step two, measure out a piece that’s about four times as long as the body. Bend the wire in half, then bend each end in, to the halfway mark so that there’s two circles formed. Glue at the halfway point so it all holds together.
If the wire is too twisted to form a good looking wing, or you just want to add another effect, you can add beading wire to strengthen it. I did this by weaving the wire around each side of the wing, twisting it fully around the wing’s wire each pass to keep the wing wires at a fixed width from each other. You can then gently bend the wings, and the extra wire will help them keep their shape.
Once you are finished shaping the wings, hot glue them onto the body. I recommend doing with at the connection between segments, so that it looks cleaner, like an extension of the connecting segment. Only hot glue the part in between the wings, where you glued earlier to secure them in shape.
Step 6: Paint Your Creation (optional)
I started making this with the intention of painting it, but ended up liking how it looked as an almost all-black piece. Still, you could add paint to yours, especially if your chargers are different colors or you want to make a colorful insect. If you don’t want to paint it, you’re already done! Step back and admire your work.
Participated in the
Modify It Speed Challenge