Introduction: Sugru Shark

About: Hello, my name is Toglefritz. That’s obviously not my real name; my real name is Scott, but on the Internet I use the nom de plume, Toglefritz. I like to make things and I like to share my work with others. I …

Using Sugru, anybody can make their stuff more comfortable, more rugged, more useful, or less broken.  However, Sugru can also be used to make the world a more beautiful place.  Sugru is an excellent artistic tool on top of all its other fantastic application.

This Instructable will teach you how to make a fun, cool-looking pet shark from an aluminum can and Sugru. 

Step 1: Supplies

You will need the following supplies to make your Sugru Shark:
  • 1 Aluminum Can   -   A simple empty soda can works perfectly.
  • Sugru   -   Get whichever color of Sugru you would like your Sugru Shark to be - my shark will be green.
  • Super Glue

  • Scissors
  • A Knife
  • A Printer, Paper, and Ink
  • A Fine Tip Sharpie
  • Protective Gloves
  • A Drinking Straw
  • Optional (but recommended): Acetone

Step 2: Print the Shark Pattern

The pattern you will use to cut out the pieces for you Sugru Shark is posted below as a Microsoft Word document.  Simply print this page and cut out all the shapes using the cutting tool with which your are most comfortable (avoid swords or axes though).  If possible, print the template on card-stock (or other thick paper), this will make Step 4 easier.

Step 3: Prepare the Can

First, drink the contents of the can if it is not already empty.  Second, carefully cut off the top of the can starting where the can bends in towards top.  Third, cut vertically down the side of the can (which is now more like a cup); cut all the way down to where the can bends in towards the bottom.  Cut off the bottom of the can the same way you cut off the top.  You should now have a nice rectangular piece of aluminum.  Last, rinse off this piece of aluminum, put the bottom of the can aside and dispose of the top by recycling it.

Step 4: Trace on the Template

Using a sharpie, trace around each of the template pieces from Step 2 onto the aluminum sheet.  Do not pack the pieces too close together or else there is a good chance that you will tear the metal as your are cutting.  That said, try to leave at least one inch of metal at the end of the sheet.

The "bottom" piece will require one extra bit of work.  The dotted lines on this piece represent the locations where you will eventually fold the metal part.  Cut along these dotted lines and trace them onto the aluminum sheet.

As for the eyes, simply set the aside for later.

Step 5: Cut Out the Pieces

Be very careful during this step!  The edges of the aluminum could be very sharp, make sure to wear protective gloves or you could cut yourself.

Using scissors, cut the parts out of the aluminum sheet along the lines you traced in the previous step.

Step 6: Fold the "Bottom," "Tail," and "Fin"

Fold the "tail" and "fin" pieces in half so that the mirrored halves match up.  It may be necessary to trim the pieces once folded to ensure that the sides are perfectly even.
Fold the "bottom" piece to a 90 degree angle along the dotted lines.  The best way to accomplish this is to set a ruler along the dotted lines one at a time and fold the metal up against the ruler.

Step 7: Cover the Pieces With Sugru

Carefully cover one side of the "top" piece with Sugru.  If this piece is slightly curved, put the Sugru on the outside of the curve.  Make the layer of Sugru as thin as possible without ripping it.

Cover the "bottom" piece on the side opposite the folds.  Do not cover the small segments outside the folds.

Cover both sides of both the "tail" and "fin."  Once each piece is covered, place it carefully inside the bottom of the can or in any other convenient location.  The important point is not to set either piece flat against any surface because the Sugru could stick to that surface.

Step 8: Texture the Sugru

Using the drinking straw, press circles into the Sugru layer on the "bottom" and "top" pieces.  Make the circles tangent to each other as much as possible.  The only parts to avoid with the straw are the two side fins on the "top" piece.

Once you are done, let the Sugru cure for 24 hours.

Step 9: Put the Sugru Shark Together: Attach the Teeth

A note on safety before you start gluing:  keep a supply of acetone close-by when you work with super glue.  In case you glue you fingers together, rinse them with the acetone in order to soften the super glue bond.  Once the bond is weakened by the acetone, slowly pull your fingers apart.  If you try to pull your fingers apart without the acetone, you could rip you skin off (ouch).

Before the teeth can be attached to the Sugru Shark, we will need to make some small metal brackets to hold them on.  In order to do this, simply cut thin strips from the strips of metal you cut earlier.  Bend each of these small pieces in half to form a 90 degree angle bracket.  You will need at lease four of these small brackets.  Make sure that one end of the bracket is short enough to hide behind the teeth.

Glue one side of each metal bracket to the back (the side with ink) of each set of teeth.  Place one bracket on each end of each set of teeth and the remaining brackets in the center, spaced as you see fit.  Then, glue the other end of each bracket on the long teeth section to the non-Sugru-coated side of the "top."  Glue the shorter set of teeth to the "bottom" in the same way.  Look at the pictures for details about teeth placement. 

Step 10: Put the Sugru Shark Together: Attach the "Bottom" and "Top"

In order to glue the "bottom" and "top" together, first apply glue to one of the small sections outside the fold on the "bottom" piece on the same side as the Sugru.  Then, glue this flap to the non-Sugru-coated side of the "top" as shown in the picture below.  Apply pressure to the bond for at least 30 seconds before working with the other side.
To finish attaching the "top" and "bottom" pieces, repeat the above process for the other flap on the "bottom" piece.  You will need to gently bend the pieces towards each other in order for them to mate properly.

Step 11: Put the Sugru Shark Together: Attach the "Fin" and "Tail"

Before attaching the "fin" establish the middle of the "top" in front of the side fins.  Cut a thin slit through the Sugru and place the "fin" into this slit.  Using a small amount of Sugru, affix the "fin" to the "top."

To attach the "tail"  to the back of the shark.  Use a bit of Sugru to fix the "tail" in place.

Step 12: Put the Sugru Shark Together: Put on the Eyes

To put on the eyes, use a small amount of Sugru to attach them to the front of the shark's dorsal fin.

Once you have attached the dorsal fin, tail and eyes, allow the Sugru to dry for 24 hours.

Step 13: Name Your Sugru Shark

Congratulations, you have successfully created a Sugru Shark.  The only task left to accomplish is naming your new best shark friend; I named mine Togle. 

Sugru Contest

Participated in the
Sugru Contest