Larry's Caravan




Introduction: Larry's Caravan

This is a litte caravan trailer inspired by this book:
My son asked me to make it for him one day, specifically asking me to 3D print it at the TechShop! I thought a combination of 3D printing and laser cutting would be faster and more fun so here you are!

Step 1: Materials List

Makerbot replicator2 3D printer (available at TechShop)
Epilog Laser (available at TechShop)
1 sheet 11x17 thin wood veneer (
1/8" diameter brass or aluminum tube  - I got mine from an art store
hot glue gun
toy truck or car with approx. 40mm wheels
blue paint (optional) 

Step 2: Print the Cart and Wheels

The first step is to 3D print the cart and the two wheels. You can do this at the TechShop if you are near any of its 7 locations ( I have included in this step the stl (stereolithography) files for the chassis (cart.stl) and the wheels (wheel.stl) you should print the wheel file twice so you have two. If you haven't taken the 3D printing class at Techshop, you'll need to do so before using the 3D printer. I used replicatorG to get the files ready to print. 

Step 3: Laser Cut Wood Pieces

Cut the attached file in the sheet of thin wood veneer. If you haven't already, you'll need to take the Laser Cutting and Etching class at TechShop.

Step 4: Glue the Walls Together

Use the hot glue gun to attach the walls together. Somebody to hold those first two pieces steady is very helpful! Let the walls cool before you go to the next step. 

Step 5: Prepare the Roof

NOTE: If your veneer is flexible enough, this might not be necessary. Hold the roof piece under the faucet briefly to moisten. Curve it over a rolling pin if you have one. A spray can or canning jar would work as well. Use rubber bands to hold it in place and put it aside while it dries. 

Step 6: Make the Axle

Cut the 1/8" diameter brass tube down to 5". Crimp the ends so they seat more securely in the hot glue. 

Step 7: Put the Wheels on the Cart

first, you might need to ream out the axle holes in the 3D printed cart chassis, they tend to fill with strings when using the makerbot. Fill the axle hole in one of the wheels with hot glue and push in the crimped end of the 5" brass tube. hold it in place while the glue cools. Snap the wooden floor down into the top of the cart. It may need a little trimming to fit properly.  Then put the axle on the cart and repeat for the other wheel. 

Step 8: Glue the Walls Down to the Cart

Glue the walls down to the floor. 

Step 9: Glue the Roof On

If you got it wet and bent it over a rolling pin, wait until the roof piece is dry. Snap the roof over the tabs in the tops of the walls. Run a bead of hot glue under each eave. Hold it in place while it cools. 

Step 10: Add the Trailer Hitch

A peperclip worked better than the printed trailer hitch, which broke off almost immediately. 

Step 11: Enjoy!


Step 12: (optional) Paint the Roof Blue

'cause that's what it looks like in the book!

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