Railroad Train Smashes Shopping Cart Creating a Sweet Lowboy Dolly




About: Tim Anderson is the author of the "Heirloom Technology" column in Make Magazine. He is co-founder of www.zcorp.com, manufacturers of "3D Printer" output devices. His detailed drawings of traditional Pacific...

Some tweaker near here likes to leave shopping carts on the railroad tracks.
Trains smash them which does them no good. Usually.
Today however I found one which the train managed to actually improve,
by making it into a tasty little lowboy dolly.
picture: Will Bosworth savors the joy of this wagon's utter smoothness.

Step 1: Wreckage

Someone likes to leave shopping carts on the train tracks here.
Here's the remains of the basket part of one such cart.

Step 2: Skeleton

The rest of the cart looks like this.

Step 3: Cut Off the Front Bracket.

Use a bodygrinder to cut through the welds holding the front bracket on.

Step 4: I'd Hammer in the Morning

I missed some weld, so I beat on it with a hammer til it came off.
Then grind off the sharp stubby welds with the bodygrinder.

Step 5: Gentlemen, Behold!

I have created this... THING!

Commence using the power of the wheel to ease your labors.

Step 6: Life Just Keeps Getting Better

I passed some nice lumber from discarded theatrical sets.
So I got the dolly, stuck my bike's front wheel on the platform of the dolly and rode back tthat way. It didn't work very well but was fun.

There I loaded up the wood, tied it on with an innertube, and threw my bike on top. I pushed it back by foot.
I could have carried twice as much. If it were further I'd have rigged a tongue and dragged it with the bike.

Now I think I'll make some shelves.



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    80 Discussions


    7 years ago on Introduction

    now people across the country will be putting shopping cart in front of trains.... nah, just kidding. this is a great project.


    13 years ago

    But, surely, the supermarkets themselves (presumably thats where the trolleys would come from) are immoral as they put thousands of smaller shops out of business every year, costing the owners their liveleyhoods and their income, ontop of this many exploit their staff with low pay... But, meh, thats nothing to do with this... What a way to make something trivial kinda serious eh? :P And I'm just curious, did you pack all your belongings into those bags especially for that top photo? :P

    11 replies

    BLOODY COMMUNIST! capitolism's the only economic poilcy that works; look what happened to soviet russia! east germany's a huge ghost town now because of communism, and you want to bring it back?

    how does capitolism work?
    america the biggest captolist society on earth, with a huge unemployment percentage(so the size of the population doesn't matter)
    compare that to the unemployment in north korea, the people's republic of china or even the USSR.
    I totally agree east Germany has become a ghost town but that's not due to communism. Before the fall of the Berlin wall East Germany was prosperous enough, after the fall of the berlin wall it was up to the democratic system to re-construct the regoin but made a f***-up of it, as per usual =P

    capitolism works by selling time and effort, in exchange for money, which you can then spend on goods and services. As opposed to communism, where everyone's equal, from the doctor to the guy who sweeps up outside your house, there's no incentive to work. I think that people should be able to do what they want to do with the money they earned with their hard work, instead of have it taken from them by a government that's imposed ridiculously high taxes to support peasants. East germany is empty now not due to communism, but due to the fall of the noticably communist soviet bloc. For tiny, as-yet undiscovered villages in the rainforest, communism's a fine economic proposal, but it's economic suicide for any nation. Finally, about your communist states You mean the dissolved USSR, totalitarian north korea and China, which is now implementing economic reforms?

    The USSR dissolved as a result of war, like British controlled America, or the German monarchy. Those regimes failed through force. And of course there's incentive to work, that being better work conditions. Do you think a doctor is as comfortable job as a road sweeper? With the change of regime it was up to the new democratic system in Germany to re-structure it, but it was never done, at least never done well. "government that's imposed ridiculously high taxes to support peasants." What's that suppose to mean? Peasants being usual working class people. In Britain the richest 5% own 25% of all wealth, and the working class own 5% while we make up 45% of the population. And economic reforms mean nothing, countries' stances and policies change all the time.

    I totally agree with you. Capitalism is a system under which men exploit men, capitalists dont even help themselves, the main point of it is "get the most for yourself". And i live in a capitalistic country and i work for a change. Im Mexican and i hate my people fleeing to US because capitalism tells them to have an american dream. It may be different to Irish, but you got the point


    neigh I say. to the both you (though capitalism is quite a bit better than communism) libertarianism beats it all


    9 years ago on Introduction

    ok i use to do this all the time i had many of the cart like this they are great cause they have many uses. Move'n furniture by your self. put your grill on. Tv stand so you can watch the game out side and my fav is cart race'n strap a lawnchair on it and go.


    10 years ago on Introduction

    Nice Instructable, shame that the carts that get crushed around where I live don't have the plastic body; though my friend did manage to make a sweet lawn chair out of one such cart.


    10 years ago on Step 5

    A perfect garden dolly, unloading the car of a ton of stuff, loading the car with a ton of stuff. It's a beauty!