When my son went to a dino-party where they forgot the dinos, I decided to use whatever I could find to make some right on the spot.
I started carving into an empty shampoo bottle, which looked like some sort of dino after a while.
It took me several bottles to get it stable enough to stand on its own.
Try it out yourself. I wonder how many bottles you need...
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Step 1: Tools and Parts
You will need:
- A fairly large empty shampoo or soap bottle;
It needs to be roughly rectangular in cross section; a round one will not work.
Take off the stickers and wash it out.
Cut off the bottle neck with the saw.
- Flower cutter or sheet metal scissors;
It should be strong enough to cut through thick plastic. A regular pair of scissors won't qualify.
- Paper tape or other tape you can write on;
- Marker or pen;
- Little handsaw, cutter, flush cutter and bradawl are optional;
Step 2: Draw the Grid
Wrap the bottle in paper tape.
Fold a piece of paper so that's just as wide as the bottle. Now turn it 90 degrees and mark it lengthwise on the bottle.
Use a coloured pen; these markings are just construction lines; you'll draw the lines to be cut out later.
Draw the line that cuts the side of the body in half lengthwise.
Draw a line around the bottle, half the with of the bottle measured from the bottom: At distance A in the picture.
Draw a line around the bottle where the shoulders start to bend.
Draw another line around it again at distance A.
It's stupid to descibe it in words; just look at the picture and try to draw something similar...
Don't forget the teeth!
Step 3: Test As Paper Model
If you only have limited shampoo bottles, it might be wise to test your design in paper first:
Trace the construction lines on a sheet of paper.
Try to draw something like this picture, using the construction lines.
Cut out the black lines.
Close the top and bottom part, so it looks like a paper bottle, cut open.
Play around with the legs, fold and cut them until you are satisfied.
Since all shampoo bottles are different, it's very unlikely that you'll be able to use exactly my design...
Step 4: Cut Out Your Dino
Once you're happy with your paper design [or when you're brave enough to just try it out], draw the cutting lines on the bottle.
Make as symmetrical as possible, so it will be more likely to be stable once finished.
Cut out along these lines using the flower cutter.
I warn you NOT to use the cutter knife: I cut myself several times; the hard plastic can be very tricky.
Cut out the teeth and the lower jaw.
Take the tape off the tail. Or ask someone to do it for you...
Make incisions in the tail, so that you can stretch it out.
Save the parts that you cut out. You might need them later.
Step 5: Head Carving
Draw eyes and the rest of the teeth and cut them out.
Your assistant can now take the tape off the lower jaw.
Cut teeth in the lower jaw and incisions on both sides like in the picture.
Measure out on the outside of the head where the lower jaw needs to hinge. Mark it and cut it out.
Push the flaps of the lower jaw through the head.
Use the cutter to cut off the corners to make the nostrils.
Step 6: Folding the Legs
Ah, the legs. Well, then, I hope you found a way with the paper model to fold them.
I still find it very difficult to get a standard design that's stable.
You'll have to improvise; but improvising is always fun, so surprise yourself and come up with a far better solution than mine!
After you're done with the legs, push them slightly apart to make it stand a bit more stable.
And push the other sides inward, so the tail and the chest seem a bit solid.
Step 7: Adding Arms
Use the left over pieces for the arms.
Make inscisions in the upper body for the arms and push them in.
Cut off the jagged edges and sharp corners and your Shampoo Dino is ready to attack that dirty piece of soap!
Step 8: Extended Family
If you like a skeleton look, you can cut out seperate ribs, like I did in an early model.
It took me many bottles to get a stable design. And still it needs a lot of improvement.
Help me by adding your suggestions or experiences.
Even better: Create your own species!
Second Prize in the