Submarine Enthusiast Converts Small Barge into U-Boat Replica

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Richard Williams may be 51 years old, but he still has the dreams of a young boy. Sure, he’s not the only one, but unlike others he set out to fulfill them. I guess it’s true what they say, better late than never.

As a child, Richard was a big Star Trek fan, but never got the chance to be on the bridge of the Enterprise, so ten years ago he converted one of the rooms in his apartment into the bridge of the iconic spaceship. It wasn’t the best Star Trek replica ever created, but it made our man happy. “Every boy wants a spaceship, but I got to 40 before I could have mine”, he says, but that’s not the only childhood dream he managed to fulfill. The idea for his U-boat replica, came around his 50th birthday, when his father bought him a barge, so he could enjoy life at a more relaxed pace. But as soon as he laid eyes on it, the former mobility scooter salesman began devising a plan to turn it into something more exciting.

At first, he wanted to transform his barge into The Beatles’ Yellow Submarine, but after he finished converting the hull, he learned the specialist yellow paint would cost him £4,000 ($6,500), so he settled for black, which was considerably cheaper. When it was finished, his wife Laurel said it looked a lot like a German U-boat, and since he had always been interested in naval history, he decided to take it to the next level. With the help of a company that supplies props for the Star Wars and James Bond movies, Richard Williams decided to turn his U-boat into a floating museum.

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Real-Life Iron Man Stuns Office Mates with His Home-Made Armor Suit

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Wang Kang, a 25-year-old office worker from Shanghai, China, surprised his colleagues a few days ago, when he came to work wearing a home-made Iron Man suit.

It happened on June 3rd, 2011. Kang walked into his office building wearing a metallic-looking costume and was immediately stopped by security. After explaining to them that he was actually an employee there they allowed him to go through to the office area where all his work mates stopped what they were doing and stared at the real-life Iron Man that just walked in. Everyone was speechless at first, but proceeded to congratulate Wang Kang for his incredible achievement, and started taking pictures. One of these ended up on China’s Twitter-like platform Weibo, and the young self-taught costume maker became an internet sensation.

Wang Kang got the idea of making his own Iron Man costume after seeing the 2008 blockbuster starring Robert Downey Junior, but actually started working on it on February 26, 2011, right in the living room of his rented apartment. The costume is mainly made of high density foam, wires and tubes, for which he only paid 3,000 yuan ($460). It also features the famous arc reactor which he made from glass. The whole thing took him three months to finish, but the reactions on his colleagues’ faces were totally worth the time and effort. After the office test, Kang took to the streets where he left everyone stunned, as well.

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Amateur Inventor Showcases DIY Solar-Powered Cars

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Chen Shungui, a Chinese amateur inventor, has spent eight years of his life working on two homemade solar-powered cars .

Chen Shungui, from Jingjiang, China’s Jiangsu province, started working on his solar panel cars in 2002, hoping to create a vehicle with no CO2 footprint. The first vehicle was completed in 2008, and despite its unpolished looks, it managed to run at a max speed of 45 km/h on solar power alone. The roof and hood of the car were completely covered with solar panels, but without a battery, it could only be used on sunny days.

Chen went back to the drawing board, hoping to improve its creation in such a way that it could be used on cloudy days and for longer drives. Just a few days ago, he unveiled his second homemade car, with a whole new look, as well as a solar battery that guarantees enough power for a 150 km trip. The new version has a max speed of 60 km/h.

The two innovative solar-powered cars cost Chen Shungui a total of $74,943 and took eight years to complete.

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Chinese Man Builds His Very Own Plane

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24-year-old Zeng Qiang spent the last year working on a home-made airplane, in his home village of Sifang, Southwest China.

Zeng, who makes a living by performing at weddings and funerals, in his neighborhood, suddenly became interested in airplanes 10 years go, and has since then spent most of his spare time studying model airplanes. About a year ago, he set out to build his very own flying machine, and believe it or not, he’s almost done it. His 6-meter-long, 9-meter-wide, 150-kg-heavy airplane just needs an engine, and Zeng Qiang says he’ll have it installed in time for the big unveiling, on September 25, during an airshow, in Chongqing.

The young builder has recorded the building process in a notebook, and says he’s already got a big fan: his 2-year-old son, whose toys are all model airplanes.

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Pixelated Princess Peach Built Out of Plastic Bottle Caps

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A real Super Mario fan spent months collecting plastic bottle caps in order to build a pixelated portrait of the lovely Princess Peach.

After saving her from the clutches of the evil dragon, several times, Instructables user skeplin decided to create a tribute to Princess Peach. With the help of his family, he managed to collect around 1,000 plastic bottle caps, in a few months time. His children were in charge of washing them, while skeplin prepared the 26 colors needed to complete the project.

He used a little bit of Perl and ImageMagick to figure out all the colors, then hand-painted every bottle cap using a dowel rod. Once that was done, he set and glued the bottle caps in place, on a 28×35 grid, and completed a lovely pixelated portrait of Princess Peach that now hangs proudly in his home.

It all sounds easy enough, but once youc check out all the steps, on Instructables, you’ll think twince before having a go at it, yourself. Video at the bottom.

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Yet Another Awesome Iron Man Suit

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I’m a huge fan of cosplay, and although I’ve already featured a few home-made Iron Man costumes on OC, I just couldn’t help share the metal suit made by Ted Gorzkowski.

Ted is a carpenter by trade, but a talented blacksmith at heart. And since he’s always been a fan of superhero movies, he decided to put his blacksmith talents to the test and create a metal replica of Tony Stark’s famous suit. He spent months molding the pieces of metal, painting it in just the right colors and creating the arc reactors out of hundreds of LEDs, but the final result was totally worth the effort.

This Iron Man suit made by Ted Gorzkowski may not be as detailed as the War Machine replica created by cosplay master Anthony Le, but it’s definitely worthy of our praise. For more photos of this cosplay masterpiece, check out Ted’s MySpace profile.

Thanks a lot, Ted!

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Awesome Coffee Table Made of Computer Parts

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With tech garbage on the rise, it’s important we always come up with new ways of disposing of it in a way that doesn’t hurt the environment, and the computer-part coffee table made by Dmaloney serves as a great example.

This unique piece of furniture is actually made of two separate coffee tables, one that holds all the circuit boards, and another that acts as the glass surface. The components you see inside the coffee table are old circuit boards and dives from the late eighties and nineties, many of which actually come from his very first computer. He managed to fit them all together, on a coffee table, like puzzle.

Another cool feature of the computer-part coffee table is the set of LED lights programmed to come on when it gets dark.

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Star Wars Fan Builds Working Millennium Falcon Guitar

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Using an electric guitar and a vintage Millennium Falcon toy, Travis S. managed to build a unique instrument shaped like Han Solo’s starship.

Having built guitars with his father, in high-school, this was a relatively easy task for Travis S., but the idea of building something that has never been done before appealed to him. An avid Star Wars fan, with a sizable collection of memorabilia, he decided to combine his love for the sci-fi franchise with his passion for guitars. It only took him a month, working on weekends, to complete the guitar, but he says he could have completed in under a week.

Since this is an electric guitar, using a plastic toy as the body doesn’t affect the way it sounds, but the artist had to add a maple block from the start to the end of the ship, to keep it from breaking under the tension of the strings.  The back of the Millennium Falcon guitar has been fitted with blue LED lights, powered by their own batteries.

Despite its futuristic look, the guitar was designed to play, and I can only imagine the reaction of the public when someone brings this baby on stage. If you think this is cool, just wait until you here what Travis S has planned next : a Lord of the Rings themed bass guitar. I can’t wait!

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Garden Turned into Real Life Candyland Board Game

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A fan of the Candyland board game, ever since she was 3 three years old, Facebook user Kan-Dee Corner worked meticulously to transform her garden into a real life version of the famous game board.

As a child, Kan-Dee Corner always dreamed about her very own magical Candyland, and now that she’s all grown up, she decided she can make her own magic, and began building a real life version of the board game, in her garden. She started in summer of last year, took a break for the winter, and resumed the building process this spring.

Using parts of three versions of the Candyland game boards, and adding her own themes, Kan-Dee Corner created 17 micro gardens, each with its own theme, color and smell. She did most of the work herself, but her neighbors were very supportive as wel, and one of them even created that nice little shed.

Check out photos of the building process below:

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Father And Son Build Awesome Backyard Stargate

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Back in 2005, when Stargate was the coolest sci-fi series around, sg1archive user ‘mango’ teamed up with his father to build a sweet replica of the stargate.

The project began in AUTOCAD, where the first blueprints were drawn. Since they didn’t have access to a plotter, plans had to be printed on A4 paper and stuck together, in a circle. The small details of the gate had to be drawn up from scratch, using photos and video footage. The skeleton of the gate is made up of 18 X-shaped pieces, and the spinning part is made from small planks.

The intricate stargate symbols had to be painstakingly carved, from wood, and chevrons first had to be carved from Styrofoam. The back of the stargate, though painted in gray, is totally fake, but the front looks realistic enough, with chevrons locking and everything. Thanks to an inner track, it even spins. Mango wasn’t too satisfied with the paint-job, but all in all this is a geeky masterpiece, just like the Stargate home-cinema.

Be sure to check the video Mango made, at the bottom of the post.

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Chinese Car Enthusiast Build’s World’s Cheapest Electric Car

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Zhang Haiting, a 58-year-old car buff, from Shanghai, China, has built a mini electric vehicle, all by himself.

But we’ve seen people build their own cars before, the thing that makes Zhang Haiting so special, is that his particular creation is environment-friendly. The resourceful Chinese inventor and machinery veteran designed and put together his electric vehicle, by himself, using all kinds of salvaged parts and materials.

Zhang has been using his zero-carbon emissions electric car, on his daily commute, for about a year, and Shanghai locals have begun noticing. They regularly get close and curiously check out the weird looking buggy that looks more like a bumper car than a real vehicle, and never miss the chance to get behind the wheel.

The home-made vehicle, built by Zhang Hiating, reaches a top speed of 30 km/h and runs for 50 km, with a fully charged battery. Seeing the reactions of passers-by, its creator is now thinking of commercializing his invention, for the price of just 5,600 yuan ($820).

via ImagineChina

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Chinese Farmer Uses Makeshift Canon to Fend Off Eviction

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Yang Youd, a Chinese farmer living on the outskirts of Wuhan City, has created his very own canon, and it using it against eviction teams who seek to drive him off of his land.

Using an old wheelbarrow and some pipes, Yang made himself a canon, in a desperate attempt to prevent getting evicted. As ammunition, the brave farmer uses fireworks, sold at local shops, around Wuhan. To make his projectiles reach longer distances, Yang Youd has also built himself a makeshift defense tower, which he climbs from the roof of his house. From there, the home-made canon has a range of 100 meters.

So far he has fended off to eviction attempts. Once, in February, when his rockets ran out, he was saved by the local police, and in May, he successfully drove off 100 people, by firing his canon from the tower. There have yet been no reports of injuries, but if Yang Youd keeps at it, I’d say it’s inevitable.

The resourceful farmer has been offered 300,000 yuan, for his land, and all of his neighbors have already accepted the deals they were offered, but Yuan Youd wants five times the amount, and he’s not going down without a fight.

I know it seems a bit strange a mere farmer could build a canon, but we’ve already seen a Chinese farmer build robots, so this should come as no surprise.

via ImagineChina

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Monster Tricycle Is Impractical But Totally Awesome

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What can you do with a monster truck tire and a rich imagination? Build a kick-ass tricycle, of course.

We can’t all build our very own sports car, or make a Batmobile replica out of scratch, but a good idea and some technical skills go along way, and this monster tricycle is the perfect example. Making great use of a giant tire, some European managed to build an old-school, with a modern twist.

Judging by the video footage below, riding the monster tricycle requires great leg  muscles, and I don’t even want to imagine what would happen if anyone were to ride it down hill, but it’s a great way to get noticed and become an Youtube sensation.

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Dude Builds the World’s Slowest Porsche

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Making use of ULC (ultra light construction) an Austrian car enthusiast managed to build the lightest and slowest Porsche in the world.

The Ferdinand GT3 RS may look a lot like a Porsche roadster, but as we all know, appearances can often be deceiving. I’m not even sure we can call this thing a car, considering it doesn’t even have an engine, but it’s definitely an interesting concept. The Ferdinand GT3 RS weighs an astounding 99.63 kilograms, which is lighter than any other working car, but that means all the “unnecessary” components were left out. The body of this home-made sports car is made of plastic tubes, and the wheels are so slim they wouldn’t even fit on a bicycle.

The golden finish of the Ferdinand GT3 RS may look impressive, but you’ll be surprised to know it’s just gold-painted duct tape, covering the plastic tube frame of the car. Since it doesn’t even have an engine, you’re probably wondering how it works. As you can see in the video at the bottom, this DIY vehicle is powered by…(wait for it)…pedals. Just like on a bike, you’ll have to make good use of your legs, to get from A to B.

You can see a lot more photos of the building process of the Ferdinand GT3 RS, on its Flickr stream, but we’ve posted enough photos to give you a good idea of how it was made. The world’s slowest Porsche is now on display at the Lentos Museum of Art, in Linz, Austria.

via Ferdinand Johannes

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Playable Guitar Made with Popsicle Sticks

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Actually making a playable guitar is hard enough, but making it using just popsicle sticks, some glues and basic house tools seems nearly impossible. Still, someone managed to do it.

Instructables user busupholstery managed to leave everyone speechless when he uploaded photos of the guitar he made, using posicle sticks. He bought 4,000 of them, worth $900, and ended up using 2,000 to create his DIY masterpiece. Using his own Gremlin parlor size guitar as a pattern, he spent 240 hours gluing and cutting popsicle sticks, until his unusual guitar was completed.

The most amazing thing about this man’s achievement is that he managed to build a popsicle stick guitar, somewhere in Costa Rica, basically using just a handsaw, some clothespins, rubber bands and glue. Let’s face it, most of us wouldn’t be able to make something like this with the latest power tools available.

And though it may not sound as good as the best guitars on the market, the popsicle stick guitar is playable. Before you even ask, it’s not for sale.

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