Wow this tank is giving me some serious issues. I made the crochet tank really easily. Once I found the mini M&M tube it was magic. I crochet around that tube to make the tank and then did it again smaller for the other part of the tank. The tank is the battery housing so it needed that extra structure since it couldn’t be stuffed.
Then I bought a brown zipper and attached it by hand inside of each little tank piece. Done!
For the valve I glued wires bent into an L on the top of the M&M tube so the valve would be secured inside of the crochet without having to do anything strange. Then I could just poke the wires through the top and then crochet over them. The wire created the cross bars of the knob. I just had to crochet over them. I actually ended up technically knitting over them. I did a cast-on for each little bar! haha! Worked out well.
For the red knob I made a crochet cord and then slowly worked a wire through the middle and then bent it into shape. Then I needed to twist the wire on itself and stitch over the little bit that peaked out.
I bent each of the gray wires up at a 90 degree angle and fed them through the red yarn so I could twist each one around the red’s wire to secure the crossbars to the knob.
The electrical side gave me some issues.
I used the M&M tube lid to secure the switches. I made a little housing for them and filled it up with hot glue so they’d be super solid.
A post broke off one of my switches so I had to take the whole thing apart and replace it. Then the hot glue kept getting into the switch. I had to tape the switch up to keep the glue from getting inside of it. It was a hot glue mess! The hot glue melted the first housing so I had to cut a new one. Oy. Finally got it all done and tested so it *should* work. I’m really hoping it does.
Tomorrow I’m going to make a skeleton for him so hopefully he’ll stand on his own. I took all of his limbs off today. That was a pain in the butt so I’m hoping it’ll be worth it tomorrow. I really want him to stand on his own!
The very first thing I had to figure out with Big Daddy was whether or not I could light up his face. I wanted something epic and lights in his face would be pretty epic.
How the heck do you put holes into crochet?! My first prototype was just a crochet head that I planned on pushing lights through but the crochet was too tight. Next I tried to make button holes and line those up in the correct pattern which might have worked but it was impossibly hard. Eventually I had my eureka moment and made a bunch of open magic rings to sew together.
Once I figure out the magic ring trick I just had to adjust the size of my magic rings and my hook to get the right size helmet.
The next problem I ran into was how do I turn this into a half sphere??
My solution was to crochet around the perimeter equally to create a guide for where I wanted my sphere to be. So what I did was single crochet across the tops of the circles and then chain between the gaps making sure to keep everything even so it made a nice rounded shape. I essentially created a guide to fill in the holes. I made some tiny crochet square patches and sewed them into the square holes. Then I crocheted in the triangle spaces with tiny crochet triangles. All of the leftover holes I sewed closed and magically I had a half sphere face. You can see what all of that looked like below in the lit face.
With the solid face I could then just single crochet around that initial chain I did. I was careful to keep my stitches even and go around like normal from there.
On to the engineering side! Lights!
I needed to create some kind of lens to fill the holes with. Well hot glue is a great diffuser but needs a mold. I found a plastic straw that happened to be the perfect size of the holes and wrapped it in foil to create a mold of sorts. Then I could fill that foil tube up with hot glue and set it to harden. I picked it up slightly to let some hot glue ooze out to create a base.
Peeling the foil off was a pain in the butt but I managed to pick most of the foil off of each little “eye”. After they were all de-foiled I trimmed them down to fit flush with the crochet. The base I made kept them from just popping right out.
Before I could secure them all into place I had to keep the light from escaping through the crochet fabric. I decided to line the inside of the head in foil. After it was all lined I could fill the whole thing with hot glue. It was actually really fun filling it up with hot glue 😀
Next up, lights! Yay!!!
I bought some ridiculously bright LEDs and a on-off-on switch so I can have a yellow light and a red light. The prototype worked out well so this was exciting!
The lights were all soldered nicely with a 2 AAA battery pack and a 47ohm resistor for each light. I installed the lights by…. MORE HOT GLUE! Hot glue is my friend. They work beautifully. Better than I imagined.