In honor of one of my favorite podcasts, the Chariots of Iron, I am going to attempt to make them a little iron chariot to put in their nerd den. I started out by trying to research what the difference was between a regular chariot and an iron chariot but came up empty. Every time I searched for “Iron chariot”, all I got was the bible verse, every time I read histories of chariot warfare none of them mention “iron chariots”. So given that records are spotty, I’m going to wing it and make my own super chariot, historical accuracy be damned.
I first started out with the wheels. I drove to hobby stores all over town and could not find mini wagon wheels. I wanted something with spokes, but all I could find were thick solid wood wheels. Given this delema, I decided to just make my own. I got some wood and a special hole drilling drill bit, and cut out some flat discs for wheels.
The idea was that I would drill out as much as I could with regular bits, but then I’d get a razor blade and carve the spokes.
Though this plan quickly sunk as I realized the stress of trying to carve out the spokes was too great for the wood to handle. I spent about an hour under the hot work light trying to carve the fiddly little bastards before I gave up to try something different.
It was then that I had an idea! My hole drilling set had several different size heads; why not combine two of them and just cut out the rims?
Bingo! Now I could just cut the spokes out, slide them into place, and add a dab of super glue.
When that was finished and sanded, I scrounged around in the shed for some metal. I wanted to really make this an “Iron Chariot”. I pulled out an old piece and wire brushed the crap off of it.
When it was nice and cleaned up, I drew out a blue print for the car of the chariot and cut it out.
With some of the left over metal I thought “Hey! You know what would look freakin awesome? Scythe blades!” So I cut out a pair to attach to the axle.
Next came the wheels…again. (I took a break because the failed ones had pissed me off) After about another hour of fiddling, I managed to get these ones looking nice. (I’d build them, cut them, and then slide the axle though and glue)
After a short break I added the scythe blades and center bar.
I then added some wood stain to try and darken the wood. BIG MISTAKE! The wood would not take to the stain. It turned out all splotchy; sometimes the wood stainer would look caked on parts of it. I tried to sand it all off, but I could not sand out all the areas that stained correctly. In the process I tried to wire brush the stain off the wood, which absolutely shredded it.
The whole thing looked like crap after the stain mishap, so not wanting to send COI a shitty looking chariot, I scrapped the whole thing. :-\ I threw away all the wood, wire-brushed the metal, and started over. Knowing what I was doing this time around helped and within one hour I had an entire new chariot, looking better than the original.