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Building the Brutal Legend Bus: The Beginning [photoblog]


The blueprint you see is my team's submission to the Los Angeles Red Bull Soap Box Derby. If it looks familiar, it should, because we're building our racer to match the ridiculously metal tour bus from Brutal Legend. I don't know about you, but I don't think there's an image that is better described as "ridiculously awesome" than this concept art. *Slow clap for Tim and the Double Fine artists.* We're making progress on our build, and I'd like to share with Destructoid what we've managed to complete so far.

To get started, we built a prototype out of wood because it's fast and cheap and we just wanted to get a good feel for the size of this monster.

Using this, we make some measurements, see where things are and aren't comfortable for the driver (me), and roll any necessary changes back into the computer model. Once we had the basic dimensions right, we began design on actually making the thing steerable and stoppable. Although, you really can't stop the metal, so we had to fall back to just braking the tires.

After getting confident that our frame would accommodate everything we needed, we bought our metal and headed to the shop. Time to chop the shit up!

And then we put it back together, but different this time. This is my first time welding anything and I love it. Where's Chad? I need a good "Welding is AMAAAAZIIIIIIING!!" If you're thinking of building something out of metal, MIG welding is the way to go for beginners. It's pretty much like a molten metal glue gun. If you are in the San Francisco bay area, check out Tech Shop, which is a really affordable shop where we are building and learned to use all this stuff.

The frame is approaching driveability. We just need to get the brakes and steering in place and soon we can hit the road. Set up takes a while because once we weld it in solidly, there's not a whole lot of going back unless we physically cut out any mistakes we made. Although I do like watching those sparks fly...

While all this heavy work is being done, the racer doesn't really look like the concept yet. Some materials tests are in order! We need to figure out we are going to build the hubcaps and stay light-weight, so we put some foam in the CNC mill and this is what came out.

What could be more rockin' than a pink skull hubcap? I have a feeling this is how a Tim Schafer / Hello Kitty game might turn out. Don't worry, because we have further plans for chroming this. While using computer controlled cutters, we got the idea to represent Double Fine by branding the back of the seat with lasers. Yep, LASERS, MOTHERFUCKER!

Next week, we're branding Destructoid on the other side of the seat because the robot's got our back, amiright!? All in all, the chassis is nearly complete. I will post test run footage as soon as I get the chance. It's a busy build.

If you are in or near LA, come to the Red Bull Soap Box on September 26th and cheer us on! I'll post more progress here as we make it, but since alot of the building is NVGR we'll be more frequently updating our build blog at http://brutalbus.blogspot.com/ for those interested. And if you are an Atlantatoid, I recommend checking out the eastcoast race on the 29th. We won't be able to join you, but you'll have a hell of a good time.

Stay brutal.
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About TheBigFeelone of us since 10:02 PM on 10.20.2008

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