Magazine article Sunset

School Bus Toy Chest: To an Unfinished Chest Add Casters, Frames, Paint, and Reflectors

Magazine article Sunset

School Bus Toy Chest: To an Unfinished Chest Add Casters, Frames, Paint, and Reflectors

Article excerpt

The biggest toy in Dusty Moses's toy chest is the chest itself: It resembles a school bus. The chest--from an unfinished furniture store--has been painted, and decorated with reflectors and picture-frame "windows" that hold enlarged photographs of his mom and dad and brothers and sisters. It even rolls. And it definitely stops for teddy bears.

Directions

1. Since we wanted the picture-frame windows to mount to a smooth surface, we reversed the chest lid and remounted the hinge so the side of the chest with the raised panel will face the wall when the bus is parked. We used wood filler for old hinge holes.

2. To provide a surface on which to mount the casters, cut and screw lengths of 1-by-4 to the bottom of the chest 6 inches in from each end. Stop the boards 3/4 inch short of the chest's outside edge to allow space for the big bus "tires" (curved pieces of wood) that will screen the casters. You may have to add a ledger to support the 1-by-4.

3. To make the two tires, set a compass for an 8-inch circle, then for each one, draw a 3 1/4-inch-tall arc on the 1-by-4. cut out both shapes, then center, glue, and nail each to the end of a 1-by-4 crosspiece.

4. Attach casters to 1-by-4 crosspieces. Note that the casters should elevate the chest about 3 1/2 inches off the ground to make room for the tires.

5. Cut two bumpers equal to the width of the chest from the handrail stock. Round ends slightly.

6. Center and drill a hole at the top and bottom of each picture frame.

7. Sand, then paint exterior of chest yellow Paint the frames, the tops of the 16 screws, the bumpers, and the wheel shapes black. …

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