Boyz in the Hood

Well, as we all know, Idaho doesn’t exactly get very warm. We lost all of our snow two days before spring, but it snowed again two days after the Vernal Equinox. So I’m not ready to pull the chassis out into the elements. Also, I started scraping off the junk/gunk/funk/nastiness, but its slow going and I got bored with it very quickly.

So I decided to do something else. Something free and fun. I had a large piece of cardboard from our recent bathroom remodel that the bathtub came in. It was just about the perfect size for a HMMWV hood mockup. I took it inside—without too many protests from my wife—and drew out an outline of the hood dimensions. Then returned to the shop this morning with it to test it out.
Testing the hood base

I had help from my son…
Testing the hood base

As you can see, it’s a little wide:
Testing the hood base

But, I found something that runs on renewable energy to put under the hood!
Testing the hood base

You may be asking if I seriously think I can use a cardboard hood on a truck…No, I don’t. I’m going to be building a fiberglass molding plug/modeling buck/whatever-you-want-to-call-it and molding my own hood. Three reasons I don’t want to buy one. First, I’m trying to save money. Second, I want to be able to make another one if I decide I like the first Hummer. Third, I want to learn how to use fiberglass!

So in the saving money department, let me tell you how I gathered up some styrofoam for the mockup. I piled my two little kids in the car, and rolled around town to Sears, and WalMart, KMart, etc. looking for styrofoam from furniture and electronics packaging. It’s cool because not only is it free, but it helps reuse a little bit that might otherwise go to the landfill. I got the idea from Andrew Junge—check out his recent work for a styrofoam hummer.

Anyway, when the box stores were not very helpful—many thanks to recent trend away from styrofoam packaging to more use of cardboard—we headed around town to some apartment housing. We found just a few pieces we could use. We found some long and flat pieces from furniture boxes like I would have expected, and laying around near a construction site we found some thick pink Owens Corning Foamular250. Realizing the connection, I pulled in and asked if the workers had any more scraps. No luck there, but I remembered that the guy at the landfill let me salvage steel in the past for making knives. Maybe he would let me salvage some construction foam.

After work yesterday, I headed to the landfill. In the 20 minutes I was there before they had to close the gate, I got a nice pile. If it’s not enough for the hood, it will definitely be a good start. Here’s a photo:

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