Saturday, May 24, 2008

Tevye's Russian Whizbang Milk Cart
(2008 Contest Entry #2)


That “old” garden cart is actually not as old as it looks. I’ll let Gabe Acrich from Colfax, California tell the story:

"My wife Sarah has been putting on community theatre plays for many years. Sound of Music , Oliver etc. etc. Lots of adults and tons of kids. The kids pass the hat at the end of the play and all the money goes to a charitable organization. Well this year it's Fiddler on the Roof. The lead character and center stage the entire show will be "the Garden Cart". It will serve as the sewing table , the master bed, turned on it's end the wedding backdrop, the Sabbath table and last but not least Tevye's milk cart.

Now for the building of the cart. Everything except a fresh sheet of plywood and the wheels came from the boneyard. It's amazing how much I had in order to build this and that's prior to adding all the extra aged wood to make the cart appear authentic. We searched high and low on the internet for wheels. Too expensive, not authentic, or shipping was too high. We took a car trip from our home in N. California through Arizona to New Mexico. Not for wheels in particular but we did take the van just in case. On our last day in New Mexico , there they were, perfect. And 26 inches as an added bonus. We had forgotten the size we needed but would have bought almost any size and made it work.

The first cast party had a pile of wood and tools awaiting everyone. We built the whole thing in three hours with about 7 men. 2 build and five watch and drink beer. The greatest idea was the extra axle support added at the last minute. It looks just like the leg support but shorter. It comes down just a few inches below the cart bottom and the axle goes through it as well. It adds a good deal more support for these extra heavy wheels. (sorry ,you can barely see the top of it over the wheel in this picture) Except for the wheels and support, and all the extra wood for looks, we followed the plans exactly. Oh, we also widened the cart by 1 foot. No metal across the top either. We gorilla glued the heck out of everything. Let it dry and painted the plywood.

I'll send you I picture while it's up on stage but that's many months away."

Thanks Gabe. That’s a fine cart. I wish you the best with the play, and I wish you the best as Entry #2 in this year’s Whizbang Garden Cart Contest.