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Proposal Tardis

Started by bill5423, Oct 22, 2014, 03:03 pm

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Oct 22, 2014, 03:03 pm Last Edit: Oct 23, 2014, 04:43 pm by bill5423
So I wanted to propose to my girlfriend and Needed an Idea. She figured out the first two ideas i had [She learned not to ask me things when I've had a few drinks, I'm an open book] Then one day it came to me. I can build her a Tardis!

The first thing I did was look up if there were others out there that have build a blue box of their own. I quickly found this site. I spent weeks looking over posts and build diaries trying to figure out how I would build my box. Once I have plans in hand I asked my father to help. I don't think he know what he was in for but we took on the job.

So because I wanted to keep this a secret I didn't do a traditional diary where you post as you build. I would have been to worried of my girlfriend finding the thread. So this will be a retrospective. I didn't take a lot of progress pictures but I did record us building it. This thread will me a mix of screen grabs from recordings and close ups of the final box to show how me and my dad build a Tardis. I will try and post as much as I can. Thanks and enjoy.

TARDIS is complete !


Oct 22, 2014, 03:40 pm #1 Last Edit: Oct 22, 2014, 03:45 pm by bill5423
On June 5th we started with a few tools brought up from the basement and plans that I downloaded from a post by Bill Rudloff [Thank you so much for drawing out the plans] It seemed like starting with the base was the smartest choice. We took 4 4X4s trimmed them to size, angled out the ends and fit them together.

cutting base.jpg

We took the trimmed pieces and ran them through the table saw with a 24 degree angle.

trimming the base.jpg

After that we set the 4 pieces roughly together to see if we got it right.

TARDIS is complete !


We clamped the ends together and predrilled two holes at each end. Then with some wood glue, bolts, and some elbow grease we got the bottom frame done. Once the frame was done we started to add the framing. We ripped the wood about an inch so when we dropped in the floor it would be flush with the frame edge

Framing the floor

base floor_04.jpg

Placing a dummy floor to make sure it will be flush with the frame

base floor_05.jpg
TARDIS is complete !


Oct 22, 2014, 06:20 pm #3 Last Edit: Oct 22, 2014, 06:33 pm by bill5423
While working on the base we also worked on the posts using 2X4s.
Cleaned up the ends, glued, and nailed them together. Fist we did haves.

we ran glue along the edge of one piece. Laid the other on top with a little support, then tailed the two together.

making_postes_01 copy.jpg

You can see the halves in the picture on the right.


Unfortunately I don't have images of us putting the halves together to finish the posts. we took each half ran glue alone one edge and ran nails alone the side Using clamps and muscle to square up each half before nailing. You can see the final 4 posts under the table in the image below


With the posts set we held them in place to set where they would fall into the base once the floor was done. We added more support beams as well.

base floor_02.1.jpg
base floor_02.2.jpg
TARDIS is complete !


Thats me alright. haha I didn't think any site would link to the proposal video. Good find  ;D
TARDIS is complete !


that is really awesome.
It's always a matter of time...


Congrats to you both then, and it looks a great finished Tardis on the video clip.  :)

I'm so envious of you guys who have room to do the building indoors!  ;D


thank you! Yea having the garage to work in was great. people are happy to park in there again.
TARDIS is complete !


Oct 23, 2014, 02:53 pm #9 Last Edit: Oct 23, 2014, 07:37 pm by bill5423
After the posts were done we put in the floor of the base and moved onto doing the top signs. We thought with the base, posts, and top signs done it would be easier to make the walls/doors and top, and mare sure they fit properly.

We used a large piece of plywood for the floor of the base. After a few measures and cuts it fit perfectly. Then with a jigsaw I cut the squares out where the posts would slide in.

base floor_06.jpg

Here is a close up of what it looked like when it was done. The posts fit nice a snug into the base. We also found with the weight of the top the posts don't need to be secured down to the base. it also makes it easy to take apart which we needed it to me to move out of the garage.


Here is what the base looks like from the bottom. we put square pieces of plywood covering the post holes so the posts have something to hit when you push them in. It also raised up the base a bit so it's east to pick up. You can see we drilled holes in the support beams to run a cord for the lights. The finished sign boxes make an appearance in this pic so thats a good segue into those bad boys.

base floor_07.jpg

Next the Top signs were made. We cut 1X8s to size and made identical top and bottom pieces. The illustration below [which I got from another forum post] is what we used while making the top signs. The top signs consist of 6 pieces, top/bottom, left/right large pieces to close the box ends, and left/right small pieces to close the channel ends.


To fit the signs in it's a good idea to rout a channel. [ IMPORTANT THING I LEARNED If I could do it again I would rout the channel after you have the signs made. We made all 4 boxes before I had the signs made. When I got the signs done the material I used was way thinner than the channel. This let light through. We did correct this toward the end of the build.]


once we had identical top and bottom pieces. we trimmed it to size and took the hand saw to cut out a notch so it would fit flush against the posts


Many Beer breaks


Below you can see what the cut looks like on the finished piece.


so we had a top & bottom both cut and routed. Next thing made were both the large and small end pieces to seal the sign boxes. Once the pieces were made we glues and nailed the top and bottom the ends. Leave one of the small end pieces off so you can slip the signs.  


here is a close up of the finished product.


Base, posts, and top signs roughly done August 3rd


The TOP We moved onto the top next!

Using 2X4s we measure and cut the outline of the top. I thought that the roof went to the ends of the posts but it actually is set in a bit. The corners of the roof sit in the center of the posts. The box in the center is where the top lantern will sit.


We measured and cut 4 pieces then placed them over the base to make sure they looked good. After that we put glue on each end and screwed them together.


The top is build up with a second layer. Once the outline was done we made the inner structure


That is the base of the roof done. Remember use lots of wood glue.


Now its time to add the support beams that will hold up there center area for the light and the roof panels.

We added small support pieces around the inside edge for the roof panels to be drilled into.


Heres a close up from the finished piece.


After that we found the center of the base and aligned the top to it


Next we cut the center light box to size


Then came time to add the real support beams that would also give the roof a little bit of an incline. After this part in the build the camera died and the rest of the top build was done off camera. I will show images from the final top.


Below are images from inside the final tardis. You can see we repeated the process of adding support beams then cut and attached the roof panels. We used the center square to house the electrical box for the top lantern and main lighting for the interior of the tardis. This was done later in the build


I used a simple cheap hanging light fixture and a vintage style bulb for the interior light.

Screen Shot 2014-10-23 at 3.26.19 PM.png
Screen Shot 2014-10-23 at 3.26.27 PM.png

A good image of where we were at in the build by the 24th or August. Base, posts, top signs, and top roughly completed.

TARDIS is complete !


Oct 23, 2014, 06:48 pm #10 Last Edit: Oct 23, 2014, 06:48 pm by galacticprobe
Good suffering Jehoshaphat! It must be nice to have a workshop like that, and the room to build a beautiful TARDIS!

"What's wrong with being childish?! I like being childish." -3rd Doctor, "Terror of the Autons"


Well sell bulbs like that where I work.  Looks great! 


Thanks man. I like the vintage look and it throws that nice orange light through the windows to give it a real Eccleston/Tennant look and feel.
TARDIS is complete !


Oct 23, 2014, 09:07 pm #13 Last Edit: Oct 27, 2014, 02:07 pm by bill5423
For the top lantern I used this as the starting point. I bought it from amazon

Screen Shot 2014-10-23 at 4.53.05 PM.png

To make it more like Tennant's light you have to cut and remove the top piece with the holes in it and remove the metal ring thing also. I remover the bottom flair because it was to big in my opinion but you can leave it it you like. If you remove it you need to made a piece that fit inside to house the light.
red areas removed

Screen Shot 2014-10-23 at 4.53.05 PM_02.jpg

Remove all the plastic "fake glass parts" before cutting and don't put them back on until you are done painting the whole lantern.
Using a dremel tool I cut the top piece and bottom piece off. the Top part you have to cut along the edge to get off but the bottom is really easy. There are I think 5 small welds oping it on. Just cut through those and pull it off. Be gentle with this piece. The metal can bend if to much force is put on it


Here is the finished product. I painted the whole fixture before putting in the base and bulb. My dad made a semi circular base that would fit into the fixture to hold the light, now that we had removed the base it came with. This took a bit of finessing on his part to make it fit.
Make sure to drill a hole in the bottom so you can run a cord to where ever you plan on powering it.


Made a square base to fit the light and cover the opening on the roof. Ran the power cord to the electrical box inside.

For the 4 small posts I drilled holes into the base, pushed the wood pieces up from the bottom until they touched the rim of the lantern, then cut them flush with the base. Then i put an epoxy on the tips of each post to stick them to the rim. This was done before it was attached to the roof

Thing I messed up when i was done with the small posts around the lantern I noticed that one of them was right in front of the lantern door and now I can't replace the bulb without breaking that post. So place the lantern door opening not in front of a post.


Once that all dried I panted it blue. After the roof was painted we screwed in the lantern to the opening and sealed it up tight. I'm very happy with the results. This was done later in the build timeline.


Here's an image from the show that I used for reference.


Measuring and cutting the posts to size.


Then with some scrap wood we made the top caps to seal in the post [ just in case it was left outside and started to rain.]


To get the sign boxes attached to the posts we needed to get them in position and clamped up.


With a bit of force the post fit snug into the base


We used most of the clamps we had to get all the light boxes in place.

TARDIS is complete !