I’ve been excited to share this project with you for MONTHS. No, it hasn’t been done for months, it’s been done for about five minutes. The closing ceremonies are on Sunday, so I kind-of waited until the last minute to actually do this project… but it’s been in my head for months.
Oh gosh, do those wheels make me happy.
As you know, we’ve been working on Kenton’s “big boy” room. It is going to have a cycling theme. So, I’ve been tossing around different ideas using bike parts in the room. I got this idea a while back and Jason initially tried to talk me out of it. Where would I get bike wheels? You’ll have to buy a whole bike (three bikes!) and just use the wheels? This could get expensive, quick. Yikes!
So, imagine my DELIGHT when I stumbled upon these beauties at my local thrift store…
Three bikes. $4.99 each. WHAT?! I know. You know what’s even better? I had a $10 off coupon. So, I got all three bikes for $5. YESITSTRUE. They all happen to be the same brand and size. The gal at the register guessed I was pregnant with triplet girls. I quite enjoyed telling here there was just one baby in my belly and these bikes were about to get stripped for an art project for my son’s room. Yep, she was confused.
I got home and could barely contain my excitement as I showed Jason what I found. He was impressed! You need to understand, Jason is a cyclist. but not only does he ride a bike for exercise and fun – it’s also his main hobby. He loves scouring eBay for deals on bikes and bike parts. Many times, he’s purchased incredible bikes for way below retail, stripped them and re-sold the parts via eBay for a hefty profit. We have an ongoing agreement… I don’t care if he spends $2,000, $3,000 or even $5,000 on a bike if he’s sure he can turn a profit off of it. He always does.
So, I had the right guy on my team to strip these girls down to just what I needed.
That, my friends is the 6th wheel. I’m saving her for another fun project in the room – but you can see there the toughest parts to remove (thanks to rusty bolts) – the axel, bearings and cog. Once Jason was able to get those off, there was a ton of grease in that middle hole. We spent a couple of days going through cycles of spraying them down with degreaser, wiping, rinsing, letting them dry – before we felt they were ready for the next step…
The first step, once the wheels are successfully naked from all unnecessary parts, spray them down with primer.
Once they’re dry, which takes no time at all here in Arizona, you’re ready to apply the individual ring colors.
Since the Olympic colors are not colors I’m using anywhere else in this room, I opted for Krylon’s Short Cuts, mini spray paint cans:
Aren’t they cute?
Krylon, by the way, didn’t pay me for this post. I just researched spray paint and thought this product would be best. It worked out well. I had more than enough paint for each wheel. I also shopped around for the best price on these puppies, which I found at Hobby Lobby:
Two of the colors were $3.47 and the other three were $3.27. Not sure why red and yellow were more expensive, but still – that was the best price I found.
So, the obvious next step is to start painting the wheels/rings…
The front/back was easy. The sides, however, were a little tricky. At first, I thought the middle hole would fit over a wine or beer bottle, but they were a little small. So, I jerry-rigged three beer bottles through the spokes to hold the wheels just far enough off the ground that I could spray the entire side in one try.
Bonus – after, you have artsy painted beer bottles (which went straight back into the recycling bin!).
With all sides of the wheels painted…
I let them dry for a few hours. Again, the Arizona summer “dry” heat is fantastic for fast drying. It’s not fantastic for late-term pregnancy, but I digress.
Once they were ready, we did a quick Google image consult to check the proper order… then we simply nailed them to the wall, really close together.
Since Kenton’s big boy room is not ready for these rings yet, they are being temporarily housed in the playroom. Before we move them, we’ll be looking at different methods of hanging. This isn’t necessarily the most secure – especially for a curious little boy! Anyway, here’s what they look like right now in the playroom… so you can see the size….
Yes, that’s my little “Made in the USA” future Olympian down there chasing a ball…
We’re hoping he goes for the gold someday in cycling – but his current obsession with balls may indicate another sport interest. We shall see.
Okay, here’s the budget breakdown for this project:
Bikes = $5 ($4.99 each with a $10 off coupon)
Spray paint primer = Already had
Mini spray paints = $16.75
TOTAL = $21.75
What do you think?! Anybody else do an Olympic-theme DIY project this week?
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