Sunday, January 29, 2012

The Fourth Dimension

Here things are starting to take shape. I placed the base into position around the shelf system and attached the four posts to the base with four large screws each. It was important to hold the posts as straight as possible during this step.

Next I added some door lintels composed of stacked 1x2's. Here too, these were installed as straight and square as possible.

Not shown here is the addition of two large sheets of plywood to opposite sides of the box. These added stability and provided a place to attach extra shelves in the back side of the TARDIS.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Four Corners

At this stage in the production of my very own TARDIS I assemble the four uprights. Each post is made of six separate boards: two 1x4's on the outside, two 1x3's offset from those, a core of one 2x2, and an outer corner accent piece of cove moulding. This was the simplest manner I could find to fabricate the posts and avoided table saws and routers, while still giving me an authentic presentation. Next time, the project begins to take shape!

Monday, January 23, 2012

The Foundation

The first step in building the exterior of the TARDIS was the base. It's approximately 4.5 feet wide and 4 inches tall. I used 2x4's and some angled door facing to give it a slope. I cut each piece on the miter saw and joined with 2" brads. The facing was mounted directly to the 2x4's.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Back to the Drawing Board

Building a TARDIS is not something you just jump into without a plan. So, the first thing I did was research. My greatest help came from an online community of like minded Whovians over at I collected all the photo reference and real dimensions I could in order to produce the blueprints you see here. This is not to say that I didn't vary a bit from the plans during the project, but this was my dominant guide.

In order to fit the beast in my living room and encase the sliding bookshelf system, my box is about 85-90% of the size of the actual TV prop. The 80's prop was about the size of mine, just over 8 feet tall. Matt Smith explores the universe in a stylish 10 foot tall model these days.

Luckily this size worked out well for using stock lumber without having to rip it down to size. Additionally, I avoided using a table saw (which I don't own and am a little leery of) for the whole project except for a couple of pieces I had sized at the hardware store prior to bringing them home.

Next post I'll show you the first piece I assembled.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Doctor and the Rummage Sale

It all started with an old entertainment center that a friend of mine was selling at our spring yard sale. As I was looking at it I thought, "the TARDIS is about that size." From that point on I could think of nothing else but transforming that cabinet into a time machine.

My goal was to not only construct the most truly geek item in the county, but also make it functional. So it was to become a movie cabinet. Our old one had seen better days.

The first step was stripping the cabinet down to a shell. This was to house sliding shelves for our movie collection. In the photo you can see this early incarnation with TARDIS blue shelves.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Genesis of the TARDIS

For the next few posts I will be indulging in one of my favorite interests. Since childhood I've been fascinated with Doctor Who and become even more so since the series was rebooted on the BBC in 2005. For those who don't know, the Doctor is a 900+ year old Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey who travels through time and space in a ship called the TARDIS. (Time And Relative Dimension In Space) The ship has a cloaking device which allows it to take the form of a common object in the environment in which it materializes. But do to some internal quirk it has been stuck in the form of a British Police Box. Check back soon to see what I've been up to.