The Return Of Whiz Flash-Burn And His Way Cool Technicolor Barbecue Cart
or
How To Build A Cart For A Small Big Green Egg

Welcome back to another adventure with Whiz Flashburn and his Way Cool Technicolor Barbecue Cart! This time we are on a quest to build a cart for our small Big Green Egg for under $100. A nest for your small Big Green Egg will cost about $70 to $80, so we wanted to keep our price goal in that sort of range. How did we do? Read on. We'll have a final accounting at the end.



Index
Materials List -- A list of all the materials that we are using in this project
Episode 1 -- Introduction to the new design.
Episode 2 -- Cutting the top to size.
Episode 3 -- Cutting the strips for the edge and gluing them to the top.
Episode 4 -- Making the four attachment blocks.
Episode 5 -- Attaching the attachment blocks to their attachment points.
Episode 6 -- Making the attachment permanent, fixing a hole in the top.
Interlude: How To Draw A Circle -- How to draw a large circle without a large compass
Episode 7 -- Measuring the hole, drawing the circle and cutting the hole.
Episode 8 -- Finishing and final setup.
Tips From The Fab 5 -- From the intergallactic hit TV show, "Alien Eye For The Earthling Guy".

Materials List
Things We Have Bought So Far
1 Stainless Steel Restaurant Cart, available at Sam's
1 2' x 4' sheet of red oak plywood
Various scraps of really nice red oak left over from building the large cart
16 stainless steel screws, 1-1/2 inches long
Unknown quantity of wood glue
1 quart Minwax Helmsman Spar Urethane
Things We Think We'll Need
1 BGE cover for medium table (40x26x44)
1 sheet of 1-inch slate that will fit into the shelf on the cart beneath the egg, 17.5 x 17.5 inches
Recording of Kate Smith singing "God Bless America" for the unveiling

Episode 1

Well, well, well. Look whose back in town? Yep, good old Whiz Flashburn is back to make another one of his Way Cool Technicolor Barbecue Carts, this time for a small Big Green Egg!
scart001.jpg This time, ol' Whiz Flashburn is going to start with one of your standard Intragalactic Individual Speed Scooters for the base of his newest cart. You can find these highly useful devices at Sam's Clubs masquerading as a restaurant cart for about 43,000 Olduvian krizenars. That's about 40 bucks to you Earthlings. (Yes, all you have to do is activate the omnidrive thrust circuits hidden in the legs of this little number, and you'll be zipping from one end of the Milky Way to the other at about .3 times the speed of light! Just don't stray beyond the galactic boundaries, though. As versatile and useful as this scooter is, it just doesn't have the horses to make it to another galaxy.)
scart002.jpg We thought about cutting a hole in the top shelf of the Intragalactic Speed Scooter, but we decided to use a wood top instead. We did this primarily because these units are now being manufactured on the planet Joval and frankly, those Jovalians just don't make 'em like they used to. We knew that if we cut the metal grid, it would rust if not protected and we suspect it would rust quickly and badly. Yeah, we could paint the edges with some Rustoleum or something, but would the Rustoleum stick to the chrome plating? We decided not to find out. Besides, we thought an oak top would continue the theme of the original Way Cool Technicolor Barbecue Cart. So we ran down to our local Home Depot and bought a piece of oak plywood, 2 feet by 4 feet. Well, that's what they claimed. It was actually 2 feet by 3 feet, 11 and 3/4 inches. (Hey! If you look closely, there's Mrs. Flashburn's space boots on the door step!)
It looks like we have the materials we'll need, now, so next time we'll get to work!

Episode 2

It's time to talk about dimensions. No, not about the fourth dimension or the Wallace-Simpson Dimension which makes intergalactic travel possible. No, it's time to talk about the dimensions of the project we are about to build!
scart003.jpg Here we demonstrate the need for about 2 inches of clearance between the handle on the intragalactic Speed Scooter and the wood top that we are making. This is so you can get your knuckles in there and hold onto the handle when you are running away from Atorian slime monkeys! Or when you want to move your cart from place to place. And whoa!! What's that? Whiz Flashburn's feet! And he's wearing his orbital flip flops that he got on the planet Whosnoo!
scart004.jpg Here is a view from below showing how the wood will be resting on top of the posts that make the legs of this intragalactic Speed Scooter.
scart005.jpg More dimensional discussion, now. Here is the top cut to length. We cut it to 35 inches. Why 35 inches? Well, as you can see from the previous photo of the handle and tape measure, the total length of this cart is going to be 3 inches plus whatever the size of the top is. If we make the top 37 inches, then overall, the cart will be 40 inches. Hey! That's the same size as a Big Green Egg medium table, and the cover for that table will fit our cart! That's using our noodle! So, 3 inches for the handle, 35 inches for the plywood board, and 2 inches for the two pieces of solid oak that we will glue to the edges. That's 40 inches! Oh, and what about width? Well, the plywood is 24 inches wide, so when we add 2 inches of solid oak edging, that makes 26 inches. HEY!! That's how wide the medium table is, too! We must be living right!
scart006.jpg So, now that we have cut our board to length, it's time to put the solid oak edging on the plywood to cover up those nasty edges! So take those 1-1/2 inch wide strips of oak that you have left over from making the table for your large egg..... YOU DID SAVE THOSE 1-1/2 INCH WIDE STRIPS OF OAK THAT YOU HAD LEFT OVER, DIDN'T YOU???? Oh, I can see this is going be a challenging project for you Earthlings. That is why I returned to Earth. TO SERVE MAN. Ah, but that's a different movie...
Well, Whiz Flashburn is going to wait while you go get those 1x2 strips of solid oak. Go! Get moving! Whiz Flashburn isn't going to be in this part of the solar system forever, you know!

Episode 3

Ok, did you go get some 1x2 solid oak? Pretty expensive, huh? Next time, maybe you'll keep those leftovers, eh? Ok, back to work!
scart007.jpg Ok, we've cut the strips into two 25-inch pieces and two 38-inch pieces. But wow! Look at all that neat space gear!! Just to the left of the table saw is a Kronian nuclear containment dome! And take a look at that blue space juice jug! Boy, I'll bet that comes in handy when traversing long lonely stretches of space with no refueling stops! And at the very tip top of the photo you can just make out the Tuscarian balloon basket, used only on the planet Tuscar by the natives. You don't see them everyday!
scart008.jpg Back to work! Here we have ripped the four strips to 1 inch widths. My, look at how uniform they are!
scart009.jpg Time to start gluing the strips to the plywood! Check out this clamping technique! We didn't bring a bar clamp with us that was long enough to clamp the length of the plywood, so we clamp a board across the plywood and then use that as a clamping point. So, a little wood glue on the strip, some careful lining up, and then apply a clamp to hold it in place until you can get all the clamps on.
scart010.jpg Apply the clamps just tight enough to ensure a good bond. You don't want to squeeze all the glue out of the joint. Did you know that it's a capital offense in the Sturgisian System? I didn't think so. Oh, and if you do squeeze some glue out of the joint, be sure to take a damp cloth and wipe it off. Scrub it off. Just get it off. If that glue dries on the wood surface, you won't get any stain or finish to penetrate there. Another capital offense in the Sturgisian System!
At this point, we need to explain a step that we didn't photograph. You remember, that we cut the strips a bit longer that necessary to cover the width and length of the plywood? Well, in order to glue the long pieces onto the plywood, we need to trim the ends off those short pieces going across the width. We actually cut the short pieces just a wee bit longer than necessary. (And we do mean "wee", as in about 1/32 of an inch on each end.) That way it was close enough to run the whole thing through the table saw to cut half a blade with off of each side and create a perfectly flat surface for gluing the long strips.
scart011.jpg Once we got both short strips glued across the width of the plywood, we glued the long strips along the length of the plywood. And dang if that isn't a sack of Dennison power globes on the floor! I wonder how they got here? Exporting them to backwards civilizations like the Earth is strictly forbidden by the Intergalactic Code!
scart012.jpg There! After running the whole shebang through the table saw to cut off the extra length of the long strips, we have the finished board that will form the basis of the top to our Way Cool Technicolor Barbecue Cart! That was fun wasn't it? More fun that those Atorian slime monkeys I was telling you about, I can tell you!!
Well, Whiz Flashburn has finished the board which will form the top of the cart. Next we answer the musical question, "How the heck you gonna attach that thing?"

Episode 4

We are going to attach it with friction. Yes, science is good! Friction is your friend!
scart013.jpg Before we attach that thing, we will give it a sanding with our gyroscopic GPS-controlled automatic sander. (Great tool. Does everything all by itself.)
scart014.jpg To attach this thing, as we have stated, we are going to use friction. First thing to do is to get those 4-inch wide scraps of oak you had leftover from making the table for your large BGE. What? YOU DID SAVE THOSE 4-INCH WIDE SCRAPS OF OAK THAT YOU HAD LEFT OVER, DIDN'T YOU???? Not again!! Ok, Whiz Flashburn will count to 10 while you beam over to your nearest wood supplier and scrounge some 4-inch wide scraps of oak. 1....2....3....4....5....6....7....8....9....10. Good!
scart015.jpg Ok, first thing is to cut them into four pieces, 3 inches long.
scart016.jpg Then rotate each piece 90 degrees and cut them into 3-inch by 3-inch pieces.
scart017.jpg I was feeling lazy so I decided to use a steel rule instead of my computer-guided laser marking tool. Mark the two diagonals and you now have marked the center of each piece.
scart018.jpg Now, this is the main drive shaft mechanism from a Barallium asteroid penetrator. If you don't have one, you can use a drill press. The legs on the intragalactic Speed Scooter are exactly 1 inch in diameter, so (pop quiz alert!) what size drill bit do you use? Yes, a 1-inch drill bit!
scart019.jpg So there you have it! Four blocks of wood, 3 inches square, with a 1-inch hole in the center! That's worth a photo, isn't it? I'll bet you are already guessing what we are going to do with them! You will probably find that you need to take some very coarse sandpaper and sand the holes enough to enlarge them just a hair. This will allow them to slip over the ends of the four legs in the Intergallactic Speed Scooter. Don't make them too loose. You want some friction.
scart020.jpg Now, if you use the right drill bit and if you drill very carefully, you will end up with these miniature flying saucers! These are great for transporting insects from one galaxy to another. Just fit each one up with a miniature Dawes Hyperthrust® Drive and these babies will make the journey with no refueling! It drives the Intergallactic Agrigulture Enforcement agents nuts!
So, we have the four attachment blocks ready to go. Check back later when we'll show you how to attach the attachment blocks to the attachment points!

Episode 5

Welcome back! It's time to attach the attachment blocks to the attachment points!
scart021.jpg See how the attachment blocks fit over the ends of the legs on our Intergallactic Speed Scooter? We suppose that someone with good measuring skills could measure and lay out the position of the attachment blocks, but we decided to use an empirical approach. Put the blocks in their places, add glue to the blocks, then press the top down on the blocks. Once the glue is dry, we can take the whole thing off the cart and then screw the blocks onto the top.
scart023.jpg We decided to do the blocks two at a time. This was mainly due to a lack of enough clamps and our desire not to get ahead of ourselves. Here we have put clamps on the blocks. Use some scrap pieces to avoid marring the top.
scart022.jpg Here we have taken the top, clamps and blocks off the cart so we can clean up the excess glue. We don't want to glue the top onto the cart, do we? Nooooo..... See the damp areas where we used a damp cloth to wipe away the excess glue.
scart024.jpg Let the glue dry for at least 30 minutes and there you have it! Two blocks securely glued to the top.
scart026.jpg So, we put the other two blocks on their legs, added some glue, then very carefully, we put the top down on the cart. We lined up the two blocks on the top with their legs and once we had them seated on their legs, we lowered the other end of the top onto the blocks and the wet glue. Observe the clamping technique. We don't have clamps deep enough to reach the blocks on the underside. So, we placed two long boards that reached across the width of the top. These boards pressed on the blocks when we put the clamps on the boards.
scart027.jpg Here is what it looks like on top, where we just used some scraps.
scart028.jpg Again, we let the glue dry for a minimum of 30 minutes and there you have it. Four blocks securely glued to the top!
So, we have the four attachment blocks attached to their attachment points. Next will will show you how to ensure those attachment blocks never detach from their attachment points! You never know when your Intergallactic Speed Scooter might run into a meteor shower!

Episode 6

This won't take long. Just drill some holes and drive some screws!
scart029.jpg This part is pretty simple. Just take your space blaster and blast four holes in each block, countersink, and you are ready to go with some 1.5-inch stainless steel screws. (You can't get screws made from Brindinium here on Earth. Another one of those Intergallactic Free Trade Agreement things...)
scart030.jpg On the two blocks nearest the edge, we chose to put the two screws in the middle of the blocks rather than screw into the edge banding. We have to make a confession here. The edge banding is just a bit thicker than the plywood and we didn't want to take the time to cut it down, so the edge is not flush. To get the blocks to sit flush, we actually cut a slight rabbet in the underside of the block. Well, the rabbet was a bit too deep, so we feared if we screwed down into it, it would crack the block in two. Got that?
scart031.jpg Uh, oh, it looks like ol' Whiz got a little overzealous with his space blaster and broke through the other side of the plywood. Not to worry! With a toothpick or other small flat object, just put a little glue on the underside of the chip. Cover it with a small sheet of wax paper, then use a block to clamp the chip down.
scart037.jpg Here is what it looks like after an hour. Not bad. After we sand it, you will hardly even notice!
Ok!! We now have a sheet of plywood with one-inch banding all around to cover the edges. We have four attachment blocks attached to their attachment points. So what's missing? Yin and Yang! It's not what's missing. It's what ISN'T missing. A circle of oak plywood ISN'T missing. So, we have to cut a circle. Remember how we did it in the first adventure, Whiz Flashburn And His Way Cool Technicolor Barbecue Cart? We thought not. Ok, here is a review:

Interlude: How To Draw A Circle

cart19.jpg How are we going to cut a large hole in the top when we are ready to drop the Egg into the cart? Well, as Emeril would say, "I don't know where you buy your compass, but where I buy mine, they don't come in 21" sizes!" Here's a handy technique for drawing large circles. First, we find a thin scrap of wood that is slightly longer than the radius of the circle. As you can see, in one end we have driven a nail. Then drill a small hole at a distance from the nail which is equal to the radius of the circle you need to draw.
cart20.jpg The nail is driven into the wood at the center of the desired circle.
cart21.jpg We use a pencil to draw the circle by placing it in the hole at the other end of the stick.
cart22.jpg You then simply draw the circle by rotating the stick around the center point, drawing with the pencil.
Ok, that is how you draw a large circle. The next thing to do is to figure out how big a circle we need and then draw it on the top of the plywood so we can cut the hole. Yin and Yang. Oooh, this is getting exciting!!

Episode 7

Ok, it's time to measure the size of the hole we are going to cut in the top, draw a circle to guide our cutting, and then cut the hole! Here we go!
scart033.jpg Right, then. Take the sheet of plywood with the 21-inch hole in it that we made when we built the table for our large egg, and.... What? YOU DID SAVE THE SHEET OF PLYWOOD WITH THE 21-INCH HOLE IN IT THAT WE MADE LAST TIME, DIDN'T YOU???? When are you going to learn? Waste not, want not! One more time, we'll wait while you cut a 21-inch hole in a sheet of plywood.... Got it? Ok, then slip it over the small Egg. Open the lid so you can bring the plywood up until it hits the bottom of the hinge in the back. Now measure the distance from the side of the Egg to the edge of the hole. 6 inches? Ok, 21-6=15 inches. So, we'll need a 16-inch hole to allow 1/2 inch all around.
scart034.jpg 16-inch diameter means we want an 8-inch radius. So mark a spot 8 inches from the pivot point on our strip. Drill a small hole there and now we can draw a 16-inch circle. Also, we decided that the hole should be three inches from the edge. So we mark the pivot point 11 inches from the edge, centered between the front and back edges. Nail the strip to the top and we are ready to draw.
scart036.jpg Just swing the strip and pencil around a couple of times and you'll have marked the perfect circle!
scart038.jpg Now, drill a 5/8-inch hole at the edge of the circle so you can get a saw blade in. Here's our self-guided automatic sabre saw doing its thing!
scart039.jpg If you have a helper, then have them hold the circle as you cut so it doesn't fall and possibly create a rough edge or even pull some of the oak veneer off. If you don't have a helper, you can clamp a stick like this so that the circle won't fall when you complete the circle. Just after we took this photo, we moved the stick to the other side of the 5/8-inch hole. Duh....
scart040.jpg And there you have it, your own personal Worm Hole! Ah, but what's that on the cart beneath the top? No, it couldn't be, could it?
scart043.jpg There it is again! Leaning against the garage. I'll be, it's a Hortellian neutron shield from a space cargo transport! Whoa! I wouldn't want to be sitting in the pilot seat on that transport when they fire up the engines! One shot of neutrons from that mass converter and you'll be having 3-headed children! Of course, on planet Skelonia, that's normal...
Well, we have made serious progress! We have made the top, created an attachement method and now we've cut the hole in the top. Check back later and we will do some finishing!

Episode 8

Just like we promised, we are back to do the finishing and final setup!
scart041.jpg Time to do some finishing. The top surface of our top gets 3 coats of Minwax Helmsman Spar Urethane. Be sure to allow each coat to dry thoroughly and do a light sanding in between each coat.
scart042.jpg The three coats have been put on the top. Now we do a couple of coats on the bottom.
scart044.jpg Look a that! He's got TWO Hortellian neutron shields! Apparently, these shields are only cut to rough sizes and the first one he stole, er, obtained was a bit too wide. The second one fit like a glove. Anyway, more discussion now about dimensions. If your small Egg is sitting on its three ceramic feet, when you open the lid with the spring hinge, the lower edge of the hinge will be about 11 inches above the surface that the feet are sitting on. So, depending on the thickness of whatever you use in place of a Hortellian neutron shield, and other miscellaneous factors, you will need to measure from the surface the Egg will rest on to the top surface of the wood top. Adjust the top shelf accordingly so that the lower edge of the hinge will be at least 11 inches above the supporting surface. That's what's great about these Intergallactic Speed Scooters. The legs have 1 inch markings on them so that you don't have to measure each leg to get the shelf level.
scart045.jpg Hoooeee! The finish has dried and we can now attach the top using the attachment blocks that are attached to their attachment points! All that is left to do now is place the Egg in the cart!
scart046.jpg Oh, yeah, baby! Does that look great or what? But we need to check on several design issue to make sure that everything will work ok.
scart047.jpg So, how did our 16-inch measurement for the Worm Hole pan out? Looks pretty good!
scart048.jpg Next thing to check is that the hinge doesn't hit the table when we open it. As you can see, there is less than 1 inch clearance, so we cannot lower the egg any further.
scart049.jpg How about another look but this time with the lid open. Oooh, it's just begging me for some nice thick strip steaks, don't ya' think? Open wide big boy!
scart050.jpg And how does the table cover fit? Fits like a glove, with all due respect for O.J. and Johnny Cochran!
scart051.jpg And there sit the loving couple, Ben and Jennifer! (Jennifer is the large one on the left.)
There you have it, the final exciting episode! But how did we do on our goal of spending less than $100? here is the final accounting:
$40.00 -- Restaurant cart from Sam's Club
$15.00 -- 2' x 4' oak plywood panel from Home Depot
$ 2.72 -- 16 stainless steel 1.5 inch screws from Ace Hardware
$ 2.99 -- Small bottle of wood glue from Home Depot
$12.00 -- 1 quart of Minwax Helmsman Spar Varnish from Ace Hardware
$ 7.00 -- 18" x 24" piece of 1-inch thick slate from a local rock supply store
$ 5.58 -- 7% NC sales tax
------
$85.29 -- Grand Total
We did it! Thanks for visiting this web page, but don't leave without checking on our exclusive tips from the Fab 5! And then check back to see if there are future adventures with Whiz Flashburn And His Way Cool Technicolor Barbecue Cart!

Tips From The Fab 5!!

Before we leave you, we thought we'd get some pointers for using your new cart from the Alien Fab Five! Here are the stars from the latest intergallactic hit TV show "Alien Eye For The Earthling Guy:"

"You just spent a lot of time and effort in making this nice cart. Take care of it by keeping it covered and occasionally giving it a scrub down, light sanding and a new coat of finish. Old nasty carts are horrible!" "When you have company over, your new cart can be a focal point for social interaction. Just don't let your guests get too close. A burned guest is always a recipe for social disaster!" "Outdoor cooking can be fun, but it can also be hard on your hands. Always use a moisturizing formula on your hands after handling charcoal. Your hands will thank you for it!"
"Charcoal is hot and I don't mean when it's burning. But don't ruin your clothes by getting charcoal dust on them. Coordinate a chef's apron with the rest of your outfit and you'll be protected!" "The Big Green Egg is a wonderful cooking tool. But it's not just for meats. Add some excitement to your menu by grilling vegetables and serving with a fresh white wine!"


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