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Build Your Own Battlemech 145

Posted by michael
from the autocannon-20-always-a-good-choice dept.
Jodrell writes "Hot on the heels of the Back Yard Millenium Falcon comes this: a BattleMech Tree House. Using a couple of packing crates and some angle iron, a very dedicated Dad built a tree house around a Madcat 'mech (or a Timberwolf to those in the know) that stands about 25 feet tall. I want one :-)" And in a related story, BoomZilla points out that you can pick up a Rebel Blockade Runner on Ebay. Of course.
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Build Your Own Battlemech

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  • Sigh.. (Score:4, Funny)

    by ruszka (456169) on Friday July 26, 2002 @08:57AM (#3957468)
    Why couldn't my parents have been geeks and built me a treehouse like that :( Instead my dad has spent his life inspecting submarines, inspecting nuclear plants.. oh wait.. that's geekie enough :D
  • Are there any mirrors where the pictures aren't on a games site? "Games" is a blocked category for my internet access at work.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 26, 2002 @09:09AM (#3957530)
    Why, for the Falcon, does it say "the key is a good base structure"... for which the photo on that page is some guys ass, bent over directly in front of the camera?
  • I don't believe it, the one time I actually want to read the article, and it's slashdotted...

    Anyway. I was a big BT fan for some time (my collection of BT sourcebooks and novels is only now being overtaken by my anime collection), but I dropped out of the loop after FASA died off. So, what's happening? Have wizkids released new stuff now, and if so, what's it like and how does it compare to the original? How far ahead of 306X are we now? I'd look at the wizkids site, but that seems to be down ^^;

    Maran
    • WizKids has licensed out battletech stuff to Fantasy Productions, at least for "classic battletech". WizKids will be releasing a click-base version of the game called MechWarrior: Dark Age next month. Fanpro has put out a few products, and Ral Partha has been more-or-less ressurected in Iron Wind Metals, which released a handful of new mini's before a WizKids-imposed blackout period (I guess WizKids doesn't want any competition for MW:DA- can't say I blame them, it'll need all the help it can get). More new mini's are scheduled for release in October, and there should be more CBT book products out after GenCon. The game year is 3067, by the way.
    • I was a big BT fan

      Watch out with that abbreviation. There's also a music artist by the name of BT.

      • "Watch out with that abbreviation. There's also a music artist by the name of BT."

        That's also the abbreviation used for British Telecom, which can be even more confusing...

        ^_^

        Maran
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Check out Michael Stackpole's site. He's answered all questions I had about the universe progression.

      http://www.stormwolf.com/essays/btechret.html [stormwolf.com]

      http://www.stormwolf.com/essays/btechret2.html [stormwolf.com]

      And here's a piece of fiction he's written for the new era, but it's on wizkids so I'm not sure if the link still works...

      http://www.wizkidsgames.com/battletech/bt_fiction. htm [wizkidsgames.com]

      The first novel based in the new era should be available later this year, IIRC.
    • by mskfisher (22425) on Friday July 26, 2002 @10:08AM (#3957923) Homepage Journal
      here's a mirror [grabualsa.net]... the CSS didn't copy completely, so it's jacked in a couple places, but i got all the pictures.
    • Far from dead for the latest on Classic Battletech www.classicbattletech.com For the latest in mini's http://member.ehostingbiz.com/ironwind/sc/showcata log.asp?CategoryLevel=1&Cat1=BattleTech%20Miniatur es&CategoryName=BattleTech%20Miniatures and in the world of Battletech the current year is 3067. the TRO and RS for 3067 are now out. and for the best mech making program out there http://www.heavymetalpro.com/ Enjoy and I hope to see you over a set of dice soon Btech_geek
  • Now all he needs are a few more of these and he could start charging admission... Heck, he's probably getting offers from other people to build him as we speak...

    "Heatsinks!? This is the 25th Century for cryin out loud!"
  • Best Dad EVER!! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by TonyZahn (534930)
    All I have to say is that those kids damn well better love their Dad. I know, a lot of it was just because it's a fun thing to do, but the amount of time, effort, and money that this guy shelled out for this overblown treehouse (minus the tree) better be appreciated.

    That is, without a doubt, one of the coolest garage projects I've ever seen.
    • by tb3 (313150) on Friday July 26, 2002 @10:26AM (#3958085) Homepage
      Yeah, but he's going to pay for it in the end. He obviously hasn't watched enough anime to realize what happens to fathers who build giant robots for their kids ...
      • Sure, pick the one day my boss is in town to have me spray my computer monitor with a fine coffee mist and erupt into a choking/coughing/laughing fit.

        Now I'll actually have to go do some work.

    • Very much agreed on the Best Dad EVER! bit -- although I have to wonder what his wife thought of the whole thing :)

      Oh, and there is a tree associated with it. The rear left corner (if looking at it from the front) appears to be resting against a pine tree. It's not 100% clear though, and I hope he knows that pine trees only live about 30-40 years before coming down one way or another (well, that particular kind of pine does -- grew up with them and have a ton in my yard).
  • Boy this is the best thing that could have possibly happened to the Ebay auction of The Rebel Blockade Runner. Its funny as hell watching the counter go up on his ebay add. Thousands of geeks browsing through his ebay and... he just might have a Rebel's chance at selling it!
  • I will say, however, that Battletech was the single most confusing game I ever had on my Apple //e. I never had any idea what the point of the game was, how I was doing, or sometimes even whether or not I was playing. However, I loved it based on the sheer coolness of the box and instruction manual.

    Game companies today could learn a thing or two. People will buy the most boring- or stupid-ass shit as long as the box looks cool, and if the instruction manual delivers, they will not be upset. I think this is how SuSe works.
  • by JBMcB (73720) on Friday July 26, 2002 @09:24AM (#3957607)
    I'm turning my Sunbird into the Knight 2000... Anyone know where to get kevlar and titanium cheap?

    • Re:That does it! (Score:2, Informative)

      by jmoriarty (179788)
      If you want your very own KITT you might want to contact the fellow who sells the upgrade parts [knighton-line.com].

      I didn't see any prices on making it bulletproof, but you could always drop him a note and see if he can hook you up.
    • There was a time that I thought that if I ever hit the lottery, I'd have to have my own Enterprise bridge simulator built, ala Star Trek 2....I wonder if anyone has ever tried?
    • I'm turning my Sunbird into the Knight 2000.

      You might want to try by at least getting the right car: a Firebird, preferably an 82-90 model. And, while your at it, you might as well get a Trans Am (KITT was actually a Trans Am), though if you're going to get one of those Knight Rider body kits a Formula will probably work well enough.
      • Actually, the Knight 2000, in the not-that-good TV Movie, was KITT's AI placed into first an old chevy, a '57 I think, and then into this bizarre concept-car looking thing. Not at all resembling the original series. I think that's the one he means.
  • Site's starting to report connection refused already. Wow.

    Makes me wonder though, since it seems that just about every site that's linked to by the italic bit of a Slashdot article goes down shortly, would an article that directly cites slashdot.org slashdot slashdot? ;)
  • Mirror (Score:2, Troll)

    by tweakt (325224)
    "Connection Refused"... it's slowly dying under load So.... http://www.tweakt.net/mwdarkage/ *cringe* please mirror off this too, so my server doesn't melt...
    • by tweakt (325224)

      I said someone else mirror this too! Yikes!
      My upstream is now completely saturated. Woo-hoo!

      It's going down in about 30min, so someone better make another mirror.
  • Here is a Mirror (Score:5, Informative)

    by legomad (596194) on Friday July 26, 2002 @09:26AM (#3957623)
    www.mektek.net Scroll halfway down the mainpage.
  • Where do people/geeks find the free time to make stuff like this. No wonder they (we) rarely get laid.
    • Where do people/geeks find the free time to make stuff like this. No wonder they (we) rarely get laid.

      Spot children in article and pictures. What was it, the immaculate conception?
  • Put some real rockets in there and quiet down that barking dog next door!
  • That's what I kept thinking in the back of my mind when i read this. First it gets its roots smashed during the leg installation. Then used as a makeshift crane for the body. And it will most likely have to go when its size and root structure begin to threaten the mech itself. Hey this suddenly reminds me of an old mech game where you got points for taking out trees. Terra Firma or something like that.
  • by ivrcti (535150) on Friday July 26, 2002 @09:36AM (#3957686)
    I want sooooo badly to show this site to my kids, but absolutely cringe at what will surely be the next words out of their mouths....
    • Re:What a dilema.... (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Maran (151221)
      Depending on how old they are (and assuming you have space available) tell them "Ok, as long as you help". Obviously heavy metalwork is a bit risky, but they can do things like cut wood, paint, or screw things together.

      This way, they get a 'Mech, you get a 'Mech, you find a productive use for youghful energy, and they learn useful DIY skills that will come in handy during adult life.

      Maran
    • that guy is raising the bar pretty high for the rest of us! good god! m. http://www.pataphysics-lab.com
    • Nononononono you got that phrase wrong.

      It should be:

      I want sooooo badly to show this site to my
      wife, but absolutely cringe at what will surely be the next words out of her mouth....
  • by foo fighter (151863) on Friday July 26, 2002 @09:41AM (#3957707) Homepage
    Man I love mechs.

    What is it that makes 'em so wicked? The massive firepower? The vaguely human-like form? The juvenile fantasy of blowing shit up in a big way for the fun of it? The sharp angles and "future" look they sport?

    Damn they're cool. Who hasn't seen one and wished they could be piloting one of those things.

    They'd make a great commuter vehicle. I wouldn't have to worry about pricks cutting me off and sideswiping me anymore. No parking spots? Just vaporize a couple lowly cars to make a space.

    And how amazing is it his young daughters find it cool, and he games with other women? There is hope for humanity, and this is proof.
    • Re:I love mechs (Score:1, Offtopic)

      by gwizah (236406)
      You mean "There is hope for my sex life" don't you?
    • Titans of Steel http://www.titansofsteel.de/
      v1.4 is freeware

      It is a tactical turn based mech game made for Windows 9x/ME. It's an offspring of Mechforce, the brilliant Amiga classic by Ralph Reed.

      Two screenshots at http://www.titansofsteel.de/download.html

      More screenshots of v1.4 and new version in beta at http://www.matrixgames.com/games/titansofsteel2/sc reenshots.asp
    • They'd make a great commuter vehicle. I wouldn't have to worry about pricks cutting me off and sideswiping me anymore. No parking spots? Just vaporize a couple lowly cars to make a space.

      That's my dream, right there. The image I love the best is climbing down from my 50-ton death machine, and as I'm walking to the office buy the little button on the key-chain thingie and hear the mech emit that tiny little "chirp" when the alarm activates :-)
      • No need. 'Mechs have a badass security system: screw up the voiceprint or passphrase, and a feedback surge through the neurohelmet scrambles the brain of the attempted thief. He'll be in no shape to fight off the mechwarrior when he comes to get his 'mech and paste the thief under his metal foot.
  • sigh (Score:1, Offtopic)

    by Megane (129182)
    Maybe we need an "alt.binaries.slashdot" newsgroup to put up graphics from slashdotted sites?
  • Now I will truly be impressed when somebody converts his/her Piper Cub or Gulfstream IV into a Valkrie or YF-19.

  • Congratulations Sir, you just won the official "World's Coolest Dad" award.

  • (Disclaimer: This is MY clan, note my /. name;-)

    This project of his has been going on for many months now, and he is (rightfully) the envy of the entire league.

    To get an idea of what our little crowd is like, you should really check out our (soon to be /.ed ) server [comstarguard.com]

  • Screw that, I'm gonna wait for someone to build a Star Destroyer. Of course as soon as I get that someone else will already have a Death Star, but they're vulnerable to starfighter attack anyway.
  • Site slashdotted... yada yada... Couldn't get all the images before it timed out, but I put a semi decent mirror of the page here [digitalsorceress.com]
  • "White-knuckled Geek obsession"
  • Heavily Slashdotted (Score:2, Informative)

    by CommieLib (468883)
    I know it's no fun without pics, but here goes:

    The Making of a BattleMech
    By Com Star Guard (CSG)
    Free Universe Mechwarrior League (FUML)

    One January evening Jim arrived home from work early and there were two pickup trucks in the driveway with him. Oh yeah, he had said something about getting a couple of old shipping crates for the kids to play with. He and his friends unloaded the crates and dragged them into the garage. Little did either of us know then that these crates would take over our garage for many months to come and keep Jim very busy for the next seven months.

    At first it was going to be a simple little fort, nail the crates together cut a door and a couple windows, throw on some paint and voila the kids have a playhouse. But change had already set in; the girls started talking about a tree house so the design evolved "upwards" to a fort on stilts. Over the next week as the "air fort" design was coming together a shift in paradigm occurred. When looking at the crates, Jim's Mech-riddled brain now saw two LRM racks. So the question was posed to the children.... How about a "Mech tree house"? They love watching Daddy play the game with his team the ComStar Guard (http://www.comstarguard.com) as part of the Free Universe Mechwarriors League (http://www.fuml.net), and they each have their favorite Mech so the idea was an instant hit. The type of Mech was obvious, a Madcat, the two LRM racks sealed its fate (plus the fact that it is really one of the simplest chassis with more interior room for the playhouse). And so, with some screen shots from the game, the MW4 game manual, a caliper, and a pile of paper, the sketching began. The scale was set by the size of the crates and the height of the garage door resulting in an overall average of approximately 38%. To tell the truth there really aren't any plans for the thing... more like scrapes of papers with small working sketches and calculations, most of which were scattered around the yard and garage.

    So now it was off to Lowes to get plywood, 2 x 4's, and other assorted hardware. Over the next couple months working on and off during the evenings and on some weekends the Mech slowly took form. It started as a rectangular fort with the crates (LRM racks) mounted on the sides; neighbors would come by and look inquisitively. The kids had already taken to it, climbing all over it during the construction, spawning the idea to put several hatches on top - the kids could now climb into the LRM racks from above or below (these would later be screwed closed when the roof was towering 12 ft up). As part of the playhouse aspect of the layout there is also a large back door, which will one day open onto some sort of a little deck (still to be built) allowing easier access and a place for the kids to stage their toys. The Front - Before the Nose Cone
    The Hatches on Top
    The Back Door

    Now it really needed the cockpit/nose so how to make the curved parts? Several attempts were made with plywood (scoring the backside) and bending it over the frame, but the radius was too tight and Jim's patience way too short. So it was back to Lowes and to Standard Steel for some aluminum and Plexiglas sheets and lots of pop rivets. The nose cone was still a question - Wal-Mart didn't sell a steel salad bowl big enough so the search continued. Leave that for later.

    The cockpit begins to take shape

    Wouldn't it look good if it were painted? The kids looked at all sorts of paint schemes from the game Mechlab and the voting began. Lets just leave it at Dad having to override all the popular votes (for red, purple etc) for a nice subdued camouflage pattern that wouldn't draw protests from the neighbors. So off to Wal-Mart for exterior paint, lots of sealant, and spray-paint for the details. The computer and MS PowerPoint came in handy for making a whole range of templates to do the detailed painting. The first was the hexagonal missile ports on the LRM racks. After completing painting on the first rack (one heck of a difficult job) Jim looked back at one of the color screen shots... the background should have been gray not green... well, that wouldn't do! It was too difficult to repaint the background around the hexagons so an entirely new plan was hatched. Instead of painting, the hexagons would be cut from plywood, painted, and screwed into place on the rack (much easier, right?!). My son now wants to replace these with real tubes to launch fireworks (thanking CSG_Mhowatt for his rocket post)! So an assembly line was setup to construct and paint hexagons and another trip scheduled back to Wal-Mart for gray paint (I know Wal-Mart loves me). The Hexagons in Progress
    Adding Some Camouflage and Details
    More Camouflage

    Well now comes a decision point ... should we downscale to a pseudo Catapult and minimize additional work???? No lets go for it, its time to start working the arms... back to Lowes for more wood (I know Lowes loves me too).

    Nearly completed Body.... Still looking for that nose cone!!

    Well, it is starting to look pretty good now so it might as well get a set of real legs... right! The initial design started with wood construction for the legs using a lot of 2x10s. They were pretty sturdy and very heavy, however, with the body weighing something like 700 lbs and the thought of our kids playing on it way up in the air, the legs were being reconsidered. The credit goes to CSG_Gator for his comments regarding the use of steel for the new direction in leg construction. The steel would allow for the correct look (angles) and provide more than enough rigidity for an equivalent weight. After a few calculations, overkill was decided as the best course and the order went into Standard Steel for 30 feet of 4" x 6" steel box beam with a 0.25" wall thickness. The steel legs would look like "chick legs" under it so the 2x10s from the original legs would be cut up to encase the steel... giving them that right "look".

    The steel arrived and was it ever heavy!! The only time AutoCad was used on this project was to layout the steel legs (make sure of all the angles and lengths). So started the job of cutting it up and laying the pieces out (now that was a workout). A saws-all was used for all cutting jobs; kudos to Milwaukee for their 9" metal cutting blades called "The Torch", they really worked well! The time finally came to weld; the neighbors had to wonder what was going on with all the light coming from the driveway and around the side of the house late into the night. Now there are a lot of hours worth of welding in those legs, the bad part was Jim made the mistake of wearing cloths with holes in them (not thinking) his first long day - he got some pretty bad "sun burn" spots! Total weight of the steel leg assembly is around 500 lbs... that sure is going to make it fun to move and setup!!! Original Wood Leg - Scrapped for Steel
    Welding Steel Leg
    Steel Belly Support
    Final assembly of the legs to belly support

    Meanwhile, the nose cone was finally finished off in an act of desperation using strips of aluminum flashing and lots of aluminized tape (didn't look too bad). It was now time to get the Mech out of the garage so that the wife's car could once again be parked inside. So a good friend was invited over and asked bring his truck (kind of knew what he was getting into) and the towing began... the first question, would it fit through the garage door? It looks taller than the door opening, but measurements confirmed that there was one inch to spare. The trek begins...

    The next obstacle was the gate through our side fence. It's 8 ft wide and plenty big for a car but not for a 38% scale BattleMech so one of the arms was removed (it hadn't been fully secured in anticipation of this event). But even after the arm was removed the Mech just barely made it through the gate (left some paint behind). Will it fit through the gate????
    Just pull really hard!!!
    Finally made it to the back yard!!!!
    With the garage once again cleared it was time to set the legs and figure out how in the heck the body was going to get up on top (we will worry about that later). First on the agenda was to select where to put the thing in the backyard, a strategic position was selected to minimize visibility from the road and surrounding houses. To maximize stability two holes were dug at over three-feet of depth (measured to account for the slope in our yard). It was another few weeks before I could convince that same friend to come back and help set up the legs. Well, it required a lot of brute force, but eventually the legs were in the holes and the thing was up - and crooked! What the heck, I accounted for everything!!!!
    Up Up and away
    It's in but man is it crooked...
    does Jim know how to measure??

    Later, with the help of a friend's come-along the assembly was pulled back out and leaned against the tree. The root of the tilt problem was a root that got lodged in the beam as it slid into the hole. After some pounding with a shovel and post hole digger the root problem was taken care of and the legs dumped back into the hole - much easier this time. They were leveled, secured, and 15 bags (80lb each) of concrete dumped into the holes... these things aren't going anywhere!!!! The next job was to begin encasing the steel legs in wood (and continue thinking about how to get the Mech up onto its legs).
    Slowly encasing the legs

    Finally the big day arrived. Arrangements had been made with several friends to come over one weekend and help get the Mech up on its legs. How was it going to be done? Well, the general idea was to hook a chain hoist up high on the tree right behind the legs and then pull. The angle was pretty bad so two 4x4 skids were set up for the thing to ride up along and keep it moving in the correct direction. Other than that, it was really pretty much figured it out as we went. Our trailer worked out good for a first stopping point. As it got higher Jim convinced his friend to put his truck under it for another stopping point (he did it reluctantly after Jim promised to pay for damages if the thing fell on it). Even the old lawn mower got into the action putting tension on all the cables. In just a couple of hours the Mech was on its legs and the big kids were climbing on top!!

    Up it goes!!!!

    To provide temporary access to the mech (keep the kids happy) a large wood ladder up to the rear door was built from scrapes. The plans are to build a small deck outback for the kids to have better access and to put all their stuff on. The Mrs. climbed up, then through the center hatch, and stood out on top of it - and decided that the kids shouldn't! She declared that it "sure seems a lot taller from up there", and "it has a great view over the top of our house". On July 4th the kids sat up there with their Aunt and said they could see fireworks from "everywhere". The last jobs included finishing up the legs, adding the 3 toed feet, and going all over the thing to do the final sealing. The final touches were to add some more trim paint and of course to add my unit, the Comstar Guard, logo. I consider it one of the finest units around and have teamed with these gentlemen and ladies for three years check us out at http://www.comstarguard.com. I still need to add a logo for a great growing league that we play in, the Free Universe Mechwarrior League (FUML), which is all about hard hitting action check out http://www.fuml.net. It seems to take forever to get all the little stuff added and I'm sure there will be a few extras (like substituting real pipe for some of the painted gun ports) but for the most part this project is finally complete. The back door and temp ladder
    Some last work painting/sealing.
    The finished product...Finally!

    Just about every kid who has seen it has either asked Jim to build them one or gone home to ask their dad to build one. One neighborhood dad (not willing to build one) told his kids that they were very lucky to have a dad like him - one who was smart enough to move to a neighborhood where another dad would build a BattleMech that they could play on. After seven months the BattleMech is finally completed (minus the deck and stairs). It is quite a "fort / tree house" and definitely a conversation piece! Now maybe some of the real home projects like screening in the deck can get started... but then again the kids are never satisfied. One wants a Raven, and the little guy wants either an Atlas or a BattleMech that moves! Some of the kids comments include: "I think it is very, very big and I am scared of heights", "It is beautiful!", "If we put batteries in it, it will move it has metal legs", and "It's very nice and the feet are nice. Daddy's going to make a walking Mech.".

    That's all for now, Enjoy! CSG_Starfury
  • Oh man...

    If I only had this to play cowboys and indians with.
  • Hey! That looks like a 1986 St. Pat's sweatshirt (from UMR [umr.edu]) he's wearing in some of those shots. Really cool!
  • Mech designation (Score:3, Informative)

    by Shinobi (19308) on Friday July 26, 2002 @10:30AM (#3958117)
    Clueless editors.... *Grumbles and swears*
    Both Mad Cat and Timber Wolf are correct designations. Mad Cat is the Inner Sphere designation, while Timber Wolf is the Clan designation for that particular Omnimech.
    • The editor didn't make that comment, Jodrell the submitter did. Notice the use of italics.
    • Does anyone remember playing Battletech mud? With Color Ansi text, was the first large scale multiplayer game I played. I dont remember the exact one (Colorado EDU i think), but I found BattleTech 3065 MUX [betterbox.net] which seems pretty close.

      Side note on the game. We use to have open mechs contests, where you could use any tech to build a mech. Make 3 mechs to play. I used tons of clan tech, put a beagle probe on a mech that could run around 29+ or some ungodly hexes. First round, my light mech (15 ton i think) was behind them. Nobody had a chance. Oh the time wasted on it.

  • .. a few months and the kits will turn up on www.iwantoneofthose.com [iwantoneofthose.com]
  • And I struggle to find the time just to weed! This has got to be the only thing this family did for months. Hats offto their enthusiasm and fortitude!
  • Since the kids will be playing with it, let's hope it doesn't meet the same fate as the Backyard Millenium Falcon did!
  • The page comes out to over 2.7 MEGS! Come on, you're using JPEG.. USE THE COMPRESSION OPTION DAMNIT! That and the pages doesn't render well in opera... bastards..
  • in 1970 or 71 my dad built me a Apollo lunar modual out of plywood. it was cool. i guess i need to keep up the tradution. :-)
  • by tsangc (177574) on Friday July 26, 2002 @11:20AM (#3958537)
    Shouldn't the treehouse be a bit more generic to inspire open ended play? Kids make up all sorts of games, roleplaying (not THAT kind of roleplaying) and play situations: For example, a generic treehouse could be a fort, a pirate ship, a space ship, a storefront, etc.

    Obviously someone spent a great deal of effort here, but this treehouse can only be a giant mech...

    Calum
    • It's probably something else already. My children seem to have no problems pretending that the massively over-specific toys their aunts buy them are something they only vaguely resemble.

      Unfortunately the trees in our yard are not conducive to supporting any kind of treehouse.
    • I love how the links on the bottom of this post say "Reply to This | Parent"

      M@
    • You underestimate the imagination of children. Within a couple of days the treehouse has probaly been a mech pirate the scourge of the seven seas, a cowboy mech at a showdown at high noon, a police officer mech (oh wait that's already been made into a movie...), and of course the ever popular mech playing doctor.
    • Of course, I don't think any would support the idea that this project was done with *only* the kids in mind.. ..take a look at the picture of when they finally got the body hoisted up on top of the legs....those aren't kids raising their arms in triumph! This is like trying to convince your significant other that, yes, we should buy a PS2 because then we'd have a DVD player always hooked up to our TV! It really is in YOUR interest, right honey?
    • So everybody has to subscribe to YOUR idea of what a treehouse should or shouldn't be? What makes YOU so wise and puissant?

      It's a cool treehouse. Any kid with an imagination is going to be able to make up whatever stories they want to about why their treehouse looks the way it does. Lighten up.
    • What killjoy universe did you come from? Mechs are cool!
    • For example, a generic treehouse could be a fort, a pirate ship, a space ship, a storefront, etc.

      Obviously someone spent a great deal of effort here, but this treehouse can only be a giant mech...


      Um... WTF? A giant mech is just as open ended as those things are. What else can a priate ship be aside from... a pirate ship? If it's painted and has all the markings of a pirate ship it's not like it will magically transform into an F1 race car. Or a space ship. What else can it be? an office cubicle for children to pretend playing "real life in their future"? Even the store front isn't too open ended... Yeah it can be a general store now, and maybe as the kids get older a tobacco store, smoke shop (for when they start puffin the cheeba), or even doctors office (hey, a kids gotta learn about the opposite sex sometime)... but that still doesn't seem very much more open ended than a giant mech would be.
  • I hope doesn't come apart in a thunder boomer.

    Happy happy Joy joy it's FRIDAY.
  • The project began with a 20ft long, 3ft round sewer tube as it's backbone and everything else was made out of wood and other assorted items. Examples: The 11 thrusters seen on the back of the engine were actually built from two seperate trashcans each

    So theoretically we could build a replica in orbit with all that shit floating around.
  • getting the project approved by the wife. Then again, anything with kid pre-approval is a lot easier I guess.

    This guy really makes me ashamed to be a geek...he has outdone us all...hang your heads in rejected geek shame!
  • If google can cache pages then why can't /.? Time to register deadlinks.org.
  • Some company in finland figured out a way to build a forest harvesting machine that walks.

    It uses a diesel engine driving a hydraulic pump to acutate it's limbs. Check it out:

    http://www.plustech.fi/Walking1.html

  • What's next? Someone building a gigantic Omega Prime for his kids?
  • Here is a mirror [reames.org].

    Its got all the fluff removed and compressed images.
  • If only the weapons systems were real. We could RULE the neighbourhood.

  • they were the ones who worked with the guy to set up the HTML etc. and they posted the story of the tree house first. He is also a member of the mektek.net forums. It goes to show you there are copy whores on even bigger company sites like wizkidz. Give mektek.net a little bit of credit, they have gone a long way to keeping the mechwarrior community alive. www.themfb.com
  • I zipped through the Millenium Falcon pages, and was saddened to read that the property owner's neighbors were "pissed".

    I always thought that if I left the city and found a nice piece of land somewhere, I could use it to do silly thing like build a starship in the corner of the yard, like the ones I used to design as a kid.

    But it seems whereever you go, there are neighbors who deem your property under their control, and the laws back them up. Condos, too: had a deal once where I sold a place because the other owners decided they were "in fear" of some gamers I had over one night (ooo - they were NOT-WHITE - scary!) and made my life a hell 'til I left. The tiny-souled, vicious people are the ones who make their screaming heard.

    Hey, /.ers -- is there anywhere in the U.S. where a man could be left the hell alone from the neighbors? I need options here.

    As for the Mech, I love people who dream and do what other people don't! Make more 'mechs, build starships in your back yard. Live a little!
  • Just one thing, the fabulous Timber Wolf is from Clan Wolf! If it was from Jade Falcon, it would be something like timber falcon, or mad jade, or whatever...

    Frank

  • It must have taken a lot of determination to build that, and I'm not talking about the months and months of actual construction -- which was a heaping load of blood, sweat, & tears in its own right. I'm talking about the crap that every homeowner has to deal with, such as convincing the wife to let him undertake this massive project, not pissing off the neighborhood with a giant eyesore (or making all the other neighborhood dads feel inadequate!), and dealing with the fact that you can basically never move out. Or, if you do, you have to find some way to remove the 700 lbs of wood 25 ft high in the air, resting on 500 lbs of steel frame, embedded three feet deep in the ground with 1300 pounds of concrete. I'd love to see the look on the face of the real estate agent called upon to sell the house... "and here we have the 25 foot tall mechwarrior playhouse."

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