A Transforming, Roaring, Fire-Breathing Van

Photo: Skylar

Wicked Evolution, Jr. is a 750-lb miniature van that can stand upright, partially transform into a vaguely beast-like creature, roar, and breathe fire. It was made by a fellow named Skylar, and is among his many custom-built vehicles:

The entire creation was scratch built in the basement of my house without any special fabrication tools. I just used a cutter, grinder, mig welder and a homemade metal bender. Some parts can be easily found like riding mover rims, garage door springs and big casters you can get in a hardware store. You may need to look harder to find the rest like like special order quad tires, heavy duty electric motors, radio control unit, stainless steel sheet metal, linear actuators and special solenoids (from ebay) and light duty hydraulics. Some steel came from a scrap pile in a junkyard to save money.[...]

It uses 3 sets of linear actuators and hydraulics to transform. First, extensions move from the bottom to push it up while an extension on the back with 2 heavy duty casters catch it as it comes backwards. It uses those back casters to steady it standing. When it first starts to stand, it breaks in half at the back of the doors and folds 90 degrees as the front of the van pulls backwards with hydraulics. The windshield lowers out of view and the front suspension bends in the center also with hydraulics. As it comes to a standing mechanical monster, the middle lifting mechanism tucks upwards, the doors open like wings. The convertible roof opens like a tail. Then the headlights come on and the front grill becomes a face that shoots sparks and flames (from a full size propane tank)

Link via Gizmodo (where there's a video)

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