Sunday, September 18, 2022

Upcycled Stained Glass Bicycle Wheel

 In 2014 I got together with some friends and learned to do some basic stained glass. Two years after that I started a big stained glass project that culminated in 2017 with the installation of an 8-panel stained glass piece (https://www.renaissance-dad.com/2017/06/diy-stained-glass.html). Since then I have dabbled in stained glass, doing little projects as an artistic stress relief. 

Fast forward to the COVID years, and stress levels were high. So amidst the other things that help me find balance (woodworking, gardening, DIY projects, home improvement). This past spring I decided to start another stained glass project, and figured my garden could use a little color. My inspiration was something my mom sent me years ago as a possible project, and it has been living in my brain for all these years. 

I started by obtaining an old bicycle. I took the front wheel and the fork off. After stripping the wheel of reflectors, the tube and the tire, and after cleaning up the wheel, I had the base for my project. The plan was to put glass pieces in the triangular sections of

the wheel. Since all of the sections were the same shape, I made a cardboard template for the shape. And then I started cutting glass. 

Sixteen pieces later, I was ready to determine the color scheme, start edge the pieces and the spokes, and solder everything in place. Since it was summer in Arizona in a garage with no air conditioning, it was slow going. 

The thing that I enjoy about a project like this that takes months is that I have plenty of time to think about what the end result will be. Initially I was planning on cementing this into one of my garden beds, but as I was thinking about the end result, I eventually decided to cement the fork into a pot. This will allow me to move it around the garden as I decide where it will best fit. 

As the cement was curing, I decided to top it with some beach stones that I had left over from a different project. The end result is a sun filtering wheel of delight! 

So what do you think? Where would this go best? Next to a pool? In a garden bed? Under a tree? I'd love to hear your thoughts. Comment below. 





1 comment:

  1. Beautiful work Matt! Love the idea of using a pot and the stones!

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