226 – Grasshopper Pull Toy
Video - August 14, 2014
This fun little pull toy is easy to make. The great thing about it is you can get your child involved in the process at whatever level you’re comfortable with. Older kids can cut and sand the parts. Younger kids can paint and assemble the grasshoppers.
The design was inspired by several images of various grasshopper and cricket pull toys found through a Google search.
This was the first project I included “the Apprentice” in and he had an absolute blast. His little friend Devyn had a great time too and both kids played with their grasshoppers all night long. So these are definitely kid-approved at this point. In today’s world of pre-packaged plastic, I think it’s good to encourage kids to make their own toys with their own hands.
I didn’t have the benefit of templates when I made this video but we had a nice template document made up for your convenience. It shows not only the various shapes but also the drilling locations. All you need to do is download the Template File and print it. Make sure you print full size with no scaling. Cut the parts out and attach them to your workpieces with some spray adhesive and start cutting and drilling. When the parts are fully milled, you can remove the template with some minerals spirits or acetone in preparation for painting.
The wheels and the axel pegs are all pre-made for simplicity. While you should be able to find them at any decent craft store, we specifically got ours from a local Jo-anne store.
We make no claims as to the safety of this toy for children. Do your research and decide for yourself if the toy is safe enough for your child. Also, keep in mind that if the toy will end up in a child’s mouth, you have to be very careful about what you finish the toy with. My son is almost three so a simple water-based kid’s paint is just fine for us.