When it comes to projects like the car build or car restoration, it’s not uncommon to get one or even few donor cars in the process, just for the parts. After you use the parts that you need, the rest usually goes for sale, or you build a mountain out of the spare parts somewhere in your garage when nobody can judge you. Only completely unusable parts are going to waste.
Our situation was very similar, we had this mountain of Capri spare parts and were trying to figure out what to do with it, because the cost of repair already outweighed the price of the item itself. Somebody would probably see a bunch of junk, but we saw an opportunity to do some recycling, create something nice, so we decided to turn it into furniture.
To be perfectly fair, automotive furniture is nothing new. People were always inspired by the interesting mechanical bits and pieces, trying to reinvent them somehow, make them usable again. Cars were no exception. Everybody has their taste and vision how this type of furniture should look like, so we did our interpretation. We wanted to create a smooth, industrial look that will appear nice even to people that are not essentially connected to the automotive world and share no interest in it.
While getting our ideas on the table, we saw that most of the engine tables, lamps, and so on are almost entirely made out of recycled parts, usually in their original, raw colors and materials. Also, they stood out a little too much for our taste.
Having that in mind, the plan was to try to find the balance between the recycled parts and custom build elements. In the phase of preparation, we removed all the extra bits, smoothed out all the pipe outlets and the distracting details from the parts. One of the earliest design decisions was to powder coat everything in a fine textured black color, to make it visually more appealing, but also to reduce rough mechanical look.
We started with two old seats.
The pipe cutting and welding in correct position was a tedious process, so I forgot to take photographs. After welding, everything was sanded by hand, and preparation for the powder coating has started.
Upholstery dismantling was the next step, luckily the foam was in great shape.
The fiddly work of unsewing the whole upholstery to pieces and precisely tracing each individual part.
To perfectly trace the template, some parts needed to be ironed.
Still not ready for mounting.
We wanted to give the seats a cozy armchair feel, so upholstery cotton was glued everywhere.
After a few days of fiddling, the first element was mounted (still missing the buttons that will give the contour and furniture touch that we felt was needed).
When you have so many projects, you learn how to be flexible with the things you have at your disposal to get the job done. Here you can see a bunch of parts that were just sand blasted and thrown in our small Mitsubishi Colt.
Like with many things, this piece was sewn a couple of times until we were completely satisfied.
After a couple of models, the final one was done and it was ready for stretching.
Everything was glued with the special upholstery glue.
I used this old PC and a 5 kg dead battery block for weight. Everybody should have a 5 kg dead battery block.
Some details couldn’t be powder coated, so the final few touches were done by spray paint.
The final products – two chairs.
A detail of the turn knob which is, of course, fully functional.
The story with the tables started with these beaten up engines.
After disassembly, some smoothing and cutting all the unnecessary bits, they where degreased and then sand blasted.
You can count how many times you’ll hear sand blasting during this post. Yep, this was sand blasted.
Custom machined bits and pieces and some buttons.
Hidden wheels for the tables, so you can move them around without using the forklift.
The bigger one – V6 version.
These thick metal parts are custom made elements that were laser cut and then welded to the pipe.
The adapter for the bulb and the wiring.
A detail of the Edison type bulb.
A flywheel stand.
For the stools, the first step was to making a seat, which started with cutting some plywood.
The next step was the upholstery work. Remember the chairs? The material was used from the failed upholstery attempts of sewing them.
After the adapter plate was made to connect the seat to the crankshaft, the toughest part was done.
The stools are pretty heavy but extremely stable.
These cactus stands were made of pulley and some steel wire, plates for the pulley were laser cut, and then welded. The whole thing wasn’t that simple because the legs were bent using this custom tool, which was made just for this purpose. This was just for Goga’s fun.
We were anxious to see how it will look like, so we grabbed this mutant. Seemed legit.
The last item was the pendant light which was made out of two camshafts and a couple of laser cut panels. You get a bonus for getting this far with a post – a jump cut to the final product!
We used the same type of bulbs, only smaller.
Some of you with a keen eye will notice a bunch of small visual connections that were by no means accidental. The lamp pipes are the same diameter as the slots for the wheels on the tables and some parts of the stools. The rubber balls that hold the table glass are also used for the cactus holders and their legs were intentionally made out of wire to make the connection with the wire that reinforce the chair. All the upholstery was done with the same material and stitch pattern. The entire line is following the same visual code – black with copper and brownish details for the glass, braided cables, turn knob, even the bulbs.